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153 Caribbean - Southern Luxury Cruise Reviews

Our goal was to find a cruise to test my traveling ability since a medical problem has prevented me from going very far over the past three years. Prior to that I'd been on about 15 cruises. We booked on Celebrity because family ... Read More
Our goal was to find a cruise to test my traveling ability since a medical problem has prevented me from going very far over the past three years. Prior to that I'd been on about 15 cruises. We booked on Celebrity because family members had taken recent cruises and loved them. We chose the Summit for its smaller size and for the first time ever we booked a suite, mainly for comfort because we knew we might have to spend a lot of time there. As it turned out I was comparatively fine. Our balcony with lounge chairs was comfy for reading. We usually went to The Retreat Lounge - coffee, snacks and cocktails during the day - because the ambiance was great and we got to meet and chat with guests and staff. Alexandra was the bartender in the Lounge who was excellent and a very interesting person to get to know. Our concierge staff in the Lounge (Sophie, Georgina and Tony) responded to a few minor problems. They were efficient and very personable. We dined in Luminae for all dinners. Service was superb with special thanks to Kus, Vincent and Vladimir. We did not try the specialty restaurants because we enjoyed Luminae. There were games and trivia which were fun. The itinerary was great for beach lovers. We had to cancel two excursions because of weather and the island tour we took on St Maarten was not very good - driver with no personality and traffic jams, and not much to see.The Summit was very well refurbished ("revolutionized") in 2019. The Captain was gracious as were all the officers. The ship has a state of the art navigation system which will be on every Celebrity ship within the next few years. It was extremely impressive! The kitchen tour was amazing. This is a great ship for almost everyone. Young couples to seniors and everyone in between will find something to do. We will definitely book on Celebrity again - a suite - on the Summit or any of the other three Millenium class ships. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Azamara Journey 11-30-19 We booked the Azamara Journey 12 days before embarkation as our planned Galapagos adventure on the Celebrity Xpedition was canceled by the cruise line. This back to back cruise, the “9-Night Caribbean ... Read More
Azamara Journey 11-30-19 We booked the Azamara Journey 12 days before embarkation as our planned Galapagos adventure on the Celebrity Xpedition was canceled by the cruise line. This back to back cruise, the “9-Night Caribbean Highlights Voyage” followed by the “7-Night Caribbean Breezes Voyage” was available at a terrific price and with nice booking incentives. As we had always wanted to try Azamara, this seemed like the best “Plan B” to use our planned vacation time. This review picks up in San Juan PR as we return to the Journey for this segment of our B2B cruise. The Uber driver returned us to the Journey and other than maybe a ten minute wait to get through security we were soon back on board. Lunch was enjoyed on the patio and we returned to our cabin to store the rest of our things. We had our complementary laundry bag ready for our room steward to pick up and took our laundry bag of “Special items” (mostly lightweight Columbia wear) to the laundry room to do ourselves. We were surprised to find we were not the only back to back cruisers who had this idea that this was a great time to do laundry, but we had no problem getting two washers and then a single dryer to clean everything. This was the first time ever that we were excused from the muster drill. Walking around the ship we just keep telling crew members 'In transit guests' and they smiled and waved us on. The cruise critic meet and greet was set for 6:30 PM. We attended and met the roll call members we will be touring with on a few of the islands. One couple asked if they could join us for dinner so we headed to the dining room and were able to get a four-top in Shaad's area. Arriving late (at 7:00) on a very busy dining room night and with our needed special orders, it took nearly three hours to complete dinner. We did not intend to attend Eric's welcome in the showroom of the show of “Come sail away” which we saw last week, so at this point we wandered past the shops and called it a night. Sunday, December 1 - At Sea A truly beautiful day as sea sums up this Sunday. We slept in until after 7:30. DW took the time to do her PT exercises, and I went to get some tea. There is a dining room brunch today so we waited on breakfast. Eric hosted a non-denominational church service in the Drawing Room. About 20 attended and Eric had some really good stories to tell. We also learned that his father was a Presbyterian minister. Following the service we enjoyed brunch and were able to sit in Shaad's area. We then went up to the pool area and I was only able to find one lounger in the shade. I took that one as DW wanted to look over the shops (nothing new) and sign up for the complimentary afternoon “Ladies Pamper Party” hosted by the spa. Shortly after DW came up the pool deck the couple next to me relinquished their loungers so DW took the one next to me. We stayed there reading and listening to the sounds of Vibz. We had a light lunch at the Patio and also moved lounger seats to stay in the shade. The couple we had dinner with last night told us that the price for the internet package is based on the number of days, and therefore it goes down each day. By tomorrow, if we haven't used our complimentary minutes, those minutes would pay for the package the rest of the cruise. We will certainly check that out! DW attended the 3:00 Ladies Pamper Party and really enjoyed the complimentary mini-facial. I returned to the cabin to clean up and get ready for the evening. I brought my log up to date. We visited the Living Room for the start of the Starlight Trio's set and then went to Discoveries at 6:00 for dinner. Guest Entertainer David Knight, a hypnotist, gave a really good show. Getting audience volunteers took him a while, and then about half the volunteers tested out, but it was a good & 'clean' show. After the show we visited the Living Room and listened to Vibz a while. We also danced. Then it was time to call it a night as we have a full day tomorrow! Monday, December 2 – Bridgetown, Barbados Our tour today booked through the ship is a photography tour with a local professional photographer, but it does not meet until 1:00. So despite at least three previous visits to Barbados, we never went downtown to Bridgetown, so we made that our morning excursion. We began the day with breakfast in Discoveries. About 8:45 or so we made our way outside, walked to and through the cruise terminal (which you have to walk all the way around so as to pass all the vendors who have paid for space there), and out the distant “Independent” doorway. We found a cab and for US$2 each caught a ride into Bridgetown. The driver offered to take those of us going to town to the 'far end' of town so we would walk back along the main shopping street. We did that, and actually found the 'far end' had more sights to see, including Independence Square and the parliament building. There is also a marina with several bridges crossing it, near the main bus station. We enjoyed exploring the town for about 2 hours, having purchased one shirt. We caught a cab back to the port and looked around the outside vendors. At the first one (furthest from the actual terminal building) we found a shirt for me and a nice Caribbean dress for DW. These will make an appearance at tonight's Caribbean party. We then went back to the Journey with just enough time for some lunch before heading out to our tour. There were 18 on the tour and gratefully this was in a bus built for 30 or more. Our guide was excellent and our tour took us far from the port to the rarely visited by cruisers area on the Northeastern coast of Barbados which they call the “Scotland” district. Everything here is very green and lush. We shot a great deal of photos of both man built and natural elements. The last stop of the tour was at the Atlantis hotel where we each enjoyed a superb Jamaican Rum Punch while watching the waves crash of the rocks. We returned to the Journey at about 5:20 and rushed to get ready for the Caribbean party as we were to attend the 6:00 show. This performance was not as enjoyable as the one on the first leg of the cruise. It was totally different but the emphasis here was less our cup of tea. The final segment, featuring a man on stilts in the showroom, was certainly the best part of the show. We had 8:00 reservations at Prime C. We went a little early and were seated all the way aft by the rear windows. Before 9:00 the skies opened up so that certainly showed that the staff made the right decision having the Caribbean event in the Cabaret. Dinner was very enjoyable but after this exhausting day it was a challenge to stay awake. We called it a night after dinner. Tuesday, December 3, Castries, St. Lucia, also DW's birthday. Early start to the day so we had a quick breakfast in the Windows Cafe. We saw our touring friends there and they actually were at our meeting spot before we were! I had already received an e-mail from our tour guide, Kurt of Island Man Taxi & Tours confirming our meeting spot, just outside the terminal building. Two other ships in port with us, the Queen Mary 2 (tendering – a long tender ride) and the Summit. We met Kurt before 8:30 and walked a few blocks to his van, parked in the garage of a Massy supermarket. Off we went with Kurt. First stop was an overlook high up with a great view of Castries and the surrounding area. Next we headed south down the West coast road. Kurt explained that