As 2004 winds down, 10 cruise ships this year have scored perfect 100s on the Centers for Disease Control's notoriously difficult vessel sanitation inspection. Princess was one of two grand winners with a pair of honor roll members -- Pacific Princess and Caribbean Princess. Holland America was the other -- Oosterdam and Westerdam, two of its "late model" Vista-class ships, also received top ratings.
All cruise ships that call at U.S. ports are subjected to two visits from the CDC's Vessel Sanitation team (more if they flunk and have to be re-tested). The inspection is rigorous, occurring throughout the entire vessel and addressing issues ranging from food safety to cleanliness to environmental health.