Regent Seven Seas is known as the world’s most luxurious “all inclusive” cruise company. To many travellers, “all inclusive” stirs up thoughts of endless buffets (with recycled food items throughout the day), hordes of people and so on. All in the name of research, I tried out a mini cruise onboard Regent Seven Seas’ Voyager – from Livorno to Corfu. Would this be three nights of bliss or drama on the Seven Seas?
The eight Voyager Suites have a separate bedroom, living room with TV/DVD player, walk-in closet, dining area, large, marble-clad bathroom with tub and separate shower enclosure. The six Seven Seas Suites are spacious, and have large balconies. There are another four smaller Seven Seas Suites with balconies that are quite a bit smaller.
The 64 Penthouse Suites have a sleeping area with dressing table and adjacent lounge area, walk-in closet, and bathroom with tub, washbasin, separate shower enclosure, and toilet.
The 29 Horizon Suites overlook the ship’s stern and have a good-sized balcony.
All other cabins, including my Concierge Suite, have twin beds that can convert to a queen-sized bed, small walk-in closet, marble-lined bathroom with combination tub/shower, vanity desk, hairdryer, TV/DVD player, and refrigerator. In these suites, the sleeping area is separated by partial room dividers.
As noted, every single cabin, or "suite", as they call it here at Regent, has a private balcony with unobstructed view to the, well, Seven Seas and the horizon. Arriving in our Concierge Suite, I was immediately drawn to the view - sitting down and sipping a glass of Champagne on your own private balcony felt utterly luxurious. And when the first bottle was emptied, we simply called for another one (remember, it's included...).
The suite was nicely appointed and very well kept (I thought that it must have gone through some soft refurbishments). At 28 sq.m., it also felt much more like a hotel room than a cabin on a ship. A king size bed took up a lot of the space - but there was still room for a separate sitting area (sofa and sofa table) with a large flatscreen television - and then of course access to the aforementioned balcony.
I was impressed with the bathroom - nicely kitted out in marble, it offered all the amenities of a luxury hotel room, including ample supplies of L'Occitane amenities.
Although I could very well have spent all day in my suite, calling for limitless bottles of Champagne, I, of course, had to check up on all the other facilities onboard. What struck me was the feeling of onboard - not in the sense that the ship felt big, because it didnt - but more in the sense that, at no point, did it feel crowded. Heading to the ship's pool deck, even on a sunny, warm day (where most passengers would be expected to hang out up here), I noticed that it felt calm and relaxed.
There are countless activities to take part in onboard, including lectures, spa treatments (these do come at an extra), shopping (although thankfully, there's not much in the way of shops, in all honesty). However, and obviously, excursions to landbased sights are a highlight, and again, they are all included.
Another highlight are the food and beverage outlets onboard; also these are all included (yes, also the "specialty restaurants").
There are four restaurants, and all are operated on an open-seating basis, so that you can sit with whom you want.
The main dining room, the 570-seat Compass Rose Restaurant, has a light, fresh decor, while the 120-seat supper club, Signatures, is directed and staffed by chefs wearing the white toque and Blue Riband of Le Cordon Bleu in Paris.
Dinner at Latitudes consists of a set menu, the only choice being the main course, which is fish or meat.
Prime 7 is a classic American steakhouse, and I had one of the best steaks of my entire life here - I am not exaggerating.
For more casual meals, La Veranda is a good option (with outdoor seating too). Coffee Connection offers coffees and pastries throughout the day.
You can also choose to dine in your cabin - as we did once. There is a 24-hour room service menu, and, during regular dinner hours, you can choose from the full dining room menu, and be served course by course.
When we didn't go on the excursions or gorged down on gourmet food there was plenty to do onboard. I was honestly quite impressed with the entertainment onboard; the show lounge, Constellation, is home to a small troupe of singers and dancers doing shows (of a much higher quality than I'd expected).
While the pool is too small for swimming, I found that the gym in the Canyon Ranch SpaClub offered quite an extensive health spa with gymnasium (plenty of cardio-vascular equipment) and aerobics room. There's also a beauty salon, and separate changing, sauna and steam rooms.