13 Oceania Marina Cruises for the Disabled Cruise Reviews

We love Oceania for its amazing service and outstanding food quality and variety. We've been sailing on Oceania for the past 15 years and just got off the Marina yesterday. This was an unusual itinerary since it had so many sea days ... Read More
We love Oceania for its amazing service and outstanding food quality and variety. We've been sailing on Oceania for the past 15 years and just got off the Marina yesterday. This was an unusual itinerary since it had so many sea days (which we both love). We boarded the ship in Papette, visited 4 ports in French Polynesia and then sailed to Hawaii and visited 4 island ports there. We sailed 5 days from Kawaii to Los Angeles where we disembarked. We really enjoyed the ship's excursions. We did an excursion in every port. We enjoy nature, birds and photographing beautiful landscapes - we were not disappointed. The Pacific Ocean was as calm as a lake (we were quite lucky). We had perfect weather on every port day and all but one sea day. Our butler proved outstanding service - including room service breakfast on disembarkation day. We have booked a 30 day voyage August, 2019 sailing from London to NYC - visiting Iceland, Greenland and some of Europe. That will complete 31 Oceania cruises for us. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Chose this cruise for itinerary. That was the only good thing. Embarkation in Lima was disgraceful. We arrived at port in taxi dropped off outside the port to be faced with a very large queue no shelter from the blistering heat, no staff ... Read More
Chose this cruise for itinerary. That was the only good thing. Embarkation in Lima was disgraceful. We arrived at port in taxi dropped off outside the port to be faced with a very large queue no shelter from the blistering heat, no staff present. We were then transferred to the ship by bus to be met with an even longer queue, waiting to embark,we even had to unload our own cases from the bus, no porters, no Oceania representatives,no organisation. From time we arrived at port to getting on board took us 3 hours no kidding. General manager eventually appeared claiming to lay blame on port of Lima for not having terminal building. Tendering service was another major issue .Easter island took us 4.30 hrs to get off ship, never experienced a tender service so slow,if you are not doing an excursion with the company you are treat like a second class citizen. After visiting the island and returned to the tender point we were faced with another long queue to get back on board 2.30 hours we waited to get on board. Once again general manager blamed conditions of sea and the clientele , not many spring chickens and various disabilities. Staff behind buffet counters in terrace cafe were very unenthusiastic ,didn't seem to be able to use initiative. Many times in waves grill we appeared invisible, took so long to have table set. Presentation of the food wasn't like it used to be. After rainfall, promenade decks were deadly, deckhands didn't seem to be programmed to clear the large pools of water they preferred to place a sign up warning you the decks were slippery when wet. Outbreak of gastroenteritis did not help matters either. Many of the facilities were closed, staff were also affected, restaurants appeared like staff canteens , paper table cloths, menus etc. TV and Movie channels were poor throughout the cruise. Speciality restaurants were excellent waiting staff there couldn't do enough for you. To sum up ,having cruised with Oceania a few year ago, the quality of the service has gone a long way down hill,does not warrant the premium price of the cruise. Will be very surprised if I am the only one with negative reviews. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We took a 12 day Miami-Miami on December 17, 2017 with stops in Guatemala, Mexico, Honduras, Colon (Panama Canal) Costa Rica, Belize, and Key West. First time on Oceania. Ship: Ideal size, 1250 capacity (we had just over 800 on board), ... Read More
We took a 12 day Miami-Miami on December 17, 2017 with stops in Guatemala, Mexico, Honduras, Colon (Panama Canal) Costa Rica, Belize, and Key West. First time on Oceania. Ship: Ideal size, 1250 capacity (we had just over 800 on board), Very tasteful decor throughout; loaded with original art. Very classy. We had rough seas several days, but we did fine. We do 1/2 of a patch behind the ear. They say you can't cut it, but you can. Works fine... just wash your hands well after applying. Room: Out cabin (7086) was very comfortable, roomy enough, with a very nice veranda. Excellent cabin service. They brought ice twice a day, kept our mini fridge full. Limited television options. Internet was generally good but can only use one device at a time. Cuisine: Overall it was excellent. We had most breakfasts in the Terrace Cafe where they have a buffet but also make items to order. Same at lunch. Really nice 180 outdoor eating area at rear of ship. On he specialty restaurants, we weren't as crazy about Red Ginger, but the others were very good. Only in the Main dining room a few times. A cafe called Waves is by the pool and has great smoothies, shakes, malts, sandwiches, etc. Amenities: laundry on every floor ($2 to wash and $2 to dry- buy tickets at desk, detergent provided). Nice gym with floor to ceiling windows. Fancy spa with fancy prices! Barista is small coffee shop above overlooking the pool with wonderful Illy Italian coffees. Ports: Unlike Key West, most of the other ports were basically industrial. Not like river cruises where you often stop in a pleasant little town and can just walk around if you want. The weather was great but not sure I would take this cruise for sightseeing. Excursions: Little French Cay (booked on our own) was excellent