Sail Date: August 2019
We chose this cruise because of an itinerary that included southern Italy, Greek Islands (including Santorini and Mykonos) and Venice. After we booked, the Santorini port was changed to Gythion. This was very disappointing since we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of an itinerary that included southern Italy, Greek Islands (including Santorini and Mykonos) and Venice. After we booked, the Santorini port was changed to Gythion. This was very disappointing since we considered Santorini an iconic Greek island that we did not want to miss. As it turned out, weather prohibited us from tendering into Mykonos, so we missed both of the islands we had been excited to see. The embarkation for the Sirena was very smooth and quick, with our luggage being delivered to the room very promptly. All of the crew and port staff were friendly and made us feel quite welcome. Our stateroom was an inside stateroom. The room was about the size you would expect, and had lots of storage. One drawback is that my husband's suitcase did not fit under the bed so he eventually shoved it under the desk area to get it out of the way. Although the room size was not bad, the bathroom size was very bad. My husband and I are both on the normal to slim side, and we could barely move around in the bathroom and the shower. We had to shut off the water in the shower in order to soap up and then turn it back on to rinse off. I hit my head on the cabinet above the sink when trying to brush my teeth. While it was less than comfortable for us, I cannot imagine how it would feel for those who are not normal to slim body types. The cabin steward did an okay job, although one evening he forgot to service our room at all. That meant we did not get an itinerary for the next day. It just so happens that there was a time change that evening. Even though he put the itinerary on the door the next morning along with a reminder for a spa appointment, we did not get them until later in the morning after we returned to our room. I ended up being an hour late for the spa because we had forgotten the time change. Room service was prompt and the food was good. We ate at the Terrace Café almost every morning and most days for lunch if we were onboard. The food was good and had good variety. We ate in the Main Dining room at night or at Red Ginger or Tuscan Steak. The recommendations of the staff turned out to be very good in most cases. All of the food was delicious. The entertainment...ugh! And the reason for the title of this review. The entertainment aboard the ship is very much geared to an older clientele. My husband and I are in our mid-fifties but found the entertainment to be way beyond our years. I am not talking about current pop or rock hits necessarily, but at least something that appeals to people below the age of 70! While we appreciate a string quartet every now and then, it would also be nice to have an area that offers more contemporary music in a more robust environment. Maybe a piano player that plays some more current music, please???There was a night of rock music, so we got our hopes up a bit, but the rock was played by the string quartet. Really?!?!? We had an unscheduled day at sea (when we missed Mykonos) and the first thing that the cruise director scheduled was a meeting of the needlepoint club. The cruise director was not the high-energy type of person you normally see on other cruise ships but the older clientele seemed to appreciate that and love it. We did enjoy a nice wine tasting, although the price was a bit steep ($75pp). We booked with the OLife Choice, and chose the free shore excursions. All of the ship excursions were run well and the guides were very knowledgeable. The excursions did seem to be priced quite high, and other than the free excursions, we only booked one other ship excursion and did the rest with outside companies. Overall, the experience was quite nice, with a high level of service and good food. Oceania's clientele seems to be an older (70+), affluent crowd and they do a good job catering to that crowd. So while we ate well and were treated very well, we found the boat to be a bit staid and too geriatric for us at this point in our lives. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
We choose this as our first experience with Oceania, as it offered an itinerary to match an anniversary celebration. Travelling on a newly refurbished ship, and the marketing around service and food were deciding factors also. Up to now, ... Read More
We choose this as our first experience with Oceania, as it offered an itinerary to match an anniversary celebration. Travelling on a newly refurbished ship, and the marketing around service and food were deciding factors also. Up to now, we had only cruised Seabourn (4), Silversea (3), Crystal (1), Sea Dream (1). We enjoyed the cruise very much, but unfortunately some areas did disappoint. The marketing of this brand is excellent, but in my opinion, over promises in some areas, and under delivers in reality. THE SHIP The ship refurbishment in most areas was beautiful, but it was just a pity that they seemed to miss some areas. Specifically the Terrace restaurant which we found cramped in the buffet area, and the furniture and lighting is dated. The ambience was dreary. The serving areas very dated too. We would not sit inside, and were lucky to always find a space outside, albeit often sharing a table. All other dining venues were very pleasant on the whole, although personally we felt that the main dining room would have benefited from lighter window treatments, to make it a little more contemporary. Our penthouse suite was beautiful and I much preferred it to similar size accommodation on Seabourn/Silversea. You may have a smaller bathroom and no walk in closet, but storage was ample, and never using the bath, I appreciated the larger shower. We really enjoyed the width of the cabin and the light. All appointments were excellent. We visited a verandah concierge suite which was extremely cramped in my opinion. You have to remember that these ships are 20 years old, and even after refurbishment, they still don't come close to the modern style and layout of say the modern Seabourn and Silversea ones, with their wider spaces, light and modern stylish spaces. THE SERVICE We found the vast majority of staff to be cheerful and helpful The predominant asian waiting staff were efficient and cheerful, but sometimes things got lost in transition, and culturally it was not possible to build rapport over the week as we were able to do with the higher ratio of European staff on Seabourn/Silversea. Our butler was excellent and efficient. The cruise director - well.... he just made announcements and opened/closed the entertainment, and to be honest little else. A waste of a salary in my mind. I think that we must have been on auto pilot for much of the time also, because I have never been on a cruise with such invisible officers, if they actually existed. In fairness we did not go to the introduction evening, but usually officers interact, or are at least visible, throughout the cruise. This certainly did not happen. THE FOOD Ranged from average to excellent, but I'm sorry, Oceania most certainly does not offer the finest cuisine at sea. The Terrace restaurant was the biggest disappointment. Breakfast felt chaotic, and variety was lacking. We gave up on fresh egg orders, and those from the griddle. As with breakfast, the lunch variety was lacking. It looked good, until you realised that the buffet was a mirror image in parts with items repeated each side. I commend any attempt to reduce waste in buffet restaurants, but I also don't expect to be served basically everything and to be asked how many prunes I want, how many pieces of melon etc, not at the price we paid. This was annoying, and slowed everything down, adding to the chaos at times. Dining at the speciality restaurants was very enjoyable and we managed to change and secure extra reservations. Main dining room, was good - service extremely efficient. Waves grill was good, but again, lacked variety with the same menu board on the wall each day. Afternoon tea was excellent. In our opinion, the Terrace Restaurant should stay open 30 minutes longer for lunch and dinner. It would make a big difference to the feeling of being rushed, and having to rush in to get dishes before they closed. On the food side, I expected a lot more I'm afraid. PORTS All good and arrival/departure was handed well. EMBARKATION/DISEMBARKATION All efficient and quick. On reflection, we would possibly choose Oceania again, but only in a penthouse suite, and with more realistic expectations around service and food. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Our first Oceania Cruise was on the Marina and we were so “wowed” we booked the Sirena to sail 5 months later. We did not come back from this one overwhelmed with a sense to book the next one ASAP. First, the things that were a ... Read More
