Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
Hoopster95

MARINA/French Polynesia Mar 4-19,2018 REVIEW w/lots of photos

Recommended Posts

I was going to wait until later to say this, but I'll go ahead. This should be required reading for anyone planning on going to FP.

 

Wonderful job, thanks for doing this. We don't plan on going back anytime soon, but this is enough to make me want to do it again.

 

You do an excellent job with reviews.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for all your efforts in creating this wonderful review. It helps to bring back pleasant memories of our cruise around Tahiti on Renaissance cruises in 2000 (when we had a bit more get up and go then we do now).:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wonderful pictures. Hi from down the road!

 

Hey neighbor! Thx for the shout out.

Btw I just expanded your signature.... nice :). You're experienced with Hawaii... I think you need to visit French Polynesia next time instead.

 

You do an excellent job with reviews.

 

Thank you for the kind words Orv. Take ownership in this review... a lot of it came from you guys besides what I learned on the fly and once on board. But I knew pretty much what to do and expect before getting on Marina through much of what's been discussed on this board. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hey neighbor! Thx for the shout out.

Btw I just expanded your signature.... nice :). You're experienced with Hawaii... I think you need to visit French Polynesia next time instead.

 

LOL, I'll be sure to pass on that recommendation to DH :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hoopster95

I'm currently looking into our post cruise stay at the Hilton or Intercontinental on Moorea. Thanks so much for all of your information as it's been very helpful. As both properties are similar in price I'm not sure which we'll go with. But if we do stay at the Hilton would you recommend going with the 1/2 board (breakfast and dinner)? The difference is about $325 per night. Thanks for any input!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great review and great pictures. Brings back our trip 4 years ago. Only difference is that we ended in Sydney, Australia and the cruise was about 6 days longer. Great places to see.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

March 7 - Papeete (Day 1 Embarkation Day)

 

As mentioned in a previous post, there are not many taxis on Moorea. Speaking with the hotel concierge the day before, she mentioned we must pre-book a ride for sure. So we did then and there to pick us up at 11:15am so that we can easily make the 12:15 over to Papeete. So after a leisurely "last-time" snorkel and breakfast, we checked out and met our driver right on time.

After only about a 25-30min drive, we got to the Vaiare Ferry terminal.

 

DSC05050_zpscco6h3gj.jpg

 

 

Note the map below (posted at the terminal)... I've added the two red arrows on the north side of the island. The furthest west is where the Intercontinental is located.... the middle arrow between Opunohu Bay and Cook's Bay is where the Hilton is located.

 

IMG_2264_zpsvzmarcsb.jpg

 

The ferry terminal was relatively sparse with not many cars or people.... we were only the third taxi there in line. There were only a few other pieces of luggage in the cart/crate they use to load the ferry with. In the end the were several crates full to the top. Note the Avis Car rental directly across the street... super convenient for those of you to set up a day trip from Papeete for example and rent a car for a day. Friends of ours on the cruise rented a car after disembark and had it for two days prior to coming back to Papeete.

 

DSC05053_zpsnbqdsmmz.jpg

 

The terminal has a fresh fruit stand, a couple of other nick-nack stands and also a coffee/sandwich bar with plenty of spots to find a seat. It quickly became very busy right around 12pm which was about 5 minutes prior to the Terevau ferry arriving from Papeete. It was very interesting to see how quickly they disembark the ferry... Very efficient I thought. The gate opened for foot traffic and we were herded onto the ferry

 

DSC05063_zps9purqofo.jpg

 

This small catamaran also holds a very limited amount of small vehicles/motorcycles/bicycles within it's hold. These are not cars coming off the ferry... but being loaded backwards so that they can easily drive off when getting to the other side. Note the silver crates containing baggage at the bottom of the ramp just past the front of the white car against the wall... the first one is empty but the next ones are full. They also wheel those up the ramps into the holds.

