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This was our first cruise with Princess having completed 18 other cruises with P&O, Celebrity, Cunard, Royal Caribbean and MSC. We had been somewhat seduced by the hype, the advertising and former passengers feedback plus the fact that it visited, amongst others, Guernsey and Bordeaux (more later). We had never been to Guernsey and have relatives in France whom we had arranged to meet in Bordeaux. Unfortunately, the ship had been delayed by 2/3 hours returning to Southampton, so when we arrived at 11.45 we were very unceremoniously turned away at the dock gates and told to come back in about an hour - so that all the did-embarking passengers could leave the port. No obvious, practical contingency plan. It was 15.00 when we actually got into the terminal building. Then there was the inevitable wait to queue to go through security before joining the ship at about 16.00. There had been an explanatory text, apparently, which we didn't see until on board Crown Princess. All this queueing - little did we know - was a fore taste of things to come. We had an inside cabin - sorry, stateroom is so pretentious - A237. This was excellent! Clean, roomy, comfortable, well maintained and quiet. Superb service from attendant, Glen. We had opted for freedom/my time dining or whatever Princess call it. If you wanted a table for two, without having to queue, you apparently needed to be there when the tables were being set up for 17.30 start. We always went for dinner around 18.00 and never once had a table for two. Sharing a table worked well and we met some really interesting fellow guests. Except for the last night. Two moaning couples, an unfocussed Rumanian waitress and the "March of the Baked Alaskas". Surely this has had its day. The food in the Michael Angelo dining room was always of a very high quality with good portions and plenty of choice. The actual restaurant is low and dark and we found totally lacking in atmosphere - no "buzz" at all The theatre entertainment was very hit and miss. A really good comedy magician and an incredible Robbie Williams tribute act. The rest of the shows we assigned to pretentious twaddle. Show lounges were well used and always good value. Drinks, excursions, photographs and WiFi were, unsurprisingly, expensive. We had breakfast in the Horizon Court and providing you were there before, say, 07.30, there was always plenty of seating. Loads of choice with well prepared and presented breakfast fare of a very acceptable quality. Loads of attentive staff on hand to help and get drinks .Wouldn't have fancied an evening up there though. All pools and poolside areas were busy and well ordered. Only saw one potential flare-up regarding sun-beds. Don't ever let me hear any Brit criticising any other nationality for "reserving" sunbeds. There are plenty of notices around the pool. Why don't the ship's staff enforce them. And where did all these school aged kids turn up from? The "fast food" outlets around the deck are a really good idea. (Shhh, don't tell anyone about the adult only area at the back of the ship!) The 24hr International Café on Deck 5 is an absolute must! Didn't use any of the speciality restaurants. Guernsey: did our own thing. For £1 you can get a service bus that goes all around the island, so you get a good overview. St Peter Port is beautiful. Queueing to get back on ship had to be seen to be believed. Too few tenders I we guess. Bordeaux: They should add $200 to the price of the cruise if you want to go to Bordeaux. It's a 2 hour coach journey each way from Le Verdon. This leaves about 3 hours in the city. Bibao: 2nd visit. This time we went into the Guggenheim. That's an hour of my life I'll never get back! Brilliant building - inside and out - but the "art work" was so pretentious. It wasn't just us. You could tell by the number of audio aids that were left abandoned and the looks and comments of the paying public. The piece de resistance of this trip was moving the pick up point for the shuttle bus. Great confusion and the mother and father of all queues - Princess have really got this off to a fine art. La Coruna: It rained, Shops were dry. Plenty of quiet seating around the ship. Stylish lounges etc. The entertainment staff certainly go the extra mile - especially Lydia and Cruise Director. The farewell event in the central atrium was a huge success and enjoyed by all. They got disembarkation right! Enjoyable cruise and we would definitely go with Princess again.

We warmed to the ship but never really fell in love with it.

