Riviera Review

Lack of attention to detail

Review for the Baltic Sea Cruise on Riviera
10+ Cruises • Age 60s

Rating by category

Value for Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: Aug 2023
Cabin: Penthouse Suite

Our Cruise was disappointing at best. Let me first say that certain staff were excellent, our cabin staff, Tony, the bartender in Martinis, Barbara in Barista's, all great. . Others seemed undertrained. A server for breakfast service should know what a mimosa is. Tables should be cleared regularly, not when diners are standing around searching for a table. We usually just picked a dirty table and asked someone to reset it. Beverage servers in Waves should offer drinks before you are done eating, not after. Or when you simply go up to the beverage station and ask for one yourself. Pool Bar bartenders should know that sour mix does not go in a mojito. The list goes on and on and on. They have gone cheap in many ways. Meat quality was not good. My Porterhouse in Polo Grill was mostly gristle. Meat in the buffet was average at best. The grand dining room was simply inedible, Other than Polo Grill, the specialty restaurants are good, not great. For the record, we sailed on Marina last year. Things were just better across the board. Heck, they even down graded the espresso beans in Baristas. It was Illy last year on Marina. Now it was some stuff that came in a purple bag. They advertise a pillow menu in all suites. When I asked for one, I was told that was for larger suites. Wow, so a Penthouse Suite isn't big enough to get a firmer pillow? (our maid did sneak us one later on). The cushions for our veranda chairs were not put out unless we did it ourselves. Just so many little things just weren't what I would expect for a luxury cruise in a penthouse suite. They sent out a note that we could pick up our passports between 4:30 and 6:30. Then announced at 5:15 that they had to picked up by 5:30. This resulted in a rush and long lines. We double checked the notice, and it clearly said 6;30, so we went down at 6:15. Again, lack of attention to detail. Heck, even our on board survey looked like it was folded by a 4 year old.

The average age is now over mid 70's . We are 56 and 62. We were dramatically younger than most of the passengers. We had a couple in their early 70's come sit with us saying how nice it was to find some younger people. I haven't considered myself young in years. It's not just the age, many are barely ambulatory. Walkers, canes, and wheelchairs are abundant. I'm not trying to be mean. It just affects everything from getting on and off buses, elevators or just walking down a hallway. You move as fast as the slowest person.

All in all, we came to the conclusion that Oceania is just not for us, at least not for another 15 years. Had sailed on Crystal pre COVID. Though Oceania could be a good replacement. We will most likely be trying Celebrity next.

Cabin Review

Penthouse Suite

Comfortable bed, great closet. Like the new shower. Biggest problem was the toilet constantly smelled of stale pee. They cleaned it and deoderized. It then smelled like sweet stale pee.

Port Reviews

Cobh (Cork)

Blarney Castle was a great excursion.


Very little to do here.

Isle of Portland (England)

Cofe Castle ruins was the highlight of the trip. Just wish we had a couple more hours in port, were lots of other things I wanted to see. But we had an hour before the cruise and then about 90 mins after we got back before all aboard.

Lerwick (Shetland Islands)

Moussa island Excursion was an incredibly wonderful surprise. A 6 mile walk around the island that includes a 2000 year old Broch, a bird reserve, sheep, lots of sheep, a ferry ride, whole thing was just fun and interesting.

Newcastle (England)

No excursion really needed. You can take the shuttle to town, see the keep, explore the city, have a pint or two, and find your way back to the shuttle

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