nearly the only sign one sees is the “Hairpin curve ahead” sign. He was sure right about this. Between the windiness and the condition of the road (not the greatest for sure) I believe the average speed was no more than 30 KPH. Kurt did seem to know where the many potholes were and missed 98% of them. The next stop was a slow drive through one of the coastal villages. When climbing the hill on the far side, he stopped at an overlook where someone he obviously knew had a small shop. While there his friend, with a guitar, serenaded DW with a “Happy birthday” song. Back in the van, Kurt said that this fellow is the St. Lucian “Bob Marley” and knows just about any song one can imagine. We continued on driving through the coastal rain forest and another coastal village. We stopped at an overlook of the city of Soulfriere. This was again another great view and was also our first really good view of the famous Pitons. From here we could also see the steam from volcanic hot springs a little inland from the Pitons. We drove through Soulfriere and Kurt pointed out the Hummingbird beach area we would visit later. We then drove up hill from the town to the entrance of the Tet Paul Nature Trail. This trail took us past many native plants including both flowers and fruits. We saw pineapple growing, one per plant. Our guide explained that each plant produces one pineapple per year. There were great overlooks over country villages and we had unbelievable views of the Pitons and surrounding seas. The boats down on the sea looked so small from our vantage point. Just like the Piton trail, going back down was harder than going up. We need to take care on the high steps going down so it took a while. Reaching the ticket booth area we found many mini-buses parked and large groups just starting off, about a dozen per guide. We felt very blessed we were just a group of four! Back in Kurt's van, he gave all of us a Rum Punch made with St. Lucian rum. We next drove to the Toraille waterfall, where the two men went bathing directly under the waterfall. This waterfall was easily 75 feet high, and when standing right under the main part, it really beat up on the skin it was so forceful. From there, we headed to a great restaurant in Soulfriere for a seafood lunch. Lunch was very enjoyable and very reasonable at about $10/pp. From here, we went to the beach. We all went swimming and spent about an hour at the beach. Then it was time for the return to Castries, which took over 90 minutes of twisting and turning road. Kurt dropped us off at the terminal and handed DW a birthday gift, which was much appreciated and unexpected! Back on board, as it was now 4:30, we needed to get ready as quickly as possible for the 5:00 Club Voyage party. Dinner followed in Discoveries and was again very good. The show was “Jump, Jive, and Swing.” Even though we saw this last cruise it was so good we again attended. The staff changed the show some from last week and those changes made it even better. After the show we listed to Vibz in the Living Room for a few songs and called it a night. Oh, and the captain told us at the Club Voyage party (followed by a ship wide announcement) that tomorrow's call at Dominica had been canceled due to violent protests ahead of their Friday elections. We were headed to Martinique instead. I sent an e-mail to our tour guide in Dominica, Nature Isle Explorer Day Tours, asking for a refund of our tour deposit. Wednesday December 4 – Fort-De-France, Martinique (re-routed from Roseau, Dominica) All best laid plans sometimes need to change, and this is one of those days. We were not able to put together a literal 'last minute' tour so with some e-mail hints from our friends who were on last week's cruise, we walked the 3500 steps (each way) to the ferry boat landing. Fortunately we walked with the friends from our St. Lucia tour as my credit card would not work in the ticket machine and they didn't take debit/ATM cards. Tickets purchased we took the ferry across the bay to Anse a l'Ane. In talking with locals they said the beach was normally very nice but recent storms had kicked up a lot of rocks. They assured us the water is tested and safe. Looking back we are not so certain. In any case, we paid $5 each for beach chairs (in the shade) and I did take a swim for about 30 minutes. There is a lot of leaves and stuff in the water until you get quite far out, where the water became more translucent. After about 2 hours we decided to head back as the ship's wine and lunch were calling. Soon enough the ferry appeared, we rode across, and walked the 3500 steps back to the ship. Why so far? Being a last minute port, we were docked at the Tourelles Cruise Terminal rather than the one right downtown. We certainly enjoyed lunch and found the pool looked rather crowded. We ended up retreating to our cabin for a bit of a rest as we want to stay up for Eric's show tonight. We listened to the Starlight Trio a while before dinner. We dropped off the note to the couple we are renting a car with tomorrow, and enjoyed dinner in Discoveries. We opted to see the Piano entertainer, Peter Rossetti, in his main stage show “Rocket Man meets Piano Man.” The music is good but I had a hard time staying awake. I worked on my log between shows, and then Eric de Gray came on with his “Broadway Showstoppers” show. This is a terrific show and was just as good as the prior week. Better in fact as we had better seats this time. This is a 75 minute show and the time flies by – no problem staying awake either! After the show we called it a night. Thursday, December 5, Charlestown, Nevis – St. Nicholas Day (Netherlands) The Journey was right on time and tenders began at about 8:00 heading over to the small island of Nevis. We had arranged through cruise critic to share a rental car with another couple. The main road around Nevis is pretty good and can be driven in about one hour. We decided to drive it counter-clockwise so our first stop would be the Botanical Garden. It took quite some doing to reach the garden as the main route was blocked by road construction. The gardens are very nice, with a decidedly Asian theme. In fact, the restaurant in the gardens is a Thai restaurant. We spent about two hours at the gardens, including about a 5 minute shower. From the gardens we continued on our drive trying to reach the rocky beachfront near the lime kiln we saw on the map. We could not reach it, but did spend about 10 minutes with some local children who seemed transfixed that we had happened on their road! We continued our circuit and stopped by the ruins of a sugar plantation. Much of the equipment was still in place and this is now a historic site. Great views were available from nearly every vantage point on the island. Further along we stopped at a beach immediately 'behind' the airport affording incredible views of nearby St. Kitts. By this point we were getting pretty exhausted and sitting in the back seat bouncing around was taking it's toll. We asked our touring friends if they would mind dropping us back at the tender pier and they were most accommodating. We headed back to Journey and had a late lunch recovering from our circuit adventure of Nevis. That evening was the White Night party. We had our dinner in Discoveries and then proceeded up to the pool deck. We sat with friends and nibbled a little before the entertainment began. This was essentially the same show we had seen on the previous cruise segment however the feeling was quite different being out on the open deck. We truly appreciate the amount of work the crew has to invest in changing over the entire pool deck to have this event! What an incredible time. One of the photographers took our photo dancing and that photo ending up becoming our Christmas card photo – appropriate as it is St. Nicholas day! We called it a night after the party. Friday, December 6 – St. Barts The only repeat port on the two cruises was St. Barts. This time we took our time going over and brought our snorkeling gear. We walked to “Shell beach” and quickly discovered that the snorkeling there was best on the left side, by the rocks. I saw thousands of fish of many types and really enjoyed snorkeling there. After having more than our fill of the water, we cleaned the sand off everything and began walking back to the tenders. We met a number of guests along the way just heading to the beach. We told them what we could to enhance their experience. We had a nice conversation with the crew member handling refreshments at the tender pier while waiting for the tender. Everyone onboard is so friendly. Back on board we found two shaded chairs and relaxed with some soft drinks and wine. We enjoyed a swim in the pool, being the only ones in the pool. We enjoyed a last lunch at the Patio, and relaxed a little more in our chairs. Later that day we packed a good portion of our stuff for the return home the next day. The Discovers Club Voyage event was at the aft bar on deck 9 for sail-away. We had a very nice time at this event. The last dinner of the cruise in Discoveries was terrific, and the chocolate buffet had many items different from the prior cruise. We talked some with the pastry chef about his creations. This last night the entertainment team presented “Just Dance.” We missed this show on the first segment and greatly enjoyed everything about it. We then went back to the cabin to finalize the luggage and put it out for pick up. Saturday, December 6 – Disembarkation and return home We woke before the alarm went off. We left our cabin a little after 7:00 bringing our carry off bags with us to the Windows cafe so the cabin team could ready our room for the embarking guests. We had a nice breakfast with all the crew members thanking us for sailing with them. Shaad stopped by and wished us safe travels home. At about 8:40 we headed out with our carry-off bags to find the captain, hotel manager, and Eric De Gray, along with a few other officers