Seven Seas Grandeur Review

-- / 5.0
Editor Rating
20 reviews

Disappointing for a luxury line

Review for the Panama Canal & Central America Cruise on Seven Seas Grandeur
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awacsdaddy
10+ Cruises • Age 70s

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Sail Date: Jan 2024
Cabin: Deluxe Veranda Suite

The Grandeur was our first experience sailing on a Regent ship. When deciding upon the cruise line for our long-awaited transit of the Panama Canal, we selected Regent because had heard good things and we thought it would be fun to try a brand new ship. We were disappointed. The ship itself is a marvel, better than other luxury lines we have sailed. The public spaces are large and inviting. The artwork is museum worthy. But the two high points on any cruise should be the excursions and the food, and these fell short.

Regent advertises ‘free unlimited shore excursions’, but the claim is misleading. Only one excursion per port could be booked. Even with 14 hours in port, the excursions were all bunched into a short time window, making it impossible to book more than one. And the excursions themselves felt perfunctory, with few highlights.

The food was largely uninspired. Some dishes were excellent, but they were the exception. A few things we tried bordered on inedible. Escargot served in pastry shells sounded promising, but the shells resembled cardboard and the escargot inside was watery and tasteless. Even a bone-in ribeye was no better than what would be served in a chain steakhouse. We know the kitchen is capable of doing better because we enjoyed a rack of lamb that was truly exceptional. On balance, the food was as good as what competitors serve, but it did not match our expectations.

Cabin Review

Deluxe Veranda Suite

Overall the cabin was comfortable and met our needs. The shower was the best we have experienced on a cruise ship. However, there were some design issues. When the door to the bathroom was open, it was impossible to enter the room from the hall without having the doors bang into each other. This led to fingers getting mashed on more than one occasion. And as noted in the main review, either the pocket door to the closet should have a latch, or the light inside the closet should have a switch allowing it to be turned off so rolling seas don't cause the door to open during the night. Having a light switch on and off during the night is quite annoying.

Port Reviews

Cabo San Lucas

Having never done sportfishing, I elected to skip the free excursions offered by Regent and selected an extra cost option to spend 5 hours on a fishing boat looking for game fish. It was the worst excursion I have ever experienced. Four of us were put on a small boat with a captain and his mate. Very little English was spoken, which might have been OK, but there was no effort to explain any part of the experience to us. We were never told what kind of fish we were looking for, what kinds of lures were being used or why, what techniques we might employ to improve our chances of catching fish, or how to reel one in if we actually hooked it. We spent 5 long hours motoring through rough water wondering what was going on. A pure waste.

Panama Canal

A daylight transit of the Panama Canal was the reason we selected this cruise, and it did not disappoint. The full transit took nearly 10 hours and running commentary was broadcast over the ship's speakers. But I would have preferred doing the transit on a different ship. I am used to sailing on ships with access to the bow. I did not realize until after boarding the Grandeur that there is no public place where one can stand on the bow and look forward without being behind a window. Streaks on the window diminished the viewing experience.

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