350 Oceania Riviera Luxury Cruise Reviews

We selected this cruise for our 15th cruise on Oceania, looking forward to receiving our Oceania Club Gold status. In addition, this cruise would take us to a couple of new ports and back to others we had not revisited. To alleviate the ... Read More
We selected this cruise for our 15th cruise on Oceania, looking forward to receiving our Oceania Club Gold status. In addition, this cruise would take us to a couple of new ports and back to others we had not revisited. To alleviate the hassles of flying we drove to Miami. The first full day out of Miami, was a pleasant sea day. We booked a cabin with an extended veranda, and were pleased that we had two lounges in addition to two arm chairs on the veranda. The next morning, my wife woke up early vomiting and diarrhea. A call to the ship's medical department resulted with a visit to our cabin by the doctor's assistant and one of the ship's security guards. Without taking my wife's temperature, nor asking what were her prior medical history, she made an immediate diagnosis that my wife had the noro-virus and gave her some anti-diarrhea pills. Next, security took away our cabin keys and informed us that we both would be quarantined for the next 48 hour. I was not ill. No further explanations were given, only that we would have to order our meals from room service. We missed our first port of call, which was a new port for us. The pills that they gave my wife caused her to have server stomach pains. I called medical, and told them the situation and also gave them a list of her current medications and medical history which they did not originally ask for, but then they wrote them down.. Room service was a total disaster! The first meal (lunch) was 2 1/2 hour late. It was cold and the coffee and soup, which were served in plastic bathroom glasses, covered with saran wrap, spilled onto the tray, over the dishes of food. The salad was wilted with the oil and vinegar separated. It was disgusting! It wasn't until our last meal the following day that the liquids were served in Styrofoam cups with lids. To make the situation more unbearable, Aruba would not permit the Riviera to dock because of the norovirus. We had wanted to leave the ship in Aruba and fly back to Miami, but we could not land. The concierge advised us that we would not be able to leave the ship the day before. In the meantime, our cabin was fumigated that day and we both had to sleep on the veranda during the afternoon nap. We could not breathe. Fortunately, my wife had her prescription inhaler, as well as a more milder one, which I was able to use. We chose not to see the ship's doctor because we might get quarantined again. My wife contracted pneumonia and I had sever breathing problems so the rest of the cruise was spent resting on our veranda in the fresh air The next day, we were stopped by security at the gangway because Bonaire would not allow previously quarantined persons off the ship. Now we missed 3 ports. At least we were free to roam the ship. The service in the Terrace was worse at dinner time. We had to wait for our table to be set up with dished and utensils. They took our water order, but it never arrived. After a second request, we were served water. We never got our coffee. The staff was completely overworked and it was obvious that there was a work slowdown. Bar nuts were not available in the bars. The library was closed, but the casino was open! The next day was a sea day and we had our meals in the grand dining room. Service was much better, but the ambiance was missing. The next port was a port where we were to dock, but instead we anchored off shore and had to take a tender to port. There was no way we were going to cram ourselves into a small tender with passenger who might still be carrying the virus. There were close to 98 infected people on board in various contagious stages. We managed to get off the ship in 4 ports, but only to walk around the port and not take any tours. Upon reaching home, I began my letter writing campaign to Oceania to find out what chemicals were used to fumigate our cabin. After two requests, I was told to write to the CDC for this information. Oceania required my wife to sign a release so I could get her medical records. They would not let us know what chemicals we were exposed to in our cabin which prevented us from informing our own physician what we were breathing which resulted in my wife's pneumonia. All guests received a coupon for 25% towards our next Caribbean cruise on the Riviera. I wrote back that this was not acceptable, and they responded that this was all we were entitled to. I then wrote and asked that the offer be extended to us for our own destination and choice of ship, not what they dictated. That request was denied and that was their final offer. We did receive our Oceania Club medal. It was sitting on our bed placed there by our cabin attendants. We were not invited to any of their Oceania Club recognition parties where we would have normally been presented with our pins. Since the mergers between Oceania, Regency, and Norwegian, it appears that the service on Oceania has deteriorated, while Norwegian has improved. Our next cruise, which will be number 35, will NOT be on Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Horrible time aboard. One day after boarding we are informed about Noro. Apparently 4-5th time in last 4-5 months. More are still getting sick. People today have been sick in public restrooms and Spa. Everything is being constantly ... Read More
Horrible time aboard. One day after boarding we are informed about Noro. Apparently 4-5th time in last 4-5 months. More are still getting sick. People today have been sick in public restrooms and Spa. Everything is being constantly sprayed and wiped. The walls, rails, doors, and elevators have sticky on them and have gunk lines where the disinfectant runs down. The fabric on chairs are sprayed as soon as you get up. Our clothes smell from it. I begin choking in the halls from the cleaning spray and must stay in cabin or on veranda. We were denied docking in Aruba. The staff is very tired from lack of sleep. Service is slow as staff must salt and pepper your food, and poor your cream. The lounges close early and the coffee machines are removed. Most activities that we came for are cancelled. No culinary school, no artist loft, no munchies with drinks, no appetizers with Captain's party, one Oceania Club event cancelled. There are over 900 loyal Club members on board. This is our 15th Oceania cruise and 5th on Riviera. Our friend became sick today. No specimen was taken, so the virus keeps moving. It is not Oceania's fault all this is happening. But, we are only half way through the cruise and most of us would like to go home now. I am diabetic and need a little munchie sometimes for blood sugar. Ship is mostly devoid of anything. We ordered from room service and after more than hour waiting, we cancelled it. The staff is very pushed. We do not know how many of them are sick. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We are 4 time cruisers on Oceania, 3 times on Riviera and 1 time on Marina. We LOVED Oceania! But this cruise was a huge disappointment!! First up was the food.. they advertise that its for foodies of which we are.. we did love their ... Read More
We are 4 time cruisers on Oceania, 3 times on Riviera and 1 time on Marina. We LOVED Oceania! But this cruise was a huge disappointment!! First up was the food.. they advertise that its for foodies of which we are.. we did love their food and thought is was truly the best of all the lines we travelled on. On the first day (embarkation) at the Terrace Buffet (one of my favourite places to dine on the ship) I noticed that instead of having 4 choices on the main buffet they had 4 of the same thing.. the service was unorganized in the Terrace, some of the servers just wandering around and not even looking to see if you are trying to call them (their were other servers at the other dining venues that were really great) I racked it up to first day embarkation but it was just the start of a bad situation.. don’t get me wrong the food is not bad.. but it has really really gone down hill since last year. I heard they were bought by Norwegian so maybe this is why?? I find it hard to believe that any of the wonderful french chefs are still aboard this ship... the food and presentation at most dining locations was mediocre.. Then there was NOROVIRUS!! We got sick on the 3rd day but pretty sure it was not from Noro, we felt it was food poisoning, we were sick just once and the runs for a few hours and then we were ok. Our cabin attendant found it necessary to report us to the ships infirmary on Tues, they took away our guest cards, basically locking us in the room for the next 48 hours (coming in with masks, rubber gloves, food was brought into us on paper plates, plastic knives and forks, plastic cups and the food was alway served cold, they fumigated our whole cabin, bed and all) Don’t get me wrong I understand the need to quarantine people that have NORO, but we were not diagnosed with NOGO. The “nurse” only came in the day later, we had no temperature taken, a couple of questions as to how we were, a bottle of immmodium and another pill for the nausea and she was gone, we never saw anyone from the infirmary again. We were treated as if we had leprosy..even fellow passengers were not admitting to anyone if they were part