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Sail Date: August 2019
We sailed from Amsterdam to New York. The ship was great. It is small which I liked but it would have been nice to have more public space with more comfortable chairs. The remodel they did in June was lovely but more focused on design ... Read More
We sailed from Amsterdam to New York. The ship was great. It is small which I liked but it would have been nice to have more public space with more comfortable chairs. The remodel they did in June was lovely but more focused on design instead of comfort. Our room was lovely and was in a great location. I LOVED the walk-in closet and bathroom. Room Service food service was EXCELLENT...always on time or early! Our Room Stewards were very good. The dining room was lovely and food was very good. Our itinerary was very good and the captain and crew were focused on our safety by skipping one port to avoid a storm. Most of the entertainment was very good. Some of the singers were "weak" but they sure gave it a lot of effort. Cruise Director Ray was a real showman and a wonderful entertainer with a fabulous voice! Piano man, Clive, was delightful. He should have been in a bigger lounge though. Free access to the Internet was GREAT! The daily schedule of activities was a bit repetitive...same activities every day. And you better get to the games at least 15 min early or they won't let you play! The people who ran the games were the singers and dancers. Some were great but most didn't like running the games and it showed. Most of the shore excursions were very good but we did not like waiting in the lounge for the tour tickets. This could have been handled much better. The enrichment lecturers on arctic animals and the history of the North Atlantic were interesting but there were no programs about any of the port destinations. All port info was on the website and there was no one on the ship to ask questions about the ports. And there was no info on the website that free shuttles would be available in the ports. This was disappointing. Our flights that Regent booked for us to Amsterdam were great and on time but when we arrived in Amsterdam, no one from Regent was there to meet us. We only had 4 hours to get to the ship and this was very unsettling to have no one there to take care of us. The phone numbers I had on our documents to call were in Florida and Belgium! After 1 1/2 hours and the help of the Airport Information Desk, we finally got a Regent agent to come see us and they informed us we were not on their list. I had them check if we were on the ship and thankfully, they said yes, but we would have to pay to get to the ship. We booked our flights thru Regent so transfers were included but they said NO. They got us an Uber and charged $200 to our room. We got on the ship by 4pm which was a bit late, but we made it as the ship sailed at 5pm. After contacting our travel agent and complaining to Destinations team, we did get a refund but no apology from Regent for not meeting us. Then halfway thru the trip, Destinations sent us a form to fill out about our flights home and true to form, they told us we had no transfers....they had been cancelled 4 months BEFORE we booked the cruise! Wouldn't you think they would have re-checked this after we had a problem arriving? But no. So after contacting our travel agent again and complaining to the Cruise Consultant, we were informed the next day that we did have transfers and we finally got a lame apology for being left at the airport (only 2 weeks after the fact!). And if that wasn't enough, the Destinations manager told us to de-book a shore excursion that required a 15 min walk to the tour boat because my husband needed a little extra time to walk the distance. No accommodation from them at all. I told them we would just work it out. In Nova Scotia, I went and talked to the local tour people on the dock and they were very kind and helped my husband get an early start on the walk to the tour boat. Thank God for the friendly and welcoming Canadians! We enjoyed the boat tour a lot but met another lady who had the same experience as we did, and her husband didn't take the tour. She kept saying he would have really enjoyed it if only the Destinations dept was more accommodating and kind. By the way, we were surprised when people in wheel chairs and people with crutches were on our tour! When we got off the ship in New York, our assigned bus driver did not know which airlines were at which terminals at La Guardia. Regent agents had to be called to get the info. Then when we got to the airport (which was torn up under construction), the driver could not find the way to the terminal that the majority of the passengers needed. After two trips around the airport, a man got on and told us we would all have to get off and take a shuttle bus to our terminal and we would have to "lug" our luggage with us! Needless to say, no one was happy and some of the passengers