 

DSC05067_zpsywvv4fes.jpg

 

There's plenty of school kids on the ferry as high school is on Papeete. Tons of parents/Family pick up/drop off kids/teens... it was very interesting to note how few of them were mesmerized on the hand held devices, actually having conversations with each other. Cars on, kids on, passengers on, cargo loaded.... time to go. We'll be back on Moorea tomorrow with Marina.

 

IMG_2266_zpsozrbqhlm.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hoopster95

I'm currently looking into our post cruise stay at the Hilton or Intercontinental on Moorea. Thanks so much for all of your information as it's been very helpful. As both properties are similar in price I'm not sure which we'll go with. But if we do stay at the Hilton would you recommend going with the 1/2 board (breakfast and dinner)? The difference is about $325 per night. Thanks for any input!

 

Hi Sea42. We booked with "breakfast included" and that was it. I had read about "half board" and "full board" however when I emailed the Hilton regarding meal plans they replied they don't do Half board or full board anymore. It wasn't an option on the booking websites.

 

Breakfast is $41pp if not included with your booking. Dinner at the Creperie for 2 with glass of wine about $80-$100. Dinner at the Arii Vahine probably closer to $120-$140. You can also dine at the Rotui Grill at dinner for about $70 (ie. Burgers, salads, fresh tuna).... they had an awesome Brie/bacon burger. Hinano local beers 800-950 xpf (about $10-$11).

 

I have zero experience with the Intercontinental other than reserving our rental car at their Avis on site the day we tendered from the Marina. We noted there are way more walkable options outside the front gate for dining. There is nothing walking distance from the Hilton so we were somewhat "trapped" per se.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The weather in the pictures sure seemed nice up to that point didn't it? But looming over the hillside was a very impressive storm cloud that must've been moving very fast... it actually caught up with the catamaran and dumped a massive rain mid way across the channel.

 

IMG_2271_zpsmyzmaoee.jpg

 

Shorts/t-shirt/no umbrella/luggage in tow.... we were afraid by the time we get to Papeete that the rain would be a real issue rolling our luggage over to the cruise ship entry point that we initially considered grabbing a taxi or simply sitting around the ferry terminal to see if the deluge let up a bit. Thankfully as we disembarked the rains did let up a bit. I still approached a driver of a tour van to ask where to find a taxi to the ship and he said "no ride needed", simply walk there in 10 minutes and pointed down the street. This truly was not a big deal at all now that the rains let up.... but with a deluge we and our luggage would have been sopping wet

 

IMG_2287_zpsfgsfi1am.jpg

 

The first ship you see above is the Paul Gauguin.... the Marina is hiding just behind. That roadway at the pier did not go all the way through to the cruise ship area, so we had to detour up to the main road for about a block

 

IMG_2291_zpstetbrfau.jpg

 

From the ferry drop off to the cruise ship tent was almost exactly 10 minutes. It was approximately 1pm and hardly anyone was there checking in luggage.

 

IMG_2302_zps9oqdfavv.jpg

 

Very easy process.... attach my luggage tags, show the officer at the desk my paperwork, and walk on through.

How super easy this was.... 45 minutes ago we were just leaving Moorea on the Ferry and here were we walking up in to the Marina for the very first time!

 

IMG_2305_zpsq9f8pqsp.jpg

 

 

Immediately upon entering Marina's grand reception area on deck 5, there was no time to look stare and gawk at anything as there's several staff to greet you and immediately herd you through the hallway into the theatre... rather than within the outside terminal, here's where they processed your cruise documents, took your credit card and passport info, and also handed your the Oceania "World" room card.

 

IMG_2307_zpsp4torebr.jpg

 

 

Rooms were ready long ago (12pm) so we were more than eager to get up to our deck and settle into our cabin. We did not bother to site-see around the ship whatsoever and simply headed over to the elevators so we can go up to our room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allow me to backtrack a little bit in time.... we had originally booked an interior. I've sailed in plenty of interiors, OV's and various balconies and figured I would be satisfied on this more expensive sailing with the interior. I'll say now that I did view an interior and they are much larger than RCL's and much more refined/elegant to be sure.

