After boarding in Sydney on Mar 30th, I was pleasantly surprised at the cabin size, and the nice window.. Good shower, very small bathroom, but lots of floor space in the cabin. Trip over was rough, and the food throughout the whole ship was sub standard. Both the buffett and dining room food was served lukewarm to cold, not even the coffee was hot. Service was slow, it appeared to me that there were not enough staff to cater for passengers correctly. Not having a separate cinema was a pain, and lots of shows were starting at 11pm, far too late. Calibre of entertainment was mediocre, lots of jazz, and blues music, which is not to everyone's taste.
Outbreak of gastro on board when we hit Dunedin, which did not surprise me, due to the temperature of the food in the baymaries, or should I say, lack of.
I consider the Pearl to be very over rated, poor service, cold food, understaffed, and would not consider doing another cruise on her, or for that matter with P & O.. I will go back to Royal Caribbean for my Honolulu cruise next year.The inside temperature of the ship was extremely cold, in both the bars,dining areas, and all of the enclosed rooms.. Akaroa was fantastic to visit, much like the Bayof Islands in the north. Picton was also very nice, good food, and great wine.