350 Oceania Riviera Luxury Cruise Reviews

On the whole, the cruise was very very good and the itinerary (which I credit Oceania with putting together) was excellent. However, for a line and ship that bill themselves as a luxury line, I just don't think they lived up to it. ... Read More
On the whole, the cruise was very very good and the itinerary (which I credit Oceania with putting together) was excellent. However, for a line and ship that bill themselves as a luxury line, I just don't think they lived up to it. Our most recent cruises prior to this were with Celebrity on Solstice class ships and I found the ship experience on those better, and not necessarily because of the size. We were in a concierge veranda cabin. It was well appointed with a wide variety of storage locations to accommodate even long cruises. The double tub setup of the bathroom leaves me scratching my head a bit. It would seem that for most a larger singular shower might be more appropriate for a cabin of this size. This didn't create a negative experience, but it seems...redundant. As we were sailing next door to my parents, they requested the balconies be opened to each other which you could tell can physically be done. However, Oceania apparently has a policy preventing this. It wasn't a huge deal (though my father ran it up the chain), but is this something that only Oceania does? We have (admittedly a long time ago) had balconies opened together. Oceania bills itself as a food line, and for the most part they're correct. We ate at Toscana, Polo Grill, Jacuqes, and La Reserve. With the exception of Polo, they were great. Polo wasn't bad, but for a steak place, the steak was the poorest part of the meal which just shouldn't happen. Their buffet is also very well done and the quality (including made to order items) was fine there. Though food does blend itself into drink. We had booked the standard drink package as our perk and upgraded on day 1. For the most part this was great. It even lets you sample things that might be $25+ on the menu for "free". However, where it got a little odd was with wine by the glass. For the most part at the buffet (and at Toscana) it worked well. However, on the first day we visited the grand dining room. There, when greeted by the sommelier he tried to sell us on the value of bottles wine that "follows you around the ship". When we told him we were just going to drink by the glass, you might as well have thought we shot his dog. Now to be fair, that gentleman did fill our glasses reasonably well a few times, but (and I'm speculating here) the compensation for wine by the glass must not be anything to write home about. Some servers wouldn't even bother to swipe our card and they certainly wouldn't per-glass. This one guy though earned the nickname of "mean wine guy". It wasn't a huge thing, but because we saw him day 1 it left a bit of a bad taste in our mouths (so to speak). Other sommeliers who we talked to seemed to know exactly who we meant when we brought it up in conversation later. As far as ports go, Oceania got us there, and then we did it all ourselves. Shore excursions are overpriced from the line, so get yourself private tours instead. There were a few tender ports early in the cruise and when done port-side (as in Santorini) it worked well. When the ship was in charge, they ran out of water at the waiting line in 95 degree heat and waited 5-10 minutes for more people as we baked within the tender. They could look into a little more customer service. Related to excursions, the destination services folks were a chore to deal with. When I first talked with them about our post-cruise Oceania-booked hotel they said they didn't have anything listed for us, but that more information was "in the back". This caused us to contact our TA who called Oceania who said all was fine and that the desk people have "bad data". Sure, maybe...but isn't it their job not to have bad data? And hey, guess what, when we got to the hotel post-cruise, they couldn't find our reservations. It got sorted out (name spelling issues), but...come on. A separate issue was related to canceling an excursion after a port change. It was eventually handled by a supervisor, but the desk was less than helpful. And then later when actually getting refunds for the cancellation, the desk was abandoned during hours they were open. There was also the minor issue where they credited a refund to 2 different accounts, but again it got sorted out. Now, with all that said, everything above was a nitpick. The vacation was fun. The cruise was a great experience. I would go again. I might or might not sail Oceania again. I don't really feel the price premium is worth it (even after factoring in the food bonuses). All I'm saying is careful consider what you're looking for before you assume that the word luxury means better. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We just concluded Oceania's cruise from Venice to Athens on the "Riviera". Among over 1,000 passengers were only 5-6 young ones; the rest were senior citizens in their '70s. There were no poolside (or anywhere else) ... Read More
We just concluded Oceania's cruise from Venice to Athens on the "Riviera". Among over 1,000 passengers were only 5-6 young ones; the rest were senior citizens in their '70s. There were no poolside (or anywhere else) activities, nothing happening after dinner other than listening to old folks talking about the menu or their retirement. Awfully dull. The menu at the ship's restaurants was fine if eating is a passenger's sole reason for going on a cruise. The captain's (Captain Flokos) judgment was poor; upon arrival in Mykonos where the winds were strong in the morning (a very common occurrence in Mykonos), he simply elected to skip that port altogether and, instead, forced all passengers to 24 hours of ship confinement running around the sea/ Instead, he could have: a) Waited for the wind to die down (the local summer wind, called meltemi always dies down in the evening) and let the passengers out for a pleasant evening in Mykonos), or b) Gone to another nearby port (Athens was only three hours away,. and so were mahy other Greek islands), or c) Proceeded to the next scheduled stop in Santorinini for an extra day there. d) Have made arrangements ahead of time for the ship to have landed on the pier for direct access to the island without needing boats to transport passengers between the ship and land. "Excursions" at each of the ports visited were ill-conceived because passengers were required to be back on the ship by 3-4 pm, even though the next port of call was, in most cases, only 2-3 hours away and could be easily reached during the night. There was no good reason to force passengers to leave each Greek island visited at 3pm. Instead, passengers could have had the pleasure of spending much more time to each port of call (Santorini, Dubrovnik, etc.). Oceania company deserves all the blame for such poor planning. The ship's customer service staff were uniformly aloof and rude and self-righteous, as if they were doing passengers a favor by addressing passengers' concerns. They forgot that, in the final analysis, it was the passengers who paid their salaries. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Doesn't matter which ship you take on Oceania; some people prefer the larger (1250 passengers), other the smaller (650 passengers), but always first class service and food. None of this comes inexpensively, so what's to complain ... Read More
