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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Chosen for Easter Island port, but it was not meant to be. Surf conditions prevented us from going ashore. Whole ship disappointed. Anyone considering a similar cruise, recommend picking one with an overnight to double your chances of ... Read More
Chosen for Easter Island port, but it was not meant to be. Surf conditions prevented us from going ashore. Whole ship disappointed. Anyone considering a similar cruise, recommend picking one with an overnight to double your chances of getting on the island. Evening entertainment was not very good. With a few exceptions, evenings were pretty boring. Very few ballroom dancing opportunities, but when the band did play, they did a very good job. Take advantage of the pre-dinner happy hour, BoGo. The only downside is both drinks must be the same. The string quartet was excellent, the production cast, not so good. Enrichment lecturers were outstanding. Not sure I would choose Oceania for an itinerary with so many sea days again (we had 10). They did not have the staff nor a varied selection of activities to keep everyone occupied, but public areas were great if all you want to do is chill. New policies: complimentary use of self-service laundries and one free wifi connection per stateroom -- OLife choice not needed to get this amenity anymore. 2 great pluses! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
The occasion was our 20th wedding anniversary, and we wanted to have a luxurious cabin on a great ship with no hassles. We are older and can't be bothered. We did a lot of research, planned and saved for a couple years so we could do ... Read More
The occasion was our 20th wedding anniversary, and we wanted to have a luxurious cabin on a great ship with no hassles. We are older and can't be bothered. We did a lot of research, planned and saved for a couple years so we could do everything first class, and this cruise, and this ship, really hit the mark. Pre-cruise Papeete 3 days/4 nights Because our cruise would take us only to 3 other Tahitian ports, we wanted to spend our first few days on vacation in Tahiti in an overwater bungalow. We booked the Intercontinental Tahiti online at Expedia, which was a couple hundred dollars cheaper than booking direct with the hotel but very pricey. The overwater bungalow was fabulous, and the Intercontinental property was beautiful with an amazing lagoon swim-up bar ... We did a renewal of our vows on a little island in the lagoon that the wedding coordinator at the hotel arranged, and it was wonderful. Drawbacks of the hotel: Food and drinks are very expensive, and the snorkeling is not great. Although the ocean is warm and the water is clear, not many fish and no coral reef to speak of. I did a scuba dive with TopDive at the hotel and did see a LOT of sharks, so that was fun. If we did this again, though, I would take the ferry to Moorea to spend a few days. It looks like a quieter, prettier island than Papeete, although our room, and our view from the balcony across the water to Moorea, and our time at the Intercontinental were all delightful. Day One Embarkation My husband always wants to be everywhere early, so we arrived to the dock a half-hour before we could board, even with our 11 a.m. boarding time (suite people get to board early! La!). It was very easy to leave our bags and go aboard to the lounge where they had set out danish and coffee and tea and water for the many people who had already arrived and were waiting to board. Then we were surprised when they announced they were prepared to check people in and as we were there, they would begin -- and even more surprised to discover our room was already ready for us. We were in our room 15 minutes before we were supposed to even be able to check in. Do not be afraid of some kind of cattle call or long lines to board and get checked in; Oceania seems to have this well in hand. The ship is beautifully appointed! I loved the artwork everywhere which seemed whimsical and classical all at once. We chose a suite because we didn’t want any hassles ever. Only the Marina and its sister ship the Riviera have the particular suite we chose, the Oceania suite. We liked the looks of it when we saw the photos and layout on the website, and it had a champagne bubble tub on the balcony. Our cruise had a lot of days at sea, so I thought luxuriating in that tub would be perfect. As it happened, we stayed so busy, I only used it a few times! The amenities with a suite are lovely. There was a bottle of champagne on ice when we arrived, and we also were able to choose 6 bottles of spirits or wine for the rest of the cruise, which we never even finished them all. We also got 3 bags of complimentary laundry, canapes every afternoon, turn-down service with chocolates, and a butler who brought ice, kept the fridge stocked with soft drinks, brought newspapers in the morning and would make dining reservations, serve room service, and more. We had some friends over and he even brought a tray of snacks for them ... He was delightful. His name was Logesh, and he was from Madras, India. We loved him. The suite itself was amazing. I have cruised on Carnival, Princess, and Royal Caribbean, and never saw anything like this. The suite had a living room/dining room, including a nice sitting area where we put together a jigsaw puzzle. Again, I thought with the days at sea we would need something to do in the evenings, but as we came to the end of the cruise, I had to invite friends in to finish the puzzle with me. Which turned out to be great fun, actually. There was also a huge closet, a media room with TV and a huge selection of on-demand movies, a guest bathroom in the entry hall and a huge master bath with double vanity, separate shower and whirlpool tub. It was insane! When we cruised before, it was with children and grandma and economy was a priority, so we had to cram suitcases and kids everywhere … I could not believe the amount of space we had. We were seriously like gypsies in the palace in this place. Oceania seems to attract an older crowd; there were no children on board and very few young people. It’s also a smaller ship. It can take 1,250 passengers, and on our cruise, there were only 800 aboard, so there was never a crowd and never a wait for anything. And no blaring music or crazy contests or rowdy folks at the pool bar. Nothing at all for children or teenagers or wild young adults to get up to, but perfect for relaxing and enjoying the scenery and amenities. We took a knife skills class in the culinary center, which was excellent, and I had a spa day that was luscious on one of our days at sea. Plus we were pretty regular players of trivia and the beanbag toss, winning enough Big-O points to score 2 t-shirts, 2 hats, and a tote bag, I believe. Ship life was good for old folks! Day 2 Raiatea, French Polynesia All these French Polynesian islands are lush and lovely from what I saw! Bright sparkling blue water, gorgeous sandy beaches, and mountainous jungle-looking areas. Raiatea no exception. Here we docked, and this was good for my husband who is disabled and found it onerous getting on and off the tenders. We had booked a private tour with Excursion Bleu and Capt. Bruno. It was a whole day of snorkeling, a visit to a vanilla farm, a visit to a pearl farm, and lunch on the beach -- all by boat. The water was clear, we snorkeled with sharks, the beaches were beautiful, and the visit to the pearl farm was delightful. Learning how they get the beautiful Tahitian pearls was fascinating -- and of course my hubby doled out to get pearl pendants for me and his daughters who loved them! The lunch was fish and chicken with rice and breadfruit and plantains and coconut bread and all good things. Days 3-4 Bora-Bora French Polynesia Bora-Bora is amazing. The iconic view of those mountains from the sea ... It was stunning. Like you were sailing through a postcard. Our first day we had another snorkel adventure with BBQ and entertainment on the beach again. The company we booked with is Mahaoi Nui, and everyone said to do "Patrick's Tour." Patrick was booked up, so I decided on this snorkel tour with his same company and enjoyed it a lot. The dive guides played ukelele and sang as we cruised between the snorkel stops. Our first stop was in about 21 feet deep water, clear, warm, lovely to float in, and we were again snorkeling with sharks! It was amazing to see so many gorgeous black-tip reef sharks, so close at hand. Really enjoyed it! I think there were 3 snorkeling spots, total. At lunch there was suckling pig that had been cooking for hours in the oven in the ground ... It was like a luau, plus a bit of Tahitian dancing and fire dancing to entertain us. Next time (if we can ever go again) I will book earlier and get Patrick's tour, which includes a land tour rather than a boat tour, but I found this snorkel tour to be delightful. And the scenery amazing. On day 2 we used some of our shipboard credit to book Le Truck Tour, an open-air sort of bus that took is all around the island on land to see the amazing vistas, the remnants of WWII US military having been here, such as canon on the hillsides, and a short stop at "The World Famous Bloody Mary's," a beach bar named for the character from the South Pacific films. That was a fun photo opportunity. We also had a stop at a place where they make pareos, and it was fascinating to see how they dye them to get those beautiful colors and patterns. We enjoyed this tour a lot. I think we might've roamed around the main town afterward (a lot of our fellow cruisers did), but it was quite warm, and with my husband's disability, he finds it hard to walk far, so we were content to head back to the ship and relax that afternoon. Day 5 at Sea We had a lot of days at sea! They were all enjoyable because our cabin was like a little retreat for us, plus the activities and shows were fun. They have quite a good little entertainment troupe with some top-notch singers and dancers. There was also a magic show, and guest lecturers who were very good and entertaining! Also a "clean comedy" show which was quite good for all us uptight old white folks. Day 6 Fakarava, French Polynesia Another beautiful French Polynesian Island. In fact I think the beach we visited here may have been the most picturesque. It was one of those white