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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
This was our 4th cruise with Oceania and we were just on the Riviera in February for a Caribbean cruise. Oceania is our cruiseline of choice because we like the size of the ship and the excellent food and service. Pre-Cruise: We flew ... Read More
This was our 4th cruise with Oceania and we were just on the Riviera in February for a Caribbean cruise. Oceania is our cruiseline of choice because we like the size of the ship and the excellent food and service. Pre-Cruise: We flew into Venice a day early and stayed at a hotel near the Piazza Roma and enjoyed the sights of Venice. We had a private tour of Venice the morning of boarding so we did not get to the ship until mid-afternoon so there was no line for checkin and the Terrace Cafe was empty when we went for a quick lunch. Cabin: We were in a PH2 on deck 10 (#10035) which was right next to the elevators but there was no problem with noise and we really liked the convenience of being close to the elevators. The cabin was big enough for us and had plenty of storage space. I especially like the walkin closet and all the drawers.Our butler was great and whenever we called for extra ice or sparkling water it was delivered quickly. We only did 1 breakfast in the room and it came on time and was hot. Dining: We found the dining and food on the Riviera to be just as good as on previous cruises. We had most of our breakfasts in the main dining room and the staff were always very pleasant and the food was good, We usually had lunches ashore. Dinners were mainly in the specialty restaurants and we were fortunate to get an extra reservation in both Red Ginger and Jacques (our 2 favourites). We enjoyed all the food and the only time we had an issue was when we brought a bottle of wine we had bought onshore to the Terrace Cafe for dinner and they could not locate it. They did eventually find it but then the wine steward was not around very often so we had to ask for service to get our glasses refilled. Service was good in all the other restaurants. Shipboard Activities: This was a port intensive cruise so we did not get to many of the shipboard activities.We did enjoy the pool and spa deck, the string quartet before dinner and afternoon tea. The pool was very busy most days since it was very hot out. The spa deck was really hot so we didn't stay up there for very long. We noticed the demographics were very different on this cruise with a lot more families and children and generally a livelier crowd. The bars were very busy! We didn't go to any of the evening shows but noticed that the musical productions were the same as what we saw in February. Excursions: We did mostly private excursions not through Oceania and they were very good. We did 2 excursions with Oceania. The first was to Murano & Burano and we enjoyed the boat ride to the islands and the tour guides gave a good description of the lagoon and the islands. The glass blowing demonstration in Murano was interesting and there was enough free time to walk around afterwards. In Burano we skipped the lace demonstration and had a nice lunch instead. The second excursion was in Corfu to the Acheillion Palace. This was an OE excursion so it was quite a bit more expensive but with a smaller group(12 people) in a van. However, we went to the same places as the large group so it was just as crowded. The tour guide was good and we had the earpieces so we could hear her, but I did not think it was worth the extra dollars. Ports: We enjoyed all the ports but found them to be very crowded with tourists and it was very hot while we were there. This took away from our enjoyment , especially in Santorini, but this is not a fault of Oceania. We usually found a nice cafe or restaurant near the water and spent a few hours there eating and people watching! Disembarkation: This was the easiest and fastest disembarkation I have ever experienced. They made the announcement, we walked off, got our luggage and were off on our tour of Athens in about 5 minutes. Fantastic! Overall, we enjoyed this cruise and are happy with Oceania and the Riviera. We are looking forward to our two future cruises! Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Easily the worst cruise company there is on a dated ship with untrained staff who don’t actually understand English but do “speak it.” Spent over $70k and food was meh, service was bad and no one seemed to care. Try Seaborne if ... Read More
Easily the worst cruise company there is on a dated ship with untrained staff who don’t actually understand English but do “speak it.” Spent over $70k and food was meh, service was bad and no one seemed to care. Try Seaborne if you can afford or Windstar before ever considering this line or this ship. We have cruised for years and this was the largest and most messed up ship ever and it is relatively small at 1200 passengers. Sad. Utter disappointment. Canyon Ranch Spa is NOT. Just branding. 5 restaurants. Not really. Just a mix of the same poor ingredients prepared differently. Staff dedicated — yes but constant language barrier makes any requests impossible. I don’t need to work to help paid staff on a cruise I am paying to enjoy. I was speechless to recognize that senior staff and management honestly don’t care. In fact one manager said they could not address the problem because they were in the middle of their own personal spa appointment in the middle of the work day. That’s choice! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary (Grecian Glory--Greece, Turkey, Italy) and also because we were traveling with a single adult daughter and wanted something fun for her--hopefully some young people on board. Pros: Clean, nice ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary (Grecian Glory--Greece, Turkey, Italy) and also because we were traveling with a single adult daughter and wanted something fun for her--hopefully some young people on board. Pros: Clean, nice ship. Food in specialty restaurants good, but main dining areas the food was just average. Staterooms are a good size, with plenty of storage, walk in closets, and great bathroom for a ship. We booked too late to get two rooms so we shared a penthouse with our daughter. I was concerned it would be too small but with all the storage we had plenty of room. I was really impressed with the bathroom which had a full size tub and a separate stand up shower. The main pool seemed to be deck chairs available, but we had our own private sun deck so that was never a concern. Embarkation was a breeze. We had our own time schedule since we had a penthouse. The check in was literally empty and we walked right onto the ship. Our luggage arrived in an hour. Cons: The entertainment is terrible on this ship. The Riviera lounge acts are geared to the 70+ crowd. Martini's piano lounge had a quiet, low-key atmosphere and was very boring. The Horizons bar had a band that I wouldn't have hired myself. Very cheezy. Other than entertainment, this cruise line really fell short on helping with information on destinations. We wanted to go to a beach on the far side of Mykonos and our concierge didn't even know that there are only 25 taxis on the whole island. She had NO information on how to get where and admitted she had never been on the island. We asked her to get us a private driver and she isn't allowed to do that. On another island we asked if she could book us a private charter boat--can't do that either. Hmmm. Not sure what the point of the concierge is. Many of the passengers got off at Mykonos not knowing that we had to take two shuttles to get to the town because there was poor communication from the ship. There were numerous other examples but you get the idea. We only did a few of the excursions and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised at how much we liked them. We ended on a bad note in Turkey, however, when our tour guide tried to "force" us to sit through a 30 minute Turkish rug demonstration. We walked out because we've done it before and it's all a scam. I was disappointed that Oceania approved something like that. We took full advantage of the spa and I was shocked to see such an antiquated booking system. It's all done on paper (welcome to the 1990's) and takes forever to get appointments and to confirm them. They also had few fitness classes even though they advertise that they have several daily. The stationary machines looked fine, but that's not my preferred workout so I didn't use them. Not sure i would sail with them again. Maybe in 10 years. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
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