Doesn't matter which ship you take on Oceania; some people prefer the larger (1250 passengers), other the smaller (650 passengers), but always first class service and food. None of this comes inexpensively, so what's to complain about? There were a lot of families with kids on this cruise. Whoooops, not much for kids to do on Oceania. Someone gave them bad advice to take this line, it is geared to 50 somethings and above IMHO. Food and service were excellent. I don't understand Sue Traveller's criticism, but each to their own. (Don't understand her complaint that she could not book more meals in the specialty restaurants, people were doing it on a space available basis once all had a chance to book the restaurants.) We completed our 5th Oceania cruise, with two more booked in the future. That's the best recommendation I can give. We have not been on Regent or other "all inclusive super-premium" lines, but then I really don't want to pay for someone's over-drinking, over the top booze consumption. I'd rather pay for what I use. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
The cabin, ports, dining and service delivered by Oceania were superb, providing us with a wonderful 12 day cruise that created the trip of a lifetime. We are experienced and frequent overseas travellers, but had always been hesitant ... Read More
The cabin, ports, dining and service delivered by Oceania were superb, providing us with a wonderful 12 day cruise that created the trip of a lifetime. We are experienced and frequent overseas travellers, but had always been hesitant about the cruise experience, due to concerns about the quality of meals, and the "tour bus" experience. But from the moment you walk on to Riviera and see the grant staircase you know you are in the lap of luxury. Every aspect of the ship delivered a fantastic attention to detail and class from the bars and restaurants, to the corridors, cabins and afternoon tea in Horizons, and the staff waiting with water as you disembark, then cold towels and lemonade when you return. The cabin was much bigger than we expected and very well appointed. Service here was superb. We returned from breakfast to find beds made and cabins tidied, and from dinner to find the room ready for sleep with notices on the next days tours. Cleaning and attention to detail here was superb and room service super quick - about 7 minutes to deliver a pot of tea, 15 for a meal. Meals were good, some very good, though they did not meet expectations for the claim to be the "finest dining any sea". Red Ginger in particular was a disappointment as it tried, unsuccessfully, to cover all Asian cuisine, though the service was impeccable. Polo Grill was an average steak house, albeit in a magnificent setting and Toscana was standard Italian food. Only Jacques offered something special, but even here this was not the greatest meal we'd ever had. The best meal, by far was the La reserve wine dinner - unlike the others this comes at additional cost but it was worth it, some very good wines, great food and a very special night. However the regular restaurants exceeded expectations, especially Terrace Cafe with its freshly grilled seafood, fresh sushi and salads, and a setting that, especially at breakfast, delivered a meal under the sun framed against a port backdrop.The Grand Dining Room also delivered a very good experience the times we ate there - magnificent service and very good meals. The highlight was the daily afternoon tea in Horizons, a very classy affair with waiters in white gloves bringing around pastries and tea while the string quarter played. Our one complaint would be about the lack of fresh milk, which somewhat dimmed the overall experience. Note to cruise ship operators UHT milk is revolting and NEVER a substitute. Baristas was a welcome chance to have a decent coffee, but again, ruined by UHT milk in the latte. Wine prices are absurd, astronomical prices for some very average wines. One comparison - a very ordinary Australian red which retails for about $US10 in Australia was being offered for $US70 after the compulsory gratuity. Only those wines exceeding the $US100 price point seemed to be especially good. You can bring your own, but there is a $25 charge (which is actually worth it, given their prices). However, there is maximum of 3 bottles per cruise. We did not take part in any of the entertainment, which seemed underwhelming, and while we appreciated the string quartet, they were clearly not very good. However we signed up to the two wine tastings. Little pricey but overall a good chance to taste some different wines and learn a little about them. There is just one pool, which at times becomes very crowded, but seems to do the job with waiters constantly delivering drinks and food and freshening up towels. The gym is quite small, but seems to cope with the demand. Onboard laundries were handy, though the 25 minute cycle on the machine was hopeless at getting stains out. Washing machine and dryers operated on token purchased with $US bills from machines or purchased at reception. A very good way of keeping clothes clean and costs down. Shore excursions are absurdly priced at around $US120 for a basic 4 hour bus tour - that said the two we took, to Diros Caves and on Santorini were very good, with great guides and a superb experience. The ports chosen were mostly brilliant - Venice, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Santorini, Rhodes, Patmos and Athens were all wonderful. Gytheion surprised with the wonderful Diros Caves tour, though Ancona was a waste of time. Koper itself was underwhelming but was a great jump off point for Lake Bled and Ljubljana. Our few complaints would be that our cabin was flooded one night. These things happen but communication was very bad, and we had to find this out ourselves, and force the ship to take action when we returned to our room to discover a blower going full blast on a soaking floor. They could not move us as the ship was full, but eventually came good with quick action to dry the floor, and a $400 shipboard credit. As mentioned meals were very good, though not as good as promoted and the lack of fresh milk was a disappointment (we bought our own in port and kept it in the fridge and then smuggled it to restaurants for when we had tea). Wifi was appalling - very slow and dropping out repeatedly, often for hours. However, that may well be the standard experience of wifi at sea. We still appreciated the fact it came free, and we could keep in touch through email and Facebook, so, it did the job. Overall this was a magnificent cruise - wonderful service, good food, great ports and a superb cabin. We'll be back. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We chose this review for the itinerary, hoping for an upscale smaller ship. 1) My primary reason for given this such a poor review was that the staff was really not great. This has to be the first cruise where we encountered absolutely ... Read More
We chose this review for the itinerary, hoping for an upscale smaller ship. 1) My primary reason for given this such a poor review was that the staff was really not great. This has to be the first cruise where we encountered absolutely unfriendly staff. Most of them did not want to be there it felt like. Only our room attendant & the gentleman staffing the gym, were charming and always offering a smile. The first incident, lost luggage, took 4 hours to resolve because reception could not connect the dots between a customer calling for a lost bag and the bag sitting behind his counter. When confronted, he said, well I can't know it's your bag :/ Another example is the gentleman working in the concierge lounge. I'm sorry I am not as amusing as what is on your phone, but I assumed that your job was to help people and not look at Instagram.... 2) Food and beverage. In general, was OK. Was not wowed. Often was slow in dining areas to get served wine so you are stuck waiting for sommelier to come over. Also, we traveled with a friend who had special dietary needs and it was painful to watch Oceania try and get this right. Meal after meal. Day after day. McDonald's could have done a better job accommodating this. 3) Missed a port due to weather. Not really their fault, but set a tone for the cruise. 4) Shore excursions are ridiculously overpriced to the point where it's comical. Book your own. 5) Drink package is silly. Only during meal times on the basic...and no spirits, etc. The value wasn't there. Considering I have been trying for over a year (unsuccessfully!) to be removed from their mailing list, I shouldn't have been surprised. For the price, just no. Look elsewhere. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