of the sick group or not, other passengers commented that we must have lied on our declaration at the airport and really were sick. For me, if you have NORO the last thing you would want to do or could do is fly and travel.. I realized now that a ship is the last place you want to be if you are sick, it’s a dictatorship and you have no rights. Now, we were on the list of sick people along with others that “maybe" had Noro. Once we were out of quarantine and given back our cards we were still on this list and could not get off in the first 3 ports.. of course the cruise line blamed it on the ports and did not take any responsibility for the outbreak or even our situation. Talking to officers on board the comment was “well some tourists must have been sick and brought it on the ship”. Just remember that this was the 3 sailing since Dec that Riviera had an outbreak. We were not notified by our travel agent or Oceania prior to sailing that this had taken place. When we asked Oceania what compensation we could be given the answer was NONE... When we asked out travel agent why they didn’t tell us, they claimed they didn’t know and they said when they called Oceania, they were also unaware there had been any outbreak before this, or even on this cruise... Like really??? I won’t bother to mention what others have on reviews before me.. the crew washing down walls, elevator buttons, railings, door handles, basically everything was wet and sticky. The Library was closed, the artists loft was closed, the cooking classes were cancelled.. and this is not a reasonably priced cruise, I would consider it fairly expensive compared to other lines, so the bar was high. Frank Del Rio and the others that envisioned Oceania as a wonderful Lux Lite line with amazing food must be so disappointed...Never again...... Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We have almost 300 days at sea with Cunard, Crystal, Hollande America, Celebrity, Royal Carribean, Princess, Norwegian and Oceania! This first Cruise with Oceania was a complete disapointment. Food was just ok not the ´best food at ... Read More
We have almost 300 days at sea with Cunard, Crystal, Hollande America, Celebrity, Royal Carribean, Princess, Norwegian and Oceania! This first Cruise with Oceania was a complete disapointment. Food was just ok not the ´best food at sea' as advertized by Oceania. Oil was used in the pastries instead of butter. Same sauce served with beef,veal and chicken, same vegetables served in the Terrace Café every lunch... Entertainment was poor. No activity to participe in since everything was closed - the norovirus was with us! CDC came on the ship to investigate , is it only norovirus ?? 10 spécimens were evaluated and are still under investigation by the CDC. One of our party of 4 was sick the second day at sea and there was no doctor visit, no temperature taken, no specimen taken, is it the norovirus? Minimum 48 Hours in your cabin with your spouse and no right to go out of the ship for the next 3 ports! We had no welcome glass of wine when we board the ship - thank you to Celebrity for doing it. Hat and jeans in the dining venues for men, no jacket for the Captain's evening - is it country club? Pricing of the wine questionnable - a $15 botte sold at $60 + 18% for the service! And the wine list is not long and not interesting. Will We recommand Oceania? NO. Will we repeat with Oceania? NO. And many other passengers on this cruise who were repeaters told us that they will not repeat again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This was our third cruise with Oceania, first on Riveria (probably our last), second with Marina. We were very excited about this cruise because the ports of call were different from any we had taken in the past, especially Aruba. Lo and ... Read More
This was our third cruise with Oceania, first on Riveria (probably our last), second with Marina. We were very excited about this cruise because the ports of call were different from any we had taken in the past, especially Aruba. Lo and behold, two days out, Norovirus was announced by the Captain and the ship went into quarantine mode and all of the niceties that we have come to expect from Oceania disappeared immediately. The tables were cleared, the buckets of disinfectant came out and hands had to be sanitized at least a dozen times a day. It was like being on a floating horror movie with disinfectant dripping down the walls, wallpaper lifting off the walls, railings, counters and doors all sticky and goopy to the touch so much so that you couldn't even hold the stair railings when you went up and down. It was serious overkill. There were passengers who had a bit of stomach upset who were reported by room stewards that were quarantined without being tested for Norovirus and then subjected to the same stigma as those that actually had the virus. We were not allowed to dock in Aruba by the port authorities. We were very upset as this was the main reason we chose this cruise in the first place. We had to show our world cards every time we entered any of the restaurants to make sure we were not one of the "infected" people as they took their cards away and taped their doors shut and took them food on paper plates and plastic cutlery; apparently cold food for at least 48 hours. There was no captains reception for returning guests as is the norm on Oceania, the culinary school was closed, library, anywhere that they thought could pass germs. As soon as you got up from a table, the cloth was whisked away and it was sloshed down, table and chairs with disinfectant and left for at least 10 minutes. You had to ask for cream and sugar or salt and pepper and they would bring it to you and pour the cream and give you a paper packet of sugar or salt and pepper. I felt like I was in a low class cafeteria not a luxury cruise ship. Lastly, this cruise was completely sold out. Full to the brim. We should have been told that this ship had had Norovirus not once but twice before this cruise so that we could have made an informed decision as to whether or not we wanted to put ourselves into this situation. Oceania did send an urgent email to my travel agent shortly before left but it was only to offer us an upgrade for an additional cost. They chose not to tell us about the Norovirus. Fortunately for us and fortunately for Oceania, we did not get sick. Had we been one of the many very elderly people with depressed immune systems on board, this could have gone very badly. One last thing. Oceania did not plan very well for a sold out cruise ship. They ran out of wine, Pellegrino water, several foods. I for one like blueberries in my blueberry pancakes. When you have a full ship, you plan accordingly, and clearly they did not. I was not impressed. The saving grace for us was we had a penthouse suite with a lovely butler named Hamesh that saw to our every need. He brought me my Pellegrino and lots of it to the room. I suffer from migraines and always had a full ice bucket for my ice pack thanks to Hamesh. We had dinner in our room which was wonderful and daily canapés and drinks on the veranda as we pulled out of port. The room was beautifully appointed and we would never book anything other than a penthouse suite. It is well worth the extra money you pay for it. We have always enjoyed sailing with Oceania and sing their praises to all of our friends and while we know Norovirus is not their fault, they could have behaved very differently at the end of the cruise to make us feel better about the whole thing. They never said the simple words we are sorry for this or that this has inconvenienced you or perhaps ruined your holiday and hope that it won't influence your decision to sail with us again. Simple words that would have made a big difference and perhaps made us feel better. Secondly, I think they should have provided a cruise refund for this cruise and a credit for a future cruise. This would have made us want to cruise with them again and give them another chance. This cruise was seriously ruined and we spent major dollars with this company. We have told our travel agent that we were tried and true Oceania'ers but we are now looking at other luxury cruise companies. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This was our second cruise on the Riviera and we were so looking forward to the food, playing tennis, golf and croquet on the forward sports deck and taking art and culinary classes when we were at sea. We also had high expectations for ... Read More
