This was an excellent cruise with many positives and very few negatives. It was in high demand and overbooked. We were astonished to hear the offers some people received to cancel and rebook a future cruise.
We had a concierge level stateroom and although it was small, it was very clean and comfortable with a balcony. The housekeeping staff is a very hard-working group of people and they made sure we always had what we needed. The condition of the ship is excellent although we did notice a couple of spots that needed a little repair.
The entertainment greatly exceeded our expectations. Last time we were on the Regatta in 2008 there wasn't much in the way of entertainment after dinner. There was the orchestra and one cabaret-style singer as I recall. Now there is still the talented orchestra in addition to a very entertaining and talented young group of 6 singers and dancers. They played to standing-room-only crowds. On their off-nights there was other entertainment. Gran Volta are 2 young Russian women who gave energizing and modern violin and cello performances. Very entertaining. The piano player, Stephen Kane, was also excellent.
During the cruise is was announced that the Port of Acapulco was cancelled because of recent violence so they added Zihuanatnejo, Mexico. We were slightly relieved about that. With only a couple of days notice, Oceania was able to put some shore excursions in place. This is a port that gets very few cruise ships and it was the first time the Regatta had been there. We took Oceania's shore excursions in every port except Key West. They were okay, but quite expensive. I have to admit that I was growing weary of being on a 40-passenger bus where the loading and unloading process is painfully slow. It made us reconsider how we're going to tour ports in the future.
The food, of course, was outstanding. The presentation, quality and taste was truly wonderful. Some of the more memorable meals for me included the sea bass wrapped in a banana leaf with jasmine rice in the GDR and the dover sole in Toscana. The choices of olive oil in Toscana was amazing. I thought that Polo Grill didn't quite meet the same high standards. The surf and turf was the one "miss" that I experienced. The lobster was good but the steak wasn't. I ordered it medium well, which should have a little pink in the center. Instead there was no pink and it was dry. So, one not-so-great meal and many great meals. Polo Grill made up for it on a later night when my husband ordered rib-eye and it was very good. We bought the 7 bottle wine package, a variety of red and white, and each bottle was excellent.
I have read on this board that the officers of Oceania do not make many appearances. I have to disagree. The Captain was visible and has a wonderful sense of humor. One day he and the General Manager did a chat with the Cruise Director in the Lounge where they talked about their careers and then did a Q & A session. Very interesting. Another day there was an Officer's Challenge where the passengers had a friendly competition over table tennis, golf putting, etc. Everyone had a lot of fun.
Our cruise director was satisfactory. We heard he was new to Oceania. We felt like he was just going through the motions and was not in his element. I think he'll improve over time.
Disembarkation in San Francisco was easy. Definitely an advantage of being on a smaller ship.
All in all, this was a wonderful cruise with many great memories.
Clean and comfortable. Bathroom is quite small but it was adequate.
Leisurely afternoon in Miami on our own.
Our first time in Key West. Walked around town on our own and toured the light house.
Good view of the city from the top of the monastery.
The guide and river boat driver were very good at pointing out the crocodiles and other animals.View All 35 Mangrove River Tour Reviews
90 minute drive to Colonial village of Antigua. Very pleasant and cool because of the elevation. The jade museum is very interesting.
Average tour. Nothing really stands out, although it was organized with very little notice due to Acapulco being cancelled.View All 3 City Tour Reviews
Boat ride to The Arch was very good, then a bus to San Jose del Cabo. Stopped at a resort with a beautiful view of the harbor. Loading and unloading the huge bus was extremely slow. It was frustrating because we only had a half day in Cabo and it seemed like so much time was wasted with the bus-loading process.View All 26 San Jose del Cabo Reviews
Did not spend time in San Francisco after the cruise.