The cruise started out with a flawless, quick embarkation. It took less than 15 minutes to go from security, to check-in, to ship. We arrived at the port around 1:30 pm. Our room was clean and beautiful. The balcony had comfortable chairs and a nice table for 4 people.
We used the anytime dining option which worked well for us. We never waited for a table even though we arrived in the 6:30 pm range. If there was a wait, we would join a group table and enjoy the company of other cruisers. We tried all of the specialty restaurants and the chef's table. We also enjoyed breakfast at Sabitini's which was available for suite passengers. We enjoyed all of the meals and the service was quick and efficient. Our waiter the first night was a bit pushy as he tried to sell drink and coffee cards. Even though we said no, he still kept pushing. We got to wondering if he was working on a commission.
The Chef's table dinner was exceptional. It was our favorite activity the entire cruise. I highly recommend this opportunity. My advice is that when you get on the ship, you run for the first phone and dial reservations immediately. By 2 Pm there was already a waiting list. Do not delay or you will miss out.
Sabitini's was exceptional and the servers were fantastic. The Head Waiter Luciano was attentive, sharp eyed, and pleasant. Nothing got past him!
We enjoyed the English pub lunch of fish and chips, and bangers and mashed in the Wheelhouse bar. This was available on sea days. It tasted just like pubs in Oxford.
The Crown Grill food was great, as was the service. We had a bit of trouble when we checked in and 2 of our party were denied seating. It was formal night and the man did not have a long sleeve shirt, but he did have a tie. The short sleeves were unacceptable. My 13 year old daughter was asked to change into a dress. She was wearing a very tasteful Lily Pulitzer skirt, collared blouse, nice sweater, hose, and dress shoes. She looked very pretty and was dressed better than others in the restaurant. This caused her unnecessary embarrassment. Beware of the conflict between the Princess answer book page 10 and the dress code rules enforced at this alternate dining location. The Princess answer book says that dress code is enforced in the main dining and anytime dining rooms. It never mentions alternate dining locations. We witnessed 6 couples being turned away and the restaurant went 30% empty. If formal dress code is to be enforced the Princess answer book should reflect this in the published guidelines.