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1 Dover P&O Cruises Oriana Cruise Reviews

Oriana June 2006 Last year we took a short cruise on Arcadia and were shocked to hear all the time not to go on a short cruise, there were so many times we were told not to go on a short cruise, so with some trepidation we took a ... Read More
Oriana June 2006 Last year we took a short cruise on Arcadia and were shocked to hear all the time not to go on a short cruise, there were so many times we were told not to go on a short cruise, so with some trepidation we took a 4-day cruise on Oriana. We went Wednesday the 21st. As normal a pleasant and easy trip down to Southampton, we arrived at 1150 am and the car park chaps were waiting, they took the car and then a guy came over and took our bags, all this took about 2 mins and was great service. None of this happened on Arcadia, it was not on a short cruise. Check in opened at 12 and we were whisked through in no time at all. We had a drink in the lounge and waited to board and that was pleasant. Boarding was fast and easy we were on board by 2 and our bags were at the cabin waiting, we had an outside on c deck c141 and its was perfect, last time on Arcadia we had a suite and the cabin on Oriana did not disappoint. Our steward was there while we unpacked and was so nice, she said anything you want just ask and she meant it. So we unpacked and did a tour of the ship, starting on the top deck and walking along every deck from top to bottom. The ship is ten years older than Arcadia but much much nicer , all the rooms are better, the bar lounges, shopping it's all so much better . Arcadia was a cold ship quite plain but Oriana was so much nicer. We were seated in the peninsular restaurant and had asked for a table for 2 and first sitting, both of which were given to us as requested. This was not the case on Arcadia. The met office had forecasted strong winds, very unusual for the time of year they said, so we thought it could be an interesting trip to Rotterdam our first port. The ship sailed on time, and we dropped into Andersons for a pre dinner cocktail this is such a nice bar, nothing to compare on Arcadia and the staff were so welcoming. The cocktails were to die for, so so nice. Dinner followed superb food service was brilliant if you can find a fault here then you're a really sad person. As we passed calshot the sea was busy, white horses every where and I thought this does not look good, we're only in the Solent. As we passed bembridge and hit the open water it got worse a fairly heavy swell and white horses every where. But the ship was perfect, hardly moved and took it all in its stride so no worries there at all. So off to the show, its was hits from the musicals and was very good, the only place Arcadia is better was here the seat and layout were better in that theatre. After the show off to the pacific lounge for the 70s night and the group natural high did a great job. We danced the night away and went up to the cabin about 2 am it was the most perfect first day. Next morning we awoke early and watched out progress up the river to Rotterdam its a long ride from the sea to the city and was fascinating. We decide to breakfast in the peninsular again and it was the best breakfast anywhere in the world nothing is too much for those guys. We took the courtesy bus into town for some retail therapy and the guide was great gave us loads of info all free of charge of course. We returned to the ship for lunch and again it could not have been better. Another walk round the ship then back in the afternoon to town, to look round the shops we missed in the morning. Dinner again was just perfect and followed by a show with Tom o Connor who is really good, he was also on Arcadia last year. Yet again more cocktails in Andersons and then off to the pacific lounge again for a sailaway party. We danced the night away again. This ship is really good and your made to feel welcome everywhere. Next morning we arrived on time in Zebrugge and went into town after another amazing breakfast. Bit more retail therapy this time big bottle of chocolate milk and Belgium chocolates. Back to the ship cocktails by the Rivera pool and it was so nice up there, then off to lunch in the conservatory again a wide choice and cream cakes to die for. The afternoon was spent sunbathing and sleeping on the rear pool deck. We both got a bit burnt, as it's a real suntrap. Gala dinner night the only formal night on the cruise followed by the captains cocktail party in the pacific lounge, the Captain made a speech and was genuinely funny. We talked to some officers and they were friendly too and of course free drinks and nibbles. Another show followed this time the Buddy Holly story and that was well done too. By now I suspect you're bored and thinking this is a love story of one couples love for Oriana. Well it's true we loved Oriana and almost hated Arcadia. I smoke and on Arcadia I was told you can't buy cigarettes as it's against customs regulations on a short cruise, on Oriana they delivered my smokes to my cabin and it was not a problem. Arcadia is not finished and decorated in the same way, ok they say its contemporary and modern. That may be, but its cold and not welcoming, the atrium is a waste of time with its boring curtains, on Oriana its grand and welcoming. Little things were different, outside the restaurant the days menus were displayed and on Arcadia it was a secret what was for dinner in the evening, they did not display the menus on a short cruise. If you're thinking of a cruise and can't do the full monty because of costs or work commitments, please treat your self and go on the Oriana you will be hooked for life it's a real experience, to add to our rapture we only paid £ 299 for a double outside we got a free upgrade of about 5 grades too. I hope Arcadia personnel read this and suggest they travel on Oriana to see how to get people to fall in love with cruising and show off the real true way P and O cruising should be. Next trip for us is a one-night taster on the QE2 and we paid £ 49 each for this so we can't wait to see how the ship compares. But I can promise we will be cruising again and P and O are going to see a lot more of us we can't wait and all of you out there wondering if you should try it all we can say is go for it, but not on Arcadia. One tiny footnote, the hand sterilising on the ship was almost non existent, only in the conservatory was any effort made, this is the same on Arcadia so come on P and O sort it out its causes problems so make it more strict please. Happy cruising to you all. Read Less
Sail Date June 2006
Oriana Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins N/A 3.8
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms N/A 4.1
Fitness Recreation N/A 3.6
Family 2.0 3.6
Rates 4.0 3.9

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