I'm really sorry for those of you that may not have the best experience on this cruise. I know my DW and I were very much influenced by having our first full suite (B749 Aft) and all the extra benefits involved. We could have been on a seven day cruise to nowhere and we would have had a great time. I will compose this review in an abridged daily log format.
We arrived at FLL on time the afternoon before embarkation and after collecting our luggage used the courtesy phone in the baggage area to call the Days Inn in Hollywood. We booked this hotel because they accept Wyndham reward points and they offer free pickup at the airport and free shuttle to the ship. Also if you have a car, they are one of the few hotels that offer free onsite parking (secure) while you are on your cruise. The van driver picked us up within ten minutes of our call and we were on our way. The hotel was quite new, very clean, and within walking distance of a shopping mall and several restaurants. We immediately made a reservation for the 11am shuttle to the cruise port and received a blue confirmation ticket. We walked to a TGI Friday's and ate dinner while watching the Masters golf tournament on TV. On our walk back we stopped at the new Holiday Inn across the street and took advantage of the two for one happy hour running until 7:00pm. The next morning we had a leisurely complimentary breakfast that even included hot egg and sausage biscuits and relaxed until time to depart for the ship. The nine passage van arrived right on time and towed an enclosed trailer that accommodated everyone's luggage. Day One - Embarkation and First Evening We were fortunate that the Star Princess docked at Pier 29 and was the first stop for our shuttle. With seven ships in port including the Oasis of the Seas, I was worried that the traffic could be a problem but that was not the case. We were dropped off right in front of the terminal and our one large bag was checked with a friendly porter. We carried the remainder of our luggage into the terminal and were directed to the priority boarding line for bag screening and check-in. A few short minutes later we had our cards and were aboard and in our suite. After meeting our steward, Gerald, we departed for lunch. Outside the Capri dining room we asked a staff member if lunch was being served in any of the three dining rooms. Her reply was that no lunches were being served in a dining room and we should go up to the Horizon Buffet. Well, I didn't quite believe her because I knew the new Bon Voyage program was in progress and they were going to have a dining room open for that. Sure enough we went up to the Portofino dining room and were warmly welcomed by the Asst. Maitre 'd and seated for a great lunch. We had our first roll call Meet & Greet immediately following muster at the Outrigger Bar on the Lido deck and had a good turnout. It is always great to meet the people you have been communicating with over the past year. Each night we attended the pre-dinner happy hour held in Skywalker's Lounge for Suite/Elite/and Platinum Card holders. This is held every night from 5 to 7pm except the night of the Captain's Circle party. There is one premium drink offered for $5 and the hors d'oeuvres very much upgraded from the canapEs served at other venues. We had the best service and food that we have ever experienced on a cruise ship. For the first time, we never once entered the buffet line for any meal. We had anytime dining and at the first night's dinner we asked for a table for two and were assigned a great pair of waiters. We had such a great time that we asked the Maitre 'd to give us that table for the rest of the week and he was happy to comply. Several times during the week the head waiter offered dishes not on the menu including one of my favorites, escargot. After dinner we went up to Lido deck to watch Sherlock Holmes on MUTS. We immediately noticed that there is less seating area on the Star than we had last year on the Crown so lounge chairs are at a premium. Wait staff walked around and served popcorn, the movie was good and the sound system worked great.
Wonderful space, quiet, and beautifully appointed.