7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We booked this cruise as it included four countries we previously hadn't visited: Cuba, Belize, Honduras, and Guatemala. The timing worked well to have some family join us on this 7-night cruise. I would note that we are Oceania ... Read More
We booked this cruise as it included four countries we previously hadn't visited: Cuba, Belize, Honduras, and Guatemala. The timing worked well to have some family join us on this 7-night cruise. I would note that we are Oceania loyalists based on the cuisine, quality of the ships and their excellent crews, as well as the vast assortment of 7-12 day cruises on offer work for our busy lifestyle (in our early 40s and both working full-time). We're always being asked about being the youngest passengers on the ship (we are both fit and look like we're in our 30s), and our response is always "what's not to like, great vacations with interesting fellow passengers". One more disclosure - I'm Gluten Free (GF) and LOVE the way that Oceania tends to my dietary restrictions. Taking the stress out of eating all over the world is a game changer for me knowing that I can always have a safe breakfast and dinner in every port. This was our second time on Riviera and we really love this ship. The size works for us with the additional restaurants, cooking school, larger Baristas with great views, and larger cabins across all categories. We've previously sailed on Insignia and enjoyed the intimacy of the smaller ship but the PH cabins on these R-class ships are the size of standard veranda cabins on Riviera/Marina. The PH cabins on Riviera are as nice as our PH on a previous Regent SS Voyager cruise. On this cruise we took a cooking class "If it Swims" and really loved the class and the instructor - Stephanie Hersh. Stephanie was the long-time assistant of Julia Child and had great stories and a depth of knowledge that was greatly appreciated by everyone on the ship who interacted with her. We enjoyed the "La Cuisine Bourgeois" in La Reserve with wine pairings. We love the La Reserve team and the effort they put into these dinners. We also stopped in for a wine flight and they had excellent nibbles to go with that made it worth the supplement. The one thing we would do differently on the next Riviera/Marina cruise would be to go back to a PH on Deck 11. Being one of only 4 PHs on Deck 7 (all aft with huge balconies which is why we chose our cabin for this warm weather cruise) we felt a bit neglected as we rarely saw our butler. We also note that while it's not a written policy, passengers in suites tend to be seated at better tables in the restaurants. We noticed that unlike our previous cruises we found ourselves with less prime tables when giving a cabin number starting with '7' than '11' at the host stands. When I read Oceania reviews it seems like a lot of folks complain about NCL's ownership economizing on-board. I would note that it does seem like there's a bit less staffing in the MDR and around the pool, but we haven't noticed any other negative changes. We haven't noticed any cost-cutting in the food or prices for the wines by the bottle which are the key for us. I do wonder if Oceania will feel the need to match the included beer/wine with meals offered by Azamara and Viking as these main competitors have Oceania beat in this category. 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
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
The itinerary was the main attraction, plus decent reviews. I'll start with the positives. Embarkation was easy. Service in all areas was really good. End of positives. The ship rode poorly, even in fairly calm seas. ... Read More
The itinerary was the main attraction, plus decent reviews. I'll start with the positives. Embarkation was easy. Service in all areas was really good. End of positives. The ship rode poorly, even in fairly calm seas. Constant bumping noises & feelings for the first 2 days , for no apparent reason. Stateroom ( Concierge Veranda ) - lots of creaking noises - had to jam pieces of cardboard in several areas so we could sleep. Also way too small for the price. Veranda tiny. Cruise director - loud PA announcements as early as 7:45 - could not possibly sleep late if you so desired. Unnecessary announcements several times a day - just repeating the info in the daily newsletter. Food - sometimes very good, but quite a few times inedible. This was true in all dining rooms. Food mostly bland, possibly catering to the passenger makeup - average age was well into the eighties. Lunch buffet pathetic. If you wanted a drink pre-dinner, good luck finding a seat. Extremely limited. Shows - mediocre. One comedian was really good, all other shows no better than the lower priced ships. No way we would ever sail with Oceania again. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
The oceania riviera desperately needs dry dock updates & upgrades. The same carpet stains from last year's cruise were still there a year later. The carpet is in horrible condition and the wood on the ship needs touch-up's. ... Read More
The oceania riviera desperately needs dry dock updates & upgrades. The same carpet stains from last year's cruise were still there a year later. The carpet is in horrible condition and the wood on the ship needs touch-up's. The ship was scheduled to be in dry dock during 2018, but oceania elected to defer this update until april of 2019, and that poor decision is reflected in the environment on the ship. The internet connection speed on the oceania riviera was horribly slow. Oceania opened up "free internet to all" but should have upgraded their system before doing so to handle that bigger demand. We have been on other larger ships that have blazing fast internet speeds, so oceania needs to get their act together on this immediately. We hear the oceania riviera will be in dry dock in april of 2019, so this needs to be a priority upgrade. We were on the oceania riviera during christmas of 2018 and new years, when all of the bowl games were being played. The ship does not have espn and most other major network tv coverage. It's 2019 oceania - please get with the times and get major network coverage that your competition already has!! One port of call was roseau, dominica. This should not be a port of call due to massive devistation from a hurricane that happened over a year ago. Roads had been washed away during the hurricane and flooding, and two way traffic was trying to navigate a single lane on mountainous roads that were way too dangerous to travel on. There were washed-away sections of the road that had jagged edges from fast flowing water. There was a very dangerous mountainous road that could have given way and caused a shuttle van to fall several hundred feet, which would have killed everyone onboard the shuttle. This is an accident waiting to happen so oceania should remove dominica as a port of call. Much of the fitness equipment was old and in poor condition. The oceania riviera ship's staff tries hard to please, but we had a bad experience with the shore excursion staff, which has poor management and untrained staff. Since we cruised on this ship one year earlier, there was an overall downward shift in the quality of the ship's condition and the attitude/training of the staff. The oceania riviera ship has a lot of potential, but its future success depends heavily on oceania making good management decisions and the right update/upgrade decisions for the scheduled april 2019 dry-dock. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Let me start with a few positive comments that made me glad I was able to have this experience at least once. The finest thing about the trip was the bed. It was gloriously comfortable. Magical. I move a lot when I sleep and the bed seemed ... Read More