First the positives: The food, the food, and the food As a lobster lover, my goal was to eat some form of lobster every day and I succeeded in that goal! Despite what others have written, Toscana was our absolute favorite and we ... Read More
First the positives: The food, the food, and the food As a lobster lover, my goal was to eat some form of lobster every day and I succeeded in that goal! Despite what others have written, Toscana was our absolute favorite and we were happy we were able to get a second reservation there toward the end of our cruise. It almost seemed as if the wait staff tried extra hard to provide an excellent experience due to the mostly negative reviews they have received lately. We loved the various olive oil selections provided to accompany the bread basket and between the 4 of us dining over the course of 2 nights we tried most of the hot and cold appetizers (one particularly hungry night we each ordered a hot and cold appetizer in addition to a pasta course and an entree) My absolute favorite entree was the Lobster fra diavolo. It was perfectly prepared in a very fresh tasting sauce and was not at all messy to devour. The fish selections as well as the pasta courses were also excellent Jacques was also a gastronomic feast. Our waiter Manuel was absolutely wonderful, so much so that we gave him a generous tip and sang his praises to the Manager. The food here was beautifully presented and perfectly cooked especially the various fish and shell fish selections. The restaurant is also very pretty. Polo Grill was good with some room for improvement The crab cake appetizer was top notch as was the whole main lobster, but the beef and meet selections fell short of expectations The Porterhouse and NY Strip were merely ok and the Rack of Lamb curiously lacked any discernible flavor. Red Ginger was by far our worst dining experience. The service was actually terrible and could not have been any slower. It took nearly 3 hours to complete the meal including half an hour for appetizers to arrive and and another 45 minutes before the main course appeared. We were seated near the front door and there were also several very angry people waiting for their reservations to be honored enduring waits of more than 30 minutes. Several just gave up and left and presumably went to the buffet or the grand dining room. The food here was merely okay and nowhere near as good as the myriad Asian restaurants we frequent in NYC. Grand Dining Room service at breakfast was extremely slow the 3 mornings we were there despite the fact that the dining room was nearly empty. Breakfast selections sound better than they are and I actually preferred breakfast at the Terrace Cafe. We ate dinner here twice. Unlike the specially retaurants, the selections here change nightly. The first night we enjoyed everything we ate including the steak, fish and lobster selections. The last night we went toward the end of the cruise, the selections were disappointing. Terrace Cafe Great place to grab a quick breakfast. Excellent selection of fresh fruits and berries Fantastic French toast as well as lox and pretty much anything you can think of to eat for breakfast. We only went here the last night on board for dinner because we got back to the ship late and had to pack and that was a mistake. The food offered that night for dinner was absolutely an excellent surprise! There were several stations where you can order dishes prepared to your liking including the grill offering lobster tails jumbo shrimp swordfish as well as chicken and steaks. The great thing about the Terrace Cafe is that despite being a buffet, guests are not permitted to touch serving spoons and help themselves--there are multiple servers at each area who serve you with gloved hands-a much more sanitary way for certain. And last but not least, the coffee and cappuccino offered everywhere was absolutely fantastic, especially at Baristas On the plus side The ship is very clean, very well maintained and beautifully decorated without being garish. The cabins are also large (we were in class B3 cabins) well appointed and designed with plenty of closet, drawer shelf and room in the bathroom for everything. Beds are also very comfortable and there are plenty of high quality towels provided as well as great robes. Curiously, we had to beg to get additional shampoo, conditioner and lotion This was never automatically replaced after it ran out and on one occasion we had to make several requests before it was replenished. The negatives: Staff at the reception desk is surly at best and not well informed. Upon embarkation,and check in we asked several questions and each was met with : That is answered in The Current (the daily newsletter) Which we found when we finally got to our cabin Either the staff is totally uninformed, or couldn't be bothered to answer our questions. Also, more than one employee in the reception area does not speak intelligible English. Tender ports: BEWARE do not sail on Oceania if they stop at a tender port you really want to visit. We learned this the hard way The first stop was the tender port in Sorrento. Although it was a beautiful day, the captain made the decision to abort the tender operation at 8 am because he said it was unsafe to launch the tenders. Apparently, this happens quite often for Oceania at this port. There is no excuse for this since Naples is a nearby port option where ships 5 times larger (Norwegian Epic) than the Riviera dock regularly. Oceania tenders in Sorrento to save the docking fees which is inexcusable for a higher end cruise that costs twice as much as sailing on the Epic. Shame on you and on me for not realizing this before booking. We had a private tour booked for the Sorrento port and as a result had to eat the $500 cost and did not get to see Pompeii one of the sites we were most looking forward to. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We have been on Oceania before and loved it and this was a great itinerary. The cabin was a little disappointing. It seemed a bit worn out. The bathroom has a big bathtub shower in addition to a small stall shower. Cabin steward was ... Read More
We have been on Oceania before and loved it and this was a great itinerary. The cabin was a little disappointing. It seemed a bit worn out. The bathroom has a big bathtub shower in addition to a small stall shower. Cabin steward was excellent. Food on Oceania has always been fantastic but this time we were disappointed. There are 4 specialty restaurants which were all excellent but the main dining room which is beautiful was not as good as in the past. The food was good but the selections were not as good. Overall we still love Oceania and would cruise again. The ports were very good and Oceania provides a free shuttle to the center of town in a lot of the ports. We generally do our own tours because we like smaller groups and lower prices than those tours that Oceania offers. The entertainment was good. We had a violinist, a piano player, a comedian and a magician in addition to the ship's singers and dancers. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Great ports to visit. The ship itself was 1st class in every way. We chose a penthouse which was spacious and very well designed. THE ENTIRE STAFF WERE EXTREMELY FRIENDLY AND The speciality restaurants were great, although we ... Read More
