Ultra-deluxe barging in France

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#23
California
669 Posts
Joined Feb 2012
Originally posted by OctoberKat
Gosh, you all, happily enjoyed your lovely greetings, so kind! Perks me right up.

Pamela, I very much hope you and your husband can do the barge "cruise" through Burgundy. It's a marvelous trip and so restorative. Plus, FRANCE, you know?! Ask me anything if questions arise later.

Portofino, I am looking at Oceania's Regatta for the Alaska cruise. it departs from San Francisco which is super handy for us. Will be booking semi-soon for 2018 since we'll want owner's suite or next level down.
Note Oceania is not a luxury line, it is upper premium.
Here is my review of Oceania Regatta in Alaska last month

https://www.cruisecritic.com/memberr...EntryID=584144

But maybe if you are in the owner's suite, you can order up special meals and bypass the dining issues.
#24
NY, ZG/Colorado
947 Posts
Joined Jun 2013
Originally posted by Catlover54
Note Oceania is not a luxury line, it is upper premium.
Here is my review of Oceania Regatta in Alaska last month

https://www.cruisecritic.com/memberr...EntryID=584144

But maybe if you are in the owner's suite, you can order up special meals and bypass the dining issues.
Yes, it is upper premium, but the OS is very luxurious. Your butler will bring meals from any of the venues, but we tend to enjoy dining in the restaurants.
As I mentioned to OctoberKat, timing is everything when taking a cruise to Alaska. May is the time to go, if you want to avoid crowds and children. That will greatly impact any cruise to Alaska in prime Summer season. We avoid Summer cruises like the plague.

I have been on 4 Oceania cruises and they suit us just fine. The smaller R ships tend to feel more crowded when the weather is inclement because everyone tends to stay inside to keep warm. But, when in your own OS, you can avoid those issues.
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"I haven't been everywhere but it's on my list".....
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#25
Washington State
22,800 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
Originally posted by portofinoitaly
The smaller R ships tend to feel more crowded when the weather is inclement because everyone tends to stay inside to keep warm. But, when in your own OS, you can avoid those issues.
So, you are saying that you can avoid the crowds by staying inside of your suite? I can see how easily the ship could get crowded if too many people are inside but, IMO, having to stay in your suite - even an Owner's Suite - would not make for a wonderful cruise.
#26
SF Bay Area
1,017 Posts
Joined Oct 2014
Back to Pamela with an invitation to check back in to apprise us of your barge plans/progress. We, the vicarious, would be pleased to ride along.
#27
NY, ZG/Colorado
947 Posts
Joined Jun 2013
Originally posted by Travelcat2
So, you are saying that you can avoid the crowds by staying inside of your suite? I can see how easily the ship could get crowded if too many people are inside but, IMO, having to stay in your suite - even an Owner's Suite - would not make for a wonderful cruise.
Due to the fact I have taken this actual cruise, same itinerary, same ship, I am providing OctoberKat with my experience. Everyone is different.

We prefer the OS because we are not very social and enjoy the extra space, two bathrooms, reading, relaxing in our private space, and the views of Alaska all by ourselves in our lovely suite. Nothing like seeing Hubbard Glacier up close and personal while everyone else is fighting for a spot. We have our own balcony

We also only dine for two every evening and never share a table. OctoberKat may differ, but I am providing my experience. She will make the best choice for she and her hubby.
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"I haven't been everywhere but it's on my list".....
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#28
SF Bay Area
1,017 Posts
Joined Oct 2014
Originally posted by portofinoitaly
We prefer the OS because we are not very social and enjoy the extra space, two bathrooms, reading, relaxing in our private space, and the views of Alaska all by ourselves in our lovely suite..

I am SO with you on this. Sounds divinely perfect.
#29
Washington State
22,800 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
Originally posted by portofinoitaly
Due to the fact I have taken this actual cruise, same itinerary, same ship, I am providing OctoberKat with my experience. Everyone is different.

We prefer the OS because we are not very social and enjoy the extra space, two bathrooms, reading, relaxing in our private space, and the views of Alaska all by ourselves in our lovely suite. Nothing like seeing Hubbard Glacier up close and personal while everyone else is fighting for a spot. We have our own balcony

We also only dine for two every evening and never share a table. OctoberKat may differ, but I am providing my experience. She will make the best choice for she and her hubby.
While I find your "take" on the situation unique, I understand and respect that there are "different strokes for different folks". Even when we have stayed in a 2 bedroom suite, we do not spend most of our time in our suite (unless we invite people in to share our wonderful views or to have a cocktail party).

The TS has sailed on Regent's smallest ship and likely knows how crowded it can get. Oceania's smaller ships are considerably larger but appear smaller. I do like Oceania's Riviera and Marina as they are spacious, light and airy while the smaller ships seem dark and cramped. It is just a matter of personal preference - one that I like to share with people that have yet to sail on Oceania.
#31
5 Posts
Joined Jul 2017
Thank you SOOOOO much!!! So sorry I've been out of the loop for a few days ... work smash and promising myself to settle back in here when I have time ...

Can't wait to read your links!!! I know it's crazy to already be so excited about something we won't be doing for almost a YEAR but hey, anticipation is such a huge part of the experience!

We did lock and load ... will be on the Renaissance with European Waterways next summer doing the Burgundy cruise. I'm already working on refreshing my French (I know, I know, I won't need it on the barge ... but we're hoping to take advantage of the ability to wander through the towns and villages and while on last two "big trips" to Spain and Italy my husband was very well-versed in Spanish and Italian, he's struggling with French whereas I studied it for seven years ... MANY years ago, though ... but I've taken on the "learn enough to be able to communicate with the people in the markets and towns" duties! (It's also good to sharpen my memory, which took a big hit due to minor medical issues).

Not 100% sure of the itinerary yet (I see sample itineraries on their site but not positive that those will still be the same stops next summer). Looking forward to a lot of walking and a LOT of wine and amazing food ... and to relearning how to ride a bike before we go!

Planning on giving ourselves two nights in Paris beforehand and another two afterwards to avoid the worries of delays and, you know, to spend a few days and nights in Paris!
#32
SF Bay Area
1,017 Posts
Joined Oct 2014
Delighted to learn you booked, Pamela -- good on you! Our first canal barge trip was aboard Renaissance; it is elegantly yet comfortably furnished and has larger-than-the-norm cabins. Confident your spjourn will be fabulous.

You will need your French in the countryside along the barge route. English much less common there than in Paris, a truism no doubt.
#34
5 Posts
Joined Jul 2017
So glad to know my new addiction to Duolingo will not be completely wasted Now if re-learning to ride a bike goes half as well as re-learning enough French to be reasonably conversational I will be happy!

Meanwhile, every week or so I put aside an hour to just relax (with a glass of French wine) and read/re-read people's posts and stories about their barge cruises ... we think this is the best of both worlds!