sandy beaches, encircled by palm trees, but where the shallow water goes for yards and yards in front of the beach, so the water is so pale aqua it's almost white, and you can see where the water gets deeper as it's slightly darker ... It was stunning. We had booked another snorkel tour on the advice of Cruise Critic Forum members with Captain Ato. The first stop was quite a far boat ride, 40 or 45 minutes? I had read on Ato's website that there would be 6-8 people aboard, and there were actually 14, so the boat was a bit crowded. But most of the lovely cruisers we met were charming people, and some I even knew already from the Forum here, and so the crowd wasn't a big problem. Our first snorkel stop was in water I would say around 20-30 feet deep but with a beautiful patch of coral reef that came right up to the surface. There were 2 sharks, and a better variety of fish than I had yet seen in French Polynesia. Our next stop was, I believe, that beautiful beach. The boats dropped us off in water a couple feet deep, and we waded through the shallows into the beach. We were swimming or relaxing on the beach as the guides prepared the lunch. They broke the tops off coconuts for us to drink from, a true tropical picnic. The food was fish and sausage, rice and coconut bread, plus there was water and beer and juice ... Lovely lunch. Capt Ato told us the wind had changed so we couldn't get to the next snorkel stop he had planned for us, and he took us to a different beach, but the visibility for snorkeling there wasn't great; I sat out on the beach most of the time, enjoying the stunning scenery. I guess Ato was right about a change in the wind. As we left for the next snorkel stop, we were in bumpy water. Because of the crowd, I was right up at the front of the boat, and it kept riding up on the waves and then slamming down hard -- it became very painful by the time the day was over! The first four hours of this tour were terrific; the last hour was torturous! I am sure the change in wind and bumpy water were a surprise to Ato, and otherwise the tour had been great. Day 7-? At sea When we left French Polynesia, we had a lot of days at sea to Pitcairn Island (where we couldn't go ashore, and then on to Easter Island where we planned to go ashore). As I say, the days at sea were not bad at all. It did rain! We had several rainy days, so sitting by the pool wasn't so fun, but I had a luscious spa day one day, and suite guests get access to the spa deck where there are quiet and gently whirling thalassotherapy pools that I took advantage of, and of course, the champagne bubble tub on our balcony. And then there were the lectures! Gloeta Massie was the biologist who told us about the flora and fauna we would be seeing, as well as other astounding science stuff. Her lectures were hilarious as well as informative. If she's going to be on your ship, be sure you go to her talks! James Peterkin is an Easter Island expert who prepared us for both Pitcairn and Easter Islands with fascinating lectures on the history, culture, language, etc. His explanation of the Mutiny on the Bounty story was eye-opening and riveting. And his talks about Easter Island kept us all in suspense: what are those statues? why did they make them? why did they stop making them? what caused the collapse of Easter Island? He did a great job of preparing us for these stops! At Pitcairn the island is too tiny and infrastructure too small to accommodate a cruise ship full of people going ashore, so the islanders came to us. They set up shop with their handmade crafts, curios, t-shirts, postcards, stamps, etc. They were all very friendly and genial people and talented artists and craftspeople. One of them, an immigrant to Pitcairn, gave a talk about life on the island today which was quite interesting. We had more days at sea to Rapa Nui, which is what the locals call Easter Island. We were so ready to get a look at those statues! But we had been warned that there's no dock, and only a small harbor that's difficult to navigate, so it was possible our tenders wouldn't make it in if the weather was wrong ... So we did NOT get to set foot on Easter Island! This was the biggest disappointment of the entire cruise! We circumnavigated it, but did not get to see the moai for ourselves. Then it was back to see for a few more days. Let me mention the restaurants here. Oceania bills itself as having the finest cuisine at sea, and I can't argue. The Terrace Cafe, which is the buffet where you can always get any meal, was one of our favorites! They would grill you a lobster tail while you waited -- and some of their theme nights were terrific. Likewise one of my favorite meals was the brunch in the Grand Dining Room, which is the other place that's always serving with no reservations required. In fact, I think I enjoyed the food there every time we went. The specialty restaurants, where you had to have a reservation, were also quite good. The French restaurant, Jacques, has a menu by celebrity chef Jacques Pepin. I think Mike’s favorite was the steakhouse, Polo, and my favorite was the Oriental fusion place, Red Ginger. I had a trio of scallops there that was that perfect bite, where you put it in your mouth, and you have to stop and just sit a few seconds and let that deliciousness settle in … Lovely. There was also an Italian specialty restaurant, and surprisingly it was my least favorite of the 4. It did have WONDERFUL desserts, though. Definitely worth going. All the food was included in your fare, even the specialty restaurants, but those did require reservations, and I understand when the ship is full, it can be hard to get a reservation. We were guaranteed 2 reservations at each of the specialty restaurants because of our being in a suite, but we enjoyed Terrace Café and the Grand Dining Room nearly as much as the others; the food was all around very tasty. Day 16, Lima, Peru, Disembarkation Like everything on Oceania, disembarkation was easy. We did have to set our bags outside the door the night before like you do, but they took our bags to the JW Marriott where Oceania had a complimentary lounge for passengers who had to wait all day on their flight home, which we did. Our flight was at midnight that night. The service also included transfer to the hotel and from the hotel to the airport at the time of your flight -- I don't know if that was a benefit of our having a suite or if it was complimentary for everyone, but it was nice. To get a room at the hotel was about $350, and you couldn't even get into it until 3 p.m. I didn't want to spend the day at the hotel though and I had booked with ToursByLocals.com for a custom tour of Lima. We had read about Lima and decided we wanted to see the Inca market in Miraflores, the "Love Park" also in Miraflores, and the neighborhood of Barranco which is supposed to be scenic and touristy. Our guide had agreed to this and said she would also recommend a good place for lunch for us, and if there was time, show us the city center. Her regular half-day tour in Lima began in city center and included monasteries, museums and historic buildings that didn't interest us as much as the things we had prioritized. As the tour began, we were driven through horrendous traffic to the city center. I should have spoken up at that point and reminded the guide that we had arranged a custom tour with Miraflores and Barranco at the top of the list and the city center reserved for "if we have time," but I didn't speak up, so the rest is on me. The traffic as we took in the historic sites was atrocious, so the van stopped and starts in fits, and my husband got car sick! After a couple hours, I finally did say that we needed to stop by the hotel and let him get inside for a bit, but by the time we got there, he didn't want them to wait; he wasn't getting back in that van. So we didn't get to see the scenic sights in Lima we had hoped to see — and had paid to see! If you book with TBL, be sure you are clear on what you want to see and speak up if it is not happening. I should have. However we saw a bit of lovely scenery near the hotel. We walked across the street to a very modern and popular mall that's built into the bluff facing the coastline. It has a lovely children's playground and park on top, and all chic stores in the multi-level mall. It was a beautiful sunny day for a little stroll, so that was nice. But it still left us with hours to sit around the hotel until our ride to the airport and our midnight flight home. I fell asleep on the plane before it even took off and woke up when we were about 40 minutes outside of Houston … our dream trip of a lifetime was over! If you're looking for a cruise with a rock-climbing wall and a water slide on the ship, Oceania is not for you. But if you want to relax and enjoy great service and good amenities, I highly recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This cruise went from Papeete, Tahiti, to Lima, Peru, with stops at Bora Bora, Fakarava, Pitcairn Island and Easter Island. At Pitcairn the local inhabitants (descendants of the Bounty mutineers) come on board to sell crafts and eat ice ... Read More
This cruise went from Papeete, Tahiti, to Lima, Peru, with stops at Bora Bora, Fakarava, Pitcairn Island and Easter Island. At Pitcairn the local inhabitants (descendants of the Bounty mutineers) come on board to sell crafts and eat ice cream; one of them gave an interesting talk about life on the island. At Easter Island we were unable to land because of rough seas (apparently a fairly common occurrence). There were a lot of days at sea; two between Fakarava and Pitcairn, and four between Easter Island and Lima. There was a wonderful naturalist, Gloeta Massie, who gave brilliant and funny talks a few times, and a lecturer who talked a few times about Easter Island and Pitcairn. There were a lot of fun programs organized by the staff and the cruise director, Peter Roberts. Excellent bridge lessons and duplicate bridge, putting contests on a mini-golf course, shuffleboard, trivia quizzes and Mensa challenges, some movies. There were shows, music and karaoke that we did not attend because they were late at night. The food was excellent, with four specialty restaurants - Italian, steakhouse, French and Chinese/Asian fusion, with no extra charge. Dining was also excellent in the main dining room and the buffet restaurant. But: The prices for the excursions were exorbitant - about 4 times what is cost for locally arranged excursions - and the transfers were wildly overpriced. Oceania offered airport transfers for $359 US and a hotel transfer for $119 per person. We went online and booked a private car for two of us for $35 with Lima Limo www.limalimo.pe . The driver, Geraldo, was so good that we hired him to take us around Lima that afternoon to see the Larco museum (fantastic!) and the gold museum; he charged us $90 US for 5 + hours; then he took us to the airport the next day from our hotel for $35. One trick: taxis and limos for the most part cannot come to the location of the ship at the cruise pier; you need to take the bus to the pier gate. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
