My wife and i have been on Princess Cruises twice in the Caribbean. Both times we went on Crown Princess from San Juan. We loved it. We are in our 50s and booked Anytime Dining so we could sit by ourselves or with different people each evening depending on how we felt Crown princess is huge but that means there is something for everyone. I would definitely recommend. We are going with Princess again next year. Good luck. Joh.
We have booked our first cruise this year and followed the advice given to us by friends who cruise regularly. Firstly, decide on whether you want formal (dressing up) dining or freestyle this helps you choose the cruise line. Secondly, do you want a cruise ship with children on it. Thirdly, how large a ship do you want. We found these three tips helpful. We also read the reviews on this site to help us.
My wife and I are in our 40's and no longer take our grown up kids. We swear by Royal Caribean (we've also done Ocean Village). I personally would recommend you book cruise only from Miami (eastern or western Caribbean) in January or February as they are the driest and hurricane free months with good but not too extreme temperatures (up to 30 degrees 70's tp 80's). You can book direct flights and choose a downtown or South Beach hotel for 2-3 nights pre cruise. If you love to shop for diamonds to eastern Caribean, if you can't make your mind up to back to back eatern and western. Jan & Feb will bring some kids onboard but they are so well catered for they really do not interfere with adult only fun. 2 formal nights are fun and the rest just sets simple standards stopping people coming to evening meals in shorts and flip flops, but the rest of the day is as casula as you like. Set evening meals are a highlight we travel as a couple and always get put on a table with other couples usually American and have had some fantastic company for our meals - never had a bad experience - American cruisers are not stuffy and I find far more welcoming and sociable. We're trying another angle in Jan 09 12 nights Caribean starting from New York which may also make a good first cruise. I am told princess and carnival or good too but can't personally recommend them.