We have cruised many times with Princess, and are yet to have a bad experience. Of course, having reached "Elite" level in their loyalty program, we are treated very well indeed, and it does add to an experience that is already ... Read More
We have cruised many times with Princess, and are yet to have a bad experience. Of course, having reached "Elite" level in their loyalty program, we are treated very well indeed, and it does add to an experience that is already great. Why Sun Princess? - She's just the right size, and although there are a few frayed edges, it's like putting on a favourite old pair of slippers - She wraps herself around you, and says "Hi, welcome back - I've missed you!" The crew and service personnel are all first class. They all greet you with a smile, and very quickly get to remember your name. Our cabin steward - Ronaldo - was excellent. A man of few words, but great at his job. Sometimes I think he knew what we wanted before we did!! We were in the "Madeira Suite" on this cruise, which meant that we were able to access "Club Class" dining. The food was not that much different from that served in the MDR, but the ambience and attention to detail were fantastic. Full marks to waiters Tarra, Nikola and the rest - they helped to turn a good cruise into a great cruise.
We ate once in "Share by Curtis Stone" - The food was fine, but I have to say that this restaurant suffers from a poor location. It used to be a Pizzeria, and worked just fine, but as a quality upmarket offering it doesn't work when passengers are continuously walking past your table, and there is a lot of noise from the Plaza area.
Horizon Court was OK, but we did feel that the overall variety and quality of food offered had gone down.
What we saw of the entertainment was fine. A particular shout out to Patrick McMahon - he is a true talent, who obviously loves what he does - and it shows!.
I have to say that the Lifeboat safety drill was an absolute debacle! Whilst we were please not to have to carry our lifejackets with us, having to wait in a hot overcrowded room for almost an hour, only to hear a VERY brief safety message was unacceptable. Some blame must go to those passengers who ambled in, late, as though it didn't matter - one only hopes that they would have moved faster in a real emergency!
Finally, we have just one concern. We were left with the impression that Princess is "dumbing down" it's offering - the gap between it and P and O Australia does seem to be closing.We have always seen Princess as offering a very comfortable experience - moderately luxurious, but without the snobbery that one sometimes finds elsewhere.I hate to say this, but on this cruise, we saw many passengers who frankly would have been better served by P and O Australia - Nowhere was this more evident than in the dining room, where on formal nights, people were being admitted in T-shirts and jeans.
All in all, though, we had a wonderful time, on a wonderful old Lady of the Sea Read Less