1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Regent Seven Seas Cruises
  4. Regent Seven Seas Cruises Cruise Reviews
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
We have sailed on Regent's 'sister' line, Oceania Cruises, several times and have had excellent experiences, so when we were searching for a higher end cruise line to Alaska and found Regent and learned it was all-inclusive, ... Read More
We have sailed on Regent's 'sister' line, Oceania Cruises, several times and have had excellent experiences, so when we were searching for a higher end cruise line to Alaska and found Regent and learned it was all-inclusive, we decided to give them a try. Overall it was a good experience but I would not rate the experience as highly as I have rated the Oceania cruises we have experienced. Ship: While the ship has been updated, the decor is lacking in appeal. The main carpet throughout the ship is dated in style though it looks new. The multi-story atrium wall across from the bank of elevators is a dark brown with some blown glass pieces that look dark and dreary. The artwork throughout the ship is contemporary but not to my taste Our cabin 732, a Veranda suite, was appealing with comfortable furnishings. The bathroom had marble and granite with a roomy shower -- no tub. Dining: Marina has two truly speciality restaurants. Prime 7 for steak and Chartreuse for French cusine. They turn the breakfast/lunch buffet restaurant, La Veranda, into Sette Mari for Italian themed cusine in the evening which was quite good so much so we went back a second time. The carbonara was very good. Prime 7 was excellent. We ordered a ribeye steak and Alaskan King Crab and made our own shared surf and turf. Both were excellent and we enjoyed this dinner tremendously. However, the people seated at the table next to us ordered lobster and we could overhear them complaining that it was overcooked and they were disappointed Chartreuse was our poorest most disappointing meal of the week. I ordered a tenderloin steak -- it was tough and not flavorful. The cheese souffle, which had to be ordered 20 minutes ahead of time, was ok -- not bad but not the best souffle I have had. Our first evening we dined in the main dining room, Compass Rose. I ordered the fish special of the evening which was pan fried red snapper. Something must have happened to my order as it took a long time and the waiter as well as maitre d came by to apologize for the wait and ensure me my meal would come soon. When the fish finally did arrive it was over cooked and dry. Other meals we had at Compass Rose were much better including our last evening on board during which I had a crusted baked salmon which was cooked perfectly and very tasty. We had breakfast each day at LaVeranda. I initially was impressed that their cooked to order egg station would take your order and table number and then deliver it to you. On Oceania, one of my main complaints for their similar breakfast station was that you placed your order and then had to stand with alot of other people waiting. Regent's ordering system was an improvement, with the exception of one morning where they must have lost my order and I waited and waited. My husband was finished with his breakfast and I was still waiting for mine. I had to ask wait staff a couple of times to check on my order. Lunches at the Pool Grill were all very good. In general, the wait staff throughout the restaurants are all very professional and eager to serve and please. Being all-inclusive, we enjoyed wine with every dinner and the somms kept our glasses full. The all inclusive for drinks and wine was one of the top experiences on Regent -- there was no waiting for a bill at the end of a meal or in one of the lounges. When we were finished we just got up and left. Entertainment and Activities: While I enjoyed several of the shows put on by the onboard singers and dancers, these were not to the taste of my husband. One evening was a country-themed show which he would not even go to so that evening we watched a movie in our cabin. Since the Mariner is a small ship there were not multiple concurrent choices for evening entertainment. The first night and a subsequent night they had a magician, Fred Becker with his wife/assistant who also sang. He put on a great show both nights they performed. He also did a workshop and taught a trick or two and answered questions which was interesting. On Oceania, there was a string quartet that played nightly. Regent did not have this. They had a duo with a guitar and a singer who were good but they were not in the Observation Lounge during the pre-dinner cocktail time. Playing at that time every evening was a pianist who played well but it was very much background music and not entertainment that you sought out. Our other issue with the entertainment was that shows do not start until 9:30 p.m. We were generally done with dinner by 8 or 8:30 p.m. which meant that we had time to kill before the show started. Moving up the show time to 9 p.m. would be a great help to how an evening flows for passengers. The shows were mostly sparsely attended with the theater on the main floor more than half empty and very few seats taken in the balcony. Moving up the time to start earlier I think would help draw a larger audience. Activities were few on board, although we did particpate a few days in trivia and my husband did the mensa quiz. The enrichment lectures on Alaska and wildlife were all interesting and well delivered. Cruise Director: The cruise director Andy was very outgoing. I saw and interacted with him and his wife, Tammy, who serves as social hostess, more than any other cruise director/team on any ship I have sailed on. Andy was at every show walking around and talking with people prior to the show. Tammy also was very friendly and talkative. They are excellent respresentives and ambassadors for the Regent brand. Ports and Shore Excursions: Another benefit of Regent is that we had many shore excursion options from which to choose that were included in the cruise fare. However, the best 'port 'was actually the afternoon we sailed into Disenchantment Bay and approached Hubbard Glacier, all while on the ship. We staked out a prime viewing spot earlier in the afternoon at the Observation Lounge which is forward on the top deck. The day we sailed in the weather was outstanding! The cruise director, the cruise enrichment lecturer, Eric Ball (who was excellent -- I attended all three of his talks) both said it was the best weather day all season for Hubbard Glacier. Being a smaller shiip, the captain was able to take us in extremly close to the glacier and we spent quite a bit of time 'hanging out' there. It was a festive, fun party atmosphere with all of the other passengers. Other shore excursions we took: In Sitka, we went two-person kayaking which was very scenic and enjoyable; hiking the Chilkoot Trail, although we had several older (in their 80s) passengers who clearly were not phycially fit enough to be on this excursion, which was rated a 3, the top difficulty rating. Consequently, we had to go very slow on the hike and continually had to keep waiting for them to catch up. I was concerned that one of them would fall going up or down the terrain. So this put a damper on this hike, although the trip ended with river raft ride along a river where we saw so many bald eagle I lost count. We also did a hike which was rated a 2 in difficulty that was a leisurely stroll through the Tongas National Forest with an extremely knowledgeable nature guide. The highlight of this excursion was that we were able to see lots of salmon swimming upstream. Another excursion was a 10-person canoeing trip to the Mendenhall Glacier. The canoeing ended up being more challenging than expected but it was very enjoyable and we got as close to the face of the glacier as we were allowed. We also went by Nugget Falls and were able to get out of the canoe and get some great photos in front of the falls. Overall: One of the reasons we were attracted to Regent originally was that the ship is a smaller ship -- under 700 passengers. However, this ended up in some respects being somewhat of a negative to the overall experience. Sometimes we were the only couple or perhaps one of two or three couples in the Observation Lounge or Horizon Lounge. Many areas of the ship were empty and 'boring'. The best times on board were when there were people filling the room and creating some buzz or excitement, such as when we approached Hubbard Glacier, and another late afternoon as we sailed the Inside Passage and people again gathered in the Observation Lounge to look for orcas and humpback whales, which we were delighted to see! The all-inclusive experience definitely has benefits. Passengers looking for a very quiet, small ship experience will be quite pleased with Regent. I would consider sailing with them again depending, of course, upon itinerary and pricing. However, for the overall experience, our next couples cruise will be back on Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
My travel agent booked this cruise for myself and my husband. I did not read any reviews on about this cruise or ship until after we had already booked the tour. As we trust our agent very much. However, after reading the reviews, I was ... Read More
My travel agent booked this cruise for myself and my husband. I did not read any reviews on about this cruise or ship until after we had already booked the tour. As we trust our agent very much. However, after reading the reviews, I was quite upset and almost ready to cancel the getaway all together. I am very happy that we didn't cancel and went on this cruise. Although we read in many reviews that the food was mundane or just ok, we felt that it was great. We saw many people state how the ship was old, musty and rusted; however we did not see this. As to us it was very beautiful. We stayed in the Horizon Suites and couldn't have been more comfortable. The service on the ship was complete accommodating, organized and did everything they could for us to make sure we were happy. We were able to book all the excursions that we wanted with no issues, while some we were put on a waiting list, they still made sure we somehow were able to join the rest of the passengers in these adventures. Not everything was "perfect" as nothing always is. There were a few hiccups along the way but nothing to be upset about. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
This is a terrific cruise line. The staff was a wonderful cruise. Every meal delicious; prepared and presented beautifuly. The suite was very well appointed and the room attendant took spotless care. The only disappointment was the lack ... Read More
This is a terrific cruise line. The staff was a wonderful cruise. Every meal delicious; prepared and presented beautifuly. The suite was very well appointed and the room attendant took spotless care. The only disappointment was the lack of entertainment. It was very hard to find live musical entertainment early in the evening. It seemed all of the music was at off hour and you had to hunt to find it. This was a real missed opportunity. A combo with singer in the lounge a 5:00 would be lovely. They had an enrichment speaker but could have used another on another subject matter. The exercise facility was adequate and the spa was serviceable but not luxury. I had a massage in the spa and it was good and the spa prices were reasonable for a luxury line. Overall we had a wonderful cruise but we did miss nightly pre-dinner lounge entertainment. We also missed hearing music as we walked about the ship. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Chose this because cruise on explorer last year was great. Sadly this was a waste of money and took until day six to sort all issues out. Aft cabin ( 675) intolerable because of vibration. Bought this specifically for balcony size. ... Read More
Chose this because cruise on explorer last year was great. Sadly this was a waste of money and took until day six to sort all issues out. Aft cabin ( 675) intolerable because of vibration. Bought this specifically for balcony size. Moved to ( downgraded) veranda suite ( 754) Filthy balcony with caulking between teak boards stripping out and staining carpet, clothes shoes. After carpenters tried to fix ( apparently they already knew about this) we had to move again to 817 veranda suite which was OK. Offered $1000 pp towards next cruise ( not refund!!) Special diet ( coeliac) organisation awful. Food generally very very average . La veranda by time back from shore excursions bereft of any decent food. Compass Rose closed at least twice for lunch. Dried up scrapings on offer and empty dishes failing to be replenished. Chaotic end of dining service restaurant with sudden changing to get ready for dinner while still diningWines poor quality ( unless of course you pay the extra) Staff almost invisible. Chartreuse noisy chaotic and more like a cafe. Prime 7 average. Even had an offer from cruise director who was having lunch next to using La Veranda to take my dirty plates from my table when the waiter failed to clear up! Drinks, when could find someone to order, frequently failed to be delivered. This was particularly evident at pool and in La Veranda Three staff worth mentioning plus the Butler who were all excellent. Simone, the Maitre D in La Veranda tried very hard to redeem situation and personally was the best service ever.. Janina, the Exec Concierge responded quickly but did not follow up on first occasion. She was practically helpful . Allisone in La Veranda tried hard to organise dietary requirements. Guest lecturer awful. Went on one occasion and he was ill prepared, unfocussed and side commentaries were made assuming that all his audience were Americans. Shore tours were mostly excellent but started at 0800. After talking with fellow travellers on this ship it was evident that even the most faithful RSS clients were exasperated. I am awaiting the company's comments on the whole experience but I am not going to hold my breath! Conclusion is simple. Don't go on this ship unless you are willing to pay a lot of money for a poor service food and perhaps accommodation Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Well what a very poor cruise. Regent has gone from elegance to budget. Staff are sloppy. Spill a drink and just walk off. Order a cocktail and end up with anything but what was ordered. Staff seem to not understand English when it suits ... Read More
Well what a very poor cruise. Regent has gone from elegance to budget. Staff are sloppy. Spill a drink and just walk off. Order a cocktail and end up with anything but what was ordered. Staff seem to not understand English when it suits them. Entertainment zero. Towels thread bare. Even holes in bath towels and mats. Could not believe it. Dress code really? Baseball caps in main dinning room. Shorts worn everywhere after 6pm. Excursions started at breakfast time and not back till afternoon so no breakfast or lunch. Saves them a fortune. I really thought it was a bad dream. Paid a fortune and received zero for the money. Officers had family aboard and staff seem to eat in public areas. Nice to line up for a coffee after staff are served. Unbelievable. Regent are on the way out and the sooner the better. Keep well away. Complimentary wine very poor and seems to be a push to buy the premium range. Prime 7 lobster raw. Chatreuse appalling. Bar staff couldn’t make a decent martini and didn’t care less anyway. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Regent continues to be our cruise line of choice. Everything is taken care of and they do not nickel and dime you. Staff is very accommodating and service is 1st rate. As soon as your glass is empty someone is offering another drink or ... Read More
Regent continues to be our cruise line of choice. Everything is taken care of and they do not nickel and dime you. Staff is very accommodating and service is 1st rate. As soon as your glass is empty someone is offering another drink or glass of wine. Food in all venues was excellent with wonderful choices in Compass main dining room and included availability each night of basics (steak, lobster tails, etc.) . Entertainment staff was talented in shows and accommodating when participating with guests in other venues (Beatles night and Bar B que were both spectacular and everyone out there dancing and singing). Specialty restaurants were also wonderful. Casino staff very friendly and eased pain of losing. Some excursions could be improved as to scope and content. Tour of Malta particularly disappointing as coordination with harbor cruise resulted in missed ferry. Voyager facilities and public areas were spotless and in good repair. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We sailed from Amsterdam to New York. The ship was great. It is small which I liked but it would have been nice to have more public space with more comfortable chairs. The remodel they did in June was lovely but more focused on design ... Read More
We sailed from Amsterdam to New York. The ship was great. It is small which I liked but it would have been nice to have more public space with more comfortable chairs. The remodel they did in June was lovely but more focused on design instead of comfort. Our room was lovely and was in a great location. I LOVED the walk-in closet and bathroom. Room Service food service was EXCELLENT...always on time or early! Our Room Stewards were very good. The dining room was lovely and food was very good. Our itinerary was very good and the captain and crew were focused on our safety by skipping one port to avoid a storm. Most of the entertainment was very good. Some of the singers were "weak" but they sure gave it a lot of effort. Cruise Director Ray was a real showman and a wonderful entertainer with a fabulous voice! Piano man, Clive, was delightful. He should have been in a bigger lounge though. Free access to the Internet was GREAT! The daily schedule of activities was a bit repetitive...same activities every day. And you better get to the games at least 15 min early or they won't let you play! The people who ran the games were the singers and dancers. Some were great but most didn't like running the games and it showed. Most of the shore excursions were very good but we did not like waiting in the lounge for the tour tickets. This could have been handled much better. The enrichment lecturers on arctic animals and the history of the North Atlantic were interesting but there were no programs about any of the port destinations. All port info was on the website and there was no one on the ship to ask questions about the ports. And there was no info on the website that free shuttles would be available in the ports. This was disappointing. Our flights that Regent booked for us to Amsterdam were great and on time but when we arrived in Amsterdam, no one from Regent was there to meet us. We only had 4 hours to get to the ship and this was very unsettling to have no one there to take care of us. The phone numbers I had on our documents to call were in Florida and Belgium! After 1 1/2 hours and the help of the Airport Information Desk, we finally got a Regent agent to come see us and they informed us we were not on their list. I had them check if we were on the ship and thankfully, they said yes, but we would have to pay to get to the ship. We booked our flights thru Regent so transfers were included but they said NO. They got us an Uber and charged $200 to our room. We got on the ship by 4pm which was a bit late, but we made it as the ship sailed at 5pm. After contacting our travel agent and complaining to Destinations team, we did get a refund but no apology from Regent for not meeting us. Then halfway thru the trip, Destinations sent us a form to fill out about our flights home and true to form, they told us we had no transfers....they had been cancelled 4 months BEFORE we booked the cruise! Wouldn't you think they would have re-checked this after we had a problem arriving? But no. So after contacting our travel agent again and complaining to the Cruise Consultant, we were informed the next day that we did have transfers and we finally got a lame apology for being left at the airport (only 2 weeks after the fact!). And if that wasn't enough, the Destinations manager told us to de-book a shore excursion that required a 15 min walk to the tour boat because my husband needed a little extra time to walk the distance. No accommodation from them at all. I told them we would just work it out. In Nova Scotia, I went and talked to the local tour people on the dock and they were very kind and helped my husband get an early start on the walk to the tour boat. Thank God for the friendly and welcoming Canadians! We enjoyed the boat tour a lot but met another lady who had the same experience as we did, and her husband didn't take the tour. She kept saying he would have really enjoyed it if only the Destinations dept was more accommodating and kind. By the way, we were surprised when people in wheel chairs and people with crutches were on our tour! When we got off the ship in New York, our assigned bus driver did not know which airlines were at which terminals at La Guardia. Regent agents had to be called to get the info. Then when we got to the airport (which was torn up under construction), the driver could not find the way to the terminal that the majority of the passengers needed. After two trips around the airport, a man got on and told us we would all have to get off and take a shuttle bus to our terminal and we would have to "lug" our luggage with us! Needless to say, no one was happy and some of the passengers vehemently told the driver to "Find our Terminal" or get us a taxi! A policeman finally came and directed the driver to our terminal. So as you can see, just about everything the Destinations team organized was a disaster for us! Because of all the trouble we had with the Destinations team, we did not book another cruise on Regent as we had planned to do during the voyage. Their rudeness and lack of customer service and lousy organization really turned us off. Also we felt that the ship's staff really catered to returning passengers and the 12 of us who were on Regent for the first time were not a priority. We did like the all inclusiveness of the cruise so we will look for another cruise line (maybe Viking), who will hopefully have a Destinations Team that will be more organized, accommodating and friendly. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose the cruise because of our prior excellent experience on Regent, including the Navigator and because of the interesting, 20 day itinerary. Exploring 10 ports in Norway was eye-opening, getting to know the culture some, the ... Read More
