We are a couple in our 60s and this is our fifth Princess cruise. We are frequent cruisers and have sailed on several other cruise lines. We chose this cruise because we could drive into Houston the day of the cruise and park right at the new port. We have read some reviews of problems at the new terminal and with this cruise in general and I decided to write about our experience because we had no problems with either the port or the cruise. There was no fog and there was no problem with illness ( Noro Virus) on our cruise. The weather was great in the ports, it was a little breezy on the sea days but it was February after all. No rough seas this cruise.
We practically walked right on using the the preferred boarding line. We arrived at the port around 1:30 and were able to drive up and drop off our bags. Friends traveling with us were in the longer embarkation line about said that it went very quickly taking maybe 15-20 minutes to the security scanning area.
Our cabin was an inside forward on deck 14. We chose this cabin because of the great price and because we mistakenly though there was access to a forward observation area on deck 14 when we looked at the ship diagram. The hall dead ends into a crew area forward but it turned out to be well located for easy access to the pool deck and buffet on deck 15 without waiting for an elevator. We usually sail in a balcony cabin and were worried about the inside being a disappointment but it was fine. We put the table in the closet and still had lots of storage space. It was so quiet that we slept late if we didn't set an alarm. We had a great room attendant ( Normando) that took great care of us.
The food was good in the main dining room in our opinion but we are not foodies. We had a well located table by the window in the traditional dining for the 5:45 seating. The service was fine. We ate in Sabitini's Italian dining one night and found it just OK as far as food and service went. The pizza, hamburgers and free hand dipped ice cream on the pool deck were all good.
The cruise staff was very good and we enjoyed most of the offerings. We enjoyed two recent movies in the main theater on sea days. There were many unique games and events going on on the sea days and we were busy. We were disappointed in the three production shows. They were not well done and would only interest someone who really liked dance in my opinion. One of the shows was only about 35 minutes long and it was not worth the the effort of arriving early to get seats in the show room. The individual acts, singer, comedy and magic were entertaining and game shows and events around the ship were fun.
Disembarkation was wonderful. We selected walk off and met in a lounge near the gang way to be called in groups. It worked well and there was no crowding or standing in lines. We walked straight through immigration and were in our vehicle with luggage loaded at 8:00 AM.
This was the perfect cruise, every thing went according to plan, the weather was good, the sun was out,
we made all the ports on time, and we stayed well.