We arrived 2 days early for our Alaskan cruise from Vancouver and stayed at the Fairmont Waterfront. Our luggage was taken across the street by hotel staff and we next found it in our suite. Although we had the smallest ac- accommodations on the ship, we found our suite very comfortable and roomy with a nice balcony. The suite has a rather large bathroom with 1 sink and tub over shower and Aveda amenities. The closet is large and there is more than enough space for our belongings. Our stewardess appeared to be new but was very helpful. She did not answer the 2 pages we did but we figured she did not know how to work the system as she often had to "ask her supervisor" when we asked her for something. Each cabin is able to order 2 large bottles of liquor and we found a bottle of champagne awaiting us too.
The first afternoon of our cruise we were locked out on our balcony and eventually someone came out a few cabins away and called to report it. Un-fortunately no one ever came to get us and an hour later after feeling very panicky and seeing no one, our neighbor came out and we passed our key over the partition and he let us in . Although we spent another half hour in our cabin, no one ever came. We found the food on the ship to be very good and wine was served with the dinner. We (my husband and I) were traveling alone and generally sat at tables for two. Because this was a cruise with many children most people were traveling with their families or friends so we never got to sit with any one else at meals. In addition, there were few activities for adults. We were looking forward to playing bridge, at least on the 2 sea days. Bridge preparations consisted of a basket with 4 decks of cards in a drafty corridor with a sign on it for bridge. There was no one in charge. Speakers were limited to the naturalist and the photographer. There was trivial pursuit and bingo 3 times. Unfortunately, until we went on our 4 day Denali extension, we had little opportunity to meet anyone although we are very sociable people. There was a very good library and Dvd collection on board as well as movies every day.
We went to the French restaurant once and found it to be excellent as was the service. The buffet restaurant Veranda during the day became an Italian steak house at night. It was also excellent. We found the service there to be much better than the main dining room. Dining room service was spotty and often rather frantic. There are two very nice shops on board with very lovely merchandise as well as a casino.
The embarking and disembarking were very smooth. We continued with the Denali extension organized by the ship. That was really outstanding. The hotels ranged from good to excellent and the tour was well organized with a great tour director and driver. Here we met some very interesting people. We realized what we had been missing on the ship as there was no way for us to interact with anyone.
We found the staff to range from mostly impersonal to a few such as the maitre d in the restaurant who stood out as excellent. We have now been on 17 cruises, most of which were on Crystal. All in all, we felt disappointed that there were so few activities, there were no well-known speakers, and the service and entertainment were just mediocre aside from the ensemble dancers who were very good. We were offered a credit on another cruise due to our un-fortunate experience the first day which seemed very fair on Regent's part. However, we will probably not take advantage of it.
I forgot to mention that we did take the shore excursion by catamaran to Tracy Arm and it was outstanding.