We chose the cruise because of our prior excellent experience on Regent, including the Navigator and because of the interesting, 20 day itinerary. Exploring 10 ports in Norway was eye-opening, getting to know the culture some, the immaculateness everywhere, the Norwegian friendliness and their commitment to the environment. Murmansk, Russia was a forgettable industrial, gray, crumbling city. Two other Russian ports had to be omitted because of approaching storms and Regent did an excellent job explaining why this decision was made and happily substituted 3 additional Norwegian ports. The U.K ports were well chosen and interesting. Embarkation was perfectly and efficiently handled. Regent's pre-night hotel in London, the Langham, was a first rate luxury hotel One negative was the severe rumbling at times in the ship's theater during shows. It interrupted the speakers and performers and set the glasses rattling. Apparently this has been an issue in the past, but the design of this 20 year old ship prevents a fix. Another negative was the difference in window size (30% less) of deluxe suites which are priced the same with the ones with the larger windows located on one deck above (!). No one at Regent could seem to answer why. The cabins and public spaces, recently refurbished, were very nice and comfortable. The dining experience got a bit old...but perhaps that's a function of the length of the cruise (20 days). The service was superb and having sailed Regent twice before, there seemed to be an increasing number of crew addressing guests by name---a nice touch. All in all, a very nice experience. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Recently completed a 7 day Alaske cruise on Regent's Seven Seas Mariner. My wife and I had planned this trip for several years and finally decided to travel this past July (2019). We chose Regent at the suggestion of our Agent. On ... Read More
Recently completed a 7 day Alaske cruise on Regent's Seven Seas Mariner. My wife and I had planned this trip for several years and finally decided to travel this past July (2019). We chose Regent at the suggestion of our Agent. On receipt of their sales brochure we "poured" over the information and decided it was time to "treat" ourselves to a high end cruise. We purchase the cruise for $17,000.00 dollars for a balcony room on the 9th level. NOT A SUITE. We have cruised many times in the past with our children and our friends. We have booked on Royal Caribbean and Carnival ships with travel throughout the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas. What sold us on the Regent cruise was the "promise" of a "top of the line" all inclusive experience. Boy were we disappointed. As I will enumerate below. 1) The embarkation process in Vancouver was rudimentary at best. We arrived with plenty of time to spare and recieved our documents in a timely fashion. After a very long walk with carry on luggage we boarded the ship to a glass of sparkling wine. 2). Our room was ready to occupy. It was clean with a bowl of "aging" fruit available for consumption. The small refridgerator was stocked with 4 cans of soda pop and one water. I asked the room attendant about wine and spirits availablity (which we thought would in the refridgerator) and was told that individual servings were available through "room service". Who wants to wait 45 minutes for a glass of wine? My wife odered a bottle of wine (California Chardonnay). 25 bucks at Costco and was charge $60.00 on the cruise. Premium Wine and Spirits were to be included onboard as part of the "package". At the lounges we were offerd mixed drinks....mostly of a lower quality range of spirits. You had to request "top shelf" spirits. I'm not a big drinker but for $17,000.00 bucks I would expect top quality. 3) We met our room steward ONCE during the cruise. Never once were we asked if anything additional was needed to improve our cruise experience....BY ANYBODY.... Our friends who stayed down the hall had money stolen from a wallet during the day, they spoke to Guest Relations and recieved an inadequate response. Lesson learned.... lock your stuff in the safe. 3). The ship was in "good condition" and the maintenence crew kept it clean. It was quite clear that the Cruise Ship Operators" poured a great deal of their resources to its upkeep. 4) The entertainment was ok. Some good, some not so good. The Cruise director "Andy" was slightly overbearing constantly trying to "shill" the products both on the ship and at each port. I overheard several guests stating that the shops at the ports paid for this service. If I want to buy something I really don't need a strangers input. 5) There were plenty of "shore excursions" available at no charge, but.....If you wanted to partcipate in "upscale" excursions there was a charge We purchased 4 days of excursions for 2 people at a additional cost of $1900.00. Getting near $20 grand now. 6) The FOOD. Very disappointed. We were ALLOWED to dine at the upscale restaraunt only once during our cruise. We were told at the main reservation desk on deck 5 to inquire daily about cancellations then were told there that we needed to go to the individual resaurants and inquire. How embarassing, that we receievd poor treatment from ALL the maitre d's at the specialty restaurants. We dined a Prime 7 and had a wonderful dinner the crab legs served were what you expect from Alaska. Other than that evening the food and the service was subpar in the main dining room. My wife order lobster one evening and got somthing that resembled several large shrimp. I had Dover sole and had to remove pinbones fron the filets. Being that we were on an Alaskan cruise I would assume that Shrimp, Salmon and Crab Legs would be highlighted. Not on this cruise. The shrimp cocktails contained shrimp that were meally/old and the crab legs when available in the main dining room were that of "Red Lobster" quality. 7) Disembarkation. Now here is where Regent gets 2 stars. Smooth transition. I thought that this process was the only thing that Regent did properly. Probably to get the passengers off the ship and get the next "goats" onboard. All in all, quite a disappointing experience for what was billed as the cruise of a lifetime. Never again with Regent! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Went on Baltic cruise on 22 July 2019. We started at Copenhagen and finished in Stockholm, visiting Rostock, Tallinn, St Petersburg, Helsinki. We have sailed with regent before and with Seabourn. I must say this was our best ever cruise to ... Read More
Went on Baltic cruise on 22 July 2019. We started at Copenhagen and finished in Stockholm, visiting Rostock, Tallinn, St Petersburg, Helsinki. We have sailed with regent before and with Seabourn. I must say this was our best ever cruise to date. The ship is beautiful with lots of space, well laid out and felt very luxurious. We eat at all of the speciality restaurants which included the Pacific Rim which was not on the Voyager. All were excellent but we felt the Pacific Rim was the beast. It was it was a shame the cruise was only 1 week long and only had one see day to enjoy the ship properly. All of the staff seemed genuinely happy and were easy to engage and chat with. The service was also excellent. We only once had to be seated for dinner as we wanted a window seat at the Sette Mari (Italian) Restaurant. The head waiter suggested to go to the pool bar, have a drink and he would let us know when the table was ready. After about 20 minutes he personally came and collected us and showed us to our window table We went to 4 of the shows and all were excellent. All of the singers and dancers could have been on a West End show. We had a mixture of free tours, small group tours and in St Petersburg we went for the Classic Tour and paid the extra $120 dollars each which included a meal in an excellent roof top restaurant. Great cruise which was helped with come exceptional weather for the Baltic. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Family vacation with our two teen sons. Firstly we booked a 15 night cruise with Regent at no time did they tell us that the cruise was two bolted together. Beware this seems perfectly normal and somewhat shady. The net effect is that ... Read More
Family vacation with our two teen sons. Firstly we booked a 15 night cruise with Regent at no time did they tell us that the cruise was two bolted together. Beware this seems perfectly normal and somewhat shady. The net effect is that entertainment and menus repeat for both weeks... I think this is very unfair and should be addressed and I would advise people to check prior to booking unless you dont mind having a mirror image of the first part of the cruise in your second week. Ship: First time on Seven Seas and was bursting with excitement. I found the ship to be boring to be honest lacking the distinction and a personality I was expecting from Regent. Everything seems underwhelming not pretty and basic fit out Cabin: Best part of the ship nicely appointed decent size room and bathroom, balcony was a bit cramped to move around on but useable. Bed was very comfy. Staff: Very mixed firstly on the pool deck their never seemed enough of them but given the drinks were included one cant help but think this was deliberate. As a result the staff at the pool bar were unwelcoming and stressed certainly no service. The staff in the buffet were mixed in respect to attitude, one felt that the training was lacking with a number of staff many seeming distant and uninterested. The supervisor in Prime 7 was damn right rude I think he felt he owned the place! Prime 7 was okay but we didn't have a compulsion to go back. I have dined in far better on more traditional steak restaurants on cruise ships Prime 7 was average at best. Shore excursions: well a mixed bag supposedly all inclusive despite anything decent being charged for. The chargeable ones were good albeit out trip to the Ferrari museum 1.5 hour drive each way ended up leaving us just 45 mins to get round before being hearded back onto the bus. In the event they refunded just $30. Sums up Regent in my opinion...Cheap! I have been on Silverseas and Seaborne and have seen reviews that Regent are better. In my opinion they are in a different class. Both the aforementioned are far beyond Regent in every way for example both offer cold towels round the pool Regent does not, both offer fresh fruit kebabs at the pool Regent does not. Both offer deck dining quality at night Regent offers burgers. All very low end with high end pricing. In the end its everyone's choice but for me this was an excellent itinerary and we as a family had the trip of a lifetime, Regent had every opportunity to win our business in the future and simply failed to achieve the high standard they advertise themselves to be. We wont be back!! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Wanted to try a high end cruise to see if Regent was better than my other cruises -- in a word, Regent is far below their competitors. In the past six years I did an Alaska cruise on Celebrity. I had an aft cabin and we had our own ... Read More
Wanted to try a high end cruise to see if Regent was better than my other cruises -- in a word, Regent is far below their competitors. In the past six years I did an Alaska cruise on Celebrity. I had an aft cabin and we had our own restaurant (Blu). All meals were ala carte, served fresh, hot and delicious. The price, as I recall for a 9-night cruise (instead of the 11 on this sailing) was about a third of Regent's price. Then I did two European river cruises on Avalon. Of course there is a much smaller number of guests on a river cruise, but every meal had a half dozen of ala carte meals, paired with very good wine. This brings us to our Regent Mariner experience. First of all, the pros. The ship was exceptionally clean, the staff was very friendly, the cabin was nice, unless you sleep on the left side of the bed like I did. If you get up to use the loo in the middle of the night, always remember that there is a wall facing you about 10 inches from your bed! There is a great Coffee Connection place where they served liquored coffee drinks and snacks, enjoyed that immensely. Now, one of the main things you go on a cruise for is good food, right? Overall, the restaurants were a major disappointment. The two "specialty" restaurants, Prime 7 and Chartreuse, were only made available one time during an 11-day cruise. Big mistake by Regent. We did eat there twice after going to see the concierge but they make you wait until 8:30, much later than we like to dine. Prime 7 was a disappointment. I had their signature dish, the surf and turf. I don't know if the beef was supposed to be prime or not, but it was just OK, certainly not memorable. The lobster was gummy and tasteless. My wife had the Alaskan king crab legs. The portion was generous but the crab was served absolutely lukewarm and had no flavoring at all. When I make crab, I use Zatarain spices so that the seafood has some flavor. Regent's food seemed like they deliberately cook everything to be bland. Of course their customers are mostly old, and it's like they want to avoid upset stomachs. By far one of the MAIN complaints about this cruise was the wine selection that was offered. That night they were serving "Josh" cabernet, which anyone can buy for about $8-$10. For what I paid for this cruise I was expecting $40-$50 type wine. For cocktails, Regent's bars were stocked with high end spirits, but they went EXTREMELY cheap on wine. Given their profit margin on their cruises this was a total disgrace. They claimed that the chef used this "pairing" to complement the food. The only thing that this wine could complement is a cold baloney sandwich. I use better wine than Josh (and the white equivalent they served that night) when I make my homemade spaghetti sauce. I made the waiter get me a French red (medium body) that was only slightly better. Another area where Regent goes wrong is the total lack of ambience is the two specialty restaurants. They are very sterile, and look like a chopped off half ballroom at a Marriott in Tulsa, OK. (Sorry, Tulsa). They have a very good piano player (Nick) who is playing to a mostly empty room on the way to the restaurants. Why don't they pipe in the music to the restaurants? I felt like I was eating at a nursing home, no atmosphere at all and mediocre food. At Chartreuse, the experience was better, the food was prepared better but again the wine selection was less than stellar. We had a great waitress (Zenife --she said call her Jennifer). She had a great personality and was the most outstanding waitperson we had on the cruise. Throughout this cruise, the food was often served lukewarm, and it was this night as well. I never had a hot meal the entire 11 nights, that is simply terrible. Their kitchen to customer wait time is simply too long. There were many times when I saw my food sitting on the service table, getting cold, before the waiter or waitress could get back to the station to serve the dinner. The servers were running around like crazy, so the problem was not them. Management need to put more people in the food preparation/serving process. I hate cold or lukewarm food, and that's all I got. I tried the Italian restaurant one night --this is the buffet converted to and Italian themed restaurant at night. You still have to get your own salad and dessert. The food here was blah and I never went back. That left a LOT of nights dining at the Compass Rose restaurant. The service in this place was wildly inconsistent. Sometimes you would get an attentive, personable waiter who seemed to care about your dinner. Other times not so much. This is an example -- we both ordered coffee after dinner. The waiter brought out TWO bowls of sugar, but no cups or coffee. Ten minutes went by -- I clocked it --- then he brought two cups and saucers. Again, no coffee. Another 10 minutes -- I clocked it-- he finally brought coffee. He apologized and said that the coffee just finished brewing. 