This was our second cruise on the Riviera and we were so looking forward to the food, playing tennis, golf and croquet on the forward sports deck and taking art and culinary classes when we were at sea. We also had high expectations for the entertainment as it was better than average on our previous cruise. But, above all we booked the cruise for the food. Before I start, let me just say Oceania, unlike other cruiselines, DOES NOT require passengers to santitize their hands the first 48 hours of the cruise prior to going into a dining area. Due to this company policy, we feel strongly the 100+ passengers that caught the norovirus on this cruise as well as those of us that caught a solid case of bronchitis could have been minimized. What we found so amazing was this was the 3rd time CDC had been notified by the Riviera that over 2% of the passengers had come down with the virus since Nov 2015! If fact according to our room steward, it was actually the 5th time. I guess the other 2 times didn't reach the CDC notification level. Now, for the rest of the story, but I'll try to be brief. By the second day there were so many cases of the norovirus being reported, they cancelled the culinary and art classes for the duration of the cruise as well as all the sports equipment was put under lock and key. As far as access to dining areas, they started making everyone sanitize their hands and show their room cards before entering. The room card check stumped me until I found out they had confiscated the infected passengers room cards. They did that for the remainder of the cruise, which was fine, especially when it came to sanitizing hands. As far as the entertainment went, they only had 2 acts that boarded the 14 day cruise and stayed for a few days before leaving. The rest of the time there was a comedian, who was pretty good, that was married to the cruise director, 2 solo singing acts which were meager at best performed by the assistant cruise director and from one of the girls from the Oceania singer and dancer group. My point being saving money on entertainment appeared to be one of the goals of this now Norwegian-owned cruise line and it showed. Now, the reason we came on the cruise as I mentioned earlier was for the food! What a let down. When we went last spring on the Riviera we were definitely wowed! Not this time. It was still good and the specialty restaurants were still good, but they never reached the wow factor, except for maybe the Polo Grill and the Red Ginger. The rest of the time we ate outside up at the Terrace Cafe. However, most of the time we ordered from the grill because the prepared food was just so so. Again, nothing like the last cruise. As a final note Oceania did not compensate anyone on this cruise that we know of for their lack of being able to provide a quality cruise. It goes without saying this will be the last time we will sail on an Oceania cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
My husband and I were really looking forward to taking this trip because of the ease of leaving from Miami, and we live in Florida. We've been on the Riviera three times before so knew the elegance and luxury of this ship. ... Read More
My husband and I were really looking forward to taking this trip because of the ease of leaving from Miami, and we live in Florida. We've been on the Riviera three times before so knew the elegance and luxury of this ship. Unfortunately, the second day we started to hear rumors that people were getting sick. Then the captain announced that, yes, people were getting sick with suspected norovirus and CDC pocedures were put in place. That meant that the library was closed, also Baristas, no cooking classes and artist loft closed. Then they started to sanitize everything, and I do mean everything! The teak chairs in Waves Grill were sticky and clung to your back! No silverware was put on the table so everything looked sparse and empty. When you sat down in any restaurant, the table was empty. Then, the waiter came along and put down some plates and silverware, but no salt or pepper, or milk in the morning. The lounge tables were constantly wiped down and goopy, that's the only word I can think of. The atmosphere was completely lost! practically everyone we spoke to was afraid of getting sick. It ended up that 98 people were ill and had to be quarantined for four days. There were red tapes put on their doors so they couldn't leave, and their ocean cards were taken away so they couldn't go to the dining rooms. We had to show our cards every time we ate, even if it was an ice cream! And you couldn't go to the Terrace Café and bring anything back to your room because food was not allowed out of the café. Now, did we have a good time? Well, my husband and I enjoy each other and we met some really nice people so we had a good time. Aruba wouldn't let the ship dock so that port was cancelled. But, this was the second time out of our four cruises with Oceania that the virus has been in the ship and the last time we got sick! Norovirus isn't pleasant, to say the least. So bottom line, that is the end of Oceania for us. The only "compensation" anyone got was free drinks during dinner two days of the cruise and our waiter told us to keep quiet about it. We still don't know if only our table got the drinks or everyone did! How tasteless. There are many luxury lines in the cruising market and I just don't want t waste my money feeling afraid that I will get it. Pass on Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We went on a seven night cruise aboard the Riviera stopping in Key West, Trujillo (Honduras), Belize City (Belize), and Cozumel (Mexico). This was our first cruise ever (as a child I had once done an Atlantic crossing, but this was back in ... Read More
We went on a seven night cruise aboard the Riviera stopping in Key West, Trujillo (Honduras), Belize City (Belize), and Cozumel (Mexico). This was our first cruise ever (as a child I had once done an Atlantic crossing, but this was back in the 1970s), and we kind of splurged, celebrating my wife's speedy recovery from intensive surgery. We had an Oceania Suite, with over 1,000 square feet. The Riviera, simply put, is of pure elegance. She is not gaudy or over the top, but a thoughtfully put together example of fine design. The dining venues are wonderful, the staff and service highly trained and very international. The food choices were, to the most part, far better than very good. It was kind of funny - some people preferred, for example, the Red Ginger restaurant (Asian) over Polo's (steak house), so we did not go to Polo's with high expectations, only to be pleasantly surprised by the high quality. The Riviera is a more expensive ship, and therefore the audience that can afford to travel on her generally tends to consist on older retirees, so expect to see very few younger people. This has an adverse effect on the entertainment choices - musical selections in the Riviera Lounge, the only stage on the ship, were of a bygone era. Though the performers were very good, the actual productions simply failed to move us. Shore excursions ranged from so-so to very good. Trujillo still needs a lot of development - the town has just recently started to accept cruises. The glass-bottomed boat in Key West was a pure blast. We went to see the ancient Maya ruins in Belize - this was a very well put together tour, with expert guides. Cozumel was a lot of fun - this is the Caribbean's second-highest earner in cruise ship revenues, at the heels of St. Maarten. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This was our 2nd ever cruise, the first being 3 nights for my wife to decide if it was for her. Oceania Riviera is an amazing ship from end to end. We had a Penthouse Suite on deck 10. The size was at least as good as many 5 star hotels ... Read More
This was our 2nd ever cruise, the first being 3 nights for my wife to decide if it was for her. Oceania Riviera is an amazing ship from end to end. We had a Penthouse Suite on deck 10. The size was at least as good as many 5 star hotels we have stayed in, add to that the large veranda with comfortable chairs we had 7 nights of luxury all to ourselves. We had a butler who was so helpful although even the housekeeping itself was excellent with easily 3 visits a day. We never ran out of towels, toiletries or any other supplies. The ports of call were ok. Trujillo needs much work to make it a worthwhile port, Belize City a bit better and Cozumel is really quite commercial. The winner was Key West which was very pretty, fairly quiet and a nice place to be. We arranged our own tours in Key West and Belize City. They were both very good and far cheaper than anything on the ship. The Mayan ruins are worth seeing but only worth seeing once in whichever country you fancy. Now the Choice of eating places was truly exceptional. Personally we had some dietary restrictions but each and every restaurant went that extra mile to ensure we had lots to eat and lots of very good food to eat. The variation and selection by restaurant was incredible and clearly the added weight when we returned home was the result! The exercise track on the top deck must become a daily routine if you are to survive this cruise line. Entertainment was ok, not really for us. Think we joined the youngest 20% of guests and the selection was not our choice, but after all that food and drink all we needed to do was walk it off and sleep! The members of staff we had interaction with all treated us excellently and appeared to be 100% customer focused at all times. On Board Internet (Wi-Fi) was not great. The logon interface was long winded and half our free time was used up with the log off routine. It really doesn't need to be that difficult. Only criticism would be the very high cost of drinks packages that really should be reviewed. Amazing Cruise, Amazing Company, now looking to book the next one.... Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We received a email one day before cruise that our boarding would be delayed 1 hour because the ship had experienced the norovirus on the previous cruise and they were going to sanitize the ship. After two days a sea, the ship had 119 ... Read More
