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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
My sister had taken a similar repositioning cruise a year ago (Lisbon to Rio) and said it was the best (out of 50 or so cruises), the food, the service, etc. We found the food exceptional, to the point that the diet began half way through ... Read More
My sister had taken a similar repositioning cruise a year ago (Lisbon to Rio) and said it was the best (out of 50 or so cruises), the food, the service, etc. We found the food exceptional, to the point that the diet began half way through the cruise, due to our weak will power in the early half. We did cheat occasionally on the crossing portion. The added-on amenities re gratuities, land-based tours, air fare, internet etc., all made it attractive. Loved the Barista coffee efforts and afternoon tea. At first we thought oceania was too secular with no Christmas/holiday decorations, then one night the staff did a fabulous job, trees, lights, wreathes, and had a big reveal of a life size gingerbread house up and running. There was a limited Sunday service on one Sunday, and a Hanukah candle lighting effort. We have travelled Holland America and know they make an effort to have a priest on board for religious services. With 1/3 or so of the ship empty, I would think that a great PR gesture would be to bump up passengers to a higher category, e.g. one or two above their booked arrangements. How to make a customer even more loyal! I challenge the entertainment people to help all with diets and discipline, e.g have a weigh in on the first and last day with simple prizes to the smallest gainers! I'm serious!!!! Accompanying that, the fitness area should have nutrition seminars, given the age demographics of the cruisers. There may have been something but I missed it and the concern that I would be hit by a big bill, e.g. my wife came back from a $200 massage that helped! I also think that in the dining rooms, it would be so simple to ask the size of the portion requested, e.g. small, medium or large, rather than waste food. I found the library weak on layout and titles, compared to the Nautica. Luckily, we both had loaded up our tablets. Given the size of the ship, on board (crossing) activities were limited, although we did enjoy 2 of the movies and the dance groups in the Marina. I regret not using the fitness area more. I appreciated the enrichment speaker, particularly her presentation on migration to America. As a semi-retired professor/teacher, I give her full marks. On a six day crossing, so much more (e.g. 2x a day) could be given on interesting topics, e.g. Christmas traditions across the world, academic opportunities to learn re other Oceania cruises to become better informed, e.g. about Britain and Brexit, Scandinavia, the Mediterranean countries, European locations re WW1 and WW2, history of early ocean/new world crossings, e.g. the Leif Erikkson and the Vikings, and the other early explorers, Vasco de Game, Magellan and the Portuguese, Captains Cook and Vancouver. I saw where the Chinese may have been to Kenya long before Europeans. Other aspects of major crossings, the slave trade, formation of hurricanes off Cape Verde, the gulf stream, pollution of the oceans with plastics. I found the early arrival costs inhibiting, e.g. the diversion fare to come a few days earlier, and the hotels that Oceania were advertising in Barcelona, e.g. $400+ per person per night as an example. Knowing that Barcelona with its recent terrorist strike, and separation referendum has plummeted tourism, it would have been a welcome move to make early travel more inviting and welcome to the Barcelona and Catalonian economy. Following the insider news on the situation, could have reassured potential passengers of the safety. Would we do Oceania again. By all means! Hopefully my thoughts are considered seriously. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
Spain and Transatlantic on Oceania Marina We are a couple in our mid 50s and mid 60s, who were looking forward to trying something new after many years of cruising with Celebrity. We were looking for higher quality food and service than ... Read More
Spain and Transatlantic on Oceania Marina We are a couple in our mid 50s and mid 60s, who were looking forward to trying something new after many years of cruising with Celebrity. We were looking for higher quality food and service than Celebrity now offers, but also good entertainment, and some “new to us” ports, and this cruise with its Spain and Canary Island itinerary, plus a relaxing few days crossing the Atlantic sounded perfect to us. We spent four days pre-cruise in Barcelona at the Hotel 1898 which was excellent. Barcelona was uncrowded as we were out of season, so it was perfect for sightseeing. The Gaudi houses are a must-see and so is Sagrada Familia, which is a little closer to being finished than last time we saw it. We also took a private Montserrat and Cava tour with Barcelona Day Tours. There wasn’t a lot to see at Montserrat as the funicular was closed for renovation, and as it was bitterly cold we didn’t fancy any of the hikes. We did get to enjoy listening to the boys choir in the church there, and we did buy some excellent local cheese! Cava tasting at Art Cava was fun. On then to the cruise portion of our trip. We were in Concierge Class Verandah 10067, and had the O Life features of unlimited wifi, wine with lunch and dinner, and gratuities included. We are new to Oceania and had a wonderful first impression of the cruise line and the ship Marina. Check in was very quick and easy and we notice that no one was trying to sell us packages for drinks or specialty restaurants or even stopping us to take our photo. We were directed up to the buffet, which from past experience on other cruise lines has been a nightmare. Marina was much more civilised