I have never been on Oceania before (only Princess, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Holland America and Regent) and after the experience I had, I am going to try and limit my cruise experiences to Oceania, if at all possible. The way I was ... Read More
I have never been on Oceania before (only Princess, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Holland America and Regent) and after the experience I had, I am going to try and limit my cruise experiences to Oceania, if at all possible. The way I was treated, the quality of the ship desgin and materials, the quality of the staff, the itinerary, and most importantly, the dining experience just set this cruise line above all others that I have experienced - and by a wide margin. The cabin (9110) had a large veranda and felt spacious. The bathroom was impressive with a full tub and a rainshower head in the shower. The water was perfect temperature throughout the cruise. Of course, the most important person we met was Lilya, our cabin stewardess and she was nothing short of magnificent - keeping everything so neat and tidy and it always felt the room was in perfect condition. Her warm demeanor meant everything to us and we will always love Ukraine after having her cheerful, professional and detailed assistance every day. We also loved Chrismerelda on our Concierge floor - such a lovely person and so responsive and helpful with our specific needs. In fact, we loved the entire Concierge floor experience - and the espresso machine was worth its weight in gold. We loved the speciality coffee bar on Deck 14 overlooking the pool. We loved the Waves sandwiches, the afternoon tea in horizons, the terrace cafe for breakfast and the Grand Dining Room for nightly dinners (though it was our least favorite experience). And that's because the specialty dining on this ship simply cannot be beat. Toscana was authentic and welcoming. Jaques was a delightful visit to France. Polo Club prepared perfect steaks (and a very inattentive woman as sommalier), and Red Ginger was our favorite of all - with special thanks to the Maitre D' who was nothing short of a true 'boss' - we are indebted to her for our service and experience there. The spa was much better than on other ships and we loved the Canyon Ranch products (especially the post-sun cooling product). Nice gym and very relaxing private spa deck. The theatre space was intimate, as was the lovely piano bar and we enjoyed that. In fact, the ship NEVER felt full (though it was 100% occupied). The artwork throughout the ship made a particular impression on me - from sculpture to paintings and of course the lalique everywhere. It felt more like a luxurious art gallery than a state-of-the-art disco and I appreciated the more sophisticated approach. Besides the speciality dining, I have to say that the approach of charging up front for coffees and sodas and not making me use a card every five minutes felt like a great indulgence and I much prefer that approach. And the specialty dining not having additional charge also made me more relaxed. We didn't purchase any shore excursions because the ports were all accessible and easy for us to navigate to blue waters and private beaches. I loved that the ship was the smallest of all my previous experiences and it felt size-appropriate for Tahitian islands. Embarkation was fast and professional - a tremendous team boarding and leaving. I would dearly love to sail on the Marina again. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our first Oceania cruise after many on Celebrity and Holland America. Our French Polynesia cruise was a charter so some of our experiences likely are different from a "regular" cruise so I'll try to stick to the ... Read More
This was our first Oceania cruise after many on Celebrity and Holland America. Our French Polynesia cruise was a charter so some of our experiences likely are different from a "regular" cruise so I'll try to stick to the parts I think you would find on both. First of all, we loved the size of the ship compared to the larger ocean liners. At 1,200 guests this made the ship much more manageable and easier to explore. We also loved that it seemed much less commercial than other ships -- no art sales, few shops, a tiny casino. This ship was built for relaxing. We had a penthouse suite which in a word was awesome. Tons of space, tons of storage (so much so that we probably didn't use half of the drawers) and a huge walk in closet. It was a perfect place to relax and unwind. Being in a penthouse suite gets you a butler -- he was very efficient and useful. We had him book our spots in the specialty restaurants but he was on hand for almost anything we needed. The food -- even in the main dining room -- was by far the best we have experienced on the 15 cruises we have taken before. The specialty restaurants in particular were terrific. We especially loved the French-themed one. Another plus was that at least for this cruise there was no surcharge for any of the specialty restaurants. We only ate in the main dining room three nights out of eight. Not great for the waistline but wonderful for the palate! Since this was a charter, most of the entertainment was brought on from the charter company so it's impossible to rate the Oceania's entertainment. Just understand that since this is a mid-sized ship the entertainment venues are not what you would get on a larger vessel. As for service, we generally had excellent service throughout. The one hiccup we had was resolved to our satisfaction and the staff bent over backwards to apologize and rectify the situation. Travel to French Polynesia is more expensive than other destinations but we were very happy with our cruise and with the Oceania Marina. I'd book Oceania again in a heartbeat. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We are not new to cruising as this was our 15th cruise but the first with Oceania. We were attracted to Oceania because of the French Polynesia itinerary as well as its reputation for good service and food. We absolutely loved the ... Read More
We are not new to cruising as this was our 15th cruise but the first with Oceania. We were attracted to Oceania because of the French Polynesia itinerary as well as its reputation for good service and food. We absolutely loved the itinerary as well as the very good service by our cabin staff and butler as well as the food in the specialty restaurants. However, we found that the added costs were not compensated by our expectations for value. To begin, we were very disappointed by how we were received upon boarding as well as departing. Our experience with other cruise lines has been that we were greeted with a welcoming drink as well as food available. Likewise, upon departure, we have been provided with coffee and muffins/danish etc. None of this was available on the Marina. We arrived with 200+ people on our 8 hour overseas flight. There was no welcoming drink and by the time we checked in, all food services were shut down. One would think that a table of refreshments would have been provided by the ship. Similarly, upon departing at an early hour (5:40 am), that coffee and a muffin could also have been provided. This was neither a good first or last impression of the cruise. As part of our booking, we were provided with free unlimited internet access. This was a total joke since access was not available in most parts of the ship. Moreover, it was impossible to upload or download photos or documents. Finally, it was impossible to contact others via FaceTime or Skype. On all of our other cruises, this was never a problem, I then learned that for an added $15/day, I could upgrade to unlimited streaming. I did so. However, although I could sometimes (but not always) access FaceTime, I still could not upload photos or download documents. This was particularly concerning since I needed to be reached due to an ill family member. Needless to say, this caused considerable stress. I enjoy working out. The fitness center was tiny and the room for classes was even tinier. On a positive note, the fitness instructor, Diana was superb. She knew her stuff, was inspirational and very nice. There was a sign up sheet for classes which was done to limit the number of passengers attending. However, the fitness staff let in whoever showed up. As a result, there was often 20 passengers in a class that was listed for 12. This made the experience challenging and at times, unsafe. The Terrace Cafe had a limited variety of food. At times, I would have loved to have a scoop of tuna or egg salad. This was never available. Although a crew member was immediately available to serve us water, coffee or juice, anything else was simply unavailable. On three occasions I asked for sparkling water and never received it. The dining room was very pleasing. The staff was great. But the food was hit or miss. Some was excellent while others, just awful. The speciality restaurants were excellent. We especially enjoyed the Red Ginger. We found the cruise offered excursions outrageously priced. We only took one excursion from the ship - a one hour glass bottom boat right for $129/person. We enjoyed it but it was very overpriced. Alcohol prices were similarly overpriced. I didn't order one drink the entire time I was onboard - simply out of principle. The most outrageous cost was the airport to port & return transfer. Since we our flight arrived at 9:40 pm and left at 8:40 am and because we were unfamiliar with the services in Papaeete, we decided to take the transfers. Each one way transfer was $129/person. The ride was under 10 minutes. Worth of all, there were delays at each end. This was utterly ridiculous. From now, we'll stay with Celebrity our preferred cruise line. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We travelled on 30 January for a 10 day Polynesian cruise on the ms marina and what should have been the trip I dreamed off turned completely bad due to incompetent staff. I like to warn future travelers to have a good medical insurance, ... Read More
