We just returned home today from the best vacation of our lives! We loved the Crown. The ship is clean and beautiful. The service was friendly and consistently first-rate. The show Magic to Do was the best we have seen in 17 cruises. The pools were rarely crowded. We could always find a hot tub that wasn't full. The spa was incredible. And the food was excellent. We enjoyed Crown Grill, Crab Shack and the Gastropub. But we thought Club Class dining was consistently as good as the specialty restaurants. Especially the nightly specials. Wow they were good! We never waited a minute. The service was quick and we could always get a private table for two to talk as my wife and I enjoy doing at dinner. The buffet was small but good. Pizza and ice cream really good on this ship. The Ernesto burger was amazing. Other burgers just ok.
The Sanctuary was just wonderful. We booked it for 4 days of our 10 day cruise. Most comfortable chairs at sea. And when they say the serve "tea" at 3 pm - think of it more as a 4 course small meal - sandwiches of all kinds (the chicken salad was amazing), cookies, then pastries. And then scones. And of course tea.
Now the ship draws an older, quieter crowd. We were looking for a quiet ship that felt uncrowded without a party scene. We wanted to rest, enjoy the views of the water, eat great food, see a few good shows and sleep in a beautiful cabin. We got all that and more. But I can imagine that those that want water slides and lots of new features on a ship and a loud and late night life will be bored on the Crown. Sometimes it was so quiet after 11 pm I felt like we were on a big yacht of our own! We loved it but probably not for everyone.
I sing Karaoke and my wife and I had so much fun. Met wonderful people. I entered the Voice of the Ocean contest and to my shock I won it! It was so much fun. Felt just like the tv show. I highly recommend it if you like to sing at all.
We we stayed in a suite for the first time. E 733 which is a Vista Suite. We fell in love with that aft view! And the wonderful bathroom.
The itinerary was amazing. We loved Eagle Beach at Aruba. Take a taxi and try Coco Loco Beach Bar. Chairs and umbrellas are expensive - $40 for 2. But really nice and clean bathrooms and good food and drinks. An uncrowded perfect beach with amazing water. We find Eagle Beach to be one of the best in the world.
We just shopped in Curaçao. Beautiful city. Played on the beach at Grand Turk and spent an extra day on ship at St Thomas. Grenada and Dominica were highlights for us. Lush and beautiful with so much nature to see and experience. On Dominica we did a private tour all day with Nahgie Laflouf from Go Dominica. We cannot recommmend this more highly! Reasonable price. Great guide. Dominica was devastated by Hurricane Maria. But it is recovering and is already so lush. Nahgie would stop all along the way and pick us fruit and fragrant leaves to smell and identify. We went to Trafalgar Falls, kayaked the freshwater lake, ate a local meal, drove through the rainforest and saw the most amazing views. We snorkeled Champagne Reef - bubbles come up from the bottom from volcanic gas. Amazing! We saw an octopus! He was incredible. Amazing reef and fish life and a 17th century Spanish cannon. And the biggest highlight was Titou Gorge - hard to even describe - where they filmed some of Pirates of the Caribbean. It is a stream thru a gorge. You can jump in from high above or just walk in. Then you have to swim up stream until you reach a hidden waterfall. Unreal!
Princess is classic cruising at its best. This was our first Princess cruise. Hopefully there will be many more!