with staff serving the food for you and waiters carrying your food to the table for you. We actually enjoyed embarkation lunch this time! Marina is a smaller ship that we have been sailing on recently, but she is beautifully decorated and furnished, and spotlessly clean. We had a concierge level cabin and were very impressed with the layout, especially the marble bathroom, which had a proper bathtub with shower, as well as a separate shower cubicle. We liked the selection of Bulgari toiletries and the bath salts, and loved the abundance of soft towels that were provided. I had requested hypoallergenic bedding through my travel agent as I am allergic to feathers. Unfortunately there were feather pillows and bedding in the room, so the request had not reached Oceania. Our cabin attendant was very apologetic and said that she would make sure everything was changed during evening turndown service, and she did. We had very positive experiences with the food on Marina. I am not a person who likes to eat with strangers, so it was nice to have no problem getting a table for two. We typically ate breakfast at the buffet on sea days, and ordered room service on port days. Every time our room service order was exactly right, nothing was ever missing, which makes a pleasant change from other cruiselines we have sailed on! We ate lunch and dinner in the main dining room most days and the food was consistently good and the service was excellent. We had wines with meals included in our fare and found there was a good selection to choose from, although by about day five they were out of the french rose. Specialty restaurants on Oceania are included, and I easily made my reservations online before we sailed. In the end we ate twice at Red Ginger, once at Jacques and once at Polo Grill. The food was outstanding in all three. We had to cancel our Toscana reservation and never got round to rebooking as we enjoyed the main dining room so much. Afternoon tea was a wonderful experience, and the scones were delicious! We bought a package of assorted spa treatments, and had two couples massages, and two solo massages. They were pricy but enjoyable. The pool area was uncrowded and we had no trouble getting a sunbed, or ten! It really was deserted. Entertainment is where I felt things went a little awry. The singers and dancers were very talented, as were the live musicians, but, and it’s a big BUT, the music was not geared to my age group at all, it was aimed at much older demographic who like music from the 40’s, 50s and 60s and want to ballroom dance. Whether it was the production show “Songs of Peggy Lee” or “Music From The Brill Building” it was music from the same era. Only the “Dancing Fool” show gave a brief nod to the 1970’s. The Orchestra, The Party Band and Claude at the Piano all seemed to have the same repertoire. How many times can you hear Moon River, Route 66, Hit The Road Jack and Fever before you want to curl up and die? The string quartet were excellent and they, fortunately were allowed to play classical music, which made a welcome change. After a few nights we gave up trying to stay up for the late night happy hour at 10:30pm so maybe we missed out on more up to date music then, I don’t know. Daytime entertainment was very low key, with trivia, needlepoint and coffee, spa lectures and a guest speaker. We have done Transatlantic crossings before so were prepared and amused ourselves with books and puzzles we had brought with us. I also spent many an hour soaking in the bathtub, reading! I have to say I was a bit dubious about how good the wi-fi would be, especially if a large number of passengers had unlimited wifi included with O Life, and also because we were crossing the Atlantic. It was in fact really good. I was even able to download ebooks from my local library in the USA when we were half way across the Atlantic! Our itinerary had three ports in mainland Spain and two in the Canary Islands. We looked at ship tours but they didn’t really have anything that looked interesting to us and very few tours under $300 per person, so we booked small group semi-private tours through Spain Day Tours instead, for around $100 per person. From Alicante we visited Guadalest, from Malaga the Alhambra in Granada, and from Cadiz the Alcazar in Seville. We travelled on comfortable new coaches and had really good english speaking guides. In Tenerife we took a tour up to the top of the volcano and it was really interesting seeing the difference between the beach level, the forest area and the lava fields. Again this was organised through Spain Day Tours, and again the guide was good but this bus wasn’t as nice as the others. Our final tour was a ship tour on the island of La Palma. It was a bit disappointing. We did a short hike around the caldera, then visited an old house with wine and tapas to taste and then a church. It was low key and a bit boring compared to our other tours. At the end of the cruise it was refreshing to not experience waiters and cabin attendants grovelling and guilting you into ranking them a 10 whether or not you felt their service deserved it. Perhaps the Marina staff knew they would be getting 10s anyway because they really had provided exceptional service. Disembarkation was really easy. We were among the last groups called and were off the ship very quickly. In conclusion, the cruise was very nice, but we were really looking forward to getting off in Miami. Marina is a lovely ship, the food is outstanding, and the crew really go out of their way to please you, but I don’t think I have found my new cruise home yet. It’s a trade off and at this point I don’t think I am ready to give up livelier entertainment and more modern music in favour of a quiet more sedate experience with better food. Perhaps in 20 years time when people my age might be their target market, I’ll try Oceania again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
