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SUMMARY:First Oceania cruise. Highly rec' by travel agent. Chosen because of itinerary ((NY, Boston,R.I, Maine,Halifax and Bermuda) and size (640 passengers). Smaller ratio of crew to passengers compared to other lines allowed superior and speedier service. Smaller ship provides quicker access to destinations on board and much less "how do I get to... now" problems. And we were certainty not disappointed at missing the huge crowds and long lines at the embarkation pier. Superb signage on board and never more than a 20 second wait for elevator.(All comments are comparisons to a dozen other cruises take on larger cruise lines and ships). PACKAGE: Included were dinner in two specialty restaurants, three excursions, soft drinks, pre-paid gratuities and internet package. Free alcoholic drinks offered first nite for all on sail-away. Specialty dinner reservation reminders were placed on cabin door preceding eve. DINING: Buffet was grander than expected; lobster tail available each nite we ate there, plus many, many choices, some of which we could not pronounce:-), smoked salmon each breakfast. Most dishes displayed making choice easier, desserts galore and a grand room service menu.In addition, there was never any large crowd waiting for their "assigned seating time" in the main dining room. AMBIANCE: Classic European style, rich wood carpentry and deep carpeting with "old world" feel. Impressionistic and Cubist painting hung in stairwells (no art auctions missed ).On this cruise only 16 children with 100 guests 70 & older. No demographic war here. ENTERTAINMENT: Smaller ship does not allow for large Broadway-type shows/ scenery. Talent, however, compensated with usual singers, dancers and comedians. There is a single show each evening. Shows not repeated--and no "talent" contests or "marriage games. We adored the string quartet that played not only classical but, if you can imagine it, pop songs as well (though a bit "odd" to hear HELLO DOLLY on cello, viola and violins -:) ). SERVICE: As it should be on all cruise lines, exceptional but seemed more so here. Noted our cabin stewardess and helper responsible for 28! cabins, but never missed a beat or a need for us. Cruise director always wore a suit, demeanor and style targeted over 50 age demographic.Wait staff did their job efficiently. EXCURSIONS:These are so much a matter of personal choice. With five ports we chose three and were not disappointed. POOL: Each lounge had a deep, soft cushion with a towel covering plus an additional rolled up towel for personal use. Nice touch. the pool is small, but then, so is the passenger size. VALUE: In comparing the prices of what would be comparable for our package, cabin and choices on another cruise line (for 10 nite Caribbean cruise), Oceania is 30-40% more. The question is to balance the intimacy, demographics, service, dining and other benefits provided vs a much larger and more crowded ship with younger clientele. In the end, the trade was definitely worth it for us at this time.

Met expectations, exceeded some

Insignia Cruise Review by Normlin

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Trip Details
SUMMARY:First Oceania cruise. Highly rec' by travel agent. Chosen because of itinerary ((NY, Boston,R.I, Maine,Halifax and Bermuda) and size (640 passengers). Smaller ratio of crew to passengers compared to other lines allowed superior and speedier service. Smaller ship provides quicker access to destinations on board and much less "how do I get to... now" problems. And we were certainty not disappointed at missing the huge crowds and long lines at the embarkation pier. Superb signage on board and never more than a 20 second wait for elevator.(All comments are comparisons to a dozen other cruises take on larger cruise lines and ships).

PACKAGE: Included were dinner in two specialty restaurants, three excursions, soft drinks, pre-paid gratuities and internet package. Free alcoholic drinks offered first nite for all on sail-away. Specialty dinner reservation reminders were placed on cabin door preceding eve.

DINING: Buffet was grander than expected; lobster tail available each nite we ate there, plus many, many choices, some of which we could not pronounce:-), smoked salmon each breakfast. Most dishes displayed making choice easier, desserts galore and a grand room service menu.In addition, there was never any large crowd waiting for their "assigned seating time" in the main dining room.

AMBIANCE: Classic European style, rich wood carpentry and deep carpeting with "old world" feel. Impressionistic and Cubist painting hung in stairwells (no art auctions missed ).On this cruise only 16 children with 100 guests 70 & older. No demographic war here.

ENTERTAINMENT: Smaller ship does not allow for large Broadway-type shows/ scenery. Talent, however, compensated with usual singers, dancers and comedians. There is a single show each evening. Shows not repeated--and no "talent" contests or "marriage games. We adored the string quartet that played not only classical but, if you can imagine it, pop songs as well (though a bit "odd" to hear HELLO DOLLY on cello, viola and violins -:) ).

SERVICE: As it should be on all cruise lines, exceptional but seemed more so here. Noted our cabin stewardess and helper responsible for 28! cabins, but never missed a beat or a need for us. Cruise director always wore a suit, demeanor and style targeted over 50 age demographic.Wait staff did their job efficiently.

EXCURSIONS:These are so much a matter of personal choice. With five ports we chose three and were not disappointed.

POOL: Each lounge had a deep, soft cushion with a towel covering plus an additional rolled up towel for personal use. Nice touch. the pool is small, but then, so is the passenger size.

VALUE: In comparing the prices of what would be comparable for our package, cabin and choices on another cruise line (for 10 nite Caribbean cruise), Oceania is 30-40% more. The question is to balance the intimacy, demographics, service, dining and other benefits provided vs a much larger and more crowded ship with younger clientele. In the end, the trade was definitely worth it for us at this time.
Normlin’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience

Cabin Review

Deluxe Ocean View
Cabin C1 4018
-Without request, we were assigned an adjoining cabin resulting in a minor problem.
-Appreciated small touches such as nite lite makeup mirror,hair dryer and NO towel
animals each nite.
-Very comfortable bed and pillows, slippers provided.
-Appreciated phone call preceding room service knock on door.
-Room size adequate and PLENTY of storage space.
-We did not feel the ship or cabin appeared "dated" as some reviews indicated. It was
a nice change from the bright and glitzy previous ships
-And...you could check out and watch your choice of over 300 DVDs
Deck 7 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins