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Sail Date: July 2019
We enjoyed Oceania on past cruises, especially the specialty restaurants, the smaller ship sizes and the service. Other cruise lines are cheaper, but the crowds are larger and the food is not as good as Oceania. Our cruise was 19 days ... Read More
We enjoyed Oceania on past cruises, especially the specialty restaurants, the smaller ship sizes and the service. Other cruise lines are cheaper, but the crowds are larger and the food is not as good as Oceania. Our cruise was 19 days and covered a number of ports we had previously been to, but we wished to visit Turkey, Israel and Cyprus. Embarkation at Port Piraeus, Athens ran smoothly. It took less than 30 minutes and we were on the ship. We find the ship is always clean in the public areas, the staff are extremely helpful and pleasant and enjoy a bit of banter. We found this time there were a number of passengers travelling with children. Sadly they are unsupervised around the dining areas and like to run up and down the halls during the day. I realise it is not the staffs responsibility to control them, but this can ruin it for others. We used the ship's excursions a couple of times which were quite good. I think next time we will organise our own excursions. It is most frustrating when people wonder off and forget the time, whilst everyone else is waiting at the bus. The onboard entertainment is not something we go to see. The band at the pool were playing a couple of times, and I thought they were pretty useless. Would have been better with just come music playing rather than a band. Disembarkation at Barcelona, Spain was super easy. We walked off the ship and all the bag were waiting downstairs. Plenty of taxis waiting to take departing passengers to hotels, airports etc. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
A few weeks ago, we cruised aboard MS Insignia. It has been several years since we have been on Oceania (due to retirement plans). We were looking forward to two things: The voyage to Cuba and how the line has fared in the years since ... Read More
A few weeks ago, we cruised aboard MS Insignia. It has been several years since we have been on Oceania (due to retirement plans). We were looking forward to two things: The voyage to Cuba and how the line has fared in the years since we last travelled with them. First things first, the trip to Cuba was cancelled. Not Oceania’s fault, as it hit all the cruise lines hard. We had originally booked a low deck porthole cabin for this trip. Once the Cuba trip was cancelled, Oceania came back to us with a very nice package of monies returned AND possible upgrades. We chose an upgrade (which we paid for), to Concierge level. We spent a few days in South Beach, pre cruise, and then boarded Insignia. We were very pleased with the refurb that the ship had just finished. Beautiful and elegant in all aspects of this small ship. This was our 65th cruise and have been on many lines, but must say that the small ship feel was really nice. Our cabin was a nice size with lots of storage space, very nice balcony and great amenities. We spent more time on this balcony than many other ships from our past. The bathrooms are very small; particularly the shower, but we are not large people, so it did not affect us. Our cabin stewards were excellent, exceeding our expectations. Bottled water was placed in our cabin each day and always kept full. Bottled water is filtered aboard ship and replaced each day in your cabin (included). You can walk the entire length of this ship within two-three minutes. We were on Deck seven, so we were always two decks up to the Terrace Café and Pool, or two decks down to the Main Dining Room. There are two shops, a very tiny lobby and several areas to enjoy drinks or relaxation. The library on Deck 10 was a beautiful place to relax and read. The days of libraries like this on most ships are gone. The Show room area was very spacious and was used for several different events during the voyage. This ship has very limited entertainment. A pianist in the evening, along with a quintet of strings. The main show was always at 9:45 p.m., when most of the ship had gone to bed. The entertainment was okay, but we did not go to more than one show. There is also a stunning view lounge on the upper decks with wonderful views of the ocean. The times we went there to enjoy an after dinner drink, it was usually empty! The FOOD is what we were most anxious to try as we had remembered it being outstanding from a previous cruise. We were not disappointed in any of the venues on board. The two specialty restaurants are included in the price, but you only get one shot at each of them (unless you are a Suite guest). Both Toscana and the Polo Grill were outstanding, each in their own way. The quality of the food, presentation and service were all excellent. The Main Dining Room was excellent too, with a wonderfully diverse menu each evening and great service. Very nice wine lists in all outlets also helped. We enjoyed breakfast in the MDR several times, and again, was top notch. The Terrace Café is the buffet. It is not very big, nor is there a large selection. We did feel, however, that the food offered was very nice quality and we enjoyed it. We especially enjoyed the great cheeses each day (which were not the processed goo that you get on most ships). Sitting outside on the ship’s fantail, was really nice, especially in the Caribbean setting. The pool restaurant served very nice sandwiches and grilled items cooked to order. Also, it had a daily fruit and salad bar, along with some of the best ice cream and shakes at sea. Our ports of call were not the reason we stayed with this cruise after Cuba was cancelled. Key West, Roatan, Belize and Costa Maya (which had to be skipped due to high winds) were all okay. We had been to most of them, so we didn’t do any excursions. I could write many pages about this ship, but need to conclude by saying we look forward to travelling with Oceania again in our cruising future. IF you like the small ship experience, you will love this ship!! Thanks again to all members of the crew that made our week go by way too fast! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
For those interested in a comparison, let's look at the differences between Oceania and Princess. We were on the 18-day Dublin-Copenhagen segment. This was our first cruise with Oceania. We are elite with Princess. We chose this ... Read More
For those interested in a comparison, let's look at the differences between Oceania and Princess. We were on the 18-day Dublin-Copenhagen segment. This was our first cruise with Oceania. We are elite with Princess. We chose this cruise because of the itinerary: Norway and northern Russian ports. Oceania has considerably less merchandising pressure. There is no crew of photographers. The crew seems under less pressure to sell extras. There are no "cruise ship art" events. Speciality coffees and sparkling water are available without extra charge. Speciality restaurants are available without extra charge. On the other hand, the cheapest bottle of wine on Oceania is about $10 a bottle more than on Princess. That generally put wine above what I was willing to pay. The ship felt less crowded and there was never a problem finding outdoor seating (although the Northern itinerary may have had something to do with that). 650 passengers instead of thousands does make for a different (and pleasant) experience. Oceania does live up to its reputation for good food. The dining room food was consistently a notch better than Princess. The buffet food was also very good. However, the buffet was typically more crowded than I'm used to on Princess. Our cabin (C1 ocean view) was equivalent to what we'd expect on Princess. Surprisingly, the cabin steward was good, but not as good as is typical on Princess. There were two ship lecturers. We only went to the lectures by one, but she was outstanding (https://cruisethroughhistory.com}. I liked the smaller venue for ship shows, although the noise level (at times 90db or more) was louder than I'd like. Passenger demographics: Oceania is a bit older and fellow passengers are on average wealthier. They also have a tendency to provide lots of details on their previous exotic Oceania cruises. At first that was useful, since we've not been on Oceania before, but enough was enough.... Shore excursions are overpriced. We generally don't book ship excursions, but we took their tours to make life easier for the three Russian ports, and we booked the bird safari at North Cape (a mistake). In Lerwick we hired a cab for the day. I tried to rent a car, but waited too long. I'd recommend planning ahead and getting a car. Even if you feel a bit uncomfortable driving in the UK, traffic on Shetland Island is thin. We walked around Bergen, a lovely port. Instead of the Oceania excursion to Mt. Floyen, we booked in advance on-line (https://www.floyen.no/en). Efficient and lots less money. In Kristiansund, there is a company that takes off from the cruise dock and heads up the local fjord for a lot less than Oceania. The Russian tours were fine, although private packages would have saved money. North Cape was a good tour — but we could have done it for less than half the Oceania price on our own. My advice is to rent a car (there is a company at the pier that will rent a car for 1500 NOK). That would allow both the bird safari and a drive up to North Cape, and save a whole lot of money. Thee is also a public bus, although an expensive one, from the pier to North Cape. The tourist office at the pier has the details. Although the cruise to Flam is spectacular, I can't say I'd recommend the railroad trip — but if you do take it, don't book with Oceania. You can either book on-line in advance or buy a ticket once you get there. Flam itself is a town of about 500 that absorbs thousands of cruise ship passengers, and is entirely uninteresting on its own. Cabs in Copenhagen (Uber withdrew from the city) are readily available at the cruise terminal and will set you back less than the Oceania transfer. In sum, Oceania is about twice the price (or more). If I had a choice between them I'd take Princess assuming identical itineraries. However, Oceania's smaller ships bring one to places Princess doesn't. I wouldn't hesitate to book Oceania again — but only if the itinerary was one that Princess could not match. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Our first Oceania Cruise was on the Marina and we were so “wowed” we booked the Sirena to sail 5 months later. We did not come back from this one overwhelmed with a sense to book the next one ASAP. First, the things that were a ... Read More
Our first Oceania Cruise was on the Marina and we were so “wowed” we booked the Sirena to sail 5 months later. We did not come back from this one overwhelmed with a sense to book the next one ASAP. First, the things that were a little less than fantastic The spa deck was very small and hard to find a seat on some days. So, the concierge upgrade was not really worth the money. The bathrooms were very tiny and, we knew going in it was a smaller ship but, if you are on the toilet with the door closed it was sideways sitting. The room stewards were not as intuitive as to what we needed. For example- on day one we had champagne in a bucket that we didn’t drink on boarding as in it was more fun after sail away. When we came back to the room to drink- the bucket was gone and the champagne on the counter. We had to call to get the bucket back. The buffet restaurant was not quick with water, tea or coffee. Most breakfasts we had to flag someone down to get us more. There was link flexibility in changing restaurant dinner times even with empty tables. The good- heck it is still a fantastic line! The food is fantastic and who doesn’t like grilled lobsters. Honestly, the best food you can have at sea. The main dining room and speciality restaurants had great service. The ship is very clean. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This is my fourth cruise with Oceania. I have been on both the Riviera and the marina. Well both ships are lovely, I have to say that I enjoyed the Riviera the most. I find the ship to be simply beautiful. This service is always so helpful ... Read More
This is my fourth cruise with Oceania. I have been on both the Riviera and the marina. Well both ships are lovely, I have to say that I enjoyed the Riviera the most. I find the ship to be simply beautiful. This service is always so helpful and cheerful. We had a penthouse suite as I was traveling with my father and aunt. The room was clean, well appointed, and had plenty of room. We all had enough space to put away all her clothes. The suitcases fit comfortably under the bed. They would unfold a sofa bed every evening that my dad slept in. I wanted to sleep in it but he insisted that it was more comfortable. The walking closet was large enough to act as a changing room. I am usually out all day on a tour or exploring on my own. I have no real interest in on board activities or entertainment. I found the chamber music group that played in front of the grand dining room and martinis bar to be absolutely delightful. I enjoyed the afternoon tea. However, I notice that they no longer have the pastries and sandwiches set up as self serve. You had to wait to be served with the little cart that goes around. There are some ways I see that the line is cutting back since they have been acquired by Norwegian line. I hope this doesn’t continue. The tea was still delightful. We had our transfers from the airport to our ship and from the ship to our hotel handled through Oceania. This was very efficient and made embarkation and Disembarkation pretty easy. The only trouble was is that there were so many people who had booked the room at the grand Brittania hotel in Athens that they were somewhat overwhelme. Oceania did their best to accommodate us while we waited to be checked in. The only problem I encountered during the cruise was with regard to their policy on booking on board. They provided numerous handouts stating that you could save $600-$1200 if you booked on board depending on the length of the cruise you chose. However that so-called discount only brought the cost down to what was their published prices less $100, you also got 100 on board credit. This is not the $600 to $1200 that The handouts indicated. Also the onboard Oceania ambassador I found to be Unhelpful and disingenuous. It seem that she was more concerned on her commission then in booking us in an appropriate room. Oceania is a great product they do not have to rely on this shady kind of marketing. I find the food to be generally of high-quality on the ship. I do agree that the offerings in the grand dining room tend to be very boring. Also if you expect your steak in the polar grill to be very rare, you have to order it “blue“. If you say rare you will get something like medium rare. I have already booked a Caribbean cruise and a cruise that goes to southeast Asia next year. I feel Oceania is kind of on the cusp here, it is still a very high-quality product, I just hope corporate doesn’t ruin a good thing. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
GOOD - Nice Room with Butler/Concierge service, large bathroom and balcony, 24-hour room service. Main dining room and Toscana had excellent service staff and food was fantastic. Ship was nicely equipped and comfortable, albeit not very ... Read More
GOOD - Nice Room with Butler/Concierge service, large bathroom and balcony, 24-hour room service. Main dining room and Toscana had excellent service staff and food was fantastic. Ship was nicely equipped and comfortable, albeit not very large comparatively. BAD - Captain and officers were completely self-righteous and arrogant, to the point of being rude. The dining personnel in the "Polo Club" were incompetent and utterly unskilled in premier food service. We are not snobs and expect minor glitches in services, etc. However, the Polo Club is a "reservations only" establishment and one cannot simply enter at their leisure. The cruise was labeled "Gaelic Glory", but there was no glory about it. The theme was advertised as "Irish", but there wasn't an inkling of Irish theme aboard ship...no Irish food, music, or adornments...??? The entertainment was reminiscent of a theme park, with less than stellar performances. Shore excursions were offered by the cruise line at exorbitant prices, usually 3-4 times the amount charged by local companies at each port-of-call. If you did not book an excursion through the cruise line, you were not allowed to disembark the ship until all of those who purchased cruise line excursion packages had departed. This usually meant waiting 1-2 hours after arriving in port. The crew was extremely vigilant in enforcing this measure, to point of acting "Gestapo" like...very discourteous and unnecessary. I could list many more negative aspects about the cruise, but I think you get the picture. Overall...VERY DISAPPOINTED...!!! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Having sailed on sister ship Riviera in 2018 we were confident in what to expect on Marina. Excellent service, wonderful ports and great food and spirits. Marina did not disappoint. The ship is small enough that you can easily move ... Read More
Having sailed on sister ship Riviera in 2018 we were confident in what to expect on Marina. Excellent service, wonderful ports and great food and spirits. Marina did not disappoint. The ship is small enough that you can easily move around, yet large enough to have multiple entertainment and dining options. My wife likes the shows, I enjoy making an evening contribution to the casino. It is nice that they still have a craps table. Many ships have done away with them. We enjoyed the specialty restaurants and Le Reserve. The main dining room is beautiful, we really enjoyed a peaceful breakfast in the MDR. The buffet option can be crowded. We embarked in Denmark visiting; Estonia, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia and disembarked in Sweden. St. Petersburg was fantastic. We hired a private guide and driver through TJ travel. Excellent choice. Slatvana Andrusheko, was encyclopedic in her knowledge of Russia. In another life she was a Russian History professor. It really made the trip extraordinary. We had her and the driver for 2 full days. It is a big plus having a driver ready to pick you up to take you on to the next site. Plus they have already acquired all entry passes to the venues you must see. She took us to local restaurants and markets. We got a real feel for St. Petersburg. Our first port, Warnemunde, Germany was a real surprise. Very nice summer vacation spot with a real small town appeal. Take the train to Rostock if you are inclined, very easy trip. We rented a car on the Island of Bornholm, Denmark. A very nice day drive. In many of the ports, we just jumped on the Hop-On - Hop Off bus for a great city tour. Helsinki was really a highlight too. Our cabin was spacious and very accommodating. No complaints about the food or drinks. We do purchase a drink package and find it to be a good value. We didn't book any of our tours with the ship, we found better value doing it privately. We are also a bit more adventurous and enjoy hunting out different sights. The only "negative" we found on the ship was my wife wanted to participate in the on-board art class, but this ship had more children on then usual and they were crowding the art class. Not a big deal. We do enjoy Oceania because it is primarily all adults. We love children, but we don't miss the screaming, crying and running. The literature and website is quite clear in this is primarily adults. No climbing walls, no slides, no big screen TV, no Mickey and Minnie. As a grandparent, we have taken our grandchildren on cruises, but more age appropriate lines. All in all, Oceania met our expectations. We put a deposit down on another cruise in 2020. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
After reading a review posted here, I want to post my own review of this same cruise. On our 8th Oceania cruise, our second on Nautica, this cruise was one of our best cruises for the total ship experience with the additional charm of the ... Read More
After reading a review posted here, I want to post my own review of this same cruise. On our 8th Oceania cruise, our second on Nautica, this cruise was one of our best cruises for the total ship experience with the additional charm of the Irish ports of call. If I get obvious out of the way, Nautica is way overdue for an interior refit. In no way did the condition of the ship detract from our onboard experience. If I compare our Nautica experience with our cruise to Cuba on Sirena, this cruise better organized, and, the crew had a better focus on the total customer experience. The food service, the quality in Polo, Toscana and the GDR was very good, at times our dishes were the best we have ever had on an Oceania cruise. It’s true that ship excursions board tenders before independent travelers. We booked all of our excursions with our Cruise Critic members on our Roll Call board. At no time did we find that this delay was a problem on this cruise. Yes, the Oceania excursion product is way overpriced. Oceania needs to do better in this regard. We prefer the Oceanis cruise product, and, we have booked another cruise for next year. I believe the Nautica is one of Oceania’s best ships for the overall management and for the total cruise experience for the passenger. Once the refit is complete, I expect the Nautica will continue as a top choice for Oceania travelers old and new. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
I had chosen Oceania because of their highly rated cuisine. This cruise did not disappoint. We are first time cruisers with this line and this itinerary. From start to finish...the room, the wait staff, the cuisine, the excursions, the ... Read More
I had chosen Oceania because of their highly rated cuisine. This cruise did not disappoint. We are first time cruisers with this line and this itinerary. From start to finish...the room, the wait staff, the cuisine, the excursions, the overall atmosphere of understated elegance. So many places to sit and enjoy the cruise life and even dealing with the nitty gritty (laundrettes on each floor were very popular). We dined in each specialty restaurant...Red Ginger, Polo Grill, Toscana and Jacques. Each offered interesting choices and were true to the cuisine of the culture. And as always, you felt like royalty. A sweet bonus (and veddy proper) was tea at 4pm. Choices of teas, sandwiches and scrumptious desserts kept you sated until dinner. The show was very entertaining combining actual entertainers and on screen clips of Broadway shows and stars. I even noticed the artwork on each floor was beautifully done. Excursions were just the right length of time, with great tour guides. The longest day was Florence and Pisa and you do need more time to cover those areas. Embarkation and Disembarking was efficient and quick.It was wonderful and I am looking forward to another Oceania cruise. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
It covered 9 ports in Spain alone. And had a terrific small as well as larger ports. We did not use the cruise line’s tours but booked thru Spain Day Tours which were really terrific and we’re less costly than the ships’. The ... Read More
It covered 9 ports in Spain alone. And had a terrific small as well as larger ports. We did not use the cruise line’s tours but booked thru Spain Day Tours which were really terrific and we’re less costly than the ships’. The food was excellent and except for Red Ginger (where the service and food was not great) all the other venues were top notch. Embarkation and disembarkation were very smooth and fast. The shops cleanlines was exemplary. The crew always had a smile and always greeted you. They were all wonderful. We visited Barcelona, Valencia, Alicante, Cadiz (Seville), Almeria, Cartagena, Ibiza, Palma de Mallorca and Palamós. The specialty restaurants: Polo grill was very good, Jacques was also very good, Toscana was also excellent. The buffet grill was out of this world with its tremendous variety of selections. Room service was very quick and superb. The concierge lounge on the 9th floor was a disappointment as the snack selection was pitiful. Overall the cruise was excellent and good value for its cost. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We were booked in a concierge level cabin and it was kind of a disappointment. The bathroom was quite small and was tight on storage. Our cabin steward was not the friendliest and hardly spoke to us. The only benefit we had of the ... Read More
We were booked in a concierge level cabin and it was kind of a disappointment. The bathroom was quite small and was tight on storage. Our cabin steward was not the friendliest and hardly spoke to us. The only benefit we had of the concierge level was the use of laundry facilities. Internet was sketchy much of the time and we had even purchased a $299 internet package. We found a lot of the staff to be not always considerate of the passengers - frequently we had them walk across right in front of us, without as much as an excuse me. Breakfast and lunch were like on any cruise we’ve been on and dinners were very good, especially in the speciality restaurants. The Grand dining room was also good, but some nights the menu was hard to find something appealing. We did shore excursions in every port and most were very good. A couple of them made us very aware that the guide can make or break a tour. Sometimes the departures seemed a bit unorganized. Overall the ship seemed a bit tired and could use some updating. The passengers overall weren’t as friendly as on other cruises. The alcohol packages were ridiculously expensive. A cooking class was a highlight of the cruise. Our disembarkation experience was less than stellar. We left the ship with our assigned group and when we went to get our luggage, one piece was missing. We asked for help and they didn’t seem to know what to do. After a frantic 45 minutes of looking a lady came in with the luggage that she had taken without verifying that it was hers. It seems like there could be some way to prevent this from happening. Overall, I doubt we sail with Oceania again. For the money we had a much, much better experience with Viking Ocean. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My room was in bad need of repairs, which should have been done, before I stepped aboard. I had to spend the first 3 days, asking for repairs. This was a concierge room. The lunch was only open until 2pm, and if you left to go ashore ... Read More
