This was our first 'proper' cruise, having only ever been on a much smaller ship on the Red Sea. We were not disappointed.
The Crown Princess was massive and it took a while to get our bearings and find our way round.
CABIN: Our inside cabin was small but perfectly adequate with lots of storage/hanging rails and it was kept immaculate by the room steward and the bed was turned down each night with chocolates on the pillow.
Each cabin was equipped with a safe, TV, fridge and hairdryer.
FOOD: There was so much choice. Dinner was easy as we had opted for the second sitting at 8.15 in the Bottecelli restaurant each night. This was waiter/ess service and we always had the same table and waiter & waitress who were totally professional and a credit to the company. Nothing was too much trouble for them. You could have 3, 4 or even 5 courses if you wanted from the menu which changed daily (there were some regular items on the menu every day). The food was delicious and we could not fault it at all. You could have dinner in the self service restaurants if you wanted or pay extra to eat in 2 speciality restaurants onboard although we didn't see the point in paying extra so didn't try them. Breakfast & Lunch could be taken in the restaurant or in the 2 self service restaurants and there was always plenty of choice, in fact it was always difficult to decide what to have. Burgers, Hot Dogs & Pizza were also available 24/7. Did I mention the Patisserie where you could indulge in the fancy cakes & pastries and have a coffee or hot chocolate (this was the only place where you had to pay for hot drinks).
We did hear complaints about the food but we found nothing to complain about at all and I'm a 'fussy eater' !
ENTERTAINMENT: There was so much to do. A newsletter (Princess Patter) was delivered each night to the cabin and contained all the activities for the following day. If you didn't want to sunbathe, swim or read, there was an open air cinema (latest releases), Mini golf, A gym that would put many onshore to shame, Theatre, Casino, Library, and Spa. There always seemed to be some form of entertainment taking place, whether it was a piano player, band, singers or comedian. Then there was the regular quizzes or lectures in the theatre. There was no time to be bored.
EXCURSIONS: I cannot comment on the organised excursions as we made our own arrangements whenever we docked but the ship provided plenty of information about the places to visit etc (delivered to the cabins). The company were very good at providing all sorts of information to its passengers throughout the cruise including reminders to put clocks back or forward.
DISEMBARKATION: This was very well organised, after all you cannot have 3000 odd people trying to get off the ship at the same time. The waiting areas were supplied with tea & coffee facilities and it was a very smooth operation from our point of view.
GENERAL: We did hear complaints, one man complained that he was being treated like cattle but all we were doing was waiting for the dining room to be ready for us to eat (the first sitting hadn't quite finished) and there were moans about the lifts not responding straight away so having to wait. But this was down to the volume of people trying to move around the ship. Some people will moan about anything. We didn't have any complaints at all - oh just one - my pillow was too soft !!!