wishing everyone safe travels and come back again! With no rush of guests it was nice to stop and chat for a few moments. We found our luggage with no issue and had no wait at all at customs. So nice not to have a line, and the agent asked how our cruise was. We headed outside and dropped our luggage and got into the bus to transfer to the airport. Our driver was entertaining but dropped us at the wrong spot, assuring us our luggage would arrive. After a few minutes DW noticed luggage down at the other end of the terminal and sure enough all the luggage for those in the van was down there. Summary: We have cruised about 35 times. The majority of cruises are on Celebrity and Holland America, with a few other lines occasionally. Really enjoy the smaller ships. Favorite ship was HAL Prinsendam but it was sold. New favorite is the Journey. A few years ago I wrote in a review “I guess the days of 5-star cruising are history.” Well, that is not true. I feel that Azamara gives a five star experience. When we can, if the price fits into the budget, we would happily cruise on Azamara again. The food and service are great! Love the more inclusiveness of the fare. The thing that was very unexpected is the quality of the entertainment. It is hard to remember a cruise where we enjoyed every bit of the entertainment as much as we have on these two cruises. Some of the shows were repeated during the second segment. They are so good we went to see them a second time! So 5 stars for the good ship Journey. May she and her outstanding crew have a long and happy life! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This was our third cruise onboard the Odyssey and we loved every moment of it! We embarked in St. Maarten after spending two days unwinding at the Holland House Hotel. The embarkation process was absolutely painless. Everything was run ... Read More
This was our third cruise onboard the Odyssey and we loved every moment of it! We embarked in St. Maarten after spending two days unwinding at the Holland House Hotel. The embarkation process was absolutely painless. Everything was run like a well oiled piece of machinery. We were in PH cabin 918, which was lovely. I'm afraid we were spoiled by the extra room and location of this cabin. We would definitely book a PH suite again. We found the food and service to be top notch and did not have one complaint about either. I did however miss the Patio dining for an occasional evening meal as I always loved their steaks and pork chops. Many passengers really enjoyed the recent change however and the food was quite good. As we have done the Caribbean a number of times, we elected to stay onboard for a number of ports. We preferred to enjoy the comforts of the ship at some of the ports. We did not do any of the ship's excursions so I am unable to comment on those. The beach BBQ was wonderful, as always. On our last day, Jost VanDyke, the water toys were brought out much to the pleasure of many of the passengers. It was great fun! We met some lovely new friends, Martin and Stella and were able to spend some quality time with them and some other friends, Debs and Mikey, that we had met on a previous cruise. We enjoyed this cruise and were not disappointed with anything! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
I should start by saying that we were first time cruisers so have nothing to compare this to. We chose Seabourn as we wanted a small ship and good service. We absolutely got this and more. It really exceeded our expectations. The suite ... Read More
I should start by saying that we were first time cruisers so have nothing to compare this to. We chose Seabourn as we wanted a small ship and good service. We absolutely got this and more. It really exceeded our expectations. The suite was really spacious with a fabulous bathroom and walk in wardrobe. With no knowledge of what suites were good or bad we opted for the gamble of a “guaranteed veranda suite” and got 512. I have no complaints. The half metal balcony did not bother us at all. The ship never felt crowded, anywhere we went there was usually a seat, table or sunbed free. All staff were happy, polite and helpful. All said good morning/afternoon/evening when passing and the housekeeping staff were especially lovely. The food and drinks were really high quality. We loved sitting outside in the Colonnade so went there most lunch times and half the evenings. The main dining room is good too and the food delicious but I feel the lighting is way too bright, reduces the ambience. It’s good that you can either request a table for two or a sharing table (6people max) when you want to meet new people. We failed to make a reservation at the Thomas Keller grill beforehand (rookie mistake) so didn’t get to eat there. Must remember that next time. The cruise was a 7 day “yacht harbours” in the Caribbean but I don’t think it really lived up to that. The first day had to be a day at sea as it was too rough to tender at Saline Bay so we missed the beach bbq. It was held on board instead which was fun anyway. I have read a few reviews where this has happened and wonder if it’s a frequent occurrence? I felt that only two of the places we docked were actually “yacht harbours” others were cruise ports where larger ships also docked. At one we seemed to be at a freight dock with a shuttle to the main port because two larger ships had taken the cruise ship docking area! People on board were probably mainly British, Canadian and American, mostly over 50. There was one small child (very well behaved). I can’t imagine it’s a cruise which children or young people would enjoy. We had a fabulous week and are already planning our next Seabourn cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We took a seven day Eastern Carribean cruise on the Ofyssey. Didn’t get off the ship much because we have discovered over the years that most Carribean Island adventures are pretty fungible. We took an upgrade opportunity for one of ... Read More
We took a seven day Eastern Carribean cruise on the Ofyssey. Didn’t get off the ship much because we have discovered over the years that most Carribean Island adventures are pretty fungible. We took an upgrade opportunity for one of the 4 spa suites on 10 accessible only via spiral staircase in the spa- a good pick. Great outdoor deck at the rear, plenty of inside space, huge bath and shower, lots of amenities. BUT broken and unfixed/unfixable blind in the BR and a fridge door actually fell off, but was timely fixed. We found the staff uniformly friendly and accommodating - more so than on the Encore. English not always so good. Lots of trpical drink trays in constant circulation. Top shelf liquor at all bars and restaurants. House wines OK but nothing special. Restaurant decor and some public areas could use refresher. More self-serv launderettes would be helpful. Restaurant/Keller selections good to excellent. Colonnade buffets generally pretty good. Room service- too slow and too cold. The coffee, like virtually every cruise ship we’ve been on, was bad - there must be some special secret and cheap robusto blend they all buy. Espresso sometimes OK and cappuccinos were tolerable. All in all, we liked this ship although my companion thought there too many smoking areas. We liked the Encore better even though it was larger and will probably try other Seabourn ships before we come back here. Wishing you clear skies and calm seas. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
This was my first cruise on aboard a Celebrity ship. And I love it. The quality of the instalations, decoration, services and food on Silhouette is excellent. Many islands of this itinerary are very poor so I recommend a celebrity ... Read More
This was my first cruise on aboard a Celebrity ship. And I love it. The quality of the instalations, decoration, services and food on Silhouette is excellent. Many islands of this itinerary are very poor so I recommend a celebrity excursion to enjoy the trip. There are good excursion offered aboard. We stayed at a corner aft suite on deck 12. It was fantastic. The suite is very large, comfortable and the varanda looking backwards great. The suite class has services, like Michaels Club and Luminae restaurant that worth the extra money. suite class can also go to Blue, the Acqua Class restaurant. Suite class also provide priority embarkation and debarkation. Everything you need abroad you can use the Michaels Club Concierge. The specialty restaurants are great - worth a visit to all of them. We went to Murano - super elegant, Qsine - amazing Petit Chef show before each course, Porch was delicious - I recommend to go for lunch to enjoy the view. Sushi on Five we loved it and is a very good option for lunch as it stays open longer than the Main Restaurant. The Lawn Club Grill is an experience, specially if you are invited to cook your own food with the chefs. The entertainment is very good also - many options all the time. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We liked this cruise because we don’t typically want days at sea. This was a St. Maartin to Barbados. Cruise was 7 nights which is short but perfect for us, especially on a ship with few entertainment options. The food was outstanding ... Read More
