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144 Oceania Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

This was our 4th cruise with Oceania and we were just on the Riviera in February for a Caribbean cruise. Oceania is our cruiseline of choice because we like the size of the ship and the excellent food and service. Pre-Cruise: We flew ... Read More
This was our 4th cruise with Oceania and we were just on the Riviera in February for a Caribbean cruise. Oceania is our cruiseline of choice because we like the size of the ship and the excellent food and service. Pre-Cruise: We flew into Venice a day early and stayed at a hotel near the Piazza Roma and enjoyed the sights of Venice. We had a private tour of Venice the morning of boarding so we did not get to the ship until mid-afternoon so there was no line for checkin and the Terrace Cafe was empty when we went for a quick lunch. Cabin: We were in a PH2 on deck 10 (#10035) which was right next to the elevators but there was no problem with noise and we really liked the convenience of being close to the elevators. The cabin was big enough for us and had plenty of storage space. I especially like the walkin closet and all the drawers.Our butler was great and whenever we called for extra ice or sparkling water it was delivered quickly. We only did 1 breakfast in the room and it came on time and was hot. Dining: We found the dining and food on the Riviera to be just as good as on previous cruises. We had most of our breakfasts in the main dining room and the staff were always very pleasant and the food was good, We usually had lunches ashore. Dinners were mainly in the specialty restaurants and we were fortunate to get an extra reservation in both Red Ginger and Jacques (our 2 favourites). We enjoyed all the food and the only time we had an issue was when we brought a bottle of wine we had bought onshore to the Terrace Cafe for dinner and they could not locate it. They did eventually find it but then the wine steward was not around very often so we had to ask for service to get our glasses refilled. Service was good in all the other restaurants. Shipboard Activities: This was a port intensive cruise so we did not get to many of the shipboard activities.We did enjoy the pool and spa deck, the string quartet before dinner and afternoon tea. The pool was very busy most days since it was very hot out. The spa deck was really hot so we didn't stay up there for very long. We noticed the demographics were very different on this cruise with a lot more families and children and generally a livelier crowd. The bars were very busy! We didn't go to any of the evening shows but noticed that the musical productions were the same as what we saw in February. Excursions: We did mostly private excursions not through Oceania and they were very good. We did 2 excursions with Oceania. The first was to Murano & Burano and we enjoyed the boat ride to the islands and the tour guides gave a good description of the lagoon and the islands. The glass blowing demonstration in Murano was interesting and there was enough free time to walk around afterwards. In Burano we skipped the lace demonstration and had a nice lunch instead. The second excursion was in Corfu to the Acheillion Palace. This was an OE excursion so it was quite a bit more expensive but with a smaller group(12 people) in a van. However, we went to the same places as the large group so it was just as crowded. The tour guide was good and we had the earpieces so we could hear her, but I did not think it was worth the extra dollars. Ports: We enjoyed all the ports but found them to be very crowded with tourists and it was very hot while we were there. This took away from our enjoyment , especially in Santorini, but this is not a fault of Oceania. We usually found a nice cafe or restaurant near the water and spent a few hours there eating and people watching! Disembarkation: This was the easiest and fastest disembarkation I have ever experienced. They made the announcement, we walked off, got our luggage and were off on our tour of Athens in about 5 minutes. Fantastic! Overall, we enjoyed this cruise and are happy with Oceania and the Riviera. We are looking forward to our two future cruises! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Israel and the Greek Isles. We spent 3 days in Athens before the cruise and 2 after the cruise. We have been cruising since the early 80's. We chose this ship because we aren't ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Israel and the Greek Isles. We spent 3 days in Athens before the cruise and 2 after the cruise. We have been cruising since the early 80's. We chose this ship because we aren't comfortable with very large or very small ships. 1,250 passengers was just right for us. Embarkation and debarkation went very smooth. The ship is well laid out. The food in all venues was excellent. We visited the Terrace Buffet one evening and they were grilling lobster tails, lamb chops, slicing prime rib, and serving dover sole. It was excellent. The specialty restaurants were very good. Service was excellent in all restaurants. The ports; Crete, Haifa, Cyprus, Patmos and Santorini were excellent. We missed one port, Rhodes, because the winds were too strong. It added an additional day at sea which was nice. We didn't attend the shows. We turn in about 10:30. The casino was fun, glad to see they still have a craps table. I did feel somewhat sorry for children and teenagers on this ship. Oceania's target market is not children. It is a mature audience. Looking at their advertisement material, it never shows kids. Leave them home. It is a mature audience. This isn't a party ship. We met wonderful people from all over the world. Most of them experienced travelers. Many passengers were on extended stays or were repeat customers. We will definitely sail on this ship again. We did a suite, 1000 sq. ft. It was beautiful. Very comfortable, butler service was excellent. My only complaints are they need to improve internet connection. Also, the only area that seemed to be tired was the deck chairs in the outside pool area in the Canyon Ranch Spa. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
This cruise was selected for several reasons. For one, the reputation of Oceania for serving the best food on the ocean was an attraction. Also, the itenery ... we have been to Greece and Italy several times, but those traveling with us ... Read More
This cruise was selected for several reasons. For one, the reputation of Oceania for serving the best food on the ocean was an attraction. Also, the itenery ... we have been to Greece and Italy several times, but those traveling with us had not been to the Mediterranean. It also helped that the price was right! "The Good" ... The public space is lovely. Well cared for and immaculately clean. The staff is the most attentive that I have ever experienced on land or sea. The specialty restaurants were wonderful and diverse. It was refreshing to see that the policy of not allowing passengers to place a book and a hat on a pool lounge chair at 6:00 AM and then return to claim their space after lunch ... is being enforced. All cruise lines talk abut it, but do not have the gonads to enforce it. "The Bad" ... the main dining room was just average at best. It would take a good 15 minutes to be approached by staff. This happened 4 nights in a row. Once they started your table, the service was excellent. The food was dry and lacked flavor. We would have opted out of the main dining room if we had been allowed to dine in the specialty restaurants ... but you are only allowed to dine once in each specialty restaurants per leg of the cruise. If you were less than 45 minutes arriving to board the ship prior to the mandatory departure time, the tent, cold towels, and water were gone. This is not the biggest of deals if the ship is docked but if it is tendered ... good luck location the correct tender. We were forced to have The Princess Cruise Line staff help us find our tender in Santorini ... located in a totally different place than the AM landing point. If you have an independent excursion the staff will not pass out tender passes as you arrive. They wait until all of the cruise line tours are off and then announce that the independent passes will now be passed out ... so there is a major fight to claw yourself up the aisle hoping to secure a pass that allows you to only be 45 minutes late getting off the ship. "The Ugly" Our cabin ... I can only speak for our cabin, and I will not give you the cabin number since the stewardess that maintained this room was not responsible for the lack of preventive maintenance in this cabin. My only complaint with her was that she never replaced the shampoo with 2 days left on the cruise and our balcony glass was never cleaned. We were located at the rear of the ship and the vibration was unacceptable. The cables connecting the TV and the VCR were hanging out all over the place. The knob for the shower rain head kept falling off ... and being a round knob, try turning it on or off whit soap on your hands. The carpet in the room was filthy. The sheers had shrunk and were too narrow to close all of the way. The same issue was a problem with the blackout curtains, thus at 5:30 AM you were hit in the face with shards of sunlight. There were signs of the previous guest in the desk drawer. 2 postcards from a hotel and a Marriott desk pen. I worked for Hilton for 20 plus years and this alone would fail a room. Would I travel with Oceania again? Well, if the deal is good and the itenery is desirable ... you bet! But I do think that Oceania needs to save a bit of money and stop sending me cruise literature ... we something every day from them! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this ship and cruise because of the itinerary - great combination of three days in Israel plus Greek Islands. Also, we are foodies and had heard the food was great, and finally, we do not like a super large ship or one that caters ... Read More