Let me start with a few positive comments that made me glad I was able to have this experience at least once. The finest thing about the trip was the bed. It was gloriously comfortable. Magical. I move a lot when I sleep and the bed seemed to make me comfortable no matter how much a moved around. Not too hard and not too soft. Cool. Like a dream cloud with support. Amazing. Fine linens, bedding. Pillows were divine. Still, you can buy the bedding and stay home. I'll explain. The ship is beautiful. Gorgeous lobby, etc. Of course, one doesn't dine or stay in the lobby. It was just nice to look at and pass through. Now for the not so nice stuff. First, the ship claims to have internet service which is technically true. In practice you will have spotty and poor service about 60 percent of the time. You will be completely without service the remainder of that time. The connection is very slow and not intended for viewing videos nor for working much with photographs. Stick to an email or message in text. And if you need to work on the cruise, this isn't really going to work for you. We travelled with the CEO of a company, and he had to wait until we were on an island or city on land to send and receive proper messages. That frequently meant a one or two day delay, and had to be accomplished with internet service not provided by the cruise line. If you are a millenial, you'd say there was no internet service at all. One kind lady told me that I was on vacation, and said that being connected to the outside world shouldn't be a priority. I suppose she's right, but I still believe in full disclosure. You will get fired from your job if you think you can work on the ship in a timely manner or are in IT and had planned on a work/play vacation. I rate the internet service and lack of disclosures at a 2 out of 10. Even the crappy service requires a long list of signing in and out and other manipulations that the average techy will find extremely cumbersome. The real killer, though, was the sales gig. There are many opportunities to spend money, but again they fail in lack of disclosure. If you bank with cash and a debit card, you'll be harassed for the entire trip. They prefer a credit card (I don't use "credit" cards) and they will pin notes to your door and ring your room at all hours of the day and night in a horrific collection attempt while you're still very much stuck on their freaking ship. They will tell all your other family members or persons traveling with you what you have or have not paid for, and which cards or cash you have used to pay or not pay for anything and everything. They will treat you like a thief and a threat. They will be unhelpful and impolite in their fervor for collection efforts. By the time I was ready to leave the boat, I had to borrow $300 dollars from a family member to pay off the various gratuities and undisclosed other charges while they treated me like a serial murderer on a cruise that cost 10K between one brother and myself. Why? When they book your airfare (assuming you get the airfare is in the overall package) they will book you on the cheapest worst most indirect flight on the wrong seat. They had me flying for two days from LAX to Miami in a middle seat in the back of the plane. By the time we paid for checked bags, additional fees for the seat, and a nonstop flight I was out another $500 just one the plane ticket fiasco. I still had to fly on an overnight flight, and spend 8 hours awaiting to "check in" after a night of no sleep on the plane. Yes, they treated to a breakfast at a local hotel. That helped for an hour of that time. I'm surprised the hotel they took us to during the daytime didn't have us all arrested for vagrancy. We all looked like half asleep zombies as we walked around the lobby in circles for six more hours. They should also disclose to passengers that EVEN IF YOU HAVE AN INTERNATIONAL DIALING PLAN, that you will still charge up your phone bill if you dare make an actual phone call during your trip. Those calls are not originating in the US and as such are $6 a minute....regardless of your "international dialing plan." Two, one half hour calls to my bank in France cost me $300 on my phone bill. If you like to count, you can see that I'm out over $800 bucks on plane charges and phone calls, without counting the $300 I took on board in cash for penny cash needs. And then the $300 I borrowed to get out of there alive before they had me sleeping in the halls or on a life boat which I offered to them as an alternative if they couldn't wait for me to get the cash limit on my DEBIT card raised for them and their tender CREDIT CARD preference on board.They really need to work on disclosing realistic cash needs on board PRIOR to boarding. This almost ruined my trip and caused petty fights among family members at Christmas time. I finally went down to the lovely Lalique filled lobby and chewed out the reception desk over their unscrupulous collection efforts on board, their skanky and undisclosed poor internet service, the missed ports (due to rain), and the extra charges and they offered me a bottle of wine... the off brand stuff. I'm giving the cruise an average rating because it was a horrible experience on board unless you were asleep or on land. The ship is a luxury ship and the 10K they collected up front on the room still had them acting like they would die for the last $300 bucks. I told them to stop the calls and notes, and to feel free to call the police if I tried to jump ship without paying. I guess all that money was for the bed. I can get that at Macy's without the pressure of a harassed existence on a ship with no internet that can't drop anchor when it rains. Had they acted better I'd have raised this review to a 4 out of 5 stars. As it is, I'm going to be nice and not lash out with a 1 star rating. Average.3 stars. That's fair. Take Oceania at least once. I'll say that. Oh, I met some nice people on board. The barista was gorgeous too. The restaurants are good and the service impeccable there. The entertainment was also good. The excursions were a cut above if expensive. Better ferries, better buses, etc. They do have a wine list that lets you know just how cheap the complimentary bottle was. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Manly booked this for the itinerary. It was a 12 night - Venice to Barcelona . 11-1-18 to 11-13-18. Excursions were not as described. The stops listed were not accurate. One location did not have the handicrafts village as highlighted. ... Read More
Manly booked this for the itinerary. It was a 12 night - Venice to Barcelona . 11-1-18 to 11-13-18. Excursions were not as described. The stops listed were not accurate. One location did not have the handicrafts village as highlighted. Another town was completely closed on the day we were there. Nothing to see at all! They return you back to the ship 2-3 hours before ship left port. Not enough time given to sights that were available. Big waste of money. The destination desk personnel were useless and could care less. This Cruise line is over rated. Horrible entertainment. It doesn't exist. First time on Oceania and probably the last. Expected more from a so called upper class sailing. This is also not recommended for any one who is handicap. All ports of call and the excursions we were part of would be a real challenge for those who are handicap. The food was very good compared to other Cruise lines. But do NOT touch anything or the food Nazis will repremand you. Sparkling water and soft drinks are all included. As for cocktails, way over priced. Friends were charged $56.00 for 2 drinks in the main dining room because he made the mortal mistake of ordering a " double" rum and coke. He only made that mistake once. The staff were very good and attended to all your needs in the beginning of this itinerary, but slowly declined as the days passed. It seemed as though many have had enough and were anxious to go home, as this was their final voyage for the season. As previously noted the worst was the " Destinations" personnel. They could care less about anything. For your O Life choice, do yourself a favor and use the ship board credit. The free excursions are NOT the way to go! Go with an outside company or explore on your own. It should also be noted that this was not a voyage for families with young children. They would be extremely board due to the lack of entertainment and the ports of call. It's catered towards the adults. For the fees charged on this line, we expected a little more. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
I’m used to have always gone on sea goddess back in its day and crystal, so unfortunately my standards are really high. This cruise ship made me hate cruising forever. I don’t understand the hype. Old cruise ship trying to squeeze ... Read More