We received a email one day before cruise that our boarding would be delayed 1 hour because the ship had experienced the norovirus on the previous cruise and they were going to sanitize the ship. After two days a sea, the ship had 119 passengers and 3 crew members sick. The cruise was scheduled for 10 days but we were informed on the 7th day that the ship would return to Miami for a more extensive sanitizing. During the 8 painful days of cruising: 1. We were subjected to constant sanitizing of all surfaces on the ship including tables, chairs, railing, elevators, elevator buttons. 2. With so many crew members sanitizing, dinning and bar service was terrible. Meals came late and not all people at the table were served at the same time. 3. We had delays at ports due to the port authorities issues with a contaminated ship at their port. 4. With so many people quarantined in their room, you had to show your room key to enter the dinning room. This ship should have never left port. Oceania's response, 25% off the cruise with an additional 25% off the next cruise. We should have received more. Additionally, the staff on the ship was rude and impatience to hear any complaints. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
This was our first cruise on Oceania. Our first cruise in about seven years. Previously on Holland America and Celebrity multiple times. The Riviera and Oceania exceeded our expectations. We had read many reviews before our trip, some ... Read More
This was our first cruise on Oceania. Our first cruise in about seven years. Previously on Holland America and Celebrity multiple times. The Riviera and Oceania exceeded our expectations. We had read many reviews before our trip, some great, some good, some bad. So, I really wasn't sure what to expect especially after hearing all the scuttle about the noro virus. Embarking and disembarking the ship was seemless and best we have ever experienced on any ship. Ship was immaculate and staff constantly cleaning. After three or four days at sea there must have been a concern about noro because the staff seemed to be wiping everything down all the time. This subsided slightly after a few days. Heard no concern from staff or guests about noro. Glad they were being diligent. Food was outstanding. For breakfast and lunch we preferred to dine in the Grand Dining room when possible. Since we had early excursions some days we ate breakfast in Terrace café or in our room. Terrace for breakfast was nice especially dining outside when in port or arriving in port. Only complaint about Terrace is at times it gets a little hectic with people scurrying around getting their food. Breakfast assortment in Terrace was outstanding. If we got back on the ship in time for lunch we enjoyed the service and elegance of the Grand Dining room. Had lunch at waves twice and it was a struggle finding a table usually because we were getting there when everyone else was returning from excursions. Specialty Dining: We enjoyed six evenings in the specialty locations. While we reside in North Carolina, we have an apartment in Manhattan. I would rate the experience at most of the restaurants equal to or better than many of the finer restaurants in NY. Red Ginger was our favorite and we dined there twice. Service was incredible, Sea Bass was best we have ever had. Jacques was our second favorite but very close to Red Ginger. In NY there is a top tier of French places, maybe about 5 restaurants, and I would put Jacques just below those. Escargot was wonderful, loved the French Onion soup. Their lobster was magnificent. Enjoyed Toscona but not quite the level of Jacques or Red Ginger. Had a wonderful veal chop. Had a side of pasta that was excellent and sauce was perfect. Polo was our least favorite. Felt the server was below the level of the other locations. Ordered the big 32oz steak and was way too big, my fault. Steak to me tasted like run of the mill supermarket variety. My wife had a lobster that was not exceptional, just ok. Ate dinner one evening at the Terrace Café Grand Buffet. While the assortment was good, we just didn't care for the buffet style and getting up for our food. Sushi/sashimi was ok but not exceptional. Lobster tails were tiny and really not worth the effort or taste. Baristas café for coffee was always nice. Staff was great and always quick. This was a very pleasant feature to have. In general Riviera exceeded our food expectations with quality, service and presentation. All first class. We even had servers from dinner greeting us days later in different areas (staff all work in multiple dining venues throughout the day)by our last name. Lots of space on the ship and really never had an issue finding a lounger by the pool or wherever we wanted to sit. Cruise line is for adults primarily. On our cruise there were maybe a handful of toddler/infants and never really saw any school age children. When dining in the Grand Dining room for dinner we sat at tables for eight and once a table for four. We enjoyed meeting people from other areas and made the experience even better. We are outgoing so had no problems chatting with others. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Their are several reasons not to cruise with Oceania, especially on the Riveria. 1. Multiple norovirus outbreaks, 3 outbreaks since Dec. 2015. The latest one on March 20th. This is shortly after the massive CDC supervised cleaning ... Read More
Their are several reasons not to cruise with Oceania, especially on the Riveria. 1. Multiple norovirus outbreaks, 3 outbreaks since Dec. 2015. The latest one on March 20th. This is shortly after the massive CDC supervised cleaning that the ship underwent following the Feb. 12 outbreak. There is obviously a problem with the cleaning procedures on Riveria. Yes passengers or crew can bring the norovirus onto the ship, but that is true for all cruise lines, so why has the Riveria not been able to protect you as their guest from contracting this virus. See CDC website for the history of outbreaks on this ship and others. From now on this is the first website I check before picking a cruise ship. The second is Cruise Critic. 2. Very poor management response to these problems. We were on the cruise following the 2/12 outbreak. We were given no warning about the science experiment cruise we were to embark on. Oceania knew that crew was to be conscripted into cleaning chores versus providing the Exceptional Service that was promised in their brochures. The first three days were filled with chaos in the dining venues and stress filled ventures around the ship watching the crew apply massive amounts of disinfectant all over everything and I mean everything. Not relaxing. 3. No ships officers were seen during all this madness and management never acknowledged until the day before we arrived home that there many problems with service. They threw us a bone by offering a free drink. 4. The ethical way to have handled this situation would have been to contact the passengers before the cruise of (2/22 )since management knew at least 5 days before that the norovirus outbreak had occurred and offer us the option of not taking this cruise with a full refund since they could not guarantee that we would not be exposed to the norovirus. Or state that we would be sailing on a voyage that was less than promised in service and amenities and if we chose to take that chance offer a discount or not, but give the passengers a heads up. 5. Be aware that Oceania's response, if you are caught in one of the nightmare cruises, is I quote from a letter I received from Guest Relations "not a matter for which we can extend any form of compensation" even though they acknowledge that the circumstances on ship "was challenging for all involved". So to summarize Riveria has a history of Norvirsus outbreaks, Oceania has a poor response to this problem both in keeping you safe and in guest relations. Finally, when asked to compensate you as a passenger for less than what was promised even though they knew there would be problems on your cruise, their response is DECLINED, but come back and sail with us again. Fat chance of that Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
CRUISE ON THE OCEANIA RIVERIA DEPARING FEB 22, 2016. CABIN 7122 I have waited some time to reflect on this cruise, calm down and get over my disappointment and disgust. This was to be my first luxury cruise. As it turned out it was the ... Read More
