I'm booked on the Regatta for the Transatlantic cruise next Nov, and was interested in others experiences on this cruise. Has anyone tried the pre-cruise stay in Barcelona thru Oceania? Which hotel? Was it worth the cost?
Also, I'm confirmed in the PH, on the waiting list for Vista. Has anyone been "moved up" from a WL? My TA said there was a good possibility, since many people book on spec due to Oceania's full refund on reservations.
I know it's quite far in advance, but I'm very excited about the experience, since my only other cruise was on the Disney Magic. That was great, by the way.
Any info is appreciated
Welcome to this Transatlantic cruise and I think you will find it most enjoyable.
We have been on Oceania for some time and booked this crossing as soon as we saw Jacques Pepin (Oceania's Culinary Director) would be on board. It was fully booked, but after taking a wait-list, we were cleared.
A few years ago, we took an Oceania crossing from Barbados to Barcelona and found it absolutely perfect in all ways. There will be some days at sea, so plan on activities to keep you busy or whatever pleases you.
Barcelona is a fascinating city - perhaps you can arrive early to enjoy it...
You'll have a wonderful time. We were on the 2007 Barcelona to Miami transit and had a great time. We also spent 2 nights in the AC Diplomatic, one the Oceania-arranged hotels.
Here's some observations. The hotel was clean and well located in Barcelona. It was really set up for business travelers and not tourists, but that really wasn't a problem. Having experienced the Oceania-arranged hotel stay, the next time I would probably arrange my own hotel and transportation and save some money.
The one thing we didn't plan on was the weather. This was our fifth transatlantic cruise and the weather was considerably cooler than I expected. I was expecting temperatures in the low 70s and the temperatures averaged in the upper 50s. Also, the ocean was very rough. The roughness of the ocean is a crap shoot, the temperatures are another matter -- poor planning on my part. The ship, the staff, the food, the service, ... could not have been better.
Barcelona is such a comfortable city, with so many good hotels, reliable taxis and excellent service personnel that I don't see why it would be necessary to pay the premium prices for a hotel arranged by Oceania. We booked the Hilton for free on points, but there are lots of options and it would be tough to go very wrong.
We were on the 2007 Regatta crossing from Barcelona to Miami as well, and it was a great cruise. There was a 30-hour stretch of pretty wicked weather--by far the worst we've experienced in four crossings--but what can you do? It's the ocean, after all, and a relatively small ship. Fortunately, we don't get seasick. Lots of busted crockery and furnishings, though.
In addition to the good things Howard White had to say should be added the overall ambience created by our fellow passengers. Great bunch of folks to cross with.