Our first Oceania Cruise was on the Marina and we were so “wowed” we booked the Sirena to sail 5 months later. We did not come back from this one overwhelmed with a sense to book the next one ASAP. First, the things that were a little less than fantastic The spa deck was very small and hard to find a seat on some days. So, the concierge upgrade was not really worth the money. The bathrooms were very tiny and, we knew going in it was a smaller ship but, if you are on the toilet with the door closed it was sideways sitting. The room stewards were not as intuitive as to what we needed. For example- on day one we had champagne in a bucket that we didn’t drink on boarding as in it was more fun after sail away. When we came back to the room to drink- the bucket was gone and the champagne on the counter. We had to call to get the bucket back. The buffet restaurant was not quick with water, tea or coffee. Most breakfasts we had to flag someone down to get us more. There was link flexibility in changing restaurant dinner times even with empty tables. The good- heck it is still a fantastic line! The food is fantastic and who doesn’t like grilled lobsters. Honestly, the best food you can have at sea. The main dining room and speciality restaurants had great service. The ship is very clean. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Ports: We chose this cruise mainly for the ports... and they were beautiful. For Santorini, 5 ships were there, was really crowded, and long wait to come back down on the cable car. Otherwise, we had great weather and enjoyed the ... Read More
Ports: We chose this cruise mainly for the ports... and they were beautiful. For Santorini, 5 ships were there, was really crowded, and long wait to come back down on the cable car. Otherwise, we had great weather and enjoyed the cruise. Ship: Just remodeled in Marseilles France May 2019 so looked great. The decor has all been upgraded, all new cabins, and mostly new public spaces. The ship is small by today's norms but was a good size for getting around and also seeing folks you met along the way again. Cuisine: Although the lead tag is "Finest Cuisine at Sea," for this cruise, it fell short... at least compared to cruise we took on their Marina December 2017. There is much to pick from as far as selection... maybe too much ? I had cold eggs in the Terrace Cafe, lukewarm coffee at high tea one afternoon, tough lobster in Tuscan steak, dry and tasteless salmon in the main dining room, etc. I realize perfection is not possible over 10 days and so many passengers, but it was overall much better on our Marina cruise. We indeed had some decent dishes over the 10 days, but not great. `1 Specialty Restaurants: Waves Grill must be noted as doing the best job on consistently good food (burgers, grilled salmon, smoothies, shakes) but the other spots need to get to that level. Red Ginger was better on this cruise than Marina; not great but better. Tuscan Steak was o.k. Service: seems to always be a bit unpredictable but the best was from seasoned employees who have been with the company for many years. Ship was full... totally booked... so that maybe affected overall food and service ? Entertainment: Cruise Director Julie James is a bundle of energy and did a great job. Six singer/dancers, five piece band, and four strings, and a few guest appearances managed to hold down the fort and keep us entertained. This is a small ship, so if your big thing is activities and entertainment, go on a big boat ! Cultural/corporate: The company is (understandably) extremely marketing focused. We constantly receive very slick brochures, promotional e-mails, etc. Maybe some of this effort needs to be shifted towards details of the passenger experience, however. I think one way to improve here is to have more women in higher ranks on the ships as ours had maybe two in their very large group of ship leadership when they were introduced. There seems to be some progress being made on this in the industry, but that that was not the case here. As younger folks eventually start taking cruises, they will notice this, it will matter, so I think it would behoove Oceania to improve on this, which would likely also improve the quality of the passenger experience. Overall: Very good company, would cruise again in the future, but maybe temper my expectations a bit. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We arranged this cruise to South America whilst on our previous Oceania cruise which was on Marina. We were prepared for the smaller ship and looked forward to the experience. We were in stateroom 7076, a Concierge room. We had previously ... Read More
We arranged this cruise to South America whilst on our previous Oceania cruise which was on Marina. We were prepared for the smaller ship and looked forward to the experience. We were in stateroom 7076, a Concierge room. We had previously read how small the bathrooms are, believe it, they are tiny. The ship is about to be refurbished and shower curtains replaced with doors. I cant imagine how anyone on the slightly larger side will get in and shut the door. Most of the ports were interesting especially Paracas and Punta Arenas. We enjoyed seeing many different penguins, birds and sea lions. This is very much a nature, rather than a cultural cruise. Evening entertainment was variable, but on the whole good. There were many sea days with very little going on. There were 2 lecturers, one on wildlife and one on Ocean sustainability. Both were good, but that still left too much time with nothing going on. As a Bridge player I appreciated the supervised Bridge, my husband did a lot of reading. On sea day when the weather was inclement it was difficult to find somewhere to sit and the Terrace restaurant was mayhem. They should open the Main dining room for much longer. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
The itinerary was spectacular from hot Buenos Aires to chilly Falkland Islands, around the Horn into icy Patagonia, then back into warmer climate into Peru. So, we did not use outdoor spaces much for about half the trip. Favorite stops ... Read More
The itinerary was spectacular from hot Buenos Aires to chilly Falkland Islands, around the Horn into icy Patagonia, then back into warmer climate into Peru. So, we did not use outdoor spaces much for about half the trip. Favorite stops were Punta Del Este, Falkland Islands (so many penguins), Amalia Glacier in Patagonia, Chilean Andes from Coquimo, Orsorno Glacier from Puerto Montt, Valparaiso, Ballestas Islands from Pisco, Barranco district of Lima. We made it safely and without incident to every scheduled port. Naturalist on board was good and some of the entertainment, musicians were really special. The staff was great and it was nice to return to a sparkling room every day and night. The restaurants were good but Red Ginger was outstanding. The menu in the main dining room was different most nights. Buffet is great for breakfast, outdoor grill is nice for mid-afternoon snack after a day on tour. Baristas was very nice for a leisurely coffee and pastry. Martinis was a fun place to gather with new friends before dinner. Never used the casino and we did not participate in many on-board activities except for the single malt tasting which was fun. Note: organize land tours with a small group (8-12 people) on your own as we did. These land excursions can be the best part of the experience. An excursion with 25 folks on a bus is quite limiting, and the prices for small group ship tours are quite high. Final analysis: we would definitely cruise with Oceania again and look forward to it. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Nice ship. Love the size. Nothing to do during the day. The food was very good. Limited selection for breakfast and lunch, but what there was - was very tasty. Balcony room is very small...Bathroom is terrible, but will be redone in ... Read More
Nice ship. Love the size. Nothing to do during the day. The food was very good. Limited selection for breakfast and lunch, but what there was - was very tasty. Balcony room is very small...Bathroom is terrible, but will be redone in the near future. TV was the size of my computer screen, but also will be replaced in dry dock. Asked to be seated at a shared table and twice was sent to a table for four, and did not share. Enjoyed meeting people; do not like getting our request for a table for four or six not honored in the main dinning room. Red Ginger was okay. Cuba was interesting, but not yet ready for Americans. They even state this in their literature. The pool is very small. Four or five people and it is crowded. A bit hard to get into and especially out of the pool. No easy steps to get out... Very few shops. They need to offer more drug store style items. Almost no way to spend our money on this ship. The drinks were very expensive ($13.00 per glass+ tip). Embarkation and disembarkation was very easy. Delayed about 30 minutes because of a rainstorm, but then went very fast. We were lucky in that the weather was wonderful the entire week. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