I’m used to have always gone on sea goddess back in its day and crystal, so unfortunately my standards are really high. This cruise ship made me hate cruising forever. I don’t understand the hype. Old cruise ship trying to squeeze out every penny from you by investing the minimum. The food is awful at the main dining room. My sons school cafeteria lunches are superior. The specialty restaurants are ok. Nothing to write home about. That being said it’s oretty disappointing that a “foodie” cruise ship has such substandard food. I. Would say the two most decent restaurants there are the French and Italian restaurants. The buffet is much better than the main dining room. Avoid it at all costs! Let’s now focus on the cruise ship. We had a PH suite with a butler. The room was tiny and they custom made the furniture even smaller so the room looks bigger. The Verandah unfortunately has ubstricted views... the hallways smells of sewage. This was the worst part of all for me. The toilets started overflowing and there were leaks all over the suites. Our butler was nice, unfortunately I can’t say the same for my mom’s. The only thing that made everything special for my son was the housekeeping crew. They were so nice and I wish they would be treated better. Thank you for putting me off cruise ships for life! Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We were excited to travel on Oceania with our family of 5 and booked 2 staterooms for my husband, myself and our three sons in a separate stateroom. We were told by our Oceania travel representative and also confirmed with Oceania's ... Read More
We were excited to travel on Oceania with our family of 5 and booked 2 staterooms for my husband, myself and our three sons in a separate stateroom. We were told by our Oceania travel representative and also confirmed with Oceania's website that there would be a Teen Club on board, a game room and a basketball / sports court on the top of the ship of which there was none of the above mentioned things for our teenage sons. There was NOTHING for my boys to do on this ship. The only game room is a casino and you must be 21 to enter. The sports court was in fact, miniature tennis (elderly sport) or shuffleboard. The food was okay at best. Red Ginger and Jacques were both very good and Toscana was above average. Polo Grill was terrible, truly terrible. The Grand Dining room was sub par as well and the Terrace Restaurant was a slightly upscale version of a Luby's cafeteria. The shore excursions were okay but one at Alicante, Spain to a beach at El Campello was terrible. We were literally dropped off a bus (after circling the block a few times) and pointed to the beach and then the bus drove away. It was supposed to be a resort beach but it was just a beach, no chairs, no umbrellas, no water sports, no bars, no nothing. We called to be picked back up and two hours later, we finally made it to a real beach to explore on our own. When we asked for a refund, we were offered 50% back only and told it was an outside company that does the excursions separate from Oceania and that is all they would refund. Unacceptable! The entertainment was all targeted to the over 75 crowd and was frankly bad. During the cruise one night, our stateroom toilet began to flush on its own and water began to pour over the top. I didn't see the drain in the floor so I was very concerned that water would begin to flow on to the carpet in our stateroom. I called the front desk and was told someone would come and take a look. After three minutes and no one coming, I called back as I was worried about the water and the receptionist literally scolded me and said "YOU CALLED ME 3 MINUTES AGO!". She was very rude. After the amount of money we spent, it was a sorely disappointing experience. I would not recommend Oceania nor will I ever travel with them again. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This was our fourth Oceania cruise and it was the type and quality of a cruise we have come to expect from this cruise line. We can say that we experienced excellent service and top notch quality of food at several of the restaurants on ... Read More
This was our fourth Oceania cruise and it was the type and quality of a cruise we have come to expect from this cruise line. We can say that we experienced excellent service and top notch quality of food at several of the restaurants on board the Riviera. My wife has special medical dietary requirements and all of the food was prepared accordingly and service staff were especially helpful and accommodating with her dietary requirements. The entire ship was very clean and seemed well maintained. We experienced a problem with the plumbing system in our cabin and the maintenance staff stuck with the problem until it was corrected. Several of the the food and beverage staff who waited on us displayed a fun sense of banter with us and it was a pleasure to see them at different venues. Embarkation was perhaps the easiest we have ever experienced. The one difficulty that we experienced was with a so called cruise "Ambassador". We booked a future cruise through her on board this ship. After a day or two later we realized that we had a tight travel insurance deadline with this booking so we returned to her to ask her a few questions about dropping one of the "extras" that we included with our booking. She had told us originally that we could drop the extras "at any time". The "ambassador" suddenly became very defensive and displayed a rather angry demeanor. She grabbed her stack of booking documents and literally tore through them while complaining that we were making her go through extra work. When she found our booking papers she complained that 99% of her customers do not ask what we were asking and then she shifted her line to state that she didn't want us to worry about this issue and spoil our vacation worrying, and that when we returned home our TA could do what we were asking her to do. We tried to explain to her that we were not worried until this very moment as we were concerned about her demeanor and Oceania's apparent disregard for customer booking follow-up. I personally got up to leave her office because the tension between the "ambassador" and I was reaching a boiling point. As we left she smilingly stated that we should just continue to our good times and forget all about our worries. Based upon this experience with one of Oceania's so called "ambassadors" we might not do any more business with these people. We kept the cruise we had booked on board and our TA did drop one of the extras as the future cruise itinerary and the good service we have enjoyed from all of our previous Oceania cruises are factors that we want to look forward to. We just don't want to experience such boiler room tactics again on Oceania or any other cruise line. This experience is what dropped my "On-board Experience" rating from "very good" or even "excellent" down to "average". Also, although I have previously described the service of the rest of the staff as very positive the behavior of this one staff member was so egregious it was enough to change my service opinion to "very good". And Oceania has the gall to call these people "ambassadors". Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We signed up for the cruise the end of March because of a great sale. We were a group of 4 couples; 2 veteran, 2 novice. The two new couples to cruising on Oceania had their expectations far exceeded ( we all took the O Life option ). The ... Read More
We signed up for the cruise the end of March because of a great sale. We were a group of 4 couples; 2 veteran, 2 novice. The two new couples to cruising on Oceania had their expectations far exceeded ( we all took the O Life option ). The two veteran had our expectations met. All had a great time in spite of one of the novice couples being pick pocketed in Barcelona upon arrival at the airport ( cash and passports ). The crew has always cheerful and helpful. Don't forget that the dining is the best on the seven seas ( although we were somewhat disappointed in Red Ginger this time ). Great cruise, great value! We shared wine brought in from the daily port of call with the group in one of our cabins , before heading out to our dinner venue of the evening. Between the four couples we must have brought on a total of 20 bottles. From what I understand, this is the only cruise line that will tolerate this. We really did cruise our way. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
This cruise was selected for several reasons. For one, the reputation of Oceania for serving the best food on the ocean was an attraction. Also, the itenery ... we have been to Greece and Italy several times, but those traveling with us ... Read More