20 minutes to get a cup of coffee --- really??? One night in the Compass Rose I had lamb chops with simple mint jelly. The food was again lukewarm and tasteless. When I make lamb at home I used onion and garlic powder, olive oil, and other seasonings. Again, nursing home food. I had a side of Lyonnaise potatoes. This was brought out after the entree and the potatoes were ICE COLD, not even the lukewarm I was used to. Other meals I ate were better (dover sole was tasty). I received a mid-cruise comment card and I shared the opinions I've laid out here. I received calls from several chefs and I explained the complaint about the blandness and temperature of the food. They tripped over themselves apologizing but things never improved. The best thing about Compass Rose was that they made fresh souflees at night. Finally something warm and usually delicious. Went there every night for dessert, no matter where I ate. The Mariner desperately needs another restaurant. On at least one of their sister ships they have a Pan-Asian restaurant. They just renovated the Mariner about a year and a half ago and why they didn't put another restaurant in, I'll never know. The worst thing is that they are going to use the Mariner for a half-year sailing next year. If you made me eat the food I had for that long, I would go insane. I am somewhat of a foodie, and this was the worst overall food experience I've ever had on a cruise. Add the terrible wine, and I felt that the value of this cruise was horribly, negatively skewed. Entertainment --- Sort of typical. They had a 12 person group of singers or dancers, backed by a house band. The band was good, and after they show they played at the Horizon lounge. Good listening and dancing music. The 12 person group was so-so... lots of energy but short on talent. A dark haired woman could really sing, but the rest were just ok. The first night they did a tribute to the Rat Pack, which is my kind of music. They just didn't have the voices or talent to pull it off. One of the lead male singers was singing the famous Sinatra song "One for my Baby". I literally could hear Frank turning over in his grave (just kidding, I think). There was a good female entertainer who did 2 shows and a comedian was pretty good. The rest was blah. The cruise seemed to be sort of disorganized in some spots. On the day we went to the glacier, it was midday. Everyone was out to look at the glacier and the viewing ended at about 2 p.m. when most restaurants (Compass Rose) closed, except for the buffet. Everyone went up there and unfortunately they ran out of food. It took 45 minutes to get a hamburger made. On that day, why not keep the other restaurants open later. Just poor basic management. Another warning -- there is a little sitting area around where the grill is located. The smell and smoke in that enclosed area seemed toxic to me --- couldn't wait to get out of there. There are so many suggestions where sound management principles could improve the customer experience. Again, this is not a 3 day Carnival cruise. Regent should be ashamed. Better yet, hire me as a management consultant! By far the biggest complaint I have (besides everything mentioned here) is their utter disregard for their customers in it's refund policy on unused shipboard credits. The main reason I went on this cruise was to go on the glacier hike. I had a total on $1400 in shipboard credits. Apparently $1000 was "nonrefundable" credit and the rest was cash. The glacier hike was $806 for both go us. We get to the pier and they tell us that the tour was canceled due to poor visibility. I was totally bummed but understand that they can't control the weather. I called reception and was told that I had to use the non-refundable credits onboard. We had a slip in the room that said we had these credits and that the could be used "for cash advances or casino credits". I tried to get them to refund the money back to my credit card and they said it had to be spent on the ship. Furthermore they would NOT let us use it in the casino, despite what their card indicated. I was absolutely livid. It was too late in the trip to use it for any other decent paid exclusion. We wound up spending almost $700 for a cheap watch and some wildly overpriced costume jewelry. My wife asked of the earrings were silver, and was told they were. She is allergic to any other metal. They apparently were made of some other cheap alloy, and now she can't wear them. Another lie from Regent. They should have willingly paid back the unused credit in cash, as their own card states. Terrible management. As I said in the beginning my expectations were very high due to the high price I paid for this cruise. Regent simply did not deliver and if you are reading this before you book, just don't spend the extra money to travel on this cruise line. It isn't worth it. They have lost a customer for life. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We selected Regent because we have friends who highly recommended Regent as the best in the business. We were a party of 9 on this cruise to Alaska. 1 Grand Suite, 3 Penthouse Suites, and 1 Concierge Suite. The cabins were very nice ... Read More
We selected Regent because we have friends who highly recommended Regent as the best in the business. We were a party of 9 on this cruise to Alaska. 1 Grand Suite, 3 Penthouse Suites, and 1 Concierge Suite. The cabins were very nice although the Grand Suite had A/C problems from the start and took repair on several occasions. This should have been repaired prior to boarding. All other staterooms were in good condition except for a bathroom door that needed repair. Lets talk about water. Yes water. Regent has decided to process their own bottled water with little information as to where the water is coming from other than to say they have a new filtration system. We preferred Evian water which they had but it was like pulling teeth to make sure it would be available. Many times we would wait 5 to 10 minutes for our waiter to locate and provide us our request which is unacceptable. Also our Butler made it clear that it was not readily available. Really, on a 6 star ship Evian is not available. Somehow throughout the cruise we were accommodated. They are pushing their new water claiming that it is more ecological for the environment. I guess Regent no longer recycles? Lets talk about the food. We have been on several other cruise lines some with the same rating as Regent and others with 5.5 Stars and their food is much superior to Regents. We dinned in the Steak house that apparently serves USDA Prime Beef. Trust me this is not Prime Beef unless the new definition is bring a chain saw with you to dinner. The veal is also very tough. There is no question in our minds that NCL is using their standard beef selection from their other lines on Regent. We dined their several times and the beef just does not add up to choice much less Prime. The main dinning room was just ok and most of the food is pre prepared, and when served shows dried out edges on the food, in some cases food was served cold. Breakfast, lacks any special flair and the pancakes on one day were literally inedible and the bacon was full of grease and clumped together. Typical cafeteria style food. Does this sound like a "6" star ship ? Lunch, was ok but again nothing special like other 5.5 and 6 star ships. They also had a grill outside near the pool that had no ventilation and you could eat their but then you needed to wash your clothes and take a shower as you smelled like you had been working as a short order cook. This is not an exaggeration by any means. With the cabin categories we had for the 9 people and Butler service you would think making dinner reservations would be easy. Think again. The ship is well maintained overall and pleasant. The captain did a 5 minute viewing of Hubbard Glacier as he did not plan ahead for the bad (fog) weather and their was a ship right behind ours that was on schedule for their viewing of the glacier. One of the main reasons for the cruise is the Glacier but somehow the Captain missed the memo. We cannot say this was a bad cruise but neither can we say it was a great cruise and by no means a "6" Star cruise. This is the problem when great cruise lines get bought up by larger more generic cruise lines. They try and integrate less with more and end up average. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I chose this cruise because of its itinerary. This was my first time on Regent. I usually do Princess. If you want to try Regent, start with another ship. The Navigator is old, small, has very little entertainment during the night or ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of its itinerary. This was my first time on Regent. I usually do Princess. If you want to try Regent, start with another ship. The Navigator is old, small, has very little entertainment during the night or day and the decor is average at best. One of my biggest problem with this cruise line is their costs to book your hotel and airport transfers. They pay for your first night before the cruise, but obviously it has been figured into the cost already. If you want to stay additional nights, I strongly suggest that you book it yourself. They charged $419 per person for the additional night. Our room only cost about $300 a night for double occupancy. So by booking with Regent, I paid over twice as much for that second night. I had my daughter with me on this trip and even though she was staying in our suite during the cruise, I had asked for an additional room for her before cruise. They put her in our room on the sofa bed and charged an additional $769 to do so. So now this extra night has cost me $1,607. Apparently, a third person in a suite does not get a free room the night before. I was encouraged by Regent agent to book the room through them because they could not guarantee both nights would be in the same room if I did not. I ended up paying for my daughter to have her own hotel room for both nights and Regent would not refund me the $769 because it was not done 30 days prior. I did not realize there was only one hotel room until I arrived in Dublin. Long story short - I would have saved a lot of money if I had personally just booked two rooms for two nights and skipped on their "free" one night of hotel. The airport transfers are no better. They have a private driver pick you up at airport which is very nice but they forgot to notice that my daughter was on a different flight and then never picked her up. She took a cab for $56. Regent charged us $113 times 3 for airport transfers. It did include a ride on a bus from the hotel to ship but still very pricey. The positive things about this cruise were the staff and the food. Everyone that assisted us on the ship were top notch. The food was the best I have had on a cruise ship. Their one specialty restaurant was excellent but we could only get one night's reservation on a 12 night cruise. All alcohol is included with your cruise and they serve excellent choices of liquor, wine and beer. The downside is people can over drink when it is basically free. The excursions were also included and they were satisfactory. We ended up paying for premium tours 3 times but there are plenty of free ones. Be sure and book those early on and do not wait till right before the ship departs. The good tours fill up fast. Read Less
26 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise and ship because we had been on the same ship with a different itinerary less than 2 years ago. We even chose the same room. We were told that the ship had been refurbished. Not so, at least in our cabin. So many ... Read More
We chose this cruise and ship because we had been on the same ship with a different itinerary less than 2 years ago. We even chose the same room. We were told that the ship had been refurbished. Not so, at least in our cabin. So many things were wrong that it is hard to know where to begin. We boarded the ship at 2PM and didn't get our luggage until 5:30PM. The staff was all flustered. Something was off with the staff the whole voyage. Our cabin had stains on the carpet, rust on the balcony and lots of mold. The service at the restaurants was awful. The staff was inattentive and didn't clear tables, so we all ended up waiting or sitting at dirty tables. We had lots of trouble with our reservations at the specialty restaurants. The food was decent, but not terrific. Even on the first night, when the staff was introduced, they were not "on." Something felt off the whole voyage. We were supposed to leave Ketchikan at 4PM and didn't leave until 4am, so we missed all of our excursions and one whole day in port. That left us at sea for 3 out of 6 days. We got little in the way of an explanation and were each offered a voucher for $750 good on another cruise. Who would want to take another Regent cruise after this one...Viking is so much better and we are very avid high end travelers... Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Touted as the best experience in cruising. Extremely disappointed doesn't even describe our experience. Had the best cabin on the ship (Master Suite) for a $60,000 experience of a lifetime on the Seven Seas Mariner for the late June ... Read More
Touted as the best experience in cruising. Extremely disappointed doesn't even describe our experience. Had the best cabin on the ship (Master Suite) for a $60,000 experience of a lifetime on the Seven Seas Mariner for the late June 2019 cruise departure. We booked the cruise about 18 months in advance to have the selection of cabin and itinerary that best fit our schedule. Unfortunately, 2 days of the 8 ruined by engine failure and weather with very poor communication from the Captain and Cruise Director for explanations of the issues and a 12-hour delay in Ketchikan that forced us to miss the port of Juneau (where most of the best excursions were planned). Food and specialty restaurants a joke with respect to quality or food selection. Inedible pancakes delivered to our stateroom that could serve as hockey pucks or an entire day's salt intake. If you like waiting for service and having your meals delivered cold and late, you can dine in the specialty restaurants (but only once or twice if you are traveling with other family members not in the Master Suite). The Italian restaurant and main dining room had incredibly variable service and menu choices that did not vary much over the entire sailing. We have sailed on over 30 cruises with other lines and really loved Oceania (3 prior Owner's Suite sailings). We were told by everyone from the travel agent to the butler that we would have a great time and that the Alaska cruise would be memorable. Offered a meager $750 credit on a future tour. Gave comments mid-cruise that were not addressed and Regent's Customer Service extremely rude and unapologetic for the voyage. The company's marketing of the cruises is superb, but the execution of the logistics and services was the worst I have ever experienced. There are many other superior cruise lines that are happy to have the bookings. The Alaska itinerary was the standard northbound passage from Vancouver. The pre-cruise hotel was very good, but transfers were disorganized. Embarkation was promising when they poured a glass of champagne and had a steward lead us to elevator (who subsequently pushed the floor button on the elevator, dropped our bags, and exited the elevator). This was only the first comedic event of many notable missteps during the cruise. Our Master Suite was listed to be ready at noon. About 10 minutes after we arrived, about 40 travel agents and staff came in to the room and started touring the cabin while we were out on the front balcony-no apologies or explanations from the cruise management. No butler introduced himself for about 2 hours and the on-board phone system was not working in port. We were happy to come back home and see more whales off the coast of Boston than we saw during the entire Alaska sailing! Eventually got a reply from the Customer Service office with really no admission that sailing was sub-par or that Regent needed to improve anything with respect to service, dining, or accommodations. Clearly, they don't understand that customer service is everything and their reputation will suffer especially when touting their cruises as unique luxury experiences at a very expensive price. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
North to Alaska! A review of our recent voyage on the Regent Seven Seas Mariner from Vancouver BC, Canada to Seward Alaska Alaskans are justifiably proud of their state! And, as we found out…. in Alaska size really does matter (as ... Read More
North to Alaska! A review of our recent voyage on the Regent Seven Seas Mariner from Vancouver BC, Canada to Seward Alaska Alaskans are justifiably proud of their state! And, as we found out…. in Alaska size really does matter (as we were reminded constantly!). Alaska is BIG! So big they consider Texas "Cute" :-) So BIG that if the outline of Alaska is superimposed on the outline of the "Lower Forty-Eight” It stretches from COAST-TO-COAST! BTW... most of the t-shirts appear to be somewhat of an exaggeration :-).... I'm just sayin' Alaska! It's also stunningly beautiful and awe inspiring on many levels and in its big BIG way! Overview and Why My wife said “it’s time to visit Alaska” and I agreed. We looked at the various options and decided a cruise would be just the thing to give us the opportunity to experience a wider sampling of what Alaska had to offer… in a pampered sort of way of course! We looked over the different cruise offerings and decided to try Regent Seven Seas despite the much higher price tag attached. We reasoned there were some perks offered that would somewhat offset the higher costs. 1. It is an “All Inclusive” cruise line so alcoholic beverages are included. Not that my wife is a big drinker (she’s not :-) but I have been known to tipple a bit. 2. A gourmet food experience that Regent advertises as “Exquisite Cuisine” 3. All balcony suites on the ship (SS Mariner) 4. And the real equalizer… A very good selection of included shore excursions. The only excursions that sported an additional cost were usually the helicopter and seaplane sort of excursions and a few of the all day things. I thought to myself “we could make up the difference in cost by taking advantage of this”. 5. Regents reviews and reputation as a first class, luxury cruise line. Note: I should have dug deeper! As we discovered some of the above is true and some not so much. Purchase Experience The purchase experience couldn’t have been easier. After choosing the cruise I simply called Regent and spoke to one of their representatives. He was helpful and guided us through the process smoothly. One thing to note is that Regent supplies airfare and all transfers as a normal perk of your cruise package. You can save some money by doing it yourself of course but then you have to take care of all airport/hotel transfers yourself. In the case of the Seward to Anchorage transfer (2.5 hours) that could be up to five hundred dollars! If you book one of their cruises and are flying intercontinental the covered airfare is Business/First Class. Since ours was not an intercontinental flight it was cattle car class. But, since the flights were direct to Vancouver and a direct return from Anchorage it was all good… On the surface this looked like a great cruise. It was rather shorter than many of the other itineraries (only 7 nights) on Regent or the other cruise lines. That was good for us as this was sort of a last minute decision (at least for us) and was only booked three months prior to departure. Looking at the cabins we a booked a “Concierge Suite” and were "treated" to an extra day in Vancouver at the Four Seasons Hotel. I liked this idea, not because of the extra day in Vancouver, but because we arrived a day ahead of the cruise to minimize any possibility of a travel snafu. Pre-Cruise - Pick up at the airport went well. Regent was well represented and greeted us as we exited customs. Transfer to the hotel was in a nice van with five other passengers. We were dropped off at the Four Seasons the rest of them went on to the Trump Towers. Luggage was handled appropriately while we checked in at the front desk. The hotel clerk immediately tried to up-sell us to a suite. If I understood her correctly it was “only” $950 for the night. After a split second I was able to choke out… “No thank you…” I told her… “we will be fine for the one night in the room booked by Regent.” The Four Seasons itself was nice but somewhat tired.... definitely showing its age. The neighborhood was fine and great for walking. After taking a walk we looked at the hotel food offerings and opted to go outside. At the recommendation of one the hotel bell staff we tried the Cactus Club Restaurant just down the street. It was great! A great choice whenever in Vancouver! Regent supplied a good breakfast through the hotel the next morning and at 11:45 we were bused to the Ship. Embarkation - started smoothly. We had to once more go through customs only this time it was US customs as our destination was, of course, Alaska. We had one heart stopping moment as one of the Canadian customs agents announced we needed to have our “TICKETS” in hand. “TICKETS??!!?? I don’t know anything about stinking TICKETS!” I started canvasing our neighbors in line to find while most had a printout of their “ticket” many did not. I snagged the first official looking (uniformed) person I could find and asked the question….”Do we REALLY NEED a ticket?” Thankfully the answer was “No, just show your passport and state what ship you will be boarding…” Whew! First bullet dodged. Heart Stopping moment #2 We wended our way through customs (Thank you sir, enjoy your trip!) and made our way through the Regent line to the check-in counter. They had eight or ten positions open and were smoothly processing passengers until, of course, I step up and hand them our passports. We took pictures in turn and then the agent went to find our ship passes and keycards and came back empty handed. While the agent approached us still clearly standing there in line another passenger pushed passed me and my wife and laid her documents on the counter glaring at the gate agent. I paused just a second and politely (kind of) said “excuse me… I don’t believe we are quite finished here.” She looked at me like I had a bug on my nose… for a moment I didn’t think she was going to yield but she did sort of huffing and puffing and with a bit of blustering and posturing…. Turning back to the gate agent I noted she appeared somewhat flustered as she told me it would be just a moment before calling a floor supervisor over. I glanced back to see “Pushy Lady” visibly fuming at the delay. Smiling inwardly I turned back to the agent now joined by a supervisor. I heard snippets of their conversation and understood her to say she couldn’t find our reservations in the system or our keycards in the pile. The supervisor calmly typed for a moment and pointed something out to the agent, left and came back with our documents a moment later while the agent stood frozen smile on her face. All was well and we boarded the ship leaving the dazed gate agent and “Pushy Lady” behind. We boarded the ship thinking to go directly to our room and drop off our carry-on stuff. Well that was the plan but we discovered that our boarding time was considered “early” and nothing was ready. In fact they later made a ship-wide page to the effect the rooms were off limits until announced. That could have been made clear upfront but it was not. A simple note via eMail or being told that at check-in would have been sufficient but neither effort was made to the best of my knowledge. A kind of ship-wide announcement in a semi-scolding tone was made but probably was not the best way to make that known. In any event we were able to tour the public areas of the ship and have a nice lunch at the Pool Grill. Initial Impressions Initial impressions of the Mariner were very favorable. As we moved about the public areas of the ship we were struck by the cleanliness and overall well maintained look of the vessel. The lounges, the restaurant areas, the seating areas and other public areas were clean, comfortable and inviting. Public toilets were spotless. The Pool Grill and Pool Deck was a great place to chill out while waiting for our room to become available. Food was sampled and found to be of good quality served buffet style. The Mariner is one of the oldest ships in the Regent fleet but has aged gracefully and appeared to be in great condition and more than serviceable. When we were finally able to enter our cabin it was a pleasant surprise. A very spacious “shotgun suite” awaited us. The suite contains a sleeping area that can be separated from the seating area by a heavy drape. The seating area has a, more or less, full size couch (actually more “Love Seat” size), small table, 55” flat screen TV atop drawer/vanity area, bar essentials (glasses and corkscrew) and a mini fridge stocked with beer and soft drinks. You also have the option to customize the stocking of the mini-fridge by contacting your room steward. Fresh fruit along with a bottle of Champagne were waiting for us. Neither of us are much in the way of champagne drinkers so it eventually went back into the fridge to be passed along to the next customer or, hopefully, a crew party. The WALK-IN CLOSET had a generous supply of hangers with ample room for clothes and a nice row of drawers for storage. The closet also has a safe and the Life Vests. The bathroom is large with a very reasonably sized shower equipped with both rain shower and hand held shower heads. Each suite has its own balcony… excuse me…. Veranda…. that was generous in size with two wicker chairs and a small table and topped with Teak decking. All in all a SWEET Suite! Tipping Mariner is a “No Gratuity” ship. “Gratuities are neither expected or required” as it was stated. That is certainly the case and never was there a hint from any of the crew that they were fishing for a tip. The Hospitality Crew and the Room Service Crew was universally polite and attentive and I could fault none of them. I enjoyed several conversations with several of the service staff. The majority seemed to be from the Philippines with several other Asian nations represented. There were also many others from Eastern Europe and Russia. The officers and administrative crew again represented several nations with our Captain from Italy, the Cruise Director from the US, and the rest from all points in-between. While our service crew and operational crew seemed to really be engaged in their jobs, our administrational and entertainment directors really just seemed to be “phoning it in” and were somewhat disconnected and appeared somewhat distracted. Entertainment - was a mixed bag. There were several entertainment venues on the ship. Most of the lounges, including the Observation Lounge, Mariner Lounge and Horizon Lounge had grand pianos or even a full stage that were in turn manned by a pianist, a duo (guitarist and a singer), single guitarist, or a full band. There was also the late night Stars Lounge that featured either Denis and Elina (Guitar and Vocalist), Karaoke or a jukebox request sort of thing. The Constellation Theater was the venue for the Broadway style Mariner Production Cast singers and dancers with the Mariner Orchestra (6 piece), the Featured Entertainers and the occasional movie. Throughout the voyage we took in several shows and found them to range from very good to just OK. Since Broadway shows aren’t our thing we really did not attend too much of the Mariner Cast Productions. What we did see was fun and good but did not strike me as stellar. The band was always good and the singers/dancers good but a bit variable. The “Headliner” this trip was Matilda with Patrick Murray. Billed as "Jamaica's Number One Comedienne" Matilda is a ventriloquist's dummy and the alter ego of Patrick Murray. Together a charming and funny duo! Overall the entertainment seemed slightly sub-par for a uber-luxury, and expensive, cruise line experience. The voyage itself was a relatively short itinerary. That was what we were looking for as we have much longer cruise coming up in August so thought this shorter cruise would be ideal… as it turned out, it wasn’t the best choice we could have made. Our published itinerary; June 25th – One night extension in Vancouver, Canada June 26th – Embarkation – Vancouver, Canada June 27th – Cruising the Inside Passage June 28th – Ketchikan, Alaska June 29th – Juneau, Alaska June 30th – Skagway, Alaska July 1st – Sitka, Alaska July 2nd - Cruising the Hubbard Glacier July 3rd - Seward, Alaska – Debarkation This looked like the ideal short-form itinerary but it wasn’t to be. What it ended up looking like was this; June 25th – One night extension in Vancouver, Canada June 26th – Embarkation – Vancouver, Canada June 27th – Cruising the Inside Passage June 28th – Ketchikan, Alaska June 29th – CANCELLED - Juneau, Alaska Just another lovely day “Cruising the Inside Passage” June 30th – Skagway, Alaska July 1st – Sitka, Alaska July 2nd - CANCELLED - Cruising the Hubbard Glacier Just another lovely day “At Sea” July 3rd - Seward, Alaska – Debarkation A little about about the TWO MAJOR stops on the itinerary were missed for different reasons. On the second day of the cruise one of the starter engines for one of the main engines failed stranding us overnight in Ketchikan Alaska. That might have been marginally OK if they had let us off the boat to go explore Ketchikan (again) at night... but no, that didn't happen. Instead they kept quiet about the issue even though everyone could see that the departure time had come and gone. A 4:30 pm departure had slipped to 4:30 AM with no information forthcoming from the Captain or the Cruise director. And, even as we got started, it was easy to see the ship was not running on both main engines and was just limping along! The constant TV presence of our Cruise Director, Andy, still extolling the wonderful sights we were about to see in Juneau suddenly shut off without a word leaving only a blank screen. Finally mid-morning there was an announcement.... Cruise Director Andy informed us that due to the (and only just now announced) engine problems. we would be skipping our stop at Juneau and would have another lovely day at sea on our way to Skagway. The passengers grumbles were louder than both engines when working. I was very disappointed because Juneau would have been our first Glacier experience! In my opinion it was unconscionable, inconsiderate and childish of Regent to keep us, the passengers, in the dark for so long on the status of the mechanical problem. It also blows my mind that a mission critical part was not stored on the ship. Sometime in the early afternoon we all heard and felt the second engine start and the ship jumped back up to a brisk 15 knots. Too little too late to save our Juneau stop.... In any event... while a major stop on our voyage was canceled we were still going to go to the face of the Hubbard Glacier, one of the four largest Tidewater Glaciers on the planet, and the largest in Alaska, on the next to last day of our trip. Right!!??!! We were supposed to go in, on the last day of our sail on the SS Mariner, through Disenchantment Bay to the face of the Hubbard glacier. The Hubbard Glacier is the largest tidewater glacier in North America and is a stunning seventy-six miles long, seven miles wide and over one thousand two hundred feet deep at the foot of the glacier! At least that is what we were told. Cameras were checked and rechecked.... Parkas and foul weather gear donned and snugged up tight. The big day comes and several passengers, including myself, are up early on the top deck freezing our "you know what’s" off. As we started to round a bend in the fjord called Disenchantment Bay we were faced with a monstrous wall of dense fog still several miles ahead stretching from mountain to mountain across the bay. The Captain and the Passage Pilot made the decision not to enter the fog because of some significant icebergs floating about. A second major disappointment was about to rear its ugly head... This one weather related :-0 Whether right or wrong, or for better or worse, we were told we could still see the glacier as that bright line across the top of the fog bank!.... I, for one, would have rather NOT HEARD that little tidbit! Disappointment on Disenchantment Bay how apt is that?.... Ironic or not???!!! This second MAJOR disappointment on this short voyage was very hard to take. Really, I certainly have no issue with the safety decision that was made... just disappointed (once again). After returning to the cabin to lick and bind my wounds (metaphorically speaking of course!) I emerged and prepared for our now established daily routine..... BREAKFAST, LUNCH and DINNER! The next day was Seward and the end of the trip. This was a rather pricy disappointment… but live and learn :-) But! We liked what we saw and experienced in Alaska so much that my wife and I agreed we would return in a year or so and give a different cruise line a chance! A brief note on the rest of the stops and sights we did see. I liked Vancouver, at least what I saw of it was a beautiful city and it would certainly be worth spending some time in the city and the area… at least more than a night and part of a day to see more of the city. Chinatown maybe??? Ketchikan, Skagway and Sitka were great stopovers and with more time in port could have been fantastic! Hey wait! We had that extra time in Ketchikan that was totally wasted and inaccessable! Seward, well, nothing to say or see… Got off the ship…. Got on the bus. The Food I know that this is what some of you were waiting for so here goes…. Regent touts the food on board as; "EXQUISITE CUISINE" "Nothing can elevate travel quite like cuisine. That’s why we take so much pride in creating exquisite dining experiences that are nothing short of superb. Experience all the wonderful flavors and delightful scents of choice cuisine from around the world." (direct from the Regent website) It goes without saying that the food is one of the most important components of a cruise for many passengers. From elegant A La Carte dinning to the Grand Buffet the food is oft the star. And while, for the most part, the food at most of the Regent Mariner venues was good, sometimes VERY good, it was far from consistent. Here I’m just going to detail our experiences at the two Regent Specialty Restaurants, Chartreuse French Restaurant and Prime 7 Steak Restaurant and give you a few overall impressions about the other eating venues. Chartreuse French Restaurant That evening I had scored an early reservation (it was the best I could do) at one of the Regent Signature Restaurants, Chartreuse a French Restaurant. I was excited to try what Regent called "Modern French Cuisine". While the dining room was well appointed and comfortable the initial service, and later the food, were a disappointment. We were the first in the restaurant (right at our appointed time) and service was, for lack of a better word.... inattentive. For being the first customers (read ONLY Customers) it took a while to be noticed and seated. The sommelier was slow in visiting the lone table we were occupying . Then the sommelier immediately tried to up-sell me to a $275 bottle of wine and it took me just a moment to catch on. I did ask him what the featured wines were that evening and he recited them showing them to me on the wine list. Regent advertises as an "all-inclusive" cruise and indeed they are. Two wines were included that night, as in every night, a red and a white. But.... If I had not noticed the tiny prices following some of the selections I would have purchased a $125 to $300 bottle of wine. When I quizzed him about the menu he reluctantly confirmed that there was indeed an "upcharge" for those particular premium selections. I told the sommelier please just bring the "house red" after I was clued into the rules. He was visibly disappointed at the lack of the sale :-) I afterwards found that there may have been additional wine selections included for the asking. However, even though I had asked, no other options were offered or clarified. The waiter came to the table immediately after the sommelier vacated and told us of that evenings chef's special choices then left us to peruse the menu. He returned after an appropriate amount of time and left with our order. For appetizers my wife ordered Escargot and I ordered the seared Duck Foie Gras. Entrees were roasted lobster for her and double cut Lamb ribs for me. The Escargot were terrible. Served in a disgusting gravy of some sort they were rubbery and served removed from the shells, a good indication they were (possibly) frozen or even (GASP!) from a can. My Foie Gras was somewhat better. It was nicely displayed/presented with three little apricot dots arranged on the plate. Taste was meh... rather tasteless and bland. The entrees didn't fare any better. My wife's entree, Roasted Lobster with Scallop Mousseline, Green Asparagus and Fava Beans (no Fava Beans were visable), was displayed well but was extremely overcooked resulting in a tough, tasteless piece of unrecognizable meat. The vegetables that were there were fine and well cooked. My lamb was delivered beautifully presented and flanked by two Chickpea Fritters. However I had ordered the lamb Medium RARE. It arrived terribly overcooked and tough. As a result of this criminal treatment of what likely started as a decent piece of meat it was largely tasteless and tough. My desert, Creme Brûlée was well presented and was tasty, rich and creamy with a satisfying sweet/bitter crunch from the caramelized sugar on top while the wife's Chocolate Napoleon was inedible. Prime 7 Steakhouse Tonight was our second specialty restaurant reservation. This time at Regent's steakhouse, Prime 7. We had been by the restaurant several times on the way to the Compass Rose and it was always busy and packed. We had a late reservation at 8:30 pm on the 30th. We showed up about five minutes early and were asked to wait in the lounge area. The Maitre D' came and collected us after a short wait at 8:33.... Perfect! After being seated we were immediately approached by our waiter and the sommelier. The menu as suitable for a steakhouse, was simple and to the point featuring mostly beef offerings with a few chops, seafood and poultry choices. We made our orders and sat back with a little of the house vino. A Palate cleanser of Tomato Bisque was delivered to the table followed closely by the appetizers. The presentation on her appetizer, the Tuna Tartar was very nice and she enjoyed it. My appetizer was Foie Gras Sliders with Rhubarb Chutney. It came out looking like two tiny little hamburgers, which I thought entirely appropriate for a steak house lead-in and they were delicious. Our entrees arrived. She had ordered King Crab and I ordered a 18oz Bone-In Ribeye. Mine was delicious! This was at least a pound of steak-y delicious-ness. Billed as a Prime, Dry-Aged piece of meat, it was cooked perfectly to my ordered medium-rare temperature with a beautiful seared crust on the outside. It was all I could do not to pick up the bone and start gnawing away at the steak like a wild animal. Luckily I was able to control myself and waited until the end of the meal before waving the bone around making a fool of myself. As delicious as my steak was, my wife's King Crab was not. She certainly received a big ol' plate of Crab. But that plate was overcooked, dry and lifeless. She could finish only a small portion of the total before calling it quits. I definitely felt bad for her and told her so between mouthfuls of my perfectly done steak! Dessert was Cheesecake for me and a Berries in Creme Anglaise for her. Both were a good choice and satisfied that Dessert Jones.... We said thank you to our stellar waiter Rochcelle.... and headed out. Some brief thoughts on the other dining venues…. Compass Rose – Compass Rose is the main dining room. Comfortable and well-appointed we found food here consistently good. Everything, with few exceptions, was well prepared and generally tasty no matter what was ordered. Service was always prompt and extremely courteous. Surroundings and ambiance were open, elegant and comfortable. It is open seating and we were always able to score a table by a window. Open for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner it is always menu driven. La Veranda – Our choice on deck 11 for Breakfast and Lunch. La Veranda is buffet style serving. More elegant and more variety than the adjacent Pool Side Grille Buffet. It was consistently good. In the evening La Veranda transforms into the menu driven (only buffet in sight is a salad bar) Sette Mari At La Veranda Italian Restaurant. Sette Mari is a great alternative to the Compass Rose and other eating venues. The food is very good with a good Italian themed menu offering. The Pool Grille - was the one breakfast, lunch and dinner venue that allowed a casual dress in the evenings. The food there was served buffet style and usually had a good mix of everything from hamburgers to some simple seafood selections. Ice Cream and deserts were also featured along with a Fresh Juice Bar. For convenience it was located adjacent to the Pool Bar. NOTE: One thing that was, unfortunately, true across ALL of the RESTAURANTS is that they could not deliver a piece of fish that was not overcooked