Great ports to visit. The ship itself was 1st class in every way. We chose a penthouse which was spacious and very well designed. THE ENTIRE STAFF WERE EXTREMELY FRIENDLY AND The speciality restaurants were great, although we felt that the french restaurant was the weakest, while others thought it was the best. WE THOUGHT THAT THE ENTERTAINMENT WAS FOR THE MOST PART SO-SO AND Not enough on board activities during days in port. The internet was a big disappointment, the service was almost non existent for the most part. Another disappointment was the lack of snacks during the afternoon,other than cookies . Even with these negatives the entire trip was fabulous and we would not hesitate to book this ship again. It was a costly trip, but as they say you get what you pay for. IWE WOULD HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS SHIP TO ANY ONE WHO IS THINKING OF CRUISING Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Having already covered the mainstream Med ports pretty thoroughly, we chose this cruise because they offered places we had not been to. Having settled on the itinerary we then read reviews and were quickly sold on Oceania thanks to the ... Read More
Having already covered the mainstream Med ports pretty thoroughly, we chose this cruise because they offered places we had not been to. Having settled on the itinerary we then read reviews and were quickly sold on Oceania thanks to the positive reports. None of them were wrong. The ship is beautiful and wonderfully maintained, the crew are all totally friendly and more than eager to please, the Concierge level suite was outstanding in both comfort and space, and the cuisine was way above any that we have encountered on previous cruises - both ocean and river types. The policy of being treated as an adult with regard to bringing alcohol on board was a good one. We didn't utilise this as we purchased a Beverage package but would have appreciated it otherwise. Not having been to any of the shows in the theatre I can't pass comment. But we did enjoy the classical quartet and also the singer/pianist in one of the bars. Quizzes were always good fun as the Entertainment Manager had a great sense of humour. The only negative I can post is that the Future Tours Manageress made us feel less than worthy of her precious time and was so rude to us that we walked out without booking as we had intended. I have since been in touch online with a marvellous Oceania agent based in London, take a bow Mr. Charles Deeall, and he has restored our faith to the point where we have booked a December sailing from Cape Town (our home) to Singapore. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We selected this cruise based on the itinerary. We wanted to spend some time in Portugal before boarding the ship. We also appreciated the fact that the airfare was included in the cruise package. We were able to change our flight ... Read More
We selected this cruise based on the itinerary. We wanted to spend some time in Portugal before boarding the ship. We also appreciated the fact that the airfare was included in the cruise package. We were able to change our flight departure for a nominal fee to accommodate the five pre-cruise days spent in Porto and Lisbon. We were also able to fly to a different city at the end of the cruise, at no additional cost. Once on board, we thoroughly enjoyed the service and amenities offered on the Riviera. Staff was most accommodating, dining options were plentiful and shipboard activities, especially those offered through the Culinary Center, were most enjoyable. Also had the opportunity to be pampered at the Canyon Ranch Spa - delightful! We did not book our excursions through Oceania as we have had much success using the Forum through Cruise Critic. We have met wonderful people from all over the world who share our love for travel and food. These friendships have extended beyond our days on the ship - an added bonus. We do want to encourage passengers to take advantage of the specialty restaurants on board the Riviera. Unlike other cruise lines, there is no additional cost to enjoy these intimate dining experiences. We ate at all four and thoroughly enjoyed each meal. In addition, we had an amazing night celebrating our anniversary at La Reserve. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We chose this cruise and cruise line because of the itinerary. The reviews closed the deal. The standard room and bathroom are "big," the stateroom attendants were great. The air conditioning worked great. The ship is ... Read More
We chose this cruise and cruise line because of the itinerary. The reviews closed the deal. The standard room and bathroom are "big," the stateroom attendants were great. The air conditioning worked great. The ship is comfortable, not too large, not crowded for the most part. Feels like a country club. The dress code is country club casual at all times, so no need for men's jackets or ties. Embarkation and disembarkation could not have been easier. There were crew members to help you find your luggage upon leaving. The restaurants offer plenty of variety. The food is good but not better than you can find at good restaurants in the big cities. The service is great except for the end of the meal. The coffee service is sporatic, sometimes non-existant. The main dining room coffee is awful, so get a cappucino or have the waiter get the americano from the machine. The room service breakfast quality was not so great. We gave up and ate at the buffet. We tried the dining room for breakfast, but it was just too slow and nothing special. Besides, a blueberry in the pancake I ordered in the dining room exploded on me and my shirt, the ship cleaned the shirt for free. The cruise directors were great. The few shows we saw were forgettable but the band was always good. There is only one show seating, so if you eat late, you will miss most of the entertainment. The crew, under questioning, say people go on Oceania for the food, not the shows. We went to one trivia contest, it was fun. Since this cruise was port-intensive, there was no time for the mundane shipboard activities. The guest lecturer was great. The onboard internet was slow, if it worked. When in port, better to use your phone data plan. There were some decent and some really bad port excursions. If you go to Ibiza, stay on the ship. "Overview" tours can be slept through. Better to concentrate on one particular aspect. What really makes this ship and cruise line are the passengers. They are predominately well-off, educated, and sociable, and older. It is easy to meet people and make friends. While this ship is a cut above the big lines like Holland and Celebrity, it is not quite perfect. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
As a frequent guest of the Oceania Cruise Line, our two-week visit to the Mediterranean was our first experience outside of the Caribbean. We arranged to spend two full days in Monte Carlo before departure. For the record, Le Meridien ... Read More
