n sitting down to write this year’s Best Cruise Value Awards it is hard not to think back on the 32 years Ocean & Cruise News has been reviewing cruises. During this time we have seen many changes in the cruise industry. Some of the lines and most of the ships that used to win our awards and set the standard for success are long since gone. Over these years I have read countless report cards, letters and emails from long time cruisers saying “it isn t what it used to be”, and they are right. While in most cases their comment were mourning the loss of some feature of perk they enjoyed, in more ways than I can count, cruising has grown and evolved into a truly amazing vacation experience. The ships today are larger, smoother sailing, and safer. They feature spacious cabins, balconies and amenities you could only dream of all those years ago. No longer is there one dining room with a revolving menu, a midnight buffet as your only after dinner food option, or an evening show performed in two seatings mostly by the crew.