3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this one over one that we had booked on the MSC Seaside because it included a stop in Cuba and one other country that we had not been to before in the Western Caribbean. We (my wife and I) also had her two brothers along for a ... Read More
We chose this one over one that we had booked on the MSC Seaside because it included a stop in Cuba and one other country that we had not been to before in the Western Caribbean. We (my wife and I) also had her two brothers along for a much needed vacation and we had wanted to see if Oceania cruises would live up to all the hype especially their cuisine. The food was very good, among the best we have had on cruises. Even though the choices on the buffet were limited what they had tasted very good and the sushi for dinner was the best that I had on any cruise. For breakfast I had to see how their lox (smoked salmon) stacked up against the best that I had on a cruise (Royal Caribbean 2006) and they came in a credible second to that one. Specialty restaurants didn't disappoint although they weren't the best we have eaten at they were good. At least the lobster I had on Oceania was better than that on board a recent Regent cruise. Our excursions were all enjoyable and nicely different from the typical cruise line fare. There were a couple of ports that Oceania didn't offer much if any that were exciting or even remotely interesting so we opted to get others from outside companies. The one we got for Cozumel, the Mayan Kun Che Park, was awesome and one that I would recommend to anyone who wasn't interested in visiting the ruins. This was the first time in several cruises that we didn't get a suite and I felt the squeeze in all aspects. We had a veranda room w/concierge and walk around room was minimal - the two of us couldn't go past the bed at the same time. Speaking of the bed, it was a queen bed, had no space under it to store our large suitcases. It has been decades since we shared one that small. The bathroom was large though and that could have had the bathtub taken out to add another 30 sq.feet to the room itself. As it was the only use the tub got was as storage for our suitcases. The staff was uniformly friendly, courteous and bent over backwards to accommodate our every need except for one exception - our concierge. First of all he never bothered to introduce himself when we arrived and a day or two into our cruise I noticed that one of our excursions was different than what we had wanted so I gave him a call and asked him if he would try to get it changed - a normal enough task for a concierge. His response: "You will have to go to Destination Services and ask them yourself." We went on a NCL cruise and had a concierge then who was outstanding. If I had asked him the same thing he would have wanted to know the numbers of both excursions and then would have gotten back to me within two hours with an answer. We never bothered this so called concierge again since it was obvious to us that he didn't want to do his job. I have to say this was the easiest disembarkation that we ever had. Even though we were given a time to get off the ship once we got down to the gangway level we were told that we could just leave - no muss, no fuss, no waiting for our tag color and number to be called. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy. All in all, we enjoyed the cruise and if Oceania has another itinerary that we like will consider them again. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We've cruised about 20 times and had sailed with Oceania twice in the past, including another cruise on Riviera. We absolutely loved it. Oceania had become our favorite cruise line. Not any more. We were among many passengers we spoke ... Read More
We've cruised about 20 times and had sailed with Oceania twice in the past, including another cruise on Riviera. We absolutely loved it. Oceania had become our favorite cruise line. Not any more. We were among many passengers we spoke with who felt the same way. Always known for outstanding food, that's no longer the case. Perhaps half of the time the food was very good, The rest of the time it was very average, far too frequently bland or over-cooked. The buffet was especially boring but even the speciality restaurants were disappointing. The ship itself was often unpleasant. It was so cold in many of the public areas that we simply couldn't stay in that venue even though we were dressed in warmer clothing. They actually were offering blankets to guests in Red Ginger restaurant. Our Concierge level Veranda cabin was fine. Bed was comfortable. However, the closet doors banged together all night and we had to shove towels between them to keep them quiet. I don't recall the bathroom being so small, nor do I remember that it had a bathtub with shower and a separate walk-in shower. The sink area was tiny. I don't understand why there were two showers in such a small space. Perhaps the walk-in shower was added to accommodate the elderly passengers. The average age on the ship appeared to be in the early 80's. I'm not young, but I felt as though I had been allowed on a ship chartered by a nursing home. Not exaggerating! Most of the crew members were extremely nice and accommodating, especially the cabin stewards. We chose not to participate in many activities, so I cannot rate that part of the cruise. According to our pre-cruise itinerary we were supposed to be in Cuba from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM. We booked a 3-hr shore excursion scheduled for 8:30. We weren't able to get on the bus until 10:30, thereby losing 2 hours in port. To make matters worse, the ship left at 5:00 instead of 6:00, meaning we lost another hour. We had to be back on the ship at 4:30, which left us with just 3 hours after our excursion to enjoy Havana instead of the 6 hours we had expected. We loved Havana and were sad that we had so little time there. We're unsure whether or not we'll sail with Oceania again. We may, but it won't be on Riviera. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We booked this cruise because of the itinerary. It was a 14 day mostly southern Caribbean Cruise. 2 sea days out of Miami and two sea days coming back at the end with 8 stops in between and 5 of those were places we had never been to. The ... Read More