to the point of being criminal. Shrimp and Scallops on the other hand were usually delivered perfectly. Lobster and Crab… not so much. Meat temperature was better with my lamb served at Chartreuse being the major exception. My steak at Prime 7 was perfection! I also give you this as a sample excursion/meal… A Shore Excursion that featured a Crab Feast! Note that this was one of the MANY Shore Excursions that was supplied at NO ADDITIONAL CHARGE. Cruise St. George Inlet and Crab Feast We enjoyed our time in Ketchikan walking around the city before going to a Crab Feast. Before the feast we went on a bus trip and then a small boat into the St. George Inlet. we saw some Bald Eagles and pulled up a crab trap to play with some crabs (yes, I know what that sounds like :-) Heading back to the small boat dock restaurant, The George Inlet Lodge, we indulged in our feast. It was all served with a large heaping bit of wit and wisdom from Asley our Charming Young Lady (I never thought I would live long enough to use that term... But there it is!!) of a server. It was very simply, a salad, a cold beer, and a never ending pile of the best Crab I have ever eaten. If you ever find yourself eating Crab at the George Inlet Lodge and served by Asley give her a big hey from Regent 06/28/2019 :-) Debarkation was fairly well organized but had a few hiccups. Debarkation occurred through an exit on Deck 6. Luggage was tagged and picked up from the cabin the night before. We had our breakfast and then made our way to the Coffee Connection area on deck 6 to wait for the call to exit and board the buses that would take us to Anchorage. The only sore spot was the ladies toilets on deck 6 were closed for whatever reason (men's was fine). My wife had to go down one deck to get to a bathroom..... That would not have been that much of an issue but all of the other ladies-in-waiting had to do the same and almost immediately a line formed. There were of course other public bathrooms but on the higher decks and not as convenient. As the traffic became heavier in the one bathroom on deck 5 the toilet paper ran out and was not replenished. It seemed to be “a not so fond farewell....” The bus ride to Anchorage (2.5 hr) was fine but stretched to 3.5 hours because of an accident on the one highway to Anchorage. Upon arrival, because our flight was in the evening, we were taken to the Anchorage Hilton to a "Hospitality" area arranged by Regent. For the end of a supposedly "high-end" cruise the "Hospitality" area was rather weak.... It was an old, no longer used, restaurant at the top of the Hilton. It was a bit tired looking and had little in the way of amenities. No water, hours old coffee, no hot water, and only a tray with a few cookie crumbs being there. No one replenished anything during the time we were there. There were people to help us with the shuttle transfer to the airport at our designated/selected time. We went out for lunch and settled on a nearby restaurant called "The 49th State". It was a casual nice place and had cold freshly on-site brewed beer and upscale pub grub. We ordered a pizza featuring Reindeer and Elk sausage that we enjoyed very much. When in Anchorage it would be a good lunch or evening meal stop! We wandered about downtown Anchorage for another hour or so and returned to the hotel for our trip to the airport and back to “The Lower Forty-Eight”. The wrap up! The Regent cruise wasn’t a total bust. The accommodations (cabin) and the hospitality crew are first rate. The fact that out of five stops we only truly made three was more than a little disappointing. I can’t say that Regent didn’t offer an accommodation because of the issue in by-passing Juneau, they did. But, it was not enough, in my opinion. What was offered was a $750 per passenger ($1500 total) off the your NEXT CRUISE with Regent. Sorry, those of us that were on this voyage, at least in my case, were not going to sign on again. We have been home now since the 4th of July and have heard nothing from Captain, Cruise Director, Chief Engineer or Regent Corporate concerning what happened. That seems like a bad case of “don’t give a crap” at the very least. A head-in-sand attitude at best. Regent is billed as one of the world’s premiere cruise lines which is why we gave it a whirl. Reviewers rate Regent very highly… I can only speculate they were not on our cruise! Would I cruise again with Regent? No, not as it stands now. That said…. If the perfect itinerary at a decent price appeared at the perfect time… I never say never :-) Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We wanted to see Alaska & our travel agent advised us that Regent would offer us the best experience and value. Things didn’t go well at all & we feel we never got a true Alaska vacation as promised or the Regent experience! The ... Read More
We wanted to see Alaska & our travel agent advised us that Regent would offer us the best experience and value. Things didn’t go well at all & we feel we never got a true Alaska vacation as promised or the Regent experience! The ship lost an engine & we had to eliminate Juneau as a port & we had to eliminate the Hubbard glacier due to fog. We were at sea 3 of the 6 days. Not what we wanted and were only offered a $750 credit towards a FUTURE cruise to be booked within a year! In addition, restaurants were difficult to get seated in. Even the no reservation Italian restaurant had an hour and a half wait to be seated! Finding a table for 4 was virtually impossible. And to top things off, the casino manager cheated my husband out of winning a black jack tournament by verbally helping the other person in the finals! He then begged my husband to keep it inside the casino. We had 3 witnesses, reported it to executive concierge and the guest relations office has declined to offer an apology and/or give us any monetary compensation for a very bad cruise for so many reasons. Even my travel agent tried in vain to get us $1500 cash instead of future cruise credit, but they refuse to budge. What a terrible way to do business! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We just returned from our inaugural, “all inclusive,”11-night cruise with Regent Seven Seas. There were six travelers in our party. Our journey was to the British Isles on the Navigator. The trip met but did not exceed our ... Read More
We just returned from our inaugural, “all inclusive,”11-night cruise with Regent Seven Seas. There were six travelers in our party. Our journey was to the British Isles on the Navigator. The trip met but did not exceed our expectations, with a few minor and two major disappointments. Despite the few problems, we found this cruise to be enjoyable and close to a luxury experience. This was our 13th cruise overall. Regent is known for including Business Class international air travel as a part of its packages. Their booking for us went well. The chosen air itinerary was efficient and our British Air flights were comfortable and well-serviced. The Pre-Cruise in London, purchased by two of us, was fair. We were housed in a very nice hotel with a good room, included and good breakfasts, and an incredible, central location (we could walk in 10 minutes to Buckingham Palace and to many of the major sites). The two tours we took were mixed. The London tour was fantastic while the second tour to the English countryside including Bath and the Cotswolds was disappointing and a waste of time (with way too much bus time). A second day in London seeing the sites we missed and perhaps visiting some museums would have been much more desirable. Our transfers to the hotel and to the ship on the third Pre-Cruise day went flawlessly. The Navigator is an old ship and it shows. But it is clean and extremely well-serviced. It met our expectations. The smaller ship, with under 500 passengers, was quiet and a nice change from the frenzy of larger ships. We never waited in line (even for the buffet; by the way, the buffet was the best ever in our travels). At the pool, the well-appointed chairs and lounges always had availability. From our perspective, smaller is definitely better than larger, though you sacrifice a larger diversity of amenities and entertainment options, aspects we did not miss. Service largely met expectations and was excellent. We felt pampered! In our cabin, the only disappointment was consistently low water pressure. However, the service provided by our cabin attendant and her assistant was superb. The room had a walk-in closet, large bathroom with a small shower and conventional tub. There was a sleeping area and a “living” area with a new large TV. The food was very good—not excellent though. Service in the main dining room (Compass Rose) and the Buffet was great. The two specialty restaurants, though, were disappointing. The Italian restaurant (where the buffet is converted into an evening venue) had marginal food and poor service. Our waiter ignored us, did not respond to requests and had an “attitude,” the only truly bad service while on board. The Prime 7 restaurant had adequate service, but food taste and quality were not up to par. We’ve had better specialty restaurant experiences on “main stream” carriers like Holland America, Celebrity, and, even (at times) Royal Caribbean. The 12-person entertainment troupe and band were excellent—as good as or better than on much larger ships. Bar service was truly excellent, with great offerings, superb bar attendants and bar tenders. Other entertainment offerings were okay. We found all to our liking, but the music at the piano bar and elsewhere was “outdated,” with a lot from the 1950s to 1970s, perhaps in keeping with an older clientele (we are in our 60s and thought we were on the younger side!). Our two major disappointments involved disembarkation and the included excursions. Disembarkation was completely botched. Regent arranged a 4 am departure from the ship to enable us to make a 7 am Aer Lingus connecting flight from Dublin to London. This was unavoidable. However, the roughly 30 people leaving at that time were taken to a bus and our luggage was already in the dark cargo hold below the bus. We were asked to identify our bags to ensure they were on the bus. It was still nighttime. It was 4 am! There was no light other than from the bus. Bags sat randomly all across the hold (maybe 100 to 125 bags). It was impossible to see all the bags (many of us used our cell phone flashlights). You had to contort yourself to get even a fair view. A few of us had difficulty finding our bags and asked that some of the “first row” bags be removed. Grunting, the few personal resisted (there was one young woman from Regent without any authority or real understanding of what was happening, two ship's crew or port stevedores—and the bus driver). I could not locate one of our large bags. I was told staff would find it and send it on. I refused saying they should find it now. The staff insisted that I had overlooked the bag. I had not. They began unloading all of the loaded bags. Mine was not there. One crew member was dispatched to look for it and, lo and behold, he came back with it a few minutes later. At 4 am time was wasted (my apologies for holding up other passengers) and, more importantly, no thought was given to this process. A more traditional approach of identifying bags in a lit area and having cruise personal take them to the bus would have solved this problem. We guessed that Regent decided that its very hard working staff (I mean this sincerely) needed their sleep and that the few passengers leaving at 4 am (based on flights chosen BY Regent) could fetch for themselves, including looking in the dark for their bags under a bus in a parking lot without lights. If 4 am is a reasonable departure time, as selected by Regent (after all, they booked our flights), it should be a reasonable time to have the process fully staffed. Foolishness and enough to make us think twice about booking again with Regent...but the saga continues... We were driven to the Dublin Airport. We passed the terminals and were let off the bus in a dark parking lot exclusively reserved for tour buses, some distance away from the terminals. The young lady from Regent, instructed us to find our bags, which were taken off the bus by the driver working alone (with our assistance). We asked, “what now?” and were told we needed to walk to the terminal—no less than a 15-minute hike with each group of passengers having roughly four large bags. No one knew which terminal was “right” for them, there were no signs showing arrivals and departures (why have signs in a bus parking lot?), and we were set on our way. There were airport carts nearby and our group, feeling a bit like refugees, began a slow caravan to the terminals. We passed by Terminal One because it looked old and empty (later we learned that many of us could have completed our arrangements in Terminal One, but no one—especially Regent—informed us of this). We arrived at Terminal Two, seemingly the major Aer Lingus terminal. It looked like a New York Subway at 5 pm on a Friday afternoon—people everywhere with lines of hundreds of people. Even though there is no business class for Aer Lingus on our flight, we were fortunate enough to find their “club” line, which was fairly short, and we were able to check in and avoid the very long lines (we were elated but a bit guilty-feeling after we passed large families who had to endure the long lines). Regent failed us. They could have made arrangements to get us to the correct terminals with our baggage. Instead, it was like being released from prison, “take this bus and your belongings to the city and we hope someone will be there to pick you up” (and this is a purported luxury carrier?). Much of the good from our vacation was undone by this poorly planned disembarkation. We were already tired waking up after a few hours sleep and our moods and physical selves were depleted by Regent’s extremely poor handling of this situation. This most definitely was NOT a luxury experience. The second negative involved many of our included, self-picked excursions. Way too much time was spent on buses and not enough time in towns seeing the sites. A good example: In Holyhead, Wales we elected to take a tour to one of England’s premier national parks—Snowdonia. The weather was poor, but so be it. Our first stop was a restroom break in a nice town, Caernarfon. There was a fabled castle (which we'd have liked to tour) and nice shops in the town. We were there for 20 minutes to urinate! We then drove through Snowdonia—beautiful. We finally went to another town, bordering Snowdonia, and spent more than an hour looking at stores and bathrooms. The second town was not nearly as intriguing or as nice as the first. This was a recurring theme of our trip. We began calling it “the teasing.” We’d stop for a restroom break in a seemingly great venue, only to drive much farther to find a not as interesting venue. Why? Guides were not to blame—most were wonderful. Much more thought should be given by Regent to excursion venues and routes (and by us, acknowledging that we chose our own excursions from among the “included” list). A guiding precept should be to minimize bus time. If there is a great venue enroute, don’t just stop for the bathroom; allow some time there, perhaps eliminating the second town from the tour. This recurrent theme also affected the pre-cruise and it is, in our view, a significant problem. Regent staff should go on all considered excursions before they are chosen by the line. Tweaking should occur so that the trips are improved. The bottom line, from this long-winded review, is that Regent generally has great service and staff, nice ships, but has wrinkles that need to be addressed. We had high expectations based on Regent’s claim to be “luxury.” We were committed to trying an all-inclusive cruise and Regent could have had us as a future customer without much more effort had they not botched the disembarkation and had given more thought to excursions. Now, we will continue to search for the “best” cruise line--the one we hope to use for the balance of our travels. They had us hooked, then lost us. Read Less
17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My husband and I just returned from a wonderful 11-night cruise on board Regent’s Seven Seas Voyager. After months of anticipation, we can’t believe that our voyage is over. We knew the first half of 2019 was going to be a pressure ... Read More
My husband and I just returned from a wonderful 11-night cruise on board Regent’s Seven Seas Voyager. After months of anticipation, we can’t believe that our voyage is over. We knew the first half of 2019 was going to be a pressure cooker, so it was important to have a major trip on our calendar to keep us going through the winter and spring. More importantly, we needed to go somewhere spectacular to celebrate my husband’s 60th birthday. Choosing the Cruise and Making Reservations: We decided to set sail for the Dalmatian Coast and the French/Italian Rivieras. Planning for our Adriatic/Mediterranean adventure began in July 2018 when we logged on to a number of cruise line websites to research our options. We focused on Seabourn, Silver Seas, Celebrity, Cunard, and Regent. After significant discussion, we chose Regent, which offered excellent and all-inclusive pricing, great itineraries, and convenient travel dates. Being a bit of a control freak, I did not use a travel agent; rather, I contacted Regent directly through its website and its toll-free telephone number. I called Regent on a Sunday to finalize the reservation. The agent was friendly, efficient, and knowledgeable. After 30 minutes on the phone, we were confirmed on the Voyager for its 11-night “Treasures of the Mediterranean” cruise, departing from Venice on Saturday, June 15 and ending in Monaco on Tuesday, June 25. We opted for a Concierge Suite on Deck 7 (Suite 738.) While the cruise itinerary did not include any sea days, we were attracted to the fabulous port calls of Split and Dubrovnik in Croatia; Durres (for Tirana), Albania; Corfu, Greece; Taormina, Sorrento (for Capri), Civitavecchia (for Rome), Livorno (for Florence/Pisa) in Italy; and St. Tropez, France. The user-friendly Regent website is the perfect place to manage your cruise experience. As soon as the reservation was final, I was able to sign on to complete our guest information forms. Most importantly, the site provides a calendar of key dates, including when you can make excursion and specialty dining reservations. Once I had those dates in hand, I programmed task items into my personal Outlook account and set reminders so I wouldn’t forget to act. During the eleven months between making the reservation and our departure date, I checked the Regent website numerous times just to remind myself that we had a fabulous vacation in our future. In October 2018, my husband and I sat down at the computer to review all of our excursion options. It took us about an hour to make our choices. Most of Regent’s excursions are included in your cruise fare and we were pleased that we could reserve space eight months ahead of time– one less thing to worry about on embarkation day when the lines at the excursion desk are long and many popular tours are sold out. Moreover, if we changed our minds about a certain excursion we could cancel or book an alternative at any time. In March, Regent opened online reservations for the Voyager’s specialty restaurants – Chartreuse, a charming French bistro and Prime 7, a traditional American steakhouse. There is no upcharge for either restaurant, but seating is limited so I highly recommend making reservations ahead of time. The Trip Begins: After months of anticipation, the sun finally rose on Thursday, June 13, 2019. We spent the morning packing and preparing the house for our pet sitter. After saying goodbye to our two beautiful dachshunds (our most precious possessions,) the car service to SFO pulled away from our house in Marin County. The exact time was 10:27 a.m. in California, or 7:27 p.m. at our first destination -- Venice. Air Arrangements and Ground Transfers: Regent cruise fares include roundtrip business class airfare, even if your port of embarkation and port of disembarkation are different. In our case, we began in Venice and ended in Monaco. If you decide to make your own air transportation arrangements, Regent will issue you a credit. Because most cruise lines don’t include business class airfare as part of their standard cruise fares, I normally make our own air reservations. We will not fly economy class, so on previous cruises we purchased our airline tickets independently – sometimes with cash and other times with cash + points. For this trip, however, I took a leap of faith and decided to let Regent make the air arrangements for me. I wasn’t about to give up total control, however, so I paid $350 ($175/pp.) to submit an air deviation request, which allows you to pick your own carrier and routes. Air deviation requests are accepted beginning 270 days before departure and must be made at least 35 days before departure. In our case, we wanted to fly on a Star Alliance carrier (for the points) and we wanted at least the outbound connection to be in Europe. 