This cruise was selected for several reasons. For one, the reputation of Oceania for serving the best food on the ocean was an attraction. Also, the itenery ... we have been to Greece and Italy several times, but those traveling with us had not been to the Mediterranean. It also helped that the price was right! "The Good" ... The public space is lovely. Well cared for and immaculately clean. The staff is the most attentive that I have ever experienced on land or sea. The specialty restaurants were wonderful and diverse. It was refreshing to see that the policy of not allowing passengers to place a book and a hat on a pool lounge chair at 6:00 AM and then return to claim their space after lunch ... is being enforced. All cruise lines talk abut it, but do not have the gonads to enforce it. "The Bad" ... the main dining room was just average at best. It would take a good 15 minutes to be approached by staff. This happened 4 nights in a row. Once they started your table, the service was excellent. The food was dry and lacked flavor. We would have opted out of the main dining room if we had been allowed to dine in the specialty restaurants ... but you are only allowed to dine once in each specialty restaurants per leg of the cruise. If you were less than 45 minutes arriving to board the ship prior to the mandatory departure time, the tent, cold towels, and water were gone. This is not the biggest of deals if the ship is docked but if it is tendered ... good luck location the correct tender. We were forced to have The Princess Cruise Line staff help us find our tender in Santorini ... located in a totally different place than the AM landing point. If you have an independent excursion the staff will not pass out tender passes as you arrive. They wait until all of the cruise line tours are off and then announce that the independent passes will now be passed out ... so there is a major fight to claw yourself up the aisle hoping to secure a pass that allows you to only be 45 minutes late getting off the ship. "The Ugly" Our cabin ... I can only speak for our cabin, and I will not give you the cabin number since the stewardess that maintained this room was not responsible for the lack of preventive maintenance in this cabin. My only complaint with her was that she never replaced the shampoo with 2 days left on the cruise and our balcony glass was never cleaned. We were located at the rear of the ship and the vibration was unacceptable. The cables connecting the TV and the VCR were hanging out all over the place. The knob for the shower rain head kept falling off ... and being a round knob, try turning it on or off whit soap on your hands. The carpet in the room was filthy. The sheers had shrunk and were too narrow to close all of the way. The same issue was a problem with the blackout curtains, thus at 5:30 AM you were hit in the face with shards of sunlight. There were signs of the previous guest in the desk drawer. 2 postcards from a hotel and a Marriott desk pen. I worked for Hilton for 20 plus years and this alone would fail a room. Would I travel with Oceania again? Well, if the deal is good and the itenery is desirable ... you bet! But I do think that Oceania needs to save a bit of money and stop sending me cruise literature ... we something every day from them! Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We just concluded Oceania's cruise from Venice to Athens on the "Riviera". Among over 1,000 passengers were only 5-6 young ones; the rest were senior citizens in their '70s. There were no poolside (or anywhere else) ... Read More
We just concluded Oceania's cruise from Venice to Athens on the "Riviera". Among over 1,000 passengers were only 5-6 young ones; the rest were senior citizens in their '70s. There were no poolside (or anywhere else) activities, nothing happening after dinner other than listening to old folks talking about the menu or their retirement. Awfully dull. The menu at the ship's restaurants was fine if eating is a passenger's sole reason for going on a cruise. The captain's (Captain Flokos) judgment was poor; upon arrival in Mykonos where the winds were strong in the morning (a very common occurrence in Mykonos), he simply elected to skip that port altogether and, instead, forced all passengers to 24 hours of ship confinement running around the sea/ Instead, he could have: a) Waited for the wind to die down (the local summer wind, called meltemi always dies down in the evening) and let the passengers out for a pleasant evening in Mykonos), or b) Gone to another nearby port (Athens was only three hours away,. and so were mahy other Greek islands), or c) Proceeded to the next scheduled stop in Santorinini for an extra day there. d) Have made arrangements ahead of time for the ship to have landed on the pier for direct access to the island without needing boats to transport passengers between the ship and land. "Excursions" at each of the ports visited were ill-conceived because passengers were required to be back on the ship by 3-4 pm, even though the next port of call was, in most cases, only 2-3 hours away and could be easily reached during the night. There was no good reason to force passengers to leave each Greek island visited at 3pm. Instead, passengers could have had the pleasure of spending much more time to each port of call (Santorini, Dubrovnik, etc.). Oceania company deserves all the blame for such poor planning. The ship's customer service staff were uniformly aloof and rude and self-righteous, as if they were doing passengers a favor by addressing passengers' concerns. They forgot that, in the final analysis, it was the passengers who paid their salaries. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
This was our first Oceania cruise and the Riviera certainly met our expectations. Embarkation was smooth and quick. Our cabin was ready shortly after we boarded and the luggage appeared right afterwards. Dining was superb. The ... Read More
This was our first Oceania cruise and the Riviera certainly met our expectations. Embarkation was smooth and quick. Our cabin was ready shortly after we boarded and the luggage appeared right afterwards. Dining was superb. The Terrace Cafe buffet bettered other ships' main dining room. We tried each of the specialty restaurants and the Grand Dining Room (twice). Every offering was excellent. We especially enjoyed Toscana, which some have denigrated -- sorry we couldn't get a return visit the last night but the only available time was a little late for a last night with packing. Afternoon tea was amazing! We took only five ship excursions. A sixth was cancelled because the G7 summit closed Taorima. Four were excellent; the other just good. We toured on our own in Messina, Rome and Amalfi with Italian operators. Every one of those worked out perfectly. They were definitely cheaper than ship excursions. Entertainment was just OK. About what you can expect on a smaller ship like Riviera. And we enjoyed the enrichment lectures. The only disappointment was the internet access. Our suite included "unlimited" WiFi for one device. It was awful. From Thursday to the end of the cruise Sunday morning, I never got mail. We had paid Verizon a ransom to use our cellphones and relied instead on those in ports. Also found free WiFi at cafes in Monte Carlo and Barcelona. If I'd paid for WiFi, I would have asked for a refund. Other than the nonexistent WiFi, it was the best cruise experience we've had. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
I would like to start this review by thanking a great couple I met, on the NCL Jade in April 2014, who first introduced me to this great resource “Cruise Critic”. Their names are Catherine and Michael from Edinburg, Pennsylvania. My ... Read More