as was their private facility for the Belize stop. The Panama Canal tour in Colon and a tour to Mayan ruins were also worth doing. We would have probably skipped all the others (boat rides to try to see wildlife, 3 hour round trip to see not much of an old castle, etc.). Entertainment: Pretty good for a smaller ship. Young and enthusiastic cast did several shows. Big band was Ukrainian and they were really good, House band at night was good for dancing. Very pleasant pianist in Martinis Bar daily. Alcohol: Rule is that you can bring 3 bottles of wine on board. No, they don't go through your bags, so if you want to throw in liquor... well, whatever. They had two-for-one happy hours at 5:30 in three lounges and at 10:30 in the lounge with band. Unless you just want the convenience of it, the drink packages are way too expensive. Accommodations: They did a good job of working with folks who needed assistance, had walkers, wheelchairs, etc. Room next to us was accessible with large entry door, no step up into the bathroom, etc. Currency: On this route, dollars were preferred. Credit cards no problem, except on excursion balances on privately booked tours. Most require cash for the balance or will charge 15% to use a card. Bottom line: Superb ship, with really good food, and excellent service. Maybe pick a different itinerary than this one if you are really into the ports experiences. On their deal choices, we picked cash, which can be used for gratuities at the end. You can often do better by booking your own excursions as they are pricey from Oceania. They offer future booking options on the ship and we purchased two, so that says something about looking ahead with Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
The itinerary was a main reason for taking this cruise. The staff and food are exceptional. My only complaint is the size and layout of the cabins. We are in a concierge cabin and it's too small. The bathroom is just okay with a ... Read More
The itinerary was a main reason for taking this cruise. The staff and food are exceptional. My only complaint is the size and layout of the cabins. We are in a concierge cabin and it's too small. The bathroom is just okay with a bathtub and separate small stall shower. The closet and drawer space are totally inadequate. I have to move the desk chair to walk between that and the coffee table to get to the terrace. The concierge lounge is a big plus. We often opt to have a continental breakfast there instead of going to one of the dining rooms or ordering room service. The specialty restaurants are good and it's a bonus that there is no up charge for dining in them. My only complaint there is that some of the vegetables were overcooked and soggy. The activities are not as extensive as on other cruises we've been on where there was an interesting lecture every morning and duplicate bridge and a movie every afternoon. On the first segment, with only 1 day at sea, there was duplicate bridge almost every day. 3 days into this longer segment with more sea days and I haven't seen a bridge director Hopefully that will change. The shore excursions have exceeded my expectations. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Excuse my english, I am German. We chose this cruise especially because of starting in Lisboa. Some new ports (Cadiz, Marseille, Portofino) but also known ports - but who can tell, "I know this city". We explored Lisboa for ... Read More
Excuse my english, I am German. We chose this cruise especially because of starting in Lisboa. Some new ports (Cadiz, Marseille, Portofino) but also known ports - but who can tell, "I know this city". We explored Lisboa for 3 days and Rome for 2 days - both much too short ! Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. It is better to order a taxi in Civitavecchia before you cruise. After we were lucky to catch a taxi we found two other couples (by shouting out !) who joined us to different hotels in Rome (65.-€ per person). Second cruise on the Marina. Ship is great, cabin (Veranda) too. Dining is excellent wherever you go, so you need not go to speciality-restaurants; even the buffet is great and comfortable. Service is perfect. We did not like all Entertainments. But we liked "5 o´clock or somewhere" and "Laszlo and Claudia" much. Shore excursions are very good and informative but much too expensive. We had 4 free. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We chose this cruise for the ports. We flew into Barcelona on Sunday before the Tuesday cruise. We loved the Hilton, and had a great time viewing the sites. I had requested wheelchair access transportation, which was prompt and ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the ports. We flew into Barcelona on Sunday before the Tuesday cruise. We loved the Hilton, and had a great time viewing the sites. I had requested wheelchair access transportation, which was prompt and available at the airport. There was a delay getting to the ship, due to traffic. Our room was lovely, spacious and room for wheelchair turn around. there were 2 problems. Our adult daughter slept on the hide a bed, which had an uncomfortable bar in the middle. She put her mattress on the floor to sleep. Staff saw this and brought a second matress, which helped some. However, the sofa bed is just not comfortable. I had difficulties with the height of the bed. it is too high for a direct wheelchair transfer. Luckily my husband can help me, but this could be a problem for someone who has to transfer directly from chair to bed. The overall appearance of the ship is great. Lovely decor, everything is spotless. The service in the dining venues is prompt and friendly. The Asian restaurant did not seem to have enough staff the night we ate there. We did not participate in the ships shore excursions, since they were not accessible for a wheelchair user. We also did not go to the entertainment, as we were usually tired after a day of touring. We really appreciated the crew's assistance in helping me on and off of the ship, especially when the ramps were steep of stairs. The only real complaint was that the request for accessible transportation was not carried forward to leaving the ship to go to the hotel. This was a bit of an ordeal, but the staff did find a cab that worked for us. We had to pay for the cab, after we had paid for the transfers as part of the hotel price. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We had a superb trip, nice people aboard. I have mobility issues so we booked the handicap cabin with Balcony . Oceania have only 6 handicap cabins aboard....for that I fault them. On most cruise line you can book a handicap cabin at ... Read More
We had a superb trip, nice people aboard. I have mobility issues so we booked the handicap cabin with Balcony . Oceania have only 6 handicap cabins aboard....for that I fault them. On most cruise line you can book a handicap cabin at everylevel, but on Oceania there is not much choice. the service from staff is excellent. Grab bars in all public washrooms. Staff carry your food to your table if you eat in Wave or Grill terrace on the 12 th floor. We loved eating on the deck outside in the back of the ship. Internet access was good, very fast early in the morbid or late at night, very slow for obvious reasons during the day. Food was excellent everywhere but our personal favorite was red ginger. Jacques being second. The room was spacious, pool area usually not incredibly busy. In destinations Bora Bora and Moorea were by far our favourites. Embarkation was not great and disembarkation was better. One nice thing is that they allow you to bring your wine (great in Australia and New Zealand) aboard. There is a 25$ corkage fee and if you do bring liquor you can only drink it in your room . All in all a very nice experience Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Marina is a beautiful ship with fabulous food, a really nice salt water pool, a nice fitness center/spa, library and Internet cafe next to coffee shop, enrichment, visual art and culinary classes, putting, ping pong, needlepoint, line ... Read More
Marina is a beautiful ship with fabulous food, a really nice salt water pool, a nice fitness center/spa, library and Internet cafe next to coffee shop, enrichment, visual art and culinary classes, putting, ping pong, needlepoint, line dancing, evening dancing with Big band or the Sligo band and late night theatre. There was Bridge and other card/board games and a Casino. The itinerary was an excellent one on our Papette FP to Charleston SC last month. Each area unique in history! It would take pages to describe the beauty, culture and great people we met along our journey! Would definitely recommend French Polynesia as a destination! We had upgraded last minute to penthouse from veranda. Both are very nice, however the PH closet is really walk in and fabulous. I liked the spacious design of the room as well. Didn't really use Butler for much. He took laundry for pressing and cleaning which any of other stewards do as well. I suppose if you wanted to dine in he would be more helpful as when I ordered breakfast to the room one morning, he set table with tablecloth, glasses and silver and served food like a waiter in the dining room. I enjoyed onboard, the pool, sauna/steam room, art classes, enrichment series, and line dancing. I heard from others the culinary classes were great. I loved the music, from the string quartet to piano bar and the two bands, each different in their own way! Overall the staff was excellent. We had a few quality improvement issues which were addressed with GM. I would like to have seen more daytime music on sea days otherwise all the music venues were great! We changed to handicap room second leg of b2b to one of 4 Veranda HC which was great as we had more room for mobility scooter and other medical equipment. The bathroom gets soaked when you take a shower. It was great for my husband as there was a shower seat. I usually took my showers in the spa! Javier, an excellent Chief Concierge arranged assistance for our departure which made it much easier for my husband, a handicap man on a mobility scooter and many others. We have 2 more upcoming cruises with Oceania. Ships we've been on and love. Sail on! Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
I can't believe I am the first to review this fabulous cruise! Been home four days, and am still glowing. Background information: I am a mobility challenged traveler, but very adventurous. Being dissatisfied with Oceania shore ... Read More
I can't believe I am the first to review this fabulous cruise! Been home four days, and am still glowing. Background information: I am a mobility challenged traveler, but very adventurous. Being dissatisfied with Oceania shore tours on two previous cruises, I arranged private tours for us in most ports, but my husband did take 2 Oceania tours that I did not. Getting to the port of embarkation, Barcelona from our lovely quiet Hotel Gaudi was a snap of a short taxi ride. Embarkation was handled smoothly, including getting our luggage to our room in good shape promptly. No fuss; no hassle, great lunch awaiting us 12 ish. Our Stateroom, 8125 was not far from the rear elevator, which turned out to be a big plus for me: most dining spots, the bridge/card room were located in that end of the ship. This was the largest, nicest stateroom of our three Oceania tours, and we didn't even use all the storage space for a change.Dining? As close to perfection as you can get, including the Terrace Cafe, all four specialty dining rooms, and the Grand Dining