270 days before departure, I contacted the Regent Air Deviation Department with a list of five possible itineraries. My first choice was on Swiss Air, with connections through Zurich. Unfortunately, seats were not available. My second choice was on Lufthansa, with connections through Germany. Space was available and reserved. Regent sent me a confirmation email (with the Lufthansa booking code) on the same day and even was able to assign us our preferred seats. And even though the ticket was purchased through Regent, we earned United Mileage Plus PQMs with the business class bonuses. Our departure from SFO was delayed about an hour because of various ground issues (occupied gate for incoming flight from FRA and the breakdown of a catering truck.). We arrived at FRA with about 35 minutes to clear European passport control and connect to our next flight. Luckily, there were nearly 40 people on our flight who were connecting to VCE, so the Lufthansa ground staff had a special bus waiting for us that first took us to a lower level private room where we proceeded through passport control, and then to our A320. In the end, we left FRA 15 minutes late, but arrived at VCE on time at 2:00 p.m. Our luggage did not make the connection. This was the only major hiccup of the trip. As is common in Europe, there were not separate baggage offices for each airline at VCE. Instead, issues related to lost luggage for all airlines are outsourced and handled by one company. The Regent representative who met us (and many others) at VCE knew exactly what to do and before you know it I was at the front of the line at the baggage office. My bar-coded baggage tags were not useful. The agent told me that she did not have the ability to track our bags and that we would have to file a claim. She further said that once the bags arrived at VCE, they would be delivered either to the hotel that night or to the ship the next day. She added, however, that the delivery schedule was up to the driver and she could not guarantee that we would receive our bags before our ship sailed the next evening. There was no Lufthansa representative in the baggage hall and calls to Lufthansa both in Germany and the United States were fruitless. The next Lufthansa arrival from FRA was scheduled for 3:30 p.m., so we decided to wait in the baggage hall (a secure area, so we could not leave.) It was delayed and did not arrive in Venice until 4:45 p.m. Unfortunately, our bags were not on that flight either. We were exhausted, frustrated, and annoyed. Luckily, just as I was about to have a public and ugly meltdown, I got a text message from Lufthansa that said our bags were being loaded on to a flight that was expected to arrive at VCE shortly after 6:00 p.m. We were not confident, however, that they would be delivered to us either that night or the next day, so we decided to wait at the airport. Finally, around 6:20 p.m., we had our bags in hand. In retrospect, I am glad we waited at VCE. One couple who was on our flight from FRA to VCE and on our cruise did not receive their bags until one week later. All during our time in the baggage hall, we kept the Regent representative apprised of our situation. When we learned that the bags would be arriving sometime around 6:00 p.m., he told us that the last transfer to the hotel departed at 6:00 p.m. Keeping in mind that all of our transfers were included in our cruise fare, we asked him what arrangements would be made to get us to the hotel. He said we were on our own. We asked him if he could wait for us or give us some sort of voucher for transportation, but he refused and said there was nothing he could do. In the end, he left without us and we spent the equivalent of $145 for a private water taxi to the hotel. I brought this issue to Regent’s attention once we were on board the Voyager. The front desk clerk profusely apologized, documented all of the details, and called me two days later to tell me that I would receive a $145 credit to my onboard account. Nice job Regent. On the back end of the trip, Regent provided coach service from the pier in Monaco to NCE. The ride was comfortable and scenic. We arrived at NCE with plenty of time to spare. Hotel Accommodations in Venice: At 7:00 p.m. (local time) on Friday, June 14, our water taxi pulled up to the dock in front of the Hilton Molino Stucky in Venice. We were excited, but exhausted from traveling nearly 24 hours – the last five of which were spent at VCE’s baggage claim area, but as I said above that was just a hiccup and we were happy. The Hilton Molino is a wonderful hotel on Giudecca Island. The building is a former pasta factory. How Italian!!! Our room was small, but lovely, with a large bathroom that included a separate shower stall. The king size bed was comfortable. It was a great place to spend our first night abroad. The hotel was included in our cruise fare and Regent made the reservation for us. It was a great choice. Having traveled to Europe often, we knew that if we wanted to get a good night’s sleep, we needed to remain awake as late as possible. So, upon arrival at the Hilton we quickly changed clothes and headed to the hotel’s outdoor restaurant, Bacaromi, for dinner. It was delightful to sit in the open air and watch the sun set as the boats traveled back and forth along the Giudecca Canal. After dinner we took a brief stroll in the immediate neighborhood before heading up to our room where we promptly fell asleep. The next morning we rose around 6:00 a.m. feeling rested and ready to go. Before a satisfying buffet breakfast in the hotel restaurant, we checked in with the onsite Regent representative, who told us that we were booked on the 1:45 p.m. water shuttle from the hotel to the Port of Venice. This gave us plenty time to wander around the city. The Hilton has a free water shuttle to San Marco Square, so off we went to explore. Embarkation, Ship, Cabin, and Sail Away: We returned to the Hilton around 1:00 p.m. Earlier that morning, we left our luggage outside our room so it could be picked up and transferred to the ship. We asked the Regent representative if we could catch an earlier water shuttle to the port. There was one about to depart and she told us to hop on. Twenty minutes later, we were at the Venice passenger ship terminal. Check in was a breeze. We filled out a health form, and presented the agent with our passports and credit card. In return, she gave us our “key card” room key and maps of the ship. Shortly thereafter, we breezed through security and boarded the Voyager via a gangway that was connected to Deck 4. There was not a photographer at the gangway to take our picture as is common on so many other cruise lines. We did not miss this service. We were on board at 1:45 p.m. The ship’s interior and public space décor is classy and understated. She is not the flashiest ship at sea, but she is comfortable. We particularly liked to hang out in the Observation Lounge on Deck 11 for a pre-dinner cocktail and afternoon trivia matches. We also spent a lot of time outside on Deck 12. We liked to be on that deck early in the morning as we sailed into our next port (so peaceful) and often were back in the evening as we sailed away. The dress code never gets any more formal than elegant casual, which essentially means no jeans, shorts, or t-shirts in the public spaces after 6:00 p.m. No need to bring a tuxedo, tie or suitcoat. After spending all day in the hot sun, it was nice to be able to relax at dinner in an open collar shirt and slacks. Three weeks before departure we received an email from Regent with a reasonable offer to upgrade to a Penthouse Suite. My husband and I discussed the offer and decided to accept it. We were assigned to Suite 787, which is in the aft of the ship. We have been in aft cabins before on other cruise lines and enjoyed the experience. They tend to be quieter. We have never been disturbed by engine noise or exhaust, and we like having the both the port and starboard side views. Our suite was approximately 300 square feet, with a 50 sft. veranda. Regent informed us well ahead of time that the suites would not be ready until 2:30 p.m. on embarkation day. Nevertheless, curiosity got the best of us, so the first thing we did was to make our way to Suite 787, primarily to see its location vis-a-vie the stairs and the elevators. Just as we got to the cabin, an announcement was made that all of the suites were ready for occupancy. Great timing!!! Penthouse Suites come with butler service. The butler serves in-suite meals (we had breakfast in our suite a number of times.) Had we asked, he would have packed and unpacked for us or would have arranged a cocktail party in our cabin. Each evening he delivered a tray of canapes, and made sure that our bar remained stocked. Once a reservation is confirmed (and up to seven days before departure,) passengers can submit personalized requests on the Regent website to select in-suite preferences for premium beverages, snacks, bedding, pillow types, and arrangements for special occasions. Our suite had a large bathroom with a shower and a bathtub. We are not bathtub people, so I would have taken that space to enlarge the vanity for his/his sinks and to install a private toilet, so one person could shower/shave, while the other person could poop in private. The walk-in closet was surprisingly large with plenty of room for all of our clothes and shoes. The bedroom and adjoining sitting room were the perfect size for two people. In addition to the beds, there was a small, but comfortable couch, an armchair, a coffee table and a built-in shelf under the television. The shelf is too narrow to be used as a desk. Underneath the shelf is the mini-bar cabinet that also houses barware. At the back of our cabin was the sliding-glass doors that led to the veranda, which included two lounge chairs and a small table. The interactive flat-screen television offers complimentary movies on demand, standard channels include MSNBC, CNN (and unfortunately Fox News), Sky News, CNBC and BBC World, plus 15 channels of music. You can also see the view from the Bridge Cam, tune in to the nautical information channel and watch the Destination Services channel to learn more about your ports of call. There are electric outlets throughout the suite, but only two U.S.-standard outlets. The adjustable thermostat indicates hotter or cooler, but not specific temperatures. We adjusted it to the coolest setting possible and were quite comfortable. The individual reading lights above the bed were a nice touch. Our cruise was scheduled to depart Venice at 5:30 p.m., but because of the June 2nd crash of the MSC Opera into the River Countess, local authorities placed restrictions on cruise ship traffic in the Giudecca Canal. As a result, only one cruise ship per hour was allowed into the canal. There were seven other ships in port with us, so our departure was delayed until 10:00 p.m. Despite the delay, it was a delightful sail away. The Passengers and Crew. Regent is a luxury cruise line. Nearly everything is included in your fare, so it is pricey compared to other lines. We were expecting the passengers to be couples primarily in their 40s and older traveling without children. We were wrong. This particular cruise had a number of large families with multiple children ranging from infants to kids in college. We were told that this was highly unusual, and that most of the time Regent draws an older crowd. Although we did not want or expect to be on a “family” cruise, the kids (for the most part) were well-behaved, and did not interfere with our positive experience. (The one exception was the one group of kids on Deck 8 who got their kicks playing with the elevators, and knocking on cabin doors and then running away. I had a brief run-in with their nasty, nasty grandmother in the elevator. She has no reason to be proud of her bratty grandkids, but I digress…) My guess is that more than 65% of the passengers were American (luckily, we saw no MAGA hats), and 20% were from Great Britain. The other 15% primarily were from China, Australia, and Germany. Public announcements were limited and were in English only. The crew, of course, comes from everywhere. The captain was Italian. The crew was impressive. Customer service was paramount. From the minute we stepped on board, we felt that each crew member made us the center of attention. Whenever we passed a crew member in the hall, they would smile and greet us with a warm hello. They were friendly, helpful, and approachable. Many of them had a terrific sense of humor. They worked hard and did their best to create a luxurious, but relaxed atmosphere. Our butler and cabin attendant were fantastic, and the waiters and bartenders went out of their way to make us feel special. This was our 13th cruise and this was the best crew by far. The only small exception was the Destination Services staff – more on that below. We met some wonderful people on board, which formed our “circle of friends” for the entire voyage. So far, we have done a great job at keeping in touch with each other through social media. Regent doesn’t force people to socialize, but provides ample opportunities to do so. One interesting Regent tradition is the “Block Party.” Once each cruise (on this one it was the day we sailed away from Corfu), everyone is encouraged to step into the hallway around 6:00 p.m. to meet their neighbors. During this social hour, waiters make their way through the ship with champagne and hors d’oeuvres, and the senior staff circulates around the decks to say hello. It was a fun and relaxing way to meet people. Food and Entertainment: The food on board was excellent. La Veranda and the Pool Grill, both on Deck 11, were great options for breakfast and lunch. For breakfast we rotated between room service, sitting on the aft deck at La Veranda, and a more formal breakfast in Compass Rose. My favorite breakfast was the Avocado Toast in Compass Rose, although the Eggs Benedict (not on the menu) was a close second. We both agreed that the ship’s “house blend” coffee was horrible. Most mornings we ended up at the Coffee Connection on Deck 5 for a decent cup of coffee or for a cappuccino. We often ate lunch on shore. The highlight was a fabulous ravioli in Rome and a seaside lunch in St. Tropez at La Terrasse at the Cheval Blanc Hotel. Outstanding!!! Lunch on the ship was either at La Veranda or the Pool Grill. I liked the informality of the Pool Grill, which offered a wonderful selection of salads, fruits, and sandwiches, in addition to hamburgers and hot dogs that were made on a real outside grill. Dinner, of course, was the main meal of the day. Most of the time we ate in the Compass Rose, which offers open seating until 9:30 p.m. We usually ate at 8:00 p.m. – sometimes alone, but often with some of our new friends. The menu was extensive and changed daily, although some of the appetizers were offered every night (the crab and avocado starter was exquisite.). Also offered daily were USDA prime steaks and seafood, prepared a variety of ways. We are not big meat eaters, but we both agreed that the steaks on the Voyager were phenomenal. Service in Compass Rose was consistently attentive. On our first full day on the ship we had dinner at Chartreuse, which Regent describes as a “chic Parisian fine dining restaurant.” The service and the cuisine exceeded our expectations. When we first arrived we were seated at a table toward the back of the restaurant. We noticed, however, that a couple at a window table were about to leave. We asked the maître d’ if we could move, and he made sure the table was cleared and cleaned quickly after the couple left. The highlight of the dinner was the cheese soufflé, which was light, airy, and delicious. My husband’s scallops were divine. Each scallop was topped with a thin sliver of prosciutto, which added texture and additional flavor. On our third day we had dinner at Prime 7. Prior to leaving home, I let Regent know that this would be a celebration dinner for my husband’s 60th birthday. Not only did our butler decorate our cabin that day with a “Happy Birthday” banner and balloons, but the Prime 7 staff had champagne and a decedent chocolate birthday cake ready for him. When the time came, the restaurant staff gathered around our table to sing Happy Birthday. It was an evening to remember. Our Prime 7 dinner was out of this world. I had the goat cheese, red pepper, and portabella tart to start. The crust was buttery and flaky, and the flavors delighted my palate. For my main course, I had the traditional surf and turf and my husband had a steak. The cruise fare includes unlimited drinks – both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, including most premium wines and beers. I am not a big drinker, but I really enjoyed the Aperol Spritz in the Observation Lounge. My husband enjoys his beer, occasional cocktail, and wine at dinner – not to mention his Bailey’s on the rocks night cap. We did not attend any of the shows in the Constellation Theatre. We preferred to have dinner around 8:00 p.m., and unlike at home where we tend to eat fast, dinner usually lasted around two hours. A couple of times we stopped by the casino (gross winnings of $225), but because we are early risers, we often were back in our cabin by 11:00 p.m. Excursions and Ports of Call: My only complaint about our itinerary was the lack of sea days; they are my favorite. Sea days are incredibly relaxing and a great time to truly unwind. Because we left Venice late, our arrival in Split was delayed until Noon the next day, which gave us at least a morning at sea. We chose our excursions before leaving home, but made a couple of adjustments on board. Excursions are arranged by the ship’s Destination Services crew. They were the least impressive staff group on board. They were often rude, a bit bossy, and didn’t seem interested in answering your questions or assisting you with changes. On a positive note, our excursion tickets were waiting for us in our suite when we boarded. Check in for all excursions was in the Constellation Theatre on Deck 4, and was generally efficient. In most ports, we were alongside the pier, so it was easy to get on and off the ship. In three ports – Taormina, Sorrento, and St. Tropez, we used tender boats to get to shore. Although some of the tenders were crowded, the crew did an excellent job getting people from ship to shore. I’m not going to review each excursion here; rather, here are some observations. In Split, we signed up for an excursion to historic Trogir, about 20 miles west of Split, which ended with a short walking tour in Split, including the Diocletian Palace. In retrospect, we should have spent more time in Split. We didn’t get a lot of time at the Palace or an opportunity to see other landmarks in the city. Trogir was interesting, but we spent too much time there. In Taormina (you dock in Naxos) we originally signed up for the Mt. Etna tour, but were so glad that we changed our minds and opted instead for a walking