This cruise was a treat for my wife's 50th. She was worried about being on a ship for such a long time ... and she had never been to New York. She has now changed her mind.
Firstly we were upgraded from Brittania to Princess Grill so ended up with a much bigger stateroom. This meant we had a bath and shower, not just a shower; we had a much bigger balcony with two deck chairs and loads of space; we received a whole bottle of sparkling wine and strawberry chocolates (well four of them); and fresh fruit bowl each day. And two small chocolates each evening. Magical.
The enrichment program consisted of speakers such as Lord Howe, a US diplomat - Chase Untermayer; Bill Miller - an expert on cruise ships and various other talks on skyscrapers etc. There was also a team of Rada actors, dancers, bridge demonstrations etc. Clarendon Fine Art had various paintings demonstrated and also gave a talk on a certain Rolf Harris. Virtually every night we received a champagne invitation to some event or other.
The food, in my opinion, was more hit than miss - and yes the service in the Kings Court was a bit plain. However, I'm not sure how you can provide four separate cooking areas in a better fashion? In any event, one could always go for breakfast, lunch and dinner in your assigned restaurant - in our case the Princess Grill. I really enjoyed the service. The staff learnt our names and always addressed us properly. If we dropped a napkin they were quick to pick it up - and if there was something wrong with the food, they were quick to sort it out. I could moan about the outlandish portion sizes - but that would be churlish.
We had fog for three days which was disappointing and the planetarium had broken down :-(
The brochure had shown a picture of people exercising in the sunshine on one of the top decks - however the fitness classes were held in the bowels of the ship. People seemed to be using the gym at all hours - treadmills, weights etc.
When the fog lifted we could see whales, dolphins, seals etc - great.
The evening shows were fun - not necessarily to everyone's taste.
There was a smell of cigarettes around the ship - I don't know if people were craftily lighting up in unauthorised areas.
Given that we were in Princess Grill we did have exclusive use of the terrace on deck 11 - cool. You could also go up to decks 13 and 14 to relax and observe the view (bit windy).
Our "roomkeeper" seemed to be working extremely hard but always greeted us by name and asked if we were okay. Our room was always tidy and nice each evening. Brilliant service.
The staff in the Princess Grill were friendly and also worked hard. I wish them well.
Overall, I would do it again, and my wife, who previously was a little bit worried, wants to do another cruise!!! (not sure the bank manager is keen)