We liked this cruise because we don’t typically want days at sea. This was a St. Maartin to Barbados. Cruise was 7 nights which is short but perfect for us, especially on a ship with few entertainment options. The food was outstanding but selection was pretty much exactly the same each day. Occasionally an extra different main dish was offered in most restaurants. We would have liked to have some local food recipes offered but this was not the case. We could have been sailing anywhere in the world and have the same menus. For example, none of the restaurants offered any spicy food , jerk recipes, etc, EACH OF THE Caribbean ports had beaches. Seabourn did not offer excursions on many of the ports. We did book a third party 7 hour snorkel, hike, swim option with Adventure Antigua which was terrific and less expensive than what was offered by the ship. We were in a V4 room near the bow of the ship. Rm 702. It was a lock off from a large suite at the bow, but we never heard any noise from them. The only noise issue we had was a couple of nights/early morning from raising or lowering the anchor. Obviously that didn’t last long. Even though the ship was fully booked we never felt crowded. There were lots of nooks and places to hang out where we were virtually alone. The only issue around this is that there’s is only one small pool and most of the time it was full of people standing in it with cocktails. Impossible for a swim. One thing that we liked was several hot tubs on different decks. We didn’t see any children on the ship except babes in arms and that would make sense as there was little for young children to do. Entertainment was adequate. The singer and dancers were surprisngly talented but the shows weren’t very well staged and didn’t take advantage of it. Ship staff and management were always available and frequently took the time to stop and chat. The first night we had issues wth getting waited on in a timely manner but on the second day when we were asked for our feedback, mentioned that, and never had a problem again. WiFi was quite good every day. We were offered free WiFi with our cruise price and we were happy to have it. There were also several computers on board in the library/ coffee shop area which were rarely in use but a great option. My husband was always able to get live football games that he didn’t want to miss. We would choose deck 7 again as it was convenient to everything. We would probably choose mid ship or the aft, given a choice again ,as it is closer to access to coffee bar, elevators to other restaurants, library and guest services.. but the ship is so small that the bow of the boat was fine. Room service is available all day and always arrived promptly and the food was hot. On our final day we were planning to stay at the last port. Since we had to,leave the ship early and couldn’t check in until late, we took a Seabourn excursión that ended at the airport that day because they carried our luggage. At the end of the excursion, we simply collected our luggage and took a taxi from the airport to our hotel. This worked really well as we were able to see the island that we were disembarking on during the gap and could just enjoy the beach on our last couple of days of vacation. We felt that there was good value for the money, especially after staying before and after in hotels in the Caribbean. We would take Seaborn again, but would probably stick to their shortest trips due to lack of variety in food and entertainment. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We have approx 14 cruises under our belt, but this is the 1st for the Caribbean. !st Seabourn , they took care of us all the way. Before we were out of the taxi we were met by a representative and then guided to check in, no lines nor ... Read More
We have approx 14 cruises under our belt, but this is the 1st for the Caribbean. !st Seabourn , they took care of us all the way. Before we were out of the taxi we were met by a representative and then guided to check in, no lines nor waiting ...and had a drink and lunch in no time. As we left the ship once again guided thru to a taxi, effortless. The room was nice, loved the walk in closet ( penthouse suite ), bathrooms nice and large 2 sinks. The ship was nicely appointed, the rooms needed to be updated but not enough to complain about. Food was excellent everywhere and really loved the "Patio" dining at nite, Service was top notch without being too fussy. The crew were professional and having fun with us at the same time. Wine selection very nice, don't be afraid to ask for something other than what is offered, they will try and accommodate...took a few days to figure that one out. Dis not take advantage of all of the entertainment but did love the band and the cruise director as well as the new assistant cruise director what a voice! Her "one man" show about all the late greats is a must see. WE traveled with another couple and we would both hope to cruise with Seabourn again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Norwegian Getaway, June 17 – 24, 2018 – Miami-Roatan-Belize-Costa Maya-Cozumel I booked this solo voyage literally, 10-days prior to sailing. I watch the NCL website almost daily, so when the price for this trip dropped in, I ... Read More
Norwegian Getaway, June 17 – 24, 2018 – Miami-Roatan-Belize-Costa Maya-Cozumel I booked this solo voyage literally, 10-days prior to sailing. I watch the NCL website almost daily, so when the price for this trip dropped in, I booked it immediately. I booked a large balcony, 9722, along with the Ultimate Beverage Package (UBP) and a Three-pack Ultimate Dining Package (UDP). Day One – Embarkation – Not as chaotic as it seemed on the outside. Thankfully, we were the only ship departing that day, so it was just a matter of waiting in line. I was on-board within 45 minutes of arriving at the pier. Since the rooms weren’t ready, I found my way to the Sunset Bar on Deck 8. It was outside but in the shade. They were still fueling the ship, so smoking was prohibited as well. I really enjoyed this bar but as soon as the fueling stopped, it was just a cloud of smoke and I never had another drink at the outside portion of this bar. I had dinner in La Cucina as part of my UDP. I really expected a hassle eating solo, but the staff never missed a beat. Johna was my server and I couldn’t have been happier. I had Beef Carpaccio as an appetizer. It was fantastic. I had Lasagna and Osso Bucco followed by Tiramisu perfection. All this was accompanied by the line’s private label wine North & South as part of my UBP. Day two was a sea day. I really enjoy sea days since you can do a lot, a little, or nothing at all. I started with Eggs Benedict in Taste. I found my way to the Atrium for a great session of Deal or No Deal. The girl on my cruise won the $1000! I’m out $25 for my card. Afternoon nap. Dinner in Tropicana Room with Serli & Lara taking good care of me. Wever stopped by to make sure everything was to my liking. It was. I had the Chicken Parmesan and it was just perfect. Day three was Roatan, Honduras. I booked a 90-minute massage at a small spa on the north side of the island, Spa Baan Suerte. They picked me up and dropped me off for only $20 more. Great massage at a good price. I managed to have lunch at the small grill “down the beach” a little from the spa. Nice day. Day four was at Harvest Caye, Belize, the line’s private island. Since nothing on the island was included in my package, I stayed on the ship for the day. Although not as many venues are open on the ship as when she’s at sea, it’s nice to have run-of-the-ship while most everyone else is off on their exDacursions. Day five in Costa Maya, Mexico was brutally hot. The walk from the ship to the port shops was very windy, but once you passed the entry, all that air was blocked. Most people eventually found the diamond exchange with it’s open doors and the air conditioning just pouring out. I eventually found my was to the Tequila museum or the bar next to it. Great margaritas. I had two before I found my way to the tacos. I really came here for the Fish Spa which was every bit as weird as it seemed but something I had to try. Dinner was in Cagney’s as part of my UDP. I really enjoyed my view out the back of the ship. Prince, chatted with me about wine for a few moments, but I kept with my North & South red blend for this meal. My filet was cooked perfectly and was even better thanks to the Béarnaise sauce recommended to me by my server, Salinsito. I witnessed the size of the chocolate cake and knew I couldn’t handle dessert. Day six was in Cozumel. I boarded the ship knowing I wasn’t getting off in Cozumel. My research showed that there were four ships in port this day. I was surprised to see an MSC ship there as well, so five ships in port. IMO that equals mayhem. Another ship day for me and very relaxing at that. I had dinner in Moderno this day. Everything was flavorful I just wish I could have eaten more. Again I had to pass on dessert. I really enjoyed my UDP. Day seven, another sea day. I love sea days. I just strolled around the ship all day, napped a little and managed to spend some time up at Waves bar. Although I don’t enjoy the crowds and rowdy nature of the pool deck, this day wasn’t so bad. I like to mention some people who made my trip a little more memorable. First, Daniel from Prime Meridian. Daniel is a master bartender and fun to watch work. He and Nicoly work the Prime Meridian during dinner hours. Daniel was also found up at Waves on sea days along with Evelyn & Llewel. These two were a riot and I had fun wherever I came upon them. My cabin steward was Wayan. I’m not sure if Wayan had two areas of responsibility, because he was always the last steward to show up to clean rooms in the morning. Let me end with a little rant about our CruiseCritic Roll Call members who signed up for the meet & greet and then never showed up. Over 30 signed up but only 10 showed. Enough said. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I have only great things to say about my 1st experience with Island Windjammers and I will certainly be back! I have not stopped smiling since I have been home. I have been to many different places and on many vacations and I can safely ... Read More
