1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2013
Navigator Cruise Review -- Feb/Mar 2013 -- Eastern Caribbean Even better than last year! We chose this Navigator cruise because we wanted to celebrate a 60th birthday in the Caribbean. Having really enjoyed our first cruise with ... Read More
Navigator Cruise Review -- Feb/Mar 2013 -- Eastern Caribbean Even better than last year! We chose this Navigator cruise because we wanted to celebrate a 60th birthday in the Caribbean. Having really enjoyed our first cruise with Regent on the Navigator the same time last year in the Western Caribbean, we really looked forward to another great time -- given our high expectations we were not disappointed with the ship, the service or the fantastic weather. The itinerary was attractive to us because we liked the idea of visiting different Caribbean islands, all with seemingly different characters and histories. We stayed over night in Miami at the Hampton by Hilton in Downtown Bicknell -- we booked it ourselves and it was superb -- a great start to our special holiday. We arranged the transfer to the cruise terminal and registration and arrival to the ship was smooth and efficient. A brief champagne reception and a chance to enjoy the facilities before our suite (1109) was announced ready -- which was not all that long. The real frustration was the additional two hours that it took for our suitcases to be delivered to our suite. We chose a Penthouse Suite A (1109) as we had booked that on the last cruise and loved it -- high up and towards the bridge -- close enough to see the captain and his senior crew maneuvering the ship in and out of the port and to hear them spot a female whale and her calf swimming off the starboard bow -- a great sight. The suite was all that we remembered -- spacious, very well equipped and tastefully furnished. That said, one small criticism last year was the lack of coffee making facilities. This has been addressed with a large, ugly and wasteful Illy coffee machine -- great coffee but it only did espresso measures so to get a long cup, eg. americano, you had to press the button once every minute and 5 times to filter the coffee. Our butler, Immanuel, was great -- personable, respectful but also with a sense of humour. He was attentive at all times and went out of his way to ensure that we were well stocked with champagne and pre-dinner canapes such as prawns, crab claws, olives, etc. Nothing was too much trouble. Our joint steward/stewardess Nick and Ni-Made were delightful -- they kept the suite spotless, topped up with all the luxury toiletries and, with Immanuel, decorated our suite beautifully for the 60th birthday celebration. They chatted with us daily, used our names and always ensured that we were happy and enjoying the cruise. Our chats were never forced and they showed genuine interest in us, as we did in them. The 10 night cruise was really beyond expectation -- even after a great cruise last year. The destinations -- all with inclusive excursions, were varied and interesting. We visited Nassau, Puerto Rico, St Barts, Antigua, St Lucia and St Martin. From swimming with dolphins and taking part in an off-road safari to a tour of St Lucia and some great beaches to visit, the excursions were well organized and managed and we never felt that it was just going through the motions -- each tour was unique and offered different experiences. The dining experiences on board were to a high standard overall. Last year we rated La Verandah as the best overall and Prime 7, the steak house style restaurant, the least. However, Regent decided to expand Prime 7, reduce the size of La Verandah and 'convert' La Verandah into 'Sette Mari' -- an Italian styled restaurant in the evenings -- in our view, a big mistake. The main restaurant, Compass Rose, became our favourite this year because the service was excellent, the restaurant was brighter and the staff just faultless. Prime 7 was much improved as they cooked the steaks correctly first time -- however, the restaurant is too dark and somber -- we had to ask to be moved to a table with better lighting so that we could read the menu! La Verandah has lost out in all of the changes -- it was average this year (clearly lacking the touch of Stefano, the Maitre d', who was on leave) and the conversion in the evenings to Setti Mari has been a backward step. We ate there in the evenings only once because it was uninspiring and cramped -- the new pasta station, which was hardly ever used, has absorbed so much space that we were practically brushing shoulders with other diners on neighbouring tables. Because of the reduced space, even at 8.30 pm, we were turned away and asked to return in 20 minutes -- this never happened last year and was a regular occurrence this year. The food was not that special and when we gave feedback to the staff during the meal it was received grudgingly. To be fair, in the mid-cruise review that Regent always asks clients to complete we raised our concerns re: Setti Mari and both the restaurant manager and the executive chef made personal contact with us to apologise and to invite us back -- the executive chef even offering to cook for us personally. The entertainment programme was as extensive as last year and very ably led by the brilliant and vivacious cruise director, Lorraine. Every day there was something special and, for a small boat, was quite exceptional, including Cirque Navigator, a take on Cirque de Soleil. With themed pool side events such as TexMex, seafood barbecue and ice sculpture demonstrations to a 50th Anniversary Bond event and a live Beatles' late night show and dance, there was something for everyone. The orchestra/band was very skillful and talented in performing a range of live music across various genres. If we had one criticism it is that the main evening shows were too much Broadway oriented and could have had a greater element of international music and/or more West End show content. Great weather and a good range of free excursions ensured that we had a great 10 day cruise. The ship's captain adjusted the speed of the ship according to the sea conditions and so we had a very smooth cruise -- even saw a whale and her calf alongside the ship during our last day at sea. Reports of some other reviews that the ship vibrates has not been our experience on this or last year's cruise. Some reviews about the Navigator and the quality of service have not been complimentary at times. Our experience is that if you engage with the staff and develop a rapport, the service is even better. Sometimes, we have seen some passengers treat the staff as little more than skivvies and others just like to find fault. When we have a problem we use the channels provided to raise our concerns. On the few occasions that we have had problems our issues have always been addressed professionally and with courtesy. May be that's a factor in why some people's experience has not matched that of ours. We're already looking for the next cruise on the Navigator. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
Service in all areas, especially cabin service and Pool Grill, was excellent. The weather was very very windy and the ship did not seem to handle it well. Luckily we had a mid ship cabin on Deck 6 so it was as smooth as possible. Higher ... Read More
Service in all areas, especially cabin service and Pool Grill, was excellent. The weather was very very windy and the ship did not seem to handle it well. Luckily we had a mid ship cabin on Deck 6 so it was as smooth as possible. Higher decks were very rocky. There was so much spray and motion we were unable to use our balcony except in port. The dinner menus in Compass Rose were a little weird. I had grilled salmon off the "every day available" menu until I was tired of it then ordered plain pasta with a sauce from one of the appetizers. My mom had lamb every night because she did not like any of the odder entrees. The entertainment from the singers/dancers/specialty acrobatic act was excellent. Too bad they did not perform more often. We loved the Pool Grill - tropical drinks, delicious white wine, custom burgers, sweet potato fries, salmon and tuna burgers. Our party of six including two 88 year olds, had lunch at Pool Grill every day instead of the more sedate service at Compass Rose. The buffet area at La Terrazza was very very crowded at both breakfast and lunch. This is another serious concern about this ship compared to other all-inclusive luxury ships. Thanks to the Navigator and Seven Seas staff for negotiating last minute coverage of the Super Bowl from the satellite provider. All in all a lovely experience, but the stability of this ship made me very nervous. I have never had a sea sickness episode before in 25 cruises but this ship did not handle the windy weather well at all. Fortunately they were passing out Bonnine at the front desk. There were a couple of things we really appreciated and which set Regent Seven Seas apart from Silversea which we love. One was the free unlimited shore excursions. This was an excellent benefit. The entertainers - not the juggler comedian and the singer they had - but the singers, dancers and specialty act - were truly marvelous. And an evening event called the Block Party, where guests were encouraged to come out of their rooms, wine glass in hand, when the ship's bell blew at 5:00 - was truly fun. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
We prefer relatively the smaller expedition capable type ships. Have voyaged now for over 400 nights. Used HAL and Princess until we discovered Regent. No problem with HAL and Princess but Regent is superior in the majority of categories. ... Read More
We prefer relatively the smaller expedition capable type ships. Have voyaged now for over 400 nights. Used HAL and Princess until we discovered Regent. No problem with HAL and Princess but Regent is superior in the majority of categories. This trip was Miami to Miami,13 ports visited, 6 on the Amazon River. Very educational and enjoyable. This is our second cruise on the Navigator and third on Regent. Very good ship for exploration style voyages. Regent has made a few modifications to the ship since they acquired it. All for the better. Some complain of the vibration but it actually isn't bad at all, only in the stern during departures. Regent is the only line we have been on where the smell of sewage on its ships isn't detectable at times in various locations. The public space per passenger is about the highest in the industry and the ratio of crew to passengers is also on the top of the list. We particularly like the cabins. They are very spacious, at least in the deluxe suite and penthouse suite accommodations. A smaller balcony suite has 356 sq. feet of space, compared to slightly over 200 on many other ships. We have had a separate bath and walk in shower in the spacious bathrooms every time. Same goes for the walk in closets which are about as large as standard cabin bathrooms. Food was excellent and we never have been delayed for meals at any time, we usually eat dinner at table for two in the man dining room. Sure nice to not be hog tied to a traditional dining environment where one is relegated to dine with "luck of the draw" random dinner companions, night after night. The specialty restaurant, "Prime 7", is an excellent intimate quality culinary experience. Only problem is there are not enough tables for two. We recommend they restrict seating at tables for 4 & 6 to parties already formed up prior to dinner. No seating with random companions should be made. Part of the reason for this is there is no extra charge for the premium dining rooms on Regent. Therefore some show up because they believe they must take advantage of a perk, regardless whether they are in a foul mood and improperly dressed. We visited St. Barts, St Lucia, Devils Island, Trinidad, Santarem, Manaus, Parintins, Barbados and Antiqua--Shore excursions were all excellent but we did prefer some ports much more than others. Parintins was a little Amazon River village which we had to walk to from the beach, population 100, which symbolized best the theme of the voyage and gave us the a real appreciation of life on the Amazon. No nickel and dimeing with Regent. Your initial payment covers almost everything including liquor (fine selection of red wines on board) as well as the best shore excursions we have experienced. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2012
DW (Dear wife, for the uninitiated( and I are retired Seniors living in S.Fl. This was our 43rd voyage; we had been wanting to try the Regent line but it had not been convenient before, so when we found they were to move its home port to ... Read More
DW (Dear wife, for the uninitiated( and I are retired Seniors living in S.Fl. This was our 43rd voyage; we had been wanting to try the Regent line but it had not been convenient before, so when we found they were to move its home port to Miami, we decided to "sign on". We booked through our local agent, and were glad we did. (I have never remarked to any degree on an agent before as felt it might be considered a personal plug, but have to remove that precedent here) There were several problems with this booking, not the fault of the line but a very complicated situation emerged. Our agent and her parent company alike (surfturftravel@aol.com) performed heroically to solve the several problems, spending a great amount of time and energy and kept in touch admirably, keeping us apprised of progress, as, frankly, the entire issue was more than a little "iffy" at certain points. We arrived at the port by private transportation and found check-in uncrowded and well handled. The area used by Regent (it was their first sailing from Miami) is or was (?) the facility used by Oceania and could not be more convenient, being the first terminal as you enter the port, so traffic and congestion were relatively non-existent. Here came the first surprise: We were told that rooms would be ready at a specific time and, in a pleasant manner, not to attempt to enter your cabin until so announced. We soon found out why. When the announcement was made that "all cabins" were ready, we found, on our floor, and we assume all others, all cabin doors open into the hallway and...are you ready...stewards standing in near military style at the individual cabin doors...eerily reminiscent of the latrine scene in Andy Griffith's "No Time For Sergeants) in which Griffith, the new recruit, has rigged the bathroom facilities to snap to attention for the inspecting Officer. To add to that, in our bathroom, when you open the lower cabinet underneath the sink, the clever drawstring apparatus gradually opens the wastebasket, saving you that "effort". Our cabin (all facilities are termed "suites") was indeed that. Without a doubt, the nicest and most well laid out we have ever experienced in our prior 42 voyages. To be fair, we usually book Ocean View or Veranda, so the 301 total sq.ft. was a welcome surprise. A tub and separate shower, four, yes, 4 mirrors NOT counting the bathroom, & 3 telephones.