We booked this cruise because of the itinerary. It was a 14 day mostly southern Caribbean Cruise. 2 sea days out of Miami and two sea days coming back at the end with 8 stops in between and 5 of those were places we had never been to. The stops were all mostly great, except for 2 I would not go back to/ Riviera is a larger size ship in the Oceania line up but still pretty small in comparison to other cruise liners (approx. 1,200 passengers at capacity I believe although it was not at capacity on our cruise). Layout of the ship was good and the pool on the Lido deck is quite large compared to others I've experienced. 4 specialty eateries plus the Grand Dinning Room and of course the buffet give you lots of dinning options. The food was very good overall but I found the selection in the dinning room at dinner not much to my liking. The specialty places were better as was the buffet; surprisingly. We ate breakfast and lunch in the Waves Cafe which is a covered but open deck area on the Lido deck. It was faster and not as busy as the buffet, The buffet had more food options but the cafe was suitable for our needs. There was also a great ice cream place there where you could get milk shakes and well as ice cream in cones or in a dish, Smoothies were served there in the morning. Cabin and balcony were pretty standard although you could not fit an empty suitcase under the bed for storage, which is a first for us, You had to open them and lay flat to get them under the beds (very strange). The bathroom was the great part. Full tub with shower PLUS a stand alone shower as well with actual glass door rather then just a shower curtain! That set up was great! It's an older crowd you'll be sailing with so leave the kids and teens at home - they won't have much company if you take them along. We prefer sailing on small ships as you get to meet more people it seems, particularly if you choose to share a table at dinner in any of the eateries. One thing that I though was odd were the vibrations I could feel at certain spots on the ship. In the Grand Dinning Room (stern of the ship) and in the Waves Grill/Cafe (mid-ship) there was a noticeable and annoying vibration. I have not noticed that on any ship I have sailed on in the past. Overall, a very nice experience as service was excellent in all aspects of the cruise. Entertainment was good at times and poor at other times but that depends on your likes and dislikes I suppose. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
The itinerary was the main attraction, plus decent reviews. I'll start with the positives. Embarkation was easy. Service in all areas was really good. End of positives. The ship rode poorly, even in fairly calm seas. ... Read More
The itinerary was the main attraction, plus decent reviews. I'll start with the positives. Embarkation was easy. Service in all areas was really good. End of positives. The ship rode poorly, even in fairly calm seas. Constant bumping noises & feelings for the first 2 days , for no apparent reason. Stateroom ( Concierge Veranda ) - lots of creaking noises - had to jam pieces of cardboard in several areas so we could sleep. Also way too small for the price. Veranda tiny. Cruise director - loud PA announcements as early as 7:45 - could not possibly sleep late if you so desired. Unnecessary announcements several times a day - just repeating the info in the daily newsletter. Food - sometimes very good, but quite a few times inedible. This was true in all dining rooms. Food mostly bland, possibly catering to the passenger makeup - average age was well into the eighties. Lunch buffet pathetic. If you wanted a drink pre-dinner, good luck finding a seat. Extremely limited. Shows - mediocre. One comedian was really good, all other shows no better than the lower priced ships. No way we would ever sail with Oceania again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Let me start with the entertainment. First Rate. 12 Person very high end team dancers and Singers. Great shows. We saw three different shows in ten days. So well produced and choreographed. Beautiful costumes with many changes. And ... Read More
Let me start with the entertainment. First Rate. 12 Person very high end team dancers and Singers. Great shows. We saw three different shows in ten days. So well produced and choreographed. Beautiful costumes with many changes. And excellent recorded music. Sets and background video images on screens. Of the forty cruises we have been on, on Cunard, HA, Seabourn, Silversea, Regent and Celebrity, and Oceania, this is the best set of shows we have ever seen and the most talented entertainers. We have sat through some real snooze cruise shows over the years and honestly we were so impressed with this team and the shows themselves. Handsome young men and beautiful girls, all well choreographed, talented and produced.I cannot enough. The pool deck chairs, while packed in like sardines, are very comfortable. Very thick chair pads and towel covers. Unlike some competitors, who provide no chair pads. Oh my aching back. Food