Sail Date: March 2019
We went on the Oceania Riviera because we wanted top of the line service, a smallish ship, and to see a different part of the Caribbean. As soon as we went to the buffet after embarkation, I knew we were in for a cruise with great ... Read More
We went on the Oceania Riviera because we wanted top of the line service, a smallish ship, and to see a different part of the Caribbean. As soon as we went to the buffet after embarkation, I knew we were in for a cruise with great service. At no time do your hands touch the buffet utensils. (I had read that this is the number one place on a cruise ship to "catch something") Everything is served to you. We had a penthouse suite which was spacious. This came with some perks including a butler, but I'm not sure what he did. But we allowed to use a seculded pool area located near the spa. There was also an executive lounge penthouse suite people can use. The food on the Riviera was excellent as well as the four speciality restaurants and afternoon tea. We had read that the shows on the Riviera weren't that good but wasn't our experience. It was varied and very entertaining. My husband took classes with the culiniary school and he loved them. There is also an artist and photograher who taught their skills. The decorating of this ship is extraordinary. IMPORTANT - the Riviera had a convenient and free laundry on every floor. So what were the drawbacks - Age - we are in our late 50's and we definately younger that most of the other cruises. Our first night's dinner companions fell asleep at the table. The good news is that there are no children on this cruise. Disembarkation - took a long long long time. Excursions - the western Caribbean offered a small variety of excursions. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
The ship was beautiful and well maintained. The pool deck furniture was a little tired, particularly in the spa area, but that's a nit pick. Otherwise, the Riviera is a beautiful ship! The crew, almost to a person, was ... Read More
The ship was beautiful and well maintained. The pool deck furniture was a little tired, particularly in the spa area, but that's a nit pick. Otherwise, the Riviera is a beautiful ship! The crew, almost to a person, was friendly, outgoing, and helpful. This cruise, for us, was for relaxation and to get away from the cold weather up north. We did not participate in any of the ships excursions so we can't evaluate them. Due to "strong winds" we had to skip the stop in Belize. So instead , we spent the day cruising around the Gulf of Mexico. The on-board entertainment, particularly the evening shows in the theater ("lounge"), was as expected. Not to the same level or quality that we have enjoyed on Celebrity or Princess but not bad. The comedians and magicians were very good. It was nice to be on this size ship. No problem getting a deck chair, no waiting in line to embark or dis-embark, no problem finding a table in the "buffet". But, "buffet" probably isn't the best way to describe this venue. Yes, you do go to various counters to pick what you would like to eat but the staff plates it for you, no 500 hands on each serving utensil. At the grill you can order rib-eye, lobster tail, LARGE shrimp, lamb chops, etc. What surprised me was the standard question, "how many lobster would you like?". In any case, the food was excellent. Not perfect, but I don't know how Oceania could have catered to the varied tastes of 1250 passengers in a better way. All the specialty restaurants, particularly the Polo Grill and Toscano, were excellent. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Finally got to take another cruise from my bucket list. Sailed on Riviera and found the staff very enjoyable. Everyone were more than happy to help in anyway to make my stay with them an enjoyable one. I had dinner at Red Ginger (get ... Read More
Finally got to take another cruise from my bucket list. Sailed on Riviera and found the staff very enjoyable. Everyone were more than happy to help in anyway to make my stay with them an enjoyable one. I had dinner at Red Ginger (get the Sea Bass), Polo Grill, Toscana and the Main Dining room. All the meals were delicious and I found the wait staff very friendly. I can’t wait for my next cruise. Being a solo traveller, I decided to sign up for some of the ships tours. The kayaking experience was very interesting with our tour guide filling us in on the sea life around Great Stirrup Cay. I think the group thoroughly enjoyed his talk. Another day found me on a trolley train in St.Lucia. It was a great ride and our conductor was a very funny man. We got to see through the town of Castries, as well as a ride to a lovely beach, it was a fun day for everyone. We were never far from areas to shop at any of the islands that we visited. I did overdue it a little bit at the jewelry table on the ship, but that’s what vacations are all about. Touring by day, shopping by night! The catamaran sail at Sr. Bart’s was a wonderful way to spend time there. While many found the shopping very expensive, I found the sailing and swimming in the cove to be a wonderful way to spend the day. I would highly recommend any of these tours. Disembarkation was smooth and timely. A shout out as well to Judy for all her hard work. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
This is our 12th cruise on Oceania. We have been on Rivera a total of 3 times and have just disembarked the ship on March 6. The food, service, and and attention to detail were excellent! I noticed a slight "wear and tear" ... Read More
This is our 12th cruise on Oceania. We have been on Rivera a total of 3 times and have just disembarked the ship on March 6. The food, service, and and attention to detail were excellent! I noticed a slight "wear and tear" on the ship and was informed that the ship will receive an update this April. We had been on Riviera when it was a new ship so I was able to notice any changes. We had a Penthouse 3 cabin which was huge with plenty of storage. There was a separate shower and bathtub, two vanities,and also a huge walk in closet. The room stewardess and butler were also excellent. The cabin was kept spotless and they were very accommodating. Oceania asks for a Mid-cruise evaluation. They really pay attention to your comments. If there is a negative comment, the appropriate department follows up concerning your comment and tries to make you happy. The entire staff is friendly and professional. We love Oceania and now only cruise with this company. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We like the atmosphere on Oceania cruises. The Riviera was our second Oceania cruise this year. We were in the Caribbean and liked having a larger ship on this itinerary. We do prefer the smaller ships for touring itineraries. ... Read More