+ We were both impressed no end by the amount of usable and well thought out storage. In fact, I was still finding more up to the third day. Adjacent to the nice sized walk in closet (our first ever) there was a cleverly spaced seven drawer cabinet. It would not be a problem in this regard to do a very long voyage, which we have not found to be so on two prior world cruises on two other more mainstream lines. Our steward, Jay, took good care of us and our suite at every turn. On our table was a spray of fresh orchids, a basket of fruit and a chilled bottle of champagne to welcome us and set the tone. Impressive indeed. We dined time wise almost equally between the cafeteria and main dining room. Several times we ordered room service breakfast when there were early tours. Worthy of note indeed, said room service breakfast. A smiling waiter enters the room, sets the tray on the sofa, and, voila, magically causes a perfectly sized table top to appear from its hiding place behind the sofa. Settling it expertly in place, he then sets the table with a white cloth and full silver service. The cafeteria is set up in a different manner than most. You may take as you desire from the line, of course, but there are no trays; if possible a staff member will take your plate and lead to your table. A free standing one person station, immediately between the two opposite service lines, handles eggs/omelets to order at breakfast, and pasta and stir fry at lunch. A very helpful and efficient lady Maitre'd stands by to help with order taking and service. A noteworthy hallmark is: if an item from the main dining room is not available, it can be sent up and brought to your table. In the evening, as with other lines, this area is converted to a sit-down Italian restaurant. There is no self-service beverage service; a waiter will take your drink order. Service in all categories is truly above and beyond most others,of course of the ones we have sailed. The charming and helpful lady concierge, whose desk abuts the customer service and shore excursion desks, was so helpful and pleasant that I discreetly informed her that my wife and I would like to take her home with us. She politely declined, but did thank us! Anything desired, within reason, I believe could and would be taken care of. Example of the unexpected: As is becoming a habit on most lines, midway through a comment card asking; "How are we doing?" is distributed. Wife noted what to her was a shortage of the chocolate in certain items (Trust me here, she is an expert of all things chocolate.) and received a phone call from the chef. She subsequently, some hours later, received a followup call that a delivery from the bakery was on the way. Soon, the doorbell (yes, no knock on the door, an actual doorbell) rang and a smiling staff member presented her with an impressive plate of very very chocolaty cookies. (Think impressive chunks) This was later followed up by the chef to check on his performance, ha, wife informed him that they were the best chocolate chunk cookies she had ever had. I even had a bite myself, no comment as to whether her back was turned at the time... Main dining room is run efficiently and well. We never had a wait for a table and always found ourselves with convivial and friendly people. Food was excellent, and complimentary wine or beer, and some mixed drinks are complimentary all throughout the ship, including the full content of your cabin minibar. Tables also have a spray of fresh orchids. Entertainment was excellent and unexpectedly so for a smaller ship, the Navigator being the smallest of Regent's three ships. The Jean Ann Ryan troupe performed several fully staged shows and were enthusiastically received. Their performances feature a highly talented acrobatic duo who were audience favorites. An excellent female singer did multiple shows, being also well received. An excellent cruise staff show rounded out the overall more than good entertainment. We found disappointment (admittedly hard to do) in only one area, the gym/fitness center. Small even for a small ship...only four machines (excluding the usual treadmill pieces) and even though they could be set for multiple configurations, we were not as impressed as with other aspects of the ship. Good use was made of the space provided, but why not more space to start with? With beverages being complimentary, perhaps one bar might have been made smaller or even eliminated? To some this may not be of importance, to us, it is. Ports: Costa Maya, Mexico: We repeated (most shore excursions are [also] complimentary) a trip to an ancient Pyramid site we had done once before. Santo Tomas de Castilla,Guatemala: we enjoyed the tour (Via local tender) of a highly rated resort, with a complimentary BBQ lunch. It is well done with what we were told by staff is recreations of fortifications of earlier times. Belize City: I truly wish I could tell you, but there was a mixup on our part of the time and place to begin, and we missed our connection. We were supposed to enjoy the airboat tour which we were told was more than worthwhile. Cozumel: Can you spell; "The good and the Very annoying"? Good: We docked at the downtown area, instead of being fed into an offshore shopping center, as has happened in the past. The "Annoying"? The most, well, the only word is indeed, annoying, storefront touts in your face with every step you take. I finally solved this by walking off the sidewalk behind the pedestrian stream, and when this became impractical, we simply gave up and returned to the ship. Note to Tourism Department; The only purchase we made was from a shopkeeper who did not hassle us and informed us that he had no intention of doing so. This does NOT create good will and in my opinion can simply drive people away. Key West: No strangers to this locale, we took the glass bottom boat tour to what was described as one of the world's largest offshore reefs. A long boat ride to get there and back, and from what we saw, to us not a standout. Others may disagree. Would we do the Navigator again? Probably not. Would we do the line again? Absolutely. Mainly to have access to a larger fitness center, which is more important to us than it may be to you. Outstanding service and the nicest cabin we have ever had in our experience, of the usual class we book (Ocean View or Veranda) turn the tide for us. And without our truly amazing travel agent, we might have missed this one, in fact! Did I say that as is the trend to "all inclusive", gratuities are also included. No? I didn't? Well, they are. Bye! 30 Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Good and Bad can best describe this cruise A. Suite 1. Master Suite 1000 on Navigator -- high cost but poor value due to forward location 2. Beautiful suite but not enjoyable when underway due to wave motion of ... Read More
Good and Bad can best describe this cruise A. Suite 1. Master Suite 1000 on Navigator -- high cost but poor value due to forward location 2. Beautiful suite but not enjoyable when underway due to wave motion of ship. Impossible to walk comfortably in cabin. 3. Balcony not useable at all when underway due to unobstructed high winds. Furniture on balcony was strapped down. Used all balcony furniture only one day, while at port. 4. Suggestion: construct wind barrier door, similar to dividers between suites that can be opened when at port. 5. Butler,exceeded expectations. Room stewardess,was also exceptional. 6. Unable to schedule in-suite cocktail party due to wave motion of ship (sometimes extreme motion). I realize that you can't control the seas but this motion was constant when ship was underway, even in calm seas. B. Food 1. Our first meal in Prime 7 was very good the 2nd visit to Prime 7 was fair I ordered a porterhouse that was tough and had to be sent back and replaced with a fillet that was good. Others in our party had well to very good entrees. 2. Sette Mari was very good on our first visit but the meat entrees selected on the second visit were very tough and lacked flavor. 3. Breakfasts were always excellent at La Veranda. 4. Meals at the Pool Grill were consistently very good as were the bar drinks. Suggest they offer pizza. 5. Meals at Compass Rose were consistently good to very good. 6. From all reviews we received, the food was reported to be excellent. However, we found only a few items to be outstanding as compared to other cruise lines. Superb food was one of the reasons we selected Regent. 7. The matre de, Stephano Frattori, was truly excellent no matter where or when we encountered him. We noted that he extended the same superior service to all of his guests. He is a true asset to the Regent family. 8. The Pool Grill bar staff was also truly excellent. They took the time to learn exactly how their guests preferred their drinks. 9. In general, all restaurant staff were excellent. C. Shore Excursions 1. On the whole, the shore excursions were very enjoyable. 2. There is a discrepancy between some of the requirements/limitations on-line versus what is allowed when on the cruise. 3. We were greatly disappointed at an early departure at Turks and Cacos. Our day was cut in half. Many other passengers also felt the same. It appeared that the Navigator lost its dockage to the larger Carnival and Princess Cruise lines. We understand tender limitations but Regent should have known where these other cruise ships were located and where they planned to dock. Other arrangements should have been made for Regent passengers. This was not our problem!! Instead, it was a half day of vacation lost. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
VALUE We love Regent Cruises......no other cruise line gives as much value coupled with casual, Comfortable elegance. It is also generous with discounts if you do not use their Included air or hotel. Everything except spa, laundry ... Read More
VALUE We love Regent Cruises......no other cruise line gives as much value coupled with casual, Comfortable elegance. It is also generous with discounts if you do not use their Included air or hotel. Everything except spa, laundry and shopping is included. They Pour excellent wines...and top shelf liquor. I did enjoy champagne with my breakfast! INTERNET Very expensive on first and second cruises: $.95 to $.50/ min depending on package Since our third cruise we have had unlimited Internet and wifi Throughout the ship, you Can bring your own iPad or they will supply one, good assistance from the net manager And great free copying. ENTERTAINMENT This Thanksiving cruise Nov 15-25'2012. Had the most OUTSTANDING SHOWS 6 Of the nights....4 big broadway theme shows, a more intimate nightclub Beatles night, And the most amazing LE CIRQUE performance in any theater...land or sea of the 10 We have seen including Las Vegas. The 2 comedy nights were disappointing. An operatic Singer one night had a gorgeous voice. There is music and entertainment throughout The ship at other times as well as the usual cruise games and activities. FOOD Ranged from great to disappointing... But service was consistently excellent and there were Always more choices. There is only one fancy specialty restaurant, Prime 7. Service was so Leisurely that we left immediately after the main course to see the show. We were graciously Told we could come back just for dessert any other evening. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
This was our first time on Regent and I can say I was not disappointed, but they fall a little short of their self proclaimed 6 star rating. The ship: Navigator is a pretty little ship, but she has a problem with vibration in a sea. As ... Read More
This was our first time on Regent and I can say I was not disappointed, but they fall a little short of their self proclaimed 6 star rating. The ship: Navigator is a pretty little ship, but she has a problem with vibration in a sea. As one crew member told me, they have added a "skirt" to the stern to add weight to reduce the vibration. He told me it had improved the vibration. What ever you do, do NOT get a cabin on deck 7 aft. I met a couple who had an assigned cabin (780) and they told me it was unbearable to the point they told the ship they would fly home from San Juan. Their cabin was changed despite a sold out ship. Suite: Our suite was 6 star and our Butler (Vivek) and Stewardess (Yanti) were both 6 star and a credit to Regent. Vivek was available for any service from changing appointments in the spa to providing room service from the Compass Rose. Yanti kept the room in perfect condition and was ever present if needed, but out of sight when not. Dinning: Here is where Navigator falls short. First, it often took as many as 4 requests for an ice tea. There were many times that when serving, the waiter would reach in front of me to serve a beverage. It became a little annoying to have a forearm stretched across my plate. Setti Mare, their evening Italian restaurant on deck 10 seemed to have a problem with consistency. On Thursday evening, I ordered their sea food specialty and it was superb. Friday night we returned and I ordered it again and it was almost like they had served left overs. It was over cooked and covered in sauce. Compass Rose, the main dinning room, had the same problem with ice tea and forearms in your face. The food, I must say, for the most part was excellent. It appears that the serving staff are poorly trained. One passenger reported that he had ordered a special bottle of wine and when his glass got low, the wine steward filled it with the house wine! I would suggest to Regent that they take a lesson from Celebrity and hire trained wait staff. Shore excursions: We only took two and they were both excellent. Due to an at sea "rescue" of a sailboat at the behest of the USCG, we were late into San Juan and a number of shore excursions were canceled, but the one that did go ended up with the buss being caught in traffic for 3 hours. Certainly not Regent's fault, but they need better supervision of the tour operators . Itinerary: It seems all the cruise lines go to Samana or Cayo Levantado in the Domincan Republic. Why I have no idea. There is nothing there other than a beach. The same could be said for some of the other stops as most tours were beach tours. The ship stayed in St Barts until midnight. This is a pretty, small island that is very expensive (4 Euro plus tip for a coke). After an island tour and a brief walk around, there is little to do. Turks and Caicos was another beach tour stop, but the Navigator docks in the morning and must anchor out after 1pm as two larger ships come in to the small dock. The weather was not conducive to tendering due to seas, so we left at 1PM rather than the 5pm scheduled departure. All Inclusive: Let me say that the alcohol being poured on this ship could float her! It was much easier to get a double shot of Dewars than it was to get and ice tea. I ordered a Dewars on the rocks and had to ask for a glass of water as it had to be 5-6 shots of Dewars and 4 ice cubes. Overall: I had a great time as did my wife. Is Navigator 6 stars? No. Overall, I would rate her at 4.8 stars due to a poor "front of the house" experience. Those in the "back of the house" (chefs etc.) do, overall, an excellent job, but the wait staff is lacking in training and has a poor command of the english language. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2012
For those of you unfamiliar with Regent, do yourself a favor and go to Cruise Reviews section of Cruise Critic and read the article on Regent. This will give you an idea of what to expect, but, hopefully my review will give you some ... Read More
For those of you unfamiliar with Regent, do yourself a favor and go to Cruise Reviews section of Cruise Critic and read the article on Regent. This will give you an idea of what to expect, but, hopefully my review will give you some additional insights. We do not consider ourselves seasoned cruisers, having only 5 cruises between us, on everything from a now defunct Greek line to Princess to Regent. However, we do consider ourselves as well traveled, having been all over the world. We like great food and wine, expect good service and first class accommodations. We're not big into the casino scene or late night entertainment, but love history, sight seeing, beautiful scenery and meeting interesting people. After a wonderful trip on Navigator from Vancouver to Anchorage in August of 2011, we looked for another trip for this year. Our travel agent is based in Scottsdale, Arizona and mentioned that they were putting together a group of clients to do the October 14-24 trip from New York to Montreal. We readily signed up and looked forward to seeing New England and Canada from Navigator. Arrived one day prior to sailing on a balmy fall day in New York City. Our transfer from La Guardia to the Intercontinental Times Square was a private town car with a former NYPD officer as our driver. He regaled us with stories as we entered Manhattan, even pointing out his favorite restaurants along the way. We were quickly checked into the Intercontinental and were disappointed to be assigned a handicapped accessible room on the third floor. It had two queens, rather than the requested king, and had a lower hanging rod in the only closet, which meant our suit bag dragged on the floor. As it was only one night, we made the best of it and set out to explore the hotel and neighborhood. We had a fabulous meal at Keens Steakhouse (72 W. 36th) - do try the famous mutton chop! After a good night's sleep we went to the pre-cruise buffet and met some fellow passengers. Service was poor at the buffet and after trying to track down more coffee, we made a bee line for the closest Starbucks. I usually judge a pre-cruise hotel with one simple question - would I come back on my own on a future trip and the answer here is simply no. The nearby Westin is a better hotel for a comparable price. Embarkation was not as smooth as it could have been. We were told to wait in a lower level ballroom and only come out to the transfer area when our number was called. Needless to say, we waited and waited well past our 1:30 PM departure time. It was finally about 2:30 when we were called to identify our luggage and board the bus. Fortunately we had a nice, scenic drive along the west side of Manhattan, passing the Intrepid and the construction of the new World Trade Center. Emerging from the Brooklyn/Battery Tunnel, it was a