My room was in bad need of repairs, which should have been done, before I stepped aboard. I had to spend the first 3 days, asking for repairs. This was a concierge room. The lunch was only open until 2pm, and if you left to go ashore , you returned to only a grill by the pool. Food should be supplied to everyone especially lunch on a fancy cruise. the ice cream closed at 4pm for the day. Who doesn't want ice cream at night. The shows were mediocre at best. Not professional , like on a big cruise. The food was just ok. the excursions were not planned well, and we barely got water upon returning from each excursion. The customer service desk, was not very helpful, and the excursion desk was always closed, so you couldn't ask questions. This was not worth the money, and I paid a fortune. I asked for a partial refund and was denied. I can go on and on with many other issues on this boat. It was not well prepared for guests, and not customer friendly. I did like the spa, although the changing room was not kept up , and was always flooded and dirty. Nothing to ever do at night. No disco, no nothing. Read Less
51 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
NEVER AGAIN!! Completed a segment of the Oceania Around the World 2019 cruise. Treated like a second class citizen by ATW Travelers who were given special privileges while the rest of us treated as if we did not belong despite the ... Read More
NEVER AGAIN!! Completed a segment of the Oceania Around the World 2019 cruise. Treated like a second class citizen by ATW Travelers who were given special privileges while the rest of us treated as if we did not belong despite the dollars paid being very high.(The ATW cruisers made up nearly 3/4 of the cruisers onboard) . Atmosphere onboard - us and them - it was dreadful. Crew extremely nervous of upsetting any ATW cruisers. Specialty restaurants completely empty by 9pm - no atmosphere with most ATW cruisers in bed by this time. Menus at Oceania Toscana restaurant not overhauled in 14 years. Food offering very “yesterday” very heavy. ATW given priority for all sittings at specialty restaurants before 8pm. Constantly asked by other cruisers and crew if we were “Seggies” the name given by ATW cruisers to the perceived “second class” i.e.those who were NOT on the ATW Cruise. Made very clear we should - stick together and not bother the ATW’s. At least there were many wonderful “Seggies” but all of us felt we were treated - differently -in all aspects of the day to day cruise life compared to our past crushing experiences. Shore excursions were outrageously overpriced and slow. Those with permanent injury and unable to walk unaided, taking excursions they could not complete without assistance. Ship encouraged it -simply money making. Entertainment onboard was very ordinary and if there were acts that invoked fun they were quickly told off by the ATW travelers via the Crusie Director making most entertainment bland and boring compared to other luxury cruises we have experienced. MOST DISGUSTING OF ALL was witnessing the BAD BEHAVIORS of grown Women to each other and the crew over OF ALL THINGS - NEEDLEPOINT. Crowd control became necessary after physical fighting and crying broke out over not getting their desired Needlepoint pattern. Ship made daily announcements about the need to obey security at the morning Needlepoint distribution. Very large groups of ATW women joining together- physically fighting, lying, pushing and shoving to gain advantage over others. Ongoing ridiculous abhorrent behavior that would seem funny BUT it was ugly to watch and unfortunately very TRUE!!! We also sadly paid handsomely for the privilege to witness this - ship could not control them. Clothes were stolen out of ships dryers and worn by other ATW passengers and when challenged they answered “ prove it’s yours “. ATW cruisers organized their own exclusive sessions onboard for various things taking over the use of public space and telling Seggies they must leave the area. Crew would tell us to move or the ATW people would make their lives hard. Yoga sessions were conducted by a passenger who was NOT a trained, sanctioned employee of Oceania. She and her ATW students demanded and were given exclusive use of the gym while not allowing Seggies to attend their sessions or access portion of the gyms common area during her sessions. Again we were told not to question it - they had priority. The list goes on -It was absolutely horrible !! More like traveling with a very self indulged group of Aged Care Retirement people. Never again!!. This was NOT - repeat NOT - a Luxury Cruise it was the Cruise from HELL! Travel on a segment of any ATW cruise with Oceania at your own risk. If you still have life in you and you wish to enjoy your hard earned vacation dollars in a good environment explore other cruise options. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We are a “retired” couple in our late 60s (most passengers were in their 60s/70s) with more than 30 cruises with different lines (Windstar, Azamara, Celebrity, Princess, Star Clippers, Norwegian, and a couple more) ; however, this was ... Read More
We are a “retired” couple in our late 60s (most passengers were in their 60s/70s) with more than 30 cruises with different lines (Windstar, Azamara, Celebrity, Princess, Star Clippers, Norwegian, and a couple more) ; however, this was our first on Oceania. Of note, there were more than a handful of children but no children’s programs. We don’t imbibe much and don’t purchase drink packages, nor do we drink wine. These would be extra charges without the O’Life package which we did not choose (booked cruise only). We upgraded to a concierge level stateroom 10 days before sailing but failed to utilize the amenities included at that level much. The sailing’s 15-day itinerary was Barcelona (overnight), Valencia, Palma de Majorca, and Palamos (Spain), Toulon (France), Monaco (overnight); Antibes (France), La Spezia (for Cinque Terre Italy), Ajaccio (Corsica), Livorrno (for Florence/Tuscany), Sorrento/Capri, Amalfi/Positano, and disembarkation at Civitavecchia (for Rome), Italy. It did not have, any sea days We booked our own air and the cruise line’s transfer from the airport (would recommend finding other transfer or a taxi as it would have been about half-price). Booked a shared van transfer for disembarkation to the airport. We arrived before 9 am, but needed to wait for other flight arrivals before being transferred to the ship. Embarkation was not available until noon ; however, concierge level access to stateroom was at 1 pm. Embarkation was smooth except for the carryon items being scanned through security taking awhile due to the quantity of new passengers arriving about the same time. Buffet lunch was available immediately. Oceania’s policy in the Terrace Café (buffet) for breakfast and lunch is that all food is served by their staff. You cannot serve yourself even a roll. There is outdoor seating there. While dinner is also available there, we eat in the dining room or at a specialty restaurant for all dinners. Specialty restaurants are by reservation only and the main dining room is available 6:30-9:30 (anytime dining). There are four specialty restaurants where only one reservation per is available to book online prior to sailing. Additional dinners in these specialty dining rooms are available to book the day of your choice of additional dining there. Early times were hard to come by; the menu was always the same in each restaurant , but the menu options varied greatly in each. Jacques served French food, Red Ginger Asian, Tuscana Italian, and Polo Grill was a Steakhouse mainly. Food was good in all; however, we felt for a luxury line touted as a superb culinary experience, it wasn’t much above average to the lines we sailed, and not superb. The Grand Dining Room did offer more of a variety than most lines’ MDR. Stateroom – Concierge room was the same as a regular veranda with a king bed (282 sq. ft including balcony), loveseat and table, desk area, and plenty of closet space and drawers The marble bathroom with plenty of storage around the sink area (plus two shelves next to the toilet) was slightly larger than most premium/luxury lines as it had a separate tub with shower head and a regular shower with glass door (albeit small). The mini-bar with