7 Oceania Regatta Cuba Cruise Reviews

My husband and I love the small ships and have sailed on the old Rennaisance line ships under Princess and Azamara as well as Oceania. The Regatta is scheduled for renovation, and it is sorely needed. They HAVE to do something with the ... Read More
My husband and I love the small ships and have sailed on the old Rennaisance line ships under Princess and Azamara as well as Oceania. The Regatta is scheduled for renovation, and it is sorely needed. They HAVE to do something with the main showroom but it will be a challenge. This cruise was very relaxing, from Miami through the Panama Canal to LA. And we live close to LA so disembarking in Los Angeles is one of the wonderful features of this cruise. Both the service on the ship and the food were terrific. The Entertainment staff was extremely talented and did a great job. If I had a complaint it might have been that both the speakers were covering mainly the same topic, and since there were seven sea days, a little variety would have been appreciated. Also, the ship's choice of movies was dismal, and with seven sea days, a first run movie in the afternoon would not have cost them very much but might have been quite popular. Unfortunately the Ship's personnel had to give us all the government issued warnings on our trip to Havana, such as no "person to person" contact etc. We were scared into taking a bus tour of Havana, one of the ship's excursions and we regretted the choice. It was as bland as it could be. We heard everything the young man was told to tell us, there was no music, no food, no contact with a Cuban other than the guide, no chance to view all the artwork available in the markets. It was boring. We spent over 1/2 hour at the cemetary and that was one of the highlights. Some of the passengers went off on their own and did quite well. We envied them. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
. We have previously sailed on Oceania Sirena twice and we loved both cruises so much we couldn’t wait to get on board Regatta, what a disaster this turned out to be. During the mandatory life boat drill in San Francisco all the ... Read More
. We have previously sailed on Oceania Sirena twice and we loved both cruises so much we couldn’t wait to get on board Regatta, what a disaster this turned out to be. During the mandatory life boat drill in San Francisco all the passengers, mostly quite elderly were made to stand around in the sun while a long and totally unintelligent broadcast was made about regulations regarding Cuba, which was sixteen days distant, totally unnecessary. We choose this cruise in particular for the ports of call but before we even sailed we were told that three of the destinations we most wanted to see had been cancelled because of a hurricane that was moving up the Mexican coast, as it turned out by the time we should have got to Cabo San Lucas the hurricane had already passed through, we visited Acapulco and then sailed straight to Costa Rica and despite spending four days at sea we arrived five hours late, all the tours bar two were cancelled and the tour we went on was supposed to be a scenic tour consisted of a three hour drive in the dark with a ten minute stop to watch some dancers, it was cold dark and treacherous, with most of us finding nowhere to sit. Disembarkation was a nightmare as it ran over an hour late, and some passengers missed their flights. The food on the whole was very disappointing, if you didn’t like Mexican food - tough ! Our cabin was poorly laid out, there was nowhere to sit apart from on the bed, but it did have a round glass table which just got in the way, with no chairs, what’s the point! Most of the entertainment, with three exceptions was pretty poor, and the worst Cruise Director we have ever sailed with, brash and boring! All the other passengers I spoke to were similarly diasenchanted with the total misinformation from the bridge, no one believed a word of what was said, and no mention of recompense for such a dreadful cruise, our worst ever!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My wife and I are frequent cruisers and chose this cruise as an alternative to the all inclusive lines where we always are charged for something we don't take part in. We also used this cruise to determine if we wanted to hold or ... Read More
My wife and I are frequent cruisers and chose this cruise as an alternative to the all inclusive lines where we always are charged for something we don't take part in. We also used this cruise to determine if we wanted to hold or cancel a 45 day trip on this ship next year out of New Zealand & the South Pacific. Our embarkation in Miami was swift and without incident. Our first port out of Miami was Havana which was absolutely wonderful. Then things started to go downhill, as we did not touch land for the next 5 days. My number one complaint with Regatta was that the ship has trouble maintaining its published schedule. On the previous cruise the ship missed at least one port and was 3 to 4 hours late into Nassau. On leaving Havana we were told that we would be several hours late into our next port, Cartagena, Columbia due to "minor technical difficulties" (a good friend says this is code for "we are now going to lie to you"). We did not have a long scheduled call in Cartagena and sure enough we arrived just after lunch and departed almost an hour later, without ever going to a dock or even dropping the anchor. You could see it but not touch it. The canal was fantastic as always, but the next port was Costa Rica, a much appreciated stop. The following port in Nicaragua was missed account political unrest, code for rioting. Oceania must get a pass as it is out of their control. Subsequent stops were in Acapulco and Cabo. Low and behold, we were about 45 minutes late into Cabo. A trend is developing .... On leaving Cabo San Lucas it quickly became apparent that we would not be on time into San Francisco. The ship provides basic navigation data (Chanel 3 on the room TV) and it was not too hard to do a speed and distance calculation on the number of hours needed to travel the remaining distance. 