Our Expert Loves Oceania Cruises
Our Expert Judy just came back from a cruise on Oceania's Marina. She has sent many clients on Oceania over the years, as a matter of fact; she had two clients on the ship at the time she sailed. She found the experience to be close to perfect from the time she arrived to the ship until she got off the ship.
Judy and her husband arrived in Copenhagen the night before they were to embark on the cruise. We always suggest to our clients that they arrive at their cruise port at least one day in advance. This alleviates any potential problems one might have traveling into other time zones and delays they might have with airlines. They enjoyed a nice day of sightseeing on their own, followed by a great dinner at their hotel. They kept it simple as they were a little tired from traveling and wanted to be fresh and ready to board the Marina the next day.
From the time they arrived at the cruise terminal, to the time they were in their room sipping complimentary champagne was no more than ten minutes. Oceania has all of your pertinent information on file before you travel, so there is no hold up when you board. Your travel documents are sent to you prior to your travel dates via e-documents and could not be simpler. They take your passports, show you to your room and you are ready to start your cruise vacation. Since Judy and her husband were on the concierge level, they had a bottle of wine and champagne waiting in their stateroom upon their arrival. Later that day, cheese and crackers and a fruit basket were delivered.
Their stateroom on the Concierge level was beautiful. The bathroom amenities were by Bvulgari and they had a wide variety of wonderful soaps, shampoos, body wash and shower gels to choose from. There was a separate shower and tub, which is not found on all cruise ships. The bathroom was spacious, closet space was amble, the balcony was a nice size and was set up with a table and chairs and the bedroom area was spacious. There was a large flat screen television with a DVD player. There was even a DVD Library onboard stocked full of classic and newly released movies. Their stateroom Steward was attentive and seemed to think of everything they might need even before they did. Judy loved that the Steward came to the room to collect her luggage just moments after she had unpacked. It was a nice touch and left more room in the stateroom with no luggage cluttering it. Also available on the Concierge level are specialty coffee beverages, cookies and burger sliders.
Judy's clients were staying in the PH 3 category. This is a beautiful Penthouse with a spacious wrap around balcony with amazing views. When you book a Penthouse, you are adorned with special amenities and opportunities. This category allows you to reserve your specialty restaurants early and you can order room service from the main dining room menu as well as the alternative dining menus.
The dining room was spectacular and always had plenty of choices ranging from regional specials to healthy options. Lobster is served every night whether you are in the main dining room or one of the four specialty restaurants. The Polo Grill is a traditional steakhouse, Tuscany a fine Italian cuisine, Red Ginger is Asian and Jacque is their signature French restaurant. Each specialty restaurant has the same menu each day but changes their specials for the day. Judy tried each one and enjoyed them all. She does suggest reserving in advance, as they are very popular. You will most likely not get in without an advanced reservation. They are all included in your cruise fare, giving you added value. The service is amazing and you absolutely feel as if you are dining at a 5-Star restaurant on land. When you reserve they will give you the choice of dining on your own or sitting at a larger table with people you do not know. This is a great way to meet your fellow travelers and enjoy their company. Many long lasting friendships are made this way. Everything is scratch made onboard by Oceania chefs. Two other choices are the Terrace Grill and Waves. Both are more casual and are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Also included in your Concierge level amenities is free access to the Canyon Ranch Spa. This gives you entrance to the fitness center, spa, sauna and a private Jacuzzi and quiet area. These amenities are also free of charge with suites and penthouse category staterooms. There is a nominal fee if you would like access to this area and are not in one of these mentioned rooms.
The fitness center is equipped with treadmills, elliptical machines and plenty of resistance training equipment. They also offer Pilates, yoga and spin classes at a nominal charge.
Shore excursions are offered at each port and are not to be missed. Judy's favorite one was in Belfast called "The Titanic Trail ". This included a private bus that took them to the location where the Titanic was built and a private tour of the Titanic Museum. She also tremendously enjoyed and would recommend the train ride to the top of the mountain in Flamm, Norway. In Dublin, they went to Temple Street. The street is lined with bars and the locals were celebrating their Super Bowl type sporting event. Every bar was having a party and it was great fun. Oceania always makes sure passengers know what is available to them throughout the cruise via a daily newsletter delivered to each stateroom or on the television.
This particular cruise itinerary started in Copenhagen, Denmark and traveled to Bergen, Norway; Belfast, Ireland and Dublin, Ireland. They had three at sea days as there were some problems with the weather. To compensate for the changes, the Captain had a special cocktail party for all the guests.
In the evenings, they chose to go to a show, enjoy the piano bar or relax in their stateroom. The entertainment changes nightly and one of Judy's favorites was the magic show.
After the cruise was over, Judy and her party spent a few days in London. They did the Hop On Hop Off tour, which gives you the opportunity to see the popular sites on your own time. They went to Buckingham Palace for a tour and saw many different areas of the Palace that are not always open to the public. They did the audio tour and learned so much about the Palace during their visit. It was magical, opulent and very regal. After that, they saw the House of Parliament, the London Eye, Big Ben and famous shopping areas.
Our Experts love Oceania Cruises. They all recommend them highly to their clients. Judy is just waiting patiently for her next chance to go again.