I have only great things to say about my 1st experience with Island Windjammers and I will certainly be back! I have not stopped smiling since I have been home. I have been to many different places and on many vacations and I can safely say this vacation has been my favorite of all. We cruised on the Vela from Saint Lucia (Marigot Bay) to Dominica to Isle De Saintes to Marie Galante to Martinique to Saint Lucia (Rodney Bay and then to Marigot Bay). The food is absolutely amazing and it is included. All meals were made with fresh ingredients from the island. I have never eaten so well for a week straight in my life. Lenny the chef a.k.a. Big Sexy made healthy food taste delicious! At 5pm everyday a snack and velacoladas are served. When we went to Isle De Saintes, we had wine, cheese, and meat as the snack to go with the French flair. There was a very diverse group of 12 passengers on the boat ranging from kids to seniors. One of my favorite parts of this adventure was getting to know all of the other passengers and also the crew members. Everyone was so nice, helpful, and interesting. It was really neat to learn about everyone's lives. By the end of the trip, I almost felt like crying leaving everyone! You really become close very quickly throughout the duration of the trip! There was something for everyone on this vacation and there were always a lot of options for things to do at each stop. We hiked, snorkeled, sunbathed, relaxed, went on excursions, checked out the nightlife on the different islands, visited stores/boutiques, swam, jumped off the rope swing of the boat, watched fish at night swim through the fish light off the boat, visited a rum factory, danced on the deck at night, told stories, listened to stories, used the paddleboard, learned how to tie sailing knots and relaxed in paradise. I felt very safe and knew that the crew was very knowledgeable about sailing and safety. Unlike other cruises that I have been on, I never felt crunched for time or on a schedule. PLENTY of time was given at each island and Andrew, our operations manager, knew the best things to do on each island. He really helped make sure we hit all the best things on the island. The dingy brought you back and forth between the boat and island. If you wanted to stay on the island instead of going back for a meal, that was perfectly fine and they would come back and get you whenever you wanted! Everything on the boat was spic and span and very clean. I was worried about getting seasick so before I went, I got a prescription for the seasickness patch that goes behind your ear and I did not feel sick at all the whole cruise. It was very casual and there was no need for any fancy clothes. I wore a bathing suit and comfy clothes the entire trip! The bed was comfortable and the cabins had a shower and toilet in them. We spent most of our time on the upper part of the boat. We saw a lot of cool fish, dolphins, turtles, birds, iguanas, and lizards. If you are a food and nature lover, you will love this trip. My only complaint is that the cruise ended. :( I left with wonderful memories and new friends that I will never forget. This was the trip of a lifetime and the passengers needs are put first from beginning to end. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was my fourth cruise on Sedream and my wife and i went to celebrate my 65 th birthday and her 60th birthday. We went for two weeks and the first week there were only 45 passengers on board as we were originating in St Thomas and ... Read More
This was my fourth cruise on Sedream and my wife and i went to celebrate my 65 th birthday and her 60th birthday. We went for two weeks and the first week there were only 45 passengers on board as we were originating in St Thomas and visiting Jost Van Dyke and St Barts on our way to Barbados. The dinner to celebrate my birthday on the back of the boat was serviced with every detail and our cabin decorated when we returned! Silvio was always welcoming and made us feel at home and was always there to ne sure our service was excellent. Anna the Activities Director and Taylor the Club Director were always fun to be with and the second week Taylor took us to Happy Island for Rum Punch one afternoon which was a unique experience, the good part of Seadream is we always get to know and enjoy all the staff and crew making it such an enjoyable experience! The second week we caught up with people we met on our last Seadream cruise Sandy and Ross from Australia and met a great couple from Switzerland that we had dinner with Saturday night in Bridgetown after disembarking, Needless to say , we love Seadream! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
The whole package was a brilliant adventure the food, the ship, the staff,the entertainment was just fabulous could not fault it . You could laze by the pool or go to gym or take part in a talk or one of the many activities organised by ... Read More
The whole package was a brilliant adventure the food, the ship, the staff,the entertainment was just fabulous could not fault it . You could laze by the pool or go to gym or take part in a talk or one of the many activities organised by the entertainment team.At meal times you could go to the restaurant (they were 5*) or could do casuAl and visit the buffet style cafe where the choice was plentiful.All the staff work hard and are polite and helpful.The pools are kept immaculate and clean towels always available.If you want a bit of peace and quiet there was a beautiful library and card room.You are never stuck for something to do,even when ship is docked the trips and excursions are endless from a beach visit to a full island tour.Just could not fault it .The one high light was the morning message from captain LEO als ending in “LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL”and it’s so true Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
My husband and I, wanted to upscale we call it from (Celebrity & Holland America). To see if their was a big difference. I love Celebrity cruise line, especially the food. I never find any fault with their food or ships and service. ... Read More
My husband and I, wanted to upscale we call it from (Celebrity & Holland America). To see if their was a big difference. I love Celebrity cruise line, especially the food. I never find any fault with their food or ships and service. After 40 or more cruises through out my life time I must say it was time to up scale it. We booked Oceania. It was a 10 night. Nice Caribbean itinerary. The food excellent. Not only the Grand dining room and buffet to eat at but 4 specialty restaurants that are included in your price.All wonderful. The french restaurant was so french I must say I had a hard time with the wonderful taste. Not sure you get what I mean. Yes, a older population on board, very low key, not much going on but was fine for us. we are both 55 years old. If you are in your 20s or 30s may not be a good fit. Smaller portions of food which I really liked as so much food is wasted on a cruise. Not only that but older people like smaller portions. In the buffet and dining room but very large portions in the restaurants They take very serious the fact that you should be having a good time with no issues, if so they want to know right away so it can be fixed. In the middle of the cruise you even get a comment card to fill out to make sure everything is up to your standards.If not you will be contacted that day. I had a problem with a seal on our balcony door being broken. The wind would whistle through it every so often at night, we had a balcony cabin.I was switched to a penthouse suite ! free butler service if I wanted. It was wonderful the way they will take care of you. All in all will I cruise with them again. Yes, most definitely. I think I can say it is a step up from celebrity's food.Even the wave grill was wonderful ! high quality hamburgers Tuna, surf & turf. Milkshakes were free, morning smoothies, they served your drinks, helped you carry your plate to your table, no waiting in lines like the bigger ships. A good size ship not to big or small. All in all a wonderful cruise from someone who is very picky. You will not be dissatisfied unless you are young looking for alot of night life, then this cruise line is not for you. If you really want to relax, unwind, read a book, have alot of quite time then give them a try. Their tea time is grand.Not to be missed. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We like the Adventure of the Seas. We have cruised this ship 6 times and love it. We loved our Grand Suite and the special treatment as Grand Suite occupants as well as Diamond Plus. The food was not as good as usual but service was ... Read More
We like the Adventure of the Seas. We have cruised this ship 6 times and love it. We loved our Grand Suite and the special treatment as Grand Suite occupants as well as Diamond Plus. The food was not as good as usual but service was actually better! The cruise was fantastic and our service in the dining room was fantastic. Merek, Lenny, and Levyton were fantastic and really took care of us. Merek and Lenny went out of their way to make sure there was no MSG in the food I was ordering. They both took special care of us wherever they saw us! We will miss this ship when it leaves Puerto Rico...as will the native Puerto Ricans I'm sure. But they will adopt a new ship I'm sure. Bonaire is not so great except for Divers. Aruba is always great! We LOVE Curacao! So a wonderful island. Of course St. Marteen is always good. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We have cruised over 24 times. The last 6 cruises with Regent. We needed a change as we felt Regent standards were dropping dramatically from when we first started using them. We noted that Seabourn had a consistently higher rating than ... Read More