soda, bottled sparkling water, and other mixers is restocked daily if you ask the room steward to keep your favorites in there, You can remove those furnished that you don’t use. The line has converted to a glass container of water which is refilled as needed. When going ashore, bottled water in plastic containers is available when disembarking. Concierge class has a key-entry lounge available 24/7 with snacks, coffee and other beverages. We had room service for breakfast twice when we had early tours which came with a tablecloth en suite. Four suite categories are available with butlers. Public rooms – Public rooms were a generous size and furnished nicely as expected on a luxury line. The ship’s singers/dancers were excellent , the caliber of a Broadway show in NYC. Some of the other entertainment was not as good, especially the magicians. The pool deck was of sufficient size with padded lounge chairs and cotton coverings. Horizons Bar at the top of the ship had good entertainment by a trio who sang a variety of musical genre; and a string quartet who played nightly in another lounge area outside the Grand Dining Room. There was table-tennis and shuffleboard, as well as putt-putt golf. The spa and fitness center were large and my massage was very good. The Sanctuary area was available to Concierge level and above guests. Casino was small and on board shopping was as expected for a luxury line. Shore Excursions – Since my husband is lacking in physical mobility (not good on hills or uneven pavement and unable to stand or walk for extended time periods), we elected to purchase 7 ship excursions in advance as there was a special 20% discount for that quantity. Overall we were disappointed in those; although they were rated correctly for difficulty, IMHO they lacked good content. This is a very subjective topic, so maybe others enjoyed them We also took a few independent excursions arranged by cruise critic roll call members and as one would expect, they were better. Service – We found the service to be good, but no staff went above and beyond IMO and the room steward was lacking a bit, in our opinion. Ports of call – We were disappointed with a few, but it may have been we were unhappy with the excursion which tainted our opinion. Much of Italy we had previously visited and were excited to return to, as well as Monaco which we felt didn’t need the overnight, although one could take an excursion out of town to utilize the extra time there. Would we choose Oceania again? Probably not as we felt they didn’t meet our expectations which were high for the culinary and luxury aspects of the line. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
This was our first Oceania Cruise. We chose this ship for the itinerary. This ship is the smallest I have ever sailed on and at first I was a bit concerned but I found it to be a wonderful ship. It is a bit worn but it is being updated ... Read More
This was our first Oceania Cruise. We chose this ship for the itinerary. This ship is the smallest I have ever sailed on and at first I was a bit concerned but I found it to be a wonderful ship. It is a bit worn but it is being updated soon. The staff is excellent. They knew our names after a few days. Service was great. Food was wonderful. Our favorite was Tuscano. This was a 21 day cruise and we did have quite a few sea days. Loved them. There were plenty of activities for us. We were with another couple and played a lot of cards. Our cabin was concierge level and this gave us free wifi for one item but we learned how to use multiple phones/ipads without too much trouble. We didn't do a lot of the entertainment in the evening but the ship's crew were very good the little we did see. We did use the casino, however not many people seem to enjoy the gaming. Did not really enjoy our cruise director but that is just a personal point. Our ports were fabulous. We booked all private tours so can not speak to the ship's excursions. It is an older crowd and there were no children on board. We met some very lovely people on this cruise. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
As repeat Regent users we thought we’d give a try to its sister company, understanding that given the larger size of Oceania vessels we would have a somewhat different experience. We had heard that the food and beverage in particular was ... Read More
As repeat Regent users we thought we’d give a try to its sister company, understanding that given the larger size of Oceania vessels we would have a somewhat different experience. We had heard that the food and beverage in particular was considered superior to Regent’s. Most emphatically that is not the case. Oceania’s larger variety does not mean better quality offerings and definitely not better service. With the exception of Toscana and Jacques, meals throughout were average. With the exception of the Illy Baristas coffee bar, the quality of coffee elsewhere is remarkably uneven and poor. Overall, the sincere, uniform warmth and attentiveness ever present in Regent’s staff is glaringly absent here. And while this is not to say that Riviera’s service is poor, it can best be described as 4-star vs the Regent’s consistent 5 stars. The experience for independent cruisers is diminished by the proliferation of groups on board Riviera. Will stay with Regent or Crystal after this failed experiment with Oceania. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We chose this cruise because of the luxurious rooms and service, and the smaller number of people on board. We were very pleased with the service and accommodations, the food was superb in every restaurant, and the amenities such as spa, ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the luxurious rooms and service, and the smaller number of people on board. We were very pleased with the service and accommodations, the food was superb in every restaurant, and the amenities such as spa, exercise room, butler service, etc was exceptional. We couldn’t ask for a better ship and crew. Our butler was extremely knowledgeable and helpful to us. All of the staff on the ship were very accommodating and pleasant at all times. We really felt like they were genuine in their actions. We took a cooking class and had a lot of fun learning how to cook Mediterranean food. The restaurants were exceptional and all gave a top class experience from the wait staff, food, wine, etc. the travel overnight to the next port was a great way to move from port to port each day. The embarking to port was easy and usually close to town for walking or catching a taxi. The tours were well planned and easy to access. A few shorter tours at each port (2-3 hours) would have been helpful to add to the tour options. Overall the cruise was exceptional and I will consider other cruises on Oceania! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
Husband's Big 80 birthday - chose Oceania as previous experience on Riviera was very good. Love our food. Very nice itinerary, so we thought, out of Southampton finishing up in Barcelona. Ship - very similar to Riviera. ... Read More
Husband's Big 80 birthday - chose Oceania as previous experience on Riviera was very good. Love our food. Very nice itinerary, so we thought, out of Southampton finishing up in Barcelona. Ship - very similar to Riviera. Beautifully decorated and spotlessly clean. We had Penthouse Suite which was excellent. Very good design. Everything worked except WiFi which was dreadful and you could only have one device working (if it did!) at any one time. Cabin staff were excellent - always cleaned and ready for when we returned. Butler was helpful but we don't really use the Butler. Concierge was awful, rude, arrogant, ignorant both to me and about other guests. Overall the food was good as you would expect from the Cruise line that advertises "The best food at sea..." However........service was slow and seemed disorganised in the Grand Dining Room, the buffet area you had to have everything served to you, often not what you really wanted, which slowed down the process. Often plates were taken away before you finished your last mouthful which I hate! It was over busy at times - I think because the Grand Dining Room was certainly not up to standard. When we did go to the GDR for breakfast there were issues. The worst kipper and smoked haddock I have ever seen - so awful we walked out! Speciality restaurants were good but we were not keen on the Italian Restaurant. Polo Grill, Red Ginger and the French restaurant were all good. There was little coordination between the booking systems and the actual restaurants. Wine was very expensive. The added on gratuities plus another Spanish tax made it a ridiculous price. Entertainment was mixed - some excellent and some awful. Art loft..... well I've never