short drive to the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, which is a huge and beautiful facility. As we were the last bus from the Intercontinental, it was a breeze getting on board. We went to our suite and leaned out on the balcony to see the Manhattan skyline to our right and to our left, in the distance, the Statue of Liberty. A bottle of champagne was chilled and waiting as were envelopes containing all of our excursions and spa appointments. We spent the rest of the day wandering around, re-acquainting ourselves with the ship. Dinner was at Setti Mari, which was new for us. The La Veranda is turned into an Italian themed dining venue for dinner only. Ala carte choices are excellent, including primi and secondi courses of pasta, chicken, seafood and beef and veal. We ended up dining in Setti Mari more than any other restaurant during the entire cruise due to the intimate size of the space, enthusiastic staff, headed by Stefano, and the excellent antipasti buffet and scrumptious dessert selections. All wines were Italian unless you requested something else, which we did occasionally. Scheid Chardonnay was excellent and something I can't find in my hometown. Sail Away was spectacular, with the Manhattan skyline ablaze with lights, Lady Liberty holding her torch and the Verrazano Narrows Bridge straight ahead. We went to the upper deck to crane our necks as we sailed under the bridge and then returned to our suite to turn in and get ready for Newport, Rhode Island. The suite's are really fantastic. Plush bedding, flat screen tv, comfortable seating and oodles of storage. The walk in closet is stocked with built in drawers, three different hanging rods, with wooden hangars, a long row of hooks, belt/tie rack and a safe. The marble bath is spacious with a small tub and walk in shower. Bath products are L'Occitane and the towels are plentiful and appear new. I appreciate the built in vanity area, with good lighting and a portable magnifying mirror. Robes and slippers are standard, as is a huge umbrella, extra blanket and a fully stocked beverage refrigerator. Our routine was established last August on Navigator - while I get ready, my husband gets us a latte and mocha from the espresso bar on the 6th deck, then we decide where to catch breakfast. We usually did La Veranda, though lots of hardy souls browsed the pool deck for cold options and ate under heat lamps. Choices in La Veranda run the gamut from pastries, cereal, fruit, meat, cheeses to made to order eggs, pancakes, and the best french toast you'll have anywhere. We always approached either Stefano or Alan, who manage the restaurant, and asked to be seated. Upon being seated we were always promptly offered water, coffee and juice and asked if we wanted to order or go to the buffet. If we were in a hurry to catch an excursion, we usually did the buffet, but found they were super fast with made to order items as well. We never had to wait for a table and almost always had a window seat. Excursions were handled well by meeting in the theater area and trading your pre-planned excursion tickets for a tour number. When called, you were escorted to the gangway and either were tendered or walked off the ship, depending on which port we were in. (By the way, I booked all of our excursions on line back in April). Representatives always met you on the dock and off you go. Most Regent excursions are included in the cruise price, with a few exceptions. For example, we did pay extra to attend a Seafood 101 Cooking Course at the Culinary Institute of Canada (trust me....worth every penny!) A few excursions were spectacular (Acadia National Park) and a few were duds (Sydney Walking Tour), but all in all, very enjoyable. Many people wore comfortable clothes, lots of jeans, khakis, layers and sturdy shoes. Our post excursion routine was either reading by the pool - yes, I said pool, or playing team trivia in the Galileo Lounge. We had unseasonably warm, sunny weather and calm seas. We always changed for dinner and my husband was glad he brought two sport coats as most gentlemen wore a jacket after 6:00 PM. I saw few dresses on ladies, but lots of nice slacks, beautiful sweaters, scarves and the occasional bling. We did dine twice in the reservation-only Prime Seven. Steaks and seafood are king here and the service and atmosphere are top drawer. Compass Rose is your other dining choice and is by far the largest dining room. I really appreciated the addition of some Prime Seven entrees on the Compass Rose menu every night. We ended up in Compass Rose three nights, one of them as guests of the General Manager, Davor. I can heartily recommend any opportunity you get to meet the officers and crew. We learn so much every time we meet them. The captain, Daniel Green, was everywhere. He was often at the gangway when we entered or exited the ship and could usually be spotted in the restaurants dining with staff and passengers. After dinner you have a few choices. Entertainment takes place nightly in the theater, or you could opt to go to the casino or have a drink in one of the lounges where a piano player or the orchestra might be playing. We often stopped by the computer room in the library to check email or read the news. WiFi is available, but expensive. If you reach "Silver" status as a frequent Regent traveller, you receive free WiFi, but as we discovered, it was not consistently reliable. With only one sea day, we saved our spa appointments for the day we cruised the Gulf of St. Lawrence. My husband was skeptical that he would get a really intense massage on a cruise, but was raving about the quality of his deep tissue massage. My hot stone pedicure was fabulous. Spa services are provided through Canyon Ranch and are top notch. Again, we booked these services directly through Canyon Ranch at Sea before we left home. This is important as we noticed people trying to book last minute treatments and not being able to get their choice (if at all). All in all, Navigator is a great ship. Small size - 480 passengers, large crew, excellent dining, beautiful public spaces and large suites. The crew are phenomenal. We were usually greeted by name everywhere we went, wait staff remembered our drink preferences - whether is was Perrier, Diet Coke, Grey Goose Martini - up, twist, no vermouth, non-fat latte, mocha with whipped cream....Chardonnay, Dark Beer...they never missed a beat. I admit to having favorite staff - Elvis, Navin, Austin, Eduardo, Stefano, Alan and, of course, Davor and Capt. Green. To improve the experience, I would recommend a few things: 1. Update your computer/wifi system. We found the computer area too small, the equipment dated and it appeared that the servers were overwhelmed when everyone was online at once. 2. Expand your gateway airports to include regional airports. Free airfare isn't really free if it's only out of a handful of major cities. We are 6 hours from either Detroit or Chicago and are forced to pay extra to get to the cruise. 3. Allow us to rate excursions and other non ship processes. Although very interested in seeking survey feedback on-board, there was no mechanism to report on the quality of the pre-cruise hotels, transfer process, or each excursion. With Hurricane Sandy bearing down on the east coast, I am grateful that we had beautiful weather and hope everyone stays safe on Navigator (I think she's in Sydney, Cape Breton Island today). Happy Cruising! Lady Madeline Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2012
This was going to be the Cruise of a Lifetime for my companion's 50th birthday. She has always wanted to see Alaska and I figured we would truly "go in style." I wanted the very best in service aboard a smaller, more custom ... Read More
This was going to be the Cruise of a Lifetime for my companion's 50th birthday. She has always wanted to see Alaska and I figured we would truly "go in style." I wanted the very best in service aboard a smaller, more custom vessel. 1. AIR TRANSPORT This therefore narrowed it down to either RSSC or Silverseas. What sold me on Regent, like many other passengers I am sure, was that they include airfare while Silverseas may or may not, in a sailing-versus-utilization scheme that's more complicated to understand than your cell phone company's data plans. But as it turned out, this "free" airfare was a huge hassle, and ultimately a very expensive perk: we were traveling on to Hawaii, and while Silverseas flat-out refused to even consider ending up at a different airport than where we started (Newark), RSSC was quite accommodating. But here's the catch: because our other connections were made by us (RSSC was only responsible for getting us to and from the ship), that meant that if our other carriers failed to make connections we were on our own. And of course, that's exactly what happened - our Go! airlines flight was cancelled coming back, creating a domino effect of missed flights and resulting in us having to pay $900 in additional airfare - not to mention taking almost three days to get home. In addition, I later discovered that Alaska Airlines (the preferred carrier to the Navigator) actually flies direct to Kauai, which would have saved us considerable funds and literally days off our round trip; but RSSC's air program only covers Honolulu. NONE OF THIS is RSSC's fault, and I am definitely not dinging RSSC here: if your plans take you directly to and from one of the preferred airports that RSSC's air program covers, then this is a pretty good deal (but even then, do not expect RSSC to make the effort to find you particularly efficient connections). My proviso is that if your plans involve going to any secondary airports, or on to other destinations, then RSSC's included airfare may not be the bargain it first appears. 2. COMMUNICATIONS RSSC does TERRIBLE job of communicating to passengers, and perks that they claim are available often simply don't actually exist. We booked a deluxe cabin, which included a butler. Did we actually require a butler? No. But my companion was very much looking forward to having one if only for bragging rights. Aboard the ship, we were introduced to our stewardess (who was indeed friendly and helpful). But no butler - RSSC had changed their web site and their policy regarding which cabins are butler-equipped...months after we had paid in full. Another example: each deck has a big map of the ship next to the elevators. Except they don't accurately reflect the ship's layout (deck eight showed a laundry, but deck seven did not, even though the laundry is there). The map handed out said something different, and the maps on the company's web site said something else yet again. Internet is not included (well, stay tuned) and is unbelievably pricey - really? An Internet plan for $1,200?!? That was pretty hard to swallow, but the punch line was this - on the last day of the voyage, after we had been directed to the Internet lounge to print boarding passes, we discovered that our cabin came with 60 minutes of free Internet. Nobody had ever told us. One thing that people DID tell us, including an announcement by the cruise director, that if the ship was sinking we were to report to our mustering stations printed on the back of our room keys. Except no such information was on the keys. To his credit, the Cruise Director was very glad to hear of this and promised to correct his briefing - but he had not been told by the junior officer to whom we pointed out this important safety misinformation on the first day. While in many instances the information coming to us was wrong or missing, a place where they definitely overcompensate is the number of emails they sent us in the months leading up to departure. I just tallied them up: seventeen emails with "latest" or "updated" itineraries. Except...for the most part, they were identical copies of each other - but one included a change in airline departure time, and boy that one change would be easy to miss buried inside 17 otherwise identical emails. 3. PORTS OF CALL Here is the one place where I really felt let down. RSSC makes a major point of the Navigator's small size and how her smaller size allows her to go places where the bigger ships cannot. Well, I guess from a technical point of view that may be true...but the fact of the matter is that at least on the Seward-to Vancouver run, the Navigator follows EXACTLY the same course as the bigger ships. I know this for a fact, because we often were part of a convoy of ships including Princess, NCL, and Holland America, and we followed in each other's wakes. It was very disappointing to find that RSSC makes great play about the Navigator's special abilities but fails to mention that they don't utilize any of it. 4. EXCURSIONS It is certainly nice that RSSC includes many excursions in the fare. Naturally, the better ones are not included (if you do go, absolutely take the float plane glacier ride; worth every penny. Don't waste your money on a helicopter unless that chopper is also going to touch down to let you do something useful) (this advice applies to Alaska; there are places in for example Hawaii where a helicopter is worth the extra price). Of the ones that are included, warning: take RSSC's guide to physical fitness with a grain of salt! The "nature walk" requiring you to be in good physical condition refers not to YOUR condition, but that of your walker. The only thing that required anything more than a heartbeat was the kayak and even that was ultra low-key. And having excursions included means that you are restricted to RSSC's contracted schedules, which can be very limiting. We wanted to go ziplining but it did not fit in with our other excursions. I checked around (we did not know we had free Internet yet, but there's a McDonald's in every port...) and found that the zipline operator had lots of other times, including at other ports. But the "destination services" desk wasn't interested in trying to book us for a different time, even if we were willing to pay for the excursions ourselves. 5. COMFORT The Navigator is a fairly fast and comfortable ship. The cabin was very nice but it showed a surprising amount of wear, including a bathroom cabinet whose door was caved in. The bed was firm but very comfortable. But it was NOISY when the ship was underway - all kinds of squeaks and buzzes coming from above the ceiling. In desperation I tried stuffing toilet paper above the ceiling tiles - only to discover toilet paper already there from previous passengers! As it turned out, the noise was coming from joints and piping above the ceiling and simply could not be silenced by any means other than a pillow over the head. The Navigator was built as a research vessel, not a cruise ship. When I was aboard the Norwegian Dawn, the only time the cabin ever made noise was while the ship was at top speed and with the stabilizers going full tilt in a rough sea - in the middle of night a slow, distant groan came from a ceiling panel. The Navigator creaked at the slowest speed in the calmest sea. 6. FOOD Okay, now we're getting somewhere. The Navigator really does great meals, and room service is terrific. But even this comes with caveats: a) most liquor, and some pretty good wines, are included. But it is impossible to know what complimentary wines are available. In each restaurant, on each day, the menu will list one red and one white. But all the wines listed in all the restaurant menus throughout the ship for the entire cruise are complimentary - you just don't have any way of knowing what they are. Worse, the wait staff also don't know what they are. The head sommilier printed me a list, but when I said that list should be available to passengers or at least to the wait staff he was less than thrilled by the suggestion. I had one waiter who insisted that the red and white on the menu were the only complimentary wines I was allowed to have. b) we already had a reservation in Prime 7 (the excellent steakhouse) before we boarded. Supposedly that's not allowed, but I had made it clear that if I did not have reservations for my companion's birthday we would book elsewhere. I was told repeatedly that we could book another dinner there once everyone had a chance to make a reservation - according to the concierge, no later than the second night. As it turns out, this is just baloney - the head maitre'd later confirmed to me that nobody gets a second reservation. STAFF The officers are European and are generally excellent, although the woman at destination services made me feel like it was my duty to do her job (when I was trying to resolve a conflict between the start time of an excursion between what was on the excursion ticket versus what was in the excursion schedule). The staff, and especially the wait staff, were another story. They all were earnest but some of them spoke so little English as to make any attempt at communication pointless. Trying to find out if they had "Smirnoff Ice" led to an ongoing running comedy that would have made the Marx Brothers proud. ENTERTAINMENT One definite drawback of such a small ship is that there is only one troupe of entertainers on board; the same group perform every show. So Shakespeare, 50's Rock-n-Roll, and Acrobatics. The two main stars were wonderful; the supporting cast belonged in a High School musical, and not the kind that anyone other than parents show up for. CONCLUSION I had a great time on the Navigator. But I had an even better time on larger ships whose fares cost literally a third as much. Most - but not all - of the touted advantages of being on such a ship don't really pan out in reality. If I had to do it again, I would have taken the Silverseas and planned my own transportation. Silverseas has the additional advantage of moving passengers from Anchorage to the ship (a trip of several hours) via the very nice and romantic train shoreline, while RSSC puts you on a boring bus. But I am sure that I would have had every bit as good a time on an NCL ship - and had many many thousands of dollars left over a consolation for not having a butler... Oh, that's right - I didn't have one anyway! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2012
