First impressions were very positive. Smooth embarkation and the welcome glass of champagne was gratefully received! Having read comments posted previously our first port of call once on board was to the gym to book into classes for the next day. Sailaway was quiet compared to other cruises I have been on, but I put this down to folk being in their cabins enjoying the champagne! Age profile for this cruise was definitely retired plus, which I knew would be the case prior to booking. At times I felt like an extra in Cocoon!but having said that I have never met so many determined,interesting and vibrant people. Zip lining with a group all in their seventies is one highlight! As a first time Regent cruiser I came onboard with high expectations and these were delivered. We particularly enjoyed the all inclusive aspect - not having to sign for every drink etc. Our $500 onboard credit was difficult to spend, but we managed! There is vibration at times, but she is a small ship and this is inevitable. It didn't disturb me or ruin my enjoyment in any way.
The Panama Canal crossing was amazing. The deck party in Acupulco is something I will never forget - what a back drop! Sailing into San Francisco under the Golden Gate Bridge shrouded in mist at 5.30 in the morning was magical and a fitting end to what was a brilliant cruise. Would I cruise with Regent again - yes definitely!
Excursions: There has been much debate now that these are included in the overall price. Those we went on were all good, some better than others, but all good. The quality of the guides did vary but all the trips were enjoyable. Beach horse riding in Cabo San Lucas,Mexico was breathtaking. Zip lining in Puerto Vallarta hilarious, mountain biking in Huatulco surreal. The lengths they went to to ensure our safety (quad bike out rider complete with flag, stopping the traffic)were first class
Dining: Anytime anywhere dining is a new concept for us. I enjoyed the flexibility of choosing to dine with random people, friends we made on board or just as a couple. At times it did feel a bit like speed dating - what's your name, where do you come from, do you have children etc. etc. but we both enjoy meeting new people and are good talkers (and listeners!) La Veranda- We used this mainly for Breakfast opting to sit outside. The caviar and champagne each Sunday was great. I am not a lover of buffet style dining so we only had one evening meal here and that was so that we could power through to get to the show. We found it almost impossible to do this most nights once we got chatting! Compass Rose - No complaints. Food, wine and service were both first class and fully met my expectations. Prime 7 - Have to admit I am not a fan. The layout is cramped and it is an odd shape. The tables are too small and the menus are so large in size you can hardly look at them once your chair has been pushed in! The food was good, but not significantly better than in Compass Rose. We dined there on three occasions and I was surprised that on a 20 night cruise the menu did not vary. Pool Grill - This was very popular and excellent quality with plenty of choice. Room service - Used this for breakfast and as we had opted for a Butler suite it was delivered with a flourish
Butler service: To be honest we under utilised our Butler. The afternoon canape selection was great to start with but there is only so much you can eat!
Entertainment: I never expect too much from a cruise so I was pleased with what was on offer. One highlight was meeting Bob Wilber and his wife who were fellow guests onboard. Bob it turned out is quite famous in Jazz circles and he performed a couple of sets with the Regent Band - who I have to say were excellent. Greg the flamenco fusion guitarist was also very good.The lectures we attended were all good quality and well received. I was surprised at how much choice and variety was available. Although we did not participate in any of the deck games we enjoyed watching while sunbathing on a lounger sipping a cocktail! Our cruise director Paul was very professional.
Service: First class in all areas. Very attentive bar staff and pool waiters. I particularly noticed how attentive they were to the older passengers with mobility problems. Nothing was too much trouble and assistance was offered in a genuine caring manner. The valet parking service for the mobility scooters used to make me chuckle every time I saw one of the waiters zoom off down the restaurant!
Atmosphere: This is a very friendly ship. The Captain John McNeil is very personable and the entire crew give the impression of being happy.