I would like to start this review by thanking a great couple I met, on the NCL Jade in April 2014, who first introduced me to this great resource “Cruise Critic”. Their names are Catherine and Michael from Edinburg, Pennsylvania. My best wishes to them both! She practiced nursing and he was somehow linked with the local university. ** The Riviera is a mid-sized, beautiful ship. It has 15 decks and holds 1250 passengers, it is an easy ship to get very quickly familiar with it, in general it feels uncrowded (even being full) except when passengers are back from touring (as happens in any other cruise ship) especially if you want to have lunch at the Terrace Café or the Waves Grill. **Stateroom was of good size and in good shape with the exception of the carpet which needed a deep cleaning or replacement. Comfortable and well-appointed bathroom but with a rather small shower stall. Cabin lighting in general is not up to standard, especially when looking at yourself in any of the mirrors. The attendant, Gede and his un-named assistant were very prompt, respectful and reliable; it was also very nice not having them around your door expecting for you to leave to make up the room! - as it happens on other cruise lines. Storage was acceptable though the closet was too narrow having problems closing the doors because they got caught up on my jackets. Also the space between closet and bed was a bit tight. ** The Library (Deck #14), was exceptional. It is divided into several small rooms according topic of book and furnished each with comfortable arm-chairs and a low table at center. Very private and very peaceful indeed. Those rooms open onto big windows with great views and the location close by Baristas is perfect because there you can grab great cappuccinos, small biscotti or a piece of cake, pick up a book and enjoy the whole experience. If you like a good cup of coffee, Baristas on deck # 14 is the place and not to be missed! ** The Concierge lounge was too small considering the amount of people using it – they went in, sat down and spent a very long time there, many talking nonstop. Granted that there you can make your own preferred coffee, have some eats offered, read newspapers or use the computer but the TV is on blasting all the news during the cruise that you are trying to avoid, so the possible peacefulness of the Library doesn’t exist here. The only advantage is that if your cabin is on deck # 9, is within easy reach. Very close to the Concierge Lounge you will find the Launderette Room, with top notch washer & dryer and there is a fee for the use for both of them of $2US; there is also a steam Iron and Ironing board (free). It is a very roomy place and impeccably kept. **The Canyon Ranch SpaClub located forward on deck 14, has all the amenities and staff to make it a must see and used place; the rooms for Pilates, stretching, etc. that are supervised by an Instructor are ample with floor to ceiling windows with great views The Gymnasium has top of the line equipment and like all of this area with great views. There you can find all the things you need to enjoy working out like bottles of water, Gatorade, juices, etc. plus large number of spongy towels. Excellent place. **Officers, staff and crew in general were excellent, always ready to help and make things better. Of course there were a couple of exceptions which on this cruise involved the service staff of the Grand Dining Room, coincidentally both at lunch time but different days, two waitresses, though efficient, were quite rude and were doing their jobs with a total lack of good will. The strange thing is that in the Terrace Café or the Waves Grill, the workers were always extremely busy but regardless of all that, ALL OF THEM were an example of friendliness, warmth and good will! I have to say that in general the staff coming from the Philippines, Indonesia, Russia, Ukraine, Croatia, Serbia and Europe in general, behaved in the same appropriate way and it was a pleasure to have them around because you knew they were on the ready to assist you in any way. **Unfortunately the Latin American staff, though efficient, completely lack what the mentioned nationalities have a plenty. Non-existent at all, they were cold, curt with not even a hint of a smile. Not a welcoming bunch. **The passengers though the majority were of “certain age”, was very nice to see they were in very good shape in comparison to the many out of shape you find on other cruises. In general they kept to themselves but were nice, social and civilized anyway. Of course there were others that for sure were the opposite and indeed ignored by us. **Food wise, there is nothing to complain about, to the contrary! Overall quality, variety of menu and presentation of cuisine were all excellent. We experienced all of the dining venues on the ship and they were all extremely enjoyable. There were one or two misses but overall the food was superb. Very difficult to choose which one is the winner but Red Ginger gets the prize for this cruise on Riviera. It was a pleasure to have dinner at Toscana and be able to speak Italian! For the first time ever (more than 30 cruises already) I was able to speak the language of the theme restaurant. Almost the same I could say when having dinner at Jacques, though with only three of them from France (Richard from Lille was one of them - outstanding!). In general all these restaurants are well designed with good taste and environment – especially so was the stunning Grand Restaurant – service with first class china and silver but the crystal was quite plain – I was quite surprised that not one of the venues had cut glass crystal. Although each setting had a cluster of at least 4 different sizes, being of so simple design they looked like an unmatched set. On embarkation day, if you don’t like big crowds and fighting for a table do not eat in the Terrace Café or the Waves Grill instead head to the Grand Restaurant and you will be introduced to the Riviera in the way it should be, with amazement and joy. **Room Service was impeccable, always on time and much attention to details, they even offered to set the table for us! And I am not talking about a butler here, okay? Choices are quite ample for breakfast as much it was for dinner. Concierge and Suites have the option of a hot breakfast. **Some warnings; all the specialty restaurants can be reserved prior to boarding the ship but each category of cabin has a timetable when you can do it (find out accordingly), so if you like to have a table just for two, I recommend to do it the moment your allowed to, for this cruise they started taking reservations on line just after midnight of allotted booking day. **Regarding drinks packages; Oceania offer free three options for you to choose from, one of them the ‘House beverage package”, this includes wine, beer and soft drinks served at dinner & lunch ONLY, meaning that whenever you would like to have any of these items outside of those times, you have to pay for it and in general they are not cheap. So it might pay to get their package at the higher level that costs 59.95US per day per person (you can do this on embarkation day at the Reception Desk area) so you can have wherever you like including alcoholic beverages any time any place. Almost every night, through room service, we ordered premium brands of double scotches with ice on the side, at no cost except the occasional tip for the room service delivery. Forewarned is forearmed! **The afternoon tea (High Tea?) in The Horizons (Deck#15) was clearly disorganized and the service did not match the fare offered. All servers were impressively dressed but do not have the appropriate manners (demeanor) to pull it all off. In a way it was a disappointment after reading so many good revues on C.C.; the highlight was the Ocean String Quartet, four beautiful young girls playing magnificently to a room full of noisy people more absorbed with the food they were eating than paying attention to their performance. **The entertainment shows I’ve seen with the exception of one (That’s Entertainment; the Marilyn Monroe sketch was pathetic) were up to standard, namely Colleen Williamson (singer) and Roman & Svetlana (ballroom dancers) the two most outstanding acts. Both were really super stars! I already mentioned the Ocean String Quartet and how excellent they were at the High Tea service but at night the group seemed out of place in the Grand Bar and even more so on one occasion when all four wore white ghost-like gowns. **A few comments about the embarkation process. We were first in line in the Concierge cue right beside the Suites cue which was empty and were told we were next to go to the registration desk and all of a sudden a Suites passenger came rushing up. The girl in charge stopped us and said they must go first. This happened 3 times without explanation every time and each time it was very upsetting. What Oceania should do to avoid this kind of insulting experience is to have specific desks for the Suites