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We have sailed with the line before and the overall experience is on a downward slope. We sailed from Vienna to Lisbon, departing in late May. The ship had come out of dry dock a couple of weeks earlier, which may account for some of the ... Read More
We have sailed with the line before and the overall experience is on a downward slope. We sailed from Vienna to Lisbon, departing in late May. The ship had come out of dry dock a couple of weeks earlier, which may account for some of the issues. It is a smaller ship, and the cabins were fully occupied. On the plus side the crew were without fail helpful, friendly and when you could get their attention, attentive. The cabin was well kept and the stewards frequently inquired if we had any issues or needed anything. We could get our empty suitcases under the bed, I noted someone else mentioned an issue with this. We did find the staffing levels seemed inadequate on many occasions. It was difficult to get service in the Terrace Cafe during all meals. On many occasions the grill area was in chaos,unable to keep orders straight, as well as not cooked in the manner requested. I heard several other passengers voice concerns over the level of service. The upside was no matter how busy the servers were they always remained cheerful. The bar staff in Martini's was also unable to keep up with the flow of people, with slow service experienced throughout the cruise, even though we did raise the issue more than once with hotel managers. I speculated that as they now sell so many drink packages they cut back on bar staff because it's not as much a revenue stream. There are only two specialty restaurants (vs. four on the larger ships). Service in those was very good, as was the service in the main dining room. I found the entertainment was good, and the entertainment team was engaging and interesting. The line charges a premium price, and for that I do expect a superior product. I don't feel as if it was delivered on this cruise. Hopefully it's a one off! 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
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Ports: We chose this cruise mainly for the ports... and they were beautiful. For Santorini, 5 ships were there, was really crowded, and long wait to come back down on the cable car. Otherwise, we had great weather and enjoyed the ... Read More
Ports: We chose this cruise mainly for the ports... and they were beautiful. For Santorini, 5 ships were there, was really crowded, and long wait to come back down on the cable car. Otherwise, we had great weather and enjoyed the cruise. Ship: Just remodeled in Marseilles France May 2019 so looked great. The decor has all been upgraded, all new cabins, and mostly new public spaces. The ship is small by today's norms but was a good size for getting around and also seeing folks you met along the way again. Cuisine: Although the lead tag is "Finest Cuisine at Sea," for this cruise, it fell short... at least compared to cruise we took on their Marina December 2017. There is much to pick from as far as selection... maybe too much ? I had cold eggs in the Terrace Cafe, lukewarm coffee at high tea one afternoon, tough lobster in Tuscan steak, dry and tasteless salmon in the main dining room, etc. I realize perfection is not possible over 10 days and so many passengers, but it was overall much better on our Marina cruise. We indeed had some decent dishes over the 10 days, but not great. `1 Specialty Restaurants: Waves Grill must be noted as doing the best job on consistently good food (burgers, grilled salmon, smoothies, shakes) but the other spots need to get to that level. Red Ginger was better on this cruise than Marina; not great but better. Tuscan Steak was o.k. Service: seems to always be a bit unpredictable but the best was from seasoned employees who have been with the company for many years. Ship was full... totally booked... so that maybe affected overall food and service ? Entertainment: Cruise Director Julie James is a bundle of energy and did a great job. Six singer/dancers, five piece band, and four strings, and a few guest appearances managed to hold down the fort and keep us entertained. This is a small ship, so if your big thing is activities and entertainment, go on a big boat ! Cultural/corporate: The company is (understandably) extremely marketing focused. We constantly receive very slick brochures, promotional e-mails, etc. Maybe some of this effort needs to be shifted towards details of the passenger experience, however. I think one way to improve here is to have more women in higher ranks on the ships as ours had maybe two in their very large group of ship leadership when they were introduced. There seems to be some progress being made on this in the industry, but that that was not the case here. As younger folks eventually start taking cruises, they will notice this, it will matter, so I think it would behoove Oceania to improve on this, which would likely also improve the quality of the passenger experience. Overall: Very good company, would cruise again in the future, but maybe temper my expectations a bit. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We sailed on Sirena May 29, 2019 out of Venice. Although Sirena did an overnight in Venice, our flight didn't arrive until late afternoon. I used Oceania for my air. They booked us through Copenhagen from Boston with a five hour ... Read More
We sailed on Sirena May 29, 2019 out of Venice. Although Sirena did an overnight in Venice, our flight didn't arrive until late afternoon. I used Oceania for my air. They booked us through Copenhagen from Boston with a five hour wait for our flight to Venice. The next day the ship departed at 3:00pm. Useless port unless you arrive at least a day early. The ship just finished a total renovation. I was not impressed. It did not look elegant. The cabin (concierge) was extremely small. No afternoon appetizers. The luggage couldn't fit under the beds so we had to deal with it the entire time in the cabin. One could barely walk by the bottom of the beds. I also thought concierge was an upgrade from a balcony. I honestly did not feel there was any difference between balcony and concierge. Nothing special. As a matter of fact, I left a precious hand painted piece of artwork on the desk upon disembarkation. Upon arrival home, I immediately contacted Oceania via email as there was no phone number provided for this. From guest services I received a response that they checked with the vessel's Concierge, Chief Housekeeper and the Reception Desk, however, the artwork was not found nor returned to lost and found. I asked that they talk with the cabin steward as he would have found it and he would be able to tell them what he did with it. Oceania has not responded. Very disappointed with their response. We made excursion reservations prior to embarking on the cruise. Upon arrival in our cabin there was a letter informing us that one of the excursions was cancelled. We visited with the excursion staff but the new excursions we chose were unavailable and we were sent back to our cabin to choose additional choices. Many of our fellow cruisers were affected with cancelled excursions. We spent more time arranging new excursions than enjoying the cruise. We were so looking forward to the Greek Islands but the ports were so crowded you could not move on the islands. The highlight of this cruise was the food. They do an exceptional job in all the restaurants. One feels very special. The entertainment was below par when compared with larger cruise lines. There were very few children onboard. Having been on Oceania before, and being so impressed with the line, I talked a girlfriend into this cruise. It was an embarrassment for me. I spoke so highly of Oceania to her prior to the cruise. I am sorry to say I would not cruise with Oceania again. There were too many problems to call this a vacation. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This was our first Oceania cruise after having travelled with Carnival, Princess and Royal Caribbean previously. We had been to a couple of Oceania events where they spoke highly about their food and said it was the best at sea. The ... Read More
