Oriana has a new look

2012 is a special year. Not only is it the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the London Olympic games but also the 175th anniversary of P&O cruises. I have recently visited the unveiling of the newly refurbished 1,880 passenger Oriana in Southampton at the beginning of her 100+ day World Cruise. The ship will now be adult only and there have been 27 cabins added increasing the capacity by 52. Facilities have been altered in order to accommodate extra persons such as adding extra seating to the main dining room. Of special interest to me was the redecorated spa with subtle decor, treatment rooms, heated lounge chairs, stream room and sauna, it was a delectable space for relaxation. The Italian restaurant, Sorrento, has been added, as well as a Marco Pierre White’s Ocean Grill. In fact, Marco Pierre White was on hand to give us a sneak preview of the cuisine that guests will enjoy for a mere £12.95 pp cover charge. Our lunch started with Deep-Fried Soft Shell Crab and a sublime Cream Cauliflower Soup with Smoked Paprika Straws. But the piece de resistance was the Surf and Turf main course with Casterbridge 28-Day Dry-Aged Fillet Steak and Garlic King Prawn with Bérnaise Sauce, Triple-Cooked Hand Cut Chips, Field Mushrooms, Crispy Onions and Vine Roasted Cherry Tomatoes. All this was followed by a cheese course with a gorgeous Winchester Mature and Brie de Meaux and a few others.