This was our first Oceania cruise...primarily Celebrity and Princess previously. We chose the Marina for the smaller passenger size, the age of the ship (we like them new!), the advertised age of the passengers, and the restrictive smoking policy. The Marina certainly did not disappoint!
Our room had an extended balcony which made everything seem bigger. The showers have been discussed at length in previous reviews; they are SMALL, but we managed. The tub is a waste of space except to dry swimsuits (etc). I heard that they will gain glass enclosures in November affording a second showering option. That will make a huge difference. Other than that the bathrooms are beautiful with plenty of towels. This was the first cruise I didn't have to ask for extra. Same for hangers! The beds are very comfortable, drawers could be deeper but I found a place for everything.
The food was comparable to any upscale restaurant especially in the specialty restaurants. We never had a bad meal or poor service. Loved the Waves Grill, fast, casual and tasty. Milkshakes and smoothies are a great addition! Tea every day was a wonderful option, most other lines only have tea on sea days.
Shows were good, about what I expected. We didn't check out most of the bands but what we did hear was adequate. Not a fan of the group in Horizons. Some reviewers have mentioned loud music by the pool, but we never noticed that. The cruise director (Dottie) was great, we enjoyed team trivia with her almost every day and her corny jokes make you smile. We spent some time in the casino and actually came out ahead for the trip!
We mostly took independent excursions, but the 2 we booked through the cruise line were good although a lot of money for what you got. Next time we will skip that. The port selection was fabulous, although St Barts on Sunday with most shops closed was a disappointment. But it probably saved us money! The whole tender experience (first 3 ports) was less than stellar but it allowed us to visit places we couldn't get to otherwise.
So glad we attended the Cruise Critic "meet and greet" the first full day. Met many amazing new friends which enhanced our experience. Loved that there were no formal nights, no photographers and no smoking in the casino and on the balconies. The crowd was primarily between 55 & 75 which suited us just fine, although we are at the low end of that range. Nice fitness center; deserted on port days (we didn't try the spa) and Baristas (coffee bar) was perfect for those mornings that I missed all the breakfast options.
The only negative about the ship itself is that it shakes and shudders greatly when docking/anchoring and reversing the process. There would be no way you could sleep through that, at least not on our deck (7).
We will definitely cruise on Oceania again! Just need to save up a little extra money.