Five Things to Know About Oceania Cruises' Sirena Cruise Ship
Best for: Foodies without kids who prefer the intimacy of a small ship
Sails: The Mediterranean, Northern Europe, Mexico, the South Pacific, Central America, South America, Panama Canal, and Australia and New Zealand
At a Glance: Oceania purchased its newest ship in 2016 and transformed it with an elegant $50 million makeover that included a new look and the line’s trademark focus on elevated cuisine.
The Staterooms Are Stylish
Cabin sizes range from 143 square feet for the smallest oceanview cabin to 1,000 square feet for the six Owner’s Suites. Top-tier cabins have chic new designs: the Vista and two-bedroom Owner’s Suites are now swathed in creams and cool muted hues, and every bathroom has a big glassed-in marble shower. Smaller staterooms have been upgraded with 1,000-thread-count linens, and Oceania’s pillowy new “Ultra Tranquility” beds are heaven to sink into at night after cocktails at the revamped Horizons lounge.
The Dinners Impress
Jacques Pépin is Oceania’s culinary director, and you can find several of his dishes (steak frites, poached salmon) on the Grand Dining Room’s menu each night. Unlike on many other lines, dinners at specialty restaurants are included in the price of the voyage. Our favorite was the Asian-inspired Red Ginger, also found on Oceania’s larger vessels, Marina and Riviera; both the Thai beef salad and the miso-glazed sea bass were utterly addictive. Also a must: the Kobe meatballs at the new Tuscan Steak, a hybrid of Oceania’s Italian eatery Toscana and steak restaurant Polo Grill. Even the buffet restaurant, Terrace Grill, was excellent: the flaky chocolate croissants were motivation enough to get us out of bed early each morning.
Lunch Is a Wow, Too
Every day at lunch, the Grand Dining Room is transformed into Jacques Bistro, with a menu designed by Jacques Pépin and specials touted in chalk by the entrance. Burgers change daily—the Bombay turkey burger was divine—and the main menu is filled with classic French fare. (The escargot, herb-crusted rotisserie chicken, and lemon sole were all favorites.)
The Public Spaces Are Welcoming
When passengers aren’t exploring a new port, they’re hanging out on the pool deck’s blue-and-white striped lounge chairs, sipping a cocktail or a milkshake from Waves Grill. When the weather gets cooler, guests gravitate toward the Horizons observation lounge, where afternoon tea is served each afternoon. After dinner, passengers come back for cocktails, dancing, or karaoke.
The Spa is a Find
Though small, the light-drenched gym at the Canyon Ranch SpaClub has all the cardio and weight machines you could want—a necessity on this food-focused ship. Spa treatments are first rate: If you have jet lag, a reiki session works wonders. After your session, check out the spa’s private outdoor saltwater thalassotherapy pool, open only to spa clients and guests in concierge-level staterooms. It’s almost always empty, making it a great spot to sunbathe if you can’t find a lounge chair on the main pool deck.