36 hours later the ship admitted what I already knew and then the natives became very restless when it was obvious that they would miss flights in San Fran (my wife and I were continuing on to Alaska). Off of LA the ship diverted around military maneuvers making the late train later. Any ship making a passenger change out needs to arrive around 6 AM to have max time to swap, clean and provision. Our San Fran arrival was at 2:30 PM, and it was a disaster. After arrival we were told to sit in the show lounge to await clearance. This took about 1.5 to 2 hours during which almost no announcements were made. We later learned that US Customs was to blame, but no one came on to blame them and comfort the rapidly rising blood pressures. We later learned that those getting on were equally frustrated and I'll bet that there is a review out there from one of those folks. When we finally got off, we (through passengers - there were about 40) were given a much shortened bus tour of San Francisco. On returning we were greeted by a mob scene of new passengers trying to board. We reboarded, cleaned up and went to the city for dinner rather than face those mad folks, some of whom never got the word that the ship would be late. Later we learned that we would spend the night in San Francisco and leave at 10 am and would, again, miss another port - Astoria, Oregon, one which we had greatly looked forward to. After missing that port, things got back on schedule. On the last port we did leave 2 hours early to make our last port of Vancouver, on time. In all we missed 25% of our scheduled ports. We had planned on a full day in San Fran, instead we got off close to 5 PM and had to be on board the next morning at 9 AM. I spoke with ships management about the delays, as many others did as well. The delays were blamed on weather. Yes, we had headwinds, but as I pointed out, any ship should have head winds 50% of the time. I refused the excuse and using facts about missed ports simply explained that that many missed ports (search other reviews on this site as well) indicates a problem. One of two statements is true: The ship cannot maintain tight schedules account mechanical issues OR the team responsible for planning and scheduling has made grave errors and not allowed for any "wiggle room" on longer segments. Overall, the missed ports and lateness really ruined the cruise for us. We have been on crossings (Atlantic) with fewer sea days. On board though the rest of the cruise was very good to excellent. On board service was excellent. We never had an issue. The service staff, largely Filipino and Indonesian was better than many of the ultra luxury lines. This great service was in bars, restaurants, cabin service etc. The quality of the food in the specialty restaurants was excellent. 5 stars for both. The buffets and main restaurants had a few issues. I would rate these at about 4 stars. The only bad item encountered was pizza which looked like the stuff you buy in an American convenience store. Related to the food is a problem that can't be solved. Both segments were full. On arrival at the Veranda buffet, you knew it. There wasn't a table to be found unless you hovered waiting for someone to get up or eat at an odd time. This held true for breakfast and lunch and I'm not sure about dinner as we are not buffet eaters at dinner. Yes, we could storm the door upon opening but that is not our style. When you did get a table you faced a mass of people at the food stations and there wasn't much room to move. My wife and I purchased a beverage package. Having sailed on all inclusive lines, we didn't want to worry about every drink. If we want only an additional 1/2 glass of wine, at the end of dinner then no problem. The problem occurs that having paid for the beverage package, you still had to present your room card. We were told that this was for accounting and inventory control. After several days the crew knew we had the package, yet we had to always present at least one card, a real pain when you are trying to get up and go. Approaching San Francisco I tried to get a beer with lunch. Oh no - it didn't happen. Despite having paid for it the system closed to the old passengers as they prepared for the new. Real reason - once they closed out the old they couldn't charge them anymore. There was zero accommodation for those of us going through. Luckily, I bought a bottle of rum in Havana, so we retreated to the room and opened it! Overall the ship is showing its 20 years of age, though Oceania works to keep it up. The interior is beautiful with fine woodwork and paintings. Carpets have an Oriental theme, public chairs are plush though some areas show signs of aging, with torn lamp shades and other minor things. Outside, you won't find much rust, though you will find many layers of paint which indicate repeated paintings. The pool had 1 inch square tiles which were falling off in mass. The crew was gluing back plastic replacements, which were again falling off. Our travel agent warned us not to expect much for entertainment. We found that she was wrong as we enjoyed almost all of the entertainment, including the ships shows (we saw them all twice). However, like the Veranda, if there was a popular show you better arrive early as the lounge did not accommodate everyone. On at least 2 nights we left because there were no seats available. Another note needs to be addressed that was a negative, though possibly unavoidable incident. The ship underwent a GI "protocol". Yes - the Norovirus appeared. We knew something was up leaving Acapulco when the cruise director came on the noon updated suggesting that anyone with stomach issues report to the doctor for a free consultation. Given a previous Oceania experience (see my January review on the Riviera) the treatment would not be free. Within 24 hours, full protocol was in effect. The ship took away things that multiple folks would touch. Not nuts trays or appetizers with cocktails. No cream, sugar, salt pepper or bread trays. No water set out for anyone to take. No menus in leather holders. On arrival, tables were bare and staff brought everything, but left nothing. Through it all both the fitness center and casino remained open, which I found interesting. The protocol or reactive management is set by CDC. However, reviews on this site indicate that this is not a first for Regatta. Passengers who showed symptoms were quarantined for 48 hours. In one case they escaped and security had to run them down. The protocol went until 2 days north of San Francisco when things gradually returned to normal. In total we had 5 days of limited service. The protocal also called for extra cleaning in San Francisco which further added to the woes of being late with new passengers arriving. We also found that the dress code on Oceania left something to be desired. The line allows shorts after 6 anywhere except the dining room(s). You can also wear baseball caps. Most dressed nicely, but there are always a few who have to take full advantage. Many dressed nicely for the specialty restaurants, but it was not enjoyable to be in the bar with a coat and tie on sitting next to an individual in a jogging suit with his hat on backwards. We enjoyed a penthouse with butler service. The room was wider which made a big difference. See the review below. In conclusion, this may not be the line for us. We have many nights on Seabourn, Crystal and Regent. All are all inclusive though all have been taking big price increases. I suspect that we will be back at some point though it will be in a Penthouse or Oceania Suite on one of the 2 larger ships. And, it won't likely be a long voyage. If you are moving up from Celebrity, Holland America, RCL or NCL, you will most likely love Oceania. Due to the feeling of being cramped at public venues, (plus the other listed issues) we just don't like it. Oceania puts almost 700 people into a 30,000 ton vessel while Seabourn has less than 500 in the same tonnage ship. New Zealand trip canceled. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Our 16 day cruise from Miami to San Francisco spent 88% of the time at sea, not at the destinations Spending $800+ per day on fine dining is not my idea of an enjoyable cruise. Destination Services were overpriced, poorly conceived and ... Read More
Our 16 day cruise from Miami to San Francisco spent 88% of the time at sea, not at the destinations Spending $800+ per day on fine dining is not my idea of an enjoyable cruise. Destination Services were overpriced, poorly conceived and poorly organized. Cuisine was excellent and service impeccable. Cabins were small 216 sf and tight Bathrooms even tighter. We were aboard Regatta, a 20 year old ship past her prime. We lost one of the 4 engines 3 hours out of Miami and could not make Cartegena on time, so didn't stop there. 63 students were killed by the military the night before we were to land in Nicaragua, so we skipped that. (Shouldn't Management in Miami have foreseen this and made alternative plans?) Our room air conditioning did not work properly even after being repaired, the woodwork needed refurbishing- looked 'dirty' and the cabin carpet could have been replaced. We were 7 hours late docking in San Francisco and then we were next to last to get off after asking for priority disembarkation so we wouldn't miss our plane. Took 2 hours to get off the ship and we missed 2 flights. To cap it all off, Oceania added $32/day or $512 to our bill at the end of the cruise for 'housekeeping gratuities'. And this on a $16,000 cruise! ONCE OCEANIA GETS YOUR MONEY, THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT YOU AS A PERSON. WE WERE HERDED LIKE CATTLE AND WE FELT DISCRIMINATED AGAINST... NEVER AGAIN ON OCEANIA Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and our previous experience on Oceania. However, our cruise on the Regatta left much to be desired. We found the service in the Main Dining Room to be extremely slow. The General Manager aboard ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and our previous experience on Oceania. However, our cruise on the Regatta left much to be desired. We found the service in the Main Dining Room to be extremely slow. The General Manager aboard indicated that their goal is 1-3/4 hours to 2 hours per table for dinner. We had 2 dinners where it took over 2-1/2 hours to finish. I attribute this to a lack of staff as while the dining room staff were enthusiastic and personable they were running around trying to service their tables. The staff in Polo also seemed to be under staffed and the servers were slow in responding and mixed the orders on more than one occasion. Overall, the quality of the food was very good, however, several times the meats were overcooked and dry. We had the unfortunate experience on an onboard medical emergency that required the ship to turn around and head back to the Hawaiian islands to rendezvous with a helicopter to medevac the patient. This caused the ship to lose about 25 hours and as a result Oceania decided to drop 2 ports of call: Cabo San Lucas and Guatemala. Interestingly enough the Oceania Marina had the same itinerary as the Regatta from San Diego through the Panama Canal, but they stopped at every port that we were scheduled to stop at and even had more port time than we were to have. Many passengers felt that Regatta could have made up the requisite time and only dropped one port, not two. The communications between the Captain and the passengers left much to be desired. It started when everyone came aboard and found that the ship was being sanitized from an apparent Noro Virus that developed on the previous segment. There was no official explanation of the problem and no continuing updates as to the progress in rectifying the problem. The shore excursions were, for the most part, only fair. In many ports they were shortened even though there was more time in port. It seemed that the ship wanted to leave port as soon as possible. In some ports the tours were not as described in the brochures. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Long Review We were apprehensive to try our first step up from mainstream cruising. Oceania came highly recommended by some friends of ours who share our taste in food, service and fellow travelers. Despite a rocky start, this was ... Read More
Long Review We were apprehensive to try our first step up from mainstream cruising. Oceania came highly recommended by some friends of ours who share our taste in food, service and fellow travelers. Despite a rocky start, this was the best cruise we have ever taken. Due to a norovirus outbreak on the previous segment we boarded a little late and spent several days under strict CDC sanitation guidelines (we have experienced this before). Also our itinerary was upset and we missed a few ports due to a need to turn the ship back to Hawaii in order to medivac a passenger who became ill. We lost about 26 hours, spending an extra sea day in the Pacific and we had to forego Cabo San Lucas and Guatemala from our itinerary. Honestly - we understood and while it’s disappointing and inconvenient - it did not impact our enjoyment of the trip at all. Embarkation: We were notified by email early that day of the delay in boarding and boarded late about 2:00 pm and had to wait to enter our cabin for a couple of hours. While waiting we met the first of many amazing staff, Todor from Bulgaria who was a bartender/barista. Our cabin 7099 was aft and starboard. The cabin was small but adequate. More of a matter of laughter than complaint .. I think the shower in our travel trailer is bigger. We had a *Concierge Level cabin. The bed is VERY COMFORTABLE. The ships is old but really elegant and homey. Built in 1998 but maintained pretty well considering its age. Holding only 680 passengers it’s quite a bit smaller than what we are used to. AND WE LOVED IT. Lots of dark wood and comfortable furniture all over the ship, reminiscent of a European parlour. There are so many things about Oceania that set them apart from the mainstream cruise lines. Here are some of the things we personally loved that they did NOT HAVE and some thoughts: 1) No photographers or photo galleries 2) No towel animals on the bed 3) No loud music or silly games at the pool 4) No dancing or singing waiters (except a very few Happy Birthdays) 5) No up charges for specialty dining, coffees or bottled water 6) No excessive announcements in cabin from the cruise director 7) No formal night and most everyone looked very sharp in “country club casual” 8) No kids (they are allowed but there are no amenities specifically for them) 9) No hard sell of tours, unwanted cocktails, merchandise (but all available) 10) No reservations needed for dinner in the main dining room Here’s the short list of all the things Oceania HAS that we really loved and some thoughts: 1) Every single crew member from a maintenance worker to maitre’d was cordial and friendly beyond belief. Many of whom know your name by day 2 and are always smiling. 2) Food quality was superb. Portions were perfect. Truly the best cuisine at sea we have ever experienced. One night we had calm seas and had room service dinner on our balcony ... the filet mignon was cooked to perfection.* *Concierge level cabins may order room service from the main dining room menu as well as the regular room service menu. 3) Specialty restaurants by reservation and after that you can make a last minute reservation if they have space. Both are adventures in slow eating ..... and I mean that in a good way. A really good meal should never be rushed. Most nights we went to Polo or Toscana we spent 2 hours over dinner with cocktails, 4 course meals and desserts. 4) Beverage package + $20 per day per person upgrade. Cocktails with top shelf brands and really wonderful wines by the glass making it unnecessary to buy wine by the bottle. We did pay corkage for an exquisite bottle we brought onboard for one evening ($25 corkage fee including decanting and a very slow pace of consumption ...the sommeliers did not rush our pours and helped us enjoy the bottle of wine our way. Our favorite bartender Anna from Ukraine can make you the best Singapore Sling. 5) Cabin stewards unlike any we have encountered. Friendly, non intrusive, happy to do anything for you. Our cabin was kept impeccable and they were always on top of any little maintenance issues we told them of. (Older ship.. some hinges were loose, a shower head needed replacing and the heat wasn’t working properly one day... all RESOLVED immediately by Desy and Nilesh. 6) Bridge lessons and duplicate bridge as well as rubber (party) bridge on every sea day .. even on the Panama Canal day (extra bonus) ... our bridge instructors Kay and Darwin Afdahl were so accommodating and such good instructors. We are beginners but they made us feel so welcome and we learned so much. I hope they continue to offer bridge on many more sailings. 7) Did I mention the FOOD? 8) The gym is excellent too. State of the art equipment - sufficient variety of machines and weights and floor space for the size of the ship. Morning stretch classes were frequented by many and the locker rooms and steam room is heaven. 9) Thassotherapy pool forward of the spa for *Concierge level and up was very relaxing yet NOT HOT ENOUGH 10) Two hot tubs (with no kids) were also very relaxing but NOT HOT ENOUGH .... that was our one complaint. We were told max was 104 but they were always around 85-90 degrees. We have a hot tub at home and need that daily soak for our aches and pains so this was a disappointment. We asked a maintenance worker twice but it was never adjusted. 11) Free internet. If even for just one account. This made the trip far more enjoyable for communicating with friends and family back home and although it’s was very slow, it was very much appreciated. Excursions) We did only book one excursion via the ship in Acapulco. I have to say we were disappointed in the tour. We generally find tours are a better value on our own. Fellow Passengers) The demographic of this cruise was definatly older than most cruises we have been on - so I think the entertainment is more geared toward that. We are 58 and 66 and enjoyed most of the on board entertainment, although I think there is room for improvement considering the tariff of an Oceania sailing. Personally I would like to see the show band hire a singer and provide more opportunity to dance to the American songbook type music. A few more comments: We really loved the ambience and we met far more fellow passengers than normal due to the size of the ship and small number of passengers. On disembarkation day we were all running around the ships trying to say goodbye to new friends. The lecturers on board were drawing big crowds every day and well appreciated and if you missed the talk you could get a re-run on the cabin tv. The library was extensive and beautiful. The chairs and loungers by the pool are WONDERFUL and relaxing and comfortable. The Internet cafe seemed mostly unused now that most people have laptops and iPads The smoking section was too close to the only pool bar and the door leading in/out of the gym... terrible placement. No escaping the whiff of second hand smoke. 24 nights flew by .... we booked another voyage before we left the ship and are looking forward to our 2nd Oceania cruise to South America. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
It had the itinerary that I was interested in. My cabin mate and I were quarantined for 48hrs prior to reaching Honolulu and then advised that because I was still symptomatic we would continue to be isolated for another 48hrs and kept ... Read More
It had the itinerary that I was interested in. My cabin mate and I were quarantined for 48hrs prior to reaching Honolulu and then advised that because I was still symptomatic we would continue to be isolated for another 48hrs and kept in isolation until I was no longer was symptomatic. She had no GI symptoms, only myself That was an unworkable option for me since I suffer from acute claustrophobia which morphs into anxiety attacks probably caused by PTSD. I'm a Vietnam veteran which explains the PTSD. It was recommended by the ship's doctor that we disembark in Honolulu which we did. We had upgraded to a Penthouse Suite 10 days prior to Honolulu for an additional $4,000 that became available in Honolulu. Our belongings were transferred from cabin 7115 to 8022 in Honolulu after we docked. CDC came onboard and conducted required sanitation procedures. While this was being done we were released from quarantine and I checked into the Tripler Medical Center Emergency facility (VA Hospital) for further evaluation and lab tests that took three hours. We returned to the Regatta and packed our suitcases located in the new cabin. We were in our new cabin for 35 minutes while we accomplished that task and then were escorted off the ship and checked into a hotel in Honolulu. We were advised by the Executive Concierge that none of the monies spent on the cruise even the $4K would be recoverable. There were many pax in the lobby waiting for their cabins to be ready, some requesting cabin upgrades. Obviously 8022 was now available so they flipped our cabin for another $4-6K before the ship left port. As I indicated, the food and staff were superb, the entertainment average and the land excursions below average. Guest speaker for the cruise was Adam Tanner who was also superb! Because of the horrible mishandling and the way we were treated.........it was apparent that those making decisions wanted us off the ship, I'm giving Oceania Cruises an "F". Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Regatta Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.0
Dining 5.0 4.2
Entertainment 3.5 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.8
Family 2.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.2
Enrichment 4.5 3.5
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.5 3.5
Rates 4.0 4.0

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