26 Vancouver to Alaska Regent Seven Seas Navigator Cruise Reviews

We are Gold level society members on the Regent Cruise Line and are loyal customers. But sailing on the Navigator has given us second thoughts about ever sailing on Regent again. We spent 31 days on the Regent Navigator traveling from ... Read More
We are Gold level society members on the Regent Cruise Line and are loyal customers. But sailing on the Navigator has given us second thoughts about ever sailing on Regent again. We spent 31 days on the Regent Navigator traveling from Vancouver to Alaska with our final destination at New York. Our observations of this ship is as follows: 1. The vibration on this ship is unacceptable and is most notable in the rear. We watched our wine glasses almost vibrate off the table. We could not eat our dinners in the specialty restaurant, Prime 7, without getting nauseated from the vibration. 2. The food was not up to the previous standard of Regent. Small portions were served in the Compass Rose dining room and the service was slow at times. Some of the food was not served hot and had to be sent back. In Prime 7, some of the steaks had to be sent back due to them being not tender. Also it appears that Regent cut back on the staff in the dining areas as some of our orders were forgotten by the waiters and they seemed to have to many tables to wait on. 3. Some of the free shore excursions and ports were so poor that we should have stayed on the ship. We were mostly taken to shopping areas and churches. We paid an additional fee for a tour and were so disappointed along with the other people on it that we asked for our money back. We filled out a form to get reimbursed and received the typical bed bug letter denying our request. Do not pay an additional fee for an excursion. They are not worth it. 4. Entertainment was fair with some shows being boring. We should have stayed in our room and watched some movies instead of going to some of these shows. In summary, it appears that Regent has lowered it standards in service, food , and the over all quality of the Navigator. This ship is slated for a world tour next year. We cannot imagine signing up for such a cruise with the terrible vibration on this ship. This ship is old,outdated and should be taken out of service. Our advice is to stay off this ship. We find this sad to write these comments on this cruise line, but the Navigator is destroying their image. As stated in the beginning, we are gold lever members of this cruise line, but we are not looking forward to the next level now. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Alaska is stunningly beautiful. The scenic wonders made the time well spent, but that is separate from our disappointing experiences on Navigator. We found the overall attitude to be very different from other luxury ships, ie ... Read More
Alaska is stunningly beautiful. The scenic wonders made the time well spent, but that is separate from our disappointing experiences on Navigator. We found the overall attitude to be very different from other luxury ships, ie Seabourn, and very disappointing. The staff was superficially pleasant but mechanical, as long as we made routine requests they were okay. But if you want something out of the ordinary, expect to hear No. We experienced disagreeable and argumentative responses from waiters, those at the Destination Services desk, and Reception. Four Seasons Hotel training might be of benefit. The telephone barely worked. Internet? The slowest and least convenient system we've experienced on any ship. Food was extremely disappointing, neither delicious nor interesting, and small portions were a joke. Wines were bottom shelf. We understand the need for budget, but regular wines were lower quality. Avoid the entertainment, beautiful voices but artlessly arranged. Our cabin was adequate. Nothing special. Furniture was also just adequate. The ship is very noisy, though, creaking constantly. We found this annoying and not relaxing. The television could not be operated from the bed. Small conveniences should have been addressed and revised. However, our steward and butler were outstanding, and a high point of our journey, always a smile and willing to help. One bright star: The pool grill prepares delicious hamburgers! Ice Cream bar is fun! Other bright star: Helicopter to the glacier, walking on the ice. Priceless! Biggest disappointment, aside from rudeness: the decision made to bypass Hubbard Glacier rather than perhaps eliminating Sitka. Due to a fairly bad storm, the Captain explained the revised route to the entire ship AFTER we pulled away from Sitka. (We might have left the ship.) (This was days after announcing the journey up Tracy Arm was not possible due to ice, but why make the announcement moments AFTER the excursion in a smaller boat has already departed so we had no choice but to miss it completely?) Even before the storm, activities were cancelled, rescheduled, and generally disappointing, with the exception of the helicopter