We chose this ship and cruise because of the itinerary - great combination of three days in Israel plus Greek Islands. Also, we are foodies and had heard the food was great, and finally, we do not like a super large ship or one that caters to lots of kids. The food in the main dining room was truly awesome every day - wonderful presentation and unique recipes. Also loved Toscana and Jacques. Did not like Red Ginger (freezing cold in there too) - recipes and flavors not to my liking - odd twist on Thai. We have outstanding Vietnamese, Dim Sum, and Chinese in our home town of Philadelphia - this was not good. Also, dinner up at the buffet area does not even come close to what is served in the other restaurants, soggy baked potatoes, lesser meat quality, soggy lobster tails. All of the restaurants are BEAUTIFUL with outstanding service, china, linens. Versace China in Toscana, for example. Fantastic decorating - Kudos. Lighting a little bit too bright however in some of them. The entire ship is spotless and very well kept and elegant. Not too large and easy to get around. Maybe it was the itinerary - but it seemed that most of the passengers were frumpy looking in the way they dressed with zero style - Attention Walmart Shoppers- was sort of shocked by this. Even at dinner. A lot of "red state" passengers, many of whom were vocal about it at dinner - found this unpleasant and really not acceptable behaviour when you are dining with people you do not know (even if you do know them). We found a mix of Americans, Austrailians, Brits and Asian passengers - mostly older as it has been stated. The evening entertainment was very good and very professional - but geared to an older crowd - we are in our sixties - not our eighties - would like some classic rock or acoustic, etc. We had a cabin with an extended veranda that also included chaise lounges - that was a very nice feature and we enjoyed it quite a bit. We did go on three of the tours but did not appreciate being herded into the tour director's choice of shops, etc. He chose an awful one in Jerusalem with tacky souvenirs and many wooden crosses. There were other places I would have loved to go into but no chance was given. Same thing happened on the way back from Lindos on Rhodes - one couple was THIRTY minutes late and we should have left without them - they never apologized. We then had to stop for a pottery demonstration - that was not listed on the tour itinerary and we were already late getting back to the ship. Time is valuable and i do not like having mine taken from me. Cabins are very comfortable and bed is amazing - it said ours came with a Queen size but it seemed to be a king - was very large. Great linens and mattress so comfortable. Very nice housekeeping, free water, soft drinks, etc. We did not take the beverage package - you have to drink a LOT to make that worthwhile. However, the cocktails are super tiny and they don't really carry the premium brands my husband likes such as Bulleit or Woodford or Knob Creek Bourbon or Bulliet Rye. Great room service and Housekeeping outstanding as well. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Loved the ship, and the crew extended themselves to make certain we were comfortable. A few glitches with the transfer from Rome airport to ship, hopefully future passengers won't have to endure a 3 hour bus ride with no bathroom ... Read More
Loved the ship, and the crew extended themselves to make certain we were comfortable. A few glitches with the transfer from Rome airport to ship, hopefully future passengers won't have to endure a 3 hour bus ride with no bathroom breaks after getting of overseas flights. Food was perfect, lots of choices.We did not take advantage of entertainment , were too tired after long days in port. The ship provided good information about each port, I researched the ports and was able to negotiate without pricey excursions. Even in the unexpected stop in Dubrovnick, the ship provided a free shuttle to the old city, just perfect for walking and exploring. I traveled solo, and the social director went above and beyond to connect the solo travelers. Hated paying double for the cabin though. Value of the trip was great,prices were greatly reduced and almost everyone got an upgrade of some sort. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
This was our 1st Oceania cruise aboard the Riviera, but approximately our 15th cruise, having cruised Celebrity, NCL, RCCL, Holland America and Celebrity (along with a small river cruise in Asia). Overall great impressions with some ... Read More
This was our 1st Oceania cruise aboard the Riviera, but approximately our 15th cruise, having cruised Celebrity, NCL, RCCL, Holland America and Celebrity (along with a small river cruise in Asia). Overall great impressions with some "comments" that I'll note below. We choose Oceania Riviera because of a great special we found via TravelZoo - received discounted cruise fare (basically 2-1), included airfare (more on that later), free unlimited WiFi on board (one device at a time only), and a choice of house beverage package, shore excursions or ship board credit. We usually do not spend this much on a cruise, but since the airfare to Europe was included and Oceania has a great policy of having many "extras" included that other cruise lines nickle and dime you for, plus we were looking for a more "upscale" experience, we thought we would give it a try. We did opt to upgrade to the prestige beverage package (on board at Reception) and it was worth it for us. Gave you more flexibility. I would have liked some more variance in the wine by the glass options at different bars, but still decent selection. Pretty good selection of beers but no craft style beers (that would be nice addition). Nice choose of sparkling wines and Champagne. Oceania does it right to include bottled waters (still/sparking), juice, smoothies, coffee, sodas, etc in your cruise price. Mini fridge in room with small selection of items and 2 large still bottled waters in cabin per day. Robes and slippers were provided for use during trip. Many people seemed to like to wear these to the pool - which I found somewhat odd. Ship: beautiful. About 4 years old I believe. The ship holds about 1250 passengers and we were told there were about 1200 on board. So while almost full, it never felt really crowded (other than the few days we tried breakfast in the Terrace Cafe - buffet). It is so easy to get around the ship. We are used to bigger cruise ships and while it did lack some of the extra activities and more bars/things to do - it felt very serene and relaxing. Good atmosphere. Ship seemed very clean and staff was very friendly (with exception of a horribly rude piano player, Bobby, in Martinis Bar). Everyone else was super accommodating (I don't think they know the word "No"!) and very helpful - for example even in Terrace Cafe they will take your plate of food for you and bring it to your table. Lots of interesting art work around the ship. Casino - just OK - 4 tables - 2 with black jack, one with poker and the other I never saw open. roulette and I think craps. Slots machines - OK - but none of the newer type which I prefer. CAsinon bar in middle of the casino was great with good serve and drinks. The lobby area, while beautiful, it a bit of a let down from the large mega cruise ships. Spa/Fitness Center is very nice. The Fitness center is pretty large for this sized ship and had nice equipment (though limited number) and a nice sized room for stretching, exercises, yoga, etc. The machines were very nice and most of them offered you a nice view out the large windows. Towels and selection of water, gatorade, etc was included. Cabins: We had 8032 a regular Verandah cabin - I think about 282 sq feet. Nice size and larger than the other ships we have been on. Did get lots of offers to upgrade for a fee (upsells), but decided to stick with this cabin. Storage space was adequate. Room was pretty roomy and comfortable. Bed was awesome!!!! Room was quiet. Bathroom - larger than other ships, but felt that the separate bath/shower was a waste of room for us and would have loved a larger walk in shower. The walk in shower was a bit tight but had 2 shower heads and plenty of hot water. Bathroom was attractive looking. Had flat screen TV with DVD player (not Blu Ray). TV stations a bit limited, but had several news stations and music