We travelled on 30 January for a 10 day Polynesian cruise on the ms marina and what should have been the trip I dreamed off turned completely bad due to incompetent staff. I like to warn future travelers to have a good medical insurance, lucky we had one. But honestly I felt shy to present these bills to the insurance. We were totally ripped off by the medical center. I understand that everybody likes to make money but there are limits. I was treated for a dry cough and difficulty to bread (saturation of 92) for 6 days by intravenous with wrong antibiotics. They even checked blood twice and made chest x rays. The doctor was unable to give the correct diagnosis after a bill of 13000 US!!! The nurses are doing a great job but about the doctor I have my doubts about his capacity to do the job. He advised on disembarkation to visit another doctor, I should have appreciated if he should have offered that earlier, we could have disembarked in Moorea or Bora Bora and fly back to Papeete. On top the reception pre authorized without any reason twice 13000 US , so I had to wait 10 days before my credit card was again working normally. After leaving the boat I flew to Auckland where after doing a blood test and x ray they diagnosis pneumonia. Is as a doctor you cannot find that then you have a problem. This incompetence finally spoiled the trip that was my ultimate destination trip. And pretending that the cruise is for foodies is to much honour, the French and Italian restaurant are very good, the Asian is a catastrophe (I live in Asia and know what is what)the tom kha gai I ordered was like water and the curry was disgusting. The buffet at terrace café becomes boring after a while. I hope that future travelers will be aware of the practices on the oceania cruises, I confronted them with these issues on my return but found a useless customer service who seems not to be able to read and understand a mail. This was my first cruise and the last on Oceania. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Yes, Oceania has the best cuisine at sea, unless you are health conscientious. Overweight and obese passengers were in pig heaven on Marina. We personally found the food way too salty, too heavy with too much butter and too much sweet ... Read More
Yes, Oceania has the best cuisine at sea, unless you are health conscientious. Overweight and obese passengers were in pig heaven on Marina. We personally found the food way too salty, too heavy with too much butter and too much sweet stuff. For the first time on a cruise we had trouble finding something that appealed to us. We personally love fruits, nuts, vegetables, good bred, fresh fish; Mediterranean, Indian, Thai, Chinese and Japanese cuisine. Fruits on the Marina were mostly limited to melons and a little pineapple. Bananas were green or otherwise inedible, as we were told the Marina tried to avoid catering locally and practically all provisions on board were deep frozen. Only rarely was a fresh local fish on the menu. Bread for breakfast consisted mainly of fatty, sweet pastry, I got nauseous just looking at it. Fresh omelettes were fried in butter, the burnt butter was sticking in black spots to the dish, ugh. Frying eggs in butter is unacceptable to us. Fresh oatmeal was a heavy creamy substance that didn't resemble oatmeal. We have never eaten as poor on a cruise as on this one, maybe we had been too spoiled on Silversea or our Regent cruises, but these other cruise line don't boast the best cuisine at sea. But we must admit, the great majority of the passengers on the Marina craved the food, they loved it. They got their moneys worth of salt, sugar and fat and were thus able to accumulate more additional pounds. The clientele on the Marina was different from the other cruises we were used to and preferred. The ship was too big for our liking; we love the smaller ships, where we get to know and recognise most of the passengers and crew after just a few days. The ship itself was excellent, beautifully maintained and a pleasure to sail on. We did love our Penthouse Suite, this is the way to travel. We had no need of the butler, we just loved the spaciousness of the suite high up on deck 11. The staff was excellent and well managed. We did find the sommeliers were under too much pressure to sell the more expensive wines. Oceania is not very "inclusivy"; our suite had 3 free laundry bags offered for our cruise, 3 days for the return of the laundry was too long for us. We preferred the self service laundry which my wife could finish in one day. For the self service laundry Oceania charged 2 $ for washing and another 2 $ for drying, wow, that was another first for us. We did find the shore excursions too expensive and had made our own arrangements. Would we choose Oceania again? No. But we can recommend Oceania without reservations to people who love big chunk of meats, hamburgers, hot dogs, thick french fries and lots of sweets; on Oceania you can get your moneys worth. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
For the middle-aged and older crowd, this cruise was amazing! We arrived in Papeete a day early to insure we made the ship on time in case of any flight/weather issues. We stayed at the Intercontinental on Tahiti, which was very nice and ... Read More
For the middle-aged and older crowd, this cruise was amazing! We arrived in Papeete a day early to insure we made the ship on time in case of any flight/weather issues. We stayed at the Intercontinental on Tahiti, which was very nice and they also had a fabulous Polynesian show the night we were there. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly, no problems. The thing I liked about Marina is that is is a smaller ship, so less people. No crowded, stuffed elevators, no long waits in line for food, and best of all, no kids! I think there were 2 kids on the ship, but it's not geared toward kids, so there's nothing for them to do really. The food was amazing, absolutely the best meals I've ever had on a cruise ship. It was eating a gourmet meal every time you sat down to eat, even upstairs in the café! The specialty restaurants were just as wonderfully delicious and very gourmet. All of the drinks anywhere on the ship were fantastic! There was actually liquor in them! On all our other cruises, we end up just not drinking because the drinks have so much juice, you can't tell it's a drink.These were top-notch! We had Mai-Tai's, Cosmos, Piña Coladas, and they were all excellent. On every other regular cruise line, I gave up and stuck to Rum & Coke, because the fancy drinks were just terrible. Service on this ship was impeccable. We never had to ask for anything, ever. Staterooms were always ready, clean, chocolates on the bed, mats on the floor by our bedside, slippers, robes, ice bucket filled. The entire staff was friendly and welcoming and very diverse. We were offered an upgrade at a reduced price from a balcony room to a penthouse suite a week before the cruise....we accepted and were so glad we did! Lots of room and plenty of shoe and drawer space! Walk-in closet, gorgeous bathroom with a tub/shower AND a shower. Always stocked. Always clean. There was a fantastic selection of excursions to meet anyone's tastes, from easy to adventurous. Tendering in and out of ports was excellent, fast, and always went smoothly. Never a problem. Although we did bring our own 24-hour hand sanitizer, there was plenty of stations all over and outside the ship, so no excuses for germs! The ship was spotless and someone was always cleaning it, even the outside! Entertainment was just okay.....geared more toward the older crowd. I would have liked to have seen a comedy show, but the shows we did see were great. We missed quite a few, because by the time they started (9:30pm), we were so exhausted from the day, we were in our stateroom reading and falling asleep! One thing that impressed me is that the cruise line had special get-togethers for the singles and even a gay-lesbian get-together. We did do happy hour every evening around 5:30-6 before dinner and one evening 2 of the 3 bars (our favorites) were closed for a promotional group, which we were not happy about. I look forward to going on another Oceania cruise and now I'm spoiled! I don't want to go back to the regular cruise lines! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
Honestly, our best cruise yet. We had a concierge level cabin and it was worth the splurge . The food was awesome in every restaurant and the main dining room. The ship was awesome as in being the right size and not too big. The service ... Read More
Honestly, our best cruise yet. We had a concierge level cabin and it was worth the splurge . The food was awesome in every restaurant and the main dining room. The ship was awesome as in being the right size and not too big. The service was awesome. The only thing that was a bit off was the fitness center. Not well appointed but, we just spent our time walking and swimming in the Tahitian waters instead. Loved the coffee bar. Loved the homemade ice cream. Loved the daily fresh fruit smoothies and juice bar. Loved the daily lobster tail off the fan tail at night in the warm breeze. Loved the spa and Canyon Ranch hot tubs on the front. Red Ginger was our favorite restaurant and we loved the experience. We would save up to do Oceania again in a heartbeat. It is one line we would try to repeat again as it was expensive but, worth every cent. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
The food really is wonderful. The cabin was really nice too, comfortable bed and linens. The staff was very friendly especially our steward.But if you wanted a drink at the pool you best hustle on over to the bar because they aren't ... Read More
