We just returned from a 7 day cruise on the Crown Princess. In no particular order:
Size - This ship is pretty much the same as other Grand class except they've added an additional deck which means 600 more passengers. But the public facilities remain the same .. theater, dining rooms, bars, buffet. We could sense the crowd. We also talked with some senior crew and were given to understand they added just 25 more crew. While it wasn't bad for a Caribbean event where folks are scattered to the winds, on a transoceanic cruise it would have been miserable. People would have to line-up 30 minutes in advance to get into the theater. Bottom line - ok for a short cruise, but not for a long one.
Debark - one of the smoothest we've encountered. People queued in various public rooms, then went from there. We even noticed a crew member asking people not to cluster in the main passageways - that's refreshing to see the crew ask people to move about and not jam up.
Cruise staff - this was one of the better staffs. Kelvin is a hoot. I can't speak to his managerial talent, but as an MC he's great. Ditto with his subordinates.
Food - we did notice a change in the menu from our last Princess cruise (last May). Don't know if this is parochial to Crown or Princess in general. It just seems to me that that quality has gone down a bit. In the past we got however many lobster tails we wished. This time it was one. We could ask for more. Also the quality of the prime rib was down.
Chef and Maitre'D - they usually put on a cooking demonstration. Most often it's just that - boring. But these two put on a show that had folks laughing. Very refreshing.
Sanctuary - this is the first ship we've been on where Princess set up a sanctuary zone - an area by the spa as a quiet zone. But they charge $10 for 4 hours or $20 for all day. Give me a break. If they want an area where adults can get away from kids, then make it an adult only area. They don't charge extra for the kids area where adults are supposed to avoid so why charge for an adult quiet area. We really thought it was the height of tacky.
Entertainment - good as we've come to expect of Princess.