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ROYAL PRINCESS - TR - 10/26/19

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This was our first west coast cruise and it departed from San Pedro cruise pier near Long Beach, California.  The Mexican Riviera was the itinerary and it included Cabo San Lucas, Mazlatan and Puerto Vallarta.  In the 7 days there was one at sea day going down the coast and two on the return. The ocean was so calm for all 7 days you thought you were on a lake.

Departure day was totally screwed up.  We had booked our flight from Phoenix to Los Angeles using Princess Air and we were on an American Airlines flight scheduled to depart at 9:15.  Well we were all aboard and ready to go when the flight attendant announced that there was an unexpected smell of alcohol on the plane and we could not leave until maintenance checked it out.  Four maint. guys came on board and walked around sniffing and smelling. An hour later they asked everyone to leave the plane and wait.  A half hour later they told us to go to a different gate and that we would board another plane. There was no plane at the gate and it didn’t show up for 45 minutes.  This new plane finally departed at 12 noon.  The alcohol smell ended up being a male passenger who had totally doused himself with cologne.  What a screw up. We landed in LA around 1 PM.  We had Princess transfers from the airport to the cruise ship. We had to wait almost an hour for the transfer bus and by the time we got to the ship it was nearly 3 PM. Muster drill was at 3:15 and I didn’t get back to my stateroom until almost 4:30 at which time I fell asleep having been up from 2 AM.  Dinner that night was In the buffet and then on to the casino for a short visit.


Since all these ports were new for us I’ll give a brief description.


CABO – This was a tender to shore port and the tenders started at 12 noon. We just wanted to wander around and shop a little so we went to the dining room where they were giving you tender tickets.  We got there at 1:30 expecting that after 1.5 hours everybody who wanted to go ashore was already there and we could just go down to the gangway, NOPE!!!!! We got tender ticket #72 and had to wait 45 minutes. After getting on board the ships tender we had to wait another 30 minutes while the crew tried to figure out how to get an old timer who was semi-comatose and his wheel chair onto the tender.  So we never got to the shore in CABO until 3 PM.  We did some shopping for 30 minutes then stopped at Senor Frogs for a few drinks and then back to the ship. Our dinner time was scheduled for 5 PM.  To summarize, we really didn’t get a feel for CABO but the impression was negative due to the difficulty getting from the ship to the shore.


MAZATLAN – This port had a dock thank God. We had booked an excursion to go to a hotel (Luna) for the day. This include a buffet lunch and open bar, pool and beach.  The ocean water temperature was great, just walk right in and the pool was very nice also the only problem being a few too many kids who were guests at the hotel.  Kids tend to be noise machines. The bus trip to the hotel included an hour stop for shopping. 

Eva went into a lot of jewelry shops looking for some special bracelet for our daughter.  She never bought one but everywhere you could haggle the price down, sometimes close to 50% off there original price.  Some of the sales people even followed you right up to the steps of the bus continually reducing the price.  It left me with a SCAM impression.  The city itself is undergoing a construction boom almost everywhere and most of the building is condos for rich gringos. Overall we had a positive impression of this city.


PUERTO VALLARTA – At this port we also did a 4 hour beach, pool, open bar and lunch excursion. I think it was at a Hilton property.  The bus drive was about 30 minutes through the city to get to the hotel.  This city seemed very civilized and Eva commented that it reminded her of South Beach, Miami. It did make a very positive impression and if I took a land vacation to the Mexican Riviera this is the place I would stay at. VERY NICE

Now for the casino and craps.  This ship, Royal Princess is identical to the Regal Princess which I’ve been on 3 times.  The layout of the casino was identical with the only difference being slot machines.  The craps table was at the end closest to the theater and there was very little traffic walking by. On this ship they opened the craps table at 8 PM every evening as compared to 9 PM on the Regal.  It never opened in the afternoon on at sea days the same as every other Princess cruise I’ve been on.


The craps table was 12 feet long with a dark brown micro fiber and the dice all week were blue. They had the all tall-all small bet with payouts of 30-15-30. The bounce characteristic of the table was very good.  I would rate it at 8.5/10 with a 10 being the best bounce you’ve ever played on.  This rating is with my underhand throw.  I never used a Parr throw when playing but I did use Parr when practicing and the results were good also.


The casino manager, Steve (very nice guy and easy to talk to), introduced himself to me and Eva on the second night of the cruise.  He gave us a complimentary steak dinner at the steakhouse along with a $50 bottle of wine.  This was from Jacque, VP of Casino Operations for Princess, and was a reward for the problem I had at the craps table a year ago on the Regal Princess.

This was greatly appreciated by both of us. We did the steakhouse dinner on Thursday 10/31 which was my birthday. The casino management for Princess cruises is great and I really appreciate that Jacque will thoroughly investigate any issue that you bring to his attention.

My expectations were bare minimum since in the last year and a half I’ve only played no more than 10 hands at craps and my practice rig has been down for the same period of time so therefore no practicing at home.






7 5 6 6h 11 8 10H 9 11 2 8 6 10 10H 5PT 8H 8 10 7OUT

20 throws      1 pt    1 come out win




10 9 3 6 5 4H 7OUT

7 throws

5 8H 6 5PT 4H 7OUT

6 throws        1 pt




7 5 8 9 6 7OUT

6 throws


3 12 10 8 8 9 6 6 7OUT

9 throws




8 9 8PT 9 6 5 4 2 6 9PT 4H 8H 10 8H 9 11 8H 7OUT

18 throws      2 pt



11 6H 8 6PT 8H 5 6 8PT 3 7 6H 3 8 7OUT

14 throws      2 pt    2 come out wins

10/31  NO PLAY




4 6 9 12 9 6 8 10 11 3 5 3 9 4PT 8 6 5 11 6 3 7OUT

21 throws      1 pt


My measely 8 hands resulted in an average roll length of 12.63 throws per hand. I made 7 points in the 8 hands and had 3 come out wins. 4 out of the 8 hands were decent with roll lengths of 14, 18, 20 and 21 throws.  My lack of play and practicing seems to have really affected my dice throwing.


The reason for so few hands is that the table was filled very quickly after opening and I think on the second night I played 2 hands but it took an hour for the dice to come back to me for the second hand.  Everybody at the craps table was a random chicken feeder and other than Eva none of them inspired me to want to bet on them.  Craps is pretty boring under those circumstances so I would color in and leave.  I then kept my eye on the table to see if the number of players would drop enough for me to go back but that never happened.


Overall this was a really good cruise and we both enjoyed it and are planning another cruise on this ship next year in March.


Bob Miller (dicenator)

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Thanks for the report. What a mess trying to get to the ship! We are doing 5 day version of your cruise in Feb. so appreciate the feedback. 

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Howdy Dicenator:  Thanks for doing this report.  We like Princess Cruises too.  Enjoy playing in the casino.  Their tables have an extra bounce so I try to compensate for that.  A belated Happy Birthday.  We are going on the Sky Princess next year out of Brooklyn.  Keep practicing.  Good luck in and out of Casinos.



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