First let me say that this was a "last minute" cruise for us. We had booked another cruise (Northern Europe) but PCL offered a last minute deal for us to give up our cabin which we couldn't refuse! So, a lot of "running around" to get to know the ports right quick!
I will attempt to be as fair as possble. I have sailed three times with PCL the rest with Carnival. In comparing the Europe experience between CCL and PCL, CCL wins hand down (Freedom August 2007)
I will attempt to make this review painless for you so I will just type/review as I recall.
Spa - did not use
Jogging track - it's truly a joke. You have to walk 16 times around the very small area where people are playng golf to complete one mile. We decided to go to Promenade Deck 7. Though u really can't jog - it was great!
Ship itself - OK - nothig spetacular.
Entertainment - due to its port intensiveness - we did not do much regarding this - mostly did the Movies under the Sun for Tina Turner's concert and Iron Man II - However, audio not the greatest. :(
Additional entertainment - nice violinist who played throughout the cruise - a few jugglers and a contortionist (?) not sure if that is what it was but she was pretty neat
Food - OMGosh! This was an experience. A bad one! :( DaVinci one nite and it was enough. The waiter goofed up three orders in a row. Ours - the couple next to us and the couple next to them. Food was mediocre to say the least. I understand about taste buds; choices; etc. etc. but... trust me, if you are cruising for the food, stay home! This was truly awful. The soups were the only things that were actually good. Food was too bland; not sure if they thought because of the age group (average 55 oldest around 80) but I heard many a senior complain that this food was "awful"!
However, the Internatinal Cafe on Deck 5 was more then accomodating. They offered much better sandwiches; deserts (all free) except for a few items like specialty coffees; etc.. Gelato - 3 scoops for $1.50 this is unbelievably delicious!! It tasted better then the Gelato we had in Rome. My husband went back several times. I did also :)
Much of curry was served; mexican two lunch buffets; still nothing to brag about.
Compared to the meals served on the Carnival Freedom during our Med/Greek Isles cruise; there is no comparison. Or let's just say CCL was truly serving up the best tasting and varied food at sea compared to PCL's Crown. :(
Cabin - Very nice. Our steward Damakor - Outstanding!!! Very sweet; non-instrusive; always there when we needed him. The walk-in closest was a very nice touch. Balcony as always, small but nice.
Nice touch with the TV guide for the entire cruise along with the flat-screen TV and of course the Fridge.
People who cruised - As I mentioned - average 55 to 80. Some teens; a few younger ones. Some couples in their 30's and 40's - Overall everyone seemed very nice. We met different groups of people while waiting in line for attractions such as the Blarney Stone - Hi Lettie - hi Mr. Photographer! :) and continued to enjoy passing them at different occassions on the ship.
Staff - This was the best - They all seemed to sincerely want to help you. They went out of their way to acknowledge us at all times. The Pursers' were outstanding. Never saw huge lines; this is a good sign :) Valeria - from Argentina was very sweet; seemed a bit serious at first but it is mostly the "professional" in her. The staff at the International Cafe was also outstanding.
All in all, we enjoyed the cruise and the cruisers around us.