Room.For a foodie to make that statement is saying a lot. Tasty, varied menus, consistency, hot food hot, cold food cold; from soup to dessert the food was top notch. We enjoyed eating alone sometimes, but whenever we wanted a table for 4 or 6, we met interesting fellow travelers. Service was outstanding in all respects. The ports on this cruise were much to our liking: Malta, Rhodes, Barcelona, Israel, Crete, Cyprus, and the crown jewel: Istanbul, where we spent 4 days on our own, post cruise. I'm going to mention the private guides we had in most of those ports before I get to the criticism of the Oceania shore tours. Ram_dreng@yahoo.com made Istanbul come alive for us; can't recommend him highly enough. (Ramazan Guloglu)We took taxis everywhere in Istanbul, and they were comfortable, very inexpensive and fun. In Malta: Rita Fsadni: ritafsadni@gmail.com; in Rhodes: Nicholas of Rhodes (taxi) nick-ax@rho.forthnet; in Israel: Mickey of info@guidedtoursisrael.com all did a super job of catering to my mobility limitations while giving grand tours for our small groups we put together, using cruise critic to get other passengers to join us. A quick word about our one complaint: my husband's Oceania tours in Emphasis and Knossis in Crete were sadly lacking. Other passengers complained bitterly about the ship's tours in other ports. One Canadian friend we met muttered "never again!" after an extensive tour of Istanbul at the end of the cruise. There were so many complaints about the quality of the tours that the expensive side of them didn't get as much mention as the poor quality. Back to the positives:a new feature on this cruise were the Culinary Center programs. I took two, and enjoyed the chef/intructor, the recipes, the facility, the reasonable cost of 69/small group hands-on instruction. Other passengers were very pleased with the entertainment; we were just too tired by the end of dinner to partake. String quartet aboard was excellent; we enjoyed the tea most afternoons. Tiny complaint: the chairs in the Marina Lounge were too low and could use replacement. Service on this ship was outstanding in all respects: friendly, helpful, cheerful. We had a prepaid gratuity credit from our travel agent, but we did tip in addition due to total satisfaction with our cabin attendants. Disembarkation handled smoothly on the ship, but it was a madhouse waiting for taxis that we were not involved with, as our Istanbul arranged for a private pickup for us. A caution re Israel: Jerusalem is quite far from Ashdod port; private tours with small vans can get into places the large buses cannot. The Egyptian ports were cancelled due to caution on Oceania's part, but Cairo is VERY far from Port Said, and imho only Oceania tours would be a good idea for future Lands of Time sailings. We've done about 15 cruises previously, but for us, this was the best overall. The ports were wonderful without exception, and no tender service was required. Oceania's Marina crew had its act together, and that added to the experience. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
This is only a short review especially written for people in a wheelchair who are not able to walk some steps or stand. I also apologize to you because of my English! Since my husband and I started to cruise in Fall 2008 this was now ... Read More
This is only a short review especially written for people in a wheelchair who are not able to walk some steps or stand. I also apologize to you because of my English! Since my husband and I started to cruise in Fall 2008 this was now our 17th cruise. The second with Oceania. Last year we were on Nautica from Hongkong to Dubai. When I compare these two ships Marina is the winner. There are more choices of staterooms ( Inside, Outside, Balcony) than on Nautica which has only inside accessible cabins. There I felt like in a dark tomb. There were not enough lights in the room and the furniture was also very dark. On Marina we had a bright outside stateroom. A balcony was not necessary for us in this cold region. The bathroom was large, there was a roll-in shower, a big seat in the shower and I was happy that it was also nice decorated. This is not so often to find! The room itself had a lot of space for a person in a wheelchair. The only problem was the wardrobe. There were very small drawers and it was impossible to put in the sweaters you need in colder regions. The wardrobe itself was too small for a couple and two weeks! But all in all the accessible stateroom was good for a handicapped in a wheelchair. In the ports Oceania offered free shuttle buses to reach the center if the ship was too far away. In Dublin and Reykjavik they were not accessible and so we needed to take a taxi (and pay for). In Belfast the shuttle was accessible. And now there is the point I didn't like Oceania: When we were on Nautica we often had to wait in the heat for a longer time until people come and carry my husband in the wheelchair up into the ship. We thought that this is just a problem with Nautica but it isn't. We had to wait also with Marina longer than necessary. In Belfast we had terrible weather and we waited 20 minutes outside in rain, wind and storm until we could go inside. Celebrity and Royal Caribbean have always people near the ship's door who know how to carry people in wheelchairs. The security people from Oceania must call housekeeping to send assistance. This means that a guest has to wait until the guys from housekeeping find their way and there are also always different people. So you have to tell them every time how to do. That's normal because they are not used to do this but for the guest it is very unpleasant. The easiest for my husband were the two tender ports, because Marina is very good equipped with an elevator down to the boat level and the seamen who are with the tender boats are strong and know how to carry a person in a wheelchair. So my husband unusually felt better at tender ports than at normal ports :-) ! Food, service, room, the ship itself is very nice but keep in mind that, if you are in hot or cold regions Oceania let wait you too long! Embarkation in Dover was easy but disembarkation in Copenhagen seemed not organized. We wanted to stay in a hotel in Copenhagen and needed a taxi. There was not indoor room, the luggage stood outside, some suitcases under a small tent roof. Good luck that it was not raining. The line to the taxis was terrible long and there were no luggage carts. There were some porters but they also had to wait with the people so there were not enough. A luxury cruise ended poor. Read Less