 

About 45 days prior to sail date I received an upsell email for $500 to a Concierge Veranda! I called and asked the gentleman "why me"? He said he was calling from revenue and it's first come-first served as many don't take the deal. No brainer for me... I immediately took the deal as there were only 3 cabins left I could upgrade to. One week later another email for a $400 upsell to a Penthouse category.... I hadn't finished reading the email and was already dialing the number. AWESOME!! I had about 10 choices of PH1 on deck 11, but specifically there was a midship deck 10 PH2 (so not underneath any public venues like deck 11) that was super conveniently located just down the hall from Concierge lounge and right at the mid-ship elevators (easy access to Horizons, pool deck, down to the theatre, etc). I know from my RCL experience that even though I am not mobility disabled, many times the easy access location to/from the room is a major plus. I took the PH2 upsell and received cabin 10030.

 

0f512113-0e22-42a7-9d61-db89a93e2472_zpshioc91fy.jpg

 

 

I did not tell my girlfriend.... she still thought we were walking into an interior. At first she did not get it as we entered and was very confused, but soon enough the tears did start rolling so it was a very cool surprise and great way to start the cruise.

 

DSC05069_zpscdurceiy.jpg

 

E8ALipg9PdE

 

 

EwghVWQUlmA

 

 

There are plenty of on-line photos for Oceania and the Marina specifically regarding various cabins so I'll keep this short with the videos above... pretty much tells the story. Gorgeous bright and spacious cabin, beautiful linens and furniture, nice amenities in the bathroom.... very comfortable cabin that served as an excellent home for 12 days. We used this cabin and balcony more so than any other balcony cabin we ever had

 

From the balcony, look just behind the Paul Gauguin's bow... you can see the brown roof line of the Arameti Ferry, and just past it within the same building (you can't see it in this photo) would be the Terevau Terminal. You can gauge the walking distance here perhaps better for your luggage coming off of the ferry.

 

DSC05075_zpsgdjfgv2n.jpg

 

I also thought a fantastic touch was the use of a lap-top provided by Oceania. Like RCL, various paperwork was also provided upon embarkation detailing benefits of the PH suite, on board amenities, etc. The Oceania's version of RCL's daily "Compass" is called "The Current".

 

IMG_2337_zpshsnylhdw.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for your review. DH is a city/culture guy...I keep hoping I can talk him into this cruise. For now, I will live vicariously. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

We were assigned bungalow #54...

 

Yep, simply horrible... I didn't know if I could take this!

 

IMG_2096_zpsfeyp6oa1.jpg

 

Direct access into the ocean, plenty of fish immediately right there with corals only 15-20 feet away with still a ton of room to simply float around and lose yourself in bliss!

 

IMG_2097_zpslfkbv6uq.jpg

 

 

Wonderful review. Don't laugh, but I am always fascinated by how these bungalows are built over the water. How exactly did they build the plumbing? Where and how does everything go?

Looking forward to the rest of the review.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What a fantastic surprise the cabin upgrade must have been! How fun to be able to do that!

 

Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wonderful review. Don't laugh, but I am always fascinated by how these bungalows are built over the water. How exactly did they build the plumbing? Where and how does everything go?

 

Great question. Pipes are underneath the walkways. I noted the pipes one time when the GF and I talked about this exact question and I never revisited the question again. I have no clue if there's a pump station or holding tanks buried (ie. like a septic system) or if simply gravity fed (don't think so as not enough slope for the distance all the way out to the last bungalow I don't think?). Our specific pipes from our bungalow disappeared into the earth as our walkway entry went onto land.

 

If anyone knows, please post :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had entered this cruise with the full assumption in the back of my head that I would not do a full fledged CC picture review as I have done in the past. My time is precious these days and these installments take hours by the time photos are loaded. I purposely did not go hog wild with photo snapping throughout the ship for this reason, and I also correctly made an assumption that I might be one of the very few (if not only one) with camera in hand taking pictures of everything. Unlike the RCL forum where there are tons of photo reviews, there are very few picture reviews around for Oceania so I figured I would be breaking some kind of ground. Nonetheless, it was a breath of fresh air to not be on edge at every turn to document absolutely everything with my camera as I progressed along.

 

Having said that, I did take photos..... just not 10 of of the same thing at different angles. And because of that some of my photos are better than others,and I'll share with you the only one poor photo of a specific area/thing I wish to point out if I feel is important for this review.

 

So let's get started.... Oceania has a "Cruise Planner" dashboard just like RCL does to book dining, amenities, excursions, etc. Pre cruise, I was able to book one specialty reservation in each of the 4 venues. We wanted to start this cruise off with a bang, so we booked Oceania's signature venue"Jacques" French Cuisine for night #1. We wanted to head down to check out the venue right away to begin our exploration so from our cabin we took the elevator down to deck 5.... note cabin 10030 in the deck plan below,this deck plan is not quite to scale. The front door of 10030 is centered between the stairs and the elevator, and removed by a wall (much like RCLships), so very private to noise and traffic even along with the central location.

 

618f2f4e-00ea-4d91-bbee-2d79f3f89f4d_zpsgptsy2cq.png

 

Once down to deck 5 we were finally able to admire Marina's reception area. The space is set up much like the RCL's Vision and Radiance class Centrums as a central meeting point with Guest Services, Excursion Desk, Concierge, and various seating within the space. The staircase leading to deck 6 opens up to the Executive Lounge, Loyalty ambassador, and entry into the gorgeous Martini and Grand Bar areas (more on this later)

 

IMG_2322_zpsugiyerkl.jpg

 

b5be4886-90f3-41a8-af89-0e11ec57cb3f_zpsk1jh97ow.png

 

This is the only time you will see any sales going on whatsoever around the ship... and only at this very location.

All the rest of the 11 days there were no sale pitches, no $10"sales" with scrums of cruisers fighting for cheap scarfs, no one came up to me at all during any meal to solicit specialty dining, not a single"professional photo" was solicited... it was FANTASTIC.

 

DSC05101_zpsc4gsrals.jpg

 

The rest of this space at this time? (around 2pm).... hmmmm..... ghost town.Where is everybody? Besides a few cruisers who just entered and awaiting with bags, there on the left at guest services is the largest line-up I witnessed in 12 days. There were 3 guest services personnel and when I got in line I was inf ront of one of them in about 60 seconds where I upgraded my "Select"beverage package to "Prestige" for $20pp per day. She took our cards and re-printed them (no sticker) to indicate our package. No fumbling around, no angry cruisers, no complainers, just people asking easy civilized questions... very professional, quick and very easy. I immediately thought that something is wrong with my experiences on RCL with the systems in place as they always seem to be a hub of activity with many issues to deal with at Guest Services not only upon embarkation, but throughout cruises.

 

DSC05106_zps0gjfi59u.jpg

 

Other than the 4 specialty reservations allotted pre-cruise, would you like more during the cruise? No problem.... just come down to this concierge desk starting at 8am each day to see if there is space anywhere. I was told that there were many larger groups on board holding reservations on many of the dates that it was impossible to open up tables. Having said that, we were still successful going to Red Ginger and Polo twice on this sailing. The 3 times we tried for an extra specialty, only once were we denied in any of the venues on that night as all 4 venues were booked solid unless you wished to dine after 9pm.

DSC05102_zps8igm15nu.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So again, with plenty of on-line photos available and much better than mine, I'll try to keep the number of photos I use at a minimum here as I go through the ship.... still on deck 5 we turn the corner into one of the hallways by the boutiques wanting to find Jacques. Instead, the first hallways leads us through the boutiques and into a dead end to the front door of Red Ginger.