Crown Princess Cruise Review by Stanley16

12 people found this helpful
Trip Details
This was our first cruise with Princess having completed 18 other cruises with P&O, Celebrity, Cunard, Royal Caribbean and MSC. We had been somewhat seduced by the hype, the advertising and former passengers feedback plus the fact that it visited, amongst others, Guernsey and Bordeaux (more later). We had never been to Guernsey and have relatives in France whom we had arranged to meet in Bordeaux.

Unfortunately, the ship had been delayed by 2/3 hours returning to Southampton, so when we arrived at 11.45 we were very unceremoniously turned away at the dock gates and told to come back in about an hour - so that all the did-embarking passengers could leave the port. No obvious, practical contingency plan. It was 15.00 when we actually got into the terminal building. Then there was the inevitable wait to queue to go through security before joining the ship at about 16.00. There had been an explanatory text, apparently, which we didn't see until on board Crown Princess. All this queueing - little did we know - was a fore taste of things to come.

We had an inside cabin - sorry, stateroom is so pretentious - A237. This was excellent! Clean, roomy, comfortable, well maintained and quiet. Superb service from attendant, Glen.

We had opted for freedom/my time dining or whatever Princess call it. If you wanted a table for two, without having to queue, you apparently needed to be there when the tables were being set up for 17.30 start. We always went for dinner around 18.00 and never once had a table for two. Sharing a table worked well and we met some really interesting fellow guests. Except for the last night. Two moaning couples, an unfocussed Rumanian waitress and the "March of the Baked Alaskas". Surely this has had its day. The food in the Michael Angelo dining room was always of a very high quality with good portions and plenty of choice. The actual restaurant is low and dark and we found totally lacking in atmosphere - no "buzz" at all

The theatre entertainment was very hit and miss. A really good comedy magician and an incredible Robbie Williams tribute act. The rest of the shows we assigned to pretentious twaddle.

Show lounges were well used and always good value.

Drinks, excursions, photographs and WiFi were, unsurprisingly, expensive.

We had breakfast in the Horizon Court and providing you were there before, say, 07.30, there was always plenty of seating. Loads of choice with well prepared and presented breakfast fare of a very acceptable quality. Loads of attentive staff on hand to help and get drinks .Wouldn't have fancied an evening up there though.

All pools and poolside areas were busy and well ordered. Only saw one potential flare-up regarding sun-beds. Don't ever let me hear any Brit criticising any other nationality for "reserving" sunbeds. There are plenty of notices around the pool. Why don't the ship's staff enforce them. And where did all these school aged kids turn up from?

The "fast food" outlets around the deck are a really good idea. (Shhh, don't tell anyone about the adult only area at the back of the ship!) The 24hr International Café on Deck 5 is an absolute must! Didn't use any of the speciality restaurants.

Guernsey: did our own thing. For £1 you can get a service bus that goes all around the island, so you get a good overview. St Peter Port is beautiful. Queueing to get back on ship had to be seen to be believed. Too few tenders I we guess.

Bordeaux: They should add $200 to the price of the cruise if you want to go to Bordeaux. It's a 2 hour coach journey each way from Le Verdon. This leaves about 3 hours in the city.

Bibao: 2nd visit. This time we went into the Guggenheim. That's an hour of my life I'll never get back! Brilliant building - inside and out - but the "art work" was so pretentious. It wasn't just us. You could tell by the number of audio aids that were left abandoned and the looks and comments of the paying public. The piece de resistance of this trip was moving the pick up point for the shuttle bus. Great confusion and the mother and father of all queues - Princess have really got this off to a fine art.

La Coruna: It rained, Shops were dry.

Plenty of quiet seating around the ship. Stylish lounges etc.

The entertainment staff certainly go the extra mile - especially Lydia and Cruise Director. The farewell event in the central atrium was a huge success and enjoyed by all.

They got disembarkation right!

Enjoyable cruise and we would definitely go with Princess again.
Stanley16’s Full Rating Summary
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Interior
Cabin IE A237
Excellent!
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