stations and the daily lectures on ports from our cruise director were informative. They do give you Bvlgari amenities that included lotion, shampoo-bath gel and conditioner. They were fine, but nothing I'd rave about. Nice that we did not have to worry about packing these items. While our room was kept clean and comfortable, the floor carpeting could have used a good cleaning. Dining: This is where Oceania excels. The specialty dining restaurants were awesome and my only disappointment was that we were unable to secure more than the guaranteed 4 nights (one in each specialty). It is so great they are included in your cruise price. Can't say enough about how yummy the food was (especially Jacques & Red Ginger). All were fabulous though. Book your reservations early when they open up. Be open to sharing your table as we had some fun dinners with other couples. The main dining room (Grand Dining Room) was good - though I sometimes felt the menu was just so-so on choices. The food was good however and serve was great. We usually ate our breakfast in the Grand dining room and it was good. Prefered that to Terrace Cafe. Waves Grill is a good alternative for a quick lunch or later breakfast, though the menu is limited and didn't seem to change, so after the 1st couple of times there we avoided it for the lack of variety. The coffee bar (Barristas) offers pastries in the morning and small sandwiches at lunch time and little baked goods throughout the rest of the time. This was the only place on the ship where I could find smaller sized pastries which I love. I don't like to waste a whole large pastries that seemed to be everywhere else. The food overall was good or sometimes better than other cruise lines - definitely a selling point for O. Complaints: without a Concierge or above level cabin, your room service breakfast was only cold choices. Though the rest of the time 24 hour room - nice! Good selections and good food (turkey burger was fab and cheese plate a great late night snack). Also we boarded quite late due to the flight plans and there was nothing to eat until 6pm dinner and we were starved! Oh you must do the afternoon 2 - I only had a chance to do it 2 times - but it was great! There are happy hours (2x per day) on the ship were you can get deals on drinks if you don't have the Prestige drink package. Dress code was country club casual and people seemed to adhere - it was nice not to worry about having to dress too formally. Embarkation in Rome - you are a long taxi/ride from the airport (FCO) - take that into consideration - probably took us 45 minutes and there was traffic. Opted to take a shared taxi with 2 other friends - total cost was $130 Euros (the ship charges much much more than that). Getting a taxi was quick and easy as they are all over a FCO and easy to find the taxi line. Getting processed and on the ship was easy (see above complaint re lack of food availability - we got on just after 4pm when dining room (Terrace) had closed. Entertainment: Only saw 2 shows - they all seemed to be at 9:30/9:45 - the singing and dancing were pretty decent, but not up to other cruise line standards. Cruise director Nolan was great and we enjoyed the daily rounds of trivia including name that tune. Shuffleboard and croquet on Deck 15 were fun - but since we were port intensive not a lot of free time except for morning on ship sailing to Zadar. The pool is nice - salt water, but deep (6 feet) with no swallow end. 2 hot tubs - a bit hot for me - but relaxing. Nice lounges and towels and one day they brought out blankets - very nice. Deck area seemed large enough for our cruise, but this was early November so a bit off season. The Culinary Center was a highlight for me. Take one of the cooking classes if you can - it was great!! Did not use the Artists Loft at all. The string orchestra was amazing! They played several times throughout the day at various locations. Just wonderful. Also Emmanuel was a wonderful singer and she gave a great show about Edith Piaf that was quite moving. Don't miss if you can see it. Music several nights in the Horizons lounge that was fun. We did some dancing. Due to port intensive we did not have a lot of late nights, but I heard from some people there was disco dancing until 2pm (which for the older skew of the ship seemed odd - but heard there were like 5 people - lol). Glad to see O accommodated them. Service: outstanding! Better than some other lines we have been on for sure. Though found it odd that we did not meet our cabin steward until day 3. I loved the absence of "upsells" announcements on O (i.e. jewelry selling announcements, watches, no push for photos - well no photos that I saw). Made for it being peaceful and relaxing on board. Ports & Excursions: I would not recommend using O's shore excursions. 1st I found them outrageously expensive than other options and I heard many complaints from others who did go with them - from being overcrowded (buses of 50 people), problems understanding the Guides, etc. It was easy for us to get off the ship wherever we docked (unlike other cruise lines where you have 3000 plus people all trying to get off). Loved the bottled waters given as you departed for shore each day. Nice touch. Would have liked a small bag to carry to port each day that we have received on other cruise lines - I suspect that if you are a repeat customer on O or an upper level cabin you get one. They do provide umbrellas but they are the large kind and we choose to bring our small compact ones from home. We enjoyed most of the ports with the exception of Zadar - just not that impressive or that much to do there that interested us. Kotor Monte Negro was canceled due to weather so we were bummed, but the alternative was Dubrovnik and it was fabulous! Walk the walled old town if you can (lots of steps so not friendly to all). We thought the Greek port (Argostoli) was a bit odd of a choice when so many other nicer Greek ports available - but had a fabulous taxi ride from Christopher and we saw some beautiful beaches and scenery in the area, had a great local lunch. The light house - not a real must see - fyi. Venice was easy to get off the ship and grab a taxi ($45 euros) to Marco Polo airport. No need to book the transfer from O. People that did paid about $165 pp and complained about it as they need to be standing outside for a long time and it was cold. Airfare: ok here's my complaint, but partly my fault for not complaining to O before too late. We had 2 changes of planes before we reached Rome and on our way home from Venice. I heard from others that if I had complained they would have given us a better flight option. Plus we had such close connections in Munich and in Toronto (flew out of San Diego) that we were stressed that we or our luggage would not make the ship. On the way home - too long of a layover at SFO (almost 4 hours). After traveling for almost 24 hours, that really wasn't ideal. I have since heard that you can possibly opt out of the included air and they will give you compensation to do so - no idea how much - but wouldn't hurt to ask. Tip: it was SO worth it to upgrade to Premium Economy for $99. Age group - definitely older group. Only saw 3 kids (which was fine by me). We are late 40's and probably more of the younger group on the ship, though we did see some couples in their 30's. Suggestion: add a bar or add TVs to a bar so sports can be viewed during NFL, etc. Would I sail Oceania Riviera again? If the price was right I would. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The ports of call were places we had not visited before. On the the 4th or 5th day we were unable to go to Kotor, Montenegro as it was very windy and the captain felt it would be unsafe to ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The ports of call were places we had not visited before. On the the 4th or 5th day we were unable to go to Kotor, Montenegro as it was very windy and the captain felt it would be unsafe to sail to this port so on the day before he made arrangements to dock at Dubrovnik, Croatia which was a wonderful port and we truly enjoyed walking through the old city. The cruise line was even able to arrange 3 excursions at the last minute. The food and specialty restaurants which were included were fabulous. Our friends had lobster almost every evening. The service was excellent throughout the ship. The only downsides were, poor entertainment in the evening, bottles of wine were expensive with nothing less than $47 per bottle, the excursions were expensive and the transfers especially in Venice were very expensive so we booked our own at 1/3 the cost. Would definitely choose Oceania again, especially the Riviera or Marina. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
We will never travel on Oceania again. Rampant sickness -- the previous sailing of the Marina also had sickness involving the crew and passengers. It carried over to our cruise. My wife was violently ill for more than 18 hours. The ... Read More