vehemently told the driver to "Find our Terminal" or get us a taxi! A policeman finally came and directed the driver to our terminal. So as you can see, just about everything the Destinations team organized was a disaster for us! Because of all the trouble we had with the Destinations team, we did not book another cruise on Regent as we had planned to do during the voyage. Their rudeness and lack of customer service and lousy organization really turned us off. Also we felt that the ship's staff really catered to returning passengers and the 12 of us who were on Regent for the first time were not a priority. We did like the all inclusiveness of the cruise so we will look for another cruise line (maybe Viking), who will hopefully have a Destinations Team that will be more organized, accommodating and friendly. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My husband and I just finished 9 days on the Regent Navigator, a fund-raising private charter cruise sponsored by the WWII Museum in New Orleans. The trip was in honor of the 75th DDAY Normandy invasion commemoration, and its veterans, ... Read More
My husband and I just finished 9 days on the Regent Navigator, a fund-raising private charter cruise sponsored by the WWII Museum in New Orleans. The trip was in honor of the 75th DDAY Normandy invasion commemoration, and its veterans, and the excursions were primarily focussed on historic locations along the route and culminated in attendance of the DDAY ceremonies at the American Cemetery near Omaha Beach. My review rating of 3/5 is only about the ship experience itself, compared with other mostly luxury lines I have cruised with before (Seabourn (SB), Silversea (SS), Hapag-Lloyd (HL), and Crystal, plus Oceania, and also compared with a prior, non-charter cruise we had taken on the Regent Voyager several years ago. I was informed in advance by a Regent expert that the facilities, food and crew on Regent charters would be the same quality as one experiences on non-charter cruises, so this gave me a chance to resample Regent after several years of absence to give them another chance, though my primary reason for booking was the special event. Short summary: Overall I give the ship, food and crew a 3.4 rating overall and would not be tempted to book more cruises with Regent absent unusual circumstances. Again, this is my rating only for the ship, food and crew, not the customized entertainment and excursion agenda, as we did not have traditional stage “entertainment” as is usual on board Regent (BTW the topical events on and off ship organized by the WWII museum were very good, no regrets there, 5/5, though the ceremonies on DDAY involved very tiring long lines, neither Regent's nor WW2 Museum's fault). Food quality, service, and ship condition were good enough, though with flaws, i.e., like several years ago. Food on SB and SS previously was better, and it was much better on HL (though the latter also charges a higher per diem). Details: SHIP, ambience and suite: uncrowded and comfortable, well-maintained and clean in general, but the ship is showing its age a bit. All the furniture (the bed, couches, loungers, etc.) were much more comfortable and softer (important for those of us with musculoskeletal problems) than on SB. We were in a basic deluxe window suite (no veranda) on deck 5, aft. It had around 300 sq feet including a spacious walk-in closet, mini-fridge (all-inclusive and customizable), couch, desk area, vanity table, and bathroom with separate shower and bathtub areas with two nice grab bars and a rubber mat. Moderate ship/structure negatives were: 1. Initially we had brown water and low water pressure during high demand periods (but this was fixed with some pipe and filter work within 24 hours of reporting it). Per other reviews, this has happened before in recent months 2. The bathtub plug did not work (a common problem in my travels, so I used my portable rubber bathtub plug) 3. No bedside charger (only available at the desk and vanity). 4. The decor is a bit dated and carpeting is faded or slightly spotted 5. The desk area had no storage above or below it other than 1 small middle drawer (space was occupied by the fridge, glassware storage, and a flat-screen on the wall), though there was some room on top. TV had nice resolution, with basic dining venue menus available, though it did not display the MDR (Compass Rose) daily specials (only the “always available” options), and excursions listed were inaccurate Unfortunately the destinations descriptions and enrichment lecture recordings ran in a loop rather than being available for on-demand selection, like they were on other lines 6. Bath towels in our suite were thin and scratchy the first few days (definitely not luxury, as hey were old and worn out), then some got softer and fluffier. 7. Although our cabin was thankfully quiet and peaceful, with no vibrations, the main auditorium area (called the Seven Seas Lounge) often had loud vibration you could not miss during presentations. 