The Real Housewives of Cheshire Christmas Cruising: Interview with Hanna Kinsella
By Claire Benktander | 30 Nov 2022
Princess Cruises will feature on ITV reality show The Real Housewives of Cheshire for a Christmas special next week. So, we caught up with Cheshire Housewife Hanna Kinsella to find out more about her experience, her favourite parts of ship Royal Princess and all the behind-the-scenes antics.
Q. What was your view of cruising before this experience? Had you been on a cruise before?
The only experience of cruising that I’ve had was when I was a lot younger. I think I was probably about 14/15 – I went with my parents, so a very different experience!
But yes, it was fabulous. I obviously remember snippets of that holiday but I hadn’t been on a cruise recently or in the last 5-10 years. So it was a bit of a new experience really, but it was great, I really enjoyed it.
Q. What was was your overall experience on Royal Princess like, what did you like the most?
When you get on the ship it’s initially just the wow factor. Royal Princess is massive, it’s so huge you don’t realise – I didn’t realise the sheer size of it!
And it’s brilliant, because there’s just so much to do on the ship. I never felt at one point claustrophobic or like there wasn’t things to do – the restaurants, the food, it was amazing. The entertainment was really good too. I think it’s the sheer vastness of it, but I really enjoyed the whole experience if I’m honest.
Q. How did your fellow housewives react? Did they enjoy the experience?
I think there were a couple of housewives who were a little bit nervous about cruising, just because they hadn’t really done it before – and I think one or two had a bit of a fear of the sea, and fear of boats, but by the end of it we were all saying how amazing it was and how actually it exceeded our expectations.
Even the ones that were a little bit apprehensive about doing it ended up really enjoying it as well. And it was funny, when we stopped at the ports and we’d get off, we were all dead excited to get back on the ship, saying, ‘let’s go back home!’ Because you just get so used to it and it’s lovely. Everyone on board was lovely as well – all the members of staff, the other guests. Everyone was so receptive to having us on the ship and especially with us girls filming, the film crew etc – everyone was really, really welcoming so that was nice.
Q. What what your favourite part of the ship?
I really enjoyed the champagne fountain, that was really good – and I also liked how the captain came out, and then all of the senior members of the crew – I really liked that bit, that was really good. It was a nice icebreaker for all the guests.
Everyone got up and had their pictures taken with the champagne fountain – everyone got really dressed up, I love how much effort everyone makes on the ship! We never felt out of place looking super glam!
Q. Were there any unexpected aspects that you never thought you’d get on a cruise?
I was really impressed with the spa facilities. There was one time where myself and Rachel, one of the other housewives, had been filming in the morning and we had a two and a half hour break or something, and the spa girls managed to get us squeezed in for a treatment.
We went in the spa and had this couples treatment in a double room which was lovely! Honestly, you walk in and you don’t feel like you’re on a ship. It’s a proper, proper spa, so that kind of surprised me a bit! When I walked in I thought, wow, I can’t believe we are on a ship! The treatments were lovely and they gave us a blow dry as well. It’s great, you can get properly pampered on there!
Q. So was there anything behind the scenes that we didn’t see on screen?!
It is difficult, because we were filming all day pretty much, into the evening, for an entire week. The show is three one-hour episodes, so to get all of that footage and all of the funny bits, all the stuff that happened, is very very difficult in that short space of time.
There were all sorts of funny things that happened on there. Tanya was hilarious. She was one of the housewives who had this fear of water and boats. She overcame it and she was fine, but it was dead funny watching her when we had to get on those little boats from the ship to get onto land, oh my god, I laughed so much. She was hysterical on one of them – well not hysterical, but dead scared. It was just really funny, we were all laughing at her. But she managed to get there in one piece!
Q. Do you feel like your initial perception of cruising has changed after doing this?
Yes, definitely. For me, when I was there I was just thinking, as a young mum, I’ve got young kids, and I love the idea of going on a cruise – like with a few of our friends who have kids. It’s just a really nice and safe environment; I felt very safe on it.
If I was there with my friends and kids then there’s things to do for adults, for young people, for the kids. They cater for everyone and I think as a parent it’s nice to have them all on the ship and you now that they’re there and safe, and everything is very secure. I thought the security was brilliant like with the medallions being scanned at every port – the safety element for me was really, really impressive. I thought if I was here with my kids, and my family, I’d really enjoy it and feel at ease that they’re all alright.
Q. So will you take your family on another cruise in the future?
Oh 100%, I definitely will. I’m much more open to it. It was one of those things before that wasn’t really on my radar, I didn’t really think of cruising if was booking a holiday, it wouldn’t have been my first thought. But since I’ve been on that one, yes, 100% I would definitely go with the family.
Q. And what about on a girly holiday?!
Yeah, it’s good fun, and the fact that you get to stop in different places and explore, as well as having all of the entertainment and food and restaurants on board, is brilliant – I thought, what more do you need on a girly holiday?! So it’s fab, it’s got everything.
Q. Had you been to Mexico? Were there any ports in particular you really liked?
I’ve never been to Mexico before and so it was an absolute first for me, and it was lovely, really really nice. I would love to go back because obviously when we were filming and stuff we only got to see a bit of it, but I would like to go and explore.
I thought Mazatlán was lovely, and then the last port that we went to, Cabo, was amazing. So much hustle-bustle, and then we did a cooking class there, which was brilliant.
Q. What are your next travel plans?
I think we are going to hopefully do a ski holiday at some point, because myself and Martin [Hanna’s husband] haven’t been skiing for so long because of COVID-19. I’ll probably go to Dubai again too; my brother lives out there. We’re between here and Mallorca quite a lot too because Martin has got a clinic there.
We are also going to Rome for a long weekend, I’ve wanted to go there for absolutely ages, and Martin bought it for me as a present for my birthday!
Princess Cruises ship Royal Princess will be the setting for The Real Housewives of Cheshire: Christmas Cruising, a new three-part series due to be broadcast on ITVBe and on the ITV Hub on Monday, December 5, at 9pm.