Positioned in that sweet spot—a ship that’s neither too small nor too large—Oceania Vista made its debut this month in the Mediterranean, complete with a christening extravaganza featuring the ship’s godmother, celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis, and a musical performance by Harry Connick, Jr.
The seventh vessel in the Oceania Cruises’ fleet and the 20-year-old cruise line’s first new build since 2012’s Oceania Riviera, 1,200-passenger Oceania Vista features elevated contemporary design notable for a sophisticated blend of patterns and textures in a palette that’s neutral but never boring. Oceania, which increasingly refers to itself as “upper premium,” has also evolved its onboard dining and mixology concepts (including the addition of truly beautiful glassware and dinnerware in bars and restaurants) and given its spacious staterooms (most are 290 square feet) and suites (which range from 440 to 2,400 square feet) glamorous residential-inspired décor, 1,000-thread-count sheets, and some of the best-designed bathrooms at sea.
And, of course, there are the terrific island-hopping itineraries available for 2023, 2024, and early 2025.
What to Expect Onboard
What’s familiar and what’s new aboard this first Allura Class ship? While guests who’ve sailed on 1,250-guest Oceania Marina and Oceania Riviera will find many similarities in layout, the interior décor of Vista by Miami-based Studio DADO gives this new ship an enhanced feeling of modernity and spaciousness. The Grand Staircase with its floor-to-ceiling, pillar-style crystal chandelier welcomes guests, who may quickly decide that the adjacent Martinis bar on deck 6 will be favorite hangout. Reimagined with shimmering glass and photogenic gold walls featuring geometric and brand-centric “O” motifs along with sculptural chairs and sofas that manage to be both aesthetically striking and comfortable, Martinis is a social hub for pre- and post-dinner cocktails.
The Founders Bar is a new beverage concept on Vista, focused entirely on the art of the cocktail and featuring a unique selection of bourbons and ryes in addition to tableside preparation of cocktails and spirits—if only the space, which feels under-designed in comparison to the rest of the ship, was equally sophisticated. Passenger-favorite Horizons, a bar/lounge located forward on deck 14, remains the space to relax with a good book on a sea day or dance the night away to a live band or DJ.
Oceania positions itself as a cruise line for foodies and its culinary offerings are quite well-rounded, with 11 complimentary dining venues, three of them completely new and exclusive to Vista. Vegetarians and vegans, however, may find their choices are more limited on a la carte dining menus than on some other cruise lines.
Returning specialty restaurants include Polo Grill (for steakhouse cuisine), Toscana (for Italian, with two exclusive menu items by Giada De Laurentiis, including a seriously addictive Signature Capri-Inspired Lemon Spaghetti), and Red Ginger (for pan-Asian menus). New aboard Vista is Ember, a space with a vaulted brick ceiling and a contemporary American menu that’s heavy on steak and seafood (including burgers, Cobb salads, crab cakes, and lobster mac ‘n cheese), and Aquamar Kitchen, which offers wellness-focused menus for breakfast (acai berry energy bowls. avocado toast, blueberry chia yogurt) and lunch (slow-roasted organic salmon with quinoa and yellowfin tuna tacos with cabbage slaw).
Baristas, a complimentary coffee bar with sweeping ocean views and barista-served cappuccinos and lattes, adjoins the new Bakery serving French and Italian pastries (the Nutella-filled beignets are decadent). Both are close to the cozy and inviting Library, which is stocked with books and board games.
Rounding out the dining options are The Grand Dining Room, which has been redesigned with a visually captivating palette of white-on-white accented by gold tones and luxe hand-painted murals; Terrace Café, the buffet option for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; and Waves Grill, a poolside casual eatery with grilled burgers and sandwiches.
Guests can also book (at an added cost) the new Cellar Master’s Classic lunch, a six-course culinary indulgence featuring wine pairings of some of the ship’s premium vintages, including an excellent Cote de Beaune from Burgundy paired with fresh burrata and a Super Tuscan served with roasted Chateaubriand. Vista, like her sisters Marina and Riviera, also has an onboard Culinary Center, but this one is twice as large with 24 individual stations where guests can take cooking classes. Also new: an adjacent restaurant where the prepared dishes can be enjoyed.
The ship’s chic Pool Deck features shady alcoves with day beds and comfy seating, plus a pool and two hot tubs, while the Aquamar Spa Terrace (for guests who book a treatment in the Aquamar Spa or who are staying in Concierge Veranda Staterooms or Suites) is a quiet spot with sun loungers, two hot tubs, and a warm mineral-water jetted relaxation pool.
Guests with a creative streak can take lesson from the artist in residence in the Artist’s Loft. There’s also a fully equipped fitness center and a Sports Deck with a pickleball court and a mini-golf course. If you love to keep up with friends on social media or need to do some work while aboard, Vista features Starlink satellite technology and the Wi-Fi is super-fast, a rarity at sea.
Where Can You Island Hop on Vista?
Oceania Vista will spend summer 2023 cruising the Mediterranean, with most sailings already sold out or waitlisted, although there are some staterooms available on select sailings. The ship will then make an 18-night transatlantic voyage from London to New York in late August.
After Arriving in Miami in mid-October, the ship will cruise two Panama Canal transits from Miami to Los Angeles and vice versa, before embarking on a series of 10-to-22-night Caribbean itineraries. These include a 12-night Caribbean Wanderlust sailing roundtrip from Miami in November 2023 that calls on eight islands: Puerto Rico, St. Barths, Domenica, Barbados, Grenada, St. Lucia, Antigua, and the Bahamas.
Vista will return to the Med in April 2024 and one of its most island-intensive itineraries is the 20-night Mediterranean Poetry sailing (May 1–20, 2024) from Venice to Rome that visits eight islands (Hvar, Corfu, Crete, Santorini, Mykonos, Kos, Malta, and Sicily) as well as Dubrovnik, Istanbul, Athens, and other coastal ports. Two shorter options: the 11-night Cradle of the Ancients itinerary (May 21–June 1, 2024) from Rome to Jerusalem and calling on Sicily, Santorini, Rhodes, and Cyprus, and the 10-night Portal to Antiquity (Sept 3-13, 2024) from Athens to Rome and calling on Mykonos, Rhodes, Malta, and Sicily. For an island bonanza, there’s the 27-night Cultural Constellation sailing (Sept. 23–Oct. 20, 2024) from Lisbon to Athens that visits 11 islands: Madeira, La Palma, Tenerife, Lanzarote, Corsica, Sardinia, Malta, Sicily (three times: Catania, Palermo and Messina), Corfu, Santorini, and Mykonos.
If a three-month escape during the cold winter months is something you’d enjoy, Vista will sail a 90-night Ultimate Snowbird Paradise voyage (Jan. 8–April 8, 2025) that will call on more than two dozen island ports in the Caribbean—from St. Barth, Domenica, and Guadeloupe to Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao—as well as ports in Central American and Mexico.