For the first time in many cruises with P&O I felt the need to express disappointment with aspects of a cruise on Ventura earlier this year. Having recently returned from a cruise on sister ship Azura, sailing from Southampton to the Caribbean, I can honestly say that any doubts I had about the P&O brand have been spectacularly 'blown out of the water'. The attitude of the staff, from the cabin steward right up to the captain and everyone inbetween, was first class. All the entertainment we saw was very good, culminating in a performance by none other than David Essex who showed that he had lost none of the showmanship of his 'pop' career in the 70's. Since the heady days of 'Rock on', 'Gonna make you a star' etc., he has performed in the West End and been a member of the Eastenders cast. He rolled the clock back for all of us with a fantastic show.
The transatlantic cruises are just right for slowing down a bit, relaxing, finding a good book. With three sea days before the Azures, then five more before arriving in Antigua, those passengers who hadn't appreciated just how long it took for a ship to sail from one side of the Atlantic to the other seemed restless. As those last five days brought us ever closer and ever warmer, even the more restless seemed to relax. Arriving in the Caribbean, it was certainly worth the wait. Temperatures in the mid eighties, shorts and tee-shirts instead of trousers and pullovers, yes, that's the way to leave the cold autumn behind. On our last day, as we waited to leave the ship and be taken to the airport, the first of the 'new' passengers boarded from the incoming flights: cord trousers, pullovers, anoraks, the holiday had been teriffic but the weather back home certainly wasn't going to be as welcoming as our arrival in Antigua!!
Well done P&O, the Azura crew were fantastic.