Sail Date June 2012
This was our first time with Oceania cruises and will not be the last Embarkation was quick and simple even with our own wheelchair and although the cabins were not ready till 3.00 we were able to sit in comfortably in a lounge for the ... Read More
This was our first time with Oceania cruises and will not be the last Embarkation was quick and simple even with our own wheelchair and although the cabins were not ready till 3.00 we were able to sit in comfortably in a lounge for the few minutes wait. One minor point for anyone bringing a self propelled wheelchair and expecting to be able to move around the ship independently was that the carpets are so new and thick that it was very hard work to do so and I ended up having to push my husband around, and there is quite a slope up into the theatre ! We had booked an inside cabin as you spend so little time there and it was very good. Always clean with the most comfortable cruise ship beds we have ever had. Storage space looked tight but in fact there was room for everything and although the bathroom was small it had everything you needed and no dreaded shower curtain. Our cabin steward was great, stored our suitcases which did not fit under the bed, often opened the door for us to make manipulating the wheelchair easier and asked if there was anything he could do to help us, finally removing the coffee table so it was easier to store the wheelchair. We eat mainly in the main dining room and were a bit concerned about anytime dining having heard of long queues on other ships but found that provided we went down before 7.30 in the evening there was no queue and the dining staff would always make sure we had an easily accessible table. We ate in Pepin's, Toscana and the Polo Grill which were all excellent but did not take up our possible booking for Red Ginger as my husband does not like such food - there did not seem to be an option for only one of you to book ! We did not try the self service restaurant other than for coffee as it is too difficult with a wheelchair passenger. It was pleasant that the main dining room was open for lunch every day as so many ships now only provide this on sea days, and it was never crowded. We tried the main dining room for breakfast but soon decided to be lazy and order room service, again this is the only ship we have ever been on where everything we ordered arrived correctly every time ! We enjoyed the inclusive soft drinks, waters and coffees, and found the price for a bottle of easy drinking wine to be comparable with other cruise lines, and were very surprised to find that even with anytime dining and also using the speciality restaurants if you did not finish the bottle the staff would always save it for you and retrieve it the next night. Evening entertainment was surprisingly good, both guest artistes and production shows for a ship this time, and the singers could actually sing. It was also good that the ship's own orchestra was not as brassy as some of the larger ones. Entertainment during the day was fairly predictable and the program could have offered more however with the very small entertainment staff this may not have been possible. The library was excellent, I could always find something to read, and the coffee shop served wonderful frappucinos - lovely in the late afternoon. We did not book any excursions due to concerns about being able to use the wheelchair but found the tour staff helpful, for example advising us in the Turks and Caicos and it was not worth trying to go into the town as it would be difficult, but on the other hand St. Croix was very easy to get around with the wheelchair. One minor complaint was that even the lower gangway was quite steep and had two steps at the shore end rather than a ramp, and there was not always anyone around to assist with the wheelchair. Sadly my husband had two suspected heart attacks while on the ship, from which fortunately he recovered very quickly and has had no lasting effects. I cannot thank the crew's medical staff sufficiently for the care and attention he received, I will never worry about being taken ill on a cruise ship, they were fantastic. Finally does anyone know how to get public liability insurance to take a collapsible mobility scooter to the US ? We had been advised that because we were staying a couple of nights in Miami we would need this cover but could not find any way of arranging this from the UK? because of this we took a wheelchair instead but the scooter would have been much better Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
Introduction: We are veteran cruisers and travelers, having taken 19 cruises on a variety of cruise lines over 30 years, including Disney, Oceania, RCI, Princess, Cunard and Holland America. We are in our mid-fifties, with no children. In ... Read More