I love the Marina due to its comfort level in all aspects--stateroom, dining venues, crew and staff. I was on the inaugural sailing, and the Marina remains the same outstanding ship. I have done multiple transatlantics, but knowing ... Read More
I love the Marina due to its comfort level in all aspects--stateroom, dining venues, crew and staff. I was on the inaugural sailing, and the Marina remains the same outstanding ship. I have done multiple transatlantics, but knowing this ship and very much needing a nice relaxing trip, I chose the Marina. You cannot beat the crew and staff. They are there for every part of your trip. Boris, Restaurant Manager, runs a near perfect department as does our General Manager. The Concierge Lounge is a lovely feature, and I take advantage of having the internet available there, coffee, late afternoon snacks if you miss lunch, newspapers, and port maps. I think this Destination staff were excellent, and their program seemed to be much smoother than some in the past. I like the free laundry as this is a new feature. I bought my laundry coins when I boarded and nothing was said about having the free laundry. They did; however, refund my coins, but it would have been nice to know about In advance. Guess I don't read things carefully. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
If you are a foodie, or you just like to eat, then Oceania is the cruise line for you. We've taken 26 cruises on 11 different lines, and this was by far the best food we've ever had. Even at the buffets, the quality and variety were ... Read More
If you are a foodie, or you just like to eat, then Oceania is the cruise line for you. We've taken 26 cruises on 11 different lines, and this was by far the best food we've ever had. Even at the buffets, the quality and variety were superior to other lines, including luxury lines. Four speciality restaurants, all free, all with large varied menus, all lovely inviting spaces. A different menu each evening in the Main Dining Room. And the poolside grill had the best burgers and hot dogs we've ever had on sea. All food experiences were comparable to good dining on land, sometimes comparable to highly-rated on land restaurants. Come hungry and leave satisfied. The features of the cruising experience worked well: Smooth and quick embarkation and disembarkation; easy exits at ports with free shuttles into town; very good to excellent service, especially from the bar staff; the best fitness center I've ever used at sea. The Marina is an attractive ship, in very good condition, with lots of uncrowded public spaces inside and out. The ship is loaded with valuable art and at times felt like traveling in a carefully-planned gallery. We slept in a Penthouse stateroom, so we had plenty of space with the walk-in closet, full bathroom, and comfortable seating and eating areas. Stateroom service was good. Entertainment was similar to most cruise ships: Small production shows featuring pop songs and a few featured performers. Some shows were entertaining, some not so much. Your basic cruise ship fare. My only complaint has to do with the lack of activities on board. There were the usual trivia and ping pong contests, one guest lecturer, a clever country fair one day, but mostly we were left to our own devices to entertain ourselves. I expected this, after reading CC reviews, and we filled our days with reading, painting, and exercise. Oh, and I should mention that this is not a ship for those who love night life. Most guests retired early, after an early dinner, and definitely after the show. By 11:00 PM you could find only a dozen or so about. We mostly take crossings, and this was a repositioning, so it fit our needs. We made an open deposit for a future cruise and will return when we find the right itinerary, probably for a crossing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
We have taken a number of river boat trips and cruises on Disney and Princess. This was our first Oceania cruise and we were not dissappointed.. The food and service were excellent. Oceania clearly deserves it reputation. The specailty ... Read More
We have taken a number of river boat trips and cruises on Disney and Princess. This was our first Oceania cruise and we were not dissappointed.. The food and service were excellent. Oceania clearly deserves it reputation. The specailty restaurants were outstanding. The wi-fy workedmostly well though at times it was a bit slow. The ship was only 70% full so there were not any crouds. Fellow passangers were very friendly. My only complaint was that the guides for the excursions did not use voice/ whisper boxes so it was hard to hear the guides at times. The ship was spotless. The crew was exeptionally friendly. There was plenty of space to relax and read. There was good music in the various lounges. Frankly I thought crossng the Atlantic would allow for a lot of down time to read but there were too many things to do aboard the ship.. I would definitley cruise Oceania again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
A fabulous crossing from Barcelona to Miami. The absolute best cuisine at sea. Despite the December transAtlantic, the ocean cooperated with calm seas and mild weather. The ship, service, LaReserve, food & wine at its best! We ... Read More
A fabulous crossing from Barcelona to Miami. The absolute best cuisine at sea. Despite the December transAtlantic, the ocean cooperated with calm seas and mild weather. The ship, service, LaReserve, food & wine at its best! We enjoy sea days, having experienced 6 crossings. Marina (and sister ship) are the largest ships we ever cruise - a perfect size for us. Food quality is reliably superb. Wine selections generous by the glass - and good variety of premium wine for dinner venues. Barista's coffee bar is an early morning gathering place for cruisers. Fitness Center is busy on sea days mid-mornings; the band/orchestra played good jazz, easy listening, and dancing music. Pianist offered excellent arrangements and easy music for pre-dining cocktails. Wish we had booked a B2B and stayed on board for the next leg of the itinerary. Peaceful and beautiful relaxing cruise across the Atlantic Ocean. We'll be back! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