I’m an avid cruise enthusiast and a longtime reader of Cruise Travel Magazine. In planning our travels, I do a considerable amount of online research. This was our first trip with Oceania. Our cruise on the Sirena from Miami to Cuba, ... Read More
I’m an avid cruise enthusiast and a longtime reader of Cruise Travel Magazine. In planning our travels, I do a considerable amount of online research. This was our first trip with Oceania. Our cruise on the Sirena from Miami to Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Nassau was truly one of our better cruise experiences. Oceania’s four small sister ships, originally built for defunct Renaissance Cruises, do not earn high marks for their tiny bathrooms, so-so entertainment, and a very limited variety of shipboard activities while at sea. But as described in the company’s colorful and prolific advertising, these ships are intimate and luxurious. Their guests (us included) are typically seasoned travelers enjoying their Golden Years. Anyone seeking budget prices, a party atmosphere, Las Vegas-style entertainment, and/or children and teen activities will surely be happier on a different cruise line. For the Missus and me, the promise of an immersive itinerary and a high standard of service are what brought us to Oceania. Our itinerary featured FOUR days including one overnight in Cuba. At-sea days were nicely interspersed with port days; the former were a welcome opportunity to relax and savor onboard life. Not a fan of shuffleboard, Mahjong, etc., between ports I was content to sit on deck, keep up-to-date with email, and eat myself silly. Oceania touts the “Finest Cuisine at Sea” and theirs ranks among the more extravagant chow we’ve experienced on a cruise. The food in the Terrace Café, Waves Grill, and Grand Dining Room was generally very good and of high quality. We encountered a couple subpar dishes (watery pasta and tough steak) which our servers cheerfully replaced. Bear in mind that food onboard is typically prepared in “banquet” quantities. The exception is the food in the specialty restaurants—Tuscan Steak House and Red Ginger—which, along with the service, was absolutely outstanding. All of Sirena’s staterooms and public areas were scheduled to undergo a “sweeping array of dramatic enhancements” (in one word, refurbishing) during Spring of 2019. We don’t understand why this was necessary because the Sirena underwent a major revitalization in 2016 that gave it a fresh and elegant look. Oh, alright, the Grand Staircase with its faux skylight did look a bit cheesy. We had a few other nits to pick. The Cruise Director seemed aloof and seldom mingled with guests. The ship’s two boutiques, featuring high-end jewelry and fashion, offered relatively few moderately-priced-to-inexpensive items. We disputed two bar charges to our shipboard account. One was for “half-price sail-away mojitos” that were billed at full price; ditto “2-for-1 Happy Hour” drinks. Due to protocols, it took a while for our account to be adjusted. Apart from booze plus fees for some optional activities (e.g. Bingo) and services (e.g. Canyon Ranch Spa), Oceania is a welcome respite from companies that nickel-and-dime for every little extra. There are ZERO surcharges for alternate dining, steamed lobster, cappuccino, soda pop, ice cream treats, and room service. Internet (speed improved) is free and unlimited, a vital perk that other cruise lines have been slow to offer. Oceania’s OLife option includes roundrip airfare plus a choice of free shore excursions, free beverage package, or shipboard credit. My advice? Compare airfares first. Then, if you go for the option, request the shipboard credit (you can apply this towards gratuities) and make your own port arrangements for considerably less than the cost of Oceania’s overpriced and underwhelming shore excursions and transfers. In Cuba and elsewhere, visitors are under no obligation whatsoever to purchase the cruise line’s shore excursions. I seldom use the word “fantastic,” but this adjective perfectly describes the caliber of service we received from both our stateroom attendant and the servers in the various dining venues, all of whom were extraordinarily friendly and considerate. We celebrated a birthday onboard and the staff went far beyond the call of duty to make our occasion memorable. We’re looking forward to future cruises with Oceania. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
As this was our first visit to Cuba (but by far not our first cruise), we were a bit nervous about visas, licenses, etc. for US citizens. Oceania arranged for our Cuban visa, and we checked “Support for the Cuban People” on our license ... Read More
As this was our first visit to Cuba (but by far not our first cruise), we were a bit nervous about visas, licenses, etc. for US citizens. Oceania arranged for our Cuban visa, and we checked “Support for the Cuban People” on our license application. We had no trouble exiting the ship and finding our independently-arranged excursion guides. (We booked all of our tours ahead of time. Be sure to choose OFAC-compliant tours if you are a US citizen booking tours on your own rather than through the cruise line.) We were also a bit nervous about the condition of the ship, given some negative comments we’d read. We booked a concierge level veranda suite about 18 months prior to our sail date. The bathroom was remarkably small and not at all luxurious. The sleeping area is also very small, but of course, the Sirena is a relatively small ship with fewer than 700 guests. The bedding was very comfortable, especially after we requested a regular blanket. The down comforters are quite warm! Public rooms were in good condition, but we heard some complaints about missing tiles in the pool area. Don’t look for the bells and whistles of other lines. There are no photographers on board, the cabin attendants don’t create those clever towel animals, and from our perspective the activity schedule was very light. The lecturer, Sandy Cares, was phenomenal. We really appreciated that her lectures were recorded and available through the TV in the cabin. Food was a disappointment. We had high expectations, given how extensively Oceania promotes its culinary offerings. Presentation was careless, many dishes were bland, and several dishes either had extra ingredients or were missing ingredients. It was troubling to discover plates and utensils were dirty. On a luxury cruise line (on ANY cruise line, really) one shouldn’t have to send dishes back because they’re not as described or the serving ware is dirty. We’ve sailed on Regent and Silversea, and prefer their quality over Oceania. We absolutely appreciated the opportunity to visit Cuba, and the itinerary was excellent. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Three couples from their 60-80s wanted to see Cuba in luxury . This cruise overnights in Havana ( could have used another day) and had two more interesting ports. We had been on the Sirena when it was owned by Princess. We took the same ... Read More
Three couples from their 60-80s wanted to see Cuba in luxury . This cruise overnights in Havana ( could have used another day) and had two more interesting ports. We had been on the Sirena when it was owned by Princess. We took the same cabin ( now called penthouse suite) on Princess in Tahiti it was called a mini suite. It is a large lovely room with a renovated bathroom. The other two couples took A1 thinking their cabins would be like the new Marina. They spent the whole cruise complaining about the tiny shower with a flapping curtain. My cabin had a terrific walk in glass enclosed shower with great storage and wonderful bed and bedding. Towels are fluffy. Bring an electric surge protector as there are limited outlets. Balcony is skinny and the two wicker chairs have no footrests . I stuck my feet thru the railings. The food is very good, especially the two specialty restaurants Tuscan Grill and Red Ginger. The miso sea bass melts in your mouth. The main dinning room has service shortages. They are running around like chickens without heads. The buffet is ok and Waves makes a great burger at lunch. Ice cream is everywhere. Entertainment is poor. The Sinatra show the best. The young singers try hard but except for a funny ventriloquist it is pretty bad. The cruise director runs a great cut throat trivia that we found fun. The real problem are the excursions. Oceania messes up royally. We spent hours picking our tours and booked the passport collection. Very pricey as you cannot legally go off on your own. The ship gets the $75 visa for you. There are two US government officials on board watching. Some people did it anyway and took their chances. Tours were canceled the day before. Some were flipped from morning to afternoon then the morning tour came back late and you couldn’t go. No time to take a ride in the cars unless you book it as a $450 excursion. No reimbursement or apology. Told it was Cuba’s fault but I paid my money to Oceania! The best was the Tropicana nightclub . And you can take phone photos no charge. Spectacular!! The young tour guides spoke English well and just want the Embargo over. The country is very poor. Beautiful colonial buildings so shabby . The classic cars fabulous to see. A very interesting trip. Great hot room service breakfasts on port days. I would definitely go back. And a cruise makes it a comfortable way to see it. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