We will never travel on Oceania again. Rampant sickness -- the previous sailing of the Marina also had sickness involving the crew and passengers. It carried over to our cruise. My wife was violently ill for more than 18 hours. The response from the medical center was terrible. My wife never saw or spoke to the doctor, who nonetheless prescribed a course of treatment that involved taking antibiotics that had the same side effects that she was already experiencing. The nurse could not have been more dis-interested, except to make sure that we were quarantined. Oh yes, and please sign these releases authorizing Oceania to charge you for the medical services even though the nurse told us that the costs would be covered by Oceania .... and please sign this release authorizing Oceania to release medical and other information to such organizations as the FBI (I am not making this up!!!!). I refused to sign. Poor service -- a waiter in one of the restaurants made a sarcastic and demeaning comment to my wife when she was inquiring about a menu item. It ruined our evening and we ended up leaving the restaurant and eating elsewhere. Dealt with Reception Services on 3 separate occasions. First expressed concern about being charged for a particular service, given assurances that it would not be charged, then having to deal with them to get it removed from our bill. When my wife was ill I went to the medical center (closed of course!), then read the sign that said go to Reception Services if an emergency. Reception Services response -- "we are not medical people, wait until the medical center opens up and get in line". Why have a sign that refers you to Reception Services for help if no help is available? Because we believed that the ship remained unsafe (sickness continued to grow in numbers), we decided to leave the ship at the next available port of call after quarantine was lifted. I was presented with a bill that included payment for shore excursions that were part of the original cruise package, including ones that we were not able to take because of quarantine and ones that were scheduled after we left the ship. I was also charged for other items that were not supposed to be included. It took some effort to have them removed, but not without "attitude" on the part of the Reception Services staff. Poor Communications It was difficult to get information about what was going on around the ship with the sickness. There was both the "official" announcements and the information provided by individual crew members. The information from crew members proved to be more reliable (the "official" announcements only gave the bare information and only what they wanted you to hear). Some services were "temporarily closed", but in fact never opened. Even Poorer Response When we told them we were getting off the ship because it was unsafe (because of the sickness) we asked for compensation. We were referred to "Guest Relations" in Miami. What a joke that is. Guest Relations does not talk to guests. You have to write them and they will get back to you within 3 weeks (maybe). Well, it took a lot longer than 3 weeks and of course the response was we will give you the equivalent of 2 days cruise credits so long as you use them in the next 12 months. Everyone who was affected received a letter from the ship's Master with this offer (except us of course). In short, we paid good money, and Oceania offered us something of no value in return. Oh yes, it took more than 7 weeks before anyone even offered an apology. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
Marina is a beautiful ship and the public areas are not only amazingly gorgeous in their decor but the entire ship is just a joy to behold. All the public areas have amazing and interesting furniture, works of art, soft furnishings, ... Read More
Marina is a beautiful ship and the public areas are not only amazingly gorgeous in their decor but the entire ship is just a joy to behold. All the public areas have amazing and interesting furniture, works of art, soft furnishings, fabrics etc. The ports of call on this cruise were so interesting. We visited Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, Bari Italy, Corfu Greece, Zakynthos Greece, Valetta Malta, Catania Siciliy, Naples/Pompei and the cruise disembarked in Rome. The veranda stateroom on level 8 was very acceptable with a comfortable bed and it was clean and well presented. All of the staff were lovely as usual and did an excellent job. Shore excursions were all wonderful and very interesting and 'destination services' staff who organise the booking of on shore excursions did an excellent job. Entertainment was fairly tame but we had chef Jacques Pepin on board which was enough entertainment on its own and we so enjoyed seeing his face around the ship and at the book signing. Cruise Director and his male assistant were average and could have been more helpful with the following issue but I suspect he may have been unwell. Much to our disappointment this cruise was ruined by a mystery virus or food poisoning, which was reported the CDC. The captain made an announcement some days after the problem surfaced advising '...anyone who feels ill should remain in their room and notify the medical centre and the doctor would visit them in their room and the service would be complimentary (free)'. We soon discovered this was incorrect advice, the same incorrect advice was repeated a couple of days later in another announcement from the captain to our astonishment. The medical service was not free but was charged and the rates were quoted over the phone by a the nurse who would not send the doctor unless we agreed to be charged fees and reported certain symptoms. I had an extensive conversation with the general manager about the inconsistent advice from the captain. I was so glad that I had my own medical knowledge and carried medications with me for such events as I found the medical services on board rude and of no help at all. Obviously the hypocratic oath has a dollar value with the medical staff on this ship. The television, which is inadequate at the best of times with limited channels and poor picture bombarded us with a cruise director from another ship (Dottie) singing to us with instructions about how to wash our hands - it was repetitive, annoying and one didn't even want to turn the TV on. We were treated like children with the repetitive messages on the TV and around the ship about cleaning our hands and instead of having a wonderful experience we began to hate the cruise. All the elegant trimmings and presentations were removed from any dining experience and were greeted with all the food displays in the Terrace cafe being wrapped in cling wrap (as in the actual glass covered enclosures). We were forbidden from touching any food, we were policed about using the antibacterial fluids upon entry to food serving areas so much so that my hands suffered a severe outbreak rash from an allergic reaction the product - if I objected to using it on my hands that had just been washed in the adjacent bathroom I was not allowed into the dining room. We were not allowed to touch or even use a salt and pepper shaker let alone cutlery on the table - we were given cutlery wrapped in a napkin onto a totally bare table minus all the lovely Versace china and wine glasses that are normally displayed at their dining venues. We understood the precautions that they were taking but it was a horrid, policed, sanitary, unappealing cruise which soured our previously favourable view of Oceania and its management. We also lost faith in the ability of management to convey an accurate instruction to the passengers about medical care in the situation. They seemed to just be rubbing their hands together about charging people for a medical issue which was clearly out of control on board the ship. I was shocked to see a clearly unwell and exhausted staff member serving coffee in Baristas when he was clearly unwell and exhausted but someone must have signed him on as fit for duty. No wonder Oceania had a problem on board ship! I had a great deal of on board credit on this cruise - in excess of $US1000 and as the cruise was so dreadful I did not spend much of my on board credit. On the 6th day I received a letter stating I should go to reception before disembarkation day to receive a cash refund. I still have this letter even though the reception staff tried to keep it. I want it as proof of their poor attitude and inept service. The letter advising a cash refund softened my frustration and anger about the unpleasantness of the cruise due to matters beyond our control. I considered that was the least that Oceania could do for us given I'd paid thousands of dollars to do the cruise and it had been a complete disaster as far as a pleasant experience goes. When I took my letter to reception to collect the cash as per their instructions I was told that they wouldn't give it to me. It was non refundable. Having been refunded / reimbursed previously on another Oceania cruise that encountered a hurricane I had sincerely believe that they intended to do what they stated in their letter as a gesture of goodwill. (I stress that it was a voluntary refund and not requested). I felt humiliated and angry at being denied my money which they/Oceania told me to collect from reception desk. I was left on the last night of the cruise with a great deal of money not spent and refused a refund which Oceania put in writing and offered to give me. There were other passengers waiting in line who were being given the same news and they ushered them away to avoid a scene. Needless to say I left the cruise the next morning furious with Oceania management. From the Captain through to the Medical Staff through to the General Manager I felt that they all needed some training regarding delivering a clear and consistent message, honouring what they put in writing, customer service and how to not treat passengers like 5 year olds! Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