ride (extra but worth every cent.) Destination services personnel were either rude or poorly trained. The ship vibrates noticeably most of the time, and it rolls and pitches in bad sea. We experienced a storm such that we were not able to visit Hubbard Glacier, one of the highlights of the trip. We were told this is very unusual, but other comments indicate it seems fairly standard and there could be a contingency plan to include more highlights. (Was the reason for eliminating Hubbard and going directly to Seward for the passengers' comfort as stated, or because they have a schedule, and it is more important to get finished than to provide a truly memorable trip?) Many passengers disembarked still sick from over 36 hours of violent seas. Was there really no better way to handle that? For a $20,000 holiday for a week, this was just adequate. Frankly, I want more than adequate for that expense of time and money. If we return to Alaska, we'll not do so on Regent Seven Seas. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
This was our second cruise ever, the first being on a huge Princess cruiseship. I was overwhelmed on the first cruise by the new experience and the size and the service. This cruise, however, was so much more intimate. 490 passengers ... Read More
This was our second cruise ever, the first being on a huge Princess cruiseship. I was overwhelmed on the first cruise by the new experience and the size and the service. This cruise, however, was so much more intimate. 490 passengers and 350 crew. You never wanted for anything, and everyone was so nice and looked like they enjoyed their job on the ship. Three top notch restaurants plus the pool grill. They had a full-time naturalist onboard, and plenty of activities on the ship and off. All land excursions were included in the price (except for a few that involved flying somewhere). The destination staff had all the logistics in place so that everything went smoothly on land. We had the "cheapest" room with only a picture window view, but the room was beautiful and arranged well. Since it was Alaska, we never missed having a veranda, and actually had more privacy this way. The entertainment was good, and the show on the last day was called Krew Kapers, and was a talent show put on by the staff. The staff members did everything from native dances, to skits, to individual nightclub songs. The show ended with a number where the music was the song "We are Family" and that was the feeling you got on the whole cruise -- that you were part of a big royal family while on the ship. I would definitely cruise Regent Seven Seas again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
We just completed a 7 day Alaska cruise on the Regent Navigator from Vancouver to Anchorage. We were an extended family group of 15 ranging in age from 9 to 86. I just want to say at the outset what a fabulous job Regent's staff did ... Read More
We just completed a 7 day Alaska cruise on the Regent Navigator from Vancouver to Anchorage. We were an extended family group of 15 ranging in age from 9 to 86. I just want to say at the outset what a fabulous job Regent's staff did to make this really a perfect cruise. This was a first cruise for many of us and we were quite concerned after reading some of the previous reviews about this trip and the ship. However, our concerns were quickly put to rest after only a few hours on the ship! Regent has done an amazing job of providing impeccable service on a lovely, intimately sized ship. Honestly, Regent's staff outperforms some of the best luxury franchise hotels in service. I do not think a single staff member said "no" to anything that we asked for. They went out of their way to make sure that every need was met. For example, the restaurant staff prepared special meals for us - they found out that many of us liked Indian cuisine, so one evening prepared an entire Indian dinner for us in Compass Rose! Our steward, Clifford, was so helpful and accommodating- always providing whatever we needed and keeping our cabins spotless in the most unobtrusive way. Our niece had her birthday on the ship and found her room filled with balloons on the morning of her birthday! These are only a few examples of the amazing service we received on Regent. The food on Regent is very good. There is always such a good selection and the fruit and vegetables always very fresh. Chef Fox is very nice and we even did a galley tour on our last day. The galley is spotless and the staff just as nice as everyone else we met! We only ate at Prime 7 once and it is very hard to get into, but the meal was quite good and the service perfect. The Navigator is a smaller ship, so the captain got us in closer than most ships in several spots. For instance, we got within 1/2 mile of Hubbard Glacier, which was spectacular! Our cruise was a mix of families and older clientele. There were plenty of families on this cruise and the Purser made sure to have plenty of activities for kids to do despite the fact that they don't have all the kid zones of a bigger ship. We really can't recommend this cruise highly enough. I can honestly say you get what you pay for on Regent. Would do it again in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Based on friends' recommendations, we decided to try Regent for our planned Alaska cruise. We have cruised with our children (then teenagers) on Royal Caribbean before - it was great - but this special cruise for just the two of us ... Read More
