We just returned from a 10 day Mediterranean Cruise aboard the Marina. The overall cruise was great, but traveling on Oceania before, there were some areas of disappointment we experienced on this ship compared to our last voyage on the Regatta.
I would first like to start off saying the ship is beautiful. The staterooms are well appointed, the bathrooms wonderful and spacious with bathtubs and a separate shower, the beds plush and comfortable, and nice size balcony with the ability to open so we can share the balcony with friends in the adjacent cabin. Our cabin steward Jonathan was fantastic as was room service. The public areas are beautifully decorated from the Lalique crystal to the custom furnishings and the Murano glassing lighting.
The spa was very nice, tranquil and serene and had a great massage by Dina. The specialty restaurants were great, and the service at Chez Jaques was perfection. In all of the food venues the food was excellent, but the atmosphere and service of the specialty restaurants were far superior then the main dining room or upstairs Terrace Café. The cooking classes are great, if you get a chance book one.
Our previous cruise on Regatta was an incredible trip and we couldn't wait to come back on another Oceania cruise and we were excited to sail on their new ship. This was our 25th cruise and we have sailed on everything from small luxury ships to the mega ships. We prefer the intimacy, the personal touch, and higher level of service of the smaller ships and was one of the reasons we loved Oceania so much.
The intimacy, the personal touch, and higher level of service was just not there on Marina. The ship felt huge and more then 1250 passengers. The crew was not overall happy and not very service oriented. We booked a concierge cabin and this concierge service was the major disappointment of the voyage. Michelle was the concierge for the concierge balcony cabins and not only was she non-accomidating, but rude. We left multiple messages without a return call. On day 4 we called the front reception desk and let them know of the issue. Only after reception emailed Michelle did she finally call back and was very unpleasant. She did not assist with any requests of dining reservations and told me to call dining reservations myself or go to each specialty restaurant and check in with each maitre d. What is the point for paying extra if they do absolutely nothing and give a bad attitude. Do not pay the extra for these class of balconies, as there is no extra service to justify the cost.
The tender service was a complete disaster and so unorganized it took hours to get passengers off the ship while we were docked in Sorrento. It took 3 hours of waiting. They did not run enough tenders and were calling the paid ship excursions and allow them to disembark while most of the passengers who did not book an excursion wait until the very end and waste most of the day and miss the opportunity to go to Capri and miss prearranged tours booked on own and not through the ship. One of the major reasons to book this cruise was because of the ports and nothing is more frustrating then being stuck on a ship and know you are missing a beautiful day. Oceania cannot handle the amount of passengers for tender service on this ship and should either figure it out from the larger ships and their policies and run more tenders or only go to destinations where they can dock and not tender in to port.
Shore excursions were very overpriced and better off booking on your own.
Bigger is not always Better and for Oceania this seems to be true for the Marina in comparison of their smaller ships.