I had researched Oceania quite a lot before booking this cruise and it does what it says on the tin. The experience is based around service,destinations and especially food. All three exceeded our reasonably high expectations. We had ... Read More
I had researched Oceania quite a lot before booking this cruise and it does what it says on the tin. The experience is based around service,destinations and especially food. All three exceeded our reasonably high expectations. We had only cruised once before, on the Royal Caribbean's Allure, a mega ship and although not impressed by the Caribbean,as a destination, we really enjoyed the cruise experience onboard. We are therefore cruising novices, which can be both positive and negative for a review perspective. It can be difficult to give comparisons re cruises but sometimes I get the perception that for some nothing is as good as it used to be. That may be absolutely true in some things but equally our evaluation of quality can become distorted over time and we can become "spoilt" or as we get older our ability to maximise our experience diminishes. Anyway that could all be my own nonsense but here goes re my review. From the minute we arrived at the Pireus terminal by taxi from Athens our embarkation was very smooth. We were met at the entrance,our luggage immediately taken and we were guided through the stages very quickly. As we boarded we were met by very pleasant staff who welcomed us warmly and advised us a buffet was available as was our cabin. As we had upgraded to concierge we were met in our cabin by a bottle of bubbly which was pretty decent. The cabin was very nice,certainly a cut above that on the Allure and the bathroom with Bulgari toiletries were very nice, although at 6. 5,a slightly bigger shower would have been nice but it was fine. The bed was excellent and the balcony was fine. Our cabin attendant Natalie introduced herself immediately and from then on she was first class organising diet drinks for our fridge, sorting our complimentary pressing, cases etc Throughout our cruise she was excellent, always very pleasant and helpful as was her colleague. Just a quick note re concierge class, is it worth it? With the access to the concierge lounge, the bottle of bubbly access to the spa terrace, the complimentary pressing and the toiletries, probably just yes. Then it began,the eating and drinking. The food on board varied from pretty good to excellent. From the terrace buffet to the MDR and specialty restaurants we really enjoyed the food, as did all the other people on board that we spoke to, and there were many, even marathon cruisers with 700+ nights under their belts. The odd choice we made was not ideal but that was our issue. Even had the much maligned onion soup which I thought was very nice.A particular treat, which I only discovered after a conversation over dinner with a wonderful couple from Yorkshire, was lunch in the MDR. Really lovely ambience and super food. Highly recommended. We had a premium beverage package and suspect we maximised the value out of it. The house wines were decent and you could drink almost anything else. Waiter service was very good both in the restaurants and at the pool area. I didn't have to keep asking for another glass as on the Allure. My glass was kept topped up as required and the somolliers often remembered our preferences from previous encounters which really impressed. We did the La Reserve experience while on board and it was extremely good, much added to by the head Bulgarian waiter, whom I met on several occasions afterwards. He really added to the evening and throughout the cruise I noticed his immensely pleasant and engaging interaction with numerous fellow passengers of all ages and nationalities. With regard to our fellow passengers, I suppose that is for many what really can make or break a cruise. We met a lot of really nice, interesting people on board. The vast majority were very friendly, the odd shy or odd indidual , but that is life. We are in our late forties and ewarly fifties, among the the youngest passengers on board, which can be a bonus. We met one guy , 87 initially on a tour and he was fantastic as was his lovely wife, so age is no barrier on Oceania, but maybe not ideal for the sub 40's and certainly not kids.At dinner, on tours, tenders in bars and especially among the smokers(not one myself) there was always interaction , this was much more the case than on the larger Allure. No cliques or snobbery detected , as some people explained occurred on other lines. The itinerary was the main reason for booking this tour and it was excellent. Israel was the highlight. We toured independently which was extremely good. The Greek Islands were beautiful. The tender service ran very smoothly, absolutely no complaints.. we didn't take any tours organised by Oceania. Service onboard was excellent, the staff were nearly always very pleasant and never unpleasant. Entertainment was limited and seemed a concern to some. Evenings were centered around eating and for those looking for entertainment or vibrant nightlife into the small hours, then dissappointment is likely. It was fine but much more limited,perhaps understandably, given the age profile and passenger numbers , as compared to a mega ship.The cruise director John seemed omnipresent and was always very pleasant. I suppose the real question is would we go back? Well it's 10 days since our return and yes tomorrow! We had a wonderful 10days on Riviera , not unattainable perfection but if your looking for, excellent service, food and company it certainly ticks the boxes. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We actually chose a cruise in November on the Marina. Shortly after, we were contacted by Oceania to switch to this cruise, giving us many percs. We are so glad we switched! The weather was perfect; the ship is amazing; the food, even ... Read More
We actually chose a cruise in November on the Marina. Shortly after, we were contacted by Oceania to switch to this cruise, giving us many percs. We are so glad we switched! The weather was perfect; the ship is amazing; the food, even better; the service, impeccable. Embarkation was a breeze as was disembarkation. We felt the entertainment was good, not great. The friendliness of the staff was incredible. We tried each of the specialty restaurants and found them all outstanding! The Grand Dining room was excellent as well. We really enjoyed having lunch daily in the Terrace Café. We did go to Waves Grill once for lunch and the food was very, very good. The milk shakes are to die for! We had a great time at one of the Culinary Classes. We learned a great deal and will be using some of the principles taught. We have previously sailed on NCL three times, but my wife and I will never go on any other cruises than with Oceania! Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We decided to try Oceania, normally we travel on Celebrity or one of the Royal Caribbean ships. We enjoyed the experience. It was more expensive that our other cruises. One couple felt that our cabin category should have had a larger room ... Read More
We decided to try Oceania, normally we travel on Celebrity or one of the Royal Caribbean ships. We enjoyed the experience. It was more expensive that our other cruises. One couple felt that our cabin category should have had a larger room size My husband and I enjoyed the specialty restaurants. The service in Jacques and the Italian restaurant was outstanding. We weren't that happy with the food in the Grand Dining Room. Polo Grill was ok for us. Enjoyed the spa treatments. Manicure and Pedicure and massage on different days. Specials are available during the cruise. Entertainment on the next to the last night was very good. Try to make that show if you only can go to one! Waves Grill my husband and I enjoyed breakfast there. Smoothies are good. If you want to eat lunch outside - you will enjoy it. The staff at Waves provides excellent service. For dinner we went to the buffet and had lobster along with various seafood and sushi. So plan to eat there at least one night for dinner. Service was excellent and you can eat on the back deck. Land excursions make sure you read the details. We should have just enjoyed going into the port and walking around instead of boarding buses for tours - bus rides took up too much of our valuable time. Before you book the cruise ask your travel agent what is the best deal that they can get for you....we got a great one and that is why we took the cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We cruised for the first time last year and went with Oceania and chose Oceania again this year as we were so impressed previously. We were on the Marina last year and the Riviera is an identical sister ship so we felt at home (even ... Read More