Introduction: We are veteran cruisers and travelers, having taken 19 cruises on a variety of cruise lines over 30 years, including Disney, Oceania, RCI, Princess, Cunard and Holland America. We are in our mid-fifties, with no children. In recent years, I have had some disabilities due to arthritis, requiring the use of a cane or a travel wheelchair. Our cruise on Marina that embarked in Venice on September 7 is our second on OCL. The cruise called at Koper, Slovenia; Dubrovnik, Croatia; Kotor, Montenegro; Corfu, Patras, Zakynthos, Athens and Chios, Greece; and Kusadasi and Istanbul, Turkey. Other than Venice, this cruise took us to five new countries that we have not visited before (one of the reasons we selected the cruise). Pre-cruise hotel and flights: We booked our own flights using frequent flyer miles, electing to spend a night in Frankfurt before arriving in Venice and again on our way back to the US from Istanbul (our disembarkation port). In Venice, we stayed at the delightful Westin Europa and Regina; although quite expensive, this beautiful hotel had excellent service and views of the Grand Canal and Lagoon that were worth the price of admission. Embarkation: Using a water taxi service, we traveled from our hotel to the terminal. We were on board within a few minutes of our arrival at the terminal (very efficient service). Stateroom: Our stateroom, a PH2 (Penthouse) suite on the 11th deck forward port side was ready when we boarded at 1:30 pm. Our original booking for this cruise was in an A3 concierge veranda. A month prior to the cruise, OCL made a very good offer on an upgrade to the PH2 category. The saddest aspect of our decision to upgrade is that it will be very, very difficult to ever go back to a "regular" veranda stateroom again!. This suite was magnificent and is the best room we have ever had on a cruise. We had so much space, including a walk-in closet (great for storing my collapsible wheelchair) and a large sitting area, a large desk and vanity stand, plus a huge bathroom with tub and shower. I have read previous reviews of Marina and the concerns for the rain head shower space, but we loved this shower (apparently the suites have a larger shower stall). The room was elegantly decorated and very quiet. The bed was incredibly comfortable. Other reviews have noted that deck 12 has a large overhang over the deck 11 verandas, but we did not find this to be a problem and it often served to block the direct sun. We spent many hours on that veranda because we had such warm weather on our cruise. Ship: The public spaces on Marina are elegant and understated. Although I'm not a big fan of abstract art, which predominates. the decor is restful and unobtrusive. The seats in some areas were a little too low (most of them in Horizons lounge), but we found other options that were more comfortable. Our biggest complaint about the ship design would be the difficulty getting on and off the ship, whether docked or anchored, for a person who doesn't walk very well. The normal egress when docked is from deck 5, down many stairs to the dock area; I did this once, taking each step one at a time, and was shocked to have a fellow passenger waiting at the bottom to come up berate me for taking so long (can't pick your fellow passengers, I guess). Other times we used the deck 4 crew exit, ramp but even this ramp was very steep at times and we looked at other ships docked nearby with nearly flat ramps leading onto the docks and wondered what happened when they designed Marina. Tender access was also challenging, requiring us to go down many steps from deck 4 into the tender. The tenders were strangely designed, with most passengers required to go down additional narrow steps once on board into seating areas across from other passengers. I certainly would not want to be on these tenders for an extended period of time in an emergency situation. Dining: The food on Marina was absolutely outstanding and is, of course, one of the big reasons that customers come back to OCL. We ate in all four specialty restaurants and could not honestly say which one was the best and we would eagerly try all four again if given the opportunity. The Terrace cafe was also a top choice and most of our non-reservation dinners were in this buffet option. We only visited the Grand Dining Room once; although this is a lovely space, we much preferred the specialty restaurants and the outdoor experience at the Terrace. Waves had the usual complement of excellent sandwiches and salads (Kobe beef burger - yum!) and we liked having a light continental breakfast at Barista's on many early mornings; we didn't try the specialty coffees, being die-hard "American" coffee drinkers. The ultimate experience, however, was our night at La Reserve. This seven-course trip to culinary heaven was accompanied by some excellent wines and was certainly worth the premium charge of $75 per person. Service: Service on Marina was impeccable, with a couple of minor exceptions. The wait staff in the specialty restaurants were superb, especially the staff in Toscana and Red Ginger. The bar staff and wine stewards were delightful and we had great conversations with many of them. The staff at Barista's and the Terrace cafe was wonderful. Our butler was a terrific guy who found us to be somewhat perplexed on how to use his services, so he took it upon himself to bring us some canapes every evening and he worked out a change to a specialty restaurant reservation without any issues. Our room attendant was extremely efficient and kept our suite in top condition. Crew members, including ones that normally don't interface with the passengers, were very helpful getting me on and off the ship (not easy in any case, whether docked or anchored, as noted above). The only exceptions to our glowing reports on service are the staff at the reception desk and the wait staff in the Grand Dining Room, whom we barely recall seeing (although they did serve food promptly). The reception desk