As a frequent guest of the Oceania Cruise Line, our two-week visit to the Mediterranean was our first experience outside of the Caribbean. We arranged to spend two full days in Monte Carlo before departure. For the record, Le Meridien hotel is the only option for a beachfront venue. Unless you have money to burn, avoid it. Very expensive, with rooms that are similar to those at airport Ramada Inns. Nice views of the ocean. As for the cruise, Oceania met every standard for which they are known. Incredible food, the highest level of service that we've ever experienced, attention to hygiene and cleanliness that would make your grandmother proud, and a nice variety of on-board entertainment and activities. For those who haven't sailed on Oceania, the main dining options include the Terrace Cafe (a misnomer, since this is a full-service buffet that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner; special offerings are cooked to order, and the menu varies daily), a Grand Dining Room (popular place to sit and order off a menu), and four specialty restaurants (Asian, Steak, Italian, and French). Be sure to book these venues early, since all are extremely popular for the simple reason that they're fabulous. The Polo Grill (steak, but also lobster and other premium dishes) is especially popular. The couple traveling with us -- true "foodies" -- said that their meal at the Polo was the best food they'd ever eaten. There are also afternoon "teas" in the Horizons (a very large lounge with panoramic views), a coffee bar on the 14th floor, Wave Grill (for high-quality hamburgers, salads, desserts, etc.), and other offerings (e.g., special buffets to celebrate "occasions", such as national holidays). The staterooms are cleaned TWICE per day, and the service staff almost appears to outnumber the guests. Again, the quality of service is a 10+. Insofar as entertainment is concerned, they try. A group of singers and dancers performed several nights each week, and they were decent. There are also a string quartet, a swing/jazz band, lecturers, a popular music ensemble, and other offerings. The only are that might foster a complaint is the shore excursions. This is true on all cruise lines (even Viking), but deserves to be mentioned. From our experience, you can do much better by getting off the ship and making your own tour arrangements. Either walk around and explore the ports, prearrange a tour with a reputable company, or go ashore and negotiate with one of the many service providers who'll be eager to show you their home for a fraction of the price charged by Oceania. Also, do NOT use Oceania's transfers until you've explored options. For example, Oceania charged $89/person for transportation from the Lisbon port to the airport (a distance of about 10 km). We simply disembarked on the morning of our departure, walked up to one of the many vans and taxis waiting at the curb, and were promptly driven to the airport for 50 Euros (4 people with lots of luggage). Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I chose this cruise because it coincided with a wedding we were attending in Italy. Ours was the Western Mediterranean cruise which departed June 14, 2017. Our friends had cruised on the Riviera and highly recommended it. We ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it coincided with a wedding we were attending in Italy. Ours was the Western Mediterranean cruise which departed June 14, 2017. Our friends had cruised on the Riviera and highly recommended it. We couldn't have had a more wonderful cruise. The staff is very attentive. Nothing is ever a problem as far as they are concerned. The food is five star and the ship is absolutely beautiful! My husband and I can't wait to take another Oceania cruise! Highly recommend! This is a cruise for adults without children. The wonderful thing about Oceania is that they do not charge extra for the specialty restaurants. There are four included in your cruise and all are excellent. In addition, you have the grand dining room, the terrace cafe, and the grill by the pool. We feel that for the money, you can't beat Oceania. It is a luxery level cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We were so excited to go on this trip. I heard so much about this ship, however it wasn't anything that I expected. The ship was not clean and very worn. The conceirge service wasn't friendly. They only answered "No" ... Read More
We were so excited to go on this trip. I heard so much about this ship, however it wasn't anything that I expected. The ship was not clean and very worn. The conceirge service wasn't friendly. They only answered "No" to everything. I didn't see any of the workers really happy, They never smiled. I understand the company was sold to Norweigian cruise line. I also understand that the ship is going April 2018 to dry dock. Obviously, if I would known this I definitely wouldn't gone on this cruise line. I felt we spent so much money for the quality we didn't get. The gifts shops were also a disappointment. The food was not the best. So disappointed. If you chose to travel with Oceania, I am sure you will have a good time. Best of Luck to you and your families. Oh, one more thing, I did hear people talking about the great deals they got on this trip. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We picked this cruise because of the dates and the itinerary. The ship is very lovely with beautiful art throughout the public areas. Our cabin was very spacious with lots of room for clothes, toiletries, etc. We booked an excursion in ... Read More
We picked this cruise because of the dates and the itinerary. The ship is very lovely with beautiful art throughout the public areas. Our cabin was very spacious with lots of room for clothes, toiletries, etc. We booked an excursion in every port with Oceania and this was a BIG mistake - very expensive and not good. Some excursions were cancelled and there were none that they could offer us as replacements . My advice is to look up the features of every port and either book a guide yourself or just walk the town to visit the places YOU want to see. You have to book the speciality restaurants in advance and you will NOT be given an opportunity to go back to one of these restaurants - so you must eat in the grand dining room or the Terrace Cafe. I took a cooking class at the Culinary Center and it was an excellent experience which I highly recommend. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We travelled on the Riviera for the first time last year and loved it so much we had to sail again with them and we were not disappointed. The Food, Service, Cabin & Entertainment were as good as last year. The itinerary provided ... Read More
We travelled on the Riviera for the first time last year and loved it so much we had to sail again with them and we were not disappointed. The Food, Service, Cabin & Entertainment were as good as last year. The itinerary provided us a port intensive cruise which we enjoy allowing us to walk around local port at our leisure & hop back on the ship for a bite to eat when we wanted too. When we first arrived at the port we accessed the ship within fifteen minutes on arrival & went straight up to the Buffet where there was a fantastic display of foods to wet our appetite. As usual the staff were very attentive and helpful & this continued throughout the whole cruise. When we were allowed into our cabin where again this didn't disappoint. The well appointed Bathroom with a BATH! and separate shower, the ever so comfy bed with a mattress that just hugs you with everything prepared for the cruise ahead. Personally we were very happy with the standard of food provided in all restaurants with the standard of service in all areas second to none. The staff could not have been more helpful & accommodating. We didn't participate in any of the onboard activities with the ships staff but enjoyed playing golf & shuffleboard with our friends. We went to all the shows in the evening & enjoyed them all with the Ship's crew putting on some excellent productions with the last show being tremendous. The Public Rooms were always very quiet but immaculately presented at all times. As mentioned the service was excellent at all times with everyone always greeting you with a smile & always available for short chats with a couple of the staff remembering us from our first cruise on the Riviera last year! The shore excursions on the ship are expensive but as these were included within our cruise package this didn't affect us. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Nothing but great things to say about this cruise line. Food was amazing both in the specialty restaurants and in the general dining areas. Highly recommend stopping at the gelato stand:) Whether you went for a simple burger or hot ... Read More
