Oceana at 10 years old is a well founded and maintained ship, cabins are beautifully appointed and our steward Pankaj was telepathic, always on hand when we needed him, worked hard and always smiling.
We were waited on hand and foot - didn't even have to collect our luggage in Barbados it was delivered from plane to cabin and were made to feel welcome on arrival.
The food, standard of catering and organisation was for the most part faultless (minor complaint about hot plates for cold food on the buffet and the coffee not great).
Lunches were superb in all venues and our dinners in the Ligurian (Freedom Dining) were awesome. Dinner at Cafe Jardin was not worth paying the extra for - lunches there were excellent but the dinner menu was the same for two weeks and the service poor in comparison to the main restaurants.
Sightseeing was superb although in EVERY destination you would do better going ashore and taking one of the many tours on offer at half the price - most people like an easy life and Oceana's staff certainly provided that.
Entertainment on board included Fogwell Flax (so very funny), a brilliant concert pianist, after dinner speaker Tommy Docherty (who was amazing and fielded questions from the audience with a true sense of humour), with shows and high octane dancing – they did really well. Daytime at sea there was so much to do we found ourselves racing from ballroom dancing classes to windows 7 seminar, go-yoga, how to improve your photography to talks and films on the Panama Canal.
Which brings me to the highlight of the tour - The Panama Canal. Oceana had an expert historian on board with a wealth of knowledge, he kept us enthralled all day with his commentaries – a really fantastic experience.
Now comes the downside of our trip Ionithermie:
I went along to one of the many seminars ‘how to deal with those troublesome fatty areas on your body’ The answer was Ionithermie currently not available in the UK, it’s a treatment with special clay and electrodes and you can lose up to 8” Too good to be true? I signed up for the free consultation and Stephanie told me I needed 3 treatments on board and she would give me a simple regime to follow at home. If I booked all three appointments there and then with the discounts it would cost only £189.00 – “wow” I said “that is a serious amount of money are you really sure it works with long term results”? She was very confident and said she would measure me before and after.
I booked my three appointments. After the first treatment Stephanie displayed the items needed for the simple regime at home the cost…£200.00+ I queried why this wasn’t disclosed prior to the treatments, she wanted to know why I thought it so expensive, she said some passengers had spent over £3,000.00 on stuff to take home. I felt very pressured and said I need to think it over. Afterward I cancelled my next two appoints (losing the discount and had to pay £89.00) I did lose 4” – I was measured in 8 places and the losses were aggregated IT LASTED ALL OF one day. Having got home I goggled Ionithermie and was so grateful I didn’t spend any more money on it. I will be writing with my concerns to P and O.