The food really is wonderful. The cabin was really nice too, comfortable bed and linens. The staff was very friendly especially our steward.But if you wanted a drink at the pool you best hustle on over to the bar because they aren't going to ask if you need anything. Odd because all the restaurant people were on it! Entertainment was marginal to poor. The pool side band played about an hour and quit at noon. What's up with that. The comedian was great - talking about marriage. One of the lectures was the "history of cruise ships" -- which was not interesting to us. Other topics would have been more interesting. The cooking classes were always full - and also had a cost. There were wonderful restaurants which had no cost. You had to make a reservation for the restaurants on the day you wanted If it was not full or others did not show or canceled you could then go to the restaurant. Our really bad experience was with the destination services desk. The counter Manager raised her voice at a girl, Natalie, who was trying her best to explain her complaint in English. Her issue, which ironically was ours too, was failure to get a $199 credit for an excursion that was canceled due to bad weather. She, like us, thought we should get full credit for it - as it was one of the 3 included excursions in our fare. We were to get 3 "free" excursions. When we got 2 "free" excursions - we felt a credit was appropriate. We weren't the only ones that felt this way. When Natalie asked what she was supposed to do with her excursion tickets - the manager replied "keep them for a souvenir". Natalie, her husband and my wife and I talked to the General Manager. He explained that the "free" excursions were an advertising gimmick to get customers to sign up for the cruise. The "free" excursions essentially had no value - but, as a courtesy Oceania would credit our account $100. My stance was that if the excursions had no value then why did they put a $199 charge for them. We ended up getting $100 credit for a $199 excursion. But if I can convince you to cruise with other lines I'm happy. We paid nearly $10,000 for the cruise and they chose to cheat us out of $198 on one excursion and $240 on another. Amazing!!! I wouldn't say this cruise was "fun". It did offer excursions that were incredible with talented locals who entertained with glee. Post cruise we had to be off the ship by 9:00 am. Flights out of Tahiti are at 11:00 pm. One of the good things Oceanic gave us a choice to have our luggage transported to the airport - which meant we did not have to lug it around all day. The luggage was delivered at 6:30 at the airport. That was really nice. One of the hotels, Tahiti Pearl Beach Resort,Oceania offered an excursion that picked up passengers to hotels until transport to the airport in the evening. This resort was the same place we stayed before the cruise. Please read my wife's review of Tahiti Pearl Beach Resort. We gave it a 2 star rating, the breakfast ($30 each) was fine - dinner food was terrible and expensive. The resort had uncomfortable living room furnishings Anyway, the post cruise excursion lets passengers hang out in a ballroom with the rest of the gang, eat bad food and relax. We noticed that the hotel had a sign that a day rate was $125 but we found out from other travelers that the resort charged up to $400 for a day room. The pool at the Tahiti Pearl Beach Resort was nice when they weren't having spinner classes - twice a day. Try Royal Caribbean, Viking, Holland America or anything else Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We just returned from our first Oceania cruise. (This is our 5th cruise). We did the South Pacific starting and ending in Papeete Tahiti for a 10 day cruise. We absolutely loved Oceania. We would sail Oceania again in a heart beat and ... Read More
We just returned from our first Oceania cruise. (This is our 5th cruise). We did the South Pacific starting and ending in Papeete Tahiti for a 10 day cruise. We absolutely loved Oceania. We would sail Oceania again in a heart beat and most of the fellow travelers we talked to felt the same. The staff are plentiful, kind, caring and sensitive. They serve the food in buffets to keep you safe. They change the linens on lounge chairs to keep everything safe and comfortable. I have never had such consistently wonderful service on a cruise. I felt spoiled each and every momment. I had to go to the medical clinic and received excellent service (ok the bill was pretty high-like USA healthcare prices!) The rooms, the amenities, the food and the service were all spectacular! The bed and bedding were just dreamy. We did not sample the entertainment. We find our entertainment by watching the natural beauty so cannot report on the ships entertainment. We booked last minute within a month of sailing date. We booked a concierge suite with a balcony and had no regrets. We could have taken better advantage of the very wonderful (and free to us) concierge. The concierge can help you with anything! The fridge in our room and the concierge lounge is stocked with free beverages. No charges for coffee (including specialty coffees), water bottles, soft drinks, room service 24 X7 was wonderful and quick. The food was FANTASTIC! All specialty dining is included in the cruise fare. You need recommendations and we got reservations into all 4 ahead of time (that may be the limit-1 reservation in all 4). For general dining we loved the Grand Dining Room. In the Terrace Cafe you can get grilled lobster, fish, steaks every evening with an outdoor table. One night we ate lobster while watching the sunset in Bora Bora. I had serval surf and turf sandwiches in the patio grill near the pool. Ice cream, malts, shakes, and smoothies are free and delicious. So much fresh fruit and veggies! It was easy to eat healthy. I am gluten free/Celiac and never had a better experience with help with food. I could eat at every venue and stayed completely safe. That is a real accomplishment for a 10 day cruise. The wine and drinks by the glass were fantastic and cost 10 dollars or less. My husband does not drink so I just paid as I went and used my onboard ship credit for alcohol. All of the oceania excursions were closed when we booked late-so we arranged our own excursions. Some ahead of time, many at the peer! We paid Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
The food and service on this cruise were fabulous. I could really not have asked for more or better. I was sad that we missed stopping in Huahine because of a heavy rain but that could not be avoided and I absolutely would recommend this ... Read More
The food and service on this cruise were fabulous. I could really not have asked for more or better. I was sad that we missed stopping in Huahine because of a heavy rain but that could not be avoided and I absolutely would recommend this trip to anyone! We expected bad weather and really had hardly any rain. The locals were wonderful, did a beautiful job welcoming the ship and the guests to each port. The food in Red Ginger might be the best food I have ever eaten in my life. I had the Lobster Pad Thai and my husband had the Chilean Sea Bass, both were delicious. We stayed at Chalet Tahiti one night on either end of trip and host, Jean Denis was amazing as well. If you stay in one of the other hotels you are better off booking it yourself rather than through the cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
I had taken Insignia last fall to the cottages and coves, and fell in love with Oceania. I was a die hard Windstar cruiser. This was my fourth trip to the French Polynesia and decided to take Oceania. We upgraded to the PH. 11009 and ... Read More
I had taken Insignia last fall to the cottages and coves, and fell in love with Oceania. I was a die hard Windstar cruiser. This was my fourth trip to the French Polynesia and decided to take Oceania. We upgraded to the PH. 11009 and we’re very pleased with our room and the services. The customer service from Oceania is by far the best in the industry. Thank you for another great cruise. You have yet again, exceeded my expectations. I’m not big on the entertainment though. While I believe Oceania does draw an older clientele, the music and shows I found were somewhat dated. The comedian was very good. Your customer service representative Rachael Ruebel who handled some of my daughters and my requests went above and beyond the call of duty, and she should be acknowledged for her talents and truly being one of your greatest assets in customer service. She, I would say was one of the main reason I am a committed cruiser on Oceania. In this day and age, when customer service seems to be lacking, your employees from the top, all the way to the not so top are exceptional. You treat your employees good, they bring your customers back. Great cruise. Thank you for making my daughter and my cruise amazing. See you on the next one. Just wish you had single cruises for us widow travelers. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
Easter Island-RAPA NUI was wonderful. The stop at Pitcairn Island to visit the descendants of the BOUNTY mutineers was terrific. Tahiti, Bora Bora, Raiatea are classic south seas destinations. Tours of ports of call were extremely costly ... Read More
Easter Island-RAPA NUI was wonderful. The stop at Pitcairn Island to visit the descendants of the BOUNTY mutineers was terrific. Tahiti, Bora Bora, Raiatea are classic south seas destinations. Tours of ports of call were extremely costly but all were excellent. Seeing the giant MOI on Rapa Nui is a once in the lifetime experience. It was a surprise that Easter Island is absolutely beautiful. Greenery abounds since vegetation has been planted from all around the world since the late 1800's. Marina pax were extremely fortunate that we could tender to the island on the two days of our visit. Oceania Marina did not live up to its glossy reputation on this cruise. Food especially in the vaunted speciality restaurants was not totally enjoyable. The main dining room had the best most consistent food on the ship. Food on Celebrity,NCL,HAL, Princess is s good or better. While we went on Marina for the itinerary-not its reportedly wonderful food, we were surprised that many people shared our less than positive food experiences. It seemed that people's feelings about the food improved after multiple glasses of adult beverages at mealtime. And it was nice to have six or seven restaurants to choose from- no set mealtimes Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We very much enjoyed our first experience with Oceania on the Marina for the January 2019 Chile to Papeete cruise. We thought the value for the money was great. We had 9 sea days on our 18 day cruise and I found interesting things to ... Read More
We very much enjoyed our first experience with Oceania on the Marina for the January 2019 Chile to Papeete cruise. We thought the value for the money was great. We had 9 sea days on our 18 day cruise and I found interesting things to do everyday. The lectures offered (morning and afternoons) were informative and give us a better understanding of the region and its history. I loved the cooking classes, I attended 7! The evening entertainment was so/so but with friends along we had no trouble having fun talking, listening to music and enjoying adult beverages. We had a verandah cabin. While it was smaller than what we've sailed in previously (HAL Signature Suites) it met our needs. The furnishings were in good order and we thought the bathroom was well laid out and a good size for the cabin category. The only negative in my opinion was the location of the closets so close to the bedside, that was inconvenient at times. The cabin attendant did a good job but was the most crabby cruise ship employee I have ever encountered. It was the only time I have ever left a negative comment about an individual on a comment card. I really appreciated not having to wait for any type of seating. Whether it was a dining area, in a bar or around the pool there was always available seating. Beverage service was excellent with the exception of the indoor area of the Terrace Cafe. The food was wonderful with only a couple of misses the entire cruise. We ate in every restaurant with the exception of the couple extra fee venues. Service was prompt and friendly. Overall a very enjoyable cruise! Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
18 months previously, my wife and I did a cruise on Oceania Insignia, which was quite enjoyable. This cruise on the Oceania Regatta was a disappointment. Unfortunately for the Regatta, we had just done a cruise on the Cunard Queen Victoria ... Read More
18 months previously, my wife and I did a cruise on Oceania Insignia, which was quite enjoyable. This cruise on the Oceania Regatta was a disappointment. Unfortunately for the Regatta, we had just done a cruise on the Cunard Queen Victoria and there was no comparison. The Queen Victoria is far better. We have done 26 cruises on 11 different cruise lines. The cost of cruising with Oceania is very expensive because they claim they are so good. The crew on Regatta were wonderful, polite and friendly. So were the Queen Victoria and other cruise line crew. The cabin was the same as many other cruise lines. The single beds were very narrow and had a sloping top so that you had to be constantly alert not to roll out of bed. The general decor of the ship was very good, but again, inferior to the Queen Victoria. The food was the biggest disappointment. Oceania claim they have the best cuisine of any cruise ship. This is definitely not true. It appeared that there were two chefs working. One was very good and the other was hopeless. One meal of fish or meat would be exquisite and the next had to be left uneaten due to being so dry and tough. Many of the meals would have so much salt on them that your mouth and throat burned for hours afterwards. What would this do to people with a heart problem who could not have salt? In the buffet on the 9th deck, the passageway between the serving counters was so narrow that one had trouble getting to the counter and you were being continually bumped by other passengers. My wife and I reached the stage that we looked upon eating as an unpleasant chore. So many other passengers whom we spoke to all felt the same way. The dress code is claimed to be upper country club. There were a large percentage of passengers who dressed as if they were having a day at a fun park. The gratuities and service charge on drinks was very high and it was interesting that if I ordered a double Drambuie then I would be charged service on the higher price, although they were still only bringing one glass. We did not take any shore excursions as they are far too expensive. Having travelled through over 100 countries, many of them by backpacking, we always do our own thing when on shore. The entertainment at night was very average and became monotonous. The seating is such that it is difficult to see unless you are in the front row. So inferior to the Queen Victoria's magnificent theatre. The entertainers on the Queen Victoria had 1,000 people in their 70's, 80's and 90's all standing up, clapping and swaying in time to the music and singing. When we arrived in Sydney Australia, the cruise line wanted USD119 per person for a transfer to the airport. A Taxi cost us USD75 for two people. The final insult was to collect my suitcase on the jetty when we disembarked and found that the Regatta crew had split the AUD500 Samsonite case down the side when they unloaded it. Oceania will only refund less than ¼ to me. We will never sail with Oceania again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
After over 40 cruises on most all major cruise lines we wanted to try something different- different itinerary, different ship, different size of ship, different class of ship. We did leg 7 of their 2018 Around the World (Tahiti to Los ... Read More
After over 40 cruises on most all major cruise lines we wanted to try something different- different itinerary, different ship, different size of ship, different class of ship. We did leg 7 of their 2018 Around the World (Tahiti to Los Angeles). Although more than we normally pay for a cruise, when we factored in OBC, air fare, etc it was comparable to a suite on NCL or Aqua on Celebrity, so that is what we shall compare with. Air was thru Air Tahiti Nui- 11 hour red-eye with seats large enough for a 10 year old. When we arrived at 5am everything was closed- couldn't get a wheelchair. Fly any other airline when possible! However, the stay at the Intercontinental Tahiti was OMG! Booked online- be sure to get breakfast included- otherwise $43pp for a OMG buffet! Everything here is very expensive. Went into town for lunch- it was not less $. We arrived Fri so we could do the luau dinner show- another OMG! But worth every penny. Our room had a view of Moorea & the lagoon. Because ship was not full and this was only a leg of the RTW embarkation was easy- just walk on! Ship was very elegant, but showing its age. Cabin carpet was very stained, balcony furniture had paint peeling off. Glad I upgraded to balcony for an 18 day cruise with alot of sea days- but was still very small. Standard bathroon- could not turn around in it. POOR rating for shore excursions & activities. Shore ex were very expensive ($199 for 4 hrs), not much choice, and because ports are small in French Polynesia some were sold out before we boarded. The only one we tried was messed up- when our tour bus got to the train station they didn't know anything about us- no train that day! Took us 2 days to get a refund. As almost 1/2 of the cruisers were already on the ship for 5 months they did their own parties, activities, etc. Made us feel very unwelcome, both as first timers on Oceania and not part of RTW cruise. With 9 sea days only had 2 activities I was interested in. Had some good enrichment lectures. Had bridge & art studio. No dance classes, not much dancing or night life. Piano in the martini lounge was good and went til midnight or until everyone left (usually before that). Service was inconsistent, and really expected much better for this level of cruiseline. Some servers were good, some were not (waited long time to get dirty dishes cleared, had to ask repeatedly for water refills, etc). Especially bad in Specialty restaurant- Tuscana- although early and empty would not move our table away from kitchen. Worst service. Although Polo made up for it- was excellent, always welcoming. Had a joke- if asked a question at reception desk knew it would be wrong answer. Also had trouble getting special menu- finally got it right about 1/2 way through the cruise. Concierge never introduced herself- very short hours. didn't do much and offered nothing. On other lines had pager and was available most of the time. FOOD is what they are known for, and didn't disappoint! Menu's were OMG! Food was OMG! Room service and afternoon tea were excellent! If food is the most important thing you want Oceania. We are light eaters, and felt that Blu on Celebrity was as good if not better. Have not had a suite on Celebrity, so haven't tried Luminaire. Suites on NCL have private dining room for lunch & breakfast only, which is also very good. Cruise was excellent, just not for us. We are probably the only ones on this cruise that did not book future cruises on Oceania. Our next cruises are on RCI & Celebrity. And don't you dare mention that you cruise Carnival while on Oceania! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Getting aboard was painless. Oceanview cabin was small clean and quiet! The food was incredible, the servers were ALL polite and efficient. Could get a reservation at the specialty restaurants anytime. The food in the main dining room ... Read More
Getting aboard was painless. Oceanview cabin was small clean and quiet! The food was incredible, the servers were ALL polite and efficient. Could get a reservation at the specialty restaurants anytime. The food in the main dining room was just as good as the specialty restaurants!. Free Pop and water were filled in the fridge everyday. Specialty coffees, smoothies, milkshakes were available all day at no extra charge!! Entertainment was hit and miss....the average age on board was 70 so the shows were geared towards this generation. Went on a few shore excursions sponsored by the ship... they were good but waaaaay overpriced. Would recommend going with private tours that are everywhere as you arrive. Yes this was fairly pricey but you get what you pay for...You can pay up front or be nickel and dimmed to death. One final comment no photography or art sales were EVER mentioned. Would go again in an instant...have been on NCL and princess and this was a big step up. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We flew from Brisbane to Papeete via Auckland with Qantas/Air Tahiti Nui to join Marina's 18 day Pacific Stars Cruise. Frankly, Air TN could teach Qantas a thing or two re "in flight" service. We flew home ex LA with Qantas ... Read More
We flew from Brisbane to Papeete via Auckland with Qantas/Air Tahiti Nui to join Marina's 18 day Pacific Stars Cruise. Frankly, Air TN could teach Qantas a thing or two re "in flight" service. We flew home ex LA with Qantas and that was ordinary also. About the cruise! From the beginning we have now totalled nine cruises, all on Marina since she was launched in 2011.Reason? Because you got 41/2 star treatment. That is until our eighth cruise two years ago or so. Things seemed not the same. Mainly in the areas of catering, entertainment and shipboard activities. However, we made no comment thinking that maybe we had come to expect too much, but enough to decide to find another shipping line. After two years having in mind the good times on Marina we booked again on this Cruise. Without exaggeration we were disappointed. 1) Firstly, the staff generally, as always, were first class. Our Penthouse Suite was again exceptionally presented and serviced. The ship, generally, is clean and maintained as good as new. 2) But Oceania's reputation for fine catering in the Buffet Terraces is so obviously a result of cost cutting and poor quality it is unbelievable at the price. We experienced cheap meat cuts in stews, cold cauldron soups, Tough poultry hacked and served by amateurs. Mexican food poorly prepared and regularly presented. The carvery meat section offered cheap cuts and so on. Three times on different occasions we caught the ear of a rarely seen supervisory chef and they tested and agreed the soups were cold and they allowed staff to go on serving same, Finally, we celebrated Easter Sunday lunch by being treated to a Mexican unappetising set of dishes once more. 3) The Speciality Restaurants were, except for Toscana, definitely up to standard. Toscana, over several cruises, in our opinion, could be improved. 4) It is general knowledge from our experience over many cruises on Marina the entertainment is not their "long suit" ! Having said that one always had the option of retreating to the cabin and enjoying the latest movies. Not now, it seems like the cost cutter has been their too. But for one or two exceptions all we saw was video shop rejects. 5) If the general catering could emulate the wonderful and so professional cake and dessert experienced on Marina we would be talking five star here! 6) One could always enjoy and relax to professional chamber music performed by beautiful ladies in various venues such as Horizons. Not any more! The cost cutter was here too! In closing, it hurts us to say that for the money you pay Oceania in the hands of its new owner has slipped down to a 3 1/2 star rating, saved only by its excellent staff and commendable house keeping . Au revoir Marina. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
This was our first time cruising on the Oceania. We chose this cruise because it started in Papeete and ended in LA, so we only had one long distance flight. Overall, all transfers, flights, the ship, ports of call, food everything was ... Read More
This was our first time cruising on the Oceania. We chose this cruise because it started in Papeete and ended in LA, so we only had one long distance flight. Overall, all transfers, flights, the ship, ports of call, food everything was perfect. The food was good and we enjoyed the specialty restaurants. We did five ship excursions. There was only one of those excursions that we were disappointed in. The tour director was not very good and took us to the caves in Bora Bora prior to 10:00 am so there were no lights in the cave (they come on at 10:00 am and the guide should have known that). My husband almost fell as we tried navigating using the light on our cell phone. The casino was empty most of the time so it wasn't really fun to be there. But obviously, that was the fault of the ship. We had a fabulous time on this cruise. We met wonderful people, enjoyed that part of the country which we had never seen, and enjoyed all the sea days. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We had cruise three time she fore on Celebrity Solstice class before (Caribbean and twice in Mediterranean). We have just discovered a whole new world with Oceania. Oceania is for you if : (1) You like luxury at an affordable price (the ... Read More
We had cruise three time she fore on Celebrity Solstice class before (Caribbean and twice in Mediterranean). We have just discovered a whole new world with Oceania. Oceania is for you if : (1) You like luxury at an affordable price (the fact that alcoholic drinks are not included in the base price (compared to other luxury cruise lines) help to reduce the costs for those of us who can get by with a few drinks a day. (2) You love excellent food. Except for the main restaurant which was ok (a bit less quality than the main dining room on Solstice class in our experience), the rest is awesome. How many pool grills out there have Florida lobster and tenderloin burgers for lunch? We ordered them without buns. They were awesome with delicious fries. Also, the buffet is really good. Again, Florida lobster tails, lamb chops, sirloin steaks, etc every night. And snow crab claws at least three or four times during the cruise. Absolutely delicious buffet. The four specialty restaurants are very good. I stuffed myself with Dover sole at the French restaurant (Jacques) twice and at the Italian one. My wife was delighted with her rack of veal at Jacques and her tenderloin at Polo Grill. Red Ginger was also a favorite with lobster pad thai and miso crusted sea bass (the best sea bass you will ever have, trust me). (3) You like great service. Both of our room attendants as well as almost all the crew were both highly efficient and very nice. (4) You enjoy little touches of luxury like white gloves afternoon tea with scones, whipped cream, clotted cream, etc. And a very talented string quartet that has a very large repertoire of classical music. (5) You do not like to pay for everything : free bottles of water, free pop, free specialty coffee and free specialty restaurants! Of course, the destination was very romantic with all ports of calls (except Nuku Hiva) very interesting, no....wonderful. Ah Bora Bora... Tips : (1) You may want to do your own air booking. It costs more to do your own booking, BUT you arrive and leave when you want. For example, we arrived three days before the cruise and left two days after. We don’t like to be rushed and it allowed us to both adjust to the time difference and check the prices of items before leaving for the islands on the cruise. (2) In French Polynesia, you want to buy pearls : the range of colors and the quality are unbelievable. Wait for Fakarava and Rangiroa in the Tuamotu Islands. This is where most pearl farms are located and the variety and price-quality ratio are unbeatable. Will we go ba k with Oceania? We have already booked our next cruise... Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
I have seen a number of negative reviews, so I felt that it was important to write a review that would detail a very different experience on Marina. First, we didn't have any major virus outbreaks on this cruise. We also had ... Read More
I have seen a number of negative reviews, so I felt that it was important to write a review that would detail a very different experience on Marina. First, we didn't have any major virus outbreaks on this cruise. We also had near perfect weather at a time when it could be the complete opposite. Embarkation: No issues at all - even for Papeete. I had some problems before the cruise identifying an area hotel that would offer an independent day room. We decided to just head to the ship, drop off our bags (which we were told that we could do), and then walk around the port area. The Oceania folks allowed us on the Marina at 9am!!! We had to stay in the lounge, but it was cool and comfortable. We were very happy to sit and relax after the travel. Our experience with Oceania's excellent service started during the embarkation process. The staff went out of the way to help us, explain the process, and provide timely updates on when we would move to the next step. Everything happened in an orderly and timely manner. We were in our cabin by 11am. Cabin: We decided to treat ourselves and picked a Vista suite - 12001. The suite was spectacular. The veranda was massive and wrapped around the starboard bow. I can't say enough about it and would highly recommend it to anyone! Our butler was Rathesh. Our stateroom attendant was Valentina. Both were above excellent. I can't say enough about their professionalism and level of service. Tendering: I selected the Vista suite mostly because of the priority tender service. If you are in a Oceania, Vista, or Owner's suite, then you don't need to get a tender ticket. You just go down and get on the next tender. For this cruise, where all but two ports are tenders, I thought that this would be invaluable. It was a nice perk. But, to be honest, you probably don't need it. The Oceania excursions were spaced out enough that independent travelers were called quite often. We always were with our tour buddies on one of the first tenders out. Communication was excellent and the tenders ran smooth. Oceania does use their lifeboats for tendering in FP, so expect it to be a bit warm with limited air flow. Food: Perfect, excellent....really can't say anything bad. We had fresh catches most days and they delivered the quality that I have come to expect from Oceania. Service was excellent throughout the specialties and Terrace. We didn't eat in the grand dining room. We also don't drink so we didn't visit any of the ship's lounges. Entertainment: Other than attending the night where the local folks came in to do a warrior dance performance, we did not attend the shows. The one we did attend was great. Fitness: I used the gym and the fitness track daily. My only feedback would be for better direction when using the jogging track. There is no instructions about what direction to walk/run and where to walk and where to pass. This lack of instruction caused some near misses around that tight turn where I, as a runner, almost ran into a walker who was walking to the left. The gym was well appointed and clean. No complaints. Ports: It's French Polynesia and we had near perfect weather. It was everything that I expected and more. We did use the excursion O-Life benefit and did find that these tours were significantly shorter than those offered by private companies. In the future, I would probably take the stateroom credit and tour 100% independently. Disembarkation: Smooth for us. We walked off without needing to be called. You can do this before 7:30. We were the only people in the tent to gather our bags, so we had about 10 folks helping us. We got the bags, walked over to the ferry building and were on the ferry to Moorea within 30 minutes of leaving our room. We had no issues with the Papeete airport. We left two days after the ship's disembarkation, so this probably helped. Summary: Amazing suite, excellent service, and unprecedented beauty at the ports. I would recommend this ship and itinerary to anyone who asked my opinion. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
What a great holiday.Tahiti was magnificent but by far the service and quality of everything on this ship made it. The food and service in all the restaurants not only the specialty was as good if not better than the best restaurants ... Read More
What a great holiday.Tahiti was magnificent but by far the service and quality of everything on this ship made it. The food and service in all the restaurants not only the specialty was as good if not better than the best restaurants in Sydney.I did not expect that.There was always plenty of activities even on sea days we had a 12 days on the ship we could have stayed for double this.We were so happy with the service although gratuity is included in your price when booking We felt we needed to add $1100 more for the great service. There was always poolside chairs available even at full capacity on the ship with 1200 guests.The entertainment was fantastic thanks to the band in horizons always fun from your mad Aussie dancer. The staff were always helpful and happy. If you want an experience to remember book with this cruise ship we will be back next year for sure. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We chose this cruise based on recommendations from others who used Oceania and its reputation as an upscale cruise line. The service was incredible. I think the fact that we were in a large suite may have helped, don't know for sure, ... Read More
We chose this cruise based on recommendations from others who used Oceania and its reputation as an upscale cruise line. The service was incredible. I think the fact that we were in a large suite may have helped, don't know for sure, but the fact that we were greeted by name the first night at the specialty restaurants was impressive. The room was great, the butler Mani was fantastic, and everyone on board was friendly and helpful. It was our first "sea trials" cruise since my wife has an issue with motion sickness, but the Marina proved to be very stable in the Pacific. Only on one night she was a bit queasy on the long trip north to the Marquesas, but was not too bad. The service was better than I have had in any hotels and the wait staff as good if not better than any restaurants. We enjoyed it very much, so much so we booked 2 more cruises with Oceania. Houskeeping even arranged our shoes back in the closet! The food was great. We preferred the specialty restaurants and the magnificently decorated Grand Dining room. They were quieter and more relaxed than the buffet and we were not in a hurry, even for breakfast. We especially liked having our breakfast in the suite. The terrace cafe was too crowded and we felt jostled while trying to get food. There was a nice variety of food there, but people were standing over tables waiting for seats at times. People would sit there grazing for hours if they had no trips ashore or the ship was at sea and occupying all the tables. On those days we went to the Grand Dining room for breakfast or lunch as it was usually empty and much more relaxed, even if there were fewer menu choices. We like the quality atmosphere rather than quantity. You are afforded that choice. The suite afforded us more access to the specialty restaurants, Polo-Steak, Toscana-Italian, Red Ginger-Oriental, and Jacques-French. All were good but Jacques was some of the best French food we have ever had, even better than in Paris IMHO. The Chef Geno was a true "Genius". Do youself a favor, try Jacques even if you do not have a reservation included. Best French food EVER in my humble opinion.! In Tahiti, the ships excursions were good, convenient and planned well, albeit expensive I think. If you are not in Tahiti for Diving or watersports, there is only so much sightseeing available. If you are budget conscious, you may do better by renting a car or taxi, but the cruise ships pretty much use up all the local transportation. Divers on board seemed to do better booking their own trips onshore. One person paid a local in Huahine to drive him around for $20 he said. Even drop off and a pick up later at the beach? Caveat emptor. The scenery is gorgeous. The ports except for 2 require tenders which require a little more planning. The tender crews were efficient and accomodated the handicapped. Not a cruise for children or even teenagers. The onshore attractions are mainly scenic which is spectacular. Some of the others (see Trip Advisor) were a bit contrived and touristy, but ok for a few hours. I.E. One pearl farm was real, the other was just a gift shop, a vanilla farm was also a gift shop. I found better prices on pearls in COSTCO and NY, so unless you want a souvenir, do some research if you want a low price. Be aware that Oceania has a 36hr cancellation policy if you change your mind on shore excursions. There were excursions for limited mobility persons. Check the info on the Oceania website. The live entertainment on board, other than the culinary classes was just average. We are spoiled being so close to NY and Broadway maybe?. The entertainers tried hard, but "missed" a few notes. This combined with the fact that they start at 9:30 and we were usually tired, limited our participation. Some folks liked it, most others so-so. I would not cruise for the entertainment. We did miss the comic, which I heard was good. We did like the piano player in the Lounge and the afternoon tea with the Chamber music was delightful. The pastries were enough to satisfy anyone's sweet tooth. The Captains cocktail party was definitely worth attending. Our room was wonderful. Having a large room, although more expensive, allowed us some quiet privacy with enough space that we did not need to use a lounge to spread out. The hot tub on the deck with the TV was over the top too. It was windy on the front of the ship, and they tied down the furniture at night, but that was not an issue for us. Other folks did have an issue with this in prior reviews, but we did not. The staff was there in the am and set it out again every day. But being in the front of the ship and watching as we entered the next island anchorage was priceless. We did get "scolded" one night by the captain because we did not draw the curtains at night while underway. We were at dinner and were late so we forgot. We had a polite but assertive phone message telling us the captain was not pleased. Our room was directly below the bridge and the glare affected their visibility. The butler dealt with it, but were definitely "scolded". The room had a small excercise room with two machines which we used once or twice, but It became more of a storage room for the cushions, chargers, etc. Would be better as a bedroom or study I think. TV was limited but had nice previews of the ports. Also, Jacques Pepin had his own cooking channel which I liked, but we were not really there for TV except to check th News on CNN and MSNBC etc. Won't find your sitcoms, but we did have a library of movies. Liked the binoculars in the drawer, but found them by accident. Understand you are in the middle of the Pacific and the Internet is not what you have at home. UNLIMITED Internet means 24 hr unlimited access, NOT UNLIMITED BANDWITH. Streaming applications are not supported, video conference, etc. You are sharing the satellite connection with 1500 other guests and crew so if you set your expectaions and enjoy the ship and scenery and save the internet for home, you will be less dissapointed. ITS SLOW,,,,, PERIOD! Our houskeeping was great. Bulgari amenities nice, fruit everyday and welcome bottle of top shelf champagne. We had 6 bottles of top shelf liquor which sufficed so we did not get the liquor plan. We opted for a glass or bottle of wine at dinner. One nice thing the sommelier told us is that we could save the unconsumed bottle for the next night at a different restaurant. They vacumn sealed it and brought it the next night. This was good because my wife does not like red and I did not want to drink or waste the rest of a bottle, especially an expensive one. Also liked the wine tasting of the "old school" wines. They had a great selection, including Tignanello one of my favotites. Don't always see some top end wines at a tasting. The beverage director really knew his wines and regions. A nice upscale break from more local or touristy winery tastings. The wine markup was not outrageous for the higher end wines. A bottle of Tignanello, although pricey and retails for $90, was $140 on board for a reference. You can also get a decent chard in the $45 range. Boarding was fine. Transfers for our 8:30 am flight great. Although a suite is expensive, when you add up the perks, it helps defer some of that cost. Early boarding, more excursions, more specialty dining, liquor, butler service, really added to the experience. A splurge, yes, but when spending your kids inheritance, who cares! LOL The VISTA suite has all the perks, more than enough room, and all of the perks of the owners suite. Usually sells out first. Air Tahiti is not bad, but if you are tall its tight in coach. Sit on the outside. No Economy plus seating. Try for the newer plane. First class is good, but very very expensive. In summary, wonderful trip, great service, great food, great room, average entertainment for my taste.. Will go again, booked 2 more cruises. "Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than those you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from safe harbor. Catch the wind in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain Read Less
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