and Concierge class, sort of like airports do for the Business class check in. If no Business class passengers are waiting then the desk is available for general check in. **Port lectures were very informative and useful. The shore excursions were a mixed bag. The one taken in Tortola (Virgin Gorda &The Baths) was overpriced at $99 and should have been less than $60. There was only one tour guide for about 100 people and the refreshment at the end was about 4 oz. of miserable punch with nowhere to sit down. The transport to the site was by a very long boat ride and then a cramped safari bus ride up the hill. This was followed by an extremely not only strenuous (we were warned ahead of time about that) but also very dangerous long trek downhill to the beach over slippery rocks, very high and low steps (no railings anywhere) with surfaces on angles and covered at times with slippery sand. Should anyone have lost their balance the probability of cuts and head trauma was very high. Luckily we heard of no one falling. The tour guide was a complete zero and we decided not to continue on to the other serviced beach and returned on our own well before the appointed time. Later we learnt that there was another path to the beach and that’s why we did not see anyone going up the way we came because they took the easy walk back. Had the tour Guide informed us of this and other key info we would have skipped the Devil’s Beach and gone only to the serviced beach etc. **Oceania staff assistance finding the shuttle to downtown Barbados would have avoided us the unpleasant pestering of the numerous taxis drivers at the port – each and every one trying to get us to go with them. Furthermore, once we found the special shuttle that was it, no return trip was available (we learnt that after waiting by the department store until one of the clerks told us we better look for a taxi). All this uncertainty and hassle was not appreciated and takes away from the pleasure of discovering a new tropical city centre and is certainly not what passengers expect from the Oceania experience. This comment was corroborated by many other passengers. **As you can see nothing is perfect and it is impossible to satisfy everyone but without a doubt Oceania Riviera is very, very close to perfection! It was a pity that St. Barts was bypassed due to a medical emergency. **The artwork throughout was like walking through a museum and the Murano Glass behind the Reception Desk a real masterpiece! Needless to say, if I have the chance, without thinking twice I will cruise with Oceania again! Thank you all for so much beauty!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
We chose Oceania for the timing of the cruise. As we sailed and completed our cruise on 12/22 just before Christmas. First the ship: The Riviera is a beautiful ship. Well appointed public areas. Nice pool deck and fitness center. If you ... Read More
We chose Oceania for the timing of the cruise. As we sailed and completed our cruise on 12/22 just before Christmas. First the ship: The Riviera is a beautiful ship. Well appointed public areas. Nice pool deck and fitness center. If you want a rock climbing wall or are traveling with kids, Oceania is not for you. Cabin: We had a veranda cabin. We found it well appointed and spacious, with probably one of the biggest bathrooms we have ever had at sea. The room at 28 sq/ft is as large as a mini suite on many other lines. Restaurants: The four speciality restaurants were outstanding, enough said there. The main dining room was very good, no complaints. Entertainment is definitely the weak spot on the Riviera. The string quartet and piano player are fine. The larger entertainment was marginal at best. Casino is big enough for most and was generally busy. The only complaint I have with Oceania was on our bill. We had $600 ship credit that we had to use. We took $200 cash and were told that this was not part of ship credit...OK fine, I understood that. A day before the end of cruise we got a preliminary bill and it showed the $200 being deducted from our on board credit. We inquired and were told our bill was accurate. We even asked twice. At the end of the cruise our bill was $210 and they said we had an unused credit of $157. I feel that there was a bit of "bait and switch here". We'll be smarter next time. All in all highly recommend. At 57 I was one of the younger people on the ship, so know that in advance, it is definitely an older cruise line. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
We loved everything about this cruise except for the wifi. So let me get that out of the way first. Oceania, you MUST upgrade the wifi. Really a shame that you are charging for this, and it doesn't work about half the time. A real ... Read More
We loved everything about this cruise except for the wifi. So let me get that out of the way first. Oceania, you MUST upgrade the wifi. Really a shame that you are charging for this, and it doesn't work about half the time. A real rip off, and not up to your standards. MANY guests were complaining about it, remarking it was the only negative on an otherwise perfect trip. It was particularly important to us because we were traveling with teens, and needed it to communicate locations on board. We were unable to do so. Whew, got that out of the way! Everything else was wonderful. Service is terrific. The servers are friendly and attentive. The meals are very good. Of particular note is Toscana and Red Ginger -- spectacular meals. The ship is beautiful and clean and maintained perfectly. We had a penthouse suite, and really enjoyed the extra space and the butler. We used two Oceania excursions. One was great, and the other was pretty bad. They probably need to improve the quality of their tour guides. But we loved almost everything, and e will definitely travel on Oceania again! Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
We have sailed on Oceania 5 times on their smaller ships and loved them. We were a bit nervous about the bigger ships, thinking it might lose that personal touch, but it was great. Even with 1000 people, nothing ever seemed crowded. The ... Read More
We have sailed on Oceania 5 times on their smaller ships and loved them. We were a bit nervous about the bigger ships, thinking it might lose that personal touch, but it was great. Even with 1000 people, nothing ever seemed crowded. The staff was outstanding and the food was wonderful. Oceania always has slightly more imaginative itineraries than the other luxury lines, like Seabourn and Silversea. All of the specialty restaurants were excellent and Jacques was especially delicious.I had lobster Thermidor and crepes Suzette - utter decadence. The cooking stations are a super addition to the ship. The regular veranda cabin was very comfortable - we usually opt for the penthouse cabins on the smaller ships, but we're fine in the regular veranda cabin. There was a great mix of passengers on board and an equally nice mix of staff. The Riviiera as a beautiful ship,, the art work isn't to my taste, but that is personal. All in all, a great cruise Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
to see Spain coast and Morocco. We came one day early to make sure catching the cruise. it seemed a bad idea staying in it assigned hotel Barcelona Hilton, not only charged double for 2 persons in one room, but had very poor ... Read More
to see Spain coast and Morocco. We came one day early to make sure catching the cruise. it seemed a bad idea staying in it assigned hotel Barcelona Hilton, not only charged double for 2 persons in one room, but had very poor service. Coming after a red eye flight from Atlanta around 10 AM, the front desk lady refused to let us check in early to get some sleep but let the same flight crews to check -in right way. Luckily Oceania personnel intervened to let us get in at 12 noon to catch lost sleep for two 70+ and 80+ old guys. Once on board the next day, we were treated well and the food and service were very well. After the cruise, we have found how to use the shipboard credit not before, may be next time if you have. The specialty restaurant reservations were not possible to have before 9 PM, so we had gave up with none during the trip. About the excursion to Casablanca we expect ed highly, but after arriving, only learned that the locals were closed everything after Ramadan and some Holiday not before. Well, you don't always get what you paid for. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
We had never travelled on Oceania but our travel agent recommended this cruise as we were going with our parents who are older people and need help in many ways. She said the service was great and the food was excellent and the itinerary ... Read More
We had never travelled on Oceania but our travel agent recommended this cruise as we were going with our parents who are older people and need help in many ways. She said the service was great and the food was excellent and the itinerary was also interesting for all our age ranges (from 10 to 82). Since we embarked the cruise we felt a personal service, we went to have lunch at the buffet and the waiters were ready at any moment to help my parents carry their plates or ask them if they needed something else. Before the drill someone from the crew came to my parents cabin and told them he was in charge of taking them to the drill station, help them put on their life jackets etc.. very nice of Oceania to do that. The cabins are very spacious and the shower is great. The cabin attendants great and the laundry area in each floor very useful. The food is simply fabulous either at the buffet or at any of the dinning rooms. You have many options to choose from. What I really liked is only the staff serves you the food from the buffet, you are not allowed to serve yourself which is good because you reduce the risk of transmitting viruses. We loved the ports, and the excursions were great. The Destinations crew was very professional and open. We were lucky that is was not too hot. The pool area is also very nice and the afternoon tea was great. My mom hurried us every day from the excursions so she could arrive in time for tea. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2016
Always enjoy sailing with Oceania. We sailed from Venice to Barcelona. Staff were most courteous and friendly as on our prior experiences with Oceania. Food was excellent at all meals, it is truly a cruise for Foodies! Their ... Read More
Always enjoy sailing with Oceania. We sailed from Venice to Barcelona. Staff were most courteous and friendly as on our prior experiences with Oceania. Food was excellent at all meals, it is truly a cruise for Foodies! Their "Lido" restaurant at dinner time is turned into another foodie event with choice of steaks (cooked as you order), lobster, shrimp, sushi, and many other great selections. Their specialty restaurants are a delight for the taste buds. Each restaurant has it's own identity with food choices to match. Best, though, there is no extra charge. Rooms are clean and very comfortable. CON: From where u arrive in Venice, there is a long, long walk to water taxis with your luggage. Oceania should warn their guests of this because it could be a brutal walk in the summer months. Better yet, they should hire transportation to the "water taxi" area! This is something Oceania should do, as a great deal of their guests are up in age and find it very, very unpleasant. We would never do it again unless these changes are made. Just to explain, we flew in 1 day early and were going to Molino hotel. After recovering from a very exhausting trip from airport to hotel, we enjoyed the rest of our cruise. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
The Riviera cruise (Oceania) was very satisfying on a number of levels, because of what they call ‘enrichment experiences’. On a culinary level, there is a choice between speciality restaurants serving some exceptional food (at no ... Read More
The Riviera cruise (Oceania) was very satisfying on a number of levels, because of what they call ‘enrichment experiences’. On a culinary level, there is a choice between speciality restaurants serving some exceptional food (at no extra cost) to the grand dining room that caters to the bulk of the passenger compliment. (The mass market) Service is attentive and exemplary but not the unobtrusive ‘British’ type of service that I prefer. Instead it is more of the false “how ya all doing, how was your day” introduction accompanied with an ear-to-ear smile. Dentistry on board, for the crew, must be of a high level??? On an emotional level it was satisfying. I know that I am over weight and am carrying 7 – 10 kg more than I should. The demographic on board makes me feel anorexic and there is no need to refuse that rich dessert. Yummy On a cultural level, there are all those ‘enrichment’ opportunities. An art school, a cooking school, educational guest speakers, karaoke (if that can be called enrichment), Trivia and a host of entertainment performances ranging from the exceptional to the ……. well let’s just say less than exceptional, with the opportunity of experiencing both giving the audience the opportunity of making their own judgement call.1 On a sight seeing level. Some tours started at 8:00 am and others as late as 12:00. This mix meant that on some days the alarm went off as the sun rose, and on other days one could enjoy a more relaxed morning. With all tours that we took, we were able to enjoy a scrumptious, not weigh limiting, afternoon tea. A custom that I could easily become accustomed to. No tour was full. (Very important) Busses were never more than about 50% full, by design. Some tours had multiple busses all only half full. This is important as the tour guides could talk to the group whilst out and about, without having to resort to having to use radio transmitters and earphones. This also reduces the risk of participants wandering off, causing delays for the rest of us. On an organisational level. ‘Herding’ over one thousand people can be an issue. At no time did I ever get that part of a herd impression. Boarding cruises as well as boarding the vessel initially, were all very well managed. On a financial level. They do not have a hand in your wallet at every turn. Most things are free with the exception of alcoholic drinks. (which are not cheap) Soft drinks, tea and scones, bottled water and entertainment are all available at no extra charge. On a relaxational level. My late mother had an expression ‘half baked’. Any person who came up with a dumb idea was ‘half baked’ Fortunately the ship provides ample opportunity for passenger to complete the baking process on sun loungers around the pool. Originating from colder northern hemisphere climes, perhaps they are not as much aware of the consequences as are passenger from Australasia. For those who prefer a more strenuous activity, there is a gym that I promised myself that I would visit frequently, but did not, as well as the usual deck games and golf putting. One afternoon, there was an on-selling promotional activity where guest were invited to listen to a presentation about future tours. One was ‘around the world in 180 days’ Six months of on-board life style would kill me! But a back to back cruise of perhaps 18 to 21 days? Well that is something to add to the bucket list. 1) During a song and dance routine, I had the impression that one of the dancers very nearly dropped another dancer. Not the way to ‘reject’ a lady’s advances in front of hundreds of on-lookers. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
I wanted just to get away and see something that I hadn't seen before. We did a pre-cruise to Machu Picchu and it was awesome! On board the ship was small and intimate. There was a variety of dining areas that were included in the ... Read More
I wanted just to get away and see something that I hadn't seen before. We did a pre-cruise to Machu Picchu and it was awesome! On board the ship was small and intimate. There was a variety of dining areas that were included in the price, Italian, Chinese etc. The Red Ginger (Chinese ) was the best. Had a lovely coffee bar. We had been up graded to a penthouse suite which was great except came with a butler, therefore extra gratuities. On the whole it was nice and roomy, good size closet and cupboards, nice sized balcony. We travelled through the Panama Canal, great. Stopped At Honduras, Cape Canveral, Miami then NYC---which was an over night, so we went and saw Matilda on Broadway, lovely. The service on the ship was fantastic. All polite and helpful. The entertainment was OK. Lecturers were great---lot of info for next port of call. Good excursions. Great cruise! I travelled with my sister for the first time. She is a bit younger and was therefore more energetic than me ( I have back issues). I would definitely travel with Oceania again---I like the size of their ships. You get to know more people and can arrange dinners or outings with them. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
Don't get me wrong we had a good time because we had 11 family members and a gang of friends onboard. We are all Crystal veterans giving Oceania a try because they had a much better Christmas itinerary than Crystal this year. ... Read More
Don't get me wrong we had a good time because we had 11 family members and a gang of friends onboard. We are all Crystal veterans giving Oceania a try because they had a much better Christmas itinerary than Crystal this year. Embarkation was a breeze, debarkation was unbelievably tedious, disorganized and my son missed his 11:00AM flight. We were told by Oceania (I called myself) that no matter how many children were onboard, there would be no programs or babysitters. We considered bringing a nanny, but decided the kids (5 & 8) could stay up some nights and the parents would turn in early some nights. Upon arrival, we were told there would be a kids orientation at 4:30. The kids club (what?) was amazing and getting a babysitter was not a problem. Such a big fuss about no kids, we hate kids, we don't want kids...on Oceania. Guess what...people don't leave their kids home at Christmas! Oceania get over it and say most of the year we don't encourage kids, but at the holidays we understand. Ship and cabins were nice. We had a Penthouse and it had a nice amount of space. Alternative restaurants, especially Jacques were very good. However, the dining room was not good at all. We began referring to it as the Mess Hall. Very inconsistent food and sometimes down right bad service. The first night our dover sole came with sauce on it and bones in it. Crazy! Terrace was great at breakfast and sometimes good at lunch. Waves, the service was ridiculous. Rarely got what we asked for. A glass of wine took forever. We did the prepaid drink package which was $5000 for our group. Very inconvenient having to give your card everytime we ordered a drink. Oceania has to figure out a less intrusive way to manage their drink inventory. Yes, that's what we were told it was for. There was no organized Bridge for my husband. Not happy. The advertised times of port debarkation were cut short at many ports. Leaving sometimes at 4:00 instead of 8:00. St. Barts, for instance. I made hair appt.s in advance throughout the trip. When I got onboard, they had no record of them. Not life threatening, but very inconvenient. The service on the pool deck was poor. No one made eye contact and offered nothing. Yes, if you asked, they got whatever it was for you, but no offers. Water???? We had booked two subsequent trips on Oceania. One for 35 days and another for 18 days. We have canceled both. We realized we are Crystal people. Until Oceania becomes All Inclusive and beefs up their service we're not going back. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
Pros: 1. Food was outstanding. 5-star restaurant quality in the specialty restaurants. 2. Common areas very nice, such as impressive library area, nice fitness room, etc. Cons: 1. Web site makes it so difficult to sign up for ... Read More
Pros: 1. Food was outstanding. 5-star restaurant quality in the specialty restaurants. 2. Common areas very nice, such as impressive library area, nice fitness room, etc. Cons: 1. Web site makes it so difficult to sign up for a cruise, we almost gave up. 2. Embarkation process poor. Had to wait 3+ hours after boarding until our cabin was ready. They could have sequenced the boarding times to avoid the long wait. 3. Disembarkation was TERRIBLE. Mass crowds pushing and shoving for baggage. Oceania only requested 18 porters and 3 customs stations for 1,200 guests. The line for a porter was 45-60 minutes long. Elderly people were experiencing medical concerns because of the lengthy waits to get through the crowd. It took nearly 2-1/2 hours to disembark. 4. Only after the cruise was underway were the guests informed that the in-port times for all ports was being reduced. In fact, the total in-port time was reduced 20 hours, which was almost 20% of what was advertised. As a result, our Christmas dinner plans ashore had to be cancelled at the very last minute, leaving us with nothing special on what was to have been a special evening. We considered this to be unacceptable. We go on cruises to see sights in different places, not to see more of the inside of the ship. The advertising for this cruise was inaccurate. 5. Value: This is a higher than average priced cruise line, but besides the food, there was little that was much different than we've experienced on other lines. In short, the "value" was lacking. Other: Service was adequate, but we wondered if the automatic gratuities reduced the incentives of staff to provide outstanding service. Other cruise lines without automatic gratuities seem to have a better overall service level, in our experience. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
This reviewer and his wife are seasoned cruisers. This was our first time with Oceania. We are in our early 60's. The Staff was incredible, faced with potentially overwhelming demands on the staff's times as the entire ship ... Read More
This reviewer and his wife are seasoned cruisers. This was our first time with Oceania. We are in our early 60's. The Staff was incredible, faced with potentially overwhelming demands on the staff's times as the entire ship was treated for norovirus. We did not get to do the enrichment activities we had booked (culinary experiences) due to the norovirus issue. We were refunded our monies for those activities. The Port of Miami is easy to get to via cab. As we did not travel with children, that topic is not applicable. We did not use the weight room or the spa, so those are not applicable to this review. The dining was superb. Entertainment was not as good as we had hoped for, The Embarkation process was slow due to the Ship's awaiting clearance from the CDC, and the disembarkation was pretty much on par with previous sailings on different Lines. A large number of the guests aboard this ship were pretentious, seemed to feel "entitled" (because???), and treated the staff and the shore excursion providers terribly, as if they were dogs. These actions were disgraceful, and followed the sterotype of the "ugly American." As examples" 1) One of our fellow guests left a tip in the tip jar at a shore excursion of a coin. 2) One of the cruisers asked (demanded!) that the pool staff "reposition the boat so that the sun" would not fall on her. This reviewer's wife stated that she hoped that this person had dementia, because it would be the only logical explanation for such an outré request. 3) And one of our fellow cruisers refused to allow other travelers pass her when she was on a tender. This same one also would enter the elevators BEFORE the elevator passengers could exit. 4) One of the diners had her tea pot removed from the table by the wait staff. She lit into the busser, demanded to see the maître d', and then demanded to have the manager come over to her table so she could demean him in front o the other diners...ALL AFTER APOLOGIES WERE GIVEN AND A NEW TEA POT REPLACED! 5) One cruiser made the comment about the norovirus issue, saying: "They (Oceania) should give us something..." This, after Oceania opened up their bars for all patrons- at no charge- twice. Understand that Oceania did not bring the norovirus on board, another guest did. Oceania had no "duty" to provide free alcoholic beverages to their guests, let alone to do so twice. Never have we experienced so much awful behavior among fellow cruisers. No one was smiling. Laughter was missing. This was not a "fun" cruise, but only because of the awful customers who were on this boat. Courtesy to others was almost non-existent. This was a cruise with the theme of "I'll get mine, by God, and I don't care about you or your needs." We will not cruise with Oceania again. The demographic of the customers is not one Read Less
Riviera Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.5
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 3.5 3.2
Public Rooms 4.5 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 2.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.3
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.8

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