This was our first Oceania cruise after having travelled with Carnival, Princess and Royal Caribbean previously. We had been to a couple of Oceania events where they spoke highly about their food and said it was the best at sea. The food on our cruise was not as good as they claimed. Some cuts of meat were very fatty, almost inedible (even at Jaques and the Polo grill) . A pad-thai in the main dining room was horrible and some ice creams had so little flavour, we couldn't tell what they were supposed to be. On the other hand, some food was really good and we loved the Illy Crema at Baristas. There is a well equipped gym, a free sauna and steam room and a jogging track. Art classes and craft sessions were very enjoyable. There is a well stocked library and there are free self-serve laundries with washing, drying and ironing facilities. As we found with other first time Oceania cruisers, we all overpacked formal clothing and didn't bring enough casual clothes. Except for dining rooms at dinner time, t-shirts (or polo shirts) and shorts or jeans were all that were required. Some entertainment was really good. The ships' singers and dancers were good and the magician was very entertaining. The service on the ship was great, there were staff everywhere and they were very helpful and friendly. Most of our shore excursions were fine. They were all Oceania tours. The only problem was that not enough time was allocated to look around museums or visit other attractions. We may go on another Oceania cruise in the future. Maybe we will wait to see what their new Allura class ships will be like. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose this cruise because we had not been to several of the the port stops before. We were disappointed in the food. We live in Houston, dine out frequently, and expected the food to be better. My steak in the Polo was over cooked, ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had not been to several of the the port stops before. We were disappointed in the food. We live in Houston, dine out frequently, and expected the food to be better. My steak in the Polo was over cooked, not impressed at all. The Red Ginger was a real disappointment. Did not care for it at all. Much better Asian in Houston. We really liked Jacques and Toscana. As for the main dining room, it just wasn’t as good as we expected. We stayed in a concierge level cabin. We were impressed with the room, bathroom and the cabin steward. Probably the best in our 20 cruises. Loved the linens, towels, toiletries and room layout. We did not take the ships excursions. I thought they were really expensive. Our group of 4 hired a private guide in ports for the same per person price as the least expensive tour offered by the boat. We also heard several people say they were disappointed in the tours. We loved every excursion but we arranged it ourselves. The staff was excellent. The Gym was great. Did not use the spa. We only had one sea day. We bought the drink package and the bar service was very good. Venice. We took the large water taxi to Piazza San Marco. Bought ticket for round trip right outside the cruise ship. Venice was very crowded. We walked around and took a gondola ride through canals and rode by the Rialto bridge. Back to ship. Watched as we sailed away from Venice listening to Andrea Bocelli. Dinner at Polo Restaurant. - Dubrovnik, Croatia. Arrived at 1:30 pm. Found taxi driver outside the port who drove us around the outskirts of town and up the mountain for a panoramic view of Dubrovnik. Then to visit Fort Imperial which houses a museum of the Croatian war of Independence in and a short film about the war. I hope hunk it was 50 euros. Then he dropped us at the town of Dubrovnik where many scenes of Game of Thrones were filmed. Walked around town and took a taxi Back to the ship. Drinks in the piano bar and dinner in Grande dining room. - Kotor, Montenegro. Met at the port by Nikolai with Mont Travelers at 8:30. He drove us for an overview of Boka Bay where our ship was docked and took a boat ride to see the Our Lady of the Rocks. Then we went to see the town of Perast which is on the water with beautiful sea views. We drove back to Kotor and visited a fish market to see all the different seafood from Kotor. Followed by a drive to view Jaz Beach and a walking tour of the old town of Budva. Drove back to Kotor for a walking tour. The tour was awesome. 280 euros for 4 people. Nikolai was fabulous and a very safe driver. Dinner in Grande dining room. cruised around Italy - Malta. Did a Small group tour Simply Malta with 12 people from the ship we arranged through cruise critic roll call. A drive to the south of the island of Malta to see the Blue Grotto. The grotto and neighboring system of sea caves are home to brilliant phosphorescent marine life. The boat ride showed us the incredible beauty of this natural wonder. It was wonderful. Then we traveled through the Girgenti valley and on to the west coast seeing the Dingli cliffs. We drove to Rabat for a walking tour of Rabat and the old town Mdina, once the capital of Malta until Valleta was built. Mdina was where scenes from season one of Game of Thrones was filmed. Back to Valletta, Malta. We got back on board and Dinner in Toscana - Italian. - Sicily where we could see Mt Etna in distance. We got a taxi at the port to drive us to Taormina. I think it was 25 euros. Our driver told us it looked like fireworks coming out of it at night. We walked around town. Then we found a taxi driver in town named Vincenzo Franco (+39 338 850 1413) who drove us to scenic view points around the outskirts of Taormina and back to the ship. He was awesome and I would call him and arrange for him to drive me if I go again. Dinner in Grande dining room. - Amalfi. Picked up at the port by for a full day tour of the Amalfi coast by Sorrento Top Driver, Di Coppola Antonino +39 3392207065. He drove us along the Amalfi Coast stopping for pictures and on to Positano. Parked while we shopped and walked around the town. Then drove us back to Amalfi and on to Ravello for lunch overlooking the sea. Back to ship. Really great day with Tonino. Dinner in Jacques - French. -Rome. Picked up at the dock at by Enrico with Rome in limo. A full day of seeing the sights of Rome. First stop for coffee and pastries then to a hill with a great view overlooking Rome. Next a walk through Trastevere where we went into a church during a Sunday service. On to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Piazza Navona (where the Italian Air Force flew over leaving a trail of red, white and green smoke because it was a national holiday, saw the Trevi Fountain, Spanish steps, Pantheon. Enrico stopped to let us out, wait for us and drive to the next stop. Giving us lots of info as we went. Dropped us off at a small restaurant for great lunch. Toured the Catacombe Di San Callisto of and dropped us back at ship about 5. We had spent a few days in Rome on another trip so we didn’t plan on going to the Vatican. Seafood extravaganza in the Waves. -Tuscany. Picked up at the port of Livorno by Alessandro Cammilli. www.alessandrocammilli.com Drove for about an hour to San Gimignano where we toured the town and had gelato and coffee at outside cafe. Drove to Castelllina in Chianti, Greve in Chianti and the Chianti countryside of Tuscany. Stopped for lunch in Lamole at a restaurant on an outdoor terrace on the top of a hill with wonderful views of wine country. We stopped by a WWII memorial and cemetery where 4400 American soldiers were buried. Then drove to see the leaning tower of Pisa and back to the ship about 5. Dinner in Toscana - Italian. - Monte Carlo. Took a small train around town to see the sights. Then took the bus along the Mediterranean Sea to Nice and back by train to Monaco. This was the only thing we wish we had done differently. We would get off the bus at the stop BEFORE Nice it was too big and not very appealing. The town before nice looked beautiful and easy to navigate. Can’t remember the name. Dinner in Grande dining room. -Toulon, France. Took a small train from the port around Toulon. Got off in town. Took the bus to Mt Faron and a cable car to the top of the mountain. Dinner in Red Ginger - Asian. Stayed three nights in Barcelona. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We initially chose this Cruise and ship because of the itinerary. I have always wanted to see these Mediterranean cities, towns and historic sites we have read so much about. We chose Oceania's Promenades and Palaces on the Riviera ... Read More
We initially chose this Cruise and ship because of the itinerary. I have always wanted to see these Mediterranean cities, towns and historic sites we have read so much about. We chose Oceania's Promenades and Palaces on the Riviera because it included a visit to Valletta in Malta, which had a family connection. Also it was at a great time of year and the weather certainly justified our choice. Well we had a marvellous time, the experience of a life time.The excursions ashore were great because they were so well-organised. But the life on-board the Riviera was just as enjoyable. The Riviera is a beautiful ship with all the facilities one could need, but a highlight for us was the amazing service everyone received from every single staff member who simply couldn't do enough for you. The ship's reputation as having the best cuisine on the seas is undisputed after our trip. The atmosphere on the ship allowed us to make many new friends from a range of countries. I would recommend the Riviera to anyone. Peter McCudden (Australia) Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We decided on taking our first cruise and for sure this is the LAST one and for sure the LAST one on Oceania Nautica. Room was tight and two people cannot move in it. Food is TERRIBLE and it seems they rotate the same ingredients over ... Read More
