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Insignia Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
199 reviews
19 Awards

They called it Black Sea Treasures, but many of the jewels were fakes

Review for Insignia to Europe - Black Sea
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2-5 Cruises • Age 60s

Rating by category

Public Rooms

Additional details

Sail Date: May 2014

We selected this cruise for two reasons; to celebrate our 25th anniversary and because of the originally scheduled itinerary. Unfortunately situations in Ukraine forced the cancellation of the ports of Yalta, Sevastapol and Odessa. I am not stupid. I know this is not the fault of Oceania and this is something they had to do. The big issue was their communications on the situation (and lack thereof), their suspicious timing on cancelling these ports after the cancellation period had passed, even though they cancelled these ports on later cruises much earlier, their lack of any attempt to compensate for these changes, and their lack of imagination in revising the itinerary. Many cruisers I spoke with had experiences with other cruise lines which handled situations in much better ways, such as waiving cancellation penalties, onboard credits, free internet, future cruise discounts or applying the money to future cruises. We were offered nothing.

The ship had apparently just emerged from dry dock and refurbishment. This was noticeable in the common areas, but in the cabin we had, there were dents in the doors, scuff marks on the hallways, and scratches in the walls, the railing in our room had faded varnish (however this was redone during a day ashore). Not terrible but pretty off putting for what is marketed as a luxury cruise experience. I found the bed way too soft. The cabin temperature wasn't very comfortable most of the time, but we never really got a good answer in response to our complaints.

The food was generally OK. The quality of steaks was not really that good, IMHO. They lacked seasoning in a lot of dishes. I don't know if that was to cater to older and duller palates or what. The salads were especially disappointing. They offered a Caesars salad, but the dressing was bland, and barely passable for calling itself a Caesars salad. Hardly a shred of parmesan cheese. But they were free with the anchovies. Apparently throwing anchovies on a pile of lettuce makes it a Caesars salad. In the specialty restaurants they offer 'table side preparation of Caesars salad". What a joke. They wheeled out a cart with lettuce, anchovies, some meager and often stale croutons, and bunch of anchovies, and a previously prepared container of the same bland dressing you get at the buffet and main dining room. The exception to this was the food in Toscano which was superb. Polo Grill didn't compare to most of the finer steak houses we dine at here in Denver.

Cabin Review

Selected the cabin for the view during the cruise through the Darandells and Bosporus straits. This was excellent for that purpose. We enjoyed watching the activity of arriving and departing from the docks at each port.Some noise from the Insiginia main showroom 2 decks below while the band played.Wind from the front was not that bad when underway. Motion not that bad.

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