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  #1 (permalink)  
Old March 12th, 2004, 02:32 PM
Jerry and Kirk
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Default DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

My partner and I felt honored when we received an invitation from Princess Cruises to tour the Diamond on March 11th before it's inaugural sailing......we accepted immediately!

This mega sized ship has everything to offer both young and old and anyone in-between. Compared to the 2002 built Star Princess, the Diamond is similar but has improvements in layout, design and furnishings......in most cases. The Princess Theatre, Explorers Lounge, piano bar area and Atrium remain almost the same, as well as the 2 main pools. The relocated Internet Cafe is a nerds dream come true......even has a gourmet coffee bar (pay-for) and limited harder drinks for sale.......what next??? Club Fusion, formally Vista Lounge, has an interesting downward spiraling staircase that leads to an intimate spot named The Waiting Room, where you can escape from the crowds and noise above you.

Complimentary lunch in the International dining room was provided and the food was five star quality. In addition to a fine meal, we were presented with a lovely glassed etched trivet, signed and numbered commemorating the Inaugural Season. However, the restaurant was not easy to find if you are between the bow and beyond mid-ship because there is no direct elevator access, so it's up a level, walk accross a twisting area and then down a level.......we needed a crew member to guide us there. The biggest disappointment was the loss of the looooong glassed in view-of-the-world (like on the Star) escalator leading to Skywalkers Diso. It has been replaced with a not to interesting inside escalator.

I could go on forever but I won't. Hope you get a chance to sail on it someday.

J & K

30 + cruises
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Old March 12th, 2004, 02:59 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Thanks for your thoughts J & K on this ship. I'll be sailing on it May 8th to Alaska.

This will be my first Princess cruise so I'm hoping I enjoy it as much as my previous 6 cruises on RCCL and Celebrity.

Thanks again!

Mark
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Old March 12th, 2004, 11:54 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

WOW.
Sounds wonderful.
How lucky you are to be able to access so soon the Diamond Princess.
How do we get to join this Exclusive Gentelmens Club that was so lucky to have a wonderful lunch and tour on this beautiful ship.
We have heard of ----- Envy but now i have Princess Envy?

Cheers Bruce
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Old March 13th, 2004, 10:11 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

J&K,

I agree with you on the dining rooms ... it was difficult figuring out which way to go with the up, down and around. Seems the personal choice ones are easier to find.

Harry

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Old March 18th, 2004, 06:40 PM
Mikey + Anthony
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

The love of my life and me are taking our 1st cruise this summer to Alaska on the Diamiond -- a honeymoon of sorts.

Would love to know your thoughts on the ship and any suggestions on-board and while in Alaska (should you have any)

Many thanks,

Mikey mikeymd2b@yahoo.com
Anthony out_ofthebox@yahoo,com
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Old March 19th, 2004, 12:06 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Hi guys,

What a great ship in which to take your first cruise -- you will be so spoiled!

I would definitely pick Personal Choice dining -- the choices blew me away. There is a steakhouse (very good), Asian, Southwestern and Italian. All are free. Sabitinis is the only one that charges, and I have heard many good comments about it.

The glass covered pool will be wonderful in Alaska -- I love the high quality chaise lounges there (not the white plastic ones).

I've never been to Alaska, but I know the tours can be on the pricey side. Perhaps start looking on the princess.com site as to which ones interest you (and then put the money aside ahead of time).

Finally, be sure and input all your boarding info on the princess site for Express Check In -- makes it much faster for boarding.

I took 53 pics of the Diamond when we were on her ... just go to "Interactive Features" then pull down to Photo Galleries. The Diamond gallery is about 7 from the top.

Harry

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Old March 19th, 2004, 02:07 PM
Jerry and Kirk
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Hi Mikey and Anthony,

I'd be delighted to elaborate about the Diamond Princess, give you on-board suggestions, and something about the Alaska ports:

First, keep in mind that the ship is HUGE. Allow yourselves plenty of time to get from one place to another......you may not want to miss an event or activity, etc. Don't worry about over eating because all the walking you'll be doing on the ship and in the ports will keep you nice and trim. I actually lost 3 pounds after making a PIG of myself for 36 days on my most recent cruise on the Start Princess. There's a great gym on the ship if you like work-outs. That will keep you nice and trim too.

Now seriously, planning your trip is the most important thing to do before you leave. Research and review everything you can get your hands on about the ship and ports and discuss EVERTHING with your partner about what you'd like to do on-board and off or you'll be wasting precious time. There are tons of options, so talk it out . The ports are all wonderful and walkable. Shore excursion can be very expensive (like hellicopter rides, salom fishing etc), so know your budget. The weather can be very cold and rainly depending on what time of year you are going......check it out if you haven't already. If you like hanging out at a pool there is a pool with a covered dome protecting you from bad weather.......very nice......but a no smoking area. If your are smokers use the adjacent pool area. Next to that pool is a pizza counter and a hot dog and hamburger counter. Pizza is wonderful........just WAIT for one fresh out of the oven. Hamburgers are great too but you won't get it anything but well done unless you BEG. I did, and it woked 90 percent of the time. Don't waste your time on the hot dogs.

