P&O Cruises Iona - Restaurants and Bars

Steph - Cruise with Amber

Join me on a deck-by-deck breakdown and a virtual tour of all the bars and restaurants that are available on P&O cruises newest cruise ship Iona, the largest cruise ship ever built for the UK market. 

IONA Restaurants
Images courtesy of P&O Cruises

What restaurants are on Iona?

Iona features a staggering total of 30 bars and restaurants, and with so much on offer, it could be hard to choose where to visit first. Thankfully (and helpfully) P&O have split Iona’s dining, bar and café venues into different categories – each offering a perfect solution to match any mood or occasion.

  • Fresh and informal venues are perfect when you need a quick pick-me-up or fancy relaxing for an hour with a book and a long drink. From buffets to poolside snack bars, these casual spots are the perfect places to stop by and tuck into a tasty bite. Options are available all day and even late at night.
  • Contemporary flavours venues offer light bites to decadent dinners, with a menu for every appetite and destination-inspired dishes. Again, these are available throughout the day.
  • Served with entertainment venues are where to head to if you want to soak up some live music – either while enjoying your favourite drink or feasting on sumptuous three-course dinner.
  • Chic and special venues have the wow factor and certainly hit the mark when it comes to celebrating a special occasion. These venues boast chic surroundings, flawless service and delicately crafted, delectable dishes.
  • Family favourite venues include lounges and deck bars closest to where the fun is happening – you’ll usually find these around or close to the pool areas. These venues offer great food and good times for all the clan.

P&O Cruises Iona Restaurant and Bar tour

Iona Deck Plan
Photo courtesy of P&O Cruises

I have studied the deck plans, photos and artists renderings to try to give you the best tour possible without actually stepping aboard. 

At this point in time, I was hoping to be able to bring you a full tour of Iona, along with an aft suite tour (having sailed on her in August 2020 to the Norwegian fjords) and an aft cabin tour (after our sailing in October to northern Europe). Sadly, plans had to change – but I promise I will still bring you the full tour at some point in the near future when I finally get to sail on her. Until then, here’s something to whet your appetite. 

So, let’s start the tour at the very top and work our way down on a delicious journey through the ship.

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Deck 18

Beachcomber Bar

Location: Forward
Category: Family Favourites

As you’ll see from the deck plan, this bar is right next to the Beachcomber pool and is situated at the front of the ship. It looks like quite a sunny spot with the added benefit of being somewhat sheltered from the wind but still open to the sun from the sky deck above. Perfect.

This bar is also right next to the Retreat and I’m guessing this might be the adults only pool if it’s similar to the layout on Britannia. Thanks to William Kruis (@williamkruis) for these fantastic aerial shots taken whilst Iona made a brief call in Rotterdam in January 2021. This base also looks spectacular when lit up in the evening.

Panorama Bar

Location: Mid Aft/Aft
Category: Family Favourites

Continuing on deck 18, if you prefer to be high up and have views of the wake then the Panorama bar is a perfect option. From the initial artists impression, photos and animations, it looks like there will be plenty of shaded places to sit whilst you admire spectacular views. It is also located right next to one of the highest pools (the Panorama pool) aboard the ship if you fancy a quick dip.

The Panorama bar is also closest to the sports court, so it looks like the perfect place to cool off with a refreshing drink after you’ve won that game of tennis or football. Or alternatively if you wish, just bypass the tennis of football altogether and go straight to the cool drink.

Let’s head down now to deck 17 for some more culinary goodies.

Deck 17

The Epicurean

Location: Forward (Port)
Category: Chic and Special

Ah – The Epicurean; expect classic dining with a modern British twist all in a very sophisticated and elegant setting where you don’t feel rushed. We all know that the Epicurean restaurants aboard the P&O fleet are something special. But it looks like Iona has brought us a whole new level of special.

On Iona, the flavours of the fjords will also spring to life in The Epicurean. This is a six-course taster menu created by award-winning chef Kjartan Skjelde. using seasonal, local produce, to deliver a Nordic fine dining experience on board.

It’s also pleasing to see that Eric Lanlard’s Afternoon Tea is taking up residency once again in The Epicurean – so we can all relax that we won’t be denied the chance to indulge in a platter of beautifully presented decedent sweet and savoury treats from the master pâtissier himself.