on board Oceania is said to be the best at sea, and the 4 specialty restaurants of Asian (Red Ginger), Jacques the signature French of Jacques Pepin, the Italian Toscana and the grill Polo Lounge all provide really knockout and authentic meals. High end ingredients used and great chefs that produce truly fine dining experiences. The MDR itself is also very good, and service superb throughout the ship's restaurants. Very attentive and competent waiting staff. Buffet in the Terrace is so dull and boring, although many onboard could not wait to fill their plates and stomachs. Speaking of which, many oversize anatomies on board. Growing worse we have observed over the years. The cabins are very nice. We had any A class cabin, and while the bathroom is small, the size of the cabin and balcony was fine for a ten day cruise of the Caribbean. Anything longer we would have opted for a more spacious P cabin with a walk in closet and more interior space.. Officer staff removed and not very passenger interactive or friendly. Not a good mark for Oceania. Captain made his daily announcements but was a ghost. The ship itself is only 5 or 6 years old and very modern. Very open with lots of public space and bars. Martinis is the place for cocktails. Ship sails well, but the Caribbean seas were calm throughout the ten days. The drinks packages offered were fair priced, and the wines included drinkable if not great. All typical of what passes for wine lists on all cruise lines today. Bottle a la carte prices exorbitant for the product available. Horrendous boarding experience in Miami. Oceania should be ashamed, even though some of it was caused by the unfortunate death of a crew person and ship's late arrival.. But no command presence on the ground to handle the huge backed up crowd waiting to board, and very poor communications. It almost got out of control. Not a bright spot on this cruise, but fortunately it was not a harbinger of bad things to come as many feared. All in all Oceania continues to do a very good job, even under NCL ownership. Many fears have been allayed. The product is the same as it first was for us ten years ago when we first sailed with Oceania, which is very good indeed .And the ships size of 1250 passengers while large for us was not too problematic, except for sea days when the sardine factory on the pool deck was overactive. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
I prefer cruises to interesting destinations. Caribbean cruises involve visiting tropical flea markets, but we enjoy the shipboard experience. We took an Oceania cruise to Alaska 6 months earlier and enjoyed it very much. The food ... Read More
I prefer cruises to interesting destinations. Caribbean cruises involve visiting tropical flea markets, but we enjoy the shipboard experience. We took an Oceania cruise to Alaska 6 months earlier and enjoyed it very much. The food quality in the main dining room was not as good as our Alaskan cruise. It deteriorated markedly. The food quality and menu selection were disappointing. The specialty restaurants were superb, but Oceania limits the number of visits during each cruise. Also, the quality of room service also deteriorated. For example, the French onion soup at the specialty restaurant was excellent but barely edible for room service. We had a balcony room. Because of its location, it was nearly twice as large as the others. The in-room television programming was terrible. Oceania cruisers are older and spend more time in the rooms. Three years ago, we took a Viking river cruise that had on-demand programming. Oceania needs to step up. The Internet service is sub-par. Other companies have upgraded transmission speeds, and Oceania should keep up. The gym is adequate. I suggest they invest in a variety of kettlebells. They also have a trunk flexion machine that damages the spine. I enjoy playing video poker, but their machines are a rip-off. Installing some 9-6 machines wouldn’t impact their bottom line. I won’t play their machines, so they have no chance to take my money. I like Oceania and have booked a cruise to Tahiti. However, if they don’t step up, we’re going to go with another company. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Chose this ship because we had enjoyed it before. Sailed on it the season it came out. It was wonderful then. Now it is old and tired. The gdr selections were poor. Had to send back our food twice. We had reason to use the ... Read More
Chose this ship because we had enjoyed it before. Sailed on it the season it came out. It was wonderful then. Now it is old and tired. The gdr selections were poor. Had to send back our food twice. We had reason to use the medical facility. I understand i had to pay extrra, but they chased me for the fifty dollar fee like i hadn't paid a small fortune to be on the ship to begin with. After we used our four speciality rest. Reservatins had to endure the feeling of not knowing somebody to get another reservation. Not a way to feel special or part of a luxory cruise. The cruise started with a two hour wait to board in miami.we were crammed together like sardines. No one attempted to explain why. The shows were poor and at bad times. The internet service was slow. There was no tv programing or on line movies. The fight for deck chairs was nuts. I will not sail with oceania again. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
First time back To Oceania after 10 years - very impressed w/ ship and crew! I would sail w/ them again. Pros Ship and it's condition Service Food Overall Room comfort Decent Internet Cons MDR menus were very ... Read More