tour of Taormina. The city, which is 1,200 feet above the sea, is spectacularly beautiful. Rome was a bit of a bust. We’ve been to Rome before and have seen most of the major sites. On this trip, we did “Rome on our Own,” which only included roundtrip express train service from Civitavecchia to the city. Rome in June is not the place to be if you only have eight hours. It was hot, dirty, and crowded. (We spent a week there in January and it was delightful.). Lunch was fantastic and our second visit to the Vatican museums was somewhat enjoyable. In retrospect, however, we should have opted for another excursion that did not take us into the city. Lesson learned. The biggest fail logistically was in Sorrento. We opted for an excursion to Capri with two other couples. This required a tender boat ride to the pier in Sorrento, a hydrofoil boat ride to Capri, and then a minibus ride to Anacapri. Anacapri is on the highest part of the island at the base of Monte Solaro. Once there we hopped on the Monte Solaro chair lift. The ride was spectacular. During a 13-minute ascent to the summit we enjoyed splendid views of the Gulf of Naples with Vesuvius in the background, the Gulf of Salerno, the Isle of Ischia and the breathtaking beauty of the blue Mediterranean. Monte Solaro is the highest point on Capri and provides stunning Kodak moments. You ride alone on the chair lift and it is not for anyone who has a fear of heights. You can hike back down to Anacapri from Monte Solaro, but we opted to take the chair lift round trip. After our visit to Anacapri, we took a minibus down to Capri town in the middle of the island. While we had a wonderful lunch at Ristorante di Giorgio, we felt like we should have been a bit more discerning and not let our tour guide pressure us into eating there. Still, we couldn’t complain about the views of the sea or the wonderful pizza. Things fell apart after lunch. To get back to the ship we had to take a funicular down to the port of Capri, take the hydrofoil back to Sorrento, and then catch the tender boat back to the ship. Unfortunately, Regent held all of the excursion groups in Capri until a set time instead of letting us make our way back to the ship on our own. The result was long lines, big crowds, lots of waiting around, and a 2.5-hour trip from Capri back to the ship. Not fun. Disembarkation: On our penultimate day, we left St. Tropez at 11:00 p.m. and made our way to Monaco – 60 nautical miles away. We were awake and on Deck 12 at 6:00 a.m. as we approached Monaco and docked alongside Quai Prince Rainer II. This would be a day where we saw the sun rise over Monaco and the sun set behind the Golden Gate Bridge, 5,989 miles away. I was very sad that the cruise was ending. The prior evening, we place our luggage outside our suite so the crew could off load it in Monaco. After a final breakfast in our cabin, we disembarked at 9:00 a.m., claimed our luggage, and boarded our coach transfer to NCE. The trip home on Lufthansa (NCE-MUC-SFO) was uneventful (no issues with our luggage) and we arrived home at 9:00 p.m. Our dogs were very happy to see us, and we were overjoyed to see them. Our Mediterranean adventure exceeded our expectations. It was a great way to spend our vacation time. We were very pleased with our experience on the Voyager and would not hesitate to sail with Regent again. In fact, while on board we made reservations for an August 2020 voyage on the Seven Seas Navigator from Amsterdam to Barcelona. The countdown has begun…..!!!!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We had tried to get a group of friends together to tour the British Isles for a few years, but it never happened. My wife and I decided to take a British Isles cruise on Regent's Explorer instead, and are very glad we did. We used ... Read More
We had tried to get a group of friends together to tour the British Isles for a few years, but it never happened. My wife and I decided to take a British Isles cruise on Regent's Explorer instead, and are very glad we did. We used the included business class to arrive in Southampton a day early. We mainly used the day to shake off jet lag, and the next day used the hotel's complimentary car service to get to the port at around 12:30. Embarkation was a breeze; we were the only passengers there, and had a choice of 10 people to take care of us. We had cocktails on the pool deck, and were in our room with our luggage just after 2:00. That couldn't have been easier. The room was an F2 (Superior) suite. It had a large walk in closet, with more hangers than we needed (and we overpacked). The bathroom was nice with double sinks, a bathtub and a separate shower. All of the surfaces were luxurious marble. The bed was very comfy and faced the veranda, the veranda was big and had nice wicker chairs,and our room attendant dropped off a bottle of scotch and a bottle of bourbon. No complaints about our room at all, and it was one of the bottom end suites! We spent some time touring the ship, and were frankly amazed at how nice all of the public areas were. It's maximum luxury, almost obsessively so. Everything was spotless and appeared to be in perfect shape. Explorer has been in service for about three years, and looks like it's a brand new vessel. It's supposed to be refurbished this fall, but the passenger-visible areas don't seem to need it. We split our dinners between Compass Rose (the main dining room) and the specialty restaurants. We like to eat late, and that made it easy to get additional reservations at the specialty places. We can honestly say that we didn't have a single dish that we were unhappy with. The service was also great, everything was perfectly paced. One or both of Prime 7 and Chartreuse are open for lunch each day, and that was really nice. All in all, it couldn't have been better. We don't pay much attention to the entertainment. Since we eat late, the show has usually started by the time we're ready. But what we did see was pretty good. Cruise director John Barron's show was excellent. He's really a great CD, the best we've run across. They had an Irish flute player that we liked. The real highlights were two groups that John brought on board. In Belfast there was a troupe of musicians and dancers that told the Belfast story. But the topper was in Liverpool where he had the Cavern Club Beatles on stage. They are the house band at the Cavern Club, the place the actual Beatles play hundreds of times. The theater was definitely rocking that night! Cons: 1. The theater has too many obstructed vision seats. The steps are tricky when the lights go out, and we saw a woman fall and break her ankle. She had to be airlifted off the ship the next day. 2. British weather. Pros: 1. Literally everything else. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My husband and I just finished 9 days on the Regent Navigator, a fund-raising private charter cruise sponsored by the WWII Museum in New Orleans. The trip was in honor of the 75th DDAY Normandy invasion commemoration, and its veterans, ... Read More
My husband and I just finished 9 days on the Regent Navigator, a fund-raising private charter cruise sponsored by the WWII Museum in New Orleans. The trip was in honor of the 75th DDAY Normandy invasion commemoration, and its veterans, and the excursions were primarily focussed on historic locations along the route and culminated in attendance of the DDAY ceremonies at the American Cemetery near Omaha Beach. My review rating of 3/5 is only about the ship experience itself, compared with other mostly luxury lines I have cruised with before (Seabourn (SB), Silversea (SS), Hapag-Lloyd (HL), and Crystal, plus Oceania, and also compared with a prior, non-charter cruise we had taken on the Regent Voyager several years ago. I was informed in advance by a Regent expert that the facilities, food and crew on Regent charters would be the same quality as one experiences on non-charter cruises, so this gave me a chance to resample Regent after several years of absence to give them another chance, though my primary reason for booking was the special event. Short summary: Overall I give the ship, food and crew a 3.4 rating overall and would not be tempted to book more cruises with Regent absent unusual circumstances. Again, this is my rating only for the ship, food and crew, not the customized entertainment and excursion agenda, as we did not have traditional stage “entertainment” as is usual on board Regent (BTW the topical events on and off ship organized by the WWII museum were very good, no regrets there, 5/5, though the ceremonies on DDAY involved very tiring long lines, neither Regent's nor WW2 Museum's fault). Food quality, service, and ship condition were good enough, though with flaws, i.e., like several years ago. Food on SB and SS previously was better, and it was much better on HL (though the latter also charges a higher per diem). Details: SHIP, ambience and suite: uncrowded and comfortable, well-maintained and clean in general, but the ship is showing its age a bit. All the furniture (the bed, couches, loungers, etc.) were much more comfortable and softer (important for those of us with musculoskeletal problems) than on SB. We were in a basic deluxe window suite (no veranda) on deck 5, aft. It had around 300 sq feet including a spacious walk-in closet, mini-fridge (all-inclusive and customizable), couch, desk area, vanity table, and bathroom with separate shower and bathtub areas with two nice grab bars and a rubber mat. Moderate ship/structure negatives were: 1. Initially we had brown water and low water pressure during high demand periods (but this was fixed with some pipe and filter work within 24 hours of reporting it). Per other reviews, this has happened before in recent months 2. The bathtub plug did not work (a common problem in my travels, so I used my portable rubber bathtub plug) 3. No bedside charger (only available at the desk and vanity). 4. The decor is a bit dated and carpeting is faded or slightly spotted 5. The desk area had no storage above or below it other than 1 small middle drawer (space was occupied by the fridge, glassware storage, and a flat-screen on the wall), though there was some room on top. TV had nice resolution, with basic dining venue menus available, though it did not display the MDR (Compass Rose) daily specials (only the “always available” options), and excursions listed were inaccurate Unfortunately the destinations descriptions and enrichment lecture recordings ran in a loop rather than being available for on-demand selection, like they were on other lines 6. Bath towels in our suite were thin and scratchy the first few days (definitely not luxury, as hey were old and worn out), then some got softer and fluffier. 7. Although our cabin was thankfully quiet and peaceful, with no vibrations, the main auditorium area (called the Seven Seas Lounge) often had loud vibration you could not miss during presentations. 8. There is also no large, dedicated forward outdoor observation area like on SB (here, you had to stand on the mini-golf lawn). 9. Internet was slow most of the time, impossible at others, but this is just like on all other lines I have been on, and (if not on a charter like this one where internet was included), quoted prices were high. 10. DH also did not like that the only two hot tubs were right near the pool, i.e., none were in a more private area like SB offers, and access was already closed early in the evening, before it even got dark, so there was no option for post-dinner soaks at sunset. FOOD: We had a few good, properly prepared meals (lamb dish in the small Prime 7 venue, and a good spare rib BBQ over noodles in MDR). We also had good croissants (though not as good as on SB) and generally good breads with variety (except in the Italian venue in the evening) . The food was mostly disappointing, though there were many choices, e.g., there were “always available” options to accommodate a variety of basic American taste combinations. Salmon entrees are hard to ruin, but they managed to do so in the MDR, Compass Rose. Most food was overcooked, e.g., ordering something medium meant it would arrive well-done. Breakfast meat and cheese selections were mundane, but morning bacon was always very good. The all-day coffee bar was self-serve push-button style, like on Oceania and Holland America, and was neither luxurious nor good anywhere. Desserts were no better than several years ago, and what they described as “cream” parts tasted more like Cool Whip than real whipped cream). Cookies at the cafe and cafeteria venue (La Veranda) were always the same sugar-free or regular basics, and were not very tasty, with no change for 9 nights. The evening Italian venue (buffet plus ordered entree) meal, was unremarkable. Hamburgers and hot dogs at the pool grill and room service were overcooked. The final insult was the “special farewell dinner” that was advertised to pax by the CD during the day, so the MDR got packed and was so full we were even turned away, so came back an hour later. It turned out to just be a labor-saving 3 course dinner with 3 fixed entree choices of fish, surf and turf, or vegetarian. We ordered the surf and turf and despite sawing away with great strength, I could barely cut, much less chew, the rubbery pieces of freezer-tasting disgusting old stuff they called lobster tail. Entrees also arrived cold, with oil around the potato and veggies already globbing up into clumps. I rarely send food with animal protein back, but I did here. Unlike on other lines (SB, HL), where we gravitated to enjoying a luxury lunch on board that surpassed venues portside, on this ship I would have made a point of eating off the ship as often as possible for lunch and dinner. SERVICE: Our cabin stewardess was a fast learner, and with her less bright male assistant, did a good job cleaning and meeting our limited customization requests in a timely manner, as long as we spelled everything out (so we had no service surprises or initiative from her, but she was good at following instructions). I still do not understand why hard, unripe fruit was mindlessly brought to the suite (bananas and apples are ready to eat, but what do you do with a rock-hard unripe plum or pear on a short cruise?) Very important was that the Do Not Disturb sign was always respected. Laundry came back the same day, unfortunately much of it shrunk as personnel likely did not always follow the international standardized laundry tag washing and drying instructions. Many clothing items that had been washed on other cruise lines without problems, shrank here, despite no weight gain. Food venue crew were mostly Filipino, who definitely smiled a lot, but who seemed inadequately trained for “luxury” service. Most annoying (beyond irritating fiascos with major wine service delays and comprehension barriers) was that most had an unfortunate habit of incessantly interrupting dining conversations, just as they did several years ago (I had forgotten about it until now). They would charge up to the table determined to recite their descriptions of food items or to ask questions, without pauses or regard for whether people were mid-sentence or had just put food into their mouths, and with no apologies for interrupting. They just needed to get their speeches over with and move on. I really appreciate the subtleness of good waiters on HL or SB more, when compared with most of these waiters and waitresses. Though they were almost always hard-working, because they were understaffed (e.g., tables in venues were often uncleared or unset for more guests to sit down), I did not find them to be any better than on mainstream Holland America. I usually have better and more consistent service at Applebee’s or other chain diners in the U.S. I only ordered cocktails a couple times at bars (cosmo), and each time they came back barely cooled and poorly prepared. Front desk personnel were polite and helpful (e.g., Julie). EMBARKATION and DISEMBARKATION: embarkation took an hour, probably because everyone showed at the same time from pre-cruise tours. Disembarkation was organized well by Regent, luggage had to be out at 11PM the night before, and we disembarked by color coding. IN SUM, even knowing what I know, because of the event, I would have booked this charter cruise anyway, as we came for the event, not for the food. We did not perceive the service we received here as up to what we expect from a company that calls itself luxury, however, and did not find it better than several years ago on a non-charter cruise on the Voyager. So we will be reluctant to book Regent again for a regular cruise, and will not consider it unless it is for a special event like this one where we book primarily for the event. Perhaps there were problems because this was a charter cruise and, contrary to what we had been advised prior to booking Regent, there may actually have been both food and staff cost-cutting measures implemented after all, without cruise line admission (we are not sure if Regent received more or less payment per passenger on this charter, compared with non-charters, though our total per diem for the event cruise was high). Management and crew may have known very well that most pax were there just for the event and would not likely be back anyway, so cut some corners, but I am speculating. So for now, we will stick with other luxury lines for non-charter cruising. After I had booked this cruise I learned that SB Ovation also had a charter option added for DDAY for the Museum, and in hindsight I of course have to wonder if food and service were similar, or better on that charter, event-oriented cruise. If there is a choice in the future, I will likely opt for a ship other than Regent Navigator. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This was my 5th cruise with RSSC, so I already knew I would like it. Here are some of the things I like about it. The Mariner is just the right size-small enough to go places others can't and large enough to have multiple places to ... Read More
This was my 5th cruise with RSSC, so I already knew I would like it. Here are some of the things I like about it. The Mariner is just the right size-small enough to go places others can't and large enough to have multiple places to dine and hang out. I like that it is really all inclusive, once on the ship I don't have to spend another dime if I don't want to. I like that even the lowest tier suites are large by the industry standard and are very comfortable and include a veranda. I like that it is generally all adult. On this cruise there were a few children, but they had special programs for them. There are no mandatory formal nights or assigned meal times. They generally offer a good selection of shore excursions, many of which included for free. The specialty restaurants are good, but the food in the main dining room is always very good as well. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
While not experienced cruisers, we have been on five previous cruises over the past 25 - 30 years with Carnival, Norwegian, and Holland America. We chose this cruise due to an invitation from my sister to join her and her husband on what ... Read More