CRUISE ON THE OCEANIA RIVERIA DEPARING FEB 22, 2016. CABIN 7122 I have waited some time to reflect on this cruise, calm down and get over my disappointment and disgust. This was to be my first luxury cruise. As it turned out it was the cruise from hell for the reasons listed below. Because of the reasons listed below it will also be my last on an Oceania cruise ship. 1. No notification that the prior cruise came in early due to norovirus, which had we known, we would have cancelled so that we would not be exposed to any lingering effects of the virus. 2. Long delay until we were able to get the room/more staff should have been on hand to handle the backlog that you knew would occur. Also water and snacks could have been served. 3. Bad crew attitude/unresponsive/little English 4. Our cabin was quite dirty with stained carpets and severe sweat stains on the chaise lounge chairs. We were told that the stains were due to the cleaner used to sanitize the carpets. No so. My boyfriend took a wet rag and black dirt readily came out of the carpet. This condition existed because the crew overlooked the dirt. Not what one would expect from a "luxury ship". We spoke with an individual who was able to get the carpets and chaise lounge seats cleaned while we were in Nassau. While it was better it was far from perfect. 5. Frayed robes 6. The common area carpets could use replacing-as could all the ships carpet and the comments thought the furniture looked aged. This ship is only 4 years old but looks 20. 7. What’s up with the thrusters?? We cruise a lot (9 in 14 months) and we have NEVER been so shaken awake at 8 am on 2 mornings as from the severe vibration when pushing into a dock. 8. Staff should clear prime window tables so others may use them. The dining room had a habit of saying none available instead of cleaning them right away—everyone wants a window seat so prepare for cleaning. 9.Wine menu expensive and not that good-We had a $55 bottle of Red Zin and it got worse as it breathed. Thought it was me but the guy next to me smelled it and didn’t even want to taste it. 10. We were the only couple told to finish eating and leave the buffet because it was closing while there were still people in the buffet line waiting to get food. There were some positives. The breakfast menu in the dining room is the best ever. The Red Ginger restaurant is superb. There were several crew members/servers who provided outstanding service. But the negatives still out way any positive. We have been on 9 cruises/3 different cruise lines in the last year and have enjoyed every one of them. Oceania is definitely not included in this group.They breached their contract to furnish a superior upgraded “luxury “ cruise failing to do so in many ways. It is sad to say that we have never wanted to leave a ship as much as we did when we hit the gangway to get off in Miami. We would have left in Nassau were we able to get our money back. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Right before the cruise, we received a letter stating that a certain percentage of the people were sick on the previous cruise and we could expect embarkation delays. Oh Boy! That was only the HALF of it. Embarkation was ok, with only ... Read More
Right before the cruise, we received a letter stating that a certain percentage of the people were sick on the previous cruise and we could expect embarkation delays. Oh Boy! That was only the HALF of it. Embarkation was ok, with only minor delays. Once on the ship however, we sat on a lounge chair for 3+ hours until we were demanded to attend a life preserver demonstration. With carry on bags in tow (no stateroom as yet), we attended the demonstration and finally our stateroom was available. Ok, we have a stateroom, but no luggage. We had to have dinner at the buffet because we were inappropriately dressed to dine anywhere else. Our bags were waiting for us in the hall when we returned. Now the real fun begins. Next morning, we attempted to have breakfast in the Waves Grill. Because of the virus, ALL surfaces had to be slathered down with an awful chemical solution (walls, railings, tables, chairs, etc.). The tables were wet and we had to wait till the "sanitation in progress" was complete. Breakfast was like a Chinese fire drill...Our order came, but it was next to impossible to get a staffs attention to get silverware, coffee and juice. Want salt and pepper? Wait, packets will come...not allowed to have shakers on the table. Half the staff was slathering chemicals and the other half were clueless. We heard a lot of the staff had walked out on the last cruise and therefore we were lucky enough to get the clueless ones. This nonsense went on for 4 days. What was our compensation? 2 hours of free booze in any of the lounges. Whoopee!!! I was glad there was going to be a launderette available, no need to bring a travel iron. Too bad it was closed ( thank you virus) and I would be charged to have anything pressed. What? Free wifi? Great...too bad there was no signal. We did luck out though...a pipe burst in the wall on deck 12 and the very expensive suites were flooded; those folks had to relocate. For once I was glad I was a peon on deck 7. Overpricing was rampant...excursions, wine, etc. Speaking of wine, if you purchased a bottle of wine on shore and wanted to enjoy it with your meal in one of the dining rooms, they charged a $25 corking fee!! What?! Needless to say, this cruise was a waste of a lot of money. We will NEVER use Oceania Cruises again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
It's unfortunate the norovirus was onboard as it was not a good start to this cruise. We were prepared though and thanked cruise critic message board for letting us know about the prior cruise , letter from CDC and to contact our ... Read More
It's unfortunate the norovirus was onboard as it was not a good start to this cruise. We were prepared though and thanked cruise critic message board for letting us know about the prior cruise , letter from CDC and to contact our travel agent and late boarding. We expected luggage and room delays and had our dressy clothes in a carry on. When we arrived in port at 2:00 there were long lines and our cabins not ready and luggage arrived at 6:00. This is not the norm as we have cruised with O before!! We made the best of a wet situation. As the comedian said "we had more water on the walls than in the sea and it was like being in a car wash!!! In all we had a great trip after we were cleared of the virus. We appreciated the service , crew , efforts they made to sanitize from the ceiling to the floors! We needed to laugh with the comedian! We had to change cabins as 7056 B2 had some obstruction and noise and was not marked that way,but they graciously moved us to 8th deck. Our cabin was not completed due to the rush job of putting everything back due to norovirus so we were pleased we moved. It was quiet in our new cabin too as the other one had a rattle behind the walls and we reported it We saw a penthouse cabin and we're glad we did not spend the extra $3,000 as it was not necessary! The private dining rooms were excellent. We made all our shared reservations online way ahead of time as well as the cooking class. We booked two private tours snd took only the short St Maarten tour. Recommend Real St Lucia 5 hr with Damian and VIP Tour with Sean in Antigua! Recommend Tet Paul Nature Trail walk. We loved it on st Lucia. Loved the entertainment. Sit up front! Interesting people to dine with. I'm gluten free and they made every effort to accommodate me with soy sauce,bread and a chocolate gluten free birthday cake and even pizza which was not so good! Other cruise lines could not have done any better in this situation with the norovirus. It's the guests that bring it on! In all we recommend this ship. It's beautiful ,classy ,comfortable and just the right size. It's for adults who don't want the contrived hype and constant photo ops and pushing spa services and announcements or pool games. We met comfortable retired well traveled couples and booked a future cruise for next March on the Marina. It's too bad there were so many negative reports. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
We left England on 20th Feb after an overnight hotel stay at Heathrow, flew to Miami for a stay in the Hilton Hotel which was a restful overnight stop before our cruise the next day. We have travelled on Riviera 2 years ago and had a ... Read More
We left England on 20th Feb after an overnight hotel stay at Heathrow, flew to Miami for a stay in the Hilton Hotel which was a restful overnight stop before our cruise the next day. We have travelled on Riviera 2 years ago and had a super, faultless cruise which is why we decided to book again this February. On the day of embarkation we were looking forward to joining the ship again, and were picked up from our hotel to travel to the port at 12.10 p.m. (a little earlier than 12.30, but where we expected to start embarking at 1.00 p.m.). However, on arrival we were informed that embarkation would not happen until 2.00 p.m. We had received no indication about this delay prior to the cruise, and the reasons behind it, so after eventually joining the ship it was extremely surprising to hear another announcement that we could not join our cabin until 4.00 p.m. So we sat on board with our carry-on bags. Again, at 4.00 p.m. there was a further announcement that access to cabins would still not be ready and we must wait. Just before 5.00 p.m. we were finally given the go ahead to join the cabins. We were relieved after this delay, and expected to start the cruise as normal but on arriving in the corridor accessing our our cabin everybody's luggage was lined up as far as we could see, and guests were trying to find their bags. On entering the cabin, it was not ready and very far from the usual very pleasant state we had previously experienced with Riviera. The bed was made but the cabin was lacking in many things and was quite a shock. As we had expected, we had to go for the usual safety lecture, still unaware of the whereabouts of our luggage, and the ship sailed at 6.00 p.m. After the lecture, we returned to the cabin and eventually found our 2 bags. We felt extremely sorry for the cabin and crew staff who were running around trying to produce the very large amount of luggage, which obviously neglected most of their usual duties. We are not blaming the cabin staff as they were doing two because of this problem. This totally unexpected and chaotic beginning to a fairly expensive holiday came out of the blue for us, and the fact that we were not informed prior to the trip was an extra problem. After querying this the next day with a senior