The Oriana is a lovely ship with great facilities, spoilt only by the lack of consideration for the under 65s and those of us who just want to have a boogie and not unsmilingly parade round Harlequins doing endless ballroom and sequence dancing. This ship is one of the nicest we've been on for layout, show lounge, accessibility etc. and the showteam and the shows they presented are certainly the BEST we've seen on any ship. Their singing, dancing, choreography etc. were second to none (even if some of the aging audience slept through their performances). Their Queen and Abba shows were excellent - but then they were all good - as were the cabaret singers - especially Jayne.
Cabins were fine, towels were big and fluffy (always important) and as ever the crew were helpful and attentive. The Gary Rhodes restaurant was excellent - so good in fact that we went several times and enjoyed the food, ambience and service (especially Sameep and Godfrey). Drinks prices were reasonable and More
we had no complaints with any of the restaurants, although I'm sure some people would. There did seem to be a fair scattering of Grumpy Old Men & Women claiming that 'things weren't what they used to be'.
Our main grumpiness was that for anyone who just wanted to have a disco-ey dance and a bop around - entertainment was HORRENDOUSLY thin on the ground. Every evening we hoped there would be the combination of a dancefloor and excellent DJ Ant for the not so old, most evenings we were disappointed. P&O seem to think that the way to keep people entertained is by putting on a Quiz - so if you like quizzes, go P&O. On most days you can probably do at least half a dozen and if you're lucky win a bottle of their not so nice rose wine. Entertainment Team - you could do with a bit of inspired thinking here instead of running out the same old format time and time again.
We didn't go and see any of the speakers - nautical history and ex-policeman - but apparently they were pretty good. And the concert pianist seemed to get big thumbs up too.
Best advice - if you board in Southampton, be prepared for an elderly cruising group.
A long way into the prow so very uncomfortable when sea in full swell, but fine at other times. Bunk beds folded to wall either side of double bed meant you had to do a bit of a wiggle to get down side of the bed and made manoeuvring quite awkward. Bathroom fine. Lots of wardrobe space. Tiny tiny safe(s); one in each wardrobe. Good lighting and more electric sockets than the balcony cabins.
Dubrovnik - fab place. If you're walking the walls then get there early as it can be baking hot and there are lots of steps, so avoid if you're not reasonable agile. Ticket office is through archway and round to the right - you'll need your credit card or local currency. Do wander down to the port and also take the cable car (about 10 Euros) to get a panoramic view.
Venice - amazing place - need a return visit here. The 4 hour backstreet walking tour was only about 2 hours and the 'refreshments' were insulting. Do one of the bigger tours or just get out and walk. Start in St. Marks Square and just walk - you'll soon get the hang of it. We walked for 7 hours. If you want to see the main places of interest be prepared to queue, but be aware that you can walk by yourself to the Grand Canal and see lots on the way. (Avoid Hard Rock Cafe exorbitant prices, but you can sneak in to use the loo).