We chose this cruise partly because of the reviews and partly because it went to a few places that we have not been before.
First, the good:
They had an excellent lecturer aboard and I thought his presentation was phenomenal.
They had one great restaurant: Chartreuse, for French, but you can only book it once.
The suite was adequate, lots of drawer space. The seating area could be partitioned off with curtains, so it could be considered an actual suite.
Decor is very dark with low ceilings. I am 5’6” and could place my whole hand on the ceiling.
Now the negative:
We have cruised before with Seabourn and Silverseas. This did not compare to those lines in any way.
The main issue is the overall experience:
We felt like cattle.
Like many other luxury lines, they include the tours in your price, but unlike others our experience, they make no attempt to control the quality of the tours. On Silverseas, we had a crew/staff member on every bus and on every tour.
If something went wrong, that person was able to manage it or intervene.
Regent makes no effort to even ask for reviews of the tours.
The most obnoxious part was the tour departures:
They ask you to line up early on board to turn in your tour ticket and get a bus number. There are a lot of buses on a 700 guest cruise... then you wait and wait in the very dark “Constellation Lounge” until your bus is called. Often twice a day. You spend a very long time hanging out in this lounge with staff repeating the same thing over and over...
Then you line up to offload and get on the buses.
I do not remember any waits or lines for the tours on with either Silverseas or Seabourn.
Finally, the food is just ok. They rely heavily on buffets. Their returning customers seemed happy with that. There was exceent restaurant, Chartreuse. The other two were just OK.
There seemed to be a dichotomy of opinion between people who cruised with them often and the newcomers to Regent. The returning customers thought it was just the best experience, and the newcomers were talking mutiny.
Our experience was exactly what we wanted to avoid on a cruise. Perhaps it is caused by the move back to larger ships. It has put us off cruising for the future.
One of the reasons we chose Regent was because of the glowing reviews.
Please don’t be fooled.
Apart for the very dark decor and low ceilings, I have no complaints about the “suite”
It had lots of drawer space and the seating area could be closed off from the bed area.
It did not, however, come with a butler. Not a deal killer for us, but the similarity priced smaller boats of Seabourn and Silverseas did provide butler service for our suites.
Regent does not seem to care much about details. They rely on buffet service too much, and certainly more than Seabourn or Silverseas, and the reall issue for us was their reliance on cattle call line ups to turn in tickets and sit and hang out in their dark “
ConstellationLounge” theater until your bus is calledfor your mediocre “included” tours.
They don’t send crew on the buses or tours so they don’t seem to care what that experience is like for their clients. We went on Silverseas recently and they had crew on every tour....if something went wrong, the crew was empowered to act. And did.