left us a very tersely worded letter at our stateroom about getting our passports turned in immediately for Turkish customs processing halfway through the cruise (we needed them with us for Slovenia and Croatia), but we never heard any announcements about this request or saw it in the daily newsletter. Other passengers complained about the letter and its language as well. The reception staff were also quite unfriendly. The destination services desk did take down information from us on a very disappointing shore excursion and sent us a letter thanking us for our input; although no reimbursement was offered. Activities: We signed up for one of the Bon Appetit culinary classes on board and really had a blast! Chef Kelly and her staff were a lot of fun to work with and our end results were delightful (Italian favorites). Unfortunately, the class was interrupted by the mandatory life boat drill, but that almost added to the experience when we showed up in the Marina Lounge in our aprons! We didn't do any other activities on board. We did not use the spa services and we usually don't use the pool. Shopping: Marina has some beautiful boutiques, but the products, for the most part, did not appeal to us. There was a very limited selection of logo wear, which we like to purchase on cruises and there were no items that were from our ports of call. I usually don't go on a cruise to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on jewelry or clothing that I can get at home. Internet access: As usual, Internet access was expensive and slow, although not as slow as some other cruises we have been on. We used our own equipment for access (iPads and laptop). I stretched my 300 minutes through almost the entire cruise; my hubby, who had to keep in touch for his business, used 800 minutes. Entertainment: We are notorious entertainment avoiders on cruise ships and have been for years (even on Disney, which has remarkable entertainment). We prefer sitting in a quiet lounge or on the veranda, sipping a drink and reading. We did not see any of the shows on board, but we did get some laughs at Karaoke night in the Horizons lounge one night. In fact, we never even turned on the TV in our room! Port and shore excursions: We booked two excursions through OCL and did private tours or our own explorations in all other cases. The two ship excursions were overpriced and the experiences were mediocre or downright disappointing. In Slovenia, we did an excursion to Lake Bled, an admittedly gorgeous location, that was advertised as "wheelchair accessible". What this meant was that my travel wheelchair got to spend the entire excursion in the luggage compartment of the bus! The stops on this excursion were not accessible and i ended up sitting 45 minutes on the bus while others explored the castle overlooking the lake and also sat on a bench on the shore on the lake island because the famous church was "only" 99 steps above me Our other excursion was in Istanbul and it was acceptable, but certainly not worth the price. All of our private tours were excellent, however. We used Dubrovnik Private Tours, Corfu Taxi Tours, George the Taxi Driver (Athens) and Kusadasi Tours (Turkey Explorers) and certainly had no real complaints. We also rented a car on Chios and had a marvelous day and only spent $70 for the experience!. After many cruises where we played it "safe" and signed up for ship tours in most places, this cruise reinforced my opinion that those tours should be the last option of choice. Our favorite ports were Dubrovnik, Chios, Kotor and Kusadasi (plus we love Venice). Greece is unfortunately showing many signs of its financial difficulties, particularly in Patras and Athens. Disembarkation: We disembarked in Istanbul; it was nearly gridlock leaving the port area due to so many ships in port, but we did to the airport in plenty of time with our ship transfer for our flight to Frankfurt. Summary: Our cruise was an excellent experience, with the minor exceptions noted above. We have already booked another OCL cruise next year (on Marina again) and just bit the bullet and upgraded to a PH2 category again. We have not tried any other premium or luxury cruise lines, so we have no basis of comparison, but we are generally quite pleased with the Oceania experience. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
A few of weeks have elapsed since we disembarked m/v Marina with a nostalgic view of the White Cliffs of Dover, marking the end of a wonderful voyage, "The Route of the Vikings." This was our fourth "O" experience so ... Read More
A few of weeks have elapsed since we disembarked m/v Marina with a nostalgic view of the White Cliffs of Dover, marking the end of a wonderful voyage, "The Route of the Vikings." This was our fourth "O" experience so our review is, in some areas, a comparative one with the line's "R" vessels. We have sailed on many cruises over the past 40 years, both main line and luxury, so feel very qualified to present this review. This voyage represented the first part of a celebration of our diamond wedding, (60 years). We have some mobility issues but are not dependant on walking aides. Our air transportation to Copenhagen and return from LHR was arranged by "O" with extensions on both ends. Their arrangements were very convenient and well planned. On our arrival at the dock in Copenhagen at the suggested boarding time, we were greeted with a smile by "O" baggage handlers; our cases quickly unloaded from the taxi and were promptly given directions to a pathway which led to a desk where we were given numbered tickets representing the order in which we would be escorted to the registration desks. After waiting about 10 minutes in the tented area our number was called. After a short wait we were directed to one of the many computer