3 Oceania Riviera Cruise Reviews for Luxury Cruises to Transatlantic from Athens (Piraeus)

My husband and I have cruised many, many times on different cruise lines. This was our first Oceania cruise and chose this particular cruise because the Riviera has a good reputation and this 17 Day cruise spent 3 days in Israel - in ... Read More
My husband and I have cruised many, many times on different cruise lines. This was our first Oceania cruise and chose this particular cruise because the Riviera has a good reputation and this 17 Day cruise spent 3 days in Israel - in addition to a number of Greek Islands and a few Italy ports. Oceania claims to have the best food at sea - and I tend to agree with that. Oceania also claims to have great service. Usually, the service is good but it lacks in a number of ways, including Cabin Steward service can be spotty. The Grand Dining Room service was so slow and poor that we never went back after our first experience there. We ate in the Terrace Café for lunch and dinner most of the time and the food there was mostly the same menu as the Grand Dining Room and you can get in and out much more quickly. Jacques Restaurant was good - both food and service. Tuscana (Italian) was my absolute favorite. The food and service were unbelievable and in my opinion could not be improved upon. Red Ginger was a disappointment - not because of the service which was very good, but because of the menu. Of course, Asian food is not my favorite but my husband really wanted to go and even he was disappointed that the items you would expect to be on the menu were missing. Polo Grill (Steakhouse) was definitely the most disappointing. The service was poor and the 20 oz. Porterhouse Steak my husband had was so tough and hard to eat that he could only swallow a small portion of the steak. He had really expected that experience to be exemplary but it was the worst of all. Unfortunately, the Reception Desk will tell you anything just to get you to "go on". Also, the Shore Excursions Department would tell us that we would be anchored in a particular area and then it would turn out to be a different place which would be must more inconvenient and harder to get to the desired areas - and more time consuming. If you do not take the Ship's own Shore Excursions, you are definitely at a disadvantage each day. Oceania says they provide transportation into "town" most of the time if they do not dock near the town. On this cruise, Oceania did not provide such complimentary transportation in areas needed. We had a Concierge Veranda and with the amount of money we invested in this cruise, we can honestly say it was tremendously over priced. We would much more recommend either Holland America or Celebrity (especially Celebrity if you are a "foodie") and take several cruises for the price of this one on Oceania. Yes, the food was good but not worth that many more thousands of dollars than say either Holland America or Celebrity. The bed was extremely comfortable - probably the most comfortable of any hotel, including the very premium hotels. Dr. Wulf, the Enrichment Speaker was very good and informative as well as interesting. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We cruised on the Riviera from 19 April through 29 April for the Sacred Sanctuaries itinerary. We cruised on other lines in the past, but decided to try Oceania for the stop in Israel and the particular stateroom that we selected. We ... Read More
We cruised on the Riviera from 19 April through 29 April for the Sacred Sanctuaries itinerary. We cruised on other lines in the past, but decided to try Oceania for the stop in Israel and the particular stateroom that we selected. We had a bit of a nightmare getting to Athens to get on the cruise, but that has nothing to do with Oceania. However, we made it! We found the embarkation process extremely easy, but that is probably because we were two of only a handful of folks getting on the ship at that point. It probably looked a lot different a bit earlier in the day. We went straight to our stateroom, 11080, an Oceania Suite on the aft. It is an amazing room. There is some noise from the Terrace Café above in the morning or during peak dining hours, but it was nothing that a cheap set of ear plugs couldn’t cure. The suite itself features a media room, a living and dining room combo, a bedroom with king size bed, a walk-in closet, one HUGE bathroom, another half bath (deck 12 Oceania Suites have a full second bath), and then the best part – a massive wrap-around balcony. We spent most of our time on the balcony watching the aft view. The ship was beautifully maintained. I found customer service to be perfect. Always a smile and an offer to make your day a bit easier. Our stateroom attendants and our butler were also wonderful. They took this cruise to another level. Our room was cleaned as soon as we left the suite. Our butler provided a level of professionalism and luxury that made our experience on the Riviera something that we will never forget. The food was great. We only ate in the MDR one night as we were invited to dine with the general manager. The specialty restaurants are like nothing we have tasted at sea. I would highly recommend Oceania for any foodies out there. The ports were everything you would expect and the weather was near perfect for the entire cruise. I would recommend looking into private tours for trips to Israel. We had a much nicer experience on a private tour to Jerusalem, but our Oceania tours were mostly wonderful. You are just at the mercy of your fellow tour goers and their pace. We didn’t use the pool deck as we were spoiled with the suite balcony, but it looked clean, comfy, and not crowded. We also didn’t go to any shows….with the itinerary, we were usually passed out asleep by 9:30pm. I used the running track on deck 15 on most mornings. It is a nice option for a run while you are entering a new port! The fitness center is also a very nice facility. There is a good variety of equipment. It is clean and well stocked with water and other fitness beverages. Having self-service laundry facilities on the ship is another benefit! Disembarkation was also seamless and easy. We were on our transfer to our hotel within 10 minutes of leaving the Riviera lounge. We were just sad that we had to leave :-). Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
The itinerary was perfect for us giving us a chance to see Athens before sailing then 3 days in Israel docked in Haifa. The size of the cabin and Oceania's reputation aided in the decision. When we planned this we were looking for ... Read More
The itinerary was perfect for us giving us a chance to see Athens before sailing then 3 days in Israel docked in Haifa. The size of the cabin and Oceania's reputation aided in the decision. When we planned this we were looking for something going to Israel and the length of time we were going to be there was the most attractive aspect. Cruising to the Greek islands was an added bonus. The Oceania staff was superb both in the cabin and all the other venues. The were happy and courteous We traveled with friends and made new freiends. We found the food good and the specialty restaurants superb. The ship was clean and the shops adequate We were usually too tired after touring and eating late to avail ourselves of any of the entertainment Our shore excursions were done privately and I think were as good as or better than Oceania's and less expensive Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Riviera Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.5
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 3.5 3.2
Public Rooms 4.5 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 2.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.2
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.8

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