CABIN First of all - The balcony cabin (one of the lower priced balcony cabins) was very well appointed and comfortable. The walk in closet had plenty of hangers (including a few padded ones for delicate materials). It also had clothes ... Read More
CABIN First of all - The balcony cabin (one of the lower priced balcony cabins) was very well appointed and comfortable. The walk in closet had plenty of hangers (including a few padded ones for delicate materials). It also had clothes hooks and clothes rods of different lengths for slacks, blouses, jackets, long dresses, etc. There were plenty of drawers in the closet as well as in the night stands and entertainment center so that storage wasn't an issue. The bathroom with its marble counter and glass shelving (with L'Occitane products as well as Regent brand products) had a separate tub and shower and plenty of towels. The cabin also had a small clock! The flat screen TV (with DVD player) was on a swivel so it could be watched from the sitting area or bed. I had requested a nice single malt Scotch for the cabin and was pleased to find it on the shelf of the entertainment center. (Glass cabinets contained glassware, corkscrew, bar equipment, champagne bottle stopper, & ice bucket/tongs) The mini refrigerator was stocked and maintained with soft drinks, beer, bottled water, soda water, and seltzer as well as a insulated bucket with ice cubes. Cabin also had a long couch, 2 arm chairs, a desk chair for the desk in the entertainment center and a very comfortable bed. The balcony had 2 chairs and a small table. And I appreciated the thoughtful little touches such as a nice blue wool blanket (this was Alaska, folks, not the Caribbean) that I would use when on the balcony enjoying the gorgeous scenery. (And I always found it strange that a cruise was traveling through fjords with forests and mountains in view rather than only ocean.) SERVICE Without exception, I found every staff member to be friendly, eager to assist, and excellent in performing their jobs. EXCURSIONS There were so many excursions offered that I was almost over-whelmed in trying to select the ones I wished. I strongly advise future cruisers to select as soon as the choices are available as some of the more popular ones were fully booked by the time we boarded. Some on the waiting lists were able to add at the last minute, but several were disappointed. I'm quite happy with my selections and of those my favorites were: the catamaran whale-watching (saw and heard feeding humpbacks using the bubble net method - awesome), the catamaran to view otters and birds (saw the largest raft of otters I've ever seen as well as a great variety of birds and a bonus of orca.), the cultural story and dance in Hoonah, and the White Horse Train following the Yukon Gold Rush "easy" trail. I was truly impressed with the organization of the excursions. Once you arrived on the pier, you looked for a person holding the sign for your excursion and gathered around and then were escorted to either the boat, bus, etc. to begin the adventure. Some ports required reaching the pier by tender - well organized and I experienced no delay in getting to shore. And, again, I appreciated the thoughtful touches such as bottled water near the exit for shore as well as umbrellas on the one rainy day we had. Although the Regent 7 Seas Navigator is a smaller ship (maximum of 490 passengers although the usual number is closer to 400), it had all of the big ship features. ENTERTAINMENT/ACTIVITIES The entertainment was great and the activities varied enough to meet the many wishes and expectations. The stage entertainment varied from enjoyable singing/dancing routines with talented performers and great costumes to a very well-done singing/puppet/comedy show. The stage was smaller than on the large ships but used extremely well. There were also large screen movies and dance evenings. The resource person for Alaska geography, glaciers, wildlife, and culture was very informative. Her lectures in the theater were interesting (Since they were usually at 9 am, luckily they were taped so this sleepyhead enjoyed most of them on the TV) She also did some live talks on deck as we neared a port or special scenic spot. I was a solo passenger and truly appreciated the various mixer opportunities beginning with the "block party" right after sailing when passengers were invited to return to their cabins to get their wine glass and then step out into the corridor to meet guests in the nearby cabins. Crew members filled the glasses with wine, champagne, or juice and the captain & cruise director visited every deck and every corridor to meet & greet. I met some lovely people in the near-by cabins and frequently found myself in their company for meals or entertainment. It was a great ice-breaker for helping solo travelers feel like a welcome part of the voyage. The ship also invited "Social Travelers" (not only solo but singles and couples interested in meeting new people) to meet in one of the lounges at 6:45 pm to visit and then go to dinner together - the Social Travelers were hosted by 2 staff members - usually members of the entertainment crew and assistant cruise director. (I must also add that the passengers were very inclusive and welcoming to single travelers - what a lovely bunch of people I met!) The 4 o'clock tea was a pleasant gathering to meet, visit, and compare excursions while enjoying tasty treats (always with the standard scones, finger sandwiches, etc. and with additional daily yummies - such as varieties of cheesecake, chocolate, etc. Then 4:30 pm tea time moved into a trivia contest using the same 6 gathered around the small tea tables. Good fun and the winning team received reward cards they could turn in for items on the final evening. DINING What can I say but excellent in every venue. And I found the wine choices fine (perhaps unknown from Chile and Australia but good wines) without needing to order and paying for upscale labels. I chose room service for breakfast and always received what I ordered when I requested it and hot. EMBARKATION/DEBARKATION I flew from San Francisco to Anchorage and then from Vancouver, BC Canada to San Francisco on the way home. The Regent 7 Seas agents were at the baggage carousal in Anchorage to help with the luggage and getting us on board the bus to the hotel. The hotel lobby had a table where we were handed an envelope with our room key and the ticket to a buffet breakfast in the ballroom the next morning and the time we would board a bus for the 3 hour trip to the ship berthed in Seward. The luggage was brought to the room for the evening and passengers placed the bags they wanted taken to the ship inside the door for early morning pickup by staff. We kept our carry-on luggage with us on the bus. The ride to the ship was scenic and the bus driver did a great job of narration. Embarking was fast and easy and I found my luggage already in my cabin when I arrived. Leaving the ship was also uneventful - we were given colored tags to place on our luggage for pick up and those had to go out into the corridor by late evening. We were able to enjoy an early breakfast before gathering in the theater area to be called by color of the tag. (Those who had earlier plane flights arranged through Regent were given earlier times.) Leaving the ship with our carry-on bag, we found the bags organized in rows by color tag, retrieved ours, and went through customs/immigration before staff gathered us to board buses for the airport. Arriving at the airport, other staff helped guide us through US immigration/customs and then we were on our own for the flight home. (Amazing how many friendly passenger faces I spotted and waved to my way to my gate.) All in all - the whole trip was delightful and I highly recommend the Regent Seven Seas Navigator for size, organization, friendly and efficient staff, food/drink, excursions, activities and dining. In checking prices, they may seem a bit high at first but almost everything is included (a few of the excursions cost extra - flights, catamarans, dog sledding). On other cruises that I have had, the added cost of drinks, excursions, wine, tips, etc. ended up costing almost as much as if not more than the cruise itself. (Sticker shock at the end of a voyage while with Regent, you know and prepay the cost with no unwelcome surprise totals at the end of the voyage.) Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2012
Review - Regent Seven Seas "Navigator" Anchorage to Vancouver 2-13 July 2012 I think it's often wiser to write a review with the benefit of objective hindsight so I have spent a few days thinking this through before ... Read More
Review - Regent Seven Seas "Navigator" Anchorage to Vancouver 2-13 July 2012 I think it's often wiser to write a review with the benefit of objective hindsight so I have spent a few days thinking this through before risking the ire of the Regent loyalists of whom I consider myself one believe it or not! I will also keep it as brief as possible and apologise now if I omit any important details. If so, feel free to ask. No food pics either. We all know what food looks like! Overall we enjoyed our cruise but can't help feeling disappointed that it didn't meet our expectations. It is also perhaps unfair to compare one Regent cruise against another with such different ships and itineraries. Or maybe our Sydney to Beijing Voyager cruise last year was exceptional compared to this Navigator experience. Getting to Anchorage on the trans-Pacific haul is always a challenge for those of us who live Down Under but this one was made much easier by the excellent Air New Zealand service from Melbourne (via Auckland) to Vancouver. If you want to avoid the added stress of transiting through LAX or San Francisco then I can highly recommend it. Unfortunately we had to go via San Fran to make it to Anchorage/Seward on time so we had the customary surly and rude "welcome" to the US from the border/customs officials so many visitors are now subjected to. A truly terrible "first class" 5 hour United flight in an ancient 737 from San Fran to Anchorage with broken seats and inedible food - an outrageous waste of money - soured the mood even further. A major attitude adjustment is required from their cranky and impatient flight attendants too. Hotel was the Captain Cook. It was clean and comfortable but we were so jetlagged and exhausted after almost 24 hours of airports/travel we really didn't care. There were a number of Regent and Princess pax staying there so there was a long queue for breakfast. Hint: Ask for a later bus to Seward to avoid the early brekky queue and a very quick and easy embarkation. A 2 hour bus ride at midday to Seward was uneventful and we were about the last group of passengers to embark so the process was entirely painless and smooth . 10 minutes max. Penthouse Suite on deck 11 was classic Regent and exactly as you'd expect, ie clean, spacious, comfortable and smart with all the usual attention to detail. I can't comment on the recent refit as I didn't see what it was like beforehand but everything was fine apart from paint spattered verandah furniture and a bit of minor 'finishing off' required here and there. That being said, the ship is obviously getting old and tired which no amount of cosmetic surgery is going to fix. A bit like me really. We did notice the infamous "vibration problem", especially when sailing at higher speeds but it didn't bother us. More intrusive was the early morning thump, thump, thump of the gym treadmills which were directly over our cabin. Our butler Irshad was a delight and very efficient and attentive , as was our steward Raz who always had a cheerful smile and time for a quick chat no matter how busy he was. Dining was very hit and miss with regards to the actual food and the service during both breakfast and dinner. I think there were a lot of new recruits among the waiters as dining room service in both the Compass Rose and Sette Mari (we couldn't get a table in Prime 7 except at 9pm one night which is way too late for us) seemed chaotic and lacking direction. I won't bore you with the several minor incidents which added up to one major problem but it wasn't as good as it could and should be and as I know it can be. On one night we had inexplicably poor service in CR and so I wrote a fairly stern mid-cruise report which seemed to have the desired effect as the crew were all over us after that but it didn't always translate into improved service. I think our names and photos were on the crew briefing room as These Two Are Trouble! One very obvious example of Regent's cost cutting was the very limited wine choices which were average quality and uninspiring. OK to drink with a meal but nothing you'd want to enjoy on its own. The sommeliers were also slow or invisible with wine often served well into the main course. Sette Mari is already a divisive topic but for us it was nothing more than a gimmick in a restaurant that's already very small (made smaller by the expanded Prime 7). OK if you like semi-formal Italian dining every night but it means that if you want a less structured or flexible evening meal then room service is your only option. I'm possibly in the minority on this one but I really don't think Regent can afford to severely restrict our dining choices like this. I know it's a matter of limited space but that makes the Sette Mari "experiment" even less practical. Bring back the La Veranda model for informal evening buffet dining please! Entertainment is limited to the very competant Jean Ann Ryan Dancers doing various themed shows and the inimitable and quirky (!) Cruise Director Ray Solaire. I don't doubt his talent as an entertainer (and he's an excellent singer) but we were hoping for something a bit different some nights. I guess the logistics of the Alaska itinerary limit the opportunities for other entertainers to join/leave the ship? The band was professional and versatile and did a great job. Demographics can be an emotive topic but on this cruise I think they played a major factor in our overall enjoyment or lack thereof. The moribund CC Roll Call for this voyage should have been a clue about what to expect perhaps. The vast majority of passengers were American seniors as you would expect on an Alaskan voyage but I'm afraid it wasn't easy to engage with most of them. Maybe it was our "weird" Aussie accents but many people made it perfectly clear they weren't interested in any kind of conversation, with some being downright rude, almost hostile. Even a friendly "G'day!" while passing in a corridor was often met with suspicious or alarmed stares or they stonewalled us altogether. We are usually happy to dine at a large table in CR in order to meet our fellow passengers but on this cruise we were sufficiently intimidated not to risk an awkward evening. The overall ambiance just wasn't the usual relaxed and happy Regent experience I'm afraid. Perhaps it had something to do with the...... Weather which was dull and damp most days which meant we were unable to see much, if any, of the magnificent Alaskan scenary except on the last two days (Prince Rupert and Inner Passage) when the sun finally came out and gave everyone a long awaited treat of warmth and those stunning views and a few welcome hours soaking up the rays relaxing on the pool deck. Our first stop at the Hubbard Glacier was a complete wash-out with very poor visibility and too much ice making it impossible to see anything at all. Seeing Terry Breen's spectacular photos of what we were missing in all that murk made it even more disappointing. The upside of all the damp and cloud was very calm seas apart from one lumpy evening (nothing serious) so we were lucky in that respect as we could tell that Navigator wouldn't handle rough seas very well. Alaskan weather is always the luck of the draw and we knew that before we booked so there's no point complaining about something that can't be predicted or fixed anyway! Excursions (or at least the ones we did) were well organized and enjoyable but they all offer basically the same thing - whales, wildlife and glaciers. Alaska does those things superbly well of course but after a week it does make all the ports tend to blend into each other. I admit we did skip a couple of "free" excursions because we were all whaled out by then. The Destinations staff was helpful and very (very) patient as there always seemed to be people asking questions and changing their minds about excursions. Disembarkation was quick and seamless and we were at Vancouver airport within an hour of leaving our suite for the last time. This was no doubt due in part to the fact that there was only one other ship docked at Canada Place that morning. In conclusion this was a good cruise overall but not a great one. The poor weather was no doubt a significant factor but we feel there was a more fundamental underlying problem which I still can't quite put my finger on. Navigator just didn't seem like a 'happy ship' for some reason either for the passengers or the crew who appeared to be lacking training, leadership and supervision. The general malaise was highlighted one morning when two dining room staff almost came to blows during breakfast in La Veranda. While there were a few families with young children on board this cruise doesn't really cater for them and while they behaved very well they didn't have much to entertain them. But Regent has always geared its product towards adults so it's something to take into consideration if you are planning a family cruise. Would we cruise with Regent again? Of course, in fact we are already booked on the Voyager in 2013. Will we choose Navigator again? Probably not. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2012
