Every Year we have traveled to All inclusives throughout The Caribbean, and Mexico, so we thought we would take the plunge into the Cruising world for a change. Friends of our have recently returned from the Crown Princess and raved about their experience so we decided to give it a try.
The Ship itself was very nice and very large. I really thought we would feel trapped on a ship, but never felt that way at all. Our room was a little scary at first, we were not used to the condensed room-styles that cruise ships offer, but once we unpacked all of our luggage, it seemed that there was room for everything. We were absolutely amazed by the cabin stewards, they seemed to magically appear when we left the room and when we returned the cabin was spotless. We were so used to having hotel maids banging at our doors, or having to chase after them in regular hotels, so this was a very unexpected and welcome surprise.
The food was actually very good. We ate all over the ship and experienced every type of food and service that the ship had to offer. Our favorite was the Steak house and Sabatinis. We enjoyed the buffet on the days that we wanted to just relax and just dress casually. We were a little alarmed by the cover charges, but quickly learned that they were well worth the extra expenditure.
We quickly found that the major difference in land based all inclusives and the Cruise ship experience was definitely the entertainment. Most All inclusives provide very lack luster, low budget entertainment. We found the entertainment to be fantastic the majority of the time. We were not too fond of the Singing and dancing revues so we opted out of those. There were a pair of comedians~Alfred and Seymour who we really enjoyed. The highlight for us was the Hypnotist Fernandez. We watched the first show, loved it and returned for the later show. My husband volunteered and was hypnotized. I honestly laughed until I cried. It was brilliant.
We really enjoyed the ports of call, it was really nice to be as busy or as relaxed as we felt in each destination. We love to snorkel and dive and found plenty of great areas to do this. Our favorite spots were Grand Cayman and Cozumel. We have our own gear, so we just arranged our dives locally. There was one ship tour we were interested in, but it was sold out and extremely expensive so we were not really disappointed that we missed it.
All in all we really loved our first Cruise and will probably become more avid cruisers in the future. We did feel that we needed a holiday after the holiday as we were so active throughout the cruise. Next time we will book a few days after the cruise to wind down. Bravo Princess~Fantastic crew, Fantastic experience.