My wife and I are aged 60 and love cruising having been on 14 cruises with various lines. We are out to enjoy ourselves, up early, stay up till the bars close and usually come home worn out, but not on this cruise.
EMBARKATION.-----We could have no quibbles with this,from check in to boarding was fast and efficient.
CABIN-----We had a balcony cabin on Deck 11, it was very nice although it had not been cleaned properly, I found a part used packet of Tamiflu tablets along with some used tissue paper just under the bed. Its not what you want to see but a call to house keeping and a word with the room steward sorted it out.
Dining room, buffet and specialty restaurants-----------Food quality has never been a problem for us on any cruise line, it varies ofcourse from ship to ship but we found the found the food in all the outlets to be fine, but nothing more, certainly no WOW factor that used to be the norm. The exception to this was the specialty restaurants More
which we used 4 times, they were excellent in both quality and service.
ENTERTAINMENT-----------This for us is were our cruise experience took a nose dive. The quality of some of the performers was without doubt the worst we have ever seen, so poor in fact that some of the bar staff passed comment about it. The stage productions were a mixed bag, as they usually are, some very good and some poor. The best venue on the ship is without doubt Club Fusion, very classy. Unfortunately it was never used once for live entertainment, it was set up as a sports bar. They did have music on in there but would you believe it was archive clips of tv performances from yesteryear. On most nights there was interactive shows like the Marriage Game or Whos the Liar along with trivia games and quizzes and yes you've guessed it, at evening prime time. I tackled the cruise director Dan Styne about the quality of the entertainment and he agreed that it was poor but it wasn't his fault as he could only work with what was given. As a parting shot he then said that if we thought it was bad so far then we see should see the comedy magician Thom scheduled for that evening. We did and it was cringe making, simply horrendous. The result of all this was boredom, bored for the first time ever on a cruise ship.We went to bed early on several nights, again a first for us. Our bar bill was a fraction of what it normally is!
DISEMBARKATION--------- We left the ship in Venice, every thing ran smoothly and in a timely manner.
SUMMARY-----------We booked this cruise based on a previous experience with Princess having sailed on the 2nd voyage of the CROWN some years back. When looking to book a cruise there are two things of paramount importance to us---- Itinerary and good entertainment. We presumed the entertainment would be of a good standard based on our previous experience, we were wrong and it ruined our cruise. Its obvious to me that Princess are cost cutting and we will never return. Less