We have cruised over 24 times. The last 6 cruises with Regent. We needed a change as we felt Regent standards were dropping dramatically from when we first started using them. We noted that Seabourn had a consistently higher rating than Regent, so decided to give them a try as the pricing was similar, although Seabourn do not offer complimentary excursions or wifi. The difference was noticeable straight away, and it just got better and better. The staff cannot do enough for you. Not a miserable face amongst the crew. At dinner they somehow remember your name. Food and service are definitely first class. There are too many positive differences between the two lines to mention here. I would unquestionably award five stars if it were not for the location of our suite. Suite 657 ( a V5 suite!) is located just in front of the tenders /lifeboats. On our cruise there were 9 tender ports out of 13. The noise usually started around 6.15/6.30 am and lasted for at least 45 minutes. The noises came from the hydraulic arms putting the tenders over the side , the winches used to lower them, the staff shouting at one another whilst they prepared them for the water. One morning it began at 4.30 am!! Had a meeting with the Hotel Manager, who was very understanding, but nothing changed. We did get a complementary massage, but quite frankly, I would rather have had the sleep we missed, during our vacation. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We were on this cruise last year and were forced to return two days early because of weather conditions. We were given a fantastic deal to rebook on this cruise. Thank God we did. It was the best cruise ever. So many shows and activities ... Read More
We were on this cruise last year and were forced to return two days early because of weather conditions. We were given a fantastic deal to rebook on this cruise. Thank God we did. It was the best cruise ever. So many shows and activities to choose from. Each was better than the last. The stateroom was kept so clean thanks to Sookressen Mahadoo. He was pleasant and fulfilled every request with a smile and an occasional towel animal. He was great. The dining was equally as great with Amir and Carmen. What a great team. They were professional while friendly and very accommodating. The food was prepared to perfection and always delicious. The entire Royal Caribbean crew was extremely pleasant and accommodating from the Windjammer to the activities. I can't say a negative thing about the cruise or anyone on it. The excursions were both informative and wonderful. The onboard shows rivaled the best Las Vegas shows. I especially enjoyed Finis Henderson, the ventriloquist and Katrina Love. Not only did they provide a wonderful show, they were also personable and pleasant wherever spotted outside the stage. The ship was clean and well presented. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We have cruised may times previously and with many different lines. We choose our operator depending upon the itinerary and this was the reason for our first cruise with HAL, although we had heard good reports in the past. This was a ... Read More
We have cruised may times previously and with many different lines. We choose our operator depending upon the itinerary and this was the reason for our first cruise with HAL, although we had heard good reports in the past. This was a 14 night Caribbean voyage from Tampa and the majority of passengers were America. The average age was older than other ships we had sailed in and the overall atmosphere was quieter than usual. No silly games round the pool etc. This was a mid-sized ship with just under 2,000 passengers but plenty of room around the decks. The food was much better than other lines we have sailed with and the Gala Nights reflected that, fillet mignon and lobster tails!! The entertainment around the ship was also very good and varied with guest artistes featuring in the main theatre. BBKings showroom ws particularly excellent. We cannot fault the service, cabins (signature suites), entertainment or the food and drink. The best cruise for a long time. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Preface: I travel extensively throughout the USA, Europe and Asia. After doing some research on the Seabourn Odyssey, my wife and I decided to take a Caribbean vacation (without our kids). Before getting into the details, I want to ... Read More
Preface: I travel extensively throughout the USA, Europe and Asia. After doing some research on the Seabourn Odyssey, my wife and I decided to take a Caribbean vacation (without our kids). Before getting into the details, I want to commend the crew, a fine group of people who did their best to provide a good experience. The Ship: (Tired, Can't Handle any Swells) The Odyssey is small, but provides more than enough thoughtfully designed spaces for the 400+ passengers on board. The "suites" were reasonably sized for a cruise ship. Two notable shortcomings where angled shower that was far to narrow and a very odd modular queen-sized bed, that is the most uncomfortable unyielding slab I have ever experienced. Every morning was a new dimension in back-pain. Once we embarked from Florida it became obvious that the Odyssey was designed to cruise placidly in the Mediterranean and was not up to the 20 knot winds and moderate 2M seas we encountered on the way toward our first destination.The combination of too much windage and a narrow beam resulted in the most extreme rolling I have ever experienced on a cruise ship. Almost immediately it was clear that even the crew was struggling to cope. I would have written this off as the effects of a low pressure center far off in the northern Atlantic, but EVERY NIGHT was less than comfortable. Besides the roll, we frequently experienced hard, jarring rubbery kicks which resonated throughout the cabin. This ship dearly needs some time in dry dock. Dining (OK at best, laughable at worst) The Seabourn marketing materials suggest that their company provides a five-star dining experience. As far as the Odyssey is concerned this is not even close to being accurate. The "restaurant" features tiny portions of incredibly pretentious, yet amazingly bland food. The Japanese food offered during one of the themed evenings at the Colonnade was truly horrid. The "miso soup" was utterly tasteless and the glass noodles served with the main-course where so over-cooked they disintegrated into a gelatinous paste. The one bright spot was the outdoor grill on Deck 8. Not only did this offer reasonable food for dinner (comparable to any Boston or NYC mid-priced independent restaurant) but it also offered relief from the relentlessly bad ride. Too many horrible tender rides: After two monotone days at sea, we arrived at our first port only to learn that the 1M seas where too high for the ships lifeboats to function as tenders from the aft-located tender platform. This cruise had a very high number of elderly passengers, and I suspect (as do others I spoke with) that liability concerns forced the captain to cancel all tendering operations. After 90 minutes of waiting we were told we would be enjoying another day at sea. The problem here is that life-boats do not make for a pleasant tendering experience. They where packed with people and even with the windows open, the environment was more like a refugee boat than an luxury cruise. If you enjoy being packed into a horrid little craft, with too many people and like to sit on tiny hard benches in an airless cabin, while you are bounced around.. then this is the cruise for you! Value for Money The marketing for this journey, promised a luxury small ship experience with high standards of dining, dress, and overall quality. In reality this was a retirement home on the ocean. The median age was about 80. I am 51 and was probably the youngest passenger on the ship. This was an expensive cruise, make no mistake, at least I seem to be charged full retail. Worse than the money, I can never get back my time. This was my seventh cruise (six with Disney and their excellent concierge service), and the only one which I can honestly say, I regret. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was super fun! The ship is small, I think 190 or so passengers, and nearly a 1-1 ratio crew. It is wonderful, watching the anchor lift up, and then the music starting, as the beautiful sails slowly unfold, and we get underway. you ... Read More
This was super fun! The ship is small, I think 190 or so passengers, and nearly a 1-1 ratio crew. It is wonderful, watching the anchor lift up, and then the music starting, as the beautiful sails slowly unfold, and we get underway. you can’t really go wrong, with a friendly, helpful, cheerful crew, good food all day, and service, and the SEA! The magnificent, ever changing sea and sky! The fresh air, the sights, the tiny islands we visit… There are no elevators on this ship, but I was amazed at the fortitude with which some very elderly guests, went up and down the stairs several times a day, including one blind man. The guests were mixed, mostly couples, I’d say middle aged and a bit older perhaps, I’m sure it varies, with the sailing dates, as kids were back in school, when I went. I went solo, and had a great time - my only minor whine, was that after a large dinner, they had music and dancing in the lounge, and as a single, I found it awkward to dance. On a fabulous barbecue night, outside on the deck, the entertainment directors started us line dancing, so anyone could join in, and it was a blast. It’s great to have exercise, after a big meal. The pool is very small, and not heated, and it’s also, on the deck where the outside bar is, and which turns into the alternative dining spot “Candles”, in the evening, so no lovely night time swims in the moonlight are possible, which I usually adore, especially as I’m very pale, so I can swim without worrying about sunburn. The jacuzzi is there also. “Candles” has to be reserved, and each passenger is only allowed one night’s dining in Candles, unless they have room. They have a platform, which can be lowered, when we’re not sailing, or parked right in town, which is great fun. They provide you with snorkeling equipment, and all kinds of water sport goodies to enjoy. Luca was in charge of water sports, and very knowledgeable and helpful. The cabins are small, with no balcony, but charming, and old fashioned, and well designed. the beds are comfy, the rooms are clean, the showers hot, and there is a mini bar, plus TV with cable and DVD player. You’re allowed two bottle of wine per cabin I believe, to bring on board. Drinks are about $7.50 to $10.00 or more US. I didn’t buy any excursions, as I had already had to pay a single supplement, but they have tenders that take you to shore, and one can explore, or go to a beach and swim. This was only a 7 day cruise, so I just wanted to relax and have fun. Breakfast and lunch are at the “Verandah” Restaurant, with some, coveted seating outside. There is a small library, small spa, and the main dining room, which one does have to dress for a bit, and which is very nice. We did hit some swells, with the full moon, so the ship was gently (mostly gently), rocking us back and forth, but if you love the sea, you won’t care. Apparently the full moon often brings swells in the ocean. The islands we visited were beautiful, and the entertainment at night was pretty darn amusing. The singer was sweet, and had a beautiful voice, and Philipe, the head of Voyage something - was a hoot. Everyone had a great time, and everyone was sad and quiet the last night. It is just a great experience. I almost asked if they had any cabins available for the next sailing, so I could stay on another week! Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We have never been on a Cruise before and I don't think we would go on the big ships but we would go on one of the star clippers again as we were captivated by the experience. I can't compare it to other cruises in terms of cabin ... Read More
We have never been on a Cruise before and I don't think we would go on the big ships but we would go on one of the star clippers again as we were captivated by the experience. I can't compare it to other cruises in terms of cabin or food or condition of the boat but somehow I think these are immaterial when compared to the elegance and romanticism of being under sail on such a lovely boat. However, to my mine the cabins were great, comfortable and rather elegant, the food and general dining experience was wonderfully classy without being stuffy and formal and we loved it. The ports of call were well thought out. One issue would be that there was little or no information about most of the ports of call. If you planned a trip that would be fine but if just going ashore a simple information sheet with that small map would have been useful. We are thinking of another cruise shortly but no more than 200 passengers and the gentle swaying of the ship under the starlit sky is just about right so it will have to be one of the star clippers. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Embarkation easy. The first 3 days went well if you excluded the very poor entertainment. I found the cabin very dusty and the windows were filthy. Service is good in the specialty restaurants but spotty in the MDR and worse in the bar ... Read More
Embarkation easy. The first 3 days went well if you excluded the very poor entertainment. I found the cabin very dusty and the windows were filthy. Service is good in the specialty restaurants but spotty in the MDR and worse in the bar areas and by the pool. $5 wine sells for $48 on the ship but that is your choice. The shore excursions are the usual overpriced Oceania rip off but in 2 cases we actually used them we felt totally betrayed. We paid an extra $100 ($129 each) for a "luxury" 4X4 Land Rover 3 hour tour only to be shown to a old beat up Toyota pick up with beach seats. Complaint by several victims of this bait and switch fell on deaf ears. Returning from our last port of St. Barts, the tender operator lost control of the boat and smashed nose first into the hull of the Riviera at over 10 mph. Over 20 of the 50 people on board needed medical attention and many more woke up to sore backs and necks the next day. People had cuts and bruises and with strained backs and more prevalent whiplash symptoms. People were triaged by the doctor and patients we seen leaving the clinic with neck braces and bandages. The people with more minors problems were seen in a few hours with a promise to follow up. Oceania has not given an explanation whether mechanical failure or human error was responsible. We are just headed back to Miami now and I can't wait to get of this ship. The shelves in the store are almost totally empty from day one. I was told they will be replenished for the next cruise. What a shame considering the price of this cruise. We have enjoyed Oceania for 5 years but if the take over by NCL means the quality of this line is falling as has happened on this 10 day stint, it will be my last. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was our 4th sailing with Oceania and our second sailing on Riviera (we have also sailed on her sister ship, Marina). This is the first sailing we have taken with Oceania that was not "port intensive". We had 5 stops in the ... Read More
This was our 4th sailing with Oceania and our second sailing on Riviera (we have also sailed on her sister ship, Marina). This is the first sailing we have taken with Oceania that was not "port intensive". We had 5 stops in the southern Caribbean that were very easy and simple and did not require any excursions to be booked. All the excursions were basically a trip around the island or transportation to a beach, which you could easily do on your own. A good way to avoid the very high prices Oceania charges for excursions. We used this trip as a way to recover from the holidays. We had a lovely, oversized veranda balcony (two lounge chairs, plus two sitting chairs and a table) on the 7th deck that we used a great deal to hang out on our 4 days at sea. We sailed 100% full - 1,280 passengers. We were concerned that the ship would seem crowded, but it was absolutely no problem getting a table for meals, a seat in the bar, and no lines waiting for an elevator. Service as always was exemplary on board. We had the premium drink package which made ordering and paying for liquor very simple. The wine stewards were very good at assisting us select appropriate wines to go with our courses at meals. Cocktails were much improved over prior sailings as free hand pouring now appears to be allowed. Our cabin stewards were, as in the past, absolutely perfect and gracious. We skipped Toscana and Red Ginger based on prior sailings, but had two dinners at Polo Grill (we like to get the whole Maine lobster) and Jacques - our absolute favorite. The food is superb at Jacques. I look forward to the Mille Fleur dessert each time I am on board. We do not go the entertainment in the theater (just not our thing), but enjoyed the Brazilian guitar/singer in the Horizons Lounge at cocktail hour and the string quartet that plays adjacent to the Martini bar each evening. Both added to the peaceful atmosphere on board. There were also four lectures presented on the days at sea. The ship itself is on of our all time favorites. We have sailed with Viking, Celebrity, Norwegian and many of the very small cruise lines. Riviera is a beautiful elegant ship with exciting art work and impressive furnishings done in very good taste. The Lalique staircase is magnificent. We will continue to book with Oceania in the future. We thoroughly enjoyed this relaxing cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We have taken several cruises previously on Holland America but we wanted something a little more upscale to celebrate a milestone wedding anniversary so we decided to try Oceania. We are so glad we did. We loved Oceania and will be ... Read More
We have taken several cruises previously on Holland America but we wanted something a little more upscale to celebrate a milestone wedding anniversary so we decided to try Oceania. We are so glad we did. We loved Oceania and will be booking our future cruises with them. Embarkation and disembarkation were well organized and were a breeze. For embarkation, within about 20 minutes after arrival at the terminal, around noon, we were on the ship. The 4 main things we were looking for on the Oceania cruise were i) excellent food, ii) excellent service, iii) a nice stateroom & ship facilities and iv) not constantly feeling "nickeled and dimed". Oceania delivered on all 4... i) Food - The food in the Main Dining Room (MDR) at dinner varied from very good to excellent. Presentation and service were fine. For dinner, we generally arrived at 6:30pm, when the MDR opened, and we never had difficulty getting a nice table for 2, which is our preference. We also had several luxurious breakfasts and two lunches in the MDR. We were very impressed by the selection and the quality of the food. We ate breakfast at the Terrace Café often. Having breakfast outdoors as the ship slowly docks in a new port is wonderful. There is a wide selection at the Terrace Café for breakfast and I was really impressed with the quality of the fresh fruit - would start each breakfast with a plate of fresh fruit that I selected. Moreover their pastries (almond croissants!) and bread are terrific. Kudos to the people responsible for the bakery on board. Unlike Holland, at the buffet you are served by Oceania staff, which is nice. They will even carry your plate to your table for you. We had several lunches at the Waves Grill, especially when we got back early to mid afternoon from an excursion. Waves Grill was delightful - very nice salads, lovely french fries and excellent selection of burgers and sandwiches, all cooked to order. My favorites were the surf and turf (a must!), the Angus burger and the Reuben. We both liked the smoothies and the milkshakes. The best dining experiences, however, were in the specialty restaurants. It was so nice having access one time during the cruise to each of the 4 specialty restaurants. We actually cheated - managed to go a 2nd time to Red Ginger by checking on the 1st day of the cruise at 6pm when the