My husband and I were on Oceania Marina for the Baltic cruise a few years ago, so we expected similar experience this time even though it's a different ship. Somehow Sirena did not turn out as good as Marina. Even though Sirena was ... Read More
My husband and I were on Oceania Marina for the Baltic cruise a few years ago, so we expected similar experience this time even though it's a different ship. Somehow Sirena did not turn out as good as Marina. Even though Sirena was refurbished two years, it still shows some wear and tear. The bathroom is a bit small. But the bed and pillows are very comfortable. Food in the Grand Dining Room is not as good as Marina, so are the Specialty Restaurants. Red Ginger is a disappointment as the food is too salty. Service-wise, the crew and room attendants are very friendly but not as personable. I do not know whether it is due to a shorter cruise this time. We only joined one ship excursion in Santiago de Cuba. It is very disappointing as the guide brought us to watch a traditional Cuban performance which was not listed on the description. The time would have been better spent in the historical city center. Besides, when we were at the Morro Castle, the guide just dropped us off to wander around, without giving any information about the different areas of the castle. We chose Oceania mainly because of itinerary and the anticipated good food served on the ship. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
This is the first time we have used Oceania. We chose this cruise because it is about the only cruise line which circum navigates Cuba. This gave us the opportunity to visit 3 ports, Havana for 2 days, Cienfuegos and Santiago de Cuba. ... Read More
This is the first time we have used Oceania. We chose this cruise because it is about the only cruise line which circum navigates Cuba. This gave us the opportunity to visit 3 ports, Havana for 2 days, Cienfuegos and Santiago de Cuba. We also chose Oceania because we have friends who rave about Oceania service and the food. We boarded the ship with very high expectations. Firstly, let me say the staff on Oceania are second to none. They are friendly, helpful and hospitable. Our steward did a remarkable job keeping our cabin up to the mark. The food presentation is remarkable, all food including the buffet presented beautifully. However, the ship itself is old and tired. And it shows. We were told that 4 of Oceania ships are getting a $100 Million refurbish in the future, which will make a big difference. We bought the premium drinks package, and they do serve premium brands. At happy hour there was such a rush on drinks, we were able to wait until the bars had cleared and there was seating in the lounges because of the package. Otherwise there was always a queue of people waiting for drinks. The staff at these times are flat out, but other staff were not recruited to help out. The food itself was disappointing at times. Breakfast in the Terrace Cafe (buffet) was very good, and food was served by staff rather than helping ourselves (possibly because of contamination). Meals at Lunch also very good, both in the Terrace Cafe and the Main Dining Room. In the Terrace Cafe, at the salad bar, the same dressing was served every day when we ate there, no other choices offered. Service was always very good in these venues. Dinner at Red Ginger and the Steakhouse excellent. Dinner in the Main Dining Room in the evenings was a bit hit and miss. Two of my meals, the Osso Bucco and the Roast Lamb were practically inedible. The Osso Bucco was dry and stringy and the Roast Lamb, although rolled, was tough and dry. My husband also had Roast Lamb, his was much better, so we shared it. Mint sauce was not offered and when we requested it, never arrived. We liked the small ship concept of Oceania. However, the age of the ship did not appeal to us. Would we go on Oceania again? Possibly, if the itinerary was something that appealed. However, we went to the Future Cruises Talk and there is nothing new for us for the next couple of years. The one cruise we would have considered, from Santiago to Auckland NZ is available for 2019, but not 2020 when we would like to do it. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
3rd Oceania cruise, 2 on the Marina. this is a smaller ship that the Marina, so it had fewer specialty restaurants but this didn't matter that much. What it did lack was any WOW factor. I hope this will improve when the ships are ... Read More
3rd Oceania cruise, 2 on the Marina. this is a smaller ship that the Marina, so it had fewer specialty restaurants but this didn't matter that much. What it did lack was any WOW factor. I hope this will improve when the ships are redone. EMBARKATION: arrived at port around 1:00 and probably was on ship by 1:20. We went to lunch which was fine. Rooms weren't ready until after 3 for us, because of an "inspection" of the ship. CABIN: We were in an inside cabin, which was small and the bathroom was tiny. DINING: we ate in both specialty restaurants, red ginger twice and tuscan steak houseonce. Food was excellent, service not so much. 20 minutes to get a soda. Dinner at steak house took more than 2 hours, causing us to miss 9:30 show. Staff in main diningroom at times seemed overwhelmed. Food was ok. As far as the buffet, eggs at breakfast were some type of liquid that was not very good. food at buffet was just fair. Even the Surf and turf sandwich at the grill were mediocre . (on marina, they were great) ENTERTAINMENT; surprisingly excellent. For a small ship, we were not expecting muchand we were pleasantly surprised. Also the enrichment program was terrific. Sandra Cares was beyond exceptional in her presentations. We appreciate that these were televised at a later time on the TV. The gym classes were also very good. I took spin, stretch, yoga and pilates. the room was small, so sign up early. I was closed out of a spin class. SERVICE: oUR housekeepers were great, and all staff were friendly and made you feelat "home" rather than needing to sell you something as on other cruise lines. PORTS; We took private tours and I was not impressed by our tour guide, althoughit was much cheaper than Oceania excursion. We went to Havana which was disappointing in that many places were so run down and frozen in time (and not in a good way) We also went to Cienfuegos, and took an hour fifteen drive to the city of Trinidad that I didnt think was worthwhile, but others in our group liked. Santiago wasour last stop, we did this on our own. Walked a 1/4 mile uphill to a main square wherethere was a church, a building that Castro gave his famous speech, and museum calledthe "old house" which was interesting and worthwhile. disembarkation: we walked off and it was quite easy Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Oceania is a fantastic cruise line, up there with the best. The crew were second to none and the food is of course exemplary. We never had a problem finding sun loungers (despite many shaded sunloungers being reserved every day) and there ... Read More
Oceania is a fantastic cruise line, up there with the best. The crew were second to none and the food is of course exemplary. We never had a problem finding sun loungers (despite many shaded sunloungers being reserved every day) and there were many day beds available at all times too. The show lounge is called the Sirena lounge and it is more akin to a bar/lounge rather than the more typical double height theatre that you get on slightly bigger ships than Sirena. My comments on the cabin are below. We travelled as a family with four daughters and we were made especially welcome, particularly by the entertainment team who appreciated guests who were more similar aged to themselves! The ship was run extremely well and everything went smoothly. From the reception staff, the restaurant waiters to the room attendants, everyone made sure that we never queued for anything and it helped make our holiday superb. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We recently returned from an eleven day cruise from Rome to Venice on the Oceania's Sirena. We picked this cruise because of the itinerary. The Oceania did an excellent job of getting to every port as scheduled so we had ample time ... Read More