The cruise was superb, nice stops , great service, cleanliness at the highest level. The food everywhere was superb, highlights were Jacques first, Red Ginger a close second, Toscana s and Polo. The best salad certainly was the ... Read More
The cruise was superb, nice stops , great service, cleanliness at the highest level. The food everywhere was superb, highlights were Jacques first, Red Ginger a close second, Toscana s and Polo. The best salad certainly was the Watermelon and Duck salad served at Red Ginger. The Tournedos Rossini at Jacques was incredible as well as the Mille Feuilles dessert. At Toscana s I had The Filet mignon covered with a Gargonzola cheese sauce. I literrally cut my filet mignon with my fork. The tiramisu there was to die for. Anyway not a bad meal or a bad choice anywhere, the food was great. The Suites was great , the bedding and towels were first class. I could not find fault anywhere. The few things missing, more flowers or flower arramgements on the tables . One small annoyance was the fact that they did not have any way for you to verify your credit statement in your cabin, the only way is to go down to the customer service desk and ask for a printout. The other bugaboo was that they do not put the charge for daily tips on your invoice until the last day. Entertainment was not great but its a small ship. Small ships have many advantages, like no lineups, elevator when you want them, availability everywhere but one thing that suffers is usually entertainement Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We were on the Marina for 14 days, 6 of them at sea, and I have only high praise. The service was outstanding, everyone smiling and saying hello, the food was superb and the presentation of the dishes was truly over the top. Based on the ... Read More
We were on the Marina for 14 days, 6 of them at sea, and I have only high praise. The service was outstanding, everyone smiling and saying hello, the food was superb and the presentation of the dishes was truly over the top. Based on the itinerary, Barcelona to Miami, the shore excursions were as interesting as they could be although we thought they were overpriced. The classes at the culinary enter were a life saver on the days at sea and Chef Karlis is a great instructor and chef. Shipboard activities were well geared to the age level of the passengers and the evening entertainment was well attended most of the nights. No disco, no photographer, no children taking over the pool, plenty of lounge chairs and no signing a ticket every time you wanted a soft drink or cold water or a specialty coffee A high class operation, beautiful décor and furnishings. Oceania provides so many "little touches" that make a big difference.. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
Absolutely incredible!!!! The room size was great as was the size of the bathroom. The Bulgari amenities are a lovely touch. You event have a choice of the scent that is placed in your room. Sirena is a lovely ship and her crew ... Read More
Absolutely incredible!!!! The room size was great as was the size of the bathroom. The Bulgari amenities are a lovely touch. You event have a choice of the scent that is placed in your room. Sirena is a lovely ship and her crew ensured that we had a perfect experience!!! We are so happy with our sailing we have rebooked with Oceania on the Marina for 2019. The ports were wonderful on this sailing except for Nassau. It would be so much nicer if we had an overnight in one of the Spanish ports or Madeira and skipped that port all together. There were 6 other ships in dock that day (4 Carnival, 1 Disney, 1 Royal Caribbean). The enrichment sessions were wonderful and we went to almost every one! Entertainment was intimate and very good. Dining is excellent. We found the food in the Terrace Cafe and Grand Dining room to be excellent. Such attention to detail by Razvan and his dining room staff as well as Chef and his team!. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
I love Oceania Cruises but, not sure I like European beef. We sailed from Barcelona, Spain to Miami, Florida. While the cruise was good...the beef on board was way below standard. Being a meat manager...I believe the beef was either ... Read More
I love Oceania Cruises but, not sure I like European beef. We sailed from Barcelona, Spain to Miami, Florida. While the cruise was good...the beef on board was way below standard. Being a meat manager...I believe the beef was either European or US Select grade. This was based on two steak meals in the Tuscan Steakhouse and multiple occasions in the Main Dining Room and the Terrace Café. Service was great...entertainment left something to enjoy. The six Oceania singers/dancers were OK...still tailor there shows to 70s/80s folks (I am early 70s). This could be Improved...the accompanying band was great. With this said, Oceania is a good/great cruise line...but, as with other cruise lines they do over charge for beer/wine/mixed drinks. For example, if you don't buy one of there two beverages packages...there cheapest beer is $6.50 and they add an 18% gratuity on top of it. Same as they do for wine and mixed drinks...it gets expensive knowing what they have to pay for alcohol. Finally, tours and transit fees to/from the boat are way over-priced...try some web site like Viator. With all this said...I will return to Oceania. Read Less
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