We like the atmosphere on Oceania cruises. The Riviera was our second Oceania cruise this year. We were in the Caribbean and liked having a larger ship on this itinerary. We do prefer the smaller ships for touring itineraries. We had a Concierge Cabin. Since it is basically the same size as a balcony, it probably isn’t worth the difference in price. The only amenity that was worth it was the opportunity to book specialty restaurants further in advance. I know that the Riviera is being renovated soon and I could see where it needs it. The specialty restaurants are phenomenal on this ship. For those who have not done this line before, they probably have the most comfortable pool chairs of any line. If you like a quiet upscale atmosphere, you won’t be disappointed. The only turn off to me was that they pushed bingo, which brought the line down a notch in my opinion. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
With the mainstream ships getting bigger and bigger, we decided to think small and are very happy we did! The Riviera's the perfect size, food is exceptional, service is outstanding. And we like what it doesn't have - no ... Read More
With the mainstream ships getting bigger and bigger, we decided to think small and are very happy we did! The Riviera's the perfect size, food is exceptional, service is outstanding. And we like what it doesn't have - no screaming kids, hairy-man contests, climbing walls and so on. The ship's decor is low-key, elegant rather than glitzy with some very unusual works of art. Come to think of it, the passengers are also low-key and elegant, rather than glitzy, and also very friendly. Riviera allows you to bring on @ 6 bottles of wine when you embark.(though not for the dining room unless you pay a corkage fee). Their own wine list is pretty pricey but all non-alcoholic drinks are included. I prefer low-sodium dishes when cruising and they are available by request. They were excellent. My husband, on the other hand, felt a few dishes on the regular menu were too salty. Somewhat disappointed in our cabin (see below) and the limited choice of shore excursions. (we booked some on our own) Entertainment was good and Dottie, the cruise director, was great fun All in all, a very pleasant experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our tenth cruise and second with Oceania. We were on the Riviera last year and had a wonderful time. Much to our delight this cruise was even better than the previous one. For us, as good as the ship itself was and all it had to ... Read More
This was our tenth cruise and second with Oceania. We were on the Riviera last year and had a wonderful time. Much to our delight this cruise was even better than the previous one. For us, as good as the ship itself was and all it had to offer, the best part of the cruise was the people. We met so many amazing people on this cruise and had a delightful time with them from the minute we boarded to the moment we left. We’ve been on the big ships in the past, but we much prefer the size of the Riviera. We find it's a little more intimate, with a sense of community when the ship is not a floating mega-city! Also, and I don’t mean to sound like a stuffy snob, but the type of people that cruise with Oceania appeal much more to our age and tastes than some of the other cruise lines. As so many others have noted, the food is outstanding from the main dining room to the specialty restaurants to the Terrace Café buffet. The buffet selection was as good as any of the other restaurants. Beyond the buffet's amazing selection, what also appealed to us about the buffet was that we don’t touch the food – it is served to us and as a result it is so much healthier. Speaking of healthy, we loved the fact that every morning we could get fresh veggie juice just like we have at home. In all the restaurants there were all sorts of healthy eating alternatives. The room was cozy but large enough. The storage space was adequate. Of course, we loved the balcony where we spent a lot of time enjoying our books and having a drink and taking in the gorgeous views. Even the bathroom was great. It was roomy and we loved having a tub. As for the entertainment, we’re not big on the song and dance shows, but we do love comedy, and on this cruise standup comedian Tom Drake was featured. He did two hysterically funny shows as well as a workshop on comedy. We were very happy with the ports we went to this year. The ports were Aruba, Bonaire, Grenada, Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and St. Barts. The stays in the ports for the most part were all day so we never felt rushed. Most of the excursions we chose were good – some better than others. St. Kitts was probably our favourite. We loved the beach and the drive there was breathtaking at times. Beach day at Aruba was great. We visited a lovely beach with lots of shade which we appreciated, and there was very good snorkelling there. We not impressed with the Spice Beach club excursion on Bonaire. It wasn’t much of a beach, but the snorkelling was good. There was only one port we didn’t visit, St. Barts, because we would have had to tender there. We don’t like the tenders that Oceania use. They use their lifeboats, and they are just too rocky. We had a bad experience on one last year and decided to avoid it this year. We found more than enough to do on board – trivia, miniature golf, shuffleboard, cooking lessons, (okay we’re 65, what do you expect!!) The staff was top notch. Everyone from our cabin attendants to the severs in the restaurants to everyone else on board were helpful, courteous and friendly. I should also point out that on this cruise we had the best cruise director ever. Her name was Dottie and she was by far the best Cruise Director we have come across in our ten cruises. She connected with the guests so perfectly. She was always bubbly, funny and just downright nice. Embarkation and debarkation was unbelievably smooth and quick. We hope to go on another Oceania cruise next year. We understand that the Riviera is going to be getting a little refurbishing. We did see some people complaining in previous reviews that the ship looked a little worn. We thought the ship was totally charming. We had no complaints about the appearance or performance of the ship. Hopefully we'll see what is new next year. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Caribbean snorkeling cruise. Great space in the penthouse suite. Chose for the itinerary but wish they stayed longer in Bonaire. Did not like that we had to wear a life preserver is when taking the cruises excursion to snorkel. Food was ... Read More