We recently returned from an eleven day cruise from Rome to Venice on the Oceania's Sirena. We picked this cruise because of the itinerary. The Oceania did an excellent job of getting to every port as scheduled so we had ample time at each port to explore. My only complaint is that we tendered twice, and the tender boats were very uncomfortable with no fans and very hot. We have been on four cruises, twice with the Princess, once with the Azamara and now the Oceania. In comparing the cruise lines, we found the rooms very similar. We did not have a balcony on the Oceania since the additional cost seemed very high but the porthole was a very nice size. The Princess does not charge nearly as much for a balcony. I think the bathroom/shower was best planned on the Oceania and the staff cleaned the room promptly. The Oceania advertises that they are famous for their food. I actually found the food disappointing. Buffet breakfast was fine although I did not like their orange juice. We did not have lunch since we were touring. However, based upon our room status we were only entitled to make reservations for two nights at the specialty restaurants. Red Ginger is indeed special. From the moment we were seated, we were treated royally. The menu was quite interesting, and it was truly a delightful dinner. We also enjoyed the Tuscan Grill but the overall experience was just not as special as Red Ginger. We were lucky to be seated at the front of the ship in that restaurant and had a stunning view as we left the port. My disappointment was with the main dining room. I found the portions very small, and I did not find the overall quality exceptional. Once I ordered sea bass and it was not very good. Another night I ordered steak which was not a good cut. You could order as many sides as you wanted but I would have preferred a better overall meal. On the Azamara they would serve free interesting wines with dinner and that certainly helped the overall atmosphere. I just did not find the staff all that engaging on the Oceania. The Sirena offered less entertainment than the other cruise lines. There was an evening show but the problem was it was a small stage without any slope in the theater so unless you were up front viewing was difficult. We had a singer twice(he was fine), a comedian twice(better the first night) and a mime /magician (poor). The troupe of eight also performed and they were enjoyable. The Princess being a larger boat had a much more professional theater and show. The only sports offered was one outdoor ping pong table, a shuffleboard court on a rubber surface making it unplayable, and a small putting green. There was also a small running/walking track. The pool was tiny but there were two Jacuzzis. Since every day was sunny and over 90 degrees the pool was used. The card room was very small and there were no organized games. The Sirena did have an excellent lending library. I found the gym to up to date modern equipment. Children are not encouraged on the Oceania and there were no organized activities for them. Some of the other cruise lines hire guest lecturers to talk about the upcoming ports. I think the Sirena was very weak in this area. There was trivia every afternoon and this was popular. I probably would not go on the Oceania again unless the itinerary was one I could not find elsewhere. I think other lines give you more value for less money. Finally, since I prefer modern , I found the décor of the Sirena not that attractive and tired looking. However, since I picked this line for the itinerary of the cruise I was not disappointed by the cruise since I enjoyed our ports of call. I find that part of the fun of travelling is planning the trip so I do a lot of research. I never sign up for excursions provided by the cruise line since they are over-priced. My travel agent suggested using Shore excursions but I also found this company to be too expensive. A third alternative is to use Viator which partners with local tour companies and offers more value for your dollar and more variety of tours. However, we made the decision to find private tour guides where possible. This can be expensive if it is just one couple because usually the cost of adding two more people is nominal. We mentioned our planned tours on our cruise line blog and were lucky to find another couple to join us and the four of us thoroughly enjoyed the tours. Day 1 Amalfi- I had always wanted to visit Pompeii. Unfortunately, I did not find any tours leaving from Amalfi going there. I found a company called Benvenutolimos.com that would arrange to give us a driver for eight hours who would take us to Pompeii and Positano and tour the Amalfi Coast. They arranged for a private tour guide inside Pompeii. Giovanni was an excellent driver. He first took us to the scenic town of Rafello for a short stop. His English was excellent and we learned about the Amalfi Coast and its history and culture as he made hairpin turns through breathtaking terrain. He then took us to Pompeii where we met our tour guide Salvatore. As we strolled along ancient Roman streets, Salvatore described what is was like to live in Pompeii 2000 years ago. Pompeii is amazingly preserved. After this tour, we drove to Positano to get a brief glimpse of this upscale beach town. It was a full 8 hours of touring, and I compliment Benvenuto tours for planning a very enjoyable day. Day 2-Sicily- we docked in Taormina for our tour of Sicily. We arranged to be met by Luca from info@sicilylife.com. and again our driver was very professional. We first stopped at a local honey farm, and then we drove to Mt. Etna. Cars are limited to about 7000 feet and from there you can plan hiking excursions. We took a small hike and admired the incredible landscape where gorges were cut into the mountain from lava flows. After Etna, Luca took us to a local winery where we spent a very pleasant afternoon tasting local dishes and sampling wine. We enjoyed our day with Luca and would recommend his company. Day 3-Malta- we docked in Valletta, Malta and were met by Karl from Karlito's Way, and by the end of the day we felt we had a great understanding of Malta. Karl wanted to show us traditional Malta whether it was taking us to traditional neighborhoods, restaurants, or vistas. During the course of the day we circled the entire island seeing all of its most beautiful areas while we talked politics and philosophy. By the end of the day we felt Karl had become a friend as well as a tour guide. We consider our time in Malta very special and would highly recommend using Karl. Day 4-at sea. Day 5 Argostoli-Greece-we could not find a private tour guide so opted to use Viator. Although we were in a bus and the tour was not nearly as personal, the tour was a successful. We visited a monastery, a cave which was actually used for concerts, a fishing village, and the most impressive stop was a rowboat ride in an underground lake/cave. The island was quite picturesque so this port was well worth a visit. Day 6 Durres, Albania. We used a Hong Kong company called tour HQ which has a lot of host tour guides throughout the world. Basically, HQ gives you a list of potential local guides and their biography and then you select one. Although I selected a guide months before and had the trip confirmed, he cancelled just prior to my trip. Luckily, HQ did assist in finding me a replacement guide. Durres was probably the only port we visited which was not scenic especially where we docked. Since I knew very little about Albania I was hoping to get a well planned itinerary from our guide. We went to Kruje which was an interesting medieval city. There, we visited an historical museum. We also visited a bazaar. Then, we had a terrible lunch. The countryside we saw was not that pretty and our guide Marjen was quiet so the touring was not as interesting as our other stops. After Kruja we went back to Durres to see some Roman ruins and a Venetian tower. This did not take too long to view. We ended the tour early, because there did not seem to be much to see or do. I would suggest that our guide should revise the tour to see more sights in the future. Day 7- Kotor, Montenegro. We used a company called M Tours which was highly rated on Trip Advisor. We had met another couple on the cruise who joined us so that Aleksander our tour guide led 6 of us through