seen such awful examples of a tutors work. The sessions were ok but overcrowded and chaotic. The Culinary Centre was good. Fun and informative . The Special Dining in Prive was an experience, interesting and the food delicious. There were some booking issues for other guests though - they were not happy! Gym was good, classes limited. Front Spa area not serviced, loungers uncomfortable, jacuzzi far too hot on one occasion and outside shower not working. Ports were very interesting - we do not do Ships excursions as we prefer to be independent. Transfers to the ship however were poor in a number of the ports and trying to get accurate info difficult. This did cause us issues as often long waits for buses without any seated waiting areas - my husband cannot stand for long. Some very long unnecessary walks off the ship into the port - little consideration for anyone with any disability. Other Cruise lines seem to have far better in port service. We had a number of Public Holiday days in ports which meant access to attractions was limited and shops closed. The 2 nights in Bordeaux was not 2 nights as they moved the ship on the second day making any independent excursions very difficult especially as it was a public holiday. We saw the Captain once during the whole cruise. He did not attend his drinks party nor did he attend the Thank you parade for the staff. Poor! Would we travel with Oceania again?. Sadly I very much doubt it. I think if we go 6 star again we will try another company. The rudeness of the Concierge was unacceptable. Oh and they got our final account wrong... so beware - we have never had that on a cruise before they are normally spot on! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This was to be the cruise of a lifetime. A chance for my wife to visit some of the many places I had visited while on business travel. Titled by Oceania “Museums to Mosaics” We called it the “Cruise from Hell” along with some ... Read More
This was to be the cruise of a lifetime. A chance for my wife to visit some of the many places I had visited while on business travel. Titled by Oceania “Museums to Mosaics” We called it the “Cruise from Hell” along with some other long time (29 Oceania cruises) cruisers. Things stated going downhill at our second port – Halifax. It was very cold and started snowing as were leaving the port. The next morning there was over a foot of snow on the swimming pool and deck. Many of the crew members had never seen snow and found it fascinating. The visit to St Johns, Newfoundland was canceled due to stormy weather. My wife had lived in Newfoundland 50 years ago and was anxious to see how it had changed over the years. All in all it was a very disappointing start to the cruise. Crossing the Atlantic in the heavy seas for five days did get many people quite queasy, which led to distributing barf bags by the elevators. It was rough enough that safety belts for the beds would have been appreciated. People had to hold on to the railings and walls to go along the corridors to keep from falling. When we arrived in Cork, Ireland the wind was very strong with sideways rain and very cold. Fortunately the Jameson Distillery tour was indoors. The visit to Dublin for the next day was canceled due to heavy seas and gale force winds so we spent the day in our cabin in Cork. The next disappointment was arriving in London/South Hampton on Good Friday. I had really wanted my wife to at least have a brief visit in London. This meant there was to be no visit after planning on it for a year and half (since we had booked the trip). We were not informed of the no London tours until I asked the Destination Services manager when we were going to be able to select them on the cruise. We had asked out travel agent prior to the trip when we were going to be able to schedule a London tour (like all the others we preselected) but were told we had to wait until we got on the ship. Then we then proceeded to visit Bordeaux on Easter Monday, which is a celebrated holiday in France, with practically everything closed. The next stop in Biarritz was canceled due to heavy seas in the Bay of Biscay (that precluded using tenders to disembark). I guess Oceania is not aware that the Bay of Biscay is notorious for rough seas. The last straw was visiting Malaga on May Day, May 1st – another holiday with the shops closed. The tour was supposed to be easy – the guide had very poor English skills and appeared to be trying out for the Olympic speed walking team. My wife had to sit down and wait for the tour to return with no available free rest rooms. To Summarize: Cruise Length 28 days Sea days 8 scheduled (11 total) Missed ports 3 total Stop not available due holiday 1 (London) Ports limited due to holiday 3 I understand that Oceania does not control the weather. However, they do control the scheduling. In previous years the “repositioning cruise” had been scheduled in May. If the cruise had been scheduled just a week later, Good Friday would have been at sea, Easter would have been in Cork and London would have been available for a visit. I had expected that Oceania would take holidays into account when scheduling trips and try to optimize passenger enjoyment. I guess I was wrong. The message this sends is that passenger satisfaction is a sorry second to revenue maximization. Oceania does many things quite well. The food is good albeit somewhat uneven in the specialty restaurants. The desserts in the Grand dining Room are superb and the crew members we interacted with were well trained, friendly and courteous. The entertainment was much better than previous cruises and the comedian (Martin Beaumont) was terrific in both his shows. We paid over $30,000 for what we consider a $15,000 cruise at best. I had hoped Oceania would have reached out to people who had done the 28 day cruise but after 2 ½ weeks we have heard nothing from Oceania. Never again do we plan cruising on Oceania or any of its’ related lines. Postscript: We did complain to Oceania thru our travel agent and received a very disappointing self serving reply offering a $600 total ship credit on another cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This was our first Oceania Cruise. Past cruises with Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Disney. I did a lot of research. We decided on the cruise because we have wanted to visit Ireland (this cruise docked on Cohn and Dublin) and the ... Read More
This was our first Oceania Cruise. Past cruises with Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Disney. I did a lot of research. We decided on the cruise because we have wanted to visit Ireland (this cruise docked on Cohn and Dublin) and the transatlantic crossing intrigued us. We arrived early; at the dock 11:30 am. Embarkation in Manhattan was very easy, quick. We were on the ship in 10 minutes. A group of 6 adults, we headed to the Terrace Cafe for lunch which, though very crowded, fed us well. While at lunch, they announced our cabins were ready. We traveled Concierge level A3. Our cabin was spacious, spotless. Our luggage had been delivered. We quickly unpacked and set off to explore the ship. The fact that the ship was on the smaller side attracted us as well. It was easy to navigate. We saw the spa, met the artist in residence, saw the teaching kitchen. Muster drill was ...a muster drill. Dinner that night was at Toscana. While at lunch we were approached with an open reservation so we took it. It was delicious. So let’s just get the food out of the way. Dinner at all the restaurants was delicious, including the main dining room. We ate at Toscana twice, at Jacques twice, and at Pollo once. We passed on Red Ginger even though it was most highly rated, most of our group were not fond of Asian food. The rest of the cruise we ate in the Grande Dining room for dinner, many lunches and a few breakfasts. And this is Cruise was the only Cruise we actually had dinner at the buffet. And it was enjoyable. We also enjoyed the afternoon tea. Their service from stateroom attendants to all servers, bar service, every employee we had contact with, was excellent. The entertainment with 1 exception was adequate. The exception, Chuck Wagner was excellent. Now the reason for the title. Even with all the preparation and research, the weather had a severe effect on this cruise. Weather in Canadian ports was forecasted to be normally high 49s low 50s. It snowed in Halifax, so our stop in Newfoundland was cancelled. Snow accumulated on the decks and verandahs. 