Let me start by saying this was a very nice itinerary which is main reason we selected it. 9 nights vs. the typical 7 appealed to us. And we wanted to experience what is billed as "luxury, upscale" cruising. We had been to ... Read More
Let me start by saying this was a very nice itinerary which is main reason we selected it. 9 nights vs. the typical 7 appealed to us. And we wanted to experience what is billed as "luxury, upscale" cruising. We had been to Alaska previously on our own for 10 nights. Flew in to ANC, rented a car and drove up to Denali, down to Seward and everywhere in between. Stayed with locals in B&B's. Wonderful trip which at this point is best way to see Alaska--at your own pace on your feet. We so loved the first visit to Alaska, decided it was time to take a cruise througout this beautiful part of our country. I spent time reading previous reviews re. Regent generically and the 7 Seas Navigator specifically. They are spot on. The ship is showing her age, rear rooms shake, rattle and roll, as does the Prime 7 specialty restaurant and Deck 10 dining area. Our room was excellent motion wise--we had no issues. Service onboard in general is excellent. The people onboard are the crown jewel of Regent. Included premium liquors are indeed premium--single malts, Grey Goose, Wild Turkey, etc. Same for beer selection--anything you wanted, they offered at no addl. cost. Wines were very good--house white is Santa Magarita Pinot Grigio, reds were a bit lower quality but very drinkable. And the drinks did not skimp--you were poured a good drink every time. And as often as you dared. The biggest disappointment was dining. Much more limited selections at breakfast and lunch than we are accustomed to on Holland, Celebrity and Azamara. Several lunch cookouts were held by the pool. First was a hotdog and hamburger extravaganza--not elegant by any means. An Alaskan BBQ with king salmon followed couple of days later. That was excellent. Gave one true taste of Alaska's finest seafood items. The last day was a soup and stew variety presentation. Can't say much as stews seemed like amalgamation of many leftovers. We passed. The Prime 7 specialty restaurant was very disappointing. When a steak house has issues cooking beef and veal chops, can't make a decent shrimp cocktail, something is wrong. Both visits to Prime 7 meats were cooked improperly. Maitre'd was sympathetic but he does not cook. Compass Rose, the main dining room, is beautiful. Regrettably, the entrees were very small--we started ordering two meals each--and the quality was not equal to what we have experenced on other lines mentioned earlier. We are not dessert eaters--heavy emphasis on the heavy dessert menu. More emphasis on the entrees would make more sense. The deck 10 dining area-La Veranda-is buffet at breakfast and lunch. Breakfast was interesting as pancakes, french toast and waffles were all inedible. Again, maitre d was very disappointed and sympathetic. But he does not cook and could only offer alternatives. At that point, we just moved on to the rest of out day. Omelette's were very good, as was the fruit selection. In the evening deck 10 is converted to a sit down Italian restaurant. The menu is limited but quality was very good. Regrettably, no daily specials or changes in the menu for the entire trip meant two visits was enough. Lastly, the included shore excursions were well done. But many desirable excursions have a surcharge that in some cases equals what you would pay on another cruise line. In our estimation, the "all inclusive" Regent marketing is somewhat misleading. As an example, we visited Hoonah. Not much there except the locals have built the longest zip line in the world. If you want to try it, still costs over $100pp. That's not all-inclusive in our estimation. The included excursions would cost about $80-$100pp. on any other line. In summary, we did not see Regent's value proposition. For a modest room with small balcony, we paid $1388/day for this cruise. BTW, we usually take a suite on our cruises. If you subtract the cost we estimated generously at $700 per day for tips, beverages, excursions, meals, port charges, etc., the arithmetic for the room and transportation seems very high. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2012
My wife and I recently cruised along the Alaskan coast and chose for this cruise to try, for us, a new cruise line for this latest adventure: Regent Seven Seas and their ship, the Navigator. We had an inkling regarding the quality offered ... Read More
My wife and I recently cruised along the Alaskan coast and chose for this cruise to try, for us, a new cruise line for this latest adventure: Regent Seven Seas and their ship, the Navigator. We had an inkling regarding the quality offered by Regent Seven Seas when we received the most comprehensive and detailed joining instructions and tickets well prior to departure - some 58 pages worth and really a mini personal brochure. As part of the Regent package we flew with BA to Seattle and Alaskan Air to Anchorage. We spent a pre cruise night in the Anchorage Marriott hotel before making the 2 1/2 hour coach transfer to the embarkation port of Seward along the very scenic Seward highway. Seven Seas Navigator is a small cruise ship with capacity for 460 passengers. Regent operate an 'All Inclusive' system on their cruises which includes unlimited choices of ship's excursions, all alcoholic drinks and gratuities. We had booked a Deluxe Balcony suite and on arrival were very pleasantly surprised to find spacious accommodation, contemporary in style, and extremely well fitted out. All suites enjoy marble bathrooms with bath, a separate walk-in glass paneled shower and an abundance of L'Occitane toiletries. There is also an extensive walk in wardrobe with additional cupboard storage space. The suite fridge was also well stocked but hey, who wants to drink in their suite when there is a social life to be had and bars open all day. There are no inside cabins on board Seven Seas Navigator and, for those who may be interested, there are four launderettes. On arrival all suites were available for occupancy and a welcome glass of champagne was offered at embarkation in addition to the bottle of champagne awaiting in the suite. Seven Seas Navigator is not a big ship and it was very easy to find one's way around. The sailaway party was well attended, why shouldn't it be, the drinks were free. By way of a social introduction Regent organise, within an hour of sailing, a 'Block Party'. On an announcement by the Cruise Director passengers are encouraged to grab a glass and step outside their suite door to meet their neighbours. Staff members are in attendance while the Cruise Director and Hotel Manager attempt to meet every passenger. There was no formal or semi-formal dress code and elegant casual was the dress order. However, after 6.00pm approximately 60% of men did wear jackets. There are three restaurants on board, all operating a single sitting 'freestyle' dining system for all meals. An 'Al Fresco' poolside grill is available from 6.30 am till late. The main restaurant, The Compass Rose, operates an open seating dining and waiter only option for all meals: no reservations are required. The dinner menu in particular was a very comprehensive one and each evening was enhanced with two selections taken from the ship's main speciality restaurant, Prime 7. For those wishing buffet style meals both the veranda and Pool Grill were open for breakfast and lunch. The two speciality restaurants are Prime 7 and Sette Mari at The Veranda. The former, principally a steak and seafood fine dining restaurant does require pre booking. The latter, an Italian style brasserie, was again operated on a freestyle basis. Considering its size Seven Seas Navigator has a particularly large theatre, well tiered with additional side balconies, multiple entrances and aisles, and drinks tables at all levels. Navigator's production show team, The Jean Ann Ryan Singers and Dancers, were a very talented group of ten and apart from putting on four production shows they also featured in other entertainment venues both professionally and socially. Music for all shows and early and late evening dancing were courtesy of the ships eight piece orchestra. Cocktail piano music was provided by two additional pianists at selected cocktail bars. One particular show that should have particular mention was 'Cirque Navigator'. Despite the ship's and production team's size, this proved more spectacular than the cirque du Soleil show we recently saw on Celebrity Eclipse: that was some achievement. Navigator has a small but comprehensive library, an Internet venue, gym, spa and a selection of retail outlets, the ubiquitous Art gallery and of course a casino. Staff and crew numbered 375 in total and these were drawn from 40 nationalities to look after 460 guests. Guest nationality balance was American 395, British 48 and the balance from a number of other nations. This was obviously a port intensive cruise and there was one tender port, Sitka. At this port the tenders were run so efficiently that tender tickets were dispensed with almost immediately. Comprehensive port lectures and local interest lectures were given by Terry Breen, a most knowledgeable and authoritative lecturer who has produced an even better cruiser friendly guide book to Alaska's Inside Passage. The joy of a small ship in this particular environment is the fact that it can get much closer to the faces of the Glaciers. This was particularly well demonstrated on day one when we sailed amongst the crystal blue icebergs that had recently broken from the Hubbard Glacier. Ports visited were Sitka, Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan before finally disembarking in Vancouver. By far the outstanding visit was to Skagway where we took the opportunity to take the White Pass Scenic Railroad to Fraser in British Columbia, Canada and then continue by coach into the Yukon before returning to Skagway via the Klondike Highway. We did experience occasional vibration but this was mainly when navigational manoeuvres were being made in confined water areas but it was never a problem that affected our sleep or comfort. Overall this was an excellent cruise and the perfect way to do Alaska and we felt we had particularly good value for money and an enjoyable first time with Regent Seven Seas. The ship engenders a nice intimacy and we met and became quite friendly with many like minded discerning cruisers. In most areas Seven Seas Navigator certainly deserves its 6 Star rating though we would add that restaurant wise food and service quality lacked the depth offered by the Cunard Grills' experience: Entirely expected when considering the numbers being catered for at each meal in The Compass Rose. We would certainly have no reservations in recommending this ship and company to anyone who is considering a cruise with Regent Seven Seas, particularly over a short cruise period. We disembarked in Vancouver - a simple and efficient affair - and stayed at the Hyatt Regency Hotel while spending 3 days exploring this delightful city with its excellent restaurants. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2012
We were overwhelmed by the magnificence of Alaska. It's going to take some time to look back and appreciate all we saw. We were so glad that we did the Denali part of the trip first as you have the on and off the bus many times and ... Read More
We were overwhelmed by the magnificence of Alaska. It's going to take some time to look back and appreciate all we saw. We were so glad that we did the Denali part of the trip first as you have the on and off the bus many times and in and out of hotels 3 times, but it was handled very professionally and Regent did a great job. I know that some people are put off by having to ride in a "school bus" into Denali, but it has been re-fitted with comfortable seats and is fine for the trip and certainly not a reason not to go. We saw 9 Grizzlies, many Caribou, Moose, Eagles, and a herd of Dall Sheep trying to go to the Alaska. Unfortunately, we missed the Salmon running, but we saw so much else, it was a perfect time to go and we had sunshine every day. I'll review the cities in the rest of the report, but would like to say that there are too many souvenir shops in all the cities. Really reminded me of St Thomas. I think thats why we liked Denali so much. Overall, we had a great time, met some wonderful people and would recommend this trip to anyone going to Alaska. The ship was small, but we really like that. The all inclusive was great, there was no signing slips for drinks or wine every other minute. This might add some to the initial price but in the end it was more than worth it and probably saved some. The "free" excursions were great, and if you wanted something else you could get it. The guides were very versed on all subjects. We will certainly go on Regent Cruises again. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2012
This is our second cruise on the Navigator. We had some housekeeping problems on the first cruise but everything else was good so we decided to try it again. Embarkation was fairly simple and after having a glass of champagne our room ... Read More
This is our second cruise on the Navigator. We had some housekeeping problems on the first cruise but everything else was good so we decided to try it again. Embarkation was fairly simple and after having a glass of champagne our room was ready. Public rooms were nice and we really liked the library/computer area. The carpets throughout the ship needed replacing. Our suite had fresh flowers and was very clean. Our butler and steward were the best you could have and a credit to the ship but throughout our entire 11 days we had to call maintenance many times to fix the doorbell, toilet, shower for no hot water and door that kept flying open and broken balcony that rattled constantly and had to be welded. Lock on balcony door was rusted out so that door also rattled and would fly open in rough seas. The spa was small but the services were very good. My husband and myself enjoyed their massages. Prime 7 served a nice meal and the staff was very attentive, we found this to be the case with all the restaurants and room service. All of the restaurants were very clean with good selections. Shore excursions were ample and well planned. We were very pleased with the Alaska Chefs Table in Ketchikan and would highly recommend it. As to value for money we feel that the problems we had with our suite outweighed the other items. This is supposed to be a luxury cruise and when that term does not apply to your suite then Regent has a large problem. Our next cruise will not be with Regent. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2012