member of staff, I was told that an e-mail was sent to travel agents late on 18th February (this we have not seen), and we do consider that Oceania should have also e-mailed guests directly in addition to contacting travel agents. We are regular cruisers and have travelled with other luxury cruise liners. The only indication we received about the virus problem, which had apparently affected 2 previous Riviera cruises before ours, was when we were actually on board - in the form of five A4 sheets of paper dated 22nd Feb about what to do, to keep on washing our hands, etc. etc. and the nature of Norovirus. Sanitation procedures were ongoing for 5 days with constant wiping of handrails, walls, lifts, tables, etc. and at lunchtime the buffet food area was protected by cling film. We realise that the crew had to do their best to provide the hygiene, but the fact that we were caught up in something that had happened before we arrived was not our fault. There was a note to all guests for a complimentary "happy hour" (cocktail, glass or wine, or beer) in the bars from 6.00-8.00 p.m. on 1st March to thank us for our "co-operation and understanding"! So, after arriving on the ship on Monday 22nd Feb, things were back to normal on Friday, 5 days after the start of a 10-day cruise. Throughout the cruise, we had a lovely cabin stewardess (plus an assistant) who worked very hard, during the first troubled period, and after the difficult event. The food remained very good throughout the cruise, even through the difficult first few days, and we booked four of the excellent A la Carte restaurants. We ate in the Grand Dining Room as well, where the food was also excellent. The only problem there was the system for allocating guests to tables, causing delays in seating. After requesting a table, guests wait in the lounge area and there is a strange system of the waiting staff trying to find the correct guests in the right order! I am sorry to start this review in a negative way but the problems were there, and it is difficult to rate the cruise overall because of the these problems, and I have given 4 points overall. This is because the food and staff service were very good, but it was just the initial disappointment of our arrival and disruption to services during the first 5 days, as well as the lack of prior knowledge. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This was a follow on cruise from two previous cruises affected by Noro virus. This was my 15th cruise on a variety of cruise lines but my first on Oceania. We took this cruise on the recommendation of a relative who had previous ... Read More
This was a follow on cruise from two previous cruises affected by Noro virus. This was my 15th cruise on a variety of cruise lines but my first on Oceania. We took this cruise on the recommendation of a relative who had previous experience with Oceania and liked the line a lot. Their recommendation said " while " pricier than others the food is spectacular". Sad to say this was the worst of our 15 cruises and the so called great service does not compare with our trips on Regent, Celebrity and even Holland America. While some reviewers act as apologists for Oceania by claiming "nor virus can happen on any cruise"; there is no doubt that poor handling and communications of the crisis worsened the experience for almost ever objective traveller. To start with the communications were terrible. There was no advance notice from Oceania staff at our hotel who acted as if all was well. Next on arrival at the ship there was a major delay in boarding as the company provided busses to a shopping centre to pass time. When asked what the problem was we were told "there are issues". This was a lame attempt to diffuse the issue in spite of the fact that a letter had been sent to travel agents a few days earlier. Upon boarding there were further delays as the staterooms were not available for hours. When rooms were finally available they were not made up fully, lacked soap, shampoo another items. The room had not been properly vacuumed or cleaned. It was clear that am major undertaking under CDC supervision had taken place to ensure the trip was not cancelled.This ship should not have left port until it was fully scrubbed and cleared instead of doing it on the fly. Clearly a decision that put revenue ahead of customer satisfaction and value fro the price paid. It took four days to get the ship cleaned. It appeared that 15 % if the crew wandered around with disinfectant wiping down anything that did not move. This only made the task of customer service more difficult for the depleted crew members still doing their job. The sticky surfaces on tables, chairs and anything else made it very difficult to even think that the food was great. It took five days before the restrictions were lifted and salt shakers could appear on the tables. Compared to Regent ( Higher price but all inclusive) or Celebrity Aqua class ( priced a lot lower) the food was average to poor and the service average. The crew was clearly stressed and we saw numerous disagreements and testy interchanges amongst crew members. The captain appeared to go AWOL as he was not seen or heard except for the daily noon update and the special dinners with multi trip Oceania Alumni. As an example of how poorly they handled the crisis when the ship had to divert to disembark a passenger with a serious health issue no announcement was made that it had nothing to do with the Noro problem. This led to significant speculation that the ship was in trouble again. While we did not come down with the virus we did experience sickness and stomach issue fro most of the cruise. I suspect it was caused by the chemicals use because as the second day after we left the ship the pains disappeared. The crew tried to do their best under difficult circumstances but there were very few smiles and a lot of complaining. The specialty restaurants were hit and miss. Some were good and others poor. Food was average and service hit and miss. On cruises we usually choose to sit at tables with others so we can meet new people and share experiences. After five days we chose to eat most of our meals alone because we could no longer take the negativity. The cruise line tried to satisfy the anger by holding an open bar for 2 hours as an apology gift. This was far short of what they should have done and needed to do. Most people on board agreed that the cruise ship never should have left the port. A refund of 50% of the value should have been returned to all passengers because this was not the service or the quality people had paid for and expected. The company should appreciate that they have damaged their brand with not only the passengers on board who felt cheated but also with their hundreds of friends to whom the story and experience was shared with upon return. ( For example my email to friends asking how our vacation went had the headline : CRUISE FROM HELL ... WORST VACATION EVER) It is highly unlikely that most new cruisers, or first time cruisers will ever give Oceania another try. Shore excursions were compatible with other lines but somewhat pricier. Some excursions were missed because of stomach issue noted above from the chemicals on the tables. In St parts when my wife bought goods at a local store the sales lady commented : "Oh you are from the sick ship": Clearly she had heard the horror stories as well. The entertainment varied from very good to amateurish. The comedian was truly outstanding and offered a good escape from the terrible experience on the ship. The singer soloist who had appeared in the "love Boat " series many years ago was ver good and a pleasant surprise. The cast of dancers paying tributes to broadway and tribute to the music of was amateurish and singing off key most of the time. In fact I heard a passenger chiding his wife that they should have taken an aisle seat so they could escape. Another passenger was heard to sat he "heard better singing from drunken salarymen in a Japanese Karaoke bar." Needless to say we did not go to their other shows. Disembarkation was confused and hectic. I suspect that was because people could not wait to leave the ship and head home. I found it ironic that passengers paid hefty prices for a vacation cruise that did not meet the promises and or their expectations were anxious to go home and rest. Summary: All in all a terrible experience that left a bad taste. A feeling that profit and revenue took precedence over service and value for the fare paid. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
We have been on 23 cruises and a variety of cruise lines including, Seabourn, Silver Seas, Crystal and Celebrity and Cunard, so we feel qualified to compare and comment. This was our second Oceania cruise, the first being on Regatta from ... Read More
