Having saved for this cruise for 18 months and using it as an opportunity to commence our retirement, all I can say is that we completed the cruise feeling totally ripped off and generally disappointed with the whole experience. We were so disappointed that after the 3rd day I purchased a cruise diary to reflect our daily frustrations here goes:
Our embarkation went quite smoothly with around a 40 minute joining period from arriving at the port to entering our outside cabin which was small and cramped, the toilet/shower were fine but the space between the wardrobes and the toilet/main door were pokey so if one of us wanted to go to the loo one had to wait to get access to the door or wardrobes. The bed in queen configuration was fine and very comfortable, the only drawback was that there was a light on outside the cabin all night long and the curtains didn't close properly which resulted in several sleepless nights.
My main gripe was the quality and presentation of the food, we were on the 2nd sitting in the Alexandria Restaurant which was quite satisfactory in terms of decor and layout.
The first night we were looking forward to the start of our holiday and our first culinary experience on board what we had been told was good quality cuisine! - What a joke, we were served lukewarm food on all three
courses, the waiter ran out of potatoes & veg by the time he got to me and had to go scrounging left overs from another waiter, I found the food unimaginative, boring, poorly presented and for only the 5 or 6 nights of the 23 on the cruise we ate there mainly this was the standard each time, we ate in the orangery mostly which on occasions resembled a free for all with ignorant people pushing and shoving.
The food in the orangery was if nothing else slightly warmer but by the time one had found a seat one was back to a lukewarm meal, I would say that the average age on the ship was in the 70's and it appeared that in the orangery it was these people that were catered for as nearly all of the dishes were "wet" which didn't require a set of teeth to eat it with.
The only evening meal that we were completely satisfied with was in The Cafe Bordeaux which cost us £6.50 supplement each.
The entertainment was appalling apart from Jimmy James, there was a song & dance group called Headliners who performed 5 or 6 times but they did the same thing each time which got boring after the second time, I think we went to the Curzon Theatre 4 times out of the whole cruise. With 16 full days at sea we were continually looking for something to entertain us but every day was the same. The excursions apart from Barbados & St Lucia had little to offer 2 of our 7 excursions were cancelled some were just a total rip off especially the St Kitts Railway and Nelsons Dockyard in Antigua.
All in all the whole experience has left us feeling let down by P&O who have robbed us of what should have been the holiday of a lifetime. This was not our first cruise but certainly our worst and as a consequence this was our first and last cruise with P&O, we were told by many regular P&O cruisers that the standards have gone down since they were bought out by Carnival Cruises, if anyone is thinking of booking this cruise in the future my advice would be - THINK AGAIN!