Hello, being a new joiner to cruise critic but an old reader I have been hesitant to post or even join the boards. But seeing as I have come back to cruising I felt why not. We booked the April 9th - 16th 2011 on the Crown Princess for our wedding on deck. This included our relatives in the bookings and flights.
We are a couple in our early 40's to upper 40's. This being my husband's first time on a cruise he was extremely ecstatic on the upcoming trip and the excursions. (Unfortunately we delayed in many of the early bookings for excursions and most were waitlisted.)
We decided to arrive the day before embarking on the cruise as to allow for all the relatives joining us from all over the US to arrive around same time and to have a relaxing evening to meet for the first time. I had booked the Days Inn on Broward as their prices seemed reasonable. The hotel was a bit old and seemed to have been updated in some of the rooms. But the room we had was in need of repair.
We booked an early departure to the cruise port from the hotel as we were told we had early ship check-in from our Princess wedding coordinator. That proved to be a bit messy as the hotel says they don't start shuttling until noon. Needless to say we arrived in time when they opened entry for all but were sent thru quite fast and on the ship we went.
The ship was lovely, our state room was wonderful and they had managed to book all 6 of us in a row of rooms. Our luggage was waiting for us when returned from the Horizon Court lunch buffet. After unpacking and freshening up we met with the onboard wedding coordinator to go over the wedding details and to see the location of our on deck wedding that was to be April 14, 2011. The location that was chosen was Sabatini's terrace overlooking the Terrace Adult only pool. A lovely location I may add.
We decided after waiting so long to book excursions on the pre-cruise booking area and finding that most were already waitlisted that we would all play it by ear to see what the group wanted to do or all go our own ways at the ports. (Our numerous sets of walkie talkie two way radios proved to be priceless)
Grand Caymen was wonderful for all the shopping we could want and for my brother to add to his collections of coins from outside the usa. Lunch at the Hard Rock cafe with drinks was a perfect end to the shopping.
Rotan was lovely we only did shopping in the duty free and rode the chair lift to the beach and back. Can't forget the frozen drinks in Fat Tuesdays there and the mahogany goods we found.
Cozumel proved to be a great find for jewelry as we did take a cab into downtown early and spent the morning going thru shops and such. The cab ride to the downtown area was only $7.00
The food was fabulous. We had already pre-booked the Crown Grill for our wedding reception dinner. The Princess wedding department sent us menus for all the restaurants onboard in feb. (I have those on file if anyone wants copies) I can't say enough about the wait staff in the main dining room. We had early 6:00pm seating and our wait person was so very entertaining and funny. She kept us looking forward to the next evening's meal. The head waiter was extremely attentive and accommodating.
We had a lovely ceremony officiated by the Captain on April 14th at 3:30 pm at Sabatini's Terrace with our families and all that were on deck at the Terrace Pool. Then had dinner at the Crown Grill
What can I say about that: Wonderful, Wonderful, And Wonderful. We each ordered something different and the deserts were just marvelous. Our wedding cake was served after dinner in the Crown grill and as much as we laughed at our goofy choice for a wedding cake it was the best cake I have ever had. (Now if I could just get my hands on that recipe... )The staff in the Crown grill was very attentive and made every effort to make our special evening perfect.
Our Group opted for the ez-check for our bags, we all packed and put our bags outside the night before and they were whisked away to be stowed for the morning departure. Off we went without a hitch and on to the airport where we all parted ways to our appointed airlines. Our bags already there and on the planes and we only had to collect them when we arrived home. Such a marvelous option....
The cruise was marvelous the ship the staff and I just can't say enough good things about it. We even booked another cruise on the Crown Princess for December 17th 2011..
I'm sorry if I'm too wordy....