the enchanting countryside of Montenegro. He had an encyclopedic knowledge of Montenegro history and culture. It was a full day of touring-we went to Budva, then drove to Cetinje, and then went to Njegusi village for lunch at an old, local and a tour of their smokehouse. All of these places had both religious and historical significance. I never realized what a beautiful country Montenegro is, and it certainly is a country I would love to see again. I would highly recommend using M Tours. Day 8-Split Croatia. We used Viator and were lucky because only the four of us signed up for the tour so we had a private tour. We were very happy to have Sandra as our tour guide. She was vivacious and loved showing us Trogir, a medieval city. After Trogir, Sandra led us on a walking tour of Split where we marveled at the ancient Roman Palace. Sandra made the day enjoyable and I would recommend her company Croatian Trails. Day 9 and 10-Venice. We decided to do Venice on our own. In the morning we walked the whole city until we reached St. Marks Square. We then took a water taxi to Murano to do shopping. We really enjoyed Murano since it was much less crowded and the shops had beautiful glass items perfect for gifts. We also found a terrific place for lunch called Cicchetteria Pizzeria with a large courtyard where we had a delicious pizza and prosecco. Afterwards, we returned to Venice to take a 45 minute gondola ride. If you do not mind sharing, the cost is reasonable since you are paying for the ride which seats up to six. Although touristy, we enjoyed it. All in all it was a great trip with many memories. One final note, we had arranged our transfers prior to the trip and they worked out and were much more reasonable than cruise rates. I recommend both venutoinside.com(Venice Port to airport) and civitavecchiatoroma@gmail.com(Rome airport to Port). Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We wanted to see Cuba before it changed. The June time frame fit in with our schedule, but we didnʻt realize how hot and humid it would be. Going to Cuba is a challenge: things go wrong all the time, such as pollution preventing us ... Read More
We wanted to see Cuba before it changed. The June time frame fit in with our schedule, but we didnʻt realize how hot and humid it would be. Going to Cuba is a challenge: things go wrong all the time, such as pollution preventing us getting into Cienfuegos and power failure in the cruise terminal in Havana. We were also warned continuously of drinking only safe bottled drinks with NO ice. And the on board staff were very concerned about making sure we did not go against any of the new rules for Americans visiting Cuba. This went in their favor since they therefore discouraged anyone from doing anything other than ship shore tours. With two days in Havana, people, by the second day, realised that no-one was actually watching us, and, contrary to public opinion, the US $ was accepted by many people and places. Havana was an interesting place to visit and worth the effort. Two days in Santiago de Cuba was not. Despite being the second largest city, there were few redeeming features. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Our first cruises were on Riviera and Marina, both commencing in Barcelona. We chose this cruise to see Rio and escape the cold Canadian winter. Wasn't Sure whether the smaller Sirena would be as nice as Riviera or Marina, but I ... Read More
Our first cruises were on Riviera and Marina, both commencing in Barcelona. We chose this cruise to see Rio and escape the cold Canadian winter. Wasn't Sure whether the smaller Sirena would be as nice as Riviera or Marina, but I liked it even better. Beautiful European decor and all the same function rooms including a library to die for! The balcony stateroom was slightly smaller than Riviera and the bathroom has shower only but this was OK as far as we were concerned. First few ports...Rio Grande de Sul and Porto Belo were unimpressive but sailing in to Rio past Sugar Loaf at 5 am was a thrill of a lifetime. Food was wonderful, entertainment entertaining, shore excursions overpriced and not well co-ordinated by Oceania with local tour providers. That is my one criticism. That, and they should engage more qualified onboard lecturers in my view. but I cannot imagine cruise lines more luxurious than Oceania, certainly not better cuisine. The food and the libraries on Oceania will keep me coming back. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We wanted to see Cuba, the Panama Canal and Machu Picchu and this cruise had all three. It was the first time we traveled with dietary restrictions (my wife was diagnosed as Celiac). Overall the ship did a good job of providing gluten ... Read More
We wanted to see Cuba, the Panama Canal and Machu Picchu and this cruise had all three. It was the first time we traveled with dietary restrictions (my wife was diagnosed as Celiac). Overall the ship did a good job of providing gluten free food options, but it could have been better. Every single meal we had to ask the chef to point out what she could eat instead of simply putting a "GF" label on the cards describing each dish. She only was contaminated once when given inaccurate information. For the most part the servers and food preparers at the stations need additional training in preparing gluten free meals. They could also do a better job of having gluten free choices rather an a cookie at the tea or one dessert (if you were lucky) Tired of hearing fruit plate, salad and dry chicken. Now on to excursions. Oceana is gouging it's passengers with expensive, and just average tours. Don't get me wrong, some of them were great, but an equal number were under performers. We recommend you do your own research and book off the ship for half the price. We went from 90% cruise excursions to half this time and will go lower down the road. Best excursion - Machu Picchu. Drinks prices in an age where your completion offers free drinks is another gouge. (Bring some on board - they allow it) Best meal on board - red ginger. Worst meal on board - the dining room (got servered raw lobster one time and never went back) Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We are experienced cruisers with more than 50 cruises. This was our second cruise with Oceania. The first one was, 10 years ago. This review is about a 35 days cruise on the Oceania Sirena from San Diego to Rio de Janeiro including the ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers with more than 50 cruises. This was our second cruise with Oceania. The first one was, 10 years ago. This review is about a 35 days cruise on the Oceania Sirena from San Diego to Rio de Janeiro including the Amazon River. During our trip, I have also had a live thread, which can be seen on the Oceania Forum. We had a wonderful cruise on board Oceania Sirena. The cruise came to an end and we are back home now. About the ship The ship was familiar from the beginning, because we have cruised before many times with Azamara, which has the same type of ships. Standard Cabins are small and bathrooms are tiny. The ship and cabins are well maintained and kept in a pristine condition. An area of improvement could be to add or renew the filter for the type of smoke that comes out of the ship, when in movement. That smoke was for us, many times, annoying when sitting at the Terrace outside for lunch. It has a peculiar smell. Nevertheless our overall impression of the ship is very positive. About the itinerary We have chosen this cruise because we were interested in cruising the Amazon river. As a matter of fact if Oceania would not have offered that possibility, we would have not taken this cruise. The ship started in San Diego, which for us, international guests, is more complicated than Los Angeles or Miami. The ports of call in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean were as good as any port in those areas. Our favorites were Tobago and Curaçao. I would have preferred to stay overnight in one of those ports and maybe skip Bridgetown. The crossing of the Panama Canal as usual spectacular. An interesting port, because of the historical implications was Devils Island. The cruising of the Amazon river did not disappoint us. On the contrary, we had lowered our expectations, thinking that cruising there with a large ship was not going to be that good. We were surprised by the diversity of the ports and we have enjoyed most of them. I did not like Santarem very much because I found it very loud, with loudspeakers everywhere. We have enjoyed Manaus, Parintins and Alter do Chao. The other Brazilian ports outside the Amazon, were all known to us: Fortaleza, Recife, Salvador Bahia and Rio. We like Salvador Bahia the most and we were surprised by a different aspect from Recife. Rio de Janeiro was our disembarking