The Crow’s Nest

Location: Forward
Category: Chic and Special

The Crow’s nest on Iona is the place to go to savour glorious ocean views and classic cocktails with a twist. By day, the mood is going to be restful for reading and relaxing. Then, by night, things take a sophisticated turn for night owls with a live pianist and a stylish late-lounge ambiance.

Sky Bar

Sky Bar on P&O Cruises IONA Sky dome on P&O Cruises IONA
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Midship (Port)
Category: Family Favourites

The Sky Bar is located on the mezzanine level in Iona’s signature Sky Dome. You’ll have already seen the Sky Bar featured in some of the first artists’ renderings. This bar looks like a wonderful place during the day to sit back and relax or to grab a delicious refreshing cocktail or cool drink whilst alternating between hot tub and swimming pool.

As the sun sets in the stars come out, the stunning two-deck glass Sky Dome takes on another life as the perfect venue for an evening of live entertainment and a sizzling party atmosphere. Come here to experience two new live shows, ‘Rise’ and ‘Triboo’ which have been specially created to reflect their performance environment which provides panoramic views of sea and sky.

Deck 16

Taste 360

Taste 350 on P&O Cruises IONA
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Midship (Port)
Category: Fresh and Informal

One of Iona’s signature venues and located in the Sky Dome directly under the Sky Bar, Taste 360 is a street food style dining experience on deck. 

Local Food Heroes have created exclusive dishes which will be rotated according to Iona’s itineraries for example José Pizarro has created exciting Spanish flavours for Iona’s holidays to Spain, Portugal and the Canary Islands. On Iona’s summer holidays to the Norwegian Fjords, Marte Marie will create traditional Norwegian, home-style food.

Crystal Bar

Crystal Bar on P&O Cruises IONA
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Midship (Port)
Category: Family Favourites

You can find the Crystal Bar directly opposite Taste 360. You will find a hub of different bars and dining options within Iona’s Sky Dome and you could quite easily base yourself here all day. Whether you wish to grab a morning coffee with a spectacular sea view or pop in for a relaxing lunch with a side order of vitamin sea or even head up here as the sun goes down for your evening entertainment, the Sky Dome is a venue which transforms throughout the day.

The Sky Dome has a relaxing and natural feel with a variety of seating options – whether you decide to sprawl out on a sun lounger or catch up with a few chapters of your favourite book in a reclining chair. Above all else you are never far from an array of dining options and bars.

Laguna Bar & Sundaes

Location: Midship (Starboard)
Category: Family Favourites

Located next to Taste 360 in the Sky Dome, the Laguna Bar and Sundaes is the place to go for a sweet treat serving a full selection of premium ice cream. As the sun goes down, Iona’s covered Sky Dome ensures that this is also the perfect spot for pre-dinner drinks on Gala Evenings, whatever the weather.

Beach House

Location: Midship (Starboard)
Category: Fresh and Informal

Similar to other P&O ships in the fleet, the Beach House is an area of the Horizon Restaurant which transforms into a fun and informal Select Dining venue each evening (a small cover charge applies). Offering relaxed dining, this family favourite always gets the thumbs up.

Inspired by Caribbean and Southern American classics with a playful twist, the Beach House always offers hearty dishes and comfort-food favourites such as hanging kebabs, sizzling cook-your-own steaks and delectable chocolate fondues.

Horizon Restaurant

Horizon Restaurant on P&O Cruises IONA
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Midship and Mid Aft
Category: Fresh and Informal

Whatever you fancy, whatever the time of day, this all-day dining venue offers an incredible variety of food from home and around the world to suit every appetite and dietary need. The Horizon Restaurant offers a spacious, elegant and relaxed space for breakfast lunch and dinner, with ocean vistas on the side.

The Horizon Restaurant is also the venue you will find the kids tea which is located in a specially reserved area of the restaurant, available exclusively to younger guests serving firm favourites each evening from 5 PM.