8. There is also no large, dedicated forward outdoor observation area like on SB (here, you had to stand on the mini-golf lawn). 9. Internet was slow most of the time, impossible at others, but this is just like on all other lines I have been on, and (if not on a charter like this one where internet was included), quoted prices were high. 10. DH also did not like that the only two hot tubs were right near the pool, i.e., none were in a more private area like SB offers, and access was already closed early in the evening, before it even got dark, so there was no option for post-dinner soaks at sunset. FOOD: We had a few good, properly prepared meals (lamb dish in the small Prime 7 venue, and a good spare rib BBQ over noodles in MDR). We also had good croissants (though not as good as on SB) and generally good breads with variety (except in the Italian venue in the evening) . The food was mostly disappointing, though there were many choices, e.g., there were “always available” options to accommodate a variety of basic American taste combinations. Salmon entrees are hard to ruin, but they managed to do so in the MDR, Compass Rose. Most food was overcooked, e.g., ordering something medium meant it would arrive well-done. Breakfast meat and cheese selections were mundane, but morning bacon was always very good. The all-day coffee bar was self-serve push-button style, like on Oceania and Holland America, and was neither luxurious nor good anywhere. Desserts were no better than several years ago, and what they described as “cream” parts tasted more like Cool Whip than real whipped cream). Cookies at the cafe and cafeteria venue (La Veranda) were always the same sugar-free or regular basics, and were not very tasty, with no change for 9 nights. The evening Italian venue (buffet plus ordered entree) meal, was unremarkable. Hamburgers and hot dogs at the pool grill and room service were overcooked. The final insult was the “special farewell dinner” that was advertised to pax by the CD during the day, so the MDR got packed and was so full we were even turned away, so came back an hour later. It turned out to just be a labor-saving 3 course dinner with 3 fixed entree choices of fish, surf and turf, or vegetarian. We ordered the surf and turf and despite sawing away with great strength, I could barely cut, much less chew, the rubbery pieces of freezer-tasting disgusting old stuff they called lobster tail. Entrees also arrived cold, with oil around the potato and veggies already globbing up into clumps. I rarely send food with animal protein back, but I did here. Unlike on other lines (SB, HL), where we gravitated to enjoying a luxury lunch on board that surpassed venues portside, on this ship I would have made a point of eating off the ship as often as possible for lunch and dinner. SERVICE: Our cabin stewardess was a fast learner, and with her less bright male assistant, did a good job cleaning and meeting our limited customization requests in a timely manner, as long as we spelled everything out (so we had no service surprises or initiative from her, but she was good at following instructions). I still do not understand why hard, unripe fruit was mindlessly brought to the suite (bananas and apples are ready to eat, but what do you do with a rock-hard unripe plum or pear on a short cruise?) Very important was that the Do Not Disturb sign was always respected. Laundry came back the same day, unfortunately much of it shrunk as personnel likely did not always follow the international standardized laundry tag washing and drying instructions. Many clothing items that had been washed on other cruise lines without problems, shrank here, despite no weight gain. Food venue crew were mostly Filipino, who definitely smiled a lot, but who seemed inadequately trained for “luxury” service. Most annoying (beyond irritating fiascos with major wine service delays and comprehension barriers) was that most had an unfortunate habit of incessantly interrupting dining conversations, just as they did several years ago (I had forgotten about it until now). They would charge up to the table determined to recite their descriptions of food items or to ask questions, without pauses or regard for whether people were mid-sentence or had just put food into their mouths, and with no apologies for interrupting. They just needed to get their speeches over with and move on. I really appreciate the subtleness of good waiters on HL or SB more, when compared with most of these waiters and waitresses. Though they were almost always hard-working, because they were understaffed (e.g., tables in venues were often uncleared or unset for more guests to sit down), I did not find them to be any better than on mainstream Holland America. I usually have better and more consistent service at Applebee’s or other chain diners in the U.S. I only ordered cocktails a couple times at bars (cosmo), and each time they came back barely