port and having been there many times we did not stay. Overall, we are satisfied with the itinerary. About the entertainment on board There were plenty of activities on board: bridge, golf putting, knitting, pilates, etc. We have appreciated very much the enrichment lectures, specially from Dr. Don Klein. We have learned a lot through those lectures. The production shows on small ships like Oceania Sirena are not particularly inviting. I do appreciate the efforts of the young entertainers but somehow, those shows are not to our taste. Maybe because we do not know the music being played. We have liked single performances like the one from Jamie Stewart: music from Frank Sinatra and friends. Our favorite entertainers were the Panache string quartet and the Band. We have tried not to miss their performances. About the food and wine Yes, we do think Oceania has the best dining experience in comparison to other ocean cruise lines. We found the house select package a good choice as part of the Olife offer. Now, this was a long cruise of 35 days, so there were many repetitions of food. Since Oceania offers many restaurants we have tried to avoid getting bored by changing venues as much as we could. Our favorite restaurant is the Red Ginger. The wines included in the house select package, were all quite good imho. Now, some were better than others and unfortunately those better wines would disappear quite soon. It was confusing because the lists of available wines were not updated. I imagine that it is a matter of logistics. This is an area of improvement since it has caused many complaints not only during this cruise but we remember having seen it also before our cruise in discussions of Oceania cruises at the Cruise Critics Forum. Despite of this, we are very satisfied with the quality of food and wine during our cruise. About the shore excursions I guess the main complaint about the shore excursions with Oceania are the prices and that the excursion’s team is not really interested in providing port information unless you have booked an excursion with them. We have booked only two ship excursions and they were fine. Since we have done many things on our own in the ports, we could see that prices of excursions when bought locally were half the price. I am not sure who is getting the overheads for those inflated prices for excursions. Anyhow, we consider this a weakness. About the shops and the services at the Spa Similar to the shore excursions, the prices at the Spa are very expensive even comparing to other ocean cruise lines. So we did not use those services. The shops unfortunately, did not have in our opinion, a good selection of products. We were lucky that we did not choose the option of non refundable on board credit as part of the Olife offer. We would have been in trouble spending it. About the officers, the crew and service on board We are very satisfied with the excellent service on board the Sirena. The restaurant managers, sommeliers, waiters and cabin attendants were efficient and friendly. We did not experience any situation, in which who could have had a reason to complain. The Manager, Rafaelle Cinque, the Cruise Director and the Concierge were always available and taking corrective action in case of need. We are happy to have cruise with such high qualified and friendly officers and we hope to meet them again. A BIG thanks to all of them. They have made us feel at home and have treated us, as if we were very important persons. Our overall assessment of our cruise with the Oceania Sirena is that it was a very good cruise. We would certainly now actively look for Oceania offers when we are looking for future cruises. Our thanks go also to the cruise critic members, who have followed my live thread. You have encouraged me with your interest and comments to share our experiences with you. It was not always easy, since I was some days lazy, but you an me, made it together. Have happy cruises! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We just returned from a 35 day cruise on Oceania's newest ship - Sirena. This is actually one of the old "R" ships which Oceania has 3 of already. Sirena is now the 4th "R" ship. When Oceania took over this ship ... Read More
We just returned from a 35 day cruise on Oceania's newest ship - Sirena. This is actually one of the old "R" ships which Oceania has 3 of already. Sirena is now the 4th "R" ship. When Oceania took over this ship from Princess, it was in deplorable shape and underwent a massive renovation. Horizons was redone completely opening up the room making it more functional. Princess had added men's and woman's bathrooms which is necessary as the old "R" ships don't have a bathroom on the 10th floor and one has to walk down one flight. The room now is much nicer. I hope they will add bathrooms to the other smaller "R" ships. The Penthouse cabins have been redone. The bathroom which had a small shower and tub, has been upgraded. They took out the tub and shower and made a much larger shower, which is great. We unfortunately were in one of the veranda cabins which doesn't appear to have been updated. But we visited a penthouse and the occupants really enjoyed the changes. Restaurants: The "R" ships have 2 nice restaurants aft on 10 and one Main Dining room on deck 5. Then there is the Terrace café on deck 9 which is a self serve lunch and dinner facility. The change that Oceania made was in the 2 restaurants on deck 10. Oceania's other "R" ships have the Polo Grill and Toscana on 10. Oceania turned these 2 restaurants into one for one of the restaurants on deck10 combining both menus. So we still get our lobster, and steaks, plus some of the great Italian dishes Oceania is famous for. This restaurant is called The Tuscan Grill. To be noted is that not all of the menu items that were in Polo and Toscana are offered. The trade off is the other restaurant on 10 was turned into Oceania's famous "Red Ginger" (which is only on their larger ships) and is absolutely beautiful. RG doesn't exit on the other R ships that Oceania owns. I really like this change because I enjoy RG. Then Oceania added Jacques for lunch in the MDR. This has been fabulous! Of course, now we're fighting the extra pounds we gained with all this wonderful food. The other services on Sirena are the same as all of Oceania's ships' services. The officers and staff are always wonderful. Ports of Call: It's important to research this before you book a cruise. If you enjoy luxury ports where the towns visited are clean and beautiful, don't book a cruise that goes to the Amazon. But if you want to learn about the primitive life along the Amazon and the history of this part of the world, then you will enjoy this cruise. Oceania always comes up with different and interesting ports to visit. Entertainment: I usually enjoy the shows that are put on by the hired entertainers but this cruise we only had 5 such shows for 35 days. The CD, Dottie who is fabulous, asked the 2 top entertainers to come up with a show on their own. This was the best show they played. The other entertainment is usually one person playing an instrument. While these people are usually good, it makes for a boring show in my opinion. I think for longer cruises, some of the main production shows should be repeated. Since they are always held at 9:30 sometimes people are not finished dinner yet, or are too tired to attend. This would give options. This cruise took place over the holidays, and it was the first time we've ever been away for the holidays. The ship was beautifully decorated and we enjoyed the festivities that Oceania created. We were also given a nice gift from Oceania. In close, I understand that Oceania put a lot of money into renovations of Sirena, but it seems to be a work in progress with a lot to still be done. I enjoyed the different feel of Sirena. I also enjoy cruising on their larger ships. Sirena adds a variety to the fleet with the changes Oceania has made. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
We chose this cruise rather last minute when we had to abandon plans for a land tour due to a number of reasons. We are so glad we did. This cruise embarked 60 miles from our home making it easy to get to with no prior arrangements. ... Read More