Nothing but great things to say about this cruise line. Food was amazing both in the specialty restaurants and in the general dining areas. Highly recommend stopping at the gelato stand:) Whether you went for a simple burger or hot dog at Waves Grill (both very fresh and excellent) or you dined in one of the four specialty restaurants, there is really nothing you can complain about. Some highlights? Cheese souffle @Jacques, prime rib @ Polo, sea bass @ Red Ginger, Lasagna and filet @ Toscana. One of the highlights of our trip was the special night in La Reserve for food/wine pairing. Worth every penny and if the other nights weren't full, I would have gone to all of them. Both the food and wine were among the best we've ever had. They greeted us by name when we arrived. Service was unparalleled. We met phenomenal people as well. Service was beyond reproach - all the small details were taken care of. Staff were willing, friendly and genuine. Our room was kept immaculate - even folding up my nighty beside my pillow and folding my left out clothes neatly. We even left dirty souvenir glasses from our day in Barcelona and they cleaned them for us. Embarkation was flawless - took no time and we were let on 2 hours before official embarkation, when we arrived expecting to line up. Cabin was very nice - great size and fabulous linens and a very cozy bed made for a very comfortable stay. We never made it to the entertainment - we tend to eat late and things started at 9:30 - so maybe a second later show would have been nice, but we didn't miss it. I will say shore excursions are at a heavy price tag and in my opinion, not that special. The days we did some of our own research ended up more enjoyable. So if you are a little adventurous - plan it yourself or you will get a very standard excursion. Great gym. Never felt crowded with the exception of day at sea where finding a lounge chair at 11:30 a.m. (when we woke up) was near impossible except that we lucked out as someone left for lunch. You may want to wake early to ensure you get chairs. Other than that, even that day felt very laid back. Boat was more of a "buzz" - which was nice. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Since Norwegian took control of Oceania, the shipping company sank, the former European crew disappear, now Filipinan crew, the dress code also disappeared, pasesengers in Jeans, sportt shoes, shorts and swimwear in the Bars and ... Read More
Since Norwegian took control of Oceania, the shipping company sank, the former European crew disappear, now Filipinan crew, the dress code also disappeared, pasesengers in Jeans, sportt shoes, shorts and swimwear in the Bars and Restaurants, definitvely completely lost its category. The quality of food also is not the same and the service is rude, scales with absurd schedules like Ibiza only a few hours in the day when life begins at night. The Shows every night starts to early, it`s impossible to catch them, Dinner is at the same hour. We can try to get on board reservation for Restaurants and it was impossible, the people in charge or reservations always said SOLD OUT, and her attitude was very angry. Only Concierges Julio and Felipe have a good attitude, always availables. Recently we did another cruise with Sliversea and the difference in quality and category is impressive, surely the next cruise will be again with Silversea. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
1. The state room was nicely appointed and our state room attendant was very good. 2. We did not participate in any of the ship board activities so can not comment on entertainment. 3. We were satisfied with the quality of all ... Read More
1. The state room was nicely appointed and our state room attendant was very good. 2. We did not participate in any of the ship board activities so can not comment on entertainment. 3. We were satisfied with the quality of all excursions. 4. We were very displeased with the concierge service. The concierge was not helpful at all. We felt that we paid for a service that was not really provided. 5. We were also very disappointed with the quality of food and service available in the Grand Dining Room. Breakfast and dinner service and food were the worst we have ever had on any cruise. Would not choose Oceania again for that reason alone. 6. The food and service in the specialty restaurants was much better but fell short of spectacular and was not as advertised "the best cuisine at sea". 7. Lastly, the cruise line failed to confirm a specialty restaurant reservation for the night requested to celebrate my birthday. At 5PM on May 26, we returned to our state room and did not have a confirmation for the restaurant as we had requested on the first day of our cruise. After calling the concierge and reservation desk, we were provided accommodations in one of the specialty restaurants, not the one I requested originally. The restaurant was not prepared to acknowledge my birthday that evening (a special cake was not prepared) and no other birthday acknowledgement was provided. We notified the ship of my birthday on several months prior to the cruise date and again reminded them a few weeks before embarkation. We also notified the onboard reservation agent of our preferred date to celebrate my birthday on May 26. 8. The ship has no customer service representative that is readily available to address and resolve complaints as they arise. All other cruise lines I have used have representative to speak with and the concierge also assists whenever necessary, but Oceania fails terribly in this area. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
I chose this cruise based on the itinerary as well as my past experience with the Marina about 3 years ago on a Baltic Cruise which was beyond fabulous. I highly recommended this cruise to my friends and 3 of them accompanied us on this ... Read More
I chose this cruise based on the itinerary as well as my past experience with the Marina about 3 years ago on a Baltic Cruise which was beyond fabulous. I highly recommended this cruise to my friends and 3 of them accompanied us on this trip. One also has booked the Owners Suite in December on one of the first all Cuba cruises on Oceania. I had raved about the food and service on Oceania. I recalled the fabulous food and the options for room service. We both had Penthouse suites. The room itself was fine, although not as luxurious as the one we had just had on Seabourn which was fabulous. The food this time was very questionable at best. I don't know who is their supplier of lobster, but it certainly was not the high quality we had on our previous Oceania cruise. The maitre'd the main dining room was very surly. My husband and I went for breakfast on the second day of the cruise and they seated us on an almost empty room against a wall when there were many seats with a view of the water the the port. When I asked if we could have a room with more of a view in a less crowded area up front I was told they were reserved. Then when someone was seated behind us with a horrible cough, I again asked if I could move, but again was told this was the only space they had. I told him again that I was not happy about the table and would have preferred to sit in a more private location and I did not like to be that close to people especially when they were sick! I was quite upset and we left early and didn't even finish breakfast. I vowed never to return to the main dining room again. However, later on in the cruise we decided to try the main dining room for lunch since most days we were out on tour during the day. Same scenario - only worse, totally empty room with maybe 4 tables of diners. Around 1 p.m. Again we were seated by the hostess against the wall on the only side of the room with NO VIEW