Grab & Go

Grab and go on P&O Cruises IONA
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Aft
Category: Fresh and Informal

Grab and go is a fantastic option for a quick bite to eat if you don’t want to waste time queueing up in the horizon restaurant for lunch. Located in between the Infinity pool and the Sports Court, you can quickly pop in and take your pick of a mouth-watering array of self-service snacks such as satisfying sandwiches, fresh salads, and light yogurt and fruit pots.

This is an ideal and relaxed option which gives you more time to soak up the sun and admire the panoramic sea views on deck. As the Grab & Go is also located near the lifts, there is nothing stopping you popping up here to grab something to take back to your cabin to enjoy a quiet lunch whilst relaxing on your private balcony on a sea day.

Infinity Bar

Infinity bar infinity pool on IONA
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Aft (Starboard)
Category: Family Favourites

Located next to the infinity pool, this poolside bar offers a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and is perfectly placed for al fresco refreshment when relaxing by the infinity pool.

Located near to the Grab & Go and the Horizon Restaurant, this is likely to be an excellent venue to base yourself on a sunny sail away. In the evening it also acts as an amazing location to watch the sunset over the wake with a sundowner from an elevated vantage point.

Deck 8

Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

We now head down a few decks past the accommodation on decks 15 to 9 and arrive in Iona’s Grand Atrium on Deck 8: promenade deck.

The Promenade deck is mainly splitting into two sections: the first section at the front of the ship is given over to accommodation and here you will find cabins numbered between 8101 to 8341. Then from midship to the aft you will find a range of restaurants, cafe bars and a main dining room.

The Keel & Cow

Location: Midship
Category: Contemporary Flavours

The Keel and Cow offers a contemporary take on gastropub dishes, located on deck eight in the Grand Atrium. It serves food from breakfast until late. This is the place to dine if you like gastro food paired with craft ales and draft and bottled beers.

Expect to work your way through mouth-watering gastropub meals including burgers, fish and chips, pie and mash and prime steak from the dry ageing fridge along with Iona’s new signature burger The Prime Minister, billed as the best burger at sea.

If you don’t fancy the formality of the main dining room then this is an excellent choice (a small cover charge applies) and I expect it will serve an ample variety of delicious dishes to keep you interested throughout a seven-night cruise.

Sindhu & Sindhu Bar

Location: Midship (Starboard)
Category: Contemporary Flavours

A firm favourite on the P&O cruises fleet of ships. I’m so happy that this restaurant has been included on Iona. Sindhu never fails to provide a thrill for your taste buds. Here you can count on the usual rich, stylish and sumptuous decor accompanied by contemporary Indian cuisine.

One of the things I love so much about Sindhu is that regardless of whether you like your Indian cuisine hot or more delicately spiced, Sindhu always delivers gorgeous platters. One visit may not be enough.

I’m also hoping that Sindhu continues to offer embarkation day and lunchtime deals. Sindhu will be a tiffin-style lunch available on sea days (a tiffin is a type of light teatime meal served around 3 PM). I can’t wait to try this, as it sounds very exciting and I’m sure the presentation in Tiffin style carriers is going to be spot on.

Ripples

Location: Midship (Port)
Category: Family Favourites

Featuring Snowflake Luxury Gelato, expect to find a blend of British and Italian flavours in traditional cones with a myriad of toppings to choose from. Visit this venue to sample a Gelato afternoon tea or if that doesn’t take your fancy you may wish to opt for cookies and ice cream sundaes. Whatever you choose, I’m sure there will be many return visits here during your time on board if you have a sweet tooth.

The Quays

Location: Mid Aft (Port)
Category: Fresh and Informal

If you’re after an informal dining option which includes an array of eateries and restaurants, then the Quays is the place to head to.

The Quays will serve family friendly food whether you’re after a quick snack, a light lunch or an informal dinner. This sounds as if it will be quite a hub for socialising and meeting up with your fellow passengers.

The Quays promises a “beachfront promenade vibe” and I’m quite excited by this as it sounds like a wonderful place to spend the day watching the world go by. As there is direct access onto the promenade deck this will be the perfect place on a sea day. Take your pick from:

  • The Boardwalk Diner, offering, American classics and Southern soul food, or
  • Fusion, perfect for lovers of authentic Asian flavours, or head to
  • Hook Line and Vinegar if the sea air has given you you a craving for traditional British fish and chips.