While not experienced cruisers, we have been on five previous cruises over the past 25 - 30 years with Carnival, Norwegian, and Holland America. We chose this cruise due to an invitation from my sister to join her and her husband on what would be their sixth Regent cruise (they booked their seventh while onboard). We found the itinerary interesting which included Spanish, Portuguese, French, and British ports and loved the departure port (Barcelona) having spent a week there last year. Our journey began with a flawless and on-time flight on Delta through Atlanta to Barcelona. Delta One (their version of business class) was comfortable, the food was delicious, and I was able to sleep a few hours during the flight. We arrived in Barcelona Sunday morning before a Monday cruise departure day to an expectedly chaotic airport where we discovered Barcelona is second to Miami as the busiest cruise port in the world. Our bags were retrieved and turned over to representatives available at the airport and we were on a bus headed for the Fairmont hotel an hour after landing. Our hotel, the included pre-cruise selection by Regent, was very nice and located within a large garden-like area with beautiful grounds. Very quiet and relaxing. Regent representatives were onsite to assist with tours or cruise inquiries although we didn't require their assistance. The provided breakfast Monday morning, the day of the cruise, was high quality with plenty of choices to satisfy everyone. We had a couple of hours to relax prior to boarding our assigned bus to the pier. Bags were retrieved from our room the morning of departure. After a relatively short (45 minute) bus ride to the pier, we were ready to board. The embarkation process was efficient, easy, and relaxed. We experienced our first memorable interaction with a Regent employee during this process. A gentleman from the entertainment team greeted us with a smile, checked us in, invited us to the show that night, and sent us on our way. A great first impression even before we boarded the ship. Once onboard, we immediately noticed the quality, beauty, opulence, and luxury of the décor, design, furnishings, and atmosphere on the ship. Also, a wide variety of artwork could be found throughout the ship, some of which matched my taste, while some did not. We were aware of the hype surrounding this ship and reality matched the hype. Undeniably, the ship itself is beautiful in every imaginable way. Our cabin, a Concierge D on deck 10, was located steps away from the elevators and stairs and beneath the library above. The efficiency of the cabin design was impressive by being able to face the very comfortable king size bed toward to balcony so that from the bed we could see the sea or port. An abundance of drawer space (we didn't use half of them) could be found throughout the cabin. The closet was very large in relation to the cabin size and fully accommodated what ended up being our exaggerated over packing. The bathroom was impressive as well with two sinks, a separate tub and shower, and beautiful marble finishing throughout. Pre-cruise, we were attracted to a separate tub and shower, however; after a 12 night cruise, we never used the tub. Similarly, pre-cruise we appreciated that an illy coffeemaker would be located in our cabin yet we never used it. Our balcony was large, approximately 115 sq. ft., and had high quality furnishings including two large wicker reclining chairs, full size chaise lounge, and a table large enough for two people to enjoy a meal. The balcony angled toward the front of the ship which provided an unobstructed view forward without the need to lean over the railing. Furnishings, fixtures, and finishes inside the cabin were consistent with what would be found in four or five star hotel junior suite. Contrary to certain reviews, we found the dining onboard to be excellent without exception. Every meal was high quality, well presented, without lengthy wait times, and flavored deliciously. We dined at each specialty restaurant twice, ordered room service breakfast six times, and tried all other dining venues except the pool grill multiple times. I had seafood, veal, beef, and pasta main course dishes and all were great. Service was outstanding. Wines offered were very good and our glasses were never empty. Desserts were, unfortunately, too tempting to avoid. Frankly, absolutely no complaints related to food whatsoever. We experienced none of the issues to be found in reviews critical of dining venues located on the ship. We were left assuming we were either very fortunate or simply easy to please. Notably, the design, décor and atmosphere in the three specialty dining venues is truly unique and beautiful. The entertainment we found enjoyable and, well..............entertaining. Other reviews indicate entertainment leaves something to be desired yet we attended three stage productions, the cruise director John Barron's show, his assistant's show, and every performance by the two guest performers with Will Martin's shows being the best. The shows were an hour in length which we found to be perfect. We didn't expect Lady GaGa, Adelle, Elton John, or a Broadway theater production of Phantom of the Opera or Les Miserables to be performing on the cruise and therefore we appreciated the quality of the entertainment available. Additionally, we were always able to find comfortable seats available in the theater without obstructed sightlines. We also scheduled two cooking classes in the Culinary Arts Kitchen and thoroughly enjoyed both. The instructing chef made it fun with her energy and enthusiasm and by playing music and serving wine while teaching. Both classes were full (I believe 18 is capacity) which further added to the fun atmosphere. The facility itself is state of the art. Finally, we scheduled five appointments in the Canyon Ranch spa and were pleased with their services and facility. I had a massage that I would rank as good as any I have ever received. Service on the cruise is where the separation occurred between great and extraordinary. The meaningful difference maker for us. Nice ship, itinerary, tours, food, and entertainment - otherworldly service. One example: 6:30 am I go to the coffee shop to get a latte for my wife which Andre gladly prepares and a green tea for me. I then head to the pool deck where the fresh juice bar is located and pick up a celery and orange juice for my wife and head back to the cabin with my hands full. As I walk through the pool area the attendants who are changing the terry cloth covers on all the pool loungers smile and wish me a good morning. As I approach the door, one stops what he is doing and runs to open the door for me and asks if I need further assistance. As I near the door to our cabin, from behind me appears one of the captain's staff members from the bridge and he asks me if he can open my cabin door for me with his master key. This is only one example of many other incredibly positive interactions with Regent staff members on the ship. The training program must be world class because we never encountered anyone who wasn't pleasant, wasn't eager to serve, and who wasn't genuinely kind. The crew seemed happy. At dinner in Prime 7, our excellent server Ruth's assistant, who I would guess to be 21 or 22 years old, engaged in conversation with us and twice said how much she loved her job. How many 21 or 22 year olds in the U.S. would say how much they love their jobs? From beginning to end, we had no complaints whatsoever regarding the service we received and we compliment Regent for their very effective hiring and training practices. We experienced eleven ports while on our cruise and found many points of interest, cultural experiences, historical significance, and beauty at every one. All tours with the exception of Lisbon met or exceeded our expectations. Most notable tours included a D Day Landing Beach tour in Normandy and a wonderful dinner at Chateau Du Tertre in Bordeaux. We had high quality guides who were knowledgeable and understandable. Each bus would depart about half full. Very efficient system for organizing tour departures on the ship. We never waited more than ten minutes before being directed to our bus. The one complaint I have from the entire cruise experience is related to the tours and, unfortunately, I believe the issue is beyond Regent's control: passengers go on tours they should not take due to physical limitations. We were provided tour descriptions online before the cruise, after we boarded, and each day with the newsletter; all of which made abundantly clear the physical requirements of each tour and the physical limitations that should prevent someone from taking certain tours. On every tour, in my opinion, people were present who should not have been. Certain participants placed unreasonable expectations on the guides due to their limitations. A man fell down stepping off the curb in Lisbon and somehow the guide was implicated? Another guide was rudely told to slow down because a couple couldn't keep up. One guide was told to slow down by a woman who said her back hurts when she climbs stairs. And lastly, a guide was asked to be available at the port to help a couple back to the ship. Very frustrating and my heart goes out to the guides and what they must endure. Regent can't be placed into a position of evaluating each passenger's physical ability before every tour. Passengers need to read the information, readily available via multiple sources, regarding the tours, and be honest about their ability to take the, clearly stated, more physically demanding tours. Again, my only complaint during the entire cruise. Disembarkation was difficult only because we didn't want to leave. The process itself was easy as long as your luggage was outside your door on time and you were listening for your number to be called indicating it was time to disembark. In summary, we had a wonderful and memorable trip and thanks to Regent for performing so incredibly well every step of the way. To perform so well requires outstanding organization, training, quality control, accountability, and teamwork. It was fascinating to watch the team work so well together and deliver so well time and time again. Partly attributable to my sister telling me to prepare to be spoiled and partly because of the price, our expectations were very high yet Regent consistently met or exceeded our expectations. Consequently, we are now hooked and booked an Alaska cruise in 2020 while onboard. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Six months since our last holiday, by May 2019 it was time for a break. I am a firm believer in the HR notion that a break every six months is restorative (if not to ones bank account, at least for the soul). So I looked for a cruise that ... Read More
Six months since our last holiday, by May 2019 it was time for a break. I am a firm believer in the HR notion that a break every six months is restorative (if not to ones bank account, at least for the soul). So I looked for a cruise that would please me and my wife. A bit about us: we are late middle-aged (later 50's, early 60's), one of us still works, and we have done many cruises since 2001. Mostly on Holland America, yet more recently on Seabourn. We very much liked the almost all-inclusive nature of our Seabourn cruises, as well as the smaller ships. In May 2019 Seabourn had an interesting cruise option, yet on that ship the verandah cabin guarantee offered may well have come with the opaque (metal) balcony railings. That is a show-stopper for my wife, who wants to be able to see out her balcony while seated. Seabourn would put us in a balcony with the Plexiglas railing--yet only if we ponied up another $2 grand each. It looked like we would not be cruising after all in May. Happily, searching the usual websites, I found this interesting Regent cruise--a trans-Atlantic, which we like (the days at sea can be quite restful), some interesting ports, a departure from New York, which is only an hours flight from Toronto, and with the airfare and shore excursions included. We also would have a proper balcony in the verandah cabin, with no metal railing blocking the view. All this, including business class air for the transatlantic flight home, for about the same price as Seabourn wanted for the obstructed view balcony. Hmmm, it was time to give Regent a try. Cutting to the chase for any impatient readers, we quite enjoyed our Regent cruise and would return to them. This line is now on our list, along with Seabourn. We would also return to HAL, even though we do like not having to sign for most things, for the right itinerary and pricing. It is nice to have options and choices. We found Regent a well organized operator. Their shore staff met us at Newark airport, and we were escorted to the van (we were the only passengers) provided to take us to the port of Manhattan. Ironically, the drive from the airport took longer than our 1.3 hour flight. It was nice, accordingly, that I did not have to pay for a taxi or limo, and that such ground transportation was included. As we checked in around 2PM, we had missed the rush. On board quickly, we headed to the Verandah for a casual lunch. This was the first of many very good meals on board. Ultimately to our cabin--we had received and accepted an upsell offer for a penthouse. The basic amenity was that the cabin, same size as the verandah cabin but better located, came with a butler, who was excellent! Between the butler and our stewardess, and her assistant, we were very well looked after for the next 15 days. Having never had a butler before, and wondering what we would use him for, now I wonder how we could survive without one! The cabin was a little tight compared with what we are used to. On HAL we get a Neptune Suite, and on Seabourn a regular verandah. Yet the Seabourn ships are newer than this particular ship, Navigator, which is about 20 years old. We found that there was not quite as much drawer space or storage generally, as we have had on Seabourn in the regular verandah cabins--yet we managed to get everything put away. Still, I would not have wanted a room service dinner in the cabin. Again, other than having the daily snacks which the butler brought, it was a tad tight for dining. We were not impressed with the lifeboat drill. Held partly inside, and then being taken out to the boat deck was superfluous, as the boats you were shown at the drill may well not be the boat to which you would be assigned when you gather in the event of an emergency. In my view this is not well thought out. Either do the entire drill outside, or inside. I would also think specific lifeboats should be assigned per cabin, so everyone knows exactly where to go in case of an emergency. Other lines do this in a more organized fashion. We had a little difficulty in getting the cabin stocked with my wife's favourite Vodka, Chopin, a potato-based vodka. A substitute was provided, and Chopin was available in the bars. Ultimately, our butler scrounged us a bottle for the cabin. Unfortunately, we were told that Chopin was no longer to be provided on Regent once current inventory was finished. Too bad, as it is an excellent luxury brand. The included/available Scotches were also not quite top drawer. I mean, seriously, Johnny Walker Red? Yes, they had Black, Chivas Regal (my daily tipple), and some single malts. Yet for a luxury cruise line, at a minimum 12 year old single malts (not just one, but a choice of several) should be included, and frankly, they should provide 15 year old Scotch without a surcharge. In addition to most friendly, warm, welcoming, and personable cabin staff, the same could be said about all the bar staff. They were great. It was nice to be seated, and ones regular drink brought around without having to say a word. Kudos to them for fostering a welcoming and clubby atmosphere. The food quality was truly excellent--and we are foodies. It was the best we have experienced on any cruise. Being fair, HAL provides in our experience very good Banquet style meals. Seabourn provides very good meals as well, just not a lot of variety at times, and at times, overly salted. Regent's food was not overly salted, yet was well seasoned. There was also plenty of variety at lunch, and especially at dinner in the main restaurant. Some of the "always available" dinner items included genuine whole Dover Sole, which would be filleted table-side--a pleasure to watch. We found the food prepared "a la minute", and was an example of fine dining. Not every dish was a success, but the effort was clearly present. We were surprised that someone on the cruise after ours, a Veterans charter, did not enjoy the food. Yet that may have been because it was a charter. We enjoyed the dining room or the upstairs casual restaurant which becomes an Italian restaurant at night. Happily, it was not a buffet, unless one wanted to go up and select items. We much preferred the lovely Italian servers bringing us our meal. We also enjoyed two meals in the steakhouse. We found the personnel there most welcoming and accommodating, too. The beef was very good. Yet, as I have a great local butcher, and enjoy making a BBQ during decent weather, unlike some I do not get all excited about a steakhouse! Service in the dining room, however, was not quite as good as was the food. Some of the servers were great: warm, friendly, yet also competent. Over 15 days there can be one or two food items that are not to ones taste--the better wait staff knew to check and to quickly rectify the situation. Alas, not all of the servers fit into that category. We are used to on HAL our fixed table at 8PM, where we build a rapport with the same team of waiter, assistant waiter, and wine waiter over the cruise. While we do appreciate the flexibility of open seating available on smaller ships, one sacrifices, to some extent, that personal rapport which can, if one is lucky (and we have always had good luck on HAL in that regard), develop between server and customer. The challenge for Regent and Seabourn is to imbue their wait staff with the feeling that, even if for one night, each passenger is "their" passenger, and the goal should be to make the evening special, for each guest. Not easy to accomplish, but worth aiming for. In any case on this cruise we had a word with hotel management about some initial service issues, and happily, things improved. The ports included Bermuda, and the shore excursions, also included, were very good. Unfortunately, a couple of the afternoon tours were cancelled. As I get up early most weekday mornings, the last thing I want to do on any cruise is get up early to go on tour. I prefer a leisurely morning. In most European ports, Regent did offer afternoon tours, and again, we enjoyed them. We found the laundry to be expensive, albeit thankfully we were using "Monopoly money" (our ship-board credits) for that. Seabourn offers laundry at $50 for as much as one can stuff into a bag. Regent should follow that example. If I did not have sufficient credits, the cost of laundry would be a factor worth considering, along with the other factors such as included shore excursions, included air-fare, etc. There are, it seems, always trade-offs to be made. The lectures were in our view poorly timed. The fellow who spoke at 10 AM I would have preferred hearing in the afternoon, and I could have skipped the afternoon guy who talked about photography. The onboard shows were decent, although the layout of the theatre makes it hard to find an unobstructed view unless you arrive early. Some of the specialty performers were excellent! The piano bar was ok. While the piano player could play, he often mangled the lyrics. A little more practice to make perfect may help. Bar staff there, however, were great. The demographics of this cruise included, in our view, a somewhat older crowd. That made us feel comparatively younger (not a bad thing!). Still, we met a few folk to, on occasion, have a drink with. People were quite pleasant for the most part. We were surprised that the dress code on Regent was specified as "elegant-casual" each night. Apparently for cruises of 15 days or less, there are no formal-optional nights. I had brought a couple of ties, yet never wore one. In the main dining room, however, most men did wear a sports-jacket or the ubiquitous navy blazer. People were for the most part indeed elegantly casual. We flew home on May 30, and have to say that Amsterdam's airport is very disorganized. I would also warn folks not to connect through London-Heathrow, as the security and other line ups are horrendous. In hindsight, I would have tried for a non-stop flight which, as we all know, is the best bet. Generally, and if the price is right, we would definitely return to Regent. Yet right now they seem to be charging nearly $1,000.00 per person per day. That is far more than what we paid for this cruise. So, if one can afford it, go for it--yet it pays to shop around. Read Less
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise