Chose this cruise as it worked with our travel plans for larger vacation and took advantage of end of year offer as had cruised on Princess before.
We drove to cruise terminal and parked as had driven to Florida from NY with stops along the way in Washington, DC and Charleston and norther Florida and Southern Florida. Easy to park in garage but there is construction work in terminal area so you need to plan to allow time for that. Signage could be better in Port but we figured out where to go.
Had not scanned passports into Medallion prior to leaving as had no idea how to accomplish this and Princess never sent information plus would not have received before we left anyway. Took all of five minutes. Only about 50% of people arriving same time as us had done what needed for medallions, some never had heard anything about it. There were plenty of Princess people in terminal and when we boarded telling you about events to learn how to use Medallion but not clear to most people that you needed internet package to use. Plus you were given a printed card indicating either anytime or traditional dining and which dining rooms were designated. You needed to bring at least for the first 2 days.
We had booked deluxe balcony to have a larger room than standard balcony that we had on Ruby Princess on Eastern Caribbean cruise previously. This room and balcony were not larger in fact I think they were smaller and way smaller than deluxe balcony on Norwegian Breakaway which had been our most recent cruise about 2-3 years ago. That balcony included 2 lounge chairs. Anyway the bed was comfortable so must have new mattress. The room decor and furnishing were drab, totally brown/beige tones, zero color. We had sort of a lumpy love seat, not a couch. Bathroom tiny but included bar soap and we also had stationery pack.
Off to explore ship and locate the dining rooms for Anytime dining. Went to check-out books in library. This became the joke of the cruise with everyone we spoke to, as it was "the library without books". Literally empty cases. It looked like they had put books left behind in a few cases. They did have good selection of puzzles and games. Good thing I had 4 books with me, both in print and more on my Kindle.
Off to buffet for lunch. Only ever visit buffet for lunch to have salad. One day had burger from the grill area. Only used the two dining rooms for dinner and had breakfast in MDR, except for disembarkation morning. Symphony seemed overwhelmed when people headed there after the captain champagne event. Did have several fine meals and had nice service in the dining rooms once they sorted out the seating every night.
We brought 2 bottles of wine on and so only visited one bar on ship. Embarkation Day we found Vines and enjoyed that as not in a corridor/pass through area. We enjoy sitting on balcony with glass of wine and reading.
Not big on entertainment on ship in general beyond MUTS. We did see comedian one night and one night enjoyed hearing jazz band while in Vines. Shame that when we went to hear them in other bar area you could not hear because it was essentially a corridor and hordes of people heading to play bingo. Poor choice to have them play there. We gave up on that quickly. Never went to any shows, games or casino.
Shame no promenade deck to walk around ship exterior. We did use the track on 18 and watched the pickleball players a few times. Plus we used the putting green and golf driving cage. Husband went to gym several times. Clean and enough machines. Shame the sauna and steam room are now only available in spa.
Hot tubs on ship which we used once were only warm tubs. One afternoon they showed most recent Spiderman film which was so loud it woke my husband up from his nap.
Having been to St. Thomas before we would have gone on excursion to St John but all sold out and not motivated enough for take/ferry/taxi so we went up the cable car at the new port, walked into town to browse around and have a beer. Enjoyed Princess Cays, at least did not get a norovirus as we did at the Turks/Caicos stop a few years ago. Have been to St Maarten several times so just walked around a bit and had a beer. We find the days of quality shopping in Caribbean are long gone.
Rainstorm mid-day on the last sea day so we went to see afternoon film Yesterday which we had seen in theatre. Did appreciate the opportunity to see Joker in small theatre and on deck to see Judy, Ford vs Ferrari, which we had also seen. Watched Harriet in my room the afternoon that was so windy.
Overall a relaxing week and that was all that we expected/planned.
Not sure which level of deluxe balcony it was but much smaller than deluxe balcony on previous Norwegian Breakaway cruise. Did not seem any larger than balcony we had on previous Eastern Caribbean cruise on Ruby Princess a few years ago. Clicked DE but have no idea what code our balcony was
Have been to St Maarten previously both on ships and at hotels so not much interest in touring around. Off the main shopping street you can still see hurricane damage. Took sea taxi back to ship, very convenient
Very nice day and did not get norovirus as we did several years ago when Princess Eastern Caribbean stopped at Turks/Caicos - Jimmy Buffet Margaritaville beach/shops/pool.
No problem finding lounge chair in shade. Enjoyed fruit and salad at the buffet.
Have been to St Thomas several times. Excursion to St John sold out so just went up cable car by the port and went into town for a walk around/browse/enjoy a beer. Back to ship early to relax and watch Sting concert on big screen on pool deck