“This ship may just be the crowning jewel of the cruise industry! — Tom Baker
Have you sailed Oceania? Please comment at the bottom of this review!
The Marina has arrived! She was christened by E entertainment host and Godmother Mary Hart in early February, 2011.
I was fortunate to be among early travelers on a 3-day voyage to the Bahamas from Miami on this one-of-a-kind new ship.
It was my first Oceania Cruises voyage and one filled with many pleasant surprises. This 774 foot-long ship carries 1,258 passengers, and caters “upper premium” (not luxury) traveler.
While Marina is quite a bit larger than the smaller trio of 700-passenger ships in the Oceania fleet, she is a lovely addition and will be one of the most coveted ships in the cruise industry–this I promise. Oceania has a very loyal following, they post sold-out signs on cruises worldwide much farther in advance than any other premium line. This speaks for itself…
The company positions itself above Holland America and Celebrity with prices that run about $100 per person a day higher than those major players… It is a cruise ship for well-traveled foodies who enjoy a true country club atmosphere, port-rich itineraries, and a relaxed dress-code onboard.
The reality is that the ship offers many luxury elements that exceed some of the best luxury lines I have been on… What does this mean?
- There are eight dining venues.
- Included in the cruise price are Asian-inspired Red Ginger, Polo Grill (steak house), Toscana (Italian), Terrace Café (lido buffet), and Grande Dining Room. All require reservations except for the Grand Dining Room and Terrace Café.
- There are two fee restaurants: A 6-course meal in La Reserve with pairings from Wine Spectator Magazine at $75pp; and the luxurious, intimate (maximum 10 guest Prive where the fee is $100 per guest for a gourmet feast.
- Most menus are designed by Master Chef and notable food celebrity, Jaques Pepin, with a no-cover-charge restaurant named for him onboard.
- The Grand Dining room has open seating and ever- changing continental cuisine menus including French inspired Jaques’ favorites.
- For the calorie-conscious, there are items from Canyon Ranch Spa Club.
- The ship is drop dead gorgeous and filled with custom designed residential style furnishings, has a $7 million dollar contemporary art collection, and is spacious beyond other ships in her class.
- Her lobby is filled with exquisite Lalique.
- New touches include a culinary arts cooking center sponsored by Bon Appétit Magazine and the Artists Loft where guests can learn to paint among other artful touches.
- There is full scale entertainment
- Canyon Ranch Spa Club at sea… The pool areas are exquisite and rival any land-based resort for elegance and comfort.
- We sailed in a Concierge Class cabin, at 282 square feet with balcony. They are extremely comfortable, spacious, are well designed.
- The all marble/granite bathrooms include separate full-sized tub shower stall–a plus. The shower stall was a bit small, however, and the rain shower head would be difficult to use for anyone over 6 feet tall.
- These lovely rooms have a special amenities including laptop usage in the cabin, upgrade Bvlgari bath products, priority alternative dining reservations, and a dedicated Concierge Lounge with many more touches…
- There are many penthouses and suites onboard and some of the largest ever designed including massive suites designed entirely by noted designer Dakota Jackson and Ralph Lauren Home.
- There are non-concierge outside cabins and some inside cabins as well, with reduced sizes and different bathroom layouts, but still very pleasant.
Staff: The service staff on Oceania hail mostly from the Philippines and Eastern Europe. They are hospitable and have a polite can-do attitude.