This was our 13th cruise and thankfully proved to be not that unlucky. We had sailed on the sister ship, Marina, on a transatlantic the previous year so knew what to expect regarding the layout of the ship and the facilities. Like last time we booked a concierge stateroom, this time on deck 9, which came with a few added extras. We flew from Glasgow via Heathrow to Miami with BA on the large A380 the day before and had a trouble free flight. Meals on board were better than expected as was the room to stretch out. In flight entertainment was about average but no where near the likes of Emirates. I think the main bonus was that our luggage arrived safely because several fellow passengers were not so lucky and were still waiting on their's several days into the cruise. We had an overnight in the Marriott at Biscayne Bay, near to the cruise terminal. Large clean room with comfortable bed. Not much else around the area though but fine for 1 night. Got a groupon deal before we left for the power boat ride that leaves next to the hotel for a 30 min ride around the bay. Enjoyable but not worth the full cost. The breakfast was expensive so went to the mall next door and found a deli which sold just about everything, including my wife's favourite wine, so happy wife!! Now, as many of you will know, Oceania do a staggered embarkation according to the class of accommodation,status etc. which on our previous cruise in Manhattan went extremely well. However a few days before leaving we all got an email letting us know that the ship was being inspected by the Coastguard in the morning. Unfortunately the letter was wrongly worded and gave the impression everyone had to arrive at a certain time. Needless to say this caused mayhem and, without labouring the point, was not Oceania's finest hour. {or in this case several hours!}. Anyway, once onboard, the ship was immaculate. I really love this size of ship compared to the large floating tower blocks that are becoming the norm. The fixtures and fittings are high end and the ship oozes class! We ate in the Grand dining room on 6 occasions and once each in the 4 speciality restaurants. My favourite was Polo Grill because they got my filet mignon just the way I like it. My wife preferred Red Ginger, but to be honest all the dining was very good and no complaints with the quality of the food. We did not do any Oceania shore excursions as, apart from the excessive price, we didn’t see many we liked. We booked with local tour operators in most and did car hire in St Barts. The entertainment on the ship was mixed. The string quartet were excellent musicians but the production shows were only average at best. The comedian lost her way on several occasions and had many people up and leave I believe principally because too much of her reference material made no sense to non American’s. The daily entertainment programme was fair but the best part was the Artists Loft which my wife loved from our time on the Marina and made full use of again. Gave me time to catch up with some reading and chill! Stateroom was excellent with plenty of storage space and a separate bath and shower. My wife really enjoys a bath and with the premium salts provided it was hard to get her back out in time for dinner. The bed is the best ever and we are seriously thinking of buying it for home as have never slept so well! Due to the sea swells we never made it to the Dominican Republic but we enjoyed our time at the other ports of call. Had an easy disembarkation and then 2 nights at Miami Beach, which was way better than expected, to relax before the overnight flight home to winter! Overall, had a very good cruise experience and will be booking with Oceania again in the future.

Great ship with a few minor issues.

Riviera Cruise Review by TRUEBLUE66

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2017
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Concierge Level
This was our 13th cruise and thankfully proved to be not that unlucky.

We had sailed on the sister ship, Marina, on a transatlantic the previous year so knew what to expect regarding the layout of the ship and the facilities. Like last time we booked a concierge stateroom, this time on deck 9, which came with a few added extras.

We flew from Glasgow via Heathrow to Miami with BA on the large A380 the day before and had a trouble free flight. Meals on board were better than expected as was the room to stretch out. In flight entertainment was about average but no where near the likes of Emirates. I think the main bonus was that our luggage arrived safely because several fellow passengers were not so lucky and were still waiting on their's several days into the cruise.

We had an overnight in the Marriott at Biscayne Bay, near to the cruise terminal. Large clean room with comfortable bed. Not much else around the area though but fine for 1 night. Got a groupon deal before we left for the power boat ride that leaves next to the hotel for a 30 min ride around the bay. Enjoyable but not worth the full cost.

