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Old March 18th, 2002, 05:06 PM
KLD KLD is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 302
Default Star Princess

Toured this ship the last week when it was in LA. We were only able to visit one accessible cabin (A302) of the 28 they advertise. It has a balcony which requires a portable ramp, sleeps two only, but has a fairly nice bathroom (see pictures under title "Wheels 'n Waves" in the Photo Gallery).

The public rooms are fine for the most part, but the Princess Theater is just as bad on the other ships in the Grand Class (Grand Princess). The only wheelchair seating is up a very steep somewhat dangerous ramp, at the top row in the back to the side. There is a hand rail exactly at eye level, and the sight lines to the stage are somewhat obstructed.

As usual, the Princess staff was pretty clueless about what was and was not accessible for entering/leaving the ship, and tried to direct us to areas with stairs for this and theater access. We were unable to view any of the suites that are supposed to be accessible, including one of the "family" suites. The traffic flow in the Lido (Horizon Court) food area, is also poor, esp. for someone in a wheelchair who needs to use a tray.

Long narrow hallways, due to size of ship (2600 passengers), to negotiate (as on the Grand Princess) which can be a real problem when housekeeping carts are blocking the way. Some rooms are close to elevators, but many are not. Some features are different from the Grand Princess (location of public rooms esp.) but basically the same design.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old March 28th, 2002, 07:59 PM
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Default Re: Star Princess

Last year we cruised for 14 days visting Alaska on the Princess Cruises "Sea Princess"
where I concluded the vessel was not "wheel chair friendly". It looks like the Star Princess is no different than the ships constructed similar to the Sea Princess. My better half uses a wheel chair but does not need a wheel chair accessible stateroom.
Unfortunately our TA thought the elevators at the rear of the vessel would provide access to the dining rooms but we discoverd these ran only from Deck 7 to 12. Since all the eating facilkities were in the front of the ship, it was 550 ft. from our cabin to the front elevator. The dining rooms were on deck 5 and 6 in the front of the ship.This would have given me good exercise if it were not for the narrow passageway being blocked by steward's carts in the morning and early evening. The carts are so wide that it is difficult if not impossible to get by unless you can find a room steward to move the cart.

Then there were unusually high sills wherever there is a fire door that made it difficult to roll the front wheels over the sill. The elevators are supposed to hold 12 passengers, maybe 12 skinny midgets so it takes time to get an elevators. I eventually resorted to taking whatever elevator could hold a wheel chair whether it was going down or up on the theory what goes up must come down.

I wrote to the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice that handles ADA matters and received a reply that implies there is nil in ADA on having to make it easy for wheel chair passengers to get around the ship. The Coast Guard would look into the steward'scarts to see if they might be a safety hazard in an emergency. I heard nil from Princess on the subject matter.

In your report you made no mention of stairs as a means for accesing the dining room, other than personal choice. I read in a report that to get into the dining room there are stairs.? We have been asked to take a cruise on the Star in the fall but unless I feel we can get around the ship, why ?

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Old March 29th, 2002, 02:34 AM
KLD KLD is offline
Senior Member
First Mate
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 302
Default Re: Re: Star Princess

On the Star the dining room we saw was wheelchair accessible. We were not allowed to enter though, so not sure how accessible it is in all areas. I also would not take this ship. We found the Regal Princess for Alaska acceptable though when we went 2 years ago. I would stick to the Princess ships that are older than 5 years at this point. We are looking at Celebrity instead as we had good success with them in the past. Interested in trying the Infinity.
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