There are so many restaurants that you won't have time to try them all in the amount of time you will be on the ship. In my opinion, I wouldn't waste my time eating in the pay-for restaurants because the food won't be much better ( but service will be a little better) than the no-charge restaurants. However, IF your cellebrating a special event, the pay-for restaurants are more intimate than the main dining rooms. Drinks are getting expensive on ships these days.......budget for it.

If you like to gamble you'll love the casino. IF you like the slots, and particularly the penny nickel dime ones, you'll have to go there on an off hour hour otherwise you'll wait in line forever before you get too one.

If your interested in meeting other "family" members just request and an FOD meeting from the cruise director.

If you have any other questions or more specific questions, just post them.

Jerry
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Old March 19th, 2004, 02:22 PM
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Default Re: Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Harry

You've never been to Alaska???? I was surprised to hear that from a seasoned cruiser such as yourself! ;-)

I think it's time for you to make your reservations on the Diamond once again, this time heading to Alaska!

MTS
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Old March 19th, 2004, 09:03 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Oh boy, Jerry gave such great tips!

Thanks Jerry!

I know about Alaska -- personal thing here. I was conceived there and my Mom calls it the hell hole of the U.S. She lived thru the cold with 3 kids.

Maybe I will get past that.

:-)

Harry

thanks again Jerry for all the good info!

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Old March 20th, 2004, 07:31 PM
Jerry and Kirk
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Hey Bruce,

You said, "How do we get to join this Exclusive Gentlemans club that was so lucky to have a lunch and a tour on this beautiful ship".?

Well Bruce, there is NO Gentlemans club. But , if you've traveled with Princess Cruises at least 15 times, an invitation would have been be a shoe-in. When you reach that tier level you are given a new status called "Elite" level, the highest level offered. Once you've graduated to that level there are many perks, like complimentary laundry , dry cleaning, shoe polishing and mini bar set up etc etc....... .go for it!....... you wont be sorry !

Jerry
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Old March 20th, 2004, 09:10 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

One of these days I willl hit that.

Art and I were just happy we had the gold behind our names on the sailing.


Harry

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Old March 26th, 2004, 02:03 PM
Anthony + Mikey
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Default Re: Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Thank you so much!

We love you pictures - and post them to our desktop for our PC's background!

All the best!

~Mikey & Anthony
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Old March 26th, 2004, 02:09 PM
Anthony + Mikey
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Default Re: Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Jerry and Harry:

You are both so wonderful for getting back to us. You ideas are very helpful and we will ineed take advantage of all that you shared!

Are they very strict about the drinking age on-board, my partner (Anthony) is 20....

Not I , not only are we having a quasi-honeymoon, Ill be celebrating my finishing up my medical school/3-years of residency in SoCali!!! So we have alot of drinking and fun to catch up on!

Oh ya: What is a FOD?

Again, thank you so much for replying to us!

~Mikey
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Old March 26th, 2004, 10:57 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Mikey,

They might mark Anthony's card as below 21, so I would just use yours to buy drinks. Hopefully Anthony looks a tad older so you won't be bothered.

By the way, congrats on finishing residency!!!

FOD is Friends of Dorothy ... sometimes there are gay people meetings on board but they are cloaked under this disguise.

Save some dollars away for excursions in Alaska ... they are somewhat pricey but people rave about 'em.

And you two keep the questions coming as the time nears OK?

Harry

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Old May 2nd, 2004, 01:06 AM
Jerry and Kirk
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Default Re: Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

A repeat for all you Princess fans.........

Jerry & Kiirk 30 + cruises
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Old May 10th, 2004, 08:02 PM
Jerry and Kirk
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Mark,

Let us know what you thought about the ship and the Alaska ports, etc. when you return ..... some details please.

Thanks,

Jerry & Kirk
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Old May 11th, 2004, 12:42 PM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

We're now booked for the Oct 30th sailing!

Woo-hoo!

And a mini-suite this time.

Harry

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Old May 20th, 2004, 07:35 AM
Jerry and Kirk
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Default Re: Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Hey Harry,

You booked a mini suite??? I thought you said you wouldn't be able to go on a cruise for a long time because your buying a new house and all the expenses that go with it..........well you know! What happened, did you sell a BIG chunk of real estate or did old aunt Sadie mention you in her will? Which is it?

J&K
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Old May 20th, 2004, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: DIAMOND PRINCESS-Pre Inaugural tour

Jerry.

It was a 4-part decision -- first, the rate was wonderful; second, I was getting sick of packing; third, I needed something to look forward to; and fourth, yep closed an escrow so was feeling a little less tight.

We close on the new house May 25th and moving day is May 30th!

:-)

Harry

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