We cruised for the first time last year and went with Oceania and chose Oceania again this year as we were so impressed previously. We were on the Marina last year and the Riviera is an identical sister ship so we felt at home (even booking the same stateroom number). Whist we deemed this cruise excellent there were some small negatives when compared to last year: the attention to detail in cleaning the stateroom and replacement of bathroom consumables, the difficulty of some serving staff in the buffet restaurant to understand requests and also greater detail in briefing them on the food they were serving would have helped. The entertainment was better than last year (apart from a rather dire ventriloquist who had used up all his A-level material in his first show and was left with nothing for his second show) with a very talented team of core singers who made the shows and poolside performances wonderful. Food was excellent in all the restaurants; the four speciality restaurants exceptional. However, for probably the first time the Brits outnumbered the Americans by a considerable number and so this exposed some failings in understanding UK preferences: e.g., the night they offered traditional roast beef and Yorkshire pudding there was not a roast potato in sight and they totally ran out of orange marmalade by day 3!Looking forward to our next Oceania cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We chose this cruise to experience something different. We flew to Venice a couple of days before and stayed in Mestre. We then boarded the Riviera on 31st August, it was everything we had read about and then some. The staff were ... Read More
We chose this cruise to experience something different. We flew to Venice a couple of days before and stayed in Mestre. We then boarded the Riviera on 31st August, it was everything we had read about and then some. The staff were amazing and helped us a lot, my husband who is disabled was very well cared for, he has a little mobility scooter, and the waiters etc, took turns in riding it "to park it". Stateroom, 10101 was lovely, we had to park the scooter outside, as we needed a little more space, don't think the extra we paid for "concierge level" was really worth it, perhaps next time we will think again. Dining, was great, lots of choice in beautiful décor. Entertainment and Activities. We felt was not that good. There is only one show a night, and if you were having a late meal and lingering over it, you missed the show. There is room for improvement. If you did not go ashore, there was little to do. As neither of us could reach the Sports Deck we could not use it We travelled together, no children or other people. Ports were very interesting, a little restricting for disabled people. We did our own shore excursions. Would we go again, hopefully yes. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
This is our fifth cruise and it was chosen because of the size of ship and the ports visited. Booked through a travel agent and all forms and tickets arrived prior to leaving our home base. Able to logon to the website and prefill details ... Read More
This is our fifth cruise and it was chosen because of the size of ship and the ports visited. Booked through a travel agent and all forms and tickets arrived prior to leaving our home base. Able to logon to the website and prefill details and preferences for cruise as well as book shore excursions and book restaurants. Our weather perfect, seas smooth so great conditions. We were really looking forward to this cruise but upon embarkation we were filled with gloom as we had just completed a different cruise just prior to this one that spoiled us. Our personal taste but but the decor felt dark, heavy and claustrophobic. Apparently refurb in 2014, certainly not in the decor area. Embarkation: After we dropped our bags we weren't sure where we were to proceed next, as I moved forward I was rudely told to stop and go out somewhere else. Signage or pleasant direction would be nice. Strange place, minimal sleep, people get confused or have no idea where to go. Apart from that desk check in quick and easy. Leaing and returning to ship slow and cumbersome with staff having to take your card and scan it, tap and go better option. Cabin: Penthouse Suite. Roomy with good sized verandah and nice outdoor furniture. Bed very comfortable, linens lovely, bathroom linen very good. No tea or coffee making facilities in this cabin but use of lounge or butler I suppose for this. Adequate storage in cabin and wardrobe great space with enough hangers for clothes. Safe inside wardrobe. Cabin lovely and clean and kept this way throughout the cruise. Bathroom amenities of good quality. Hand hygiene: Found it to be lax, hard to see the containers at times and the alcohol rub in the executive lounge was empty the entire cruise. Laundry: Price per item by staff or self serve laundry for use on each floor for a small price per wash and dry cycle. Iron available in laundry room. Cool bottled water available in laundry room. Executive Lounge: This was part of the Penthouse deal. It was a nice quiet area most of the time with nibblies, tea and coffee and computer and printing. Ruined of course by ignorant people that were dressed inappropriately, I mean shirtless man in shorts loudly talking and disturbing everyone there, then proceeding to "pick over" the foods for his selection even though tongs right on front of him. Yuk, Staff: Appeared friendly, nothing outstanding. Remember to place do not disturb sign on door whenever in cabin as had a few walkins when in cabin. Bit disconcerting. Meals: Found them to be average, served by staff behind glass that was good to stop people fingering food but lead to not really getting the amount or felt a bit rushed at times to make a decision. Tables cleared promptly, able to share tables if none available. Tried various restaurants but nothing really grabbed us with fantastic flavours. After all the hype about the food it wasn't for us. Tendering: Excellent. Boats good and well organised. Internet: our cabin came with 200 mins of free internet for one device at a time, most of the internet time spent was for it to connect or timed trying to connect to email or download small item.. Found it very frustrating and not really worth it. I do realise we are at sea but having experienced other at sea internet this was one of the slowest. Most people only want to look at emails or download their home newspaper etc not stream movies whilst away. Entertainment: TV in cabin and movies etc on offer poor choice, as tv internet based it was "thinking" a lot. Alcohol: Quite expensive, drank very little on board. Smoking: Found the designated smoking area to be too visible. Had to walk past it from our cabin to get to meals until we worked out a different route. Quite near the pool area. Could smell it all the time. The ports were ok, had previously been to Zadar but with Oceania we were in a port away from the main area. Did not use any of the port excursions, found them expensive. All in all, it was ok, for our expectations and the hype it was not to our taste. I wouldn't book again, some of the lesser cruises we have been on were better value and more enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We selected Oceania Riveria for their port itinerary and it did not disappoint. Fantastic rooms, excellent speciality restaurants, beautiful ship and lovely hard working staff made this a wonderful experience. We booked an A3 concierge ... Read More
We selected Oceania Riveria for their port itinerary and it did not disappoint. Fantastic rooms, excellent speciality restaurants, beautiful ship and lovely hard working staff made this a wonderful experience. We booked an A3 concierge stateroom which comes with a few extras like access to the heated spa pool area at the front of the ship which we loved and used most days, a bottle of champagne on arrival, early online booking of speciality restaurants, access to a small concierge lounge on level 8 and the bathroom was stocked with beautiful Bvlgari products. For us these extras certainly justified the additional cost. We meet a lot of lovely people who were happy to share their cruising and port experiences and I'm sure we will be friends for many years to come. The entertainment was the only area we marked down. Overall great value cruise, highly recommend Oceania Riveria. Looking forward to our next cruise with Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Oceania offered a trip to ports which interested us, with a reputation for fine service. In most aspects, we were very satisfied. The cabin was commodious and well furnished, with a full bed, love seat, desk, two large closets, and a ... Read More
