We also had the misfortune to be on the Regatta for 21days from Lima to Buenos Aires. I totally agree with burdock's review but doubt that I will be as kind and forgiving to Oceania and how this GI outbreak was handled.
First...we were never informed that the "problem" had been identified and was indeed the Norovirus...it was always named a generic " G.I. distress ". The first few days out of Lima were fine and then the announcements began daily about the need to wash ones hands. As the contagion spread the daily reminders became insistent and often but.. WHY were numerous vectors left untouched ? For example... on the tables the salt, pepper, creamer remained for days, menus reused, the same pen used by many to sign receipts It took them days to even get around to closing the self laundry room and lock the library books.They merely put out more ETOH hand dispensers and helpers were stationed at the entrance to the restaurants to remind you to use them.
Once the morning sick call reached 2-3% of the ships census, which was about the 7th day of the outbreak, they now had to report it to the CDC and shifted into a higher level of alert and sanitation. The entire staff now had extra duties of wiping down handrails ,elevator buttons, cloth sofas etc with a mild disinfectant .Late at night when all asleep, they would walk down the hallways with a " germ killing fogger " The dining tables had the salt and pepper removed but sadly the pitcher of cream vector remained for days.
I could give dozens of other TOO LITTLE TOO LATE examples of poor vector control during the progress of this outbreak. IF this was a Norwalk virus that plagued the Regatta...why was just a ineffective ethyl alcohol hand sanitizer used ? Bleach and strong soap on ALL surfaces kills the long living virus not yelling at passengers to wash their hands and providing a weak hand rinse. I knew we were fighting a losing battle when I happened by the med office one morning and saw 4 waiters / food handlers sitting in the hallway waiting to see the Doc.
Enough about the GI problems, lets move into other observations. I agree, the itinerary on the west coast was dismal and it seems to me only selected to force the passengers to either overpay for the Oceania excursions or wander around the squalor of post earthquake villages on their own..
We loved the demographics of our fellow passengers... well traveled, fitful 60-70 yo with very few slow walkers. Never were we troubled with obnoxious drunks or sharp elbows at the feeding trough and never had to wait for a table for 2 at the GDR. The casual dinner attire was welcomed...we never were pestered to have photos taken or look at gaudy jewelry. We went to a couple evening shows and enjoyed the college level productions. Great enrichment lectures on South America were given by Dr. ?, a retired dentist who's name fails me.
Overall we found the food good and varied but never great...think Applebees or Olive Garden with a few stellar dishes like Miso Wrapped Seabass. I found many dishes over salted and most dishes were served at a tepid temperature since they took a long, slow journey from kitchen.
The service was slow and most disappointing but we understood. If many of the staff had to spend hours disinfecting surfaces and others were quarantined with illness, then bringing me a latte was secondary. Our room steward Svetlana was excellent and kept me well supplied with Evian to counterbalance all the salty food and our room spotless.
I was especially troubled with our cruise being shadowed with the Norwegian Sun....at many ports we would arrive at about the same time and overcrowding of the sites prevailed. The ships massive 2,500 passengers would somehow become part of our so called more personal 550 passenger experience many times....although they paid thousands less for their cruise. It was explained to me as Synergy and a cost savings for Oceania. It seems in Sept. 2014 Norwegian bought both Oceania and Regent and is now cutting costs and buffing their bottom line.
In summary, without the GI outbreak, this might have been a nice cruise with many welcomed features in the ambience. We only wished that we had tried Oceania before the buyout and especially before a GI distress problem was poorly managed by the new owners.
If you are prone to seasickness then this is probably one of the best cabins to pick. It is center ship and low floor level. The rock and rolling is minimal here. If you have hearing difficulties this is again your cabin...it will work to your advantage.
Now look at the location of this cabin.....next to the reception area and the dreaded exit door to the gangway. Every port that had a gangway used this door...banging would begin getting the ramp ready in early morn...no sleeping for you. It was most noisy all day until the exit door was closed and we sailed away.
Let the buyer beware...it is a noisy room and the bathroom size is worse than you could ever imagine.