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Old August 21st, 2001, 07:27 AM
linda from NJ
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Default Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

My husband and I are going on the Grand Princess 11/4 to the Western Caribbean. This is our first cruise and we are booked on the Crib. Deck. We were thinking of upgrading to a minisuite but heard the balconies are not private and not covered. Anyone have information on this. Also it says that the boat stops at a port called Majahul Mexico. Can anyone tell me where that is and what is there to do their. Also heard in Grand Caymen that the cruise ships excursion to Stingray City is really crowded. Any comments.
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Old August 21st, 2001, 09:02 PM
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

We booked a private tour for Grand Caymen (Stingray city) through Captain Marvin and it was fantastic. I don't think anyone on our trip throught it was crowded. If you want his info - let me know. He picked us up at the pier in a bus and we had a delightful day. We also stopped in a few other places.

Majahul, Mexico is also known as Costa Maya. It is a port near ruins from what I understand. YOu probably will not get much feedback on this port because the dock/pier is damaged and Princess has been stopping in Playa de Carmen instead. Not sure when they will go back to Costa Maya. I went to Tulim last time I stopped in Playa de Carmen and it was wonderful (but crowded).

The balconies on Carib deck are supposedly larger than the balconies on minisuites.

We were on the Grand last December and am going back for Thanksgiving. You will enjoy it!
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Old August 21st, 2001, 09:42 PM
linda from NJ
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

Teresa:

Does Captain Marvins take reservations in advance? Is it advisable to do that in case the boat is late. How about getting you back to the boat on time? What did you do in Cozumel? Thanks for the info. We are trying to decide if we want to upgrade to a mini suite.
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Old August 21st, 2001, 11:31 PM
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

Theresa,

The balconies on Carib deck are supposedly larger than the balconies on minisuites.

This is misinformation, so let's stop spreading it. According to Princess's brochure, the balconies on the Caribe Deck of MV Grand Princess and MV Golden Princess are twice the depth of normal balconies on standard cabins (which are about three feet deep). The minisuites have somewhat larger balconies than the cabins on the Caribe Deck.

Norm.
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Old August 21st, 2001, 11:41 PM
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

Hi Linda, We had a mini-suite in April when we sailed on the Grand. There are other reasons to upgrade if you will spend the time in your cabin. First of all the cabin is over 300 square feet and has 2 TVs, a couch and table area, a full bathroom with a shower in the tiled bath tub and a full vanity area in the bathroom. The balcony is huge with two chairs that recline, two that are straight, and a full square table on it that you can have meals on. The balcony is fully exposed to all of the decks above. The Caribe deck balconies which are about the same size are one deck up and are partially exposed, but the caribe cabin is smaller and has no couch or bathtub. I hope this clears things up for you. If you have any further questions e-mail me direct.
Marci
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Old August 22nd, 2001, 07:11 PM
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

Norm -

I called Princess about 2 months ago and they gave me the specs because I was debating between the two (outside room with balcony on Caribe and minisuite). They told me that the balconies on Caribe deck were slightly larger than minisuites and twice the size of other balconies on other decks for regular rooms.

It is possible they gave me wrong information. I am just repeating the info they gave me.

Theresa
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Old August 22nd, 2001, 07:20 PM
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

Linda,

Here is Captain Marvin's website address:
http://www.captainmarvins.com/

I went on a group cruise with about 70 people. Of those, about 30 went on the excursion. Someone from our group setup the tour in advance and everything worked smoothly.

Yes - you should set this up in advance with Captain Marvin. We went in the morning and made it back in time to spend about 2 hours in port. He is used to working with cruise passengers and will meet you at the dock with a bus. He then buses you to his area and you board a boat that goes out. Here is the web page that refers to cruise passengers:

http://www.captainmarvins.com/cruise.htm

I can't say more than enough how professional Captain Marvin's organization is. I think it was the highlight of the cruise for the majority of our group.

There was no problem making it back to the ship in time.

Good luck!
Theresa
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Old August 25th, 2001, 08:07 AM
Peg Peg is offline
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Default stingray city

When you arrive in Cayman, there are several Stingray City trip providers right at the dock where you get off the tender. They all charge about $25/pp for the same tour you'd get through the cruiseline, which probably runs about $40.

We took the Century Western last winter, and didn't book anything through the cruiseline. We just don't like the herding mentality that surrounds ship tours--too crowded, too rushed, too expensive. We just waited until we were on shore, and picked a tour then. We saved at least $15+/pp, and had a great time. Instead of going with 70 others, we had just a dozen people on our boat, and they provided transport to and from the port--same service you'd get from the cruiseline, but a lot less crowded. They even drove us to 7 mile beach to kill an hour before the SR City trip.

Highly recommend booking your own SR City trip in Cayman. We went with another provider, but Capt. Marvin is always highly recommended and should be a fine choice.

And, yes, balconies on Caribe deck are larger than standard outside cabin balconies. The difference, as stated above, is the mini-suite has a sitting area with sofa and extra TV, and a full bathtub/shower instead of just a stall. We're excited about our Sept Grand cruise--booked a BC guarantee, and were upgraded to a BA on Caribe.
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Old August 25th, 2001, 10:30 PM
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

That is correct about the balconies not being covered and everyone can look down from above. Last week my son and I had a nice cabin with balcony on Aloha Deck #254 and we could look down two decks to the balconies which extended past ours and were uncovered-we had a very brief shower and I could stay on my balcony but the others went in-I'm not sure if their balcony may have a cover and is bigger or if it extends because of the cabin being bigger.
We were suppose to go to the port you mentioned, also referred to as Costa Maya, but it was cancelled and we went to Playa del Carma. I never did find out the reason but the shopping director said they hoped to be back there soon. The shore excursions were mostly the same and just left from Playa.
I did the Stingray Snorkeling tour and the boat wasen't so crowded but the actual area was because of different tour boats/catamarans, etc. There was plenty of room however and the boats come and go so everyone isn't there all at once. I liked being with the rays and had fun. The water there is only up to your waist or chest. Have a great time-anyother questions about the Grand just e-mail me-glad to answer.
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Old August 26th, 2001, 09:07 AM
linda from NJ
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

Thanks everyone for your help. For those who were on the Caribe Deck was the room big enough to be comfortable? How was closet space. I know the dimensions of the room but I am not good at dimensions. Still trying to decide if we want the Big Caribe (partially ocvered) deck or spend the extra money and upgrade to the mini sutie.
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Old September 7th, 2001, 10:39 PM
Tom Tom is offline
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Default Re: Grand Princess Ports and Balconies

I love the mini-suites on the Grand. We were in one in February and will be in one for our 12/16 cruise. Sadly, they have done away with the suite butler service which was wonderful.
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