Caribbean snorkeling cruise. Great space in the penthouse suite. Chose for the itinerary but wish they stayed longer in Bonaire. Did not like that we had to wear a life preserver is when taking the cruises excursion to snorkel. Food was quite good but wish there was more variety as 12 days I would’ve liked to seen different choices. Overall Oceania did a great job with organization embarkation disembarkation and meeting my requests. Pre-ordered particular juices ahead of time and we did indeed get them. Privee was very good. It was our third time booking Privee and it’s a fun evening. Jaques is way too creamy and rich. How could somebody possibly ruin escargot? By smothering cheese all over it. The easiest muster we ever did...thanks for that, luggage arrived by the time we entered suite... Crew friendly and helpful. Bingo run well until too many people ....had to stand in line for 30 min to purchase cards...unacceptable...Should have had several stations or areas to purchase cards to avoid long lines. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this one over one that we had booked on the MSC Seaside because it included a stop in Cuba and one other country that we had not been to before in the Western Caribbean. We (my wife and I) also had her two brothers along for a ... Read More
We chose this one over one that we had booked on the MSC Seaside because it included a stop in Cuba and one other country that we had not been to before in the Western Caribbean. We (my wife and I) also had her two brothers along for a much needed vacation and we had wanted to see if Oceania cruises would live up to all the hype especially their cuisine. The food was very good, among the best we have had on cruises. Even though the choices on the buffet were limited what they had tasted very good and the sushi for dinner was the best that I had on any cruise. For breakfast I had to see how their lox (smoked salmon) stacked up against the best that I had on a cruise (Royal Caribbean 2006) and they came in a credible second to that one. Specialty restaurants didn't disappoint although they weren't the best we have eaten at they were good. At least the lobster I had on Oceania was better than that on board a recent Regent cruise. Our excursions were all enjoyable and nicely different from the typical cruise line fare. There were a couple of ports that Oceania didn't offer much if any that were exciting or even remotely interesting so we opted to get others from outside companies. The one we got for Cozumel, the Mayan Kun Che Park, was awesome and one that I would recommend to anyone who wasn't interested in visiting the ruins. This was the first time in several cruises that we didn't get a suite and I felt the squeeze in all aspects. We had a veranda room w/concierge and walk around room was minimal - the two of us couldn't go past the bed at the same time. Speaking of the bed, it was a queen bed, had no space under it to store our large suitcases. It has been decades since we shared one that small. The bathroom was large though and that could have had the bathtub taken out to add another 30 sq.feet to the room itself. As it was the only use the tub got was as storage for our suitcases. The staff was uniformly friendly, courteous and bent over backwards to accommodate our every need except for one exception - our concierge. First of all he never bothered to introduce himself when we arrived and a day or two into our cruise I noticed that one of our excursions was different than what we had wanted so I gave him a call and asked him if he would try to get it changed - a normal enough task for a concierge. His response: "You will have to go to Destination Services and ask them yourself." We went on a NCL cruise and had a concierge then who was outstanding. If I had asked him the same thing he would have wanted to know the numbers of both excursions and then would have gotten back to me within two hours with an answer. We never bothered this so called concierge again since it was obvious to us that he didn't want to do his job. I have to say this was the easiest disembarkation that we ever had. Even though we were given a time to get off the ship once we got down to the gangway level we were told that we could just leave - no muss, no fuss, no waiting for our tag color and number to be called. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy. All in all, we enjoyed the cruise and if Oceania has another itinerary that we like will consider them again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
This was my 6 th cruise on Oceania, unfortunately is see the quality being eroded from past trips. Menus were repeated on a 10 day cruise, never had that before. Entertainment never a strong point with this line, generally that’s ok ... Read More
This was my 6 th cruise on Oceania, unfortunately is see the quality being eroded from past trips. Menus were repeated on a 10 day cruise, never had that before. Entertainment never a strong point with this line, generally that’s ok but this year was a repeat of the shows I saw last year. Quality of food was good, however it is never hot enough and I constantly had to request, send back etc dishes in all venues. Staff are still attentive but sometimes at breakfast waiting for coffee became almos am adventure. Smiles were a bit scarce too. Our trip to Havana less than great as we were not able to leave for our tour until after 11.00 due to the number of passengers booked on tours, something of a miscalculation on Destination Services part. Will be looking for another line next cruise to see if they are better. Sorry Oceania, time to oullup your socks and stop cutting corners! Read Less
Riviera Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 0.0
Dining 5.0 0.0
Entertainment 3.5 0.0
Public Rooms 4.5 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 2.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.5 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 4.5 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0

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