This was the most expensive cruise we had ever booked but the advertising made us think it would be worth it. When you board a ship and your heart sinks because the carpets are so shabby looking, is not a good omen for the remainder of the ... Read More
This was the most expensive cruise we had ever booked but the advertising made us think it would be worth it. When you board a ship and your heart sinks because the carpets are so shabby looking, is not a good omen for the remainder of the trip. This vessel is in dire need of refurbishment and indeed, at the end of this cruise it was rumoured to be going into dry dock for 2 weeks for some improvements. The cabin was spacious and well presented with a much valued bath and walk in wardrobe, but a large raised bubble in the middle of the carpet where somebody had tried to remove a stain did nothing to lift my spirits. Our friends' cabin next door had awful scuff marks on the walls and the furniture was very shabby. The weather was not good so the cabins creaked and groaned all night. We became experts at knowing where to strategically place cushions and towels to minimise movement squeaks. Any reported problems were promptly dealt with but I would never book a cabin at the rear again. The organisation was first class from arrival to departure - speedy and efficient so top marks there. On the whole, the staff were attentive and extremely pleasant but several times in the Compass Rose restaurant service fell well below the expected standard. We realised this was because we chose to eat well into the sitting when staff were being redeployed to other areas of the ship after the initial rush to get people out in time for the theatre presentation. This was such a shame because the food was truly excellent but service did not match that experienced on other cruise lines. If you have open dining you should have sufficient staff no matter what time people want to eat. A 30 to 40 minute wait to place an order is not acceptable. The trips were first class although better wet weather gear could have been provided on the Fort Stevens cycling event. Other trips provided excellent protective clothing which was very much needed and I would be better prepared on another trip to Alaska and take more of my own. Despite the weather, we came back from every trip smiling. One slight niggle about trips was that our $1,000 onboard credit could only be used for premium trips booked once on board and not in advance, which meant we were scrabbling to find something to spend the money on at the end of the voyage. I wouldn't book premium trips in advance again. As the journey progressed we were slowly seduced by the Navigator; by the fact that there was always somewhere to sit and have a drink, the evening entertainment, the daytime lectures, the quality of the food, the dedicated bar staff, the hardworking cabin staff and the feeling of relaxation that comes from knowing that everything is included in the price. When we disembarked at Vancouver we just wished that we had delayed the trip by one month to benefit from the makeover. Would we pay such a high price again? We're still debating that one but I suspect the answer might be yes. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2012
This was our second cruise with Regent, and the first on the Navigator. We cruised last January on the Mariner, and were less than blown away, so were somewhat concerned about what our experience would be like on the smaller Navigator. ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Regent, and the first on the Navigator. We cruised last January on the Mariner, and were less than blown away, so were somewhat concerned about what our experience would be like on the smaller Navigator. We need not have been worried...the ship and her crew were amazing! Embarkation in Fort Lauderdale was a breeze. It probably helped that there were only 500 passengers to check in, and we were in the last 100 or so, arriving at the pier at around 1:30. It was also a Tuesday, so the pier was not busy at all. It probably only took about 15 minutes from the time we entered the terminal until we were stepping onboard the ship...very nice. We were finally allowed into our cabins around 2:30. We found the cabin to be very large, with a nice walk-in closet and very nicely laid out bathroom with shower and separate tub. Our bags actually arrived before the safety drill, so I was able to unpack before the drill and sailaway, which was a first for us. As spacious and well laid out the cabin was, we were soon to find that it was exceptionally noisy (which is why I only rated it a 3). We have been on a lot of cruises, and we have never, ever heard our neighbors on either side of us...that changed with this cruise. It isn't that they were overly loud...it just seems as if the walls were extremely thin. Several other passengers complained of this throughout the cruise, so it wasn't just our cabin or neighbors. It probably didn't help that there were three people...two adults and one teen...in the cabin next to us. However, that cabin is NOT designated as a 3-person cabin in the Regent brochures, and indeed, their sofa did not pull out to a bed. Instead, a rollaway bed was delivered to them at the start of the cruise! I had specifically booked our room to be as far as possible from any of the 3-berth cabins because, quite frankly, I did not care to possibly be around children (I left mine at home!!). So you can imagine my frustration when I discovered that apparently Regent will make any cabin a 3-berth one if they find themselves overbooked (which was the case in our cruise). I do not know if the third person was the reason for the extra noise, but I doubt it, as I could hear the husband/father snoring at night, and if I tried hard enough, could actually make out what they were saying next door. Plus, the people above us must have been early risers, as we could hear them clomping around in the early hours, and then soon thereafter, the cabin stewardess would re-wake us with her vacuuming, which literally vibrated and shook the wall next to our bed every time she slammed the vacuum into the wall. I was amazed that I came home from this cruise more tired than when I left! But that was probably the biggest negative for us, and truthfully, it was more of an inconvenience than something that would ruin our cruise (although I will pick my cabin more carefully the next time). The only other thing that was somewhat negative was the soot that spewed out of the smokestacks all over the decks. We had noticed that there were black spots all over the deck chairs on Deck 11 (one deck above the pool deck), but didn't think anything about it. Well, after an hour or so on the deck our first day, we discovered that those black spots were from the soot of the smokestack (we could see it flying around), and it does NOT wash out. The laundry onboard tried to get the spots out of my new yellow bathing suit, but they just couldn't. To be fair, the concierge did offer to pay for a replacement, but I declined. I just didn't go up to Deck 11 to lounge around anymore. However, I do wish the response to my request to put signs up there warning people of the "soot danger" would have been taken more seriously. Based on the conditions of the chair cushions, this was not an isolated incident, and I just felt that perhaps even just a small notice would have been nice...at least my bathing suit might have been saved. From the moment we stepped onboard to the moment we left, we were treated like royalty by everyone on the crew. This was the most amazing crew we have ever cruised with, and could not believe the level of service we received. The cruise director, Lorraine Weimerskirch, was by far the best we've ever seen. She was engaging and fun, and was always "out in the open." Not only was she a fantastic singer, but she also was just a neat person to be around, and she literally made the cruise for us (in fact, we asked what her schedule is, so we can hopefully book another cruise with her). Surprisingly, the entertainment was fantastic as well. We had heard that it was less than stellar on other cruises, but again, it was the best we've ever seen. This particular group is nearing the end of their contract, and they have apparently all become fast friends, and it shows in their performances. We usually pass on the evening shows when we cruise, because we just don't find them very good...not so in this case! They were great! Food is always so subjective, and I will just say that it was very good on this cruise. Nothing to blow you away, but we certainly never had to send anything back and I certainly gained enough weight that it shows! We were not all that impressed with Prime 7...the steaks were just so-so, although the Dover Sole was very good. However, the service there was well above par, so that made up for a lot. The service in Compass Rose seemed rushed...we felt a little sorry sometimes for the waiters, as they had to run around, literally, to take care of all their tables. But we never had a surly waiter, and we found that if we told them ahead of time that we would not be having dessert or coffee, we could just enjoy our entrees and then leave whenever we wanted to. That kept our dining times down below 2 hours (we never had a dinner that took less than 2.5 hours on the Mariner). As for the pool grill, it was wonderful, and we ate breakfast and lunch there almost every day. If I couldn't find something I liked out there (my husband was always ordering a specialty burger), I could just walk inside to La Veranda and get some salads. We only did La Veranda for dinner once, and liked it, but are not really buffet fans (at least not for dinner). We definitely prefer the way it is done on the Mariner, where appetizers and desserts are buffet, but you order your entree off the menu, from a waiter. As for the wines, we were not very impressed. When a Bogle Cab was presented with a flourish at Prime 7, I had to laugh. Yes, Bogle is a very decent label...but when I'm cruising on a luxury line, I hope to have something presented to me that I cannot buy at my local grocery store. If we asked for something else, they would bring it without question or complaint...but we found that even the alternate wines were not always to our liking. Also, wines that were supposed to have been available (according to the list we were given) were no longer available (apparently they had run out, and not bothered to re-stock them). We ended up just not bothering with wine more often than not. We ran into some bad weather, and so had to miss our stops in Wilmington and St. Georges in Bermuda. We were disappointed, especially since Savannah was taken off the itinerary a few months ago, but the crew did a great job of taking care of us on the extra sea days. I have also heard several negative comments about the Destinations personnel, but we found them to be extremely helpful, with one exception. We were on the Dolphin Encounter in Nassau, and specifically asked the Destinations personnel if we should wear bathing suits. They told us, "Absolutely not...you will NOT get in the water." Thankfully, the Dolphin Encounter people had wetsuits we could use, because we most certainly DID get in the water...all the way up to our necks! That kind of information really should have been something the Destinations people were smart about. However, the excursions we did were all excellent, and we never really had that "round 'em up" feeling while waiting in the Seven Seas Lounge to be called for our excursion. In fact, two of them (Airboat Adventure in Port Canaveral, and the Dolphin Adventure) rank right up there as two of the best we've ever done. We hit some extremely rough seas between Charleston and Bermuda, and yes, the Navigator moves a LOT in rough seas. Thankfully we had our SeaBands, or else we might have been like so many other people (including the spa's hairdresser) who were unable to even get out of bed. Many, many people tried to crowd into the Navigator Lounge and the library, as that is as low and center as you can go on the ship. Only then did the ship feel a bit crowded to us...so we just went up to the pool deck, which, even though higher, is still in the center of the ship so the motion was not as bad (still bad though...water from the waves would hit the side of the ship and sprinkle down on us, even though we were way up on Deck 10!!!). We had friends traveling with us who did not like the layout of the ship at all, as they said it felt too crowded all the time to them. But we spent most of our free time on the pool deck, and it never felt overcrowded, so we came out of it with a different opinion...in fact, we loved the Navigator and her layout. If I had to say there was one thing that blew us away on this cruise, it would be the crew and service. When a bartender can remember your name after only meeting you once, and know exactly what you want to drink, that is impressive. When the cruise director participates in karaoke with the passengers, that is impressive (especially when she can really sing!). When the entertainers actually act as part of the crew, rather than just entertaining, that really enhances the experience (it was great fun talking to them around the ship). And when you get hugs from so many of them as you are leaving the ship (not without at least a few tears on my part), you really do feel as if they are family. Bottom line: Best cruise we've ever been on and I cannot wait to board the Navigator again!!! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2012
Prior to our Western Caribbean cruise on the Navigator we have limited experience of cruising other than two fantastic Mediterranean cruises on the iconic, elegant and very special Club Med 2. We chose Regent Seven Seas because of the ... Read More
Prior to our Western Caribbean cruise on the Navigator we have limited experience of cruising other than two fantastic Mediterranean cruises on the iconic, elegant and very special Club Med 2. We chose Regent Seven Seas because of the small size of the ships (Navigator has a maximum capacity of 490 passengers) and its all truly inclusive approach that included excursions. The cruise visited Key West, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Belize City, Guatemala, Roatan (Honduras) and Costa Maya. We can honestly say that our expectations were high as a result of the fantastic standard set by Club Med 2. We were not disappointed and, in many respects, our expectations were exceeded by our excellent cruise experience on the Navigator. Having read some of the previous reviews we did have our concerns eg. over reports of surly staff, tired decor and a noisy ship. We are fussy people so we went with eyes wide open. The ship is lovely - true the decor is sometimes 'beigey' and lacking some vibrancy but, considering the ship was built in 1999, it is luxurious, spotlessly clean and extremely well laid out. The ship was full to capacity but we never felt crowded or squeezed and the facilities are of a high quality. Our Penthouse A suite (1109) was on the highest deck for accommodations and towards the front of the ship. It was spacious -- with an ample walk in wardrobe, large bathroom with a separate and effective separate shower compartment, a lovely lounge area, Queen size bed and balcony. It was really well equipped including your own iPad, daily-replenished mini-bar and the usual TV/DVD player/iPod docking station. It lacked a Nespresso coffee maker but, apparently, that will be corrected from June this year. Suites have their own designated butler and hostess -- Ignatious and Florence were absolutely superb. Nothing was too much trouble and we often had chats about the weather, their origins and aspirations for the future. Ignatious was an outstanding butler -- pre-cruise we indicated online what our soft drink and alcoholic preferences were and, on our arrival, everything was as requested, down to the copious supply of soft fruit. Our daily preference for champagne was never a problem and the quality of all wines and refreshments were outstanding. Premium quality spirits such as Macallan and Glenmorangie malt whiskies and Armagnac were freely available. Florence was meticulous about every detail and kept our suite in tiptop order. With constant supplies of Hermes and L'Occitane