We will cruise with Oceania Again!: Riviera Cruise Review by klscaz

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We will cruise with Oceania Again!

Sail Date: March 2014
Destination: Southern Caribbean
Embarkation: Miami

Well done. This is our 14th cruise so we knew what to expect (first with Oceania). We were on the ship very early—about 11:45. We couldn’t get into our room until about 2:45. One suitcase arrived before the safety drill and one shortly thereafter


We were in a B3, 7114 with the extended balcony. It was nice but other than the bathroom which was very nice, the cabin was similar to the mass market lines. The bed was comfortable. We did not care for the position of the closet (right alongside the bed). It was hard to get to everything. If you can afford it, a PH is the way to go! The closet is awesome.We enjoyed having cold water and sodas in the fridge.

We did not meet our cabin steward until the second day. I asked for a lounger but did not get one. He made it seem like it was my fault for not hunting him down on day one. Otherwise, he and his assistant did a fine job.


Loved the corned beef More Rueben from the Waves Grill. Tried it on day one and had it for lunch two more times! The Roman burger was good too. We also liked their chocolate milkshake. I didn’t care for the lunch buffet in the Terrace Café very much but my husband always found something. We had dinner twice at the buffet and I really enjoyed the filet and strip steak with a side of béarnaise sauce—yum. I didn’t care for the grilled lobster tails. I prefer mine steamed.

Jacques and Red Ginger were our favorite restaurants. Polo was our least favorite—maybe I made some bad choices. The steak was fine but my clam chowder and Waldorf salad where both kind of bland. We didn’t really give Toscana a fair chance. We came back from an excursion and were starving so we ordered room service (good food) fairly late in the afternoon on the day that we ate at Toscana.

We were lucky enough to get a second reservation at Jacques and Red Ginger. Some of our favorite things; Pot of Chocolate, prime rib, and Dover Sole in Jacques; Sea Bass, Fried Calamari, Beef Carpaccio, tuna appetizer and Ginger cake in Red Ginger. Onion soup was delicious in Jacques and Polo.

We tried the Exploration menu in LaReserve and did not enjoy the food but we had great company so it was a nice evening. The wine pairings featured too many white choices. There was one excellent burgundy that we liked very much. I wouldn't book LaReserve again.

I have to say that the desserts were awesome. We tried to get the recipe for the chocolate safari cake but no luck. We also enjoyed the cooking demonstration in the theater and the Italian Table culinary class. We have made the Pasta Michelangelo at home.

The food in the Grand Dining Room was hit or miss for me. The service in all of the venues was excellent. I have nothing but good things to say about the staff. Didn’t care for the afternoon tea. The scones were not as good as on Princess.

On-Board Activities

We are couch potatoes and don’t require much in the way of entertainment on sea days. I like to read on the balcony and my husband likes to catch up on the latest movies on TV. We spent one sea day at the pool. We also did a wine tasting and played mini golf.

On the first sea day, we attended a Meet and Greet for our Roll Call. Oceania did not support it all. We were booted out of the venue when the Acupuncture class started.

I did a bit of damage in the boutique; some new perfume and a few Fire CZ rings.

Many people have complained about not being able to find a server to bring them a drink, we had not trouble getting a drink the few times that we wanted to order one. We did bring on our own wine and enjoyed that immensely!

We attended 3 shows in the evening and I thought they were on par with other cruise lines. The casino is tiny and some of the machines seem really old which can’t be since the ship is only 2 years old. But, I did win $154.00! We did not listen to any of the acts playing in the bar.

We met more people on this cruise than on our past cruises. My husband and I still work for a living and we were in the minority. Just about everyone we met was retired. Maybe that is why they were all so friendly! Or, it could be the fact that the size of the ship means that you run into the same people more often.

We used the laundry room on one occasion. It was nice to have. Oceania provides a TV, bottled water and detergent. The irons are free. You pay $2.00 each for the washer and dryer.

Shore Excursions: Only took one Oceania excursion to Jost Van Dyke. It was well run and the price was fair; we enjoyed it. All other excursions were private.


We booked Quality Limo Service in advance and were waiting on the curb at the appointed time. The driver called to say that he was twenty minutes away due to traffic. Really? All of the other limo services were there on time. The reason we booked a private car was because we had a very early flight back home: 11:21 AM. We ended up taking a Quality van instead and they did give us a $60 credit but it was stress that I did not need at the end of our vacation. There was a wonderful gentleman working for the Miami Port Authority who did a great job of finding a van that would leave right away for Fort Lauderdale.

Oceania did a fine job of sorting the luggage and having it available to us in the terminal. It was very crowded exiting the ship. Some passengers have mobility issues that slow down the process. Hopefully, I will be one of those folks someday—slowing down but still able to enjoy cruising! We booked our next cruise while onboard for June 2015, London, Ireland, Scotland. Less

Published 04/24/14

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