One of the cruise world's most unique success stories expands their achievement with a brand new ship design.
Just by looking at the picture above you see Oceania's Marina will be a hit - it is chock-full of verandah cabins, perfect for the famous port-intensive Oceania itineraries. Read on for more details on how Marina expands upon what has made Oceania the almost cult-favorite cruise line its fans adore. There are more distinct restaurants and an invigorated focus on stateroom comfort. This adds up to the perfect cruise travel experience for the people who sail to see the world in style.
The new ship JUST finished and ready for its inaugural for Oceania Cruises, Marina, went on sale to the general public last Monday year, January 18, 2010, but the pickings will be somewhat slim for the ship's five inaugural winter voyages, since they have already been substantially booked by past guests of Oceania Cruises, who were given booking priority starting January 13, 2010.
Marina was announced at the SeaTrade convention in March, 2006, built at Fincantieri's shipyard near Genoa, Italy, and is finally ready to set sail. Oceania's loyal past guests wasted little time: In Marina's booking debut, nearly 50 percent of the 2011 winter season sailings sold in less than 12 hours, exceeding the line's previous one-day booking record by 26 percent. The ship's January 22, 2011, maiden voyage is a 13-day transatlantic cruise from Barcelona to Miami, calling at Malaga, Spain; Casablanca, Morocco; and the Canary Islands before crossing the Atlantic. Seven days at sea will give guests time to explore Marina from stem to stern. Early booking fares start at $1,999 per person, double.
But first we have the inaugural ceremonies taking place the weekend of February 5. The ship will be christened in Miami with godmother Mary Hart, the television hostess. We will be onboard from Saturday through Monday trying out various features of the ship, including the already widely celebrated restaurant, "Jacques," namesake to the chef of renown, Jacques Pepin, the Oceania executive chef since its founding.
From Miami, Marina will depart February 8, 2011 to transit the Panama Canal, visiting Cartagena, Colombia and Puntarenas, Costa Rica. The cruise includes two ports in Mexico: Puerto Chiapas, the gateway to Mayan ruins; and the popular resort Cabo San Lucas. Marina will visit Los Angeles and land at San Francisco, a new port for Oceania Cruises. The 18-day cruise is priced from $4,299 per person, double.
The ship then returns to Miami with a different Panama Canal itinerary, departing February 26. This voyage sails from San Francisco, cruising California's Pacific coast before calling at San Diego, another maiden port for the line. Guests enjoy a Latin interlude in Puerto Chiapas before transiting the Canal and making landfall at Cartagena. A stop in George Town, Grand Cayman, will offer time to rest and relax before disembarkation in Miami. Early booking fares begin at $2,499 per person, double.
Next, Marina embarks on what the line calls "the definitive Caribbean cruise." The 12-day voyage departs Miami March 16, 2010 for the British Virgin Islands before calling at St. Barts, Dominica, St. Lucia and Grand Turk. Early booking fares begin at $2,999 per person, double.
Before Marina returns to Barcelona to begin her summer season in Europe, she will sail along the U.S. Eastern Seaboard, departing Miami March 28 and visiting Savannah and Charleston before making her curtain call in New York City, where an overnight stay allows guests to visit the Great White Way. From Manhattan, the ship sails for Hamilton, Bermuda followed by five uninterrupted days at sea before visiting Funchal (Madeira Island), Portugal and Barcelona. Early booking fares begin at $2,999 per person, double.
About Oceania Marina
Marina will offer an array of elegant bars and lounges and an amazing 10 dining venues probably the most dining venues of any ship on a per person basis. Six of these restaurants are open-seating gourmet venues including Jacques, the first restaurant at sea for Chef Jacques Pépin; and Red Ginger, all at no additional charge. Pépin's namesake restaurant will draw inspiration from bistros in Paris and his home town of Lyon. "The cornerstone of any great dining experience is freshly prepared, simple dishes that are as visually pleasing on the plate as they are on the palate," according to Pépin.
Other highlights of the ship include a Bon Appétit Culinary Center and a Grand Stairway made of Lalique fine crystal. The full-service spa will be operated by the famous Canyon Ranch SpaClub.
Guest accommodations include 629 staterooms and suites, 96 percent with private verandas.
Marina will be the first ship to offer luxury suites completely appointed from the acclaimed Ralph Lauren Home collection -- from furniture and fabrics to lighting and bedding. To accomplish this industry first, the cruise line tapped New York-based Tocar, whose owner Susan Bednar Long oversaw the decoration of flagship retail stores for Polo across North America.
"We wanted the best suites on Marina to feel like a luxurious estate home and insisted on the finest craftsmanship and most talented residential designers," said Bob Binder, Oceania Cruises' president. "Tocar has designed the first suites at sea exclusively using furnishings from Ralph Lauren Home."
Reservations for Marina are now open to the general public. For more information or to order a brochure, contact a travel agent, visit www.OceaniaCruises.com or call Oceania Cruises at 800-531-5658.Riviera, the sister ship to Marina is set to appear in January, 2012. Both ships are from the Fincantieri Sestre Ponente shipyard in Genoa, Italy, at a total cost of $800 million apiece. The interior designers for all of the public spaces, suites and staterooms are a well-known (in the cruise industry) Norwegian company specializing in luxury ships, Y&S Architecture and Interior Design of Oslo. Fincantieri Shipyards is designing the superstructure.
The new ships will feature "the best of" the current ships with a more refined atmosphere featuring rich, dark woods, Italian marble, granite countertops, wool carpets and leather furniture. The color palette is described as a mixture of dulcet tones accented by earthen and jewel tones. Here is the color palette for the new ships is below. For more infortaion on the design of Oceania Marina, see our previous article; "Oceania, Float Out" and "Oceania Next Level".
Marina Ship Facts
Oceania Class I -- Debuts Fall 2010 Oceania Class II -- Debuts Summer 2011 Guest Capacity -- 1,256 (Double Occupancy) Tonnage -- 66,000 (estimated) Builder -- Fincantieri; Sestre Ponente, Italy Length -- 782 feet Width -- 105 feet Draft -- 24 feet Cruising Speed -- 20 knots Propulsion -- Diesel Electric, 2 controllable pitch propellers Restaurants -- Six Open Seating Restaurants:
- The Grand Dining Room -- Continental Cuisine
- Polo Grill -- Steak House
- Toscana -- Gourmet Italian
- Asian Restaurant -- Asian Cuisine
- Terrace Café -- Casual Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Accommodations -- 628 Guest Staterooms and Suites:
- 4 Owner's Suites
- 6 Vista Suites
- 12 Oceania Suites
- 120 Penthouse Suites
- 440 Veranda Staterooms
- 20 Ocean View Staterooms
- 26 Inside Staterooms
- Horizons -- Observation lounge and nightclub
- Sports Deck
- Spa and Fitness Center
- The Patio
- Polo Grill -- Classic Steakhouse
- Toscana -- Gourmet Italian Restaurant
- Guest Suites
- Culinary Arts Center
- Enrichment Center
- Waves Bar
- Swimming Pool and Jacuzzis
- Waves Grill & Milkshake Bar
- Private Dining Rooms, Wine Cellar and Veranda
- Terrace Café -- casual buffet restaurant
Decks 11 through 7:
- Guest Staterooms and Suites
- Upper Hall
- Card Room
- Grand Bar
- Grand Dining Room -- Continental cuisine
- Main Lounge
- Reception Hall and Lounge
- French Restaurant -- Country French cuisine
- Asian Restaurant -- a fusion of Asian cuisines