6 or more inches as well as deeper drifts. Access to the open decks was prohibited, though I do not know why you would want to go out anyway. Five straight sea days followed of rocking, crashing waves and rolling. We truly missed having access to an indoor pool on the ship. We grew tired of the movies. There were enrichment talks, usually 2 per day at 50 min. each, trivia but by sea day 4 we couldn’t wait for a port. Our day in Cobh, home of Blarney Castle was cold and rainy. We enjoyed our excursion but for the first 1/2 hour the windows were so steamed on our bus we could see nothing out of them. Wiping just gave us brief glimpses before they steamed up again. When we got back on board, we were informed that the weather was too bad and our Dublin stop was cancelled. We stayed in Cobh an additional night. The next day the weather was still so bad, it made walking into the small city undoable. We did enjoy the museum on Irish immigration and the Lusitania and Titanic in the welcome center 10E each and the small but well supplied shop as well. When we finally continued on our journey, the captain and crew were finally able to get us out of the rolling, rocking seas and we made the last two scheduled port stops, in Saint-Malo and Le Harve. We enjoyed the warm spring weather there and on our last sea day. We were content with our excursions. One aside, now that I’ve had the experience. We had never been to Paris and after discussion and research did decide to do the one day excursion from Le Harve into Paris through the cruise line, though it was pricey. It is 6 hours (3 to, 3 back) travel, another hour plus ride around the city to see the main sights, 1.5 hours on your own (20 min searching for a toilette) and 15 min photo op at the Effiel Tower. My opinion now...not worth it. Do something closer to Le Harve. On the whole, it was less than expected experience. Are we glad we went? Yes. We enjoyed much of the cruise. Had we been on RC or another line with a ship with more to do, the sea days would have been more easy to get through. If we were with our children and grandchildren, this is not the line we would have chosen. We knew that when we booked. On the up side, we can plan a British Isles-Ireland Cruise with the kids. Debarkation was a mess due the the face to face with British immigration and having to collect our passports before leaving the ship. We waited in lines that at times had no end. Seriously. No one knew where the end of the line was and the crew was not able to help the situation. Still they were pleasant with hundreds of seniors many of whom were acting like toddlers at Disney. We were in line with a gentleman who had an excursion at 8:30 am. It was 7:45 am. We did not get to the passport station until 9:15. I hope they held his tour. I don’t know who is to blame for that mess. We had a pleasant bus ride to the airport. All the air arrangements were made through Oceania and it was as pleasant as a day spent at Heathrow and an 8 hour transatlantic flight could be. Same movies as onboard. Some things you just can’t control. Read Less
23 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Just returned from the Tokyo to Singapore (25day)segment of the World Cruise on Insignia. (We were not advised at time of booking with Oceania that we were joining a world cruise)Spent a lot of money on this trip and have never had such a ... Read More
Just returned from the Tokyo to Singapore (25day)segment of the World Cruise on Insignia. (We were not advised at time of booking with Oceania that we were joining a world cruise)Spent a lot of money on this trip and have never had such a bad experience on Oceania. We were not aware we were joining aprox 360 world cruisers (w.c’s.) but found out right away that cliques had already been established and it was almost impossible to penetrate the barrier between the segment guests and the w.c’s. Getting a large table for dinner was near impossible (never experienced that). Several events were organized for the w.c’s (special events and private parties)while the rest of the segment guests were left behind with little and sometimes no entertainment at all. We also realized the segment guests were paying US$100 pp.pd more than the wc’s we assume to subsidize the world cruise. Never been on an Oceania Cruise where there were NO extra activities. Especially on sea days. It was the usual bag o beans, trivia, mini putt and table tennis. It was sooo... boring. We made our displeasure known to the concierge on two occasions and promises were made that our concerns would be escalated but of course we heard nothing. We have sailed many times with Oceania but won’t will be sailing with them again. Perhaps the new owners (NCL) are making their presence known. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I would like to highlight the positives first for this trip on Marina, from Lima to NYC. I am gluten-free. I told Roger, the Specialty Diet Coordinator that I pick cruises based on food and desserts. He introduced me to Pastry Chef ... Read More
I would like to highlight the positives first for this trip on Marina, from Lima to NYC. I am gluten-free. I told Roger, the Specialty Diet Coordinator that I pick cruises based on food and desserts. He introduced me to Pastry Chef Bruno, who then made sure I got a different dessert every day, to my liking. Everyone one of them was an art of work. Felt very pampered. The Terrace Cafe chef Viktor was also super nice and patient. He walked me through the food, and made me special dishes when asked. Yes, I am looking for Marina future cruises, see if I can enjoy the service of those 3 again. On a whole. (1) They seem to have centralized the operation so one gets same stuff in the Cafe and the Main Dining Room. A lot of people now prefer the Cafe (more choices, less time). (2) They changed some of the Specialty Restaurants’ menu. Red Ginger used to be the draw to sail on Marina. Now Favorite dishes are gone. The same with Jacques. No more incentive. (3) Wave Grill is still a major draw! Ate their food a lot. Very nice and accommodating staff. Deeno, who cleaned our room, was super too. Did everything we asked for, even chasing down our missing survey last minute. Now, he knew how to use persuasion and gentle touch. We stayed in a Concierge Veranda. No butler service, only gave us access to the Lounge. Concierge service was only available 8am-12, 4-8 pm, when we were mostly out or having dinner. How about longer hours? “The Concierge got to sleep some time!” was the answer. For a company bragging about service, that is down right bad. Add another person is my answer. As usual, the lectures were great! Loved those on Panama Canal. Oceania was known for their land tours, nice sites, classy, buses only 60-70% full, etc. But on this cruise, not sure if it was because the towns were just developing their tourism, or because of security concerns, some of the tours were down right terrible or lame. Cancelling Norfolk due to weather was really disappointing too. The Destination Staff, instead of being apologetic and accommodating, were pretty defensive in their attitudes. The sanitation lock down did not help either. Some of the staff members were down right hostile as though we brought them the disaster. Highly recommend that the management teach their staff how to gain the passengers’ cooperation with persuasion rather than enforcement. That is, if the Management knows how themselves. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
The ship was beautiful and well maintained. The pool deck furniture was a little tired, particularly in the spa area, but that's a nit pick. Otherwise, the Riviera is a beautiful ship! The crew, almost to a person, was ... Read More
The ship was beautiful and well maintained. The pool deck furniture was a little tired, particularly in the spa area, but that's a nit pick. Otherwise, the Riviera is a beautiful ship! The crew, almost to a person, was friendly, outgoing, and helpful. This cruise, for us, was for relaxation and to get away from the cold weather up north. We did not participate in any of the ships excursions so we can't evaluate them. Due to "strong winds" we had to skip the stop in Belize. So instead , we spent the day cruising around the Gulf of Mexico. The on-board entertainment, particularly the evening shows in the theater ("lounge"), was as expected. Not to the same level or quality that we have enjoyed on Celebrity or Princess but not bad. The comedians and magicians were very good. It was nice to be on this size ship. No problem getting a deck chair, no waiting in line to embark or dis-embark, no problem finding a table in the "buffet". But, "buffet" probably isn't the best way to describe this venue. Yes, you do go to various counters to pick what you would like to eat but the staff plates it for you, no 500 hands on each serving utensil. At the grill you can order rib-eye, lobster tail, LARGE shrimp, lamb chops, etc. What surprised me was the standard question, "how many lobster would you like?". In any case, the food was excellent. Not perfect, but I don't know how Oceania could have catered to the varied tastes of 1250 passengers in a better way. All the specialty restaurants, particularly the Polo Grill and Toscano, were excellent. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose the cruise for its itinerary. We wanted to got to French Polynesia and had never cruised across the South Pacific with such exotic locations as the Pitcarin Islands and Easter Island. The flight over allowed us to visit one ... Read More
