Cruised in December 2019, departing n arriving Singapore (14-days) on the Regent SS Voyager. Our family comprised 6 adults - several of us are veteran luxury cruisers, one of us is a first-timer.
We had heard good things about Regent SS, and decided to give the Voyager a try. My most recent luxury cruise was on the Seabourn Encore, so I’ll use that as a reference point for my review of the Voyager.
Overall Ship design
The ship in general is well-designed, though dated in parts.
The Concierge Suite we had was attractive, functional and comfortable. Linen was superb, aircon sufficiently cold. Shower water pressure was on the weak side of adequate.
Toiletries were from L’Occitane. I prefer the Molton Brown range offered in the Encore, but that’s a personal thing.No comb nor toothbrush/paste was provided - I’m not sure if housekeeping would have provided gratis if I had asked, as I’d brought my own. Still.
Nice as the Regent is, the Seabourne Encore is a notch higher in the styling & design department - in their public areas as well as the suites.
Getting seated in Compass Rose was always efficient and prompt. The menu there is excellent. Sides for each dish and accompanying sauces were available separately. Healthy options were available as well (recommended by the Canyon Ranch Spa). Wines were decent to excellent. I found the food to be consistently good, better than the cuisine I enjoyed on the Encore.
I routinely ate lunch on the pool deck, preferring to eat and chill rather than sit in a restaurant for an hour or more. The burger and hot dog counter was always a popular spot, as was the ice-cream section.
The cafe on Deck 5, Coffee Connection, was very popular and we often could not find seats there, though it wasn’t much trouble to take away and sit elsewhere but nearby. The coffee was passable but the pastries, cookies and fresh fruit were always delicious.
The included tours were not great, but I attributed it more to the ports of call rather than to Regent itself. There was nothing compelling to see nor do in several of the stops. We had to miss Koh Samui due to bad weather.
At the overnight dock at Laem Chabang, we decided to bus to Pattaya instead of Bangkok along with everyone else. We stayed overnight at the Hilton in Pattaya. Bangkok was a 120-minute bus-ride away, Pattaya only a half-hour. That was a good decision as we got to enjoy a change of scenery and cuisine. We felt the extra expense was worth the while.
The entertainment on the ship was good, though I’m not a great fan of cruise-ship cabaret-type shows. But that’s just me. The musical performers in the various lounges were very good.
The free laundry located on every floor was helpful, and it never seemed too crowded. The library was adequate as well, though I’d brought my own e-books. Good range of movies in the suite TV.
Wifi was adequate, though it occasionally dropped off to zero at points along the cruise. Our package (free) allowed for 4 devices, but I’m not sure if this is offered to all suite classes.
Oh, good grief…. that infernal card-key. My wife and I had a running competition to see who had the higher number of tries to unlock the suite door. I won with 9 tries. And no, I didn’t keep the card key with my phone or other electronic devices. Changing the card didn’t help.
My main gripe (and it’s a big one) is not the food quality but the food service. Food quality is subjective; service is not.
I’m not picky about being waited on. I want my food to come without flourish and fanfare. But certain basics are non-negotiable - particularly when Regent charges a premium for it.
Orders were mislaid or forgotten, wrong dishes were delivered, or delivered very late…etc. This happened at every single food outlet (including Prime7), and at almost every meal.
We never got through a single meal without something going wrong. This sad experience was shared by numerous passengers we chatted with.
The service staff was always friendly and warm - so I attribute the faux-pax to bad training and/or inexperience. I’m sure the staff were trying their best, but the problem seemed to be systemic. I would not accept this level of service from ANY restaurant, and am disappointed to have had to accept it from Regent.
Staff on deck were great, always ready to offer towels and water. The pool deck often got crowded though, especially on sea days.
We had a great time on the cruise, all things considered.
Will I cruise Regent SS again? Perhaps when I hear that the food service has improved, or if the prices drop significantly, or after the next upgrade.
Stayed the night at Pattaya. Enjoyable.
Did some shopping in downtown HCM.