Oceania Cruises ship Riviera nears completion

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Oceania Cruises ship Riviera nears completion

 Oceania Cruises has announced that their new cruise ship Riviera is almost structurally complete and is just weeks away from being floated out.

Riviera will sail from her dry-dock at Genoa's Fincantieri shipyard to the outfitting pier in July 2011. After her successful float-out, thousands of contractors will start the finishing work, such as installing her hand-crafted interiors that will feature glass by Lalique, interiors from Ralph Lauren Home and suites by renowned American interior designer Dakota Jackson.

The 1250-guest Riviera, due to launch in April 2012, will be identical to her sister ship Marina. She will feature the same enrichment facilities, including the revolutionary 'Bon Appétit Culinary Center,' the only hands-on cookery school of its kind at sea, with individual workstations and tuition by professional chefs, and the 'Artist Loft,' where art instruction and digital photography is offered to guests. She joins the other ships in the Oceania Cruises fleet, Insignia, Nautica and Regatta.

Riviera will also offer ten dining venues, including the gourmet restaurants and cafes found on Oceania Cruises' existing fleet -

 The ten dining venues on Riviera, and Marina

1.      The Grand Dining Room - Tuxedo-clad wait staff serve a six-course menu in a classic setting reminiscent of a five-star restaurant at one of Europe's grandest hotels. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

2.      Toscana - Three, illuminated etched-glass panels provide a dramatic backdrop to savory specialities, many of them family recipes handed down from Oceania Cruises' staff and crew. Open for dinner, reservations suggested.

3.      Polo Grill - Plush and supple leather upholstery, a rich palette of crimson, gold and green, and gold-edged mahogany wall panels evoke the glamour of a vintage Hollywood steakhouse. Fine cuts of Prime, dry-aged beef, as well as chops and fresh seafood, are featured. Open for dinner, reservations suggested.

4.      Jacques - The first-ever restaurant at sea for its namesake, internationally renowned chef Jacques Pépin, draws inspiration from fabled brasseries of Paris and his hometown of Lyon. Open for dinner, reservations suggested.

5.      Red Ginger - Thai, Japanese and Vietnamese flavours are showcased in a contemporary setting that features three Buddhas carved from a single piece of backlit glass as a dramatic centerpiece. Open for dinner, reservations suggested.

6.      Terrace Café - Shades of burgundy, burnt orange, gold and lemon create a bright and pleasant ambiance or guests may dine al fresco. Regional delicacies and sumptuous buffets are served for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

7.      Waves - This relaxed, open-air bistro serves gourmet burgers, swordfish, chicken and other grilled items, and features a salad bar and homemade ice cream bar. Open for lunch, weather permitting.

8.      Baristas - This coffee bar adjoining the library is the place throughout the day to enjoy Illy espresso and cappuccino, homemade biscotti and coffee cake.

9.      La Reserve by Wine Spectator - La Reserve is an intimate venue that hosts wine tastings and seven-course pairing dinners with premium wines selected in consultation with Wine Spectator magazine editors. Extra charge for wines; reservations required.

10. Privée - An exclusive private dining room that offers the ultimate Chef's Table. Eight fortunate guests can create a personalised menu featuring such specialities as Kobe beef, Brittany lobsters, foie gras, caviar and truffles. Room charge is $1,000. Open select evenings, reservations required. 

Comfort is assured throughout Riviera, and, as with all ships in the Oceania Cruises' fleet Riviera's guests will sleep soundly on the line's trademark Prestige Tranquillity Bed. Each mattress in every grade of accommodation will be constructed with 400 encapsulated springs, in seven zones, topped by two inches of memory foam, and further covered with a 'pillow-top' cushion, filled with gel and wrapped in chamomile-infused fibre. The beds will be dressed with 1,000-thread-count, Egyptian cotton linens and a plush, down comforter.

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