We chose the cruise for its itinerary. We wanted to got to French Polynesia and had never cruised across the South Pacific with such exotic locations as the Pitcarin Islands and Easter Island. The flight over allowed us to visit one daughter & family in California out the way over and ended in New York where a second daughter lives. A bonus was a scheduled stop in Norfolk with even more family. Past cruises have shown us that Oceania really takes great care of its guests in the top suites. We were booked in a penthouse but wanted an Oceania Suite. About 3 months prior to sailing, an Owners Suite came available for leg one and in January the same cabin came available for leg 2. We call that cruise karma. From the moment we stepped on the ship we were treated with the best service available. We had the head butler at our disposal (he has only 3 cabins and supervises the other butlers). This gentleman made the cruise for us. He got us into the restaurants we wanted when we wanted and was always available for anything else. At 2000 square feet, the suite was larger than my wife's first house. We had a bedroom with a separate bath and his and her closets. The foyer was our favorite as it had a fully stocked bar, sofa and grand piano that was a modern day player piano. The living room had a desk, table for 6 and full sofa. Everything was Ralph Loren, right down to the drink coasters and candy trays. With the number of sea days and with poor weather in the first week after leaving French Polynesia, we found our suite even more enjoyable. Unfortunately everything did not stay perfect. First, we missed the port call at Easter Island. The weather was great but there were ocean swells entering the tender harbor. Many were mad but we understand that this was just bad luck and, having done our homework, we realized that this was a real possibility. We booked an independent shore excursion there and as a result lost half of our prepaid excursion cost. Lima was mid cruise change out day. All was well but unbeknownst to us, someone brought aboard the dreaded GI disease. This was not our first experience with GI and Oceania. It is not a pretty site. Within 2 days of leaving Lima we started to see items disappear like the sugar bowls in the coffee bar. Next comes the announcement that if you feel sick, see the doctor for a free consultation (buyer beware - they do not say free treatment - see one of my previous Oceania reviews to learn about how Oceania will completely empty your pockets if you visit the medical center. When they hit the high level - 20 -30 people sick, service stinks. When entering a restaurant, there is nothing but a bare table cloth. Anything you can touch that can be removed is. The putting green is closed, but interestingly, live goes on as normal in the casino and ad in any other retail or money activities. We retreated to our room and used room service a bit more than we had been. The really bad part of this is that they keep the ship at this "protocol" until the GI is eradicated. It was almost over in central america (after a week) but 2 more came down with the GI. The end result was that the ship went back to normal only 3 days prior to the end of the cruise, so the total time under the sad conditions was 12 days in total. I suspect that other reviews will point this out. On departure from Miami we were informed that we would skip Norfolk and put into Port Canaveral. Good call. A check of the internet indicated 26 foot seas around Cape Hatteras and we would not have enjoyed it. I missed seeing my sister in Norfolk, but such is life. Sail into New York was mid-day and was an event everyone should get to experience. We sat on our expansive back deck and enjoyed the arrival with a room service lunch. Our travel agent has always warned us that Oceania lacks in entertainment. It did. Lectures weren't great, save for the Easter Island resident historian who prepped us for the visit that did not occur. The on board cast and guest entertainers were mediocre at best with the exception of a Vegas entertainer aboard the last week who was heads and shoulders above anything we had seen the entire 34 days aboard. This is not a high priority for us as the show mainly keeps us from going to bed too early. Overall, I would rate the cruise at a 4.5 if I could. I have been very critical of Oceania in the past, we are not likely to go again on the older smaller ships, but this one was great save for the unavoidable missed ports and GI experience. We are likely to book the larger Oceania Ship again, but only if we can get one of the top suites. We normally travel with Regent, Crystal or Seabourn but this experience was equal to or better than those lines. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We wanted to try a new line (we've cruised more than 20 times on Celebrity/Azamara) and Oceania had a cruise from French Polynesia to Peru. The selling point was a stop at Easter Island and then a post-tour of Machu Picchu. The ... Read More
We wanted to try a new line (we've cruised more than 20 times on Celebrity/Azamara) and Oceania had a cruise from French Polynesia to Peru. The selling point was a stop at Easter Island and then a post-tour of Machu Picchu. The ship itself was good. Our suite was spacious. The food was excellent in the specialty restaurants, average in the main dining area. Entertainment was hit and miss. There was a good comedian, a great pianist, a great magician and a terrible female singer. The on ship song and dance group was okay. We had two shows from each performer. Service was wonderful. The butler and room stewards were top notch and very attentive. Our butler knew I wanted Sprite Zero and when it was no longer available on the ship found some at one of our stops. That's over and above! We began on a bad note. The ship was scheduled to leave Tahiti at 9 p.m. Our Delta flight didn't arrive until 10 (they said not to worry, the bulk of the flight was passengers). That in itself says they expected us to arrive late. They took off immediately after and we didn't get our luggage until 3 a.m. To say that the first day was Tahiti and to spend one hour there in the dark isn't a great way to start. The stops in Raitea and Bora Bora were great, but I question 2 days in Bora Bora. There really wasn't much you could do at night in Bora Bora, so I question the overnight there. The stop in Fakarava was a joke. When there are no tours available at all--you got off to get a bit of exercise but that was it. The biggest disappointment, and the reason I gave this a bad rating was that we never got to Easter Island. It was called Pearls and Moai, indicating Polynesia and Easter Island, right? Wrong. We got to Easter Island and it was 'too rough' to send in the tenders (but we saw some boats circle our ship and part of others' groups. We circled the island, the pointed out some Moai from a distance and that was that. It was the reason we took the entire trip! I don't understand why we didn't know there was even a possibility of not getting to shore. I didn't think of checking the reliability of getting to shore. Why would you if that was one of the purposes of the cruise? It would have made more sense to spend one day on Bora Bora, and have two days at Easter Island. That way if you didn't make it to land on one day, you'd be able to the next. Sooooo disappointing. The closest we got to an apology was the captain announcing that he knew many of us were disappointed. Duh. Nothing added (like a free drink, or a discount on another cruise...) which leads me to believe that this is a common occurrence. When we left comments at the end of the cruise, there was no follow up, nothing in communication with us. Because we didn't stop at Easter Island we spent 11 days in a row at sea. Not acceptable. We took advantage of signing up for six of the cooking classes in their Culinary Center. That was worth the money! Stations for 24 people (2 per station) allowed us to learn about a specific type of food then prepare three dishes and eat them. We took advantage of the Roman, Sicilian, Greek, Spanish, pasta and Asian classes. It was our first time making fettucini! We are heading back to Celebrity. We would NEVER recommend Oceania to anyone. Read Less
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