Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Views & News

ABOARD the GRAND PRINCESS – Like a comfortable decades-old La-Z-Boy reclining rocker that you couldn’t imagine parting with, the 22-year old Grand Princess keeps sailing on with a satisfied clientele that does not dismiss the benefits of maturity. Only partially refurbished, mainly with new carpeting in much of the ship, the traditional cruise ship ambiance of the public areas obviously suits the tastes of many old-time cruisers. From all appearances passengers on this cruise have enjoyed themselves. …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises on Grand Princess: Origins of the Islands

HILO, Hawai’i – It took Mark Twain ten days to cruise from San Francisco to the Hawaiian Islands on a newly launched passenger and cargo steamer in 1866.  He was immediately charmed upon arrival, writing that “…no other land could so longingly and so beseechingly haunt me.” Consequently, Twain’s travel dispatches describing “the loveliest fleet of islands that lies anchored in any ocean” published in the Sacramento Union newspaper, and later in book form as Roughing It …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Eating Well in the Neighborhood

ABOARD the GRAND PRINCESS – Deciding on where to eat the next meal on a cruise ship is a bit like deciding which neighborhood restaurant to eat at back home. There are choices to be made, and onboard the Grand Princess the choices are numerous. There are two main dining rooms for passengers who like the flexibility of eating anytime within the posted hours. They are on separate decks and appear identical, except for the paintings on …

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Destination Hawai’i with Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Maui Hoops & Beaches

LAHAINA, Maui – Many basketball fans were in town today for the second round of the Maui Jim Maui Invitational tournament being held at the Lahaina Civic Center. Scheduled from November 25th through the 27th, the 2019 teams included BYU, Chaminade, Dayton, Georgia, Kansas, UCLA, Virginia Tech, and Michigan State – a collection of programs that boasts a combined 198 NCAA Tournament appearances, 44 Final Four berths and 16 national championships. (Michigan State lost yesterday to Virginia …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Garden Isle of Kauai

NAWILIWILI, Kauai – As the oldest of the Hawaiian Islands geologically, Kauai is the most highly eroded.  The resulting landscapes of jagged peaks and ridges, canyons, and precipitous cliffs have a prehistoric feeling.  Combined with thick, lush rainforest vegetation, the island appears to be the perfect setting for a movie about earth at a primitive stage, which probably explains why Stephen Spielberg filmed Jurassic Park on Kauai. Spielberg also used Kauai as a background in Raiders of …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Aloha Honolulu

HONOLULU, Oahu – Our stateroom on the Grand Princess is on the 12th deck, also known as the Aloha deck. When the elevator door opens on this deck, passengers are greeted with a hearty “Alo-ha!” Undoubtedly the word in the Hawaiian language best known throughout the world, Aloha has a deeper meaning than hello or goodbye. To Hawaiians, Aloha is spiritual, a way to a harmonious life, and is embedded deeply in the culture. The meaning of …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Specks in a Vastness of Blue

ABOARD the GRAND PRINCESS – During four days at sea en route to Hawai’i, there is time to contemplate the oldest of the world’s seas, the Pacific Ocean, and the place of the Hawaiian Islands in it. Ranger John, former national parks employee, is onboard to help with a seminar entitled “Think Hawaiian Geology is Boring? No Way Baby, It’s Explosive.” It’s commonly known that the islands of the mid-Pacific are the result of volcanic action, the …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Grand Entertainment

ABOARD the GRAND PRINCESS – In addition to a very comfortable bed and bright new carpeting, our compact, and well organized, inside stateroom is equipped with a large high definition TV screen. Upon first turning on the TV, a 14-minute video starts up playing the familiar theme song to the classic TV show The Love Boat, but with new safety lyrics. Several of the original actors from the show charmingly ham it up while welcoming passengers on …

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Destination Hawai’i With Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess: Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay

SAN FRANCISCO – The largest cruise ship in the world when it was launched in 1998, Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess carries 2,600 passengers and a crew of 1,150, making it a standard-size ship compared to today’s megaships with passenger capacities nearing seven thousand. Partially refurbished this past March, details for which I will explore in the coming days, Grand Princess will take five days to reach the first of the four Hawaiian Islands to be visited.  The …

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Heavyweights of the Seas

  I normally arrive a day early for cruise departures, but have made an exception for a cruise out of the Port of Miami. I came three days early this time in order to photograph some representative heavyweights of cruising, megaships of MSC, Norwegian, Royal Caribbean, and Carnival that are currently in port. All are overwhelmingly huge and seeing most of the attractions onboard would require at least a four-day cruise on each. I only have a …

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