Based on friends' recommendations, we decided to try Regent for our planned Alaska cruise. We have cruised with our children (then teenagers) on Royal Caribbean before - it was great - but this special cruise for just the two of us was perfect. Although I say "perfect" I will emphasize any info that was actually lacking at all - just for the point of educating anyone planning a cruise on this ship - I know I read lots of reviews and got some good pointers. Pack lots of layers and varying weather clothes. We ended up having unusually warm and dry weather but we were prepared for all climates. We brought waterproof pants that go over regular pants and come off easily, lightweight rain slicker with hood, a few pairs of hiking pants with zip-off legs, warm wool socks, good waterproof hiking shoes (sneakers). Review the "casual elegant" after 6pm dress code. I went about as casual as I could. Internet service, as expected, is slowwww. We had unlimited as part of a promotion, so I brought my laptop planning on doing my regular Zumba on youtube. They block [rightfully so] Youtube, Skype and a few others to help with shared bandwidth. If I had known I would have brought DVD's (player in cabin) instead of laptop. The 2 days on open sea were a bit rough - the last day the worst. Do bring sea sickness meds if you are at all prone. Bring binoculars - stabilizing feature is nice (we didn't have those but used someone else's once) The disembarkation process in Seward - getting to Anchorage - was not well communicated or orchestrated in "Regent" style. Press your agent on this, make sure you are all set. There are things to see in Seward, the marine center, Exit Glacier, the marina. We rented a car - really really $$$ - only Hertz available. We were happy to have the car but in retrospect we might have spent time in Seward, taken the afternoon train or bus to Anchorage, and then rented the car there. We had decided we wanted maximum flexibility. Our Regent booking agent was polite and pleasant but not very helpful, particularly after we had paid our deposit. i would use an outside travel agent. Some of the tours call 15 minutes earlier than reality to allow for "latecomers". I am not a latecomer, so you may want to ask if you don't want to stand around on the pier for no reason (this happened in 2 of our 4 excursions). The food was fantastic! It is always easy to get seated at Compass Rose - the Italian restaurant is smaller, and with larger groups there may be a wait. Prime Seven is by reservation and was truly awesome - even though my husband is vegetarian and I am Pescatarian. All the menus include "spa" choices and the servers are ready to make any adjustments you can think of. Our first morning we ate breakfast at Compass Rose (after that we went to the buffet). I asked if the grapefruit juice was "real" or "drink". The server went to the pool deck and had the smoothie station whip a glass of grapefruit juice for me - it was wonderful and so unexpected. The buffets had the benefit of self-selection (I like to get a little of everything) but servers provided as much service as possible in a buffet. The staff on this ship were so friendly (seemed real), engaging, and professional - from the cabin steward to the maintenance crew. You would never know the tips were already included. There was evening entertainment every night except Juneau (late excursions) from 9:30 to about 10:15 - perfect time, perfect length, and well done. The on board naturalist was phenomenal - interesting and informative. Not many children - it is a pricey cruise - but don't go with another line for the camp or waterslide. I saw nothing but happy children, interacting with their families, enjoying the awesome natural beauty of Alaska, and yes, there were some special shipboard activities for them. There was one thing I did not like - there is a cigar lounge on Deck 6. We were assured that there is sufficient insulation - not true. There were varying degrees of smoke on that deck, at all times, somewhat nauseating. In addition, we were not aware that there would be two other smoking areas, on the pool deck, and the rear upper deck, one of our favorite hang out spots. Thankfully, we only saw one of the areas used once but had there been smokers there regularly it would have been very unpleasant. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
My family and I just returned from a trip from Vancouver to Seward on the Seven Seas Navigator. The landscape was beautiful. The excursions were great. The staff was friendly and attentive with the exception of some of the servers ... Read More