The breakfast was expensive so went to the mall next door and found a deli which sold just about everything, including my wife's favourite wine, so happy wife!!

Now, as many of you will know, Oceania do a staggered embarkation according to the class of accommodation,status etc. which on our previous cruise in Manhattan went extremely well. However a few days before leaving we all got an email letting us know that the ship was being inspected by the Coastguard in the morning. Unfortunately the letter was wrongly worded and gave the impression everyone had to arrive at a certain time. Needless to say this caused mayhem and, without labouring the point, was not Oceania's finest hour. {or in this case several hours!}.

Anyway, once onboard, the ship was immaculate. I really love this size of ship compared to the large floating tower blocks that are becoming the norm. The fixtures and fittings are high end and the ship oozes class!

We ate in the Grand dining room on 6 occasions and once each in the 4 speciality restaurants. My favourite was Polo Grill because they got my filet mignon just the way I like it. My wife preferred Red Ginger, but to be honest all the dining was very good and no complaints with the quality of the food.

We did not do any Oceania shore excursions as, apart from the excessive price, we didn’t see many we liked. We booked with local tour operators in most and did car hire in St Barts.

The entertainment on the ship was mixed. The string quartet were excellent musicians but the production shows were only average at best. The comedian lost her way on several occasions and had many people up and leave I believe principally because too much of her reference material made no sense to non American’s.

The daily entertainment programme was fair but the best part was the Artists Loft which my wife loved from our time on the Marina and made full use of again. Gave me time to catch up with some reading and chill!

Stateroom was excellent with plenty of storage space and a separate bath and shower. My wife really enjoys a bath and with the premium salts provided it was hard to get her back out in time for dinner.

The bed is the best ever and we are seriously thinking of buying it for home as have never slept so well!

Due to the sea swells we never made it to the Dominican Republic but we enjoyed our time at the other ports of call.

Had an easy disembarkation and then 2 nights at Miami Beach, which was way better than expected, to relax before the overnight flight home to winter!

Overall, had a very good cruise experience and will be booking with Oceania again in the future.
TRUEBLUE66’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Concierge Level
Cabin A3 9092
High end fixtures and fittings with plenty of storage space. Loved the separate bath and shower in the marble bathroom. Bed the best at sea, and possibly land!
Located port side mid-aft and handy for either set of stairs/lifts. Concierge lounge a short walk away with computers,snacks and comfy chairs.
Deck 9 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Catamaran Sail
    Full day snorkelling and eco tour with a local company we had been with in January. Different tour this time but well run. Sea was a bit rough and got very wet just sitting in the boat! Very enjoyable.
    View All 103 Catamaran Sail Reviews
  • Miami
    Stayed in Miami Beach area after cruise at a beach hotel and loved the new boardwalk and clean sandy beach.
    Art deco area very interesting and the whole place comes alive at night!
    View All 2,451 Miami Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Miami Cruise Port Review
  • St. Barts
    Hired a car in advance and picked it up from the Airport. Drove to a coastal path we had seen on the map and walked for a while until we got to a secluded beach. Too rough to swim as myself and another guy found out when we were swept off our feet and onto the rocks! Bruises aside, was a good trip and found lots of wildlife including a tortoise!
    Drove around the rest of the Island and could see the repair work going on after the hurricane damage. Not much to see in the main town except the short walk to shell beach.
    View All 174 St. Barts Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's St. Barts Cruise Port Review
  • Island tour
    Half day tour to some of the main attractions in a luxury mini bus with 1 other couple from a different ship. Really enjoyable, if fast moving, and ended with 2 hours on a private beach on the other side of the Island. Great weather!
    View All 272 Island tour Reviews
  • Island Tour
    Like several others from the ship we booked ahead and did this popular and fast moving Island tour that covered the main sights as well as a beach break on the sands between the pitons. Fun and informative driver/guide and kept dry for us until the return journey when the heavens opened. Everyone paddled back to the ship!
    View All 266 Island Tour Reviews