cooled and poorly prepared. Front desk personnel were polite and helpful (e.g., Julie). EMBARKATION and DISEMBARKATION: embarkation took an hour, probably because everyone showed at the same time from pre-cruise tours. Disembarkation was organized well by Regent, luggage had to be out at 11PM the night before, and we disembarked by color coding. IN SUM, even knowing what I know, because of the event, I would have booked this charter cruise anyway, as we came for the event, not for the food. We did not perceive the service we received here as up to what we expect from a company that calls itself luxury, however, and did not find it better than several years ago on a non-charter cruise on the Voyager. So we will be reluctant to book Regent again for a regular cruise, and will not consider it unless it is for a special event like this one where we book primarily for the event. Perhaps there were problems because this was a charter cruise and, contrary to what we had been advised prior to booking Regent, there may actually have been both food and staff cost-cutting measures implemented after all, without cruise line admission (we are not sure if Regent received more or less payment per passenger on this charter, compared with non-charters, though our total per diem for the event cruise was high). Management and crew may have known very well that most pax were there just for the event and would not likely be back anyway, so cut some corners, but I am speculating. So for now, we will stick with other luxury lines for non-charter cruising. After I had booked this cruise I learned that SB Ovation also had a charter option added for DDAY for the Museum, and in hindsight I of course have to wonder if food and service were similar, or better on that charter, event-oriented cruise. If there is a choice in the future, I will likely opt for a ship other than Regent Navigator. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We just completed a 12 night cruise from Amsterdam to Barcelona on the Voyager. Here is a brief synopsis - using Silversea (Spirit), Crystal and Princess (Diamond) for comparison. For perspective - you will find me in the gym, bar, ... Read More
We just completed a 12 night cruise from Amsterdam to Barcelona on the Voyager. Here is a brief synopsis - using Silversea (Spirit), Crystal and Princess (Diamond) for comparison. For perspective - you will find me in the gym, bar, restaurant or casino - not in the lectures, shops or shows. 1. Getting on and off is very easy - just like any similar ship. I can't say the same for Princess or similar lines. 2. Cabin - very comfortable bed and pillows, good staff and quiet - I like the Regent "touch" of offering bottles of liquor for the cabin. Good shower and water pressure - although the drain was slow when we first got on and we had to have it cleaned out. 3. Food - generally very good as is the case for all of the regular dining venues of the above cruise lines. In the morning I tend to go the buffet - which I will use for comparison. As between Crystal (best) and Princess (surprisingly good), the Voyager buffet is the most limited. If you like cheese and cold cuts - only one tray of yellow and white cheese and one tray of sliced salami. The breakfast service was relatively spotty and often there were not enough tables. We were seated promptly and efficiently in the dining rooms for dinner. Drinks came quickly when ordered. The coffee poured at breakfast is not good - which is not unique. 4. Bars - less ambiance than Crystal or Silversea - but the service was very quick - best of the three. The selection of liquor was also the best. That said, Crystal (I believe) gave special training to its bar staff and the overall bar experience was the best on that line. 5. Casino - slots (good selection), blackjack, 3-card poker, roulette and a small craps table. However, the casino only offered 1/1 odds behind the pass line (and come bets) on craps- so why bother? Note to Regent - make your casino contractor offer standard (5,4,3) odds on craps and you will have happier guests. Overall, the casino experience was good - friendly dealers etc. The casino was not busy. 6. Gym - good for the size of the ship. Two free weight benches and a bunch of machines. Interestingly, some must have carefully measures the actual weight of the free weights as they were labeled 23 lbs, 28 lbs etc. (not the normal round numbers). Top weight is 53 lbs. Note to Regent - there is no leg press, Smith machine (gym users know what that is) or anything else for the legs. Side note - I have never seen so many people carefully wiping down the equipment after each use. Of all, Princess had the best gym - larger ship. The Silversea (Spirit) barely had a gym at all. 7. Other - The bow deck areas of the ship are blocked off so you can't go right to the front of the ship to look out. The internet is only ok - just like the other cruise lines. Read Less
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