AT ALL. A vacant looking port building while the beautiful seats up front overlooking Malta were completely empty. I asked if we could be seated up front where there was a view and she reluctantly took us up to the front part, but instead of the middle put us at the table that was in the farthest corner where one of us was still facing the same ugly building. At this point I did not want to stay in the room at all. I told my husband I would not stay there. As we were walking away instead of asking if there was something wrong since we obviously did not stay, the maitre'd was there and asked why we were leaving. I asked him why they were again seating us in a corner to which he retorted - well you told me you didn't like to sit close to other people! Instead of trying to rectify and accommodate I felt he was challenging me. Needless to say, I told my butler to please make sure we had private dining rooms as now our only other choice for dinner was the Terrace. Luckily we never had to return to the main dining room. Let me say this. It was not due to our dress. Both my husband and I are the type who when we cruise like to wear our best - not the easiest to pack. We were not coming into the dining room wearing shorts and flip flops! I am not trying to brag, but many of the staff complimented me on my clothing and appearance. In fact, one of the assistants for Oceania as we exited at the port, told my husband that he was very lucky and that I was one of the most elegant ladies on the whole ship. I only say this to justify that the people in the dining room had no reason to take any offense at our dress or demeanor. Please don't think I am trying to brag about myself. I am not the type. I just felt so hurt by the treatment that this almost ruined my entire cruise. I was in tears several times over this. For the good parts, the housekeeping staff was fabulous. Our room was always perfectly clean and neat and when it was my husband's birthday, they filled our room with balloons and brought a sweet card and as we walked down the hall many wished him a happy birthday. It was like family. To my surprise, the food in Red Ginger turned out to be our favorite. I also very much loved Tuscany if for nothing else the view was fabulous as was the view in Polo. Jacques was not a fabulous as I had expected but still very good. I was not bothered by it, but my husband loves the shows and on this ship that left quite a lot to be desired. The only good entertainer was the tenor Italian singer who was fabulous. The rest was pretty lackluster. One was a magician and the other a comedian - both of which I didn't attend but my husband was not impressed. The singer/dancers ensemble were only fair. Horizons was not very well attended for the late evening music. We only passed by the piano bar. Overall, the ship was fine but I am totally rethinking my upcoming cruise in December. It will be on the smaller Insignia and I am looking for a different experience since we are going to Cuba which is easy for us since we are in Miami. We have our first Regent trip scheduled for mid August and will have something to compare. I will say I still preferred Oceania to the Seabourn Quest we took in October of last year. But no high rating as I had expected for Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. We have sailed many times in the Caribbean and have been on one river cruise with Viking before taking this cruise. This cruise on the Riviera was by far the best cruise we have ever taken. The ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. We have sailed many times in the Caribbean and have been on one river cruise with Viking before taking this cruise. This cruise on the Riviera was by far the best cruise we have ever taken. The ship was wonderful Service was excellent!!!! The original itinerary was changed slightly due to the G7 Summit and the Grand Prix in Monte Carlo. The changes did not disappoint, though. The only disappointment was that we docked in Malta on a Sunday when many things are closed or close early, even though we were in Malta until 10:00 pm. Split, Croatia and Kotor, Montenegro are both interesting cities. We only took one excursion through Oceania and would recommend that you plan in advance and book private tours. The excursions through Oceania are expensive (we think over-priced) and we did several similar tours through local tour guides for less money and were able to do and see exactly what we wanted to do and see. The only negative for Oceania is the cost of the excursions. We would love to book another cruise on Oceania in Europe in the near future. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was our 6th cruise in the last 8 years. Three cruises have been on Celebrity and 3 on Oceania. First let me say that we have had good experiences on both. However, up until this last cruise I would have put Oceania in a clear ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise in the last 8 years. Three cruises have been on Celebrity and 3 on Oceania. First let me say that we have had good experiences on both. However, up until this last cruise I would have put Oceania in a clear higher category of service. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. If you had never traveled when it was the "Original" Oceania, you would probably be quite satisfied with some things still clearly superior. -Particularly the embarkation and debarkation process.- It is well organized and not the barely controlled chaos we experienced on Celebrity. We picked this cruise primarily for the itinerary and were not disappointed. We liked the room and the size of the ship and the food was pretty much the same as always. Good, but not markedly better than Celebrity. We also liked the all inclusive program, rather than having to pull out our stateroom card every time we wanted a soft drink, etc. But....and here's the "but", the feel of the experience has changed. They have gone from a start up business where it seemed everybody was doing their best to make it "the best" to a business that is a line on a corperate spread sheet. Before the service was extraordinary. Now the service is adequate. Before the crew seemed happy. Now, not so much. Our butler did the bare minimum. He brought in breakfast three mornings and would hardly engage in conversation and when we called him to see if we could change a restaurant reservation time, he didn't even return the call. I asked if I could get more hangers and he told me to ask the maid.....you get the idea... On this cruise we never saw the Captain ....although, I am fairly sure we had one....and we only saw the cruise director in passing. On a cruise on Marina in the summer of 2015, we saw the Captain and his family, the cruise director Dottie and her husband the comedian and they were all engaged and doing their best to make it a great experience. Our butler asked us on more than one occasion if there wasn't more he could do for us. Passengers sat in the lounges and restaurants talking about how many Oceania cruises they had been on and how great the experience was. If I remember correctly our stateroom card had printed on it how many cruises we had been on. Back then on the final night there was a special show at the end. The Captain came on stage and regonized the crew and told who was leaving on vacation etc., and it always ended in everybody singing Auld Lang Syne and dancing in the aisles. Ok, so maybe it was a bit Hokey, but it was fun. This time they ran a movie the last night. I almost forgot....the entertainment. I would have to say with the exception of a singer from England, I would pass entirely. I think the accountants must have really sharpened their pencils and decided that was a place money could be saved. Look I understand, I am an accountant by trade and I realize when Norwegian bought Oceania they went through and made changes to increase profitability. That's to be expected, but you can't blame a girl for being whistful. I enjoyed the personal touchs. Would I sail on Oceania again...probably, but my choice will be driven more by itenrary than by brand loyalty. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was our 18th cruise, having cruised aboard most of the major lines (Princess, RCCL,Holland America) and we found the Rivieria to be the most comfortable and relaxing ship we have been aboard. Our balcony cabin on the 8th deck had ... Read More
