This was our first cruise with Princess Cruises to celebrate our 50th anniversary. We have sailed between 20-25 cruises on various ships and companies, including Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, Holland America, NCL and Costa. I have always heard how nice Princess is and the itinerary on this cruise made for lots of stops at places that we always wanted to see including France but more on that later. We started off in Southampton where we arrived two days before the cruise. Once getting to Southampton by Heathrow Airport Cabs we stayed at the Moxy Hotel very close to the Ocean Cruise Terminal. Checking in at the terminal was very quick and easy on the day of sailing and we boarded the ship in no time. My first impression of the ship docked was it's size and that it needed some outside painting. Once inside we were quite pleased with the layout and look of the ship. We had booked an Aft cabin on the rear of the ship, B753. A premier stateroom with an obstructed view. The view was great and two people could easily sit beside one another with a great view of the wake. The obstruction was a support beam on the side that jutted out maybe 18 inches and in no way did it bother our view. We were very happy with our room considering it's age. The bathroom was tight as was the shower, but kept clean by our attendant. The bed was on the small size and I'm a tall man. One night I rolled out of the bed in my sleep and gave my head a good wallop on the nightstand. We were surprised by a very nice bouquet of flowers that lasted the whole cruise and was a gift from Guest Services for our anniversary. Congratulations was also displayed on the Medallion screens when we signed on. Nice touch Princess.
The food on the cruise was not quite up to par compared to Celebrity and Holland America. The best meal was at the Steak House restaurant onboard. Extra charge ,however, great Filet Mignon.
We didn't attend any shows in the theater as we were to tired at night after so much walking. We enjoyed every night at The Crooners Bar and the excellent service of head bartender Fidel who could make us our Chivas Boxcars martinis everyday. It was certainly nice sitting at the bar listening to piano music and having conversations with other cruisers.