Oceania offered a trip to ports which interested us, with a reputation for fine service. In most aspects, we were very satisfied. The cabin was commodious and well furnished, with a full bed, love seat, desk, two large closets, and a large bathroom tiled in granite which included both spacious shower and a tub. The Riviera had an elegant, low key color scheme of beige, gold, tan, and black accents, unlike the bright, gaudy decor on some other ships. Dining service differed from what we had experienced elsewhere: servers behind the glass counters dish out food at passengers' requests. Passengers may not help themselves to any food at the buffet. Often, ship employees offered to carry food and drinks to tables, so that passengers did not carry their own plates or cups. We had not been told our cabin number at the time of boarding, so we could not tag our luggage with cabin numbers. As a result, it took several hours, longer than for most other passengers, for us to receive our luggage. The staff had to consult the office to look up the number. That was frustrating. Quality and variety of food varied. Lunches offered the least variety for those of us who do not eat meat or shellfish. The hot vegetables were always steamed carrots, cauliflower, and broccoli medley. At the outdoor grill, we found freshly grilled fish with limited salad offerings. Dinners were generally good, although we would have liked more pasta choices and greater variety of local fish, especially when sailing in the Mediterranean. Very plain salmon was available daily. Seasoning was also generally plain Continental, except in the specialty restaurants. We did appreciate access to the specialty restaurants. Jacques, the French restaurant, disappointed. Dover sole was delicious, but the night's special entree, sea bream, tasted very fishy and over cooked. Salads and appetizers were also disappointing at Jacques. Tuscany, the Italian specialty restaurant, served Manhattan caliber food, with excellent service. Red Ginger had decent food, but not on a par with the Asian food that we enjoy in New York. The waiter was also brusque. Wines were overpriced. The seven bottle wine package included mainly fair choices, with high markups. Most of the ports were very worthwhile: Alicante, Algeria (Granada disappointed), Cadiz (ship biking excursion was great!), Casablanca (terrible waste of time, dirty), Gibraltar ( extremely worthwhile), Lisbon (lovely city). Many passengers were older, as we are in our mid- 50's. We noticed that the ship accommodated those who used wheelchairs. Ship entertainment was fairly standard, pleasant. The comedian was very good. Disembarking had better service than at most ships. Ship staff took our luggage from the dock to the area of waiting taxis. That ended our vacation on a very satisfactory note. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Having cruised once before with Oceania, we were thrilled to cruise with them again. We chose the three day paid pre-cruise on land in Athens including tours, hotels, and food to begin with. The cruise entitled Cradle of History, would ... Read More
Having cruised once before with Oceania, we were thrilled to cruise with them again. We chose the three day paid pre-cruise on land in Athens including tours, hotels, and food to begin with. The cruise entitled Cradle of History, would start on the third day on the renovated Sirena ship in port in Athens. This cruise included ports in Greece, Italy, Israel, and Cairo.. After arriving in the hotel in Athens, we waited hours for our tour of Athens and dinner to begin. The tour guide didn't show up. We and another abandoned couple had to use the couple's SKYPE to contact Oceania to get them to send a tour guide. The people at the 5 star hotel in Athens were not helpful. Luckily the tour guide Oceania found last minute was wonderful. Our beds were uncomfortable and my husband got food poisoning at the second 5 star hotel on the land tour. When we arrived on the ship, we found Patmos, Cairo, and Alexandria were cancelled. We were never told anything before that. A letter said Patmos had bad weather. It was 82 degrees and sunny. Greek cab drivers said there was no trouble in Egypt on the news. Nothing was on the Internet. If there was, why weren't we told about it earlier? The captain never addressed the port changes. Why was Oceania offering people $3,000 and more to go home when they arrived because of overbooking? Maybe the ship wasn't ready. We found toilets that took three glasses of water to flush, unremodeled bathrooms with showers so small that the shower curtain clung to you while you showered, broken drawers, broken air vents, etc. This ship was supposed to be remodeled! The concierge upgrade wasn't worth it. There was no extra concierge room or help. Tour guides were frantically rebooking tours as Oceania changed three ports the day before sailing! We stood in lines trying to find a tour. The entertainment was unexciting and lackluster. The food was good in the buffet and sparse in the dining room. Most of the tours were wonderful with the tour people very friendly. In Limosol, we were told Oceania didn't pay enough for all of us to go inside the castle and Apollo gardens so we had to "hang" over the fences. The staff was very helpful on board the ship. They were trying to make the best of a difficult situation. Many, many, people complained to the concierge and others about the situation, but to no avail. We were promised that Oceania would get back to us about the land tour pre-cruise situation, last minute cancelled ports, and problems on the ship. After frequent letters and cruise surveys filled out, we have heard nothing! Our bucket list tour that we saved and saved for was a huge disappointment. It would be nice if Oceania started caring about their passengers. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
This is my 4th time with Oceania in 4 years. Booked Sirena because of the supposedly upgrade to be completed by May 2016. Have previously cruised with Regatta, Insignia and Nautica. Very disappointed with the overall look of Sirena. No ... Read More
This is my 4th time with Oceania in 4 years. Booked Sirena because of the supposedly upgrade to be completed by May 2016. Have previously cruised with Regatta, Insignia and Nautica. Very disappointed with the overall look of Sirena. No where near as classy as other ships. we had an A1 class cabin. Bathrooms appear smaller than had before. No renovations to bathrooms, cannot get cold water in the bathroom either. Water filter is also poor, as not filtered enough. Face cloths become yellow when switch tap on over the cloth because of poor water filter. Staff are obliging but are lacking in service skills plus notice the decreased number of staff on the floor in all areas of food and service. Could not fault the meals, in choice or quality, hope this does not change because of ownership of Oceania in general. Horizons is lacking in quantity of furniture and overall look. Sirena lounge is also not adequately furnished for guests to see nightly shows. Poor lay out of seating as unable to see the show floor. No elevation of seats. Ship is smaller than others as missing proper barista lounge, executive lounge, 2 restaurants combined in one. All these things make a difference to your voyage. Will be avoiding Sirena in the future and chose one of the other ships. Much more pleasant ships. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
The Sirena is a mid-sized ship so I was delighted not to see so many people in line during check in. It was smooth and easy. We were extremely disappointed when at check-in they told us that our stop in Egypt was cancelled and provided ... Read More
The Sirena is a mid-sized ship so I was delighted not to see so many people in line during check in. It was smooth and easy. We were extremely disappointed when at check-in they told us that our stop in Egypt was cancelled and provided no explanation for this decision only saying it was foe security reasons. Many of the people booked this trip because we were stopping in Egypt for two days and the cruise line did not offer any compensation. Needless to say there were many irritated passengers. This was our first trip on Oceania and I was impressed with the Sirena. Some other comments claim that the ship was released to soon before renovations were completed but we saw none of that. Clearly they do have the best food at sea and we were impressed with the service and selection of food to choose from. The staff was constantly filling our glasses with water coffee or whatever without the need to ask. We preferred to eat breakfast outside on the nice sun deck at the rear of the ship. I learned that on a midsize ship there are not the long lines for service like you would see on other cruise lines. They also have their upgraded Tuscan Steakhouse and Red Ginger. Both were nice but I thought the Red Ginger was over rated. I love Asian food and we ate there during ruff seas which detracted from the experience but overall I would have preferred a Hibachi style experience. Our room on level 6 mid ship was superb and I compliment the staff for making sure our room was always refreshed and clean. They worked hard to make our experience a great one. You will love the tranquility beds Oceania puts in their rooms along with the pillow selection. They even sell these beds online if you like them and they are imported from Italy. The entertainment was OK. The Sirena does