First time back To Oceania after 10 years - very impressed w/ ship and crew! I would sail w/ them again. Pros Ship and it's condition Service Food Overall Room comfort Decent Internet Cons MDR menus were very weak( new menu I was told)- more passengers ate in the eve buffet than MDR every night! MDR overall- were inflexible on menu choices,take it or leave it! Shore tours were extremely poor ,they do not measure up to Oceania's standards.They would be better off NOT to offer some of the shore tours than to allow the joke island tours! Worst of any cruise we have taken! Embarkation was delayed for over 3 hours- passengers were not informed as to the delay.It was complete chaos,confusion beginning w/ luggage at the curb,most passengers were confused because of no information provided. As it turned out we found out later while we were onboard that Oceania was dealing w/ a significant problem at the dock.This could of been handled better. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
This was my fourth and last cruise on Oceania; although we said that after our third Oceania cruise. We are seniors and don't move quickly ourselves, but the number of people on walkers, using canes and oxygen tents and in ... Read More
This was my fourth and last cruise on Oceania; although we said that after our third Oceania cruise. We are seniors and don't move quickly ourselves, but the number of people on walkers, using canes and oxygen tents and in wheelchairs can cause frustration onboard as many don't feel the need to allow others to pass. Instead they spread out across the hallway, preventing people from passing. It is even more frustrating during shore excursions waiting for the nearly disabled to get on and off busses. Most of us will reach that point in our lives and I'm sorry to be mean, but at that point, it would be considerate to do private tours instead of group excursions. And, seriously, just like driving, if you're slow, stay to the right so others can pass you on the left. It is generally acknowledged by repeat customers that Oceania's weakness is the shore excursion. So often, especially in poor countries, the transportation is unsatisfactory; that is, too small with filthy upholstery. Too many people with bad knees, bad backs, etc. all vying for the few comfortable seats on a bus that was built by the Japanese for Japanese, not for fat Americans or tall people. The trip to Bois Cotlette in Domica (and back) was actually painful! The bus was way too small for "gordos Americanos," not to mention the tall people. Oceania needs to check out the transportation and include these facts in their Description before people spend their money on a three-hour cruise that turned into four hours, two of which were physically painful due to the size and configuration of the bus. Oh -- have an older person review the bus, not a young, lithe, healthy 20-year-old. The food is touted as "the finest at sea." That might be the case, the food is very good. Prices have increased quite a bit. I paid $15 for a Wine Tasting in 2012. In 2018, we paid $75 per person. Bottles of Heineken have gone from $5 in 2011 to $7.50 today. Looking at my Scrapbooks from 2011, 2012, 2016 and now: There has been a steady decline in the quality of the Champagne that is in our suite upon arrival as well as in the number and selection of "welcome treats." From six to five to four. This is the first time we encountered a Sommelier who kept trying to upsell us. I wanted a single glass of Reisling for a single dish. Somehow, he convinced us to buy the bottle. As a rule, neither my husband nor I like Reisling. It took us three days to finish it off, because we don't like it. At the same time, that same Sommelier convinced us to sign up for the wine tasting at $75 pp. Then, at lunch another day, I wanted a single glass of red wine to go with a steak. Same Sommelier once again tried to get me to buy a bottle. I told him "Please don't try to upsell me. I'm still trying to finish off that bottle of Reisling we didn't want." The other Sommeliers didn't do that BUT on two or maybe even three separate occasions, the Sommeliers did forget to give my husband the 15% discount to which he was entitled. He had bought a liquor package for himself. It included certain drinks for free (but not all drinks, so beware) plus 15% off bottles of wines. On two occasions, the Sommelier forgot the discount and my husband signed without looking. I'd see the receipt the next day and then Hubby would have to go to Reception to have obtain a credit for the "forgotten" discount. Made us wonder if they haven't put the Sommeliers on commission; you know, salary + commission. I've been to the Canyon Ranch Spa-at-Sea twice during four cruises. Had an issue the first time; don't remember what it was. But this time it was a "hair appointment gone terribly wrong." What my hairdresser does in two hours (highlights, lowlights and a cut) took three hours at Canyon Ranch! I didn't get highlights and lowlights; I left completely blonde which is not what I had asked for when I made the appointment or when I arrived or at any time during the appointment. The young female hairdresser wouldn't cut my hair short. "Short." "Around the ears short." Finally, "What part of short, around-the-ears-short, do you not understand?" So she whacked off a piece of what was by then dry hair and it stuck out of the side of my head! I panicked and asked for the manager who immediately handed me off to Thalmo who finished the job, and had me out of the chair in 15 minutes. Not exactly the cut I wanted, but close enough. He had to work with what the other hairdresser started. The Spa totally overcharged me, as the Manager later admitted. I was initially charged for "roots" and "all over" color. Aren't roots part of "all