Saturday, January 7, 2023

Caribbean Cruising on Riviera

The others boarded Miami’s Cruise Terminal J at 11 am and took nearly 90 minutes to actually get on board the ship. The only time left for us was 2 pm, and we were aboard in about 15 minutes, still in time to meet up and enjoy a bite of lunch in the Terrace Café. Lesson learned.

Oceania’s Riviera has just returned from an extensive dry dock refurbishment and it shows. The new colors are much lighter and to us very pleasing.

Most staterooms have a new larger shower without the tub and separate shower. Oceania has retained a fee of the old style arrangement for those few, Kathy among them, who desire a bathtub, and we snagged one.

It was a beautiful night as we sailed out of Miami.

With Kathy’s brothers along, the talk is of food even more than usual, and Oceania is a great line for foodies.

Oceania’s two larger (1200 passenger) ships have four specialty restaurants in addition to the Grand Dining Room and the Terrace Café buffet. They include Toscana (Italian), Polo (steak house), Red Ginger (Asian fusion), and Jacques (French). While there’s no extra charge for those, each stateroom is entitled only up to one visit to each inncruises up to 23 days long.

On shorter cruises such as this 10-day Caribbean trip, it’s usually harder to pick up extra nights. We did manage Polo on the first night, but it was a challenge.

The excsrgot was a new presentation, not our favorite but still tasty.

Kathy and Brian split an excellent Porterhouse.

The lobster was adequate but not sensational, according to Greg. It’s a long way from Maine to Miami.

Our second night there wasn’t a specialty reservation to be had, and we dined at the Terrace Café out on the back deck on an eclectic combination of pizza, sushi, spiny lobster and steak.

Last night we had a reservation in Toscana and enjoyed a superb meal with great service. Most of us started with their great version of Beef Carpaccio.

From there onward we chose everything from Osso Buco to veal chops.

Today we docked at Basseterre, St. Kits after two windy but pleasant sea days.

Those bright Caribbean colors are beckoning us, but Kathy is still fighting a cold and we two won’t be venturing far. Enjoying the 80F / 27C weather will be our main objective today.

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