 

DSC05104_zpsrxuvmzk0.jpg

 

DSC05110_zpsvhyqva3j.jpg

 

 

For my good friends over from the RCL board following this review, RCL's Izumi on Vision and Radiance Class turn out to be much nicer and more pleasing venues for me personally vs. Oceania's Asian Fusion venue. This place looked very bland to me and very boring, dark and cave-like. RCL's Izumi up in the Viking Crown (or back at the old Seaview Cafe on Jewel) are superior, brighter locations affording awesome views. That's where the comparison stops. Red Ginger turned out to be one of our favorite meals of the 12 days (more on this at a later date/post), superb menu with tons of options, and the venue came alive at night totally packed with mood lighting, unlike Izumi which is empty for the most part with no real culture. However, at this moment Red Ginger empty.... meh. So don't let the initial look of this venue turn you off!

 

DSC05112_zpsstwaohl5.jpg

 

DSC05115_zpsj7bodybz.jpg

 

For those interested, they offered an interesting saki collection as well for a fee, not included with the prestige package.

 

DSC05118_zpsibtks6no.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Retracing our steps back out of Red Ginger and into the main reception area, we turned the corner into the other hallway and finally headed towards Jacques. You'll note right away the amount of very interesting artwork all over the ship.

 

DSC05125_zpsvp9dgb4s.jpg

 

Halfway down this hall is the main entry into Jacques, Oceania's "flagship" venue, created and inspired by internationally acclaimed French chef Jacques Pepin.

 

DSC05127_zpsyyanhrxj.jpg

 

Yes, looks very "French".... lacy, diminutive, soft colors, multiple textures, arches.... GF loved the look, I didn't. Nonetheless it painted a picture of being in a fine French tavern in Lyon for example so I guess the presentation works.

 

DSC05128_zpsbyeqg7nb.jpg

 

Most interesting is I was told that Pepin insisted the venue had real hard wood floors.... you will not see this on any other cruise ships (ie. fire hazard)

 

DSC05129_zpseu4gwux0.jpg

 

DSC05134_zpsamujyewy.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For my friends from the RCL board who know me well enough, they can attest I am not a Main Dining Room fan at RCL, I normally stick with the Specialty restaurants. Having said that, Oceania insists with all of their marketing that they have the best food at sea, so I expected the world when it came to food and service.

 

Leaving Jacques, rather than retrace our steps again back to the reception area, instead the hallway continued back to the rear elevator bank and staircase, so we quickly made our way up to deck 6 to check out the Grand Dining Room.

 

DSC05138_zpsi1jcresz.jpg

 

DSC05139_zpsrtjbvifu.jpg

 

I am sorry to say Oceania loyalists but here's one of the rare places where Royal Caribbean wins hands down... I found the Grand Dining room here to be a major let down aesthetically, very bland and cold. No contest to even Vision Class two tier dining rooms, color schemes and center piece chandeliers. This really surprised me for this ship especially with regard to the level of finishes in the cabins and elsewhere on the ship. The Royal Caribbean main dining rooms are masterpieces in comparison

DSC05141_zpsvujggukv.jpg

 

Granite counter tops? Check.... beveled edge etched glass? Check... Pepper grinders???. Check!! (Inside joke for RCL fans on the other forum.... don't ask). But that's about it.... until we talk about the food itself, then it's a different story compared to RCL.

 

 

DSC05142_zps1iekdg8v.jpg

 

Opposite to the main entrance of the Grand Dining room is a long seating area called the Grand Bar.... it's not really a bar, table service is provided here. It's also the area the string quartet plays nightly. It turns out we loved this area for a quiet cocktail pre-dinner as the bar tender at the Casino Bar (where drinks were mixed for this venue) was awesome.

 

IMG_2970_zps8sbnlnsa.jpg

 

Halfway down this Grand Bar is a "side-street" so to speak where you can turn into to access the Casino.... you go through and past the bar into the Casino.

 

 

IMG_2967_zpsmh3epncz.jpg

Edited by Hoopster95

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I forgot to post the deck 6 deck plan.... here it is. You can see I'm in the casino Bar dead center and I'm about to continue forward through the casino towards the Martinis and the Upper Hall of the reception area.

