We last sailed on Princess about 20 years ago, and it was pretty dismal. That being said, it was the itinerary around Mexico which swung it for us this time after having some poor experiences on Carnival and Costa in recent years. Our ... Read More
We last sailed on Princess about 20 years ago, and it was pretty dismal. That being said, it was the itinerary around Mexico which swung it for us this time after having some poor experiences on Carnival and Costa in recent years. Our favourite lines are Holland America and secondly Norwegian. The Grand Princess was high up in this rating. From embarkation at San Francisco, throughout the cruise until the cruise finish, the professionalism and organisational systems were second to none. The staff At San Fransisco were all mature individuals who were intent on providing a superlative experience from the outset. This was quite a change compared to the shambolic chaos surrounding anything Costa and Carnival.
We arrived at the port whilst passengers from the previous cruise were still disembarking. We were still able to leave our luggage thus allowing us some time at San Fransisco. Getting onto the ship, even though it was peak time was quick and easy.
The ship was in excellent condition having recently been refurbished. Everything was spotless. It was a very laid back atmosphere. No one rushed..... this may be due to the fact of the older age group of passenger! Food was good, although to be honest breakfasts did get a little boring as they never varied the selection. It was also never really hot which was a shame as the quality was good. In all of our 15 plus cruises, this is the only one where we never ate in the main dining room. I could never understand passengers doing this but it gave us the freedom to watch some of the excellent movies and shows which always got in the way of restaurant times. The magician and comedian were so good! Shows quickly filled and often it was standing room only.
We booked a guarantee ocean view cabin which was fairly central on Emerald deck. A good choice for us.
Staff were exceptional and seemed to have a genuine interest in talking to you.... some lines you do get the impression that they go through the motions when talking to you. Not so on the Grand Princess.
As you can tell, I loved this cruise. I would definitely recommend it. It may not be a young persons cruise (that's not to say we were all old codgers on the cruise!). Mexico was wonderful and lived up to our expectations. I have tried to rate the experience below fairly. Dining was marred by the predictability of breakfasts. Entertainment lost points due to the limited programme during the day, but this was a personal choice, although it was great not to get Bingo rammed down your throats! enrichment activities were mainly it seemed to me, shopping advice at ports coupled with the inevitable art auctions. We did not go on any ship excursions but did our own. Didn't use the gym, spa or pools.therefore not rated them. Read Less