Our personal observations from our 18 day cruise on Oceania's Marina inaugural voyage Miami to San Francisco February 2011. Ship-board public areas were beautifully appointed, interesting artwork abounds everywhere. Everything is brand spanking new. Antonio at the reception desk was especially helpful to us through out the cruise. Everyone on board, staff, crew, and fellow cruisers were very friendly, it was as if we knew them all our lives.
The staterooms we saw and stayed in, were similar in shape and design. The designers utilized low maintenance materials for the cabinetry, lots of plastic laminates that look like dark wood grained surfaces. The bedding was so comfortable all we needed to do was look at it and fall asleep. Our bathroom was nicely done in real-marble as were all of the facilities on board. I wonder if there is any marble left in Italy after seeing this ship. There was a bathtub and a shower in all staterooms. We found them more than adequate for our needs. The shelving and draws were not deep enough to our liking. Folks 5 foot and under may have difficulty reaching the safe and top shelf of the cabinetry. The verandah is a great amenity and we used it frequently for reading and private sunbathing. The more luxurious suites with even larger accommodations have similar bright work and lots more space and amenities even on their verandahs. Some even had walk-in closets. Ours was a bit smaller but adequate.
The food presentation, service and quality are more than magnificent. The cooking classes by CIA chef Kelly and foodie entertainment by the executive chefs Franeck and Wolfgang all exceeded our expectations. The specialty restaurants have menus that draw you back for more and more. We ate in Tuscano four evenings, as it was our favorite. Besides having a menu for the main courses they offered an olive oil and balsamic vinegar menu from the various regions of Italy. We also dined at Red Ginger and Jacques which were equally exquisite. Meat eaters love Polo and the huge prime ribs offered there. These specialty restaurants were not extra expense. It was just a matter of making an advance reservation. Getting a walk in was almost impossible. The wine selection would be hard to beat. I think we had the best wine parings for every meal. On other evenings we ate frequently at the Terrace just to pick and choose this and that out in the open air. It was of no use as we each gained ten pounds on the trip even with regular trips to the fitness center and working out. Our favorite hang out in between activities was at the Barista's for the best coffee and friendly company.
All the folks we met on the Cruise Critic Roll Call were wonderful new friends once we met face to face on at the meet and greet the beginning of the cruise. All our excursions were really fine. We used Lee Miles, Rosie's Tours and Rica Surf, & Super Shuttle in addition to the ship tours. I think we made new lasting friends from our experience. I think it would be hard to replicate the experiences we had on this cruise.