 

b934299f-20c0-4c3e-9233-fa00c37ecc7e_zpsr3p8zuwq.png

 

Speaking of the Casino....Way small compared to typical RCL ships, and spending time nightly down at both the Grand Bar and Martini Bar, I passed by and looked in nightly and it was never busy in here. I wonder if insomniacs came here later in the evening when the rest of the ship was shut down? I did not game at all this cruise, and this was the only time I even stepped into the Casino the entire cruise just for these photos.

 

IMG_2962_zpsapai05mk.jpg

 

Continuing forward is the absolutely gorgeous Martinis Bar where the pianoman plays nightly. This is a gorgeous space, much much more elegant than the Schooner Bar on Royal ships. Wearing a formal black suit/tie nightly, the pianoman was no better in quality to anyone I've ever seen on RCL, playing mostly classics and not venturing to far from the standards. Have any of you ever witnessed the brilliant Matt Yee on Royal? I wonder how he'd do on a ship like this! ... now there's a pianoman entertainer extraordinaire. Btw, no tip jar visible on top of the piano, nor inuendo/small talk of such.

 

DSC05160_zpstrdkitq0.jpg

 

This is a wonderful bar with superb furniture and finishing. I loved spending time in here and when the pianoman took a break, we'd head on over to the Grand Bar to listen to the live String Quartet before dinner. Those of you who know Oceania well, the art in these spaces are awesome, like a gallery of fine art... sculptures, glass art, paintings... of the highest quality. I took individual photos of some of the art all over the ship

 

IMG_2959_zpspmnwksv1.jpg

 

DSC05169_zpstpou2wwr.jpg

 

And now we're back out to deck 6 of the Grand staircase with the main elevator shaft and reception area below on deck 5.... that is basically all there is for decks 5 & 6. I'll have theatre pictures another day when not being used for embarkation

 

DSC05172_zps7kikglq2.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With still plenty of time before muster, we continued our exploration of the ship by heading up to the highest deck 15 to check out Horizons. For my RCL friends following along, this is Oceania's version of the Viking Crown Lounge on Vision Class with a central dance area, bar and seating. The difference i that this space is at least twice as big as Vision Class Viking crown and it also faces forward on the Marina overtop the private Canyon Ranch Spa Deck and the bow of the ship.

 

DSC05177_zpsqcei6akz.jpg

 

This space was well used on sailaways (and I assume sail-ins) with a great view looking forward through the floor-to-ceiling glass

 

DSC05178_zps35lkcszw.jpg

 

DSC05179_zpsiaupercm.jpg

 

 

Besides the theatre, this lounge was a main focal point for the ship's events such as our Meet&Mingle, the Captain's reception, various dances, and a couple of shows. On day 12 I'll show you pictures of the famous daily 4pm tea which is served here.

 

DSC05181_zpsnlenckgt.jpg

 

And yes the dance floor was pretty full a couple of the nights.... the ship simply did not shut down at 9pm like an old age home.

The band which played was really good actually, a typical 4 piece band playing cover tunes much like at the Royal Caribbean Centrum, and of equal if not better quality. Overall, the live music around the ship was really great on this sailing:

 

  • The Oceania orchestra: equal to Royal, you would not tell the difference if they were on the Royal stage
  • Pianoman: equal to Royal, same though as above
  • Live dance band: equal to Royal, again same thought as above
  • String Quartet: far superior to anything I've ever seen on Royal

So much for poor nightly entertainment/live music in comparison to Royal

The only thing Royal has that is so much farther superior is Boleros on Oasis/Quantum Classes and the amazing live Latino bands

 

DSC05182_zpstyr0eq72.jpg

 

And here's the Horizon's Bar. Every Bar had a couple of special drinks that they serve specifically in that bar (like on the Royal larger ships). Here it was no different. There were great options on this ship, and I found the drink quality to be superior by a mile than on the Royal ships with the much higher grade of alcohol used to mix drinks (ie. mixed drinks posted on the menu called for Grey Goose for example, not just "vodka" like on Royal menus where Finlandia (I think) is still the norm. Hendricks is specifically called for in the menu for their "Hendricks Lemon Ginny" (not Cheapo Beef Eater like on Royal). Just a couple of examples.