toiletries we were truly spoilt. The choice of places to eat were the Pool side Grill/Salad Bar, the main restaurant -- Compass Rose, a buffet restaurant 'La Verandah' and the speciality restaurant cum steakhouse, 'Prime 7'. We naturally tried all but our favourite was La Verandah because the setting is bright and more colourful than the other restaurants, the food was consistently good and constantly changing and the staff were outstanding. The Maitre d', Stephano, was great -- always welcoming and truly interested in your preferences, day's activities and news. The head chef, Steve, was excellent -- always on hand to explain about the daily specials and carvery choices. The restaurant staff were really helpful, responsive and engaging -- Joy, Rod, Ronald, Titi worked tirelessly and cheerfully to serve you. We ate at the Compass Rose twice -- once independently where we found it large, a little cramped and somewhat impersonal and on the second occasion, as special table guests of the general manager, Michael Coghlan and his charming wife, Stephanie. In both restaurants the quality of food was good but not the standard we experienced on Club Med 2. One thing they seemed unable to consistently do right was to cook a steak rare -- whether as filet mignon or as a boeuf wellington. Wine choices, included in the inclusive package, were outstanding and the sommeliers went out of their way to find a wine to your taste. For example, Ronald (Prime 7 and La Verandah) listened to our preference for a robust wine to go with steak and came up with a really good Chilean Shiraz/Malbec blend. Staff remembered quickly our preference for wine, bottled water, etc. so that you were treated as individuals and with care. Prime 7, the speciality restaurant, did not really live up to expectations. The restaurant is too dark, overly stuffy in style and presentation and lacked the personal touch. We always try to engage with staff and, consequently, on most occasions get even better service -- we tried twice at Prime 7 but found it hard going. Again, it has a steakhouse speciality, but took two goes to get a rare steak cooked to order correctly. The Pool Grill and Salad Bar was excellent. It was our place to eat for preference for breakfast and lunch. At breakfast there was a good range of cereals, fresh fruit, some cooked options, and cold meats and cheeses. At lunch you could enjoy a range of fish and meat burgers cooked to order as well as other hot food options and salads. With the fantastic pool bar close by with its superb team of bar staff including Elvis, Maclon, Arthur and Jerel no-one was left short of refreshment -- alcoholic or otherwise. Indeed, the same team ensured that all the sun loungers in the sheltered pool areas were supplied with covers and complimentary pool towels and like La Verandah staff quickly got to know your preferences and anticipated when you might need a top up. For example, through the day we drank iced water or diet coke and, in the evening, chilled chardonnay. Often, top ups would appear without us having to ask -- and always with a cheerful smile and comment. Service was always personal and personalized. One criticism we have is that the quality of coffee in most areas of the ship was very mediocre -- hence why we'd love to have had a Nespresso machine in our suite. There was one exception to this -- in the Navigator Lounge was the bar/cafe 'Coffee Connections' where they served excellent Italian coffee made fresh to order. Even the staff admitted that the coffee elsewhere was under par -- so much so that you saw staff themselves having coffee made there. The evening entertainment was really good. Previous reports from other reviews that the evening shows were mediocre were the total opposite to our experience. The stars of the week were the acrobat/ballet/gymnastic duo of Caroline and Denys -- who single handedly brought standing ovations to their Cirque du Soleil equivalent -- La Cirque Navigator -- brilliant. They also performed alongside the season's singers and dancers who were consistently good. Special evenings with a comedian and a London West End female singer were equally good. On the penultimate evening the crew themselves produced a standing ovation for the Krew Capers -- a range of different performances from members of the crew ranging from dancing, Elvis impersonations and a range of songs. Our own suite hostess, Florence, was the lead singer in an Abba number and also in a Indonesian Traditional dance -- the quality of the performances was truly memorable. The excursions -- the vast majority of which are included in the price, were excellent. At every port of call at least 8 different free excursions were laid on and were well organized and attended. The staff who organized these events were effective in getting each person to the right guide and/or coach so that you never felt it was chaotic or a panic in leaving the ship. When you returned from a day or a morning out you were often greeted with the phrase, 'Welcome home, Mr and Mrs ... ' -- a nice touch. One criticism we have levied is that no staff from the ship accompany you on the excursion as a matter of policy -- some did as part of their free time. On Club Med 2 we always had a member of the ship's staff with us on an excursion so that, should a problem arise, you knew to whom to turn. We would have felt safer in the knowledge that our group would have speedy contact with the ship, if necessary. Furthermore, according to the company's brochure all gratuities were included and none 'were expected'. However, with no ship's staff accompanying you some guides and drivers took advantage and, on occasions, gathered us together at the end of a trip -- eg. the ATV trip into the jungle on Cozumel -- to do a promotional bit to glean more tips from the guests. At times, we felt coerced or pressured to give a tip to all and sundry. On some excursions no tip was clearly expected and the guide and/or driver was just happy to see that we were happy. Some left a tips box near the exit but made no song and dance about it. On our excursion into the rainforest nature reserve, our Guatemalan schoolteacher guide, Ana, was outstanding and we happily tipped her well because the quality of her work was exceptional. Other things we really liked was on the first full day a 'block party' was organized where guests from a block of suites, were invited to meet in the area outside the suite for a little party with canapes and drinks served by our butler, Ignatious and other staff. Senior crew including the ship's captain and the general manager, Michael, circulated round all the different suite blocks, to say a quick hello as we were meeting the wide range of people on our block -- it was a lovely introductory idea. Secondly, half way through the cruise we were invited to complete a questionnaire on how things were going to date. This included gleaning our views on all aspects of the cruise and any issues raised were addressed very speedily. The ship's management clearly take a keen interest in the guests' views and in responding to any suggestions or concerns. The weather for the 10 day cruise was excellent overall but after our visit to Guatemala a storm brew up in the evening and that night and the captain took the decision to change course to skirt the storm during the night to limit the discomfort tp passengers. This was an excellent decision because the night at sea could have been very choppy. The Captain and his crew kept us fully informed at all times and the staff ensured that our safety was paramount. The knock on effect of the storm was that the sea was too rough for us to dock at our last excursion port of call -- Costa Maya, so we had an additional whole day at sea. Again, we were kept fully informed and the entertainments staff worked really hard to provide other events so that we did not lose out -- for example, wine tastings, tours of the galley, card games, two Oscar films 'The Artist" and 'The Descendants', etc. The sheltered design of the pool area enabled us to continue to chill out and top up the tan and make the most of the friendly and personalized service of the pool area staff -- already highlighted. One gripe we had before the whole cruise was the booking procedure for non UK/USA residents. We live in France, near Toulouse, and booked our cruise via Thomas Cook in Cahors. RSSC advertises its cruises in France and have an agency in Paris. However, because our trip did not commence in the UK or USA, RSSC would only accept a booking from us for the cruise itself and we had to book or flights (from Toulouse to Heathrow to Miami all with BA), overnight hotel and airport and hotel transfers independently. Though we are at good at that kind of organization, it was an unnecessary hassle as far as we were concerned. We wrote to the MD in the UK before the cruise expressing our frustration over this. The MD did respond personally, saying that this was beyond RSSC's control and was caused by UK transport rules. It just seems bizarre that we could do it ourselves but a large organization like RSSC was not allowed to. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2012
We sailed out of Lauderdale on Feb 6 and we enjoyed every minute. I had read several negative reviews of this ship and was feeling very apprehensive as we embarked. The embarkation process was very smooth and we were in our cabin in no ... Read More
We sailed out of Lauderdale on Feb 6 and we enjoyed every minute. I had read several negative reviews of this ship and was feeling very apprehensive as we embarked. The embarkation process was very smooth and we were in our cabin in no time with a glass of champagne in hand (I do agree with some other reviews- the champagne was not great and gave me heartburn). However, it is a classy touch! Our penthouse suite was lovely and our butler, Sinjii, was very good as was our stewardess, Maranissa. Our cabin was always immaculate, bar fridge well stocked and my favourite wine always there as well. The suite was a bit of heaven! The bed was very comfortable. I found the balcony small but we did not spend that much time in the cabin so this was not an issue either. I do agree that the decor is a bit tired, but if that is the only criticism it does not detract from the experience. The ship is still very elegant and is being refurbished this spring. Also, it is a small ship so expect the rock and roll; if you want smooth I would suggest that you pick a big ship. To expect smooth on a small ship is an unrealistic expectation. We had only one rough night and that was it. So I can't complain here either. The food was fantastic as well. The included wines were quite good once you tasted several and found some to your liking. The beer was always cold and you were waited on all the time out on the decks and in the restaurants and bars. I am an experienced cruiser and this was by far the best service I have ever had. The main dining venue was very good. We steered clear of the buffet most of the time only because I am tired of ship buffets. We did have breakfast there once and it was fine. We also ate lunch at the back of the buffet outside and it was lovely. The salad selection is excellent. The ports were wonderful as well. Belize and Guatemala are very poor countries so expect that before you get there. I don't think I would go back to either country. It rained the entire day in Guatemala which was a bit disappointing but we made the best of it playing cards at the beach resort which on a sunny day would have been lovely. Our favourite excursions were cave tubing and the speed boats- book them early as they get wait listed very fast. The crowd was older than us on average. What truly impressed is the care given by the staff to older and more frail cruisers. From umbrellas to support to get into wheelchairs, the crew was amazing. But by far we really enjoyed the people we met within our age range. On a small ship you get to know people and we have met some very good friends; something we have not done on the larger ships. This will not be our last Regent cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2012
This was our second cruise with RSSC, our first with Navigator, and our 12th in all. The staff were the highlight - they were friendly and efficient, helpful and great fun too! Everything about the ship was great except that we also ... Read More
This was our second cruise with RSSC, our first with Navigator, and our 12th in all. The staff were the highlight - they were friendly and efficient, helpful and great fun too! Everything about the ship was great except that we also (like other reviews) had problems with the vibration in our cabin. The flight to the cruise was a nightmare - we were travelling from the UK via Newark and were concerned about the 90minute transfer time at Newark. However, we were assured that it would be fine. In the end we only caught the flight by being escorted to the front of the lines at customs and security and by running barefoot through the length of the terminal (no time to put my shoes back on!!). As it was, we caught the flight with no time to spare (they closed the plane doors behind us as we boarded) 90 minutes is not enough and RSSC should know this! From that point on, however, the trip was a dream - everything worked smoothly, the service was great, no issues at all. We were allocated a great hotel, with a lovely room and good breakfast included. Embarkation was quick and easy. Even though we had booked a window suite, we were upgraded to a balcony room, which was a nice extra. Our room was excellent - well equipped and beautifully clean, with everything working perfectly. The only issue was that the vibration the first night was appalling, when the seas were quite high - it woke us up several times and often it felt like we had hit something - a bit worrying as we sailed 2 days after the Costa Concordia sank!! It was never as bad again during the trip but it is obviously an issue in bad weather. The food was great in all of the restaurants - no issues with any of them. Good selections, well-cooked, good-sized portions (not too large), and always delivered to the table fresh and hot. The service was really outstanding - all of the staff were so lovely, so much fun to talk to, and so attentive without being servile at all. They were definitely the best I have ever encountered on a ship. This was true in all areas - particularly the room stewards and the waiters. I cannot speak highly enough of them. One highlight of the cruise was the jazz theme. There were 9 top-class jazz musicians and singers on the cruise and they gave at least 2 performances every day. They were excellent, melding as if they had always played together and playing a great variety of traditional jazz pieces. By the last evening performance, it was standing room only to hear them!! The other entertainment we attended was the crew show. We only went to that because our room staff were taking part and are so glad we went - they were fabulous, presenting a show which was varied and entertaining and showed how talented amateurs can be!! After our first night onboard, with all of the vibration, we said never again would we travel on Navigator but, by the end of the cruise, we were won over by the great ship, excellent facilities, and mostly by the wonderful staff. We will definitely travel with her again, but maybe make sure we have a forward cabin!! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2012
Our second Regent cruise - both on the navigator in the same suite. This time was as outstanding an experience as the first was a few months ago. I've worked all my life in luxury hotels, mostly in the US. I still work in a nearby ... Read More
Our second Regent cruise - both on the navigator in the same suite. This time was as outstanding an experience as the first was a few months ago. I've worked all my life in luxury hotels, mostly in the US. I still work in a nearby Hilton because I enjoy the hospitality business so much. Navigator provides service and quality in both food and beverage service and in cabin housekeeping that exceeds that available in any of the 19 land based hotels I'm helped run. The ship does things that astound me. I can no longer drink alcohol. After the second night underway, the waiters began to silently remove the wine glasses from my place at the table without being asked. It's open seating so there was no reservation with my name or cabin number on it so that they'd know. They must have passed the word that the old guy with the short hair couldn't drink. It happened in all three restaurants. I still can't believe it. During the 30 meals we ate on board I saw only one serving error anywhere within my sight range. One waiter reversed the appetizers for the two ladies at a nearby table. No other mistakes. That's overwhelming. The suite was large and comfortable. The steward knew when we were out of the room and did his work without ever disturbing us while we were there. He did have trouble remembering to refill the ice bucket when he turned down our bed at night and that's the only error in housekeeping we encountered. The bottle of gin the Regent put in our mini bar got down to the last inch or two and, somehow, was replaced with a new one before I knew my wife needed it. I couldn't find anything unpleasant anywhere. I can't imagine there are people that do. We asked for and got a kitchen tour and a bridge tour. That was serious fun for me. We had dinner with the Staff Captain the night following the Costa grounding and got his viewpoint on that event. The whole cruise was outstanding - we surely hate flying to the departure port and back but once Regent gets you on-board nobody could be unhappy. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2012
