As a seasoned cruiser of some 32 cruises this is my first review, on this occasion I travelled with my friend John a first time cruiser on a ship I have been on three times before.
Embarkation was efficient except for being told to wait when we could have boarded immediately, the room was ready when we arrived and we had an excellent steward, the cabin was a little bit noisy being over "Starlights" but that is what you get for buying a late deal but on the whole very happy.
We had a table for eight in the Atlantic restaurant and had a nice mix of people, the waiting staff was excellent as usual as was the choice and quality of the food. The new system of plaiting the main courses did raise a few comments but I found the food was served very quickly and always hot.
The option of going to Cafe Jardin for an evening meal was discussed but none of us felt the menu or the location very appealing, this was also the feeling about the Ocean Grill. I had lunch and breakfast in Cafe Jardin a couple of times which was fine but did not find the afternoon menu tempting with baguettes and Panini's being the bulk of the menu.
The Plaza was always busy as usual in general I thought the food at lunchtime very good but felt the salad bar was a bit limited, and I don't understand why P&O insist on serving "fish sticks" instead of just fish they look and taste cheap.
As for the entertainment I very rarely go to the shows Etc but the general comments about them were favorable particularly the magician, and the same came be said for the bands and singers on board.
We had bad weather for the two days with the third being unsettled and felt the entertainment officers could have done more to help pass the time especially in the mornings, the films were of the same high quality but 12.30 did seem a strange time of the day to be showing them especially as some were only shown once.
I love my games and quizzes and felt this year was the worst cruise ever. The battle of the sexes quiz which used to be one of the high points of my day was the most boring quiz I have ever been to, the entertainment officer who ran it was appealing, 45 minutes to do 20 question and two rounds of "catchphrase" were mind numbing and as for day we played charades and pictionary when one half of the quiz has to sit and wait for the other to take part was beyond me.
On the 60's night and the carnival night there was a deck party and while it was fine if you enjoy dancing but with all the entertainment staff taking part but felt one of them could have been running a game or quiz for an hour to give passengers a bit more variety.
In conclusion not a bad holiday but did feel the entertainment department could have done a great deal more and being told the department was one member short for most of the cruise is not good enough, I have always found that if you have a good cruise director you have a good cruise, on this occasion he was conspicuous by his absence.