 

And the prices you may ask? The Hendricks Lemon Ginny is $11.50 a la carte... MUCH better than Royal, even on this upper scale cruise line. Think of the wine selections as equal to Royal's "Vintages" venue all over the ship, with various great offerings available all over the ship by the glass.

 

DSC05185_zpsjswl0zfp.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So here's where things take one of the very few major negative turns on this ship.... I always knew Oceania did not have the bells and whistles like my beloved Royal ships. Even the small Splendour/Legend had a great back sports deck with a great mini-golf area and decent rock climbing wall. Well, heading outside from Horizons, we decided to head up to the very top of deck 16 to check out what's up there. Yikes.... a small paddle board court and a sorry excuse for a mini-golf area. Considering the class and style of the rest of the ship, I believe a little bit better vision (and just a little more capital) could've been used here on this deck. One and done... never came up to this deck again.

 

DSC05188_zpsaypfpfpn.jpg

 

On another note, this brings up the "siteline" issue which I've brought up in past threads. This ship would be awful to watch sail-in from the deck as well as the deck below at the Canyon Ranch. Photos and/or video through the large glass panels is a major negative for me on this ship. This made my balcony very valuable for this sailing. For those of you who have not seen my RCL Serenade Adriatic review, here's a link for the sail-in photos in Venice....

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?p=44387231&highlight=St.+Mark%27s+Square+sail-in+to+Venice#post44387231

Note my unobstructed "glass-less" vantage point that I and all my fellow cruisers had on various decks. No way you can get these photos and video with clarity from Marina's top decks looking forward. The sitelines on Royal facing forward are much better... on the sides and rear (The Terrace) are equal.

 

DSC05189_zpsyccesdhf.jpg

 

So much for deck 16... we headed down to check the gym directly below on deck 14. Great space with view, modern equipment, really nice Aerobics/spin class room where they held various sign-up classes daily

 

DSC05194_zpsg4gqysoz.jpg

 

DSC05196_zpsi4swgvet.jpg

 

DSC05197_zpsz2rpbby4.jpg

 

IMG_2324_zps3vfonwy7.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Continuing on deck 14 forward, we headed into the Canyon Ranch Spa to check things out. We did our walk around of this deck and did not feel any more or less impressed than anything we've experienced on Royal. There is a dedicated acupuncturist as well as other offerings, including daily spa specials just like on Royal.

 

91c98d4c-1f08-4974-b72e-d3b03e8d893d_zpssi7kmly5.png

 

DSC05198_zpsfosgd8lq.jpg

 

Heading out to the Canyon Ranch Spa deck, it is only accessible with a Concierge and higher stateroom card. What this space provides is peace and quiet away from the main pool deck with no liver music or direct bar access, great views that the pool area cannot provide and private entry to the spa. There's a hot tub there too, but no pool.

 

DSC05200_zpsnjftwcig.jpg

 

The rest of the spa and rooms are very nice... I'm not a spa person so this area was not gaining my intention positively nor negatively. Another one and done for this cruise, never stepping into this area again (including the private deck area)

 

DSC05204_zps87dec1ys.jpg

 

DSC05205_zpsw0wr8yqu.jpg

 

That's it for tonight folks. I'll hope to finish embarkation tomorrow so that I can proceed with the ports soon. I'll also have more pictures from within the ship as I go through daily life on Marina.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great job on your review, truly enjoying your perspective. Thank you for making the time to do this!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Q&A: Cruise Insurance with Steve Dasseos of TripInsuranceStore.com
      • Holiday Exchange - Jingle and Mingle 2019
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...