The staff was excellent throughout the cruise. They were always helpful and friendly. The food was the best that we have had on any cruise. It was uniformly excellent. The wine list is good and the bar brands included in the price are very ... Read More
The staff was excellent throughout the cruise. They were always helpful and friendly. The food was the best that we have had on any cruise. It was uniformly excellent. The wine list is good and the bar brands included in the price are very good. The cabin was well appointed with a walk in closet and granite counters in the bath. Bath amenities were very good. We did notice the vibration in the aft part of the ship that has been mentioned in other reviews. I would be hesitant to book a cabin in that part of the ship. Our hotel in Ft. Lauderdale was an Embassy Suite. It was obvious that it got a lot of heavy use and did not meet our expectation of a luxury hotel stay. The transfer from the airport to the hotel went well but the other transfers were late and very poorly organized. We were told where to wait for the bus to the ship from the hotel and that an announcement would be made when it was ready to leave. The bus was an hour late an no announcement was made when it started boarding. Neither the hotel or transfers met our expectation of luxury. The shore excursions were very spotty. Only one met our expectations and one was so overcrowded that we cancelled a similar excursion later in the trip. Check with the activities desk on-board to get details about shore excursions. They are very helpful and knowledgeable. We did not see many of the entertainers but enjoyed the couple of shows that we attended. We enjoyed most of the ports and itinerary, especially St. Barths. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2011
This was a 24-day cruise through the Caribbean and up the Amazon, and we went into it with some concerns. We've cruised many times before (Princess, Holland-America, Celebrity and Regent), but those were shorter cruises and on larger ... Read More
This was a 24-day cruise through the Caribbean and up the Amazon, and we went into it with some concerns. We've cruised many times before (Princess, Holland-America, Celebrity and Regent), but those were shorter cruises and on larger ships. We wondered if 24 days would be too long, would a small ship be confining or uncomfortable, were there specific issues with the Navigator itself (we'd read of some complaints about vibration). The answers to all of those concerns was an emphatic NO. This turned out to be the cruise of a lifetime and worth every penny. Embarking: We live in Florida and thus received a discount since Regent didn't have to buy us an airplane ticket or put us up overnight prior to departure. The Ft. Lauderdale port was easy to access directly from the garage nearby, and embarkation was prompt and uncrowded. It was almost silly how many staff people were around to say "thanks for sailing with us" or "have a pleasant trip" or simply welcoming us. We came onboard at 2 and were in our rooms by 2:20, and the bags showed up by 3:00. The lifeboat drill came later and was well-handled. Since it is a small ship, there is only one muster station and easy to find. Room: Regent excels with huge rooms and balconies, and ours was no exception. Our stewardess, who had been on other ships, had just joined the Navigator. She promptly introduced herself and was wonderful throughout the cruise, very early learning our preferences in fruits and beverages, and when we liked to go to meals. Everything seemed to be top quality, from the bathroom to the beds to the TV/internet access. Restaurants: In the main restaurant (Compass Rose) we stumbled upon a fantastic waiter and sommelier and almost always asked to be seated in that area of the dining room ... with no problems. We always ate at a table for two by the window on our own timing. Again, the Maitre d' knew our preferences, as did the waiter -- another sign of the special treatment that you receive on Regent Navigator. The service was equally good in the informal dining area called Veranda, for lunch or breakfast (buffet service). We found the food to be excellent in Compass Rose, very good in the Veranda, and also very good in the fancy (and free) Prime restaurant. Our preference, though, was the Compass Rose. And the service, and presentation, is what I'll remember most. Staff: I've touched on this before, but the thing that really jumped out at us was how cooperative all of the staff was -- not just with the paying customers but especially with each other. No one seemed to be slacking off. If there was a customer who needed something, someone jumped in to take care of it -- whether it was filling a glass of water, getting a bottle of water, or whatever. It was immediately taken care of. It was almost difficult to determine who exactly was responsible for a specific thing because every staff person seemed to feel a personal responsibility to help you. Oh, there were some special people. The waiter, the stewardess, the person who started up the coffee bar early each morning and who knew what type of coffee you wanted even before you asked. But the entire crew seemed exceptional well-trained and customer-focussed. The Cruise Director, Jamie, was exceptional and seemingly knew everyone onboard by the time we debarked. Our onboard lecturer had fantastic knowledge about the Amazon which she shared with us each day and which helped to make the trip special. Public Spaces: We don't have any interest in a casino (if you want that, go to Vegas), or in duty-free shops onboard (if you want that, go ashore), or in buying artwork on a ship, and so the small space devoted to those things didn't bother us. In fact that was pretty nice. The theater was nicely laid out and able to hold just about everyone on the ship. The library is small, though equipped with enough computers, and daily downloads of newspapers from around the world. Individual lounges are also small but, to us, adequate for the number of potential users. Ports/Excursions: Some of the excursions were less than spectacular (e.g., a brief bus trip around St. Barts) while others were wonderful, such as the shore excursion to a village on the Amazon or a snorkeling trip in Grand Turk. Since these are all included in the base price, it is hard to find fault with any of them. Prior Concerns: I mentioned that we'd been concerned about possible vibration on the ship based on comments from others. Our room was towards the stern where this is supposed to be an issue. And yes, there was some vibration especially as the ship was docking or coming out of a port. But it was not at all objectionable. Since it is a smaller ship, there was a noticeable rocking and rolling when we encountered 7-9 foot seas or 10-foot swells, yet to us it was not an issue (we didn't bother with dramamine). In a way it helped us to feel that we were a part of the ship unlike what you might feel if you were on a 3,000 passenger megaship. It's a special feeling when you dock alongside a huge ship and see their lines of passengers getting on or off whereas our ship seemed almost like a private yacht. Disembarkation: Very easy and fast and well-organized, with some of the crew standing by to say goodbye. Wow, we hated to leave this ship! We're ready to cruise again, but our first priority is to go on the Navigator. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2011
My husband and I are 73 and 70 years old and have been on 55 cruises before this one on the Regent. Boarding: We arrived at the terminal at 11:30 AM but waited until 1 PM to board and 2PM for the cabins to be ready. Next time we will ... Read More
My husband and I are 73 and 70 years old and have been on 55 cruises before this one on the Regent. Boarding: We arrived at the terminal at 11:30 AM but waited until 1 PM to board and 2PM for the cabins to be ready. Next time we will arrive later. The Ship The Navigator is small and easy to "navigate" The pool is never crowded but the only "walking" deck is deck 11 which can be very sunny and windy as there is no cover. The Navigator Lounge (one of 3) is dark and small but specialty coffees are available after 7AM. The Explorer Lounge has space for dancing but during the day is filled with passengers partaking in organized games and is not available for relaxing and reading. The Library and Computer Lab are one and very busy as all who cruise over 21 days receive free internet use. The Navigator does not do well in seas over 5 feet. It rocks and rolls and creaks and squeaks. Eating in the Veranda on deck 10 is difficult during swells. Cabins We had a penthouse B which was very roomy with a wonderful walk-in closet, large bathroom with tub and glass enclosed shower. Many lotions, shampoos, bath gels,etc. are replaced with alacrity. Butler Teddy and Stewardess Yenti were fabulous. The balcony was small but adequate but starting to rust and show age. Dining We ate breakfast and lunch in the Veranda where selections were many and tasty. We found dinner there lacking. Compass Rose (the main restaurant) was excellent I am gluten free and was accommodated totally. Prime 7 (steak house) was just OK. Entertainment We found the entertainment lacking except for the resident singers and dancers. Many nights it was just one of them soloing. Not a whole lot of money was spent on entertainerment. Lectures by Terry Breen, Regent's resident authority on South and Central America was excellent . She was so entertaining and with her knowledge we yearned for her lectures not to end. We love to play bridge but one-half of the small card room was occupied many days by 6 Brazilian immigration officials going over our visas. (They totally enjoyed their 6 days with us!) There are not enough areas available for providing enrichment programs. Excursions One cannot complain because most are included in the cruise fare. We can only say that many of the difficulty ratings were misleading. Research by the excursion staff seemed non-existant. We would rather pay and get quality excursions. Disembarkation Completely orderly--everyone was off the ship by 9:30 AM. Most of the passengers were repeaters on Regent but many have not sailed on the Navigator, their smallest ship. Most said they would not sail on her again. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2011
If I'd never been on a cruise before, this cruise wouldn't have been bad (although, for the money, I still would have been disappointed). Given that I've cruised with this line previously (including with the Paul Gauguin ... Read More
If I'd never been on a cruise before, this cruise wouldn't have been bad (although, for the money, I still would have been disappointed). Given that I've cruised with this line previously (including with the Paul Gauguin when it was part of the line) AND just completed a cruise on Azamara earlier this year, this trip proved to be far below expectations. With the exception of the housekeeping fiasco, all of my comments are of a comparative nature (to the past RSSC cruises and the recent Azamara cruise). I'll start with the area that 'stood alone' in that it was bad in any context: Housekeeping. We were fortunate to have an extraordinary stewardess (Jocelyn) for the first 1/2 of our cruise and cannot say enough good things about her. She exemplified everything I would expect from a high-end (i.e., expensive) cruise (or hotel, for that matter) experience. She was friendly, attentive, efficient and professional. Unfortunately, our positive experience with housekeeping came to an abrupt end when Jocelyn fell ill and we fell into the RSSC Navigator housekeeping abyss. There did not appear to be any consistency to the personnel or the process associated with tending our cabin. The times, people and level of upkeep were all over the map. Worst of all, our cruise ended (literally, the last night) with no service at all. I happened to catch a stewardess in the hall tending another cabin (at close to 9PM) and asked if there would be no housekeeping that evening. To her credit, she looked embarrassed that I even need ask and inquired as to whether our stewardess had ever appeared. Of course, she had not (whoever she was supposed to be that night). Bottom line is that we received no housekeeping at all that night. We'd not been left with the door signs (in the room every night when Jocelyn was working) for indicating a desire for service and had called earlier in the evening (an 'interesting' process whereby you press the 'stewardess' button on your phone and await a return call) to request service; unfortunately, no response ever came from that. While we were not incapable of tending our own cabin and had no urgent need of any particular housekeeping service, this is one of the things that makes the luxury experience a luxury. Clearly, this left an incredibly bad taste in our mouths and a lack of desire to expend our resources on another RSSC cruise. Other areas that were not nearly so negative on their own, but paled in comparison to past RSSC cruises and that of Azamara were: Dining: The dining rooms (La Veranda, Compass Rose, Pool Deck and Prime 7) were all fine (not amazing, but fine). Room service, on the other hand, was spotty. On multiple occasions, when ordering a meal (breakfast, lunch and dinner at various points over the 10 days) and specifying that it would be for TWO guests, we were served without the 'extras' (i.e., utensils, napkins, plates, condiments, etc.) expected (and eventually, specifically requested) for TWO people. Additionally, unless specifically requested, food obtained from room service did not come with anything other than that specifically listed on the room service menu (also significantly abbreviated from previous cruises) - as an example, if you ordered soup, you needed to order bread and butter separately if you wanted them. Public Rooms/Cabins: The primary area of observation here is that the Navigator is ready for a bath. Carpeting was worn and stained throughout the ship and in the cabin. Activities/Excursions: While the few organized excursions in which we participated were okay (again, not excellent, just okay), they were disorganized. Delays were the standard (and not due to weather related issues as can sometimes occur and is entirely forgivable). Something that Azamara did wonderfully (and RSSC not at all on this cruise) was to have a local representative board the ship in advance of disembarkation at every port (often the night prior) to provide information and MAPS for that port. I found this to be extremely beneficial on those occasions when I chose to explore independently. Service: With the exception of housekeeping, service was very good in some areas and spotty in others. Again, not awful; however, my previous experiences with both RSSC and Azamara included consistently excellent service across the board. Value-for-Money: This is the biggie. I cruised Azamara (7 days in Italy on the Journey) in April of this year and spent less than half what the 10 day Navigator cruise cost (P.S. I cruised a single traveler with NO single supplement in an equivalent cabin). The ONLY difference for which I benefited was that of 'free' (higher-end beverages are not free on RSSC) alcohol. For those thousands of dollars, several people could not have consumed that much 'free' alcohol. Long story, short - this, in addition to all of the above, will be why my next cruise is on Azamara and NOT on RSSC. Read Less
Seven Seas Navigator Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.3
Dining 4.5 4.1
Entertainment 3.5 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.6
Family 3.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.8

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