not have a huge stage and from what I hear the entertainment has improved. Frankly we did not go to the entertainment every night so I might give what we saw a 6.7 rating. Clearly Oceania appeals to a more mature group. We brought our 18 year old son and there was not much for him to do but we knew that booking the ship. The ports of call were the main reason we booked as the offered a fantastic selection. It was nice not having a lot of kids running around so I appreciated the age group of 50 + that they market to. The décor of the ship gives passengers a luxury feel like you are in someone's elegant home. The seating make you feel like you are in a living room. The smaller number of passengers gave a more intimate feel and a chance to meet some really nice people. The cruise excursions are expensive and I found you are much better going to Trip advisor and finding your own to book. We saved probably $2000 doing this and avoided the huge bus loads of other people and had a much more private experience. The nice thing about Oceania is you can bring your own adult beverages on board. Only if you have it served with your meal will the charge a corking fee. The internet service was very good for a cruise. Of course it will not allow you quick speeds for video downloads but it was adequate for email and surfing the net, Overall I was really impressed with the staff on Oceania. Rest Rooms ere maintained constantly throughout the day and were clean.They all were professional, friendly and hard-working. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We chose this cruise because we wanted to go in a less crowded ship. Before, we've sailed in larger ships of about 2500 passengers. We really enjoyed less people aboard, more tranquility. Athens is really a very interesting place ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to go in a less crowded ship. Before, we've sailed in larger ships of about 2500 passengers. We really enjoyed less people aboard, more tranquility. Athens is really a very interesting place to visit, Achropolis is incredible and its musueum. The embarkation and disembarkation process went really smoothly. Is a very nice refurbished ship, with a nice and well distribuited cabin, alll very clean and a very comfortable bed. Dining was superb. The patisserie just delicious. Red Ginger is a must. We were looking for a silent ship and we found it. Shows were good, a very good pianist (with an incredible memory) and the young singers and dancers were also fine. Dedicated service. Fantastic all the ports we visited. We did all the excursions by our own, and we really had a very good time. In five ports we rented a car (Santorini, Katakolon, Corfú, Kotor and Bari). We want to go again next year to other ports in the mediterranean in another similar ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We joined the ship in Istanbul. Embarkation was quick and smooth. Don't expect any kind of welcome in board; no senior staff or welcome drink. The ship is beautiful and the service and house staff really do a great job. Senior ... Read More
We joined the ship in Istanbul. Embarkation was quick and smooth. Don't expect any kind of welcome in board; no senior staff or welcome drink. The ship is beautiful and the service and house staff really do a great job. Senior staff are conspicuous by their absence. For a ship of this size you would expect them to be more visible, but they are not. The food was excellent in all venues. The entertainment was generally ok too, except the "night club". Handing round an iPad for people to choose their own music lead to a haphazard playlist that resulted in a mostly empty dance floor and club. Whilst we had a thoroughly enjoyable cruise, we did have an issue with wine availability. We took out the wine package, but from day 3 certain wines became unavailable. By day 4, they ran out of three of the wines and we struggled to get prosecco in some of the bars. This situation lasted until the penultimate day of the cruise!! We have never been on a cruise where they have run out of wine!! In addition to running out of some of the wines, they also run out of breakfast tea and some cereals?! You really do have to question their back office supply chain process. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
This was our first Oceania cruise, having used Celebrity and Cunard in the past. We booked on the basis of the itinerary (Greek Islands) and the reputation Oceania has of being a solid notch above the mass market cruises. The cruise ... Read More
This was our first Oceania cruise, having used Celebrity and Cunard in the past. We booked on the basis of the itinerary (Greek Islands) and the reputation Oceania has of being a solid notch above the mass market cruises. The cruise originated and ended in Istanbul. Embarkation was easy with a maximum of 15 minutes to drop off the luggage and check-in. Tip - if you are looking for well known Western brand hotels close to the cruise terminal, I would recommend the Grand Hyatt or Intercontinental, both close to Taksim Square and less than 10 minutes by taxi to the ship. Our Penthouse Suite (PH2) cabin was 11005. We were very happy with all aspects of the cabin, particularly with the walk in closet and lots of storage space. Tip - deck 11 forward is a great location. It's behind the bridge so is a dead-end and therefore has no corridor noise. Also deck 12 (pool deck) is wider than 11, that gives more shade/protection to the balconies on 11. Our cabin staff (Christina, Joe and Dean the butler) were excellent, attentive and always smiling. More-over, we would say that all Oceania staff were professional and in particular seemed a very happy bunch! Food/Drink - Oceania pride themselves on cuisine, while we were not at any point dis-appointed, we did not honestly feel the food standard was exceptional. In our view Red Ginger was the best, followed by Toscana, and the Main Dining room. The terrace buffet was perfectly good, but not "sumptuous" by any standard. In our view the Polo Grille Steak/seafood) was the earliest and we did not try the French restaurant as we live in France. Tip - we did not start making reservations in the specialty restaurants until late on the first cruise day, and found difficulty in obtaining good times.....so book early. Tip - my wife does not drink so we did not go with any of the daily beverage packages. Bottled beer prices ($6.50) and good wines by the glass ($10ish) we're reasonable to me. Tip - oceania allows purchased alcohol on board (sadly I only discovered this with 3 days left), and with the mini bar stocked daily with free soft drinks, it made cocktails in the cabin very affordable! Ports of call/excursions - I never understand shore excursion pricing, and we prefer to do our own thing in anycase. All ports of call (both docked and tendered) were close enough to town to not need prior arrangements. Ship facilities/entertainment - Riviera is a well appointed mid size ship, with all the usual ship-board activities on a mid-size, but nothing revolutionary (no climbing wall, simulators etc). Late afternoons on shore excursion days and all day when sailing, the pool areas and seating areas do become busy, but I have never seen a ship where this is not the case. We were pleasantly surprised by the cabin TV movie channels, with recent run films available free of charge. Dis-embarkation - Approx 15 minutes in the passport control queue, but the luggage was waiting for us, and plentiful taxis outside. Again I don't understand the pricing on offer for ground transport by Oceania, that was almost x10 the price of taking a regular taxi? Summary - happy with Oceania, particularly with great staff and excellent cabin. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
The Riviera is truly a magnificent ship, no expense spared in the furnishings and fittings. Everywhere on the ship is excellent, with staterooms beautifully furnished with the most comfortable beds, best quality linens and soft ... Read More
The Riviera is truly a magnificent ship, no expense spared in the furnishings and fittings. Everywhere on the ship is excellent, with staterooms beautifully furnished with the most comfortable beds, best quality linens and soft furnishings. Very soft gently colour schemes, with a very large balcony and comfy chairs, plus cashmere covers for cooler sailings. Staff have been wonderful – nothing is too much to ask for and requests are dealt with promptly and with good grace. Meals have been magnificent, everyone a treat and choice has been all too much. There are 4 speciality restaurants each with their own theme and all should be tried. There is also a Grand Dining Room, beautifully appointed with a la carte meals available. Can’t complain about lobster nearly every day. Never thought I’d be guilty of looking at a menu and asking “What else is there to eat other than bloody lobster”! Breakfast in the Terrace Café is also a treat with one of the best selection of fruits, cereals, all manner of eggs breakfast meats and breads I have ever seen. Staff here are also extremely efficient and helpful. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
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