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

Standards have slipped

Riviera Cruise Review by vjb

1 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Nov 2018
  • Destination: Transatlantic
  • Cabin Type: Verandah Stateroom

This was our 7th cruise with Oceania. They are still an excellent cruise line but we feel that the service and overall cruise experience is not as good as we have previously experienced.

It was very nice to be remembered by so many of the crew when we were on board. The general manager - Dominic has been on other cruises that we've been on and he remembered us.

We found the food in the speciality restaurants to be very good and actually truly memorable. The hostess in the Red Ginger is really exceptional and offered to let us taste items that we had not ordered so we would know about other options for future evenings. We also enjoyed dining at the Terrace Cafe in the evening and even although it is a buffet we found the service to be very good. The dining venue that really needs a great deal of work is the main dining room. I had made a comment about the poor service in the main dining room on my mid cruise comment card and although the staff does try very hard the service is very slow. One evening we were at the table almost 3 hours and sat with dirty dishes from our entrees in front of us for 20 minutes. 2 people left before dessert because they had other plans for the evening. The service in the specialty restaurants is far better and you can finish a nice 4 or 5 course meal in less than 2 hours without feeling rushed.

The cabin stewards were also very slow. I don't know whether Oceania has cut back on the staff but our cabin was usually not serviced until close to lunch time. One evening when we had a late dinner and did not leave our cabin until 8:00 we saw our cabin steward in the hall and she said that she had left the daily currents in our mail slot. When we returned to our cabin after dinner, the bed had not been turned down and the cabin had not been serviced. It seems like the stewards have a set schedule. Other cruises that we've been on with Oceania the cabin was always serviced by 10:00 or 10:30.

The cruise director was probably one of the best that I've had. He was very pro-active and sociable. You always saw him at the end of each show or productions and he would ask how the cruise was going. When I filled out the mid cruise comment card I mentioned that it would be nice to have movies in the main show room during days at sea. He called me back saying that he was trying to free up time in the lounge for movies and sure enough the next day and for the rest of the cruise there was usually a movie in the show lounge during days at sea.

The entertainment was okay. There was a good trumpet player - Nicole Sassi. I didn't care for the singer or comedian that they had. A couple of the production shows they had were very good a couple were mediocre.

We enjoyed the tea in the afternoon. This is a truly marvelous treat sitting in the Horizons Lounge having wonderful sandwiches, scones and clotted cream and the most wonderful eclairs served by white gloved service staff.

We missed a couple of ports in the Canary Islands because of hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean. It would have been nice if the captain was able to provide at least 1 port to make up for those missed. 8 days at sea is really a long time. I also don't understand why there is no refund for port fees on the missed ports. Other cruise lines have refunded us the port fees when we have had to bypass a port.

The connection for internet on board was very poor and we were constantly losing the signal.

Oceania is a terrific cruise line be we have really noticed the attention to details and the standards for service seem to have slipped.

vjb's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
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Cabin Review

Verandah Stateroom
Cabin B3 7007

The cabin was great. We enjoyed the large verandah and lying on the lounge chairs.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews


We've been to Barcelona before so we just took a taxi from the airport to the ship. Next time we'll see what other options are avaiable for getting to the ship as we were charged 48 euro for a very short taxi ride


We did Alicante on our own. We got a map from the information desk on board ship and walked and explored on our own. We did everything that was on the ship's tour including the castle and we probably spent 8 EU. Their is a reduced fee for the castle if you're a senior but even without the discount it is very reasonable

San Juan

We've been to Puerto Rico before. Walked into the old town


We have a local who is a very good friend so we spent the day with her.

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