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Mason

Age: 67

Occupation:retired

Number of Cruises: 0

Cruise Line: P & O Cruises

Ship: Oceana

Sailing Date: 2011-10-9

Itinerary: W Med

Car Park was a nightmare. Everyone assumes that you know where to go and what to do and when. We were told ALL our baggage would be taken aboard. What they didn't tell us was that we would have to carry ALL clothes on hangars ourselves. My wife and I are not in the best of health but still had to carry four large hanging bags without assisstance. Reception Staff were very unhelpful and on the occassion of my wifes sea sickness two attendants and the Manager actually made sport of her condition.You don't need that when you are feeling ill. The Front of House Manager asked her ...if she had "lost her sense of humour". When we complained the next day. The Manager denied it. I will not travel with P&O again. Restaurants vary. We dined in CLUB Adriatic Restaurant - food good but not special. Waitors were very rude. They would constantly interrupt our conversation to ask if we wanted wine/liquers etc. Very annoying! Waitors are on a deadline to feed the 1st sitting so that they can prepare for 2nd. So you get Menu & Wine List along with your requests for menu selections without time to consider or order an apperitif. This would be OK in British Home Stores restaurant but not on a cruise that one has paid more than £4000 for. The Restaurant on the top deck self-service restaurant was a bun fight to get a seat. Then you get trampled by people who act like a starving mob. Tables are quickly cleaned by staff but the overall experience is not a good one.

Food in Adriatic was good but not special. Waitors spoiled the enjoyment factor. Breakfast was more relaxed.

Food in the self-service restaurant (we called it BHS) mediocre for the price we paid. Breakfasts were hearty rather than sophisticated.

Horizon Grill we ate here only one night. Although the waitors did not interrupt as much as in the Adriatic they still had the curious idea that you should be given a Wine List and Menu and have ordered your selections before your bottom touched the seat. The idea of an apperitif before a meal is an alien concept to them. For those who expect a more sophisticated mealtime approach I would advise against Oceana.

Our stateroom was functional (apart from the hairdryer) rather than luxurious.

We had a balcony which gave us the option of a little more privacy and was good to sit and read in peace or watch dolphins, flying fish etc.

I need air con as I am asthmatic. I found the air con was virtually ineffective even after several tries for the service people to get the room cool.

Our Cabin Steward was fantastic and for her nothing was too much effort.

Music in most places on the ship was too loud. If you could get a seat in the Atrium you could find different music coming at you from as many as three different sources. There seemed to be nowhere quiet that you could go and just sit and talk with friends.

The entertainers mostly seemed to be singers who hadn't quite made it in the UK. There was a very good comedian/conjurer that seemed to know how to play to an audience but most of the other performers were conspicuously second rate wanabees.

Music on deck was loud and intrusive. The only option for escape was the stern decks. Pianist in the Atrium before dinner in the evening was relaxing but the effect was lost when we enterred the Adriatic Restaurant. Most of the competitions in the bars related more to that of "dumbed down" television shows but were very badly done and often patronized the guests and insulted their intelligence.

We went to Rome and a short tour, by bus, that did not involve a lot of walking. For us this was the right choice. We saw enough of Rome to want to go back in an off-peak period and see more. We chose the "Little Train in Nice" during our stop at Monte Carlo. Again this was the right choice for us.

We also chose the mini coach tour of Gibralter. The tour was good and not too much walking for us but the tapas was poor quality and value for money.

We went ashore at two other places but I feel it would have been beneficial if we could have stayed overnight at, for example, Barcelona to experience Las Ramblas by night.

Livorno was a pleasant little town for some low key shopping. We did not attempt Pisa or Flornce from there as we felt that after Rome the day before if might prove to be too much for us.

My lasting impression of Oceana is NOISE, selfish people, rude waitors and unhelpful and, as it turns out, dishonest reception staff (Dishonest in terms of not telling the truth).

I enjoyed the voyage but I would look for a higher quality if I wanted to cruise again and I would not choose P&O. I enjoyed watching the dolphins and fish from my balcony. The food was of a reasonable quality but not special.

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