We decided on taking our first cruise and for sure this is the LAST one and for sure the LAST one on Oceania Nautica. Room was tight and two people cannot move in it. Food is TERRIBLE and it seems they rotate the same ingredients over and over again. All seafood served is farmed and not wild caught. WAY too much hidden sodium in all the food, evidenced by the fact that we work up continuously every night to drink water. It's amazing folks don't have a heart attack eating the stuff they serve. Overly pretentious considering food is lousy. Out room maid was very nice though. Shore excursions are WAY over-priced and you can get the same thing on shore for a small fraction of the price they charge. Also, the management is constantly finding ways to squeeze more money out of you. For example, it's stated that there is free WIFI, however that applies to only ONE device. If you wish to connect a second device to your room's router, it's a charge of $250 per extra connection ... FROM THE SAME ROUTER! The management should be ASHAMED of themselves. We could not wait for the cruise to end. STAY AWAY!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Nautica was an elegant ship, nice layout, super easy/fast embarkation and debarkation. We love Oceania’s relaxed attitude on alcohol – we brought a bottle or two on from multiple ports, and got jokes about how heavy our bag was, with ... Read More
Nautica was an elegant ship, nice layout, super easy/fast embarkation and debarkation. We love Oceania’s relaxed attitude on alcohol – we brought a bottle or two on from multiple ports, and got jokes about how heavy our bag was, with the wine handed back to us. The 2-for-1 daily happy hour is straightforward, and a nice way to take advantage of pre-dinner drinks in a lounge. Itinerary & Excursions We chose the cruise due to the itinerary, so we obviously loved it. Venice to Athens, with ports every day. Ancona, Italy was a nice surprise; Split, Croatia was disappointing. All of the cities were very walkable with tons of information available, and we did our own planning and excursions. Stateroom and Ship in General Given the time of year, we didn’t want a balcony. Instead, we had an oceanview, and the lack of a balcony plus a GIANT window translated into a spacious stateroom – we loved it. Tons of space for all of our things. The bathroom was tired, and I hope it’s included in the upcoming refit. The ship overall is elegant and tastefully appointed, with beautiful art. Lovely. Food Our biggest disappointment of the cruise. Oceania is known as a ‘foodie’ cruise line. On a previous cruise, we were SO impressed by the baked goods that we were drooling just thinking of getting to eat them again. But the food – even in the specialty restaurants – was just good, not great. The baked goods (other than the amazing sticky buns) were consistently stale whether in the buffet or the restaurants, and were just okay. There was no wow factor, at all. What happened, Oceania? Entertainment & Enrichment The production staff were just okay. We also had an amazing pianist but playing sonatas for an hour is pretty low energy for a cruise. A saxophonist, Oli Nez, who was quite talented and smooth. Our cruise director had been a jazz singer in a former life so she sang one night. Overall, pretty good, but you didn’t feel bad if you missed a night’s show. The daily string quartet was fantastic. Disappointed that there wasn’t any enrichment on board as we’d have liked to hear about some local history, etc. but we were in port every day so I suspect that was the cause. Staff Amazing. Truly the most content, gracious, friendly, helpful, funny, sweet staff we’ve encountered on any cruise – a true testament to how Oceania and Nautica in particular treats people. Very impressed. Canyon Spa & Fitness Centre The Fitness Centre is quite well equipped and a good size. It was easy to pop in, find whatever equipment you wanted/needed, and spend some time offsetting the food! The spa itself was gorgeous – beautifully designed, with cucumber and lemon ice water always available. If you were concierge level and above, you could use the back deck and giant hot tub. However, all passengers could use the facilities and the steam room (just hand over your room card to get a locker key) for free – as on most cruises – which was a lovely bonus that we took advantage of almost daily. My husband did have a spa treatment on his birthday to use up some of our shipboard credits, and it was wonderful. Spa staff are also great. WiFi and Computer lab Wifi seems to be included now (in use on 1 device at a time), though we didn’t really want it as we enjoy the forced withdrawal from life of a cruise. Wifi was a decent speed…until you got to the computer lab. The computer lab is ridiculous – saran-wrapped keyboards (!) and the most painfully awfully slow internet I’ve experienced (and that includes dialup). It was virtually impossible to accomplish any task. I don’t understand why there was such a difference, given that we logged into wifi on both our phones and the computer lab with the same account, but there it was. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Nautica is one of 8 identical ships built for Rennaissance cruise line. Azamara have 3 and Oceania have 4. They are small enough to get into ports which larger ships cannot and therefor have better itineraries. the weather on this cruise ... Read More
Nautica is one of 8 identical ships built for Rennaissance cruise line. Azamara have 3 and Oceania have 4. They are small enough to get into ports which larger ships cannot and therefor have better itineraries. the weather on this cruise had several days of rough weather resulting in missing the first port which was changed to Naples. We did back to back cruises and the weather improved as we headed south. The food on this cruise was outstanding. The main dining room frequently produced meals the equal of the speciality restaurants. This included the lunch menu. Additional meals in the speciality restaurants could be booked at the desk in the terrace cafe every morning.The other outstanding feature was the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff from general manager to cabin steward. This attitude more than made up for the weather. We chose the excursions from the 3 choices of the "o" life choice before the cruise so we did not have to pay extra to the cruise fare. The excursions were standard and similar to what can be obtained on other cruise lines. If we had paid the prices extra we would have been overcharged by some margin. Similarly the prices for alcoholic beverages were very high. The cabins on the "r" class ships have small bathrooms. When the forthcoming upgrade of Oceania's ships takes place it would be money well spent if the shower cubicle were extended as well as putting on a folding door. This would be preferable to to cosmetic changes. We benefit from the excellent Oceania loyalty programme. We are disappointed that in November 2019 the higher grades may be penalised If the food service and itinerary are priorities Nautica is a good choice. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We had never been to the Adriatic and a small ship seemed the best way to go. Having been on Oceania the year before, we knew that the food would be amazing and we certainly weren't disappointed. The itinerary was excellent with more ... Read More
We had never been to the Adriatic and a small ship seemed the best way to go. Having been on Oceania the year before, we knew that the food would be amazing and we certainly weren't disappointed. The itinerary was excellent with more to see than we could possibly fit into 10 days. The sense of history is incredible. Highly recommend Venice, Ancona, Dubrovnik and Kotor if you have never been there. Rhodes and the Greek Coast were also enjoyable. Other stops were Santorini and Rhodes both of which we needed more time to explore. We had very rough weather in Santorini which made embarkation an adventure, but the crew were very diligent in keeping everyone safe. We highly recommend the old towns in Dubrovnik and Rhodes as the is literally dozens of things to see. Kotor is stunningly beautiful as is the Croation coast line. Everywhere we went, the people were friendly and helpful. As usual, the food was absolutely the best we have enjoyed at sea, whether in the MDR, Horizons, or the 2 specialty restaurants - Toscana and Polo Grill. Only regret is that Red Ginger is not found on the 4 smaller ships. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Manly booked this for the itinerary. It was a 12 night - Venice to Barcelona . 11-1-18 to 11-13-18. Excursions were not as described. The stops listed were not accurate. One location did not have the handicrafts village as highlighted. ... Read More