restaurant opened to see whether they had any extra space - they did. Red Ginger was our favorite specialty restaurant. The subtlety and combination of flavors in the dishes we ordered were terrific. My wife and I absolutely loved the crispy duck and watermelon salad as well as the miso-glazed seabass (served in a banana leaf). A "10" !!! Polo Grill and Toscana were fine too. We were a little disappointed with the signature French restaurant, Jacques, however. The menu was very traditional, the service was rushed and the food ordinary. Have definitely eaten at much better French restaurants. And we don't appreciate it when we are served the 1st course almost immediately after ordering, even before the wine steward has had a chance to come take our order. ii) Service - consistently very good to excellent. Were pleasantly surprised by nice little touches. For example, when a server in the Terrace Café greeted us & asked us how we were doing, I mentioned that my wife seemed to be coming down with a cold. The server, Melissa from Serbia, immediately offered to bring my wife some tea with lemon and honey for her throat, which was much appreciated. Our cabin stewards were excellent and in a few cases when we had a small request, they made sure we got what we asked for. Even for the muster drill we were directed to the dining room where we could sit down during the demonstrations, rather than standing in a large group for an interminable period of time on a ship deck. Ratio of staff to guests (800/1250) is higher than on Holland and it showed. iii) Stateroom/Ship Facilities - we really liked our Concierge verandah stateroom. It was clean, functional, had plenty of storage space & everything worked well. My wife particularly liked the bathroom, with separate bath tub & shower. In other reviews we saw complaints about the shower, which is very small, but I am quite tall and didn't have a problem with it. Liked very much being able to take a bath as well, so having the separate bathtub was a plus for us. The verandah was a bit small and only had 2 basic chairs & a small table but was OK. The ship is smaller than what we were accustomed to but had excellent facilities. I used the gym often. We also used the deck at the front of the ship in the spa area that Concierge rooms can access, with its own whirlpool and chairs, during the At Sea days - very nice & quiet & one of our favorite spots. The library is a nice place to relax & has a very good choice of books. Baristas coffee bar, right next to the library, was great. Would often go there for a morning cappuccino. So nice that this is included.....The main Riviera theater is comfortable and well laid out. We went to Horizons on the 15th floor for High Tea 3X during the cruise - listening to a string quartet while eating your scones, cream and jam (&/or small sandwiches and other pastries), with panoramic views in all directions, is simply wonderful! iv) Not being "nickeled and dimed" - no charge for specialty restaurants, bottles of water provided each time you leave the ship, free specialty coffees and all non-alcoholic drinks, including a stocked mini bar with water, sodas and juice in your stateroom. Bottles water and Gatorade available (for free) in the gym. Snacks and coffee available throughout the day in the Concierge Lounge. With O-Life, cost of excursions covered in the price of the cruise. Free Internet - slow & temperamental so don't get your expectations up but fine for sending emails & checking Sports scores. Even managed to Facetime back home once. Concierge class - we liked the concierge format and when we book next time we will stick with it. We appreciated the access to the Concierge lounge and used it almost daily. The bottle of champagne (real champagne btw) at the beginning of the cruise was a nice touch. We also really enjoyed the Concierge access to the spa whirlpool and deck at the bow of the ship. Being in Concierge class also meant a shorter embarkation, which was helpful. Entertainment - We only attended one show while we were on board but we enjoyed it very much - much better than similar "production" type shows we had seen on Holland America. Otherwise after dinner we were quite happy returning to our room & relaxing there. Excursions/Ports - We took 3 excursions with Oceania during this cruise - best by far was the Beach Break in Barbados. Beach was spectacular & facilities excellent. Island tour of Antigua was OK too but the beach stop at the end of the tour was disappointing - beach was small & very ordinary, nothing spectacular. Excursion to Virgin Gorda by catamaran, then bus in Tortola was a disappointment - small site was completely overrun with tourists and access to caves and baths was difficult, even though we are in decent shape & very mobile. Devil's Bay beach, with imposing boulders, is pretty but it is a small beach and there were too many people there. In St Lucia we just got off the ship briefly to look at the shops around the port but there was nothing in that area to get excited about. Tender at St Barts was a little long & not a great experience but once we got on the island we enjoyed our time there. Explored Gustavia on our own and then made our way to Shell Beach, a pleasant 10-15 minute walk from the tender port. Great place to beachcomb for shells & kept myself busy with a little snorkeling as well. Afterwards enjoyed a drink at Le Gustav with pretty views of the harbor & marina. Overall we thought this was an excellent cruise and liked it so much, we tried to book for the very next one, so we wouldn't have to leave the ship. Unfortunately the following cruise was overbooked and the Oceania Club Ambassador we dealt with was not helpful at all but that is another story. We were extremely happy with our 1st experience with Oceania and only regret not having tried them earlier. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
The date of departure fit our vacation and destination. Viking is still struggling to be an Ocean operator. The crew to passenger ratio seems to be be 1 to 2 or less. Included tours was not worth our time - mainly a bus ride nothing ... Read More
The date of departure fit our vacation and destination. Viking is still struggling to be an Ocean operator. The crew to passenger ratio seems to be be 1 to 2 or less. Included tours was not worth our time - mainly a bus ride nothing worth $200 per person. No Viking staff were on any excursion which was a disappointment. The shore talks reflected the fact that the staff had not been on many, if any, of the tours. The shore excursion reminded me of Oceania when they were just beginning -- I will give them more time to improve. Their embarkation was the best ever - HANDS DOWN! Our cabin was a suite, but had no butler or other amenities one has come to expect on a Luxury Vessel. I agree the Entertainment was hit or miss, mostly miss, but the Paris Review was great and not to be missed. Service at mealtime was terrible (get rid of those handheld devises) and dining room very noisy. Don't be put off by the line after the the shore talks or other get togethers it goes fast, fast than the rest of the meal. Prepare to spend 2 hours or more for dinner. The wait staff seems to be able to do only one table at a time, the waiter has on assistant and has 20 plus dinners to wait on. They are also the bar staff, pouring the wine and getting water and other drinks, When each course is ready the waiter brings it our, that is really hard for a 10 top! Our cabin staff was very good and experienced. we had some problems with the a/c and they were on top of it! I can't say the same for the maintenance staff. The Hotel Manager was on top of thing and the Customer Service Manage was very helpful and ready to assist whenever needed - she seemed to be everywhere. We did not use the Fitness & Recreation area. The overall experience was different I would say. The layout around the pool and Wintergarden was great, Loungers facing out to sea and a very cool area for reading and relaxing. Wonderful areas to play games and talk to fellow passengers. The Explorers Lounge is the most under used area on the ship. Continental type breakfast is served as well as a lite lunch. The 270 degree view will wow the most experienced cruisers. I am not use what they are asking for. The ship does not have many public room but rather long hallways with game tables, chairs and tables and easy chairs and sofas. The value for the money I said was average. I was expecting a luxury cruise and got an up scaled river cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Viking lived up to their reputation. This was the most restful cruise I have ever been on and the crew, although most were fairly new to ocean cruises, were very polite and helpful. The ship was beautiful with their spa like bathroom ... Read More
Viking lived up to their reputation. This was the most restful cruise I have ever been on and the crew, although most were fairly new to ocean cruises, were very polite and helpful. The ship was beautiful with their spa like bathroom (which included heated floors) and the cabin was very clean and modern. The toiletries were name brand and replenished regularly. Selection of movies great, but other TV shows catered to Europeans and not Americans. The food in the World Café was top notch with the food in the dining room being a little less than what I expected (not always hot). Loved having the shore excursions included. The extra touches they provided, like cold bottle water when leaving the ship and cold towels and some times champagne on the return puts them over the top. Shows were professionally done. Only complaint is if you didn't get tickets the second they were available (no charge) you couldn't get into some of the shows (like the Rat Pack) I will definitely be cruising with Viking again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016

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