stations where all the formalities of registration were quickly accomplished. The first challenge we faced was the boarding ramp. At a 40-45° angle this was to prove a little difficult for us to navigate. Crew quickly took our carry-on baggage and assisted us to ascend the ramp. As has been suggested in a previous review of Marina, why is there not a boarding ramp to deck 4 for those with mobility challenges? As soon as we boarded and were greeted with the always smiling faces of the welcoming crew we were directed to the Terrace Cafe on deck 12. A sumptuous buffet awaited us, served by staff who welcomed us to the ship. A short time after eating a PA announcement advised us our room on deck 9, an A3 concierge stateroom close to the aft elevator which gave us easy access to the main restaurants, was ready for us. Our room seemed a little larger than a comparative stateroom on the "R" ships with a larger balcony. (Unfortunately not to be used too many times on this voyage.) There was ample storage for hanging garments but the design of the drawers we thought was a little strange. Their shapes were not really conducive to storing folded garments. We were able to use the shower with no problem, loved the water wand and the rain shower head was really nice. Our only complaint was the soap dish. You would think that having spent $1/2B on designing and building this beautiful ship the designers of the soap dishes could devise one which actually holds the soap. As soon as the bar of soap had been used a few times it fell through the front of the container! In comparison to the "R" ships, the bathroom is a great improvement but, because of the wasted space for the tub and the lousy soap dish design, only a B rating. We had the opportunity of dining in all 4 of the specialty restaurants, the GDR, the Terrace and Waves. We were of the opinion that the offerings in the GDR were not as varied as we remember from previous voyages on the "R" ships and on several nights we opted for the very wide offerings in the Terrace restaurant which we rated as excellent in all respects, food, service, (assistance in carrying one's plate from the buffet to the table,) and friendly placement of tables enabling, if desired, conversation with nearby fellow cruisers. As food is such a subjective topic all we can say that except for an overcooked filet steak in Polo and two undercooked veal chops in Toscanna, (very quickly and with apology replaced,) our gastronomic experience aboard Marina we would rate an A. As usual, aboard Oceania ships we were not at all impressed by the entertainment. Having third rate vaudeville acts from the Ukraine just doesn't make it. The boys and girls of the song and dance team, rather overdressed for the occasions that they performed, (too many times, IMHO) did a credible job but many US HS groups could have performed equally. Again, a subjective opinion is the ever-present "O" string quartet. In our opinion not the sort of music we either enjoy or find necessary on a luxury cruise. We will give the orchestra an A rating. They provided a good dance tempo for the several of us who enjoyed their sessions and supported the rest of the shows very well. The destinations on this cold weather cruise were excellent for viewing some spectacular scenery and visiting some interesting ports in N. Europe. Thanks to fellow passenger, David Ribnick, (a self acclaimed weather guru,) whose influence with the weather gave us sunny skies, calm seas and dry conditions on 80% of the cruise. Apart from the Flam train excursion, we planned private tours at most destinations and had several CC members join us. We were most fortunate that all of these tours, eagerly anticipated by both us and our new friends, proved to be more than expected. There is a considerable monitory saving in pre-planning these excursions over the ship sponsored ones. Together with the personal attention of excellent guides, easier access to vehicles, more flexibility of destinations there is the opportunity to discuss local issues with the guides. In the ports we had shared tours, all the guides were local people who knew the territory well. The destination was also the ship itself. Looking at pictures of the beautiful Marina it looked awfully large as compared with the "R" ships with a pax load almost twice as large. We were pleasantly surprised at the lack of crowds in any location, (with the exception of the Terrace at lunch on one sea day.) We had especially reserved a stateroom close to the aft elevators so we were in easy walking distance to dining areas. Yes, at times the elevators gave some frustration but no more than usual. The washing machines were available each time we needed to use them. We were always able to get the dining accommodation we sought with no waiting; extra specialty restaurant reservations from the very accommodating restaurant concierge in the main lobby and seating in the show room with no problem. Disembarkation was a breeze with no crowding or rushing. All in all the ship's planners did a good job in eliminating crowed areas. The key question! Would we want to cruise aboard the Marina again? Yes, yes, yes! How does it compare with the "R" ships? It's newer, it has more facilities to offer, but whenever we have the opportunity to sail on "O" it will depend on the destinations not the ship. We will recommend them to our friends and our recommendation will be unconditional. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
Marina Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.5
Dining 4.5 4.5
Entertainment 3.0 3.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 1.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.1
Enrichment 5.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 3.9

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