We chose this cruise rather last minute when we had to abandon plans for a land tour due to a number of reasons. We are so glad we did. This cruise embarked 60 miles from our home making it easy to get to with no prior arrangements. And, the itinerary included a couple of destinations that were high on our TO See list. This ship isn't really equipped for or caters to children. So I would not think it would be a good choice for families. The string quartet was excellent and we enjoyed their music before dinner every evening and at afternoon tea when we added that to our busy schedule. The staff on board was attentive, friendly and very approachable. Food quality, selection, preparation and presentation in the Terrance Buffet, Main Dining Room, and in the specialty dining Red Ginger and Toscan Steak House is exceptional and better than on any ship on which we have cruised. The ports were all interesting and most of.our excursions were made through folks on Cruise Critic. The ship tours were disappointing, but we had only a couple of them. They were rushed, had too many people and were held up by folks who were mobility impaired resulting in considerable loss of valuable siteseeing time at the various stops. Also, many of the guests on the ship tours chat endlessly so that it is hard to hear the commentary of the local guides. We avoid ship tours for those reasons. We will sail again on the Sirena or other Oceania ships and look forward to doing so. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
The itinerary. We have traveled a lot & truly enjoy venturing to different countries. We like to engage with the locals wherever we visit to find out what the heartbeat of the community is & what makes it tick, On this ... Read More
The itinerary. We have traveled a lot & truly enjoy venturing to different countries. We like to engage with the locals wherever we visit to find out what the heartbeat of the community is & what makes it tick, On this particular trip we met people who were aghast at some of the ports & extremely poor communities we visited. We found the mindset of these people had expectations that it was just like home & could not believe that Oceania would take them to such places. The reason to travel is to broaden ones horizons & see how the rest of the world lives & copes with their lot in life. Everyone has a story & it is so important to listen??? The naysayers complaints were 1st. world country & I truly hope that when they returned to their homes that they would take a few minutes to reflect on the hardships of others. The Sirena crew were wonderful---they would do anything to please their guests & from the captain right down to a deck hand they fostered a wonderful ambience that felt like one big family. My hat is of to each & everyone who were part of our wonderful journey---thank you from the bottom of our hearts & we look forward to joining you again in the near future. The only thing that we would fault Oceania on were our flights. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We choose this cruise because of the itinerary and we wanted to experience a smaller ship. We are glad we did the cruise, however, smaller ships are “not our cup of tea.” We did not think there was much to do and will stick to ... Read More
We choose this cruise because of the itinerary and we wanted to experience a smaller ship. We are glad we did the cruise, however, smaller ships are “not our cup of tea.” We did not think there was much to do and will stick to Oceania and Regent’s larger ships. Here are out thoughts and opinions: Air Arrangements – GRADE F. We have never had such poor air arrangements. Oceania did not even book partner airlines for domestic and international travel. This meant 1) we could only check one bag each (we planned on checking our carry on too), 2) could only get boarding passes for domestic portion of air arrangements, 3) we had to take a bus from one part of terminal to another, 4) leave security and take a train from one terminal to another, 5) get new boarding passes for international flight and check two more bags, 6) our seats were next to bathrooms so paid extra to move forward away from bathrooms. On the way home, Oceania booked us a 10:30 p.m. flight even though we had to leave the ship at 9:00 a.m. They offered no tours with drop off at airport as most cruise lines we have taken do. On board ship they offered no help for the return flight home and suggested we book a hotel room for the day! Cabin – grade A. We were in a penthouse and the room was well appointed and quiet. However, the bathroom might be the smallest we have ever had. Food – GRADE B+ to A-. Steaks, fish and sometimes lobster tended to be under-cooked for our taste. Buffet food was not as good as the Mariner or Riviera, but better than other cruise lines. Offering lobster and steaks each evening in the buffet was very enjoyable. The main dining room offered good food, good service and for the most part a notch above other cruise lines. There are two specialty restaurants and both were excellent with friendly and helpful hosts. Staff- GRADE A. All staff and crew members were very friendly. This is a definite plus for the ship and Oceania. Oceania Shore Excursions – GRADE B. While the guides for the most part were good, there tended to be an over emphasis on taking people to shop for jewelry, glass, and other types of shops. While we did appreciate stops at local markets, many places had booths/stalls each selling basically the same thing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
We had a wonderful time and met a lot of really nice people. I would highly recommend this cruise. The only thing is didn't like is I felt they needed more activities on days at sea. The activities were all revenue based. The ... Read More
We had a wonderful time and met a lot of really nice people. I would highly recommend this cruise. The only thing is didn't like is I felt they needed more activities on days at sea. The activities were all revenue based. The food was delicous. The specialty restaurants were especially good. The Miso Sea Bass is absolutely fabulous. There were so many good choices it was hard to decide. We liked the ports. But some of the ports were far from the activities. It took up to 2 hours to get to see the important sights. The drivers in these countries are awful so we are glad we had drivers. The staff was wonderful aboard. Everyone went out of their way to be friendly and nice. The ship was decorated for the holidays. They did a lovely Chanukah service every night for those who wanted to particiate. The entertainers were very nice to everyone too. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
We are seasoned luxury cruisers, based in Switzerland, and booked SIRENA because of the itiniary from Buenos Aires to Lima on the 11th of November 2017. Comparisions are with a view to other luxury ships, specifically to SEABOURN. The ... Read More
We are seasoned luxury cruisers, based in Switzerland, and booked SIRENA because of the itiniary from Buenos Aires to Lima on the 11th of November 2017. Comparisions are with a view to other luxury ships, specifically to SEABOURN. The much advertised food on SIRENA is a fact in the dining room and speciality restaurants, somewhat less so on the buffet, but still good. The meals are well selected and offer a good choice every day. It is somewhat difficult to get a reservation at the two speciality restaurant though, because unless one has booked before the cruise even starts, it becomes very hard. The ship itself is like an elegant older lady, which means that staterooms are somewhat smaller than usual, but are always well cleaned. The public areas are certainly nice in the "grand old style", but don't expect modern or the "glass look" seen on many newer ships. The passengers are older, about 50+ to about 75, which could also be due to the 21-day trip outside a holiday period. The major downside are the excursions. Nearly all are vastly overpriced, especially compared to SEABOURN, and totally unflexible. For instance our friends booked on a "standby" tour, which looked unlike it would go, so they booked another tour as back-up. The ship forced payment on the stand-by, although itslef it had the option to cancel for any reason. We booked all private tours of either 2 or 6 pax and prices were always less than half of the ships tours with far superior quality. Satisfaction is absolutely NOT guaranteed and OCEANIA will always refuse to adjust. This is in stark contrast to SEABOURN, where 5 pax out of 15 of our bus tour, was unhappy with the ship tour in Malta, and the ship refunded 100% of the tour, even for passengers like us, who did not complain. Nothing like such a servive will ever happen on OCEANIA. We recommend taking the shipboard credit and not the "free excursions" because the interesting ones all come with a surcharge that is typically more than a private tour, Entertainment is good for a ship of that size, and the staff everywhere are very friendly and competent. Read Less
Sirena Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.8
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 3.5 3.3
Public Rooms 5.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 1.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.1
Enrichment 2.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.5

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