We have been on 23 cruises and a variety of cruise lines including, Seabourn, Silver Seas, Crystal and Celebrity and Cunard, so we feel qualified to compare and comment. This was our second Oceania cruise, the first being on Regatta from Montreal to Miami in October 2015. The two reasons my wife and I took this cruise was (a) to see the Mayan ruins and learn something of their culture, and (b) to get some winter sun. We were satisfied with what we saw and learnt (despite the unreasonable cost of the tours), but disappointed by the unseasonably bad weather, which of course had nothing to do with the ship. The ship itself is beautiful, very elegant and tastefully finished. We found it significantly superior to Regatta which is older and smaller. In our opinion the size of the ship (1200passengers) is just right. The staterooms are adequate and the bathrooms larger than many other ships (including Regatta). Dining is of a very high standard in all of the restaurants, although wines, cocktails and spirits are overpriced. The quality of food is comparable with more expansive lines such as Seabourn, Silver Seas and Crystal, and we thought better than Regatta. Our only problem was seating. We were never able to be accommodated on a table for two, which is our preference, without being told to wait for up to twenty minutes. Being European we tend to eat later than Americans and at 8.00pm to 8.15pm we were told that the tables for two were all occupied. This was not true, as I availed myself of inspecting the dining room myself and found at least five or six empty tables for two. When I challenged the "greeter" I was told that others were waiting and that it would take time to set the tables up. This was nonsense as some of those tables were never occupied. As a result we walked in and sat at an empty table (unchallenged). What we saw of the entertainment was good, although because we eat later than many of the passengers we usually finished dinner closer to ten o'clock, halfway through the shows. On the final few days of the cruise the ship was plagued with norovius with at least 25 persons affected. We were fortunate and escaped it, although I understand that on the subsequent cruise at least 80 passengers were affected. I think the cruise line should have taken better precautions before sailing again! Despite the weather and the norovius, this was an excellent cruise experience and would consider Oceania for the future. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This is the first cruise I've been on in which it improved with each day. At first, I had misgivings & couldn't see any differences, but the overall service and attention to detail soon became apparent. The ship is ... Read More
This is the first cruise I've been on in which it improved with each day. At first, I had misgivings & couldn't see any differences, but the overall service and attention to detail soon became apparent. The ship is beautifully decorated with modern art and amphora vases throughout. It is kept immaculately clean. Our balcony cabin was very well appointed, the bedding was super soft and the marble bathroom had a stall shower in addition to a full size tub. Many thanks to Joel and Komong for your excellent service and ice deliveries each afternoon. The ship's library consisted of tall book cabinets making small cubicles within which comfy chairs and tables were placed. A reader could sink into a chair surrounded by books, enjoy a coffee and zone out. It was heaven!!! Dining was strictly done by servers at the Terrace Cafe. There was always a nice variety of food for breakfast and lunch, especially healthy ones which pleased me. Beverages were served tableside. The specialty restaurants were outrageously delicious. We did not try Red Ginger. The majority of passengers were 60+. We met many nice people from England, Canada and the midwest. Our trivia team BRITUS won the competition! It was a lot of fun and good times. Kudos to social director, Dottie Kolloso, who without a doubt, is the busiest social director on the seven seas. She can outperform the Energizer Bunny. We loved the casual dresscode, no photographers and no pushy sales people. It was a very laid back, lowkey cruise. We bumped into past Crystal cruisers who switched over because, according to them, Crystal had become too "stuffy". The in-room TVs never had good reception (satellite problems we were told), but we didn't care since we weren't on vacation to watch TV. I got my hair cut by JOSEPH. It was the best precision cut I ever received, so I rushed back to the cabin and took selfies so my stylist could copy it. Thanks, Joseph!!! The one complaint we had was the entertainment troupe was pretty bad. It amounted to a bunch of kids jumping around & screaming through their headsets. I suffered through two performances and opted to go to the casino after that. The magician, Greg Moreland, was good. He gave 2 magic tricks classes that were excellent. Also, harpist Shirley Dominguez, entertained us with her electric harp. In conclusion, the consistently very good food, specialty restaurants, relaxed dresscode, and lovely cabin amenities made it a cruise worth repeating. It truly is a "Your Cruise, Your Way" atmosphere. Skip this cruise if you are a family with kids because Oceania provides NOTHING in the way of Kidtertainment. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
We booked the Concierge Level upgrade for the Mayan Mistique cruise. First the pluses: - Lovely ship, elegant, well appointed mid-sized, never felt crowded, spacious verandah cabin and bathroom, lots of little 'extras' in ... Read More
We booked the Concierge Level upgrade for the Mayan Mistique cruise. First the pluses: - Lovely ship, elegant, well appointed mid-sized, never felt crowded, spacious verandah cabin and bathroom, lots of little 'extras' in the cabin - Very courteous if not genuinely friendly crew. - Amazing dining experiences in all specialty restaurants (Polo Grill, Jacques, Red Ginger, Toscana), and Grand Dining, as well as 'Terrace' (Buffet). Food and service 5-star. - Production shows were very well done and most entertaining. Performers were extremely talented. Especially enjoyed the 'World Beat' show. Minuses: - Adjacent cabin occupants were foreign teenage kids who managed to cause enough ruckus ranging from loud bangs and slamming furniture which would shake the wall with our headboard attached. We complained a number of times, but for the most part the problem persisted throughout the entire 10-day cruise. They and the parents denied any responsibility. Their group occupied at least several cabins. The Concierge felt that they were 'sincere' in their denials. - Pool deck restaurant and bar had very noisy slamming doors. Food mediocre. Smoking section outside permeated the adjacent interior corridor. - Internet took 15 minutes to download email... So our free 300 minutes between us didn't take long to get used up. - After flying all night from the west coast (free airfare)... The lounge areas both at Miami airport and at the port were hardly comfortable... Even at our upgraded 'Concuerge' level status, there was little notable difference in amenities and not much prioritizing of advance boarding status, from what we could tell. Could not access our cabin until after 1 PM. - Cruise ports offered mostly cookie cutter canned experiences of duty free (Diamonds International & Tanzanite) - which were hawked on-board prior to disembarkation. Most Excursions offered were rigorous physical activities, many involving hours of bus transport - not a lot of cultural offerings near port. Great opportunities if one does scuba, zip lining, trekking or at least some snorkeling. Safe to say that we would not likely repeat this itinerary... Or at least would think twice before even repeating a cruise on this line. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Slightly apprehensive as I was somewhat immobile for this trip.... and we were reliant on what the ship had to offer because we could not do any excursions or even get off the ship unless we were moored up as opposed to having to tender in ... Read More
Slightly apprehensive as I was somewhat immobile for this trip.... and we were reliant on what the ship had to offer because we could not do any excursions or even get off the ship unless we were moored up as opposed to having to tender in by lifeboats. we have cruised with Oceania before and we had high expectations - which were fully met this time. We need not have worried about being restricted to the ship, the enrichment programme was excellent, both lecturers very informative entertaining and quirky. And terrific variety. Both did not use notes and were extremely knowledgable and very friendly. Some lecturers can be knowledgable, others read form notes they have clearly read many times before and other simply cannot perform. The entertainment was interesting, we particularly enjoyed the pickpocket expert and have decided to increase our personal security both at home and when we travel, as a result of what we learned, again in an amusing way. The painting classes however were a disappointment. The artist was pleasant but did not know how to teach and he needed more guidance. I have done painting classes before and again, it is not good enough to be able to do something yourself, you have to be able to explain it to others! Not doing the excursions gave us the unexpected bonus of having the ship pretty much to ourselves when we were in port - blissful! also loved the old fashioned gentleman's library and the adjacent coffee bar and internet room...all very handy..... Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Was our second cruise on Oceania. The food, accommodations, and employees were top notch. We were upset about three issues. Not sure if it were my travel agent or the cruise line had the poor communications 1. 20 hours of port time ... Read More
