First cruise with Regent and had read good reviews so was looking forward to the experience. The itinerary looked great with a port stop each day and the all-inclusive offer was also appealing.
It is a great bonus that Regent offer a nights pre cruise hotel accommodation and transfer to the ship as part of their package. Whilst the hotel was adequate and a city transfer was offered it was a long way short of the advertised “luxury hotel” promoted on the Regent web site as the Rome pre cruise hotel.
Pre boarding was quick and efficient. On embarking the ship looked impressive with its lovely glass lift. The welcoming mouthful of champagne was adequate as it would be difficult to manage carry-on luggage as well as a champagne flute whilst negotiating the lift etc. Plus we had a bottle of champagne on ice waiting in our cabin.
Our balcony cabin was clean roomy and with plenty of storage and wardrobe space. My only negative was the valance which was slightly soiled and gold in colour and looked out dated and out of place with the more simple lines of the rest of the décor.
The excursions (included) were excellent with small groups and really enjoyed them all. The system of getting guests onto their various tour buses seem to run smoothly and efficiently. My only comment would be that some of the tour guides could have been a little more mindful of the heavy rain conditions. The guide insisted we all disembark the bus even though it was extremely heavy rain and climb the spiral stairs to the look out at the top of the village. The water running down the stairs was like a river and a man in front of me fell on the wet slippery paving. This was dangerous and we could have waited 5-10 minutes for the really heavy rain to pass without jeopardising our tour program.
The restaurants were excellent and particularly enjoyed the specialty restaurants. We dined twice at Signatures, Prime 7 and Sette Mari and all were great. It was always a special treat as we sailed out of port each evening to try a different pre-dinner cocktail in Horizon Lounge. Due to the weather most guests dined inside at La Veranda which made the indoor seating area quite full and often made it difficult to find a free table for breakfast and lunch. The buffet area could do with some re designing as it was often very congested.
I attended a gym class most days and all were excellent.
We may have been one of the last to disembark but disembarkation was a little under whelming. There was no one to say goodbye or wish us well as we left the ship.
When we disembarked our Seabourn cruise in 2012, the captain and all the officers were there to farewell us which was a nice touch.
Having only Seabourn to compare to I would say Seabourn was superior to Regent in service and attention to detail. No one on Regent ever called us by name or escorted us to our table. This was not essential to us but very noticeable compared to Seabourn. I did enjoy the more choice in restaurant options available on Regent and the more friendly casual environment was appealing to us.
We encounted some very bad weather but the Captain was very professional in keeping us informed. Given the wind speed and rough seas the ship seemed to handle the conditions extremely well.
Some guests were critical of the Captains decision to by- pass Valencia due to bad weather. Whilst it was disappointing, I would never question the Captains decision when it comes to the safety and comfort of both passengers and the ship.
Yes I would cruise on Regent again.