This was our 18th cruise, having cruised aboard most of the major lines (Princess, RCCL,Holland America) and we found the Rivieria to be the most comfortable and relaxing ship we have been aboard. Our balcony cabin on the 8th deck had the usual grade of amenities, and a marble bath with a separate tub that also serves as a second shower. We found more storage space then we needed, and the mini-bar was stocked, free of charge, with non alcholic beverages. Cabin service was terrific. We lacked nothing. With the exception of some slower-then-expected service in the MDR (main dining room) for breakfast, we never had a complaint. The buffet was never crowded and the selection was very good. Omelets to order! Fresh pastries every day. We had three dinners in specialty restaurants and all were excellent. The only down-side is that you won't want to miss a meal! Its difficult to enjoy port restuarants when you know you have a first-class meal waiting for you on board- and you can dine whenever you wish. We were at each and every show- every night at 9:30PM. Unlike larger ships, there is just one show and we never had to arrive early to get a good seat. The shows are OK, not terrific, not terrible. The Riveria is just about the perfect size. It has all the advantages of a larger ship but is never crowded, and at 785 feet its not going to rock and roll at sea. The weakest link were the shore excursions. Many seemed overpriced (although Oceania will no doubt include several in the pricing) and underwhelming. Frankly we did better on our own, but, in some cases, it was just easier to use Oceania. In Livorno, for example, its a long bus ride to Florence and Pisa, and its just easier using the Oceania excursions. Embarkation and debarkation were painless. One final note on dress codes. Over the years we have found the dress codes on cruise ships ignored to larger and larger extents. Oceania's literature refers to the no-tie, "country club" code. Ironically many men wore ties and jackets (despite the code) and an equal number wore blue jeans in the dining room and arrived at the speciality restaurants with simple button-down shirts. In short, I don't know what the dress code is anymore on any ship. So, at twice the price of say Holland America, is it worth it? Well, you will meet well-heeled and well traveled guests but cruise ships have more in common with each other then differences. The differences are real, but subtle. If you seek a quiet ride in a relaxed envrionment I would not hesitate to recommend Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This has been our fifth Oceania cruise. We booked this cruise together with some friends we met on the Riviera 1,5 year ago. Malta was great , so was Taormini and Sorrento. Food was great as always. Ship was fully booked , so ... Read More
This has been our fifth Oceania cruise. We booked this cruise together with some friends we met on the Riviera 1,5 year ago. Malta was great , so was Taormini and Sorrento. Food was great as always. Ship was fully booked , so there was more entertainment then we were used to. I had the idea that the beds in the cabin were not of the same quality as the first couple of times we cruised on the Riviera. They were less comfortable. While Oceania always was known for their comfortable beds. So that was a bit of a dissapointment. But still the overall experience has been very good as always. Although the ship was fully booked there were still plenty of sunbeds available at the pool even at the seaday. Breakfast in the maindining room is always very good, but this time there was one day when my eggs benedict were overcooked. When I send them back tney managed to overcook them again. I did not have time to wait for the third time. The next day they made sure they did it right. So all good again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
My husband and I have cruised many, many times on different cruise lines. This was our first Oceania cruise and chose this particular cruise because the Riviera has a good reputation and this 17 Day cruise spent 3 days in Israel - in ... Read More
My husband and I have cruised many, many times on different cruise lines. This was our first Oceania cruise and chose this particular cruise because the Riviera has a good reputation and this 17 Day cruise spent 3 days in Israel - in addition to a number of Greek Islands and a few Italy ports. Oceania claims to have the best food at sea - and I tend to agree with that. Oceania also claims to have great service. Usually, the service is good but it lacks in a number of ways, including Cabin Steward service can be spotty. The Grand Dining Room service was so slow and poor that we never went back after our first experience there. We ate in the Terrace Café for lunch and dinner most of the time and the food there was mostly the same menu as the Grand Dining Room and you can get in and out much more quickly. Jacques Restaurant was good - both food and service. Tuscana (Italian) was my absolute favorite. The food and service were unbelievable and in my opinion could not be improved upon. Red Ginger was a disappointment - not because of the service which was very good, but because of the menu. Of course, Asian food is not my favorite but my husband really wanted to go and even he was disappointed that the items you would expect to be on the menu were missing. Polo Grill (Steakhouse) was definitely the most disappointing. The service was poor and the 20 oz. Porterhouse Steak my husband had was so tough and hard to eat that he could only swallow a small portion of the steak. He had really expected that experience to be exemplary but it was the worst of all. Unfortunately, the Reception Desk will tell you anything just to get you to "go on". Also, the Shore Excursions Department would tell us that we would be anchored in a particular area and then it would turn out to be a different place which would be must more inconvenient and harder to get to the desired areas - and more time consuming. If you do not take the Ship's own Shore Excursions, you are definitely at a disadvantage each day. Oceania says they provide transportation into "town" most of the time if they do not dock near the town. On this cruise, Oceania did not provide such complimentary transportation in areas needed. We had a Concierge Veranda and with the amount of money we invested in this cruise, we can honestly say it was tremendously over priced. We would much more recommend either Holland America or Celebrity (especially Celebrity if you are a "foodie") and take several cruises for the price of this one on Oceania. Yes, the food was good but not worth that many more thousands of dollars than say either Holland America or Celebrity. The bed was extremely comfortable - probably the most comfortable of any hotel, including the very premium hotels. Dr. Wulf, the Enrichment Speaker was very good and informative as well as interesting. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Riviera Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.5
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 3.5 3.2
Public Rooms 4.5 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 2.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.2
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.8

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