Oceania Cruises, the foundling cruise line headed by former industry honchos Frank del Rio, from Renaissance, and Joe Watters, from Crystal, is gradually progressing as it navigates the start-up process. The company has now completed financing and has signed a long-term lease/purchase agreement for its first two ships: formerly known as Renaissance's R1 and R2. Oceania has an option on a third -- the one-time R5.
The first ship has been named Regatta and will launch, as previously announced, on July 5 with a 14-day cruise from Barcelona to Harwich (London). The second ship, Insignia, is slated for an October 4 start from Barcelona to Istanbul. Itineraries are listed below and company officials say to expect average lengths of about 14-days and per diems for standard balcony cabins at the $200 - $250 range (that's per person, based on double occupancy).
The company is in the process of staffing up, both on the corporate and shipboard side, and plans to open its reservations operation January 27. The toll-free number will be 1-800-531-5658 and the address: 8120 NW 53rd Street, Suite 100, Miami, FL 33166.