Was our second cruise on Oceania. The food, accommodations, and employees were top notch. We were upset about three issues. Not sure if it were my travel agent or the cruise line had the poor communications 1. 20 hours of port time were cut from our interery. We were not advised until the day before each port of the changes. We had booked side trips with. Local companies that we could not keep because of our cut in port time. Attempting to receive a refund. For our missed trips. 2. Our interery for our flights made by Oceania were changed and we were not advised. Our scheduled showed we had a three hour layover indallas for our connecting time. When we got to Miami and received our boarding passes for the second leg of our trip it turned out to be an hour. We left 20 minutes late, waited while a plane was still in our gate in Dallas and missed our connection in Dallas on a holiday weekend. I'm sure someone knew about the changes prior to 24 hours. The prudent thing is to share this information with us. 3. In port, the registration desk had no $1-5 or 10's to make change which made it difficult to tip the people on the islands. Small details mean a lot. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Don't get me wrong we had a good time because we had 11 family members and a gang of friends onboard. We are all Crystal veterans giving Oceania a try because they had a much better Christmas itinerary than Crystal this year. ... Read More
Don't get me wrong we had a good time because we had 11 family members and a gang of friends onboard. We are all Crystal veterans giving Oceania a try because they had a much better Christmas itinerary than Crystal this year. Embarkation was a breeze, debarkation was unbelievably tedious, disorganized and my son missed his 11:00AM flight. We were told by Oceania (I called myself) that no matter how many children were onboard, there would be no programs or babysitters. We considered bringing a nanny, but decided the kids (5 & 8) could stay up some nights and the parents would turn in early some nights. Upon arrival, we were told there would be a kids orientation at 4:30. The kids club (what?) was amazing and getting a babysitter was not a problem. Such a big fuss about no kids, we hate kids, we don't want kids...on Oceania. Guess what...people don't leave their kids home at Christmas! Oceania get over it and say most of the year we don't encourage kids, but at the holidays we understand. Ship and cabins were nice. We had a Penthouse and it had a nice amount of space. Alternative restaurants, especially Jacques were very good. However, the dining room was not good at all. We began referring to it as the Mess Hall. Very inconsistent food and sometimes down right bad service. The first night our dover sole came with sauce on it and bones in it. Crazy! Terrace was great at breakfast and sometimes good at lunch. Waves, the service was ridiculous. Rarely got what we asked for. A glass of wine took forever. We did the prepaid drink package which was $5000 for our group. Very inconvenient having to give your card everytime we ordered a drink. Oceania has to figure out a less intrusive way to manage their drink inventory. Yes, that's what we were told it was for. There was no organized Bridge for my husband. Not happy. The advertised times of port debarkation were cut short at many ports. Leaving sometimes at 4:00 instead of 8:00. St. Barts, for instance. I made hair appt.s in advance throughout the trip. When I got onboard, they had no record of them. Not life threatening, but very inconvenient. The service on the pool deck was poor. No one made eye contact and offered nothing. Yes, if you asked, they got whatever it was for you, but no offers. Water???? We had booked two subsequent trips on Oceania. One for 35 days and another for 18 days. We have canceled both. We realized we are Crystal people. Until Oceania becomes All Inclusive and beefs up their service we're not going back. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Service was below average on this cruise! Cabin was comfortable.Fitness are good. Gambling was closed for the first few days. Tours were miles from ship which would have been ok if they were planned properly. Crew seemed confused most ... Read More
Service was below average on this cruise! Cabin was comfortable.Fitness are good. Gambling was closed for the first few days. Tours were miles from ship which would have been ok if they were planned properly. Crew seemed confused most of the time. One saving part were the lectures which were very good. Entertainment was poor. Food excellent but even to get that cup of coffee took too much time !!! ouch. We have traveled with Oceania many times and this cruise was a huge disappointment. Very unsure whether to sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Embarkation - This was horrific. At first all was being done orderly with numbers being announced. Mid way through the process this stopped and the announcement was made for everyone to board. The terminal was packed still with people and ... Read More
Embarkation - This was horrific. At first all was being done orderly with numbers being announced. Mid way through the process this stopped and the announcement was made for everyone to board. The terminal was packed still with people and the resulting line was terribly long. Instead of sitting and waiting to board we now were standing and waiting. Some folks got upset that others from the adjacent area were crashing the line. Reality was they were not. What bird brain decided to do this? The staterooms were not ready because on the previous voyage the norovirus struck and the crew was too busy washing down every surface on board. Cabins became available with the top deck first and the lower decks last. The Riviera was late departing Miami until it received clearance from the CDC. Life on Board - The ship is beautiful, elegantly appointed with no overboard obnoxious colors or art. There is no blasting music anywhere, photogs flashing strobes in your faces, nor obnoxious attendants begging you to buy drinks. In fact there are no photogs anywhere to be had. The poolside attendants were discrete and there are pool lounges enough for everyone even on sea days. The stateroom's bathroom is beautifully tiled in marble with a full tub and ultra tiny shower. If you are obese beware you will not be able to use it. Surprisingly, there were more than sufficient clothes hangers in the closet. This was a first for us on any cruise. If you are an early dinner diner you need to know all of the restaurants open at 630 and not before. There is only one show in the excellent theater usually very late. There are almost no columns in the theater to block your view and the seating aisles have sufficient room for you not to have to stand up to let people through. That was a relief. The service in the fine dining restaurants, at no extra charge, is outstanding along with the table set ups. The main dining room is up to the same standard. No reservations are accepted in the main dining room but we never had a problem with a table for 2. If you eat in the buffet this will not disappoint you either except the servers, and everything was served, did not always know what the food items were. The grill in the buffet served steak, shrimp, lobster and fish all made to order - all you can eat. Desserts were typical, they looked great and tasted not as good as they looked. My wife, who loves coffee, was disappointed in what was served but this is a personal opinion. The tables in the buffet were not always available for they had to be sterilized after each use. It took 10 minutes or more for the tables & chairs to dry. They could not be wiped down. Oh, even if the tables were ready it did not mean the chairs were. It was not comfortable sitting down only to realize your bottom was wet. Again, the sanitizing was due to the norovirus. There are no formal nights thank the lord. The 2 deck main staircase is adorned with elegant Lalique glass. At its bottom is an incredible Lalique table and vase. The mirrors in the area are also Lalique. Subtle elegance is the only way to describe this area. The shops on board are very limited in what they carry so make sure you bring everything you need with you. Even if you wanted to buy a gift the selection on board were very limited. If you have a walking issue keep away from cabins in the front of the ship. There are only two elevator banks, mid ship and aft. The elevators were fast and there never was a wait for them. The ship was under quarantine the entire 10 days we were on board. My wife could not handle the odor of the stateroom's sofa from the sterilization process. We were warned about this at boarding. Quarantine meant the self serve laundry facilities were closed and could not be used. The library is well stocked and frankly is like the rest of the ship, beautiful. The IT person we dealt with was outstanding in helping people connect their devices to the ship's internet system. Kudos to him. Disembarkation - It was one of the smoothest we experienced with our 2 pieces of luggage along side each other waiting for us. We assume this was done intentionally and if so it was much appreciated. Overall experience - The Riviera provides a comfortable, relaxing sailing experience. It's not for families with kids, there are no children's programs, nor is it a party animal, rah rah joe college ship (thank goodness). Smoking is extremely limited (another thank goodness). We enjoyed the cruise very much. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
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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