The Olive Grove

Location: Mid Aft (Starboard)
Category: Fresh and Informal

If you love your Mediterranean food, then the Olive Grove is definitely a venue you should put high up on your list.

Located within the Quays, but on the starboard side, It promises to serve moreish Mediterranean meals all day long. I particularly like the sound of the Moroccan lamb tagine, along with grazing boards of tasty regional specialities and classic Spanish paella.

The Club House

Location: Aft
Category: Fresh and Informal

The Club House is a versatile and fun space. In the afternoons, it’s an ideal spot for families. Expect games entertainment and even the occasional game show.

This space also boasts bar areas leading to the outdoor aft end of the Promenade Deck. When the sun goes down, The Club House becomes Iona’s late-night venue, offering entertainment and dancing in a modern ‘live lounge’ environment with Iona’s house band, Pulse

The Sunset Bar

Location: Aft
Category: Family Favourites

The name says it all really, we all love a sunset bar aboard a P&O cruise ship. Located right at the aft end of the Promenade deck, it’s the perfect spot to refresh yourself with a cocktail served to your table at any time of the day after all that promenading. Alternatively head here in the evening for a delicious sundowner as you watch the sunset.

Let’s pop back inside and head down another level to the Parade Deck on deck 7.

Deck 7

Brodies

Location: Mid Forward (Starboard)
Category: Served with Entertainment

Another favourite on P&O cruises fleet is Brodies bar which is the place to go to for a sociable pub atmosphere. Serving a selection of British and international bottled beers, ciders and real ales, head here if you like your crafted brews.

You’ll also find a great selection on tap and there are plenty of wines to choose from to. As usual there are a range of traditional nibbles and snacks available to accompany your drink. I’m sure there will be a pub quiz or two thrown in for good measure. Brodies is also a great venue attached to the casino.

The Glass House

Location: Midship
Category: Contemporary Flavours

If you’re more of a wine connoisseur then you might want to head to the Glass House instead. I have never heard anyone complain about the variety and quality the food they have been served in the Glass House. The small cover charge presents exceptional value for money and I fully recommend you visit this venue at least once on your cruise.

Choose a glass of one of the specially selected wines, hand-picked wine expert Olly Smith to accompany your delicious food and sit back in this prime spot in the Grand Atrium to watch daring aerial artists perform ‘Dream’; something we’ve never seen in any other Glass House across the whole P&O cruises fleet before.

Another exciting addition to the Glass House is the chance to experience an authentic tapas menu created by acclaimed chef José Pizarro which will be available on Iona’s cruises to Spain, Portugal and the Canary Islands.

Coral Restaurant

Location: Aft
Category: Main Dining Room

One of Iona’s four main dining rooms. All four main dining rooms aboard Iona are freedom dining offering fantastic flexibility for this formal dining option during your cruise. Expect wonderful wake views from this restaurant.

Another exciting addition to all the main restaurants is that on holidays to the fjords, passengers can enjoy authentic, home-style Norwegian dishes created by Marte Marie Forsberg.

And it seems formal night will have a bit of a makeover too. With “The Chef’s Table” on Celebration Nights (I’m guessing this is Iona’s rebranded formal night?)

On Celebration Nights we are instructed to don our finery for an exclusive evening of fine dining. Be prepared to experience a menu which celebrates British and regional cuisines created by Marco Pierre White and Eric Lanlard, and wine selected by Olly Smith. Sounds like a winning combination to me.

Deck 6

Deck 6 includes a yet another astounding array of places to sip, socialize and dine your heart out with not one, but three main dining rooms, and much more.

Pearl Restaurant

Main dining room on P&O Cruises IONA Pearl restaurant
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Aft
Category: Main Dining Room

The Pearl restaurant is located at the aft and situated directly below the Coral restaurant on deck seven. Glancing at the deck plan, this promises to provide yet more breath-taking wake views.

Aqua Restaurant

Main dining room on P&O Cruises IONA Aqua restaurant
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Mid Aft (Port)
Category: Main Dining Room

Another main dining room situated on the port side of the ship. From the deck plan, this seems to be a more intimate venue compared to the larger Pearl and Coral restaurants but nonetheless is a dining venue that comes with oodles of sea views.