over?" Especially when the hair is very short. Here is what I later learned: At-sea spas use their at-sea spas as a training ground. So you're paying for the Canyon Ranch Spa name -- paying A LOT for that name -- BUT you're often getting a trainee and should, therefore, be paying "beauty college" prices. What a rip off!!!! I highly recommend you stay out of the Canyon Ranch Spa which has no incentive to make things right. They have a captive audience. The Concierge for Oceania responded to our mid-cruise Survey. He addressed Oceania-related concerns and assured me that the manager from the spa would contact me my spa-related concern(s). Every time I saw him I'd say "Carlos, I haven't heard from the spa." I finally told him that she'll never call because she knows she's wrong but has no incentive to make their customers happy because Oceania has guaranteed their business survivability. Finally, the spa manager left a message telling me that I had been over-charged and she was making a partial refund. Because that appointment ran so long, we missed the Captain's Welcome Dinner. (Carlos the Concierge stayed on top of this. Kudos to Carlos.) My husband and I enjoy a cocktail or two before dinner. We like to get dressed, go to Tea and then go to a bar and sip drinks and relax. For the first time aboard Oceania, we found it difficult to do so. We went into Martinis one evening and the Cruise Director was on a microphone calling out Trivial Pursuit questions. He invited us to play but we didn't want to play; we wanted to sit at a bar, drink, maybe chat, maybe listen to piano music. Instead, we had one bar and left. Another bar is now being used for cornholing; or "Baggo," as they call it. Seriously, they are now using two bars for games. And there aren't that many bars on board the ship as it is. Richard Branson will be launching a new cruise line soon which boasts "over 20 eating and drinking venues." If only. This cruise included free laundry. My black t-shirt was returned covered in blonde hairs. (The hairs might be mine, but didn't the shirt get laundered?) Hubby sent his sport coat to be pressed. It came back. When he finally opened the plastic and put the jacket on, the back was all wrinkled. Looked as if they didn't press it. Embarassing to wear it that way, it was that bad. The dress code needs to be enforced. OMG, the number of men (both young and way old enough to know better) who wore ballcaps while sitting at a dinner table was totally unacceptable on this most recent cruise. Enforce "country club casual" at Tea. Include a reminder in brochures that men should not wear hats at tables. (How sad is that that we're no longer taught etiquette?) We've said this for awhile. Either enforce "country club casual" or give it up. Oceania has jumped on the "no straws" kick. I went ashore, hitched a ride to a mercado and bought my own box of straws. I get the problem with plastic straws; so, use paper straws. One simply cannot drink from a Hurricane glass without a straw. I think enough people complained, they started providing straws after a few days, at least for drinks in Hurricane glasses. Common sense, folks. If you try to finish a drink that is in a Hurricane glass, and you don't have a straw, the drink is going to end up all over the drinker! To summarize: The food is excellent, the service very good. (Not perfect, but very good.) I like Oceania but next cruise will have to be on a line with a more diverse clientele; not so many old people. It's both depressing and frustrating. The apparent lack of accountability with the Canyon Ranch Spa is an issue for me. If they are hosting newbies, prices for services provided by newbies should reflect the newbie's lack of experience. Make them "specials." Be honest; be ethical. But why would they? Unlike most businesses, Canyon Ranch Spa-at-Sea has been guaranteed survivability. Bars need to be freed up so passengers can use the bars for drinking! Oceania definitely needs to do a better job of describing the transportation used by the Shore Excursion companies. After all, they cater to an older clientele, so this is much more critical than it is with cruise lines that have a younger clientele. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
WE decided to go for a cruise over Christmas and New Years. We told our travel agent to book Viking out of Miami. It was sold out so our agent suggested we try Oceania, as they were comparable. The are not. We were disappointed in most ... Read More
WE decided to go for a cruise over Christmas and New Years. We told our travel agent to book Viking out of Miami. It was sold out so our agent suggested we try Oceania, as they were comparable. The are not. We were disappointed in most aspects of the cruise with exception to the crew. They were exceptional. The spa was great also. All other aspects where inferior. The entertainment was poor. they had a piano player who was good. A guitar player not so great, a comedian who was not funny. I think the single biggest disappointment was the food. As they are known for their food we had great expectations. We ate in all the venues on the ship and were not impressed. The disembarkation was late due to medical emergencies and was disorganized.it was almost 3 hours after our arrival in Miami before we got off the ship. We will not travel on Oceania again. Read Less
Riviera Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.5
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 3.5 3.2
Public Rooms 4.5 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 2.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.3
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.8

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