Manly booked this for the itinerary. It was a 12 night - Venice to Barcelona . 11-1-18 to 11-13-18. Excursions were not as described. The stops listed were not accurate. One location did not have the handicrafts village as highlighted. Another town was completely closed on the day we were there. Nothing to see at all! They return you back to the ship 2-3 hours before ship left port. Not enough time given to sights that were available. Big waste of money. The destination desk personnel were useless and could care less. This Cruise line is over rated. Horrible entertainment. It doesn't exist. First time on Oceania and probably the last. Expected more from a so called upper class sailing. This is also not recommended for any one who is handicap. All ports of call and the excursions we were part of would be a real challenge for those who are handicap. The food was very good compared to other Cruise lines. But do NOT touch anything or the food Nazis will repremand you. Sparkling water and soft drinks are all included. As for cocktails, way over priced. Friends were charged $56.00 for 2 drinks in the main dining room because he made the mortal mistake of ordering a " double" rum and coke. He only made that mistake once. The staff were very good and attended to all your needs in the beginning of this itinerary, but slowly declined as the days passed. It seemed as though many have had enough and were anxious to go home, as this was their final voyage for the season. As previously noted the worst was the " Destinations" personnel. They could care less about anything. For your O Life choice, do yourself a favor and use the ship board credit. The free excursions are NOT the way to go! Go with an outside company or explore on your own. It should also be noted that this was not a voyage for families with young children. They would be extremely board due to the lack of entertainment and the ports of call. It's catered towards the adults. For the fees charged on this line, we expected a little more. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Overall a pretty good experience for our first time on O. A bunch of little things went wrong and we tried not to let it spoil the whole cruise. The ship is easy to get around but could use more elevators aft as they are always busy ... Read More
Overall a pretty good experience for our first time on O. A bunch of little things went wrong and we tried not to let it spoil the whole cruise. The ship is easy to get around but could use more elevators aft as they are always busy (that's largely where the food is). Dining ranged from spectacular (La Reserve) to very good (Toscana, Jacques) to surprisingly good (buffet on 12, pool grill) to mediocre (MDR, Polo). Food is subjective but I'm referring to basics here (proper temperature and doneness). Specialty restaurants saw demand far exceed supply--do not expect extra reservations! Service was good from 90% of the staff. The room steward and the food and beverage team were great. The gangway staff were excellent at getting my wheelchair on and off. Sadly when we really needed help from the Concierge on Deck 9 or from reception, they were often rude or aloof. Concierge seemed to only know the word "no". I eventually had to deal with the Purser, who put matters right. Two ports were missed for no good reason--ask the Captain: he laid the blame at HQ's feet. Overall it was a decent set of ports and had we made the two stops in the Canaries it would have been superior. Top tip: if you get sick, don't go to the Medical Centre. They'll take you for everything you have. Embarkation smooth as glass. Disembarkation a bit farcical but that might have been beyond the ship's control. We will cruise O again but will never pay extra for 'Concierge' service, and pray we don't need to deal with Reception. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise because it was recommended by a friend who also was traveling with us. It was beyond our expectations. The only complaint we had was the carpet in our cabin either needed replacing or a good shampooing. When we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was recommended by a friend who also was traveling with us. It was beyond our expectations. The only complaint we had was the carpet in our cabin either needed replacing or a good shampooing. When we mentioned it, someone came to our door and apologized for the condition of the rug and explained that once this cruise was completed, the entire ship was getting an overhaul. The food for the most part was very good. I think they need to have better entertainment though. We ate in The Grand Dining Room, Jacques, Toscana, The Polo Grill and the Red Ginger. All the meals were delicious. The tours we picked were also pretty good. Our cabin was 10063 and we had concierge service which was exceptional as was our cabin steward I Wayan was also wonderful net our every need. On the whole I would definitely recommend recommend the Oceania Riviera Ship. The staff was wonderful and courteous. There was one problem with disembarkation, Our bus took us to the wrong terminal , he took us to number 2 instead of number one. We had already taken all of our luggage from the bus and then had to put it back on and that was a pain for we got to the airport later than we had expected with not as much time to get something to eat before we had to get on the plane. It probably would have been much better if we had taken a taxi and also less expensive. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
As first time cruisers with Oeania, chose this cruise for two reasons: (1) had reserved twice and cancelled because found very similar cruise at almost the same price with Regent Seven Seas, and (2) this cruise took us to places we wanted ... Read More
As first time cruisers with Oeania, chose this cruise for two reasons: (1) had reserved twice and cancelled because found very similar cruise at almost the same price with Regent Seven Seas, and (2) this cruise took us to places we wanted to see again (Dubrovnik, Kotor, Valeta, Monaco, Marseille), price was very attractive and the potential alternative (RSS) is no longer in quality and value what it once was. Our experience began arriving at Venice 3 days before embarkation only to encounter record flooding forcing us to almost swim to our hotel just off Piazza San Marco and again swim to emark on the Riviera. Fortunately, we were able to find a porter to take our bagggage and buy boots to waddle behind him.. Embarkation was OK, having to walk under the drizzling rain for abour half a mile, but quick and easier than expected. Cabin was as expected, not large but not small, adequate balcony, very well maintained and excellent attendants. Bathroom much larger than expected with all the amenities expected, shower equally as expected. And by expected we mean in terms of Oceani's own promotional advertising and our own perception comparing other cruise lines we have experieced such as Azamara, Cunard, Crystal and Regent Seven Seas. Dining was much better than expected even though twice we found hairs in our meals. The quality and variety of the food quite good, if not excellent, served by crew members who prevented passengers from touching the food even when doing so would not have affected other food. Service was not only clean and efficient, but very friendly and helpful. All dining areas were bigger and amplier than in most other ships we have cruised, with the decoration very comfortable, if not attractive. Very few times were we forced to wait for a table, which upon being vacated were immediatly cleaned and prepared for use again. Better than expected, since it constantly attracted our attention, was the quality and variety of fruits at breakfast time, especially tropical frutis like papaya and mango, along with kiwi, which were almost always ripe and sweet. Less than expected, the variety of plain bread (as opposed to sweetened breads and pastries), such as what one finds at bakeries and in fact in ALL other ships we have cruised (especialoly european style breads, which are much better than american style breads). We tried breakfast at the main dining room once and decided it was not for us. We never visited the main dining room at lunch and only once for dinner, both times deciding it was not for us.. (No comment regarding food and service,) The buffet lunch was equally good in quality and variety , as was the buffet dinner (although we frequented the specialty restaurants as often as we could, considering them much better in all respects. Particularly Polo Grill and Red Ginger, without implying that Jacques and Toscana were inferior. Significantly more attractive than the other three was the service at Red Ginger and in our view the quality and variety of offers at the Polo Grill was superior to the other three. But all were excellent and we recommend taking advantage of them every time possible. Entertainment was for us good but not excellent. In our view, the singers were not what we expected in terms of profoundness and extension of voice. Their dancing was very good, but as in other ships rather mechanical and repetitive. Nonetheless, we enjoyed the performances and would suggest Oeania add more comics, magicians (the one who performed was above excellence and should be hired as a permanent contributor) and classical piano performers. In this respect, a comment regarding the theater. Although excellent in seat comfort and amplitud, we consider it should be improved by either raising the stage or increasing the incline. It is very difficult to really enjoy performances from the back because of insufficient incline or the stage too low. At the various bars and public rooms such as Horizon, the performers were all excellent, particularly when playing classical mushic. Suggest adding more music appropriate to the predominantly elderly passengers (such as us) with pieces from the 30s to the 50s. The pool area actually better than expected because of its size and comfort. The elevators very efficient and ample, although at times somewhat unavailable due to excessive traffic, which is to be expected. Our Consierge was excellent and the facility equally excellent, both in all respects, as our two cabin attendants. We did have difficulties with the toilet, which several times decided to have its own way forcing us to call for help from the Reception to reestablish its proper functioning condition. We do not know the cause and look forward to having it permanently fixed as soon as possible. Reception staff was efficient but we found it too serious and somewhat unfriendly in many occasions, perhaps because of their long hours at work and the many requests they may have been receiving from guests like us. Hence, not what we expected, when comparing with other cruise ships we know. Bar tenders, on the other hand, were at all times very friendly although not as efficient or well prepared as perhaps they could or should have been. In this respect, we do praise Oceania for its Happy Hours that reduced the price of drinks by half, since their premium package is overwhelmingly unreachable ($59.95 pp/day meaning daily ingestion of 4 drinks at an average price of $15 per drink to just cover the cost, whether wine or spirits), since walking to one/s cabin was not always smooth. Excursions were as expected, including the tenders when needed. Well organized and exercised. Excursion staff, however, not very helpful in resolving issues. This happened to us with respect to disembarkation, which they could have easily resolved but insisted they could (would) not. In the end, what we had requested became null because the ship did not apply its established rules, deciding in favor of the flexibility we had requested (we are sure this had nothing to do with our request, rather due to port authorities). Finally, we were surpried to see so many passengers with disabilities, more than what we expected, even when we have cruised on Regent Seven Seas (many times) and Cunard (also many times), and even more surprised with the excellent service to attend to those in need, at all times and at all places. Even when not necessary or needed, some crew member would appear to serve if and as required, quite often even when not required, just in case. Hence, the cruise line's demonstrated preparedmess at all times, even if or when affecting passenger tranquility -- frequent crew exercises and avoiding two planned ports (Spanish Canary Islands) because of a potentially troublesome ocean, enabling us to enjoy two additional days at sea (which was minimally motioned, in my opinion although no in my wife's opinion). Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Very happy with our first Oceania experience. Excellent staff and service and the food exceeds anything we’ve experienced on RCCL. Cabin was very nice and always well kept. Food in the specialty restaurants ranged from good (Polo Grill ... Read More
Very happy with our first Oceania experience. Excellent staff and service and the food exceeds anything we’ve experienced on RCCL. Cabin was very nice and always well kept. Food in the specialty restaurants ranged from good (Polo Grill & Tuscana) to excellent (Red Ginger). Onboard activities are limited compared to the larger party barges but they maintained your normal trivia and few other activities. The talent was average at best. The ports as a whole were very good. Venice for 2 days was very nice. The stop in Slovenia was a pleasant surprise. We took an excursion to Ljubljana, I highly recommend this trip along with seeing Lake Bled. Dubrovnik should be on everyone’s bucket list. We took the Mt Etna excursion from Catania and it was very good but could have been fantastic if the weather would have cooperated. The float into Montenegro was just beautiful but the port itself is filled with pushy sales people pawning sunglasses and excursions so buyer beware!! Argistoli unfortunately is nothing but a giant souvenir shop, Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
When travelers rate a cruise, we can only compare it to others we've been on. For most of us, that means we have a limited perspective from which to judge a cruise, since none of us has traveled on all cruise lines, all ships, or all ... Read More
When travelers rate a cruise, we can only compare it to others we've been on. For most of us, that means we have a limited perspective from which to judge a cruise, since none of us has traveled on all cruise lines, all ships, or all itineraries. My limitation in this review of Oceania's Riviera July 4 - 12 cruise from Venice to Athens is that all my eight prior cruising experiences have been on Silversea ships (Spirit, Muse, Whisper and Shadow). In my case, I found that this Oceania Riviera cruise suffered badly in comparison to my Silversea experiences. This time, I was traveling with friends who persuaded me to join them. They were not cruising veterans and had imagined that a 5.5-rated cruise line would rival a 6.0 line like Silversea. Sadly, for me, it did not. Admittedly, I much prefer small ships, and the Riviera holds 1,250 passengers -- more than twice the capacity of the Spirit or the Muse and more than three times the capacity of the Whisper and the Shadow. I didn't think the difference would be as noticeable as it was, and I did not care for it. By comparison with Silversea's suites, the Riviera's were shabby, even seedy. I ordered room service once -- a Cobb salad for lunch -- and it was abominable, arriving with no salt/pepper, no silverware, and no dressing whatsoever (I'd ordered the dressing on the side). The buffet foods and table service in the Terrace Cafe and the Waves Grill were barely passable, where many wait staff seemed tired and avoided eye contact. I saw there little of the quality or geniality I'm accustomed to in all of Silversea's dining venues. Incredibly irritating was the fact that internet service promised by the Riviera for all guests was unreliable, unpredictable, and nearly half of the time simply unavailable -- something I was unprepared for, accustomed as I have been to Silversea's much better internet connectivity, even on transoceanic cruises. Most of all, the silliness involved in having one's room key checked for the level of beverage plan we'd been pressured to buy on top of the cruise fare whenever we ordered a cocktail or wine at dinner made me feel like I had "turned right" upon boarding the Riviera. In that vein, I observed a greater proportion of heavily inebriated passengers on the Riviera cruise than I've ever seen on a Silversea cruise, giving the impression that, after paying extra for a drinks package, some passengers were committed to "getting their money's worth." For the record, I prefer cruising with cultured people who've led interesting lives and can contribute to conversations on a wide range of topics, not hammer down drinks from morning to night. On the plus side, the food and service at specialty restaurants -- Red Ginger, Polo Grill, and Jacques -- were better than at the Terrace Cafe. The suite cleaners / butlers were competent and pleasant, as were all the reception staff. The two ship-sponsored excursions I chose were led by pleasant and knowledgeable guides. Nonetheless, I look forward to my return to Silversea. Going forward, I will appreciate the Italian small ship cruising experience even more than before. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Recommended by a friend.- learned the hard way that Oceania was less concerned about passengers who did not book through them directly. We booked our airfare and ground transfers through Oceania. When we arrived in Venice at ... Read More
Recommended by a friend.- learned the hard way that Oceania was less concerned about passengers who did not book through them directly. We booked our airfare and ground transfers through Oceania. When we arrived in Venice at approximately 9:00am, we had to collect our luggage and walk what we believe was an unreasonable distance to the bus. We were tired after an 8+ hour flight and did not expect to have to handle our luggage again let alone walk so far in the heat to get the bus! But, that wasn't all! Once we arrived at the Cruise Terminal, there were quite a few Oceania Reps directing us to collect our luggage (once again) from the bus and bring it to the loading area for the ship! Oceania couldn't handle that for the $149.00 each that we paid for the transfer? We found that a taxi ride where we would have avoided the long walk AND dealing with our luggage, cost $45 Euros for 2 people! For this lousy experience we paid $253.00 more? Talk about gouging! Finally, we get into the non-air conditioned terminal where there were ceiling fans that weren't running. Warm water was provided in case anyone was on the verge of passing out from the experience thus far, I presume. Time to wait - a preview of what was to come. We sat there in this stifling terminal for about 45 minutes when the announcements started. Oceania began the process of letting the passengers know their importance based on their cabin number. Registration started with the Owner's Suite, Penthouse Suites and Concierge level cabins. The remaining cabins were told to wait until they were called. We sat there, uncomfortable, watching all of the people that were more valuable customers than us go into their appropriate line and begin to register. Once the important passengers were well on their way to boarding the ship, Oceania turned their attention to us, "all other cabin" passengers - that's what we were referred to. At this point, we were just grateful they didn't sail without us! Upon embarkation, we discovered that we could not go to our cabins. They were not ready. Instead, we were told we could go to the Terrace Cafe for lunch. Unfortunately, we had to continue to lug around whatever carry-ons we had until our cabins were ready. Since our arrival time in Venice was 9:00am, we presumed that we would have the whole day to visit Venice on our own. With all of the delays so far on Oceania's part, that plan was fading quickly. It is now noontime and we are still waiting to be notified that our cabin was ready. And then the notifications began. Once again, the cabins became available based on importance of passengers - Owner's Suite, then Penthouse Suites then Concierge level cabins. "All other cabins" as referred to by Oceania were not made available until 20 minutes to 3! (we referred to them as "steerage" although Oceania would never actually SAY that. It was implied.) So there it was, Oceania cost us our first day in Venice. Regarding the Excursions: After ONE trip on the Riviera, I am now more expert on the Ports of Call than anyone I spoke with at Oceania pre-cruise. Try as I might, I was unable to get ANY information about the Ports of Call to determine if an excursion was necessary or if there would be anything to do at the Ports without booking an excursion. I can now tell anyone who is interested that excursions are NOT NECESSARY at most of the Ports. Venice - The Riviera had a free shuttle to Town - worse case, a short taxi ride Dubrovnik, Croatia - Short walk to the Old Town, shopping, restaurants, etc. Kotor, Montenegro - Free Shuttle to the Old Town every half hour, shopping, restaurants, etc. Valletta, Malta - Short Walk to Elevator (Lift) that takes you up to the Old Town for 1 Euro Round Trip Sicily, Italy - Need an excursion Amalfi, Italy - Short walk to Town area, shopping, restaurants, etc. Rome - Hour plus ride into town Florence - Hour plus ride into town Monte Carlo - Short walk to Town area, shopping, restaurants, Casino, etc. Marseille - Free Shuttle to Town You can never get this information from Oceania! They want you to book the pricey excursions in every Port! Excursions we took: Venice: Nothing more than a small boat ride. We couldn't even take pictures because the boat was so small and low. You couldn't stand up without banging your head. Not to mention the long, unnecessary walk - why couldn't we have taken the Shuttle to the pier? Sicily: Whoever writes the descriptions has a knack for turning nothing into something. The physical effort to climb up to the catacombs isn't worth the effort. I felt so sorry for the people with walking issues. All that they went through to see that? I guess all that matters is that Oceania made a nice chunk of change, right? Amalfi: Couldn't get an excursion for this port. Disappointing, but, perhaps a blessing based on the other "excursions". Rome: The Tour Guide, Richard, blocked off the 2 front rows of seats for his use. When people asked why, he released the left side to paying customers and kept the right side for himself. I guess the jump seat wasn't good enough for him, so, he commandeered 2 of the 4 best seats on the bus for his use - the heck with the people who paid $200.00+ each for this little jaunt. Again, a tremendous amount of unnecessary walking. Why couldn't the bus drop off closer or pick up closer? And why do you make us walk forever to get back on the ship??? Florence: Again, the Tour Guide, Francesca, felt that she deserved the front seat rather than 2 paying customers. Another incredibly long walk from and to the bus and to the ship? Why??? Monte Carlo: Tour Guide sat where she was supposed to. Very memorable experience because of the poor weather. No mention in the description of the straight uphill climb to get to Eze. Marseille: Tour Guide sat where she was supposed to and was very knowledgeable. Too much free time in Cassis and no more than a bus ride through Marseille. Overall, the excursions were very expensive and unremarkable. Way too much walking to and from the bus at the locations. Surely, Oceania could have made that process easier for the passengers. After am 8 or 10 hour day, the walk to the ship could have and should have been shorter. Dining: Most days, we had room service from the very limited menu for breakfast (all cold selections) to make it in time to sit and wait in the Riviera Lounge for an excursion. We subsequently would miss the lunch deadline and had no option other than the Waves Grill (again, very limited selection) - that got old pretty quick. The specialty dining restaurants were very good, but, since we had to take what was available, typically on days with the longest excursions, we were really too tired to enjoy them. And the Canyon Ranch Spa - normally we enjoy a couple of massage treatments each, but, not this time. We went to the Spa to ask if there was a pool and the Spa Representative quipped, "It is only available for Concierge level and above". That was the third strike for us. We walked out and decided not to book any treatments at all. We weren't going to spend another cent with a company who has treated us like second class citizens as soon as the non-refundable payment was received! WiFi - Oceania could never get away with charging for it and they know it! Don't expect to get anything of any consequence done over the internet on this ship! Sleep experience - We would go to sleep cool and wake EVERY morning perspiring. Apparently Oceania turns up the air conditioning in the early morning hours...very sneaky and not unnoticed. Overall, it appeared as though the Staff Members were not allowed to treat people in the "All Other Cabins" category as shabbily as Oceania Corporate does. We were so frustrated with the experiences that we considered cancelling all of the automatic tip amount billed to our stateroom in protest as that was the only money left to take back from Oceania. We decided that we did not want to take it out on the Staff as they didn't make us feel like steerage, their management did. We documented this for 2 reasons - one to make Oceania aware that we aren't going to take this sitting down and two to make it available as a review for other potential passengers considering a "LUXURY" cruise on Oceania. Anything below Concierge level, think twice! Simply put, it is not as good as it sounds. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This was our fourth Oceania cruise and it was the type and quality of a cruise we have come to expect from this cruise line. We can say that we experienced excellent service and top notch quality of food at several of the restaurants on ... Read More
This was our fourth Oceania cruise and it was the type and quality of a cruise we have come to expect from this cruise line. We can say that we experienced excellent service and top notch quality of food at several of the restaurants on board the Riviera. My wife has special medical dietary requirements and all of the food was prepared accordingly and service staff were especially helpful and accommodating with her dietary requirements. The entire ship was very clean and seemed well maintained. We experienced a problem with the plumbing system in our cabin and the maintenance staff stuck with the problem until it was corrected. Several of the the food and beverage staff who waited on us displayed a fun sense of banter with us and it was a pleasure to see them at different venues. Embarkation was perhaps the easiest we have ever experienced. The one difficulty that we experienced was with a so called cruise "Ambassador". We booked a future cruise through her on board this ship. After a day or two later we realized that we had a tight travel insurance deadline with this booking so we returned to her to ask her a few questions about dropping one of the "extras" that we included with our booking. She had told us originally that we could drop the extras "at any time". The "ambassador" suddenly became very defensive and displayed a rather angry demeanor. She grabbed her stack of booking documents and literally tore through them while complaining that we were making her go through extra work. When she found our booking papers she complained that 99% of her customers do not ask what we were asking and then she shifted her line to state that she didn't want us to worry about this issue and spoil our vacation worrying, and that when we returned home our TA could do what we were asking her to do. We tried to explain to her that we were not worried until this very moment as we were concerned about her demeanor and Oceania's apparent disregard for customer booking follow-up. I personally got up to leave her office because the tension between the "ambassador" and I was reaching a boiling point. As we left she smilingly stated that we should just continue to our good times and forget all about our worries. Based upon this experience with one of Oceania's so called "ambassadors" we might not do any more business with these people. We kept the cruise we had booked on board and our TA did drop one of the extras as the future cruise itinerary and the good service we have enjoyed from all of our previous Oceania cruises are factors that we want to look forward to. We just don't want to experience such boiler room tactics again on Oceania or any other cruise line. This experience is what dropped my "On-board Experience" rating from "very good" or even "excellent" down to "average". Also, although I have previously described the service of the rest of the staff as very positive the behavior of this one staff member was so egregious it was enough to change my service opinion to "very good". And Oceania has the gall to call these people "ambassadors". Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
...and the "one thing" is - it was too short! We took a "Medieval Masterpieces" cruise from Venice to Civitavecchia in November 2017. We chose this particular cruise because my husband was celebrating his 80th ... Read More
...and the "one thing" is - it was too short! We took a "Medieval Masterpieces" cruise from Venice to Civitavecchia in November 2017. We chose this particular cruise because my husband was celebrating his 80th birthday during the cruise and it was a "birthday present" - better than a party! We actually had done the same itinerary before but I had been ill so not able to go ashore at all the ports. We took a Vista Suite on Deck 9. More about that later. We live in Switzerland so had the luxury of not having to fly for this cruise. We took a train from Sion direct (no change) to Venice. Got off at Mestre and had a transfer company meet us there to drive us to the ship. (Had we gone on to Venezia S.L. we would have had to haul our bags up/down stairs and onto the "People Mover" and at our age we try to avoid that sort of thing). The driver took our 2 bags to the porters waiting outside the terminal and we then checked in. This took all of 3 minutes. There was no one waiting - it was at 1500 so most people had already checked in. Of course we had the "priority lane" but it was not needed. We had to wait a few minutes to board because the gangway was being re-positioned but by 1515 we were walking down the corridor to our suite - and spotted one of our suitcases being wheeled along ahead of us! The second one arrived 2 minutes later. The Vista Suite is large - has a sitting/dining room, bedroom, 2 baths and a private gym. We did not use the latter! It also has a huge walk in closet, large enough to put a bed really. being in the bow of the ship there are restrictions on the use of the balcony. You are not allowed to have curtains open at night when sailing - the Bridge needs vision with no "light pollution". When underway the wind is fierce and the furniture has to be lashed down. So bear that in mind when choosing this suite. For us - on a very port-intensive cruise - this was not a problem and it was dark by 1800 anyway so we were not out on the balcony. We liked the suite better than the Owners Suite which we had on our last cruise especially the balcony because the two on the Owners Suite are narrow and crammed with furniture. No space! Butler service and steward were impeccable. Just what we expect - in fact a bit more than since they filled the suite with balloons on my husband's birthday! Dining - We ate at the Grand Dining Room for breakfast a couple of times and it was fine. Twice for lunch as well - we had their "Taste of the World" dish, once from Greece and once from India. We like those a lot. And we ordered in from the GDR one evening as well. No complaints. Our favourite restaurant is Jacques. Although we live in a French culture here in Switzerland we think Jacques stacks up very favourably against some of the better restaurants here. The filet de boeuf Rossini is to die for! Tied for second place - Polo and Red Ginger. The meat at Polo was amazing. And at RG we simply order a string of appetisers and eat "Dim Sum" style. We did not eat at Toscana - we have a couple of times in the past and simply do not like it. Portions are too big (even when you ask for a small one) and we prefer northern Italian cuisine anyway. With the Vista Suite you can eat in any speciality restaurant any night you wish - you just ask the Butler to reserve a table. Tours - the only Oceania tour we took was "Taormina on your own" which was essentially a bus transfer to and from Taormina. On a Sunday in Italy when trains don't run on normal schedules this was practical. For the rest we find Oceania tours are way too expensive and prefer to book tours independently. We had a superb walking tour of Zadar with Sime of Art and Nature Travel. Another fabulous tour of Corfu Town through Corfu Walking Tours (our lovely guide, Nausica, surprised my husband with a birthday cake and candles!) and another really good tour of Valetta and Mdina arranged via Amy Pace Tours. These tours with private guides and in one case a car and driver (Malta) cost us far less than taking Oceania group tours would have done. Shipboard activities - We were regulars at tea in Horizons !! But aside from that I am afraid we did not do much. No Trivia, no games, not even a putting competition! But from reading "Currents" it was obvious that the Social Staff were putting on things all day long and for those who chose not to go ashore there was always something to do. We went to one evening show - "Lights, Camera, Action" - which was excellent and we loved every minute. It was very cleverly staged as well. Our Cruise Critic group had a get-together on the second day of the cruise while we were still docked in Venice. We were about 40 people to show up for that and the Cruise Director, Peter, stopped by to welcome us. Much credit goes to "Cool Chili" who organised the whole thing and then had to move it twice (and let people know!) because there were THREE large groups on board who "pre-empted" our planned location. We enjoyed every minute of this cruise - well, maybe aside from one very rough night at sea! Oceania is a great cruise line and the Riviera a wonderful ship to be on. Our next cruise is already booked (but on Regent) but I have no doubt that we shall be back on the Riviera in the not too distant future and most likely on a Mediterranean or Scandinavian cruise. Read Less
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