It’s perfect place to dine if you’ve just enjoyed a cocktail in Anderson’s as it is conveniently located right next door. How thoughtful.

Opal Restaurant

Opal Restaurant Main dining room on P&O Cruises IONA Coral restaurant
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Mid Aft (Starboard)
Category: Main Dining Room

If you prefer your restaurant on the starboard side (and you’re perfectly entitled to) then head to the Opal restaurant. Perhaps opt for an early supper before heading to watch a film with the rest of the family, as Iona’s Ocean Studios is conveniently located right next door.

Anderson’s Bar

Location: Midship (Port)
Category: Chic and Special

Ok, so you know that Iona will have the first Gin distillery at sea, right? You know you have the chance to make your own gin on board too, right? If you don’t believe me, then head to Anderson’s Bar where you can see Columba (Iona’s gin still) in all its shiny, copper glory, distilling gin right before your very eyes.

If that wasn’t enough, to tempt you, Anderson’s Bar also boasts a menu of stylish tipples, in intimate surroundings. It’s the perfect spot to hide away with a perfect serve Marabelle Gin (exclusive to Iona) and a good book during the day or for predinner G&Ts. Or both.

The 710 Club

710 club on P&O Cruises IONA Gary barlow club on iona
Image Courtesy of P&O Cruises

Location: Midship (Starboard)
Category: Served with Entertainment

The 710 club is Gary Barlow’s creative vision. If you’re after a sophisticated bar with a vintage vibe serving stylish cocktails, then make a beeline here.

The 710 Club promises low-lit ambiance and pure escapism which oozes a cool (and by all accounts a killer smoked cherry negroni). It’s a chance to immerse yourself in an intimate music bar billed at “the most exciting live music venue at sea”, with an eclectic range of performances, curated to appeal to British music lovers.

Vistas

Location: Midship (Port)
Category: Fresh and Informal

If you would like stunning sea view with your latte or an endless blue horizon with your tea. Then head to Vistas. From the artist’s renderings released so far it’s very clear to sea (sorry) why it’s named Vistas.

On top of all that there’s more sweet treats from Eric Lanlard, pop-up performances and daring displays from aerial artists. Located in the very heart of the ship this is bound to be a buzzing location all day. Stop here for your morning coffee or relaxing pit stop during the day or even an invigorating after dinner coffee.
You can also expect pop-up entertainment throughout the day and aerial circus performances during the evening.

Emerald Bar

Location: Midship (Starboard)
Category: Contemporary Flavours

The emerald bar promises “Glamour, good times and glorious exploratory cocktails”. As this bar is also located in the Grand Atrium, The Emerald Bar might also be the perfect place to experience ‘Dream’, an evening’s entertainment billed as an immersive experience blurring the line between magic and reality. A perfect accompaniment as you sip your expertly crafted daiquiri.

Limelight Club

Location: Mid Forward (Starboard)
Category: Served with Entertainment

It’s very pleasing to discover that this wonderful supper-club venue is also featured on Iona. If you’ve ever had the chance to sail on P&O Cruises Britannia and spent an evening in the Limelight club then you know that it’s good news that this firm favourite is also going to be part of the dining and entertainment experience onboard Iona.

After daytime dance classes have finished, The Limelight Club transforms into an evening venue just for adults. We’re promised wonderful entertainment and a unique dining experience comprised of a welcome drink and a themed multi-course menu served at intervals throughout the show.

When the performance is over, The Limelight Club transforms yet again into a lively late-night hotspot. What a versatile little place!

 

So there you have it, all the dining options, cafes and bars available on P&O Cruises Iona. With so many options, you may need to book more than a week on board.

 

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THANKS FOR READING 

Hi, I’m Steph I’ve travelled around the world, backpacked across Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii and spent over 100 nights at sea. Having grown up by the coast, the sea is my passion and now I enjoy exploring the world on cruise ships with my family. Subscribe to my YouTube Channel to keep up to date with my ever expanding set of port guides to inspire you on your travels plus money-saving cruise tips, ship tours and cabin reviews.

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