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Riviera Cruise Review
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
691 Reviews

Riviera is Nice Ship But is Overpriced

Riviera Cruise Review by texaslover

13 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Apr 2017
  • Destination: Transatlantic
  • Cabin Type: Concierge Level

My husband and I have cruised many, many times on different cruise lines. This was our first Oceania cruise and chose this particular cruise because the Riviera has a good reputation and this 17 Day cruise spent 3 days in Israel - in addition to a number of Greek Islands and a few Italy ports. Oceania claims to have the best food at sea - and I tend to agree with that. Oceania also claims to have great service. Usually, the service is good but it lacks in a number of ways, including Cabin Steward service can be spotty. The Grand Dining Room service was so slow and poor that we never went back after our first experience there. We ate in the Terrace Café for lunch and dinner most of the time and the food there was mostly the same menu as the Grand Dining Room and you can get in and out much more quickly. Jacques Restaurant was good - both food and service. Tuscana (Italian) was my absolute favorite. The food and service were unbelievable and in my opinion could not be improved upon. Red Ginger was a disappointment - not because of the service which was very good, but because of the menu. Of course, Asian food is not my favorite but my husband really wanted to go and even he was disappointed that the items you would expect to be on the menu were missing. Polo Grill (Steakhouse) was definitely the most disappointing. The service was poor and the 20 oz. Porterhouse Steak my husband had was so tough and hard to eat that he could only swallow a small portion of the steak. He had really expected that experience to be exemplary but it was the worst of all.

Unfortunately, the Reception Desk will tell you anything just to get you to "go on". Also, the Shore Excursions Department would tell us that we would be anchored in a particular area and then it would turn out to be a different place which would be must more inconvenient and harder to get to the desired areas - and more time consuming. If you do not take the Ship's own Shore Excursions, you are definitely at a disadvantage each day. Oceania says they provide transportation into "town" most of the time if they do not dock near the town. On this cruise, Oceania did not provide such complimentary transportation in areas needed. We had a Concierge Veranda and with the amount of money we invested in this cruise, we can honestly say it was tremendously over priced. We would much more recommend either Holland America or Celebrity (especially Celebrity if you are a "foodie") and take several cruises for the price of this one on Oceania. Yes, the food was good but not worth that many more thousands of dollars than say either Holland America or Celebrity. The bed was extremely comfortable - probably the most comfortable of any hotel, including the very premium hotels. Dr. Wulf, the Enrichment Speaker was very good and informative as well as interesting.

texaslover's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Concierge Level

Bed was very comfortable. With encouragement, cabin service was good. Nice bathrooom with marble floor, walls, countertop and separate shower and tub. Cabins appear to be a little larger on Riviera than on other cruise lines. Carpet and furniture in fairly good condition. WiFi was extremely slow except during the few hours daily when most passengers were off the ship.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews


Good excursion; informative guide.

View All 6 Paphos Reviews

Had been to Mykonos before so we just walked around.

Dingli Cliffs

Good views.

View All 5 Dingli Cliffs Reviews
Rabat Walking Tour

Good Guide; saw St. Paul's Catacombs, Cathedrals, etc. Would recommend this tour.

View All 4 Rabat Walking Tour Reviews
Taormina (Messina)

Took public bus from Naxos to Taormina and back. Very slow because of traffic and very scenic.


Had already been here before so we just walked around Sorrento.

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