My family and I just returned from a trip from Vancouver to Seward on the Seven Seas Navigator. The landscape was beautiful. The excursions were great. The staff was friendly and attentive with the exception of some of the servers around the pool. The ship was clean. The food was excellent in the Compass Rose and Prime 7 and ok in other venues. The house wines (included) served in the Compass Rose were very good. Sometimes the service in the Compass Rose was slow. It was nice to have all gratuities included (even in the spa). The ship overall is well run and friendly. My main criticism is the fact that I was led to believe that the ship is renovated. This is far from the truth. Our cabin did have what appeared to be newly upholstered furniture, drapery, and carpet. However, the bathroom although spacious was original, and it looked it. The fixtures were accented in brass and were dated and worn. The granite was old and definitely not resurfaced. The cabinets were old just as tub and flooring as well! The wall paper throughout the ship looked dingy. The lighting in our cabin was brass (very 1980's). The furniture looked like it was from the 1980's as well. So, Regent's claim of refurbishment is greatly overstated! For the money we spent we expected real renovation--especially since we had two rooms! One good thing is that the beds were comfortable and the linens were decent. On the passaged from Sitka to Seward the seas were very rough. For the first time on a cruise, I experienced debilitating sea sickness that lasted from mid day until well after midnight. I don't know if the fact that the ship is older and/or smaller contributed toward it, but it was quite miserable. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This was a trip of a lifetime. We have wanted to do an Alaskan cruise for years and now we are empty nesters we thought this is the best time. If you really want to experience Alaska, don't wait until you retire or are too old and ... Read More
This was a trip of a lifetime. We have wanted to do an Alaskan cruise for years and now we are empty nesters we thought this is the best time. If you really want to experience Alaska, don't wait until you retire or are too old and crippled to get out and experience it. The ship was luxurious and in good shape. Sure there were a few carpet stains here or there in cabin hallways but it was clean and our concierge level room was spacious and comfortable. Don't let picky people discourage you with there bad review. It was not that dated. It was very quiet. We had Room 927 which I think was the perfect room. It was centered just enough to prevent feeling of the ship motion, one quick level below pool deck and bar, next to the elevators which we could never hear. Most of time we wondered where everyone was at, either in our room or even out in the halls. The verandah was comfortable for two people. AND, you only have one neighbor. Behind us was a foyer for the elevators and never saw a person even standing looking out the windows there even. The laundrette was a room away. You are actually outside the glass doors to the hall way (which were never shut) so we felt like we were not part of the club or missing out somehow but we got the better deal I think. They don't need those doors. The smaller ship got us extremely close to Hubbard Glacier, closer than most ships can get and it was originally an ice breaker...so thicker hull. No worries as chunks of ice floated by. Service was first class. Food was great and we are "foodies" so we are particular about taste and selection. I NEVER paid for any alcohol and I drank Guiness and Sam Adams beers, 12 year Glenfiddich, Glenmorangie single malt whisky, some great cabernets and chardonnays from California, Italy, France, and several premium vodkas. The only thing I paid for was a Hoya Monterrey Especial cigar in the Cigar room. Shows at night were all good but get there 30 minutes before to get good seats, theater is small but comfortable. Upper level sides are hard to see from at times. Excursions were great. Have to be flexible. Our dog sledding got cancelled for weather but they offered helicopter up to glacier and drank water from the glacier stream. Wow. Crab feast was great even for kids but there is long staircase down to shoreline, even longer going back up. Saw Eagles close up. Kayaking with Glacier view is not what was advertised. The glacier is like 20 miles or way or more IF there are no clouds. You kayak in a bay. Saw eagles close up and was fun and worth it but NOT what we were expecting. Few tiny negatives: 1. The ship vibration is felt in heavy seas due to powerful engines (to get through ice!) We rarely felt it except in the back of ship, in the restaurant the night going through open waters in Gulf of Alaska. Never felt it in the Inside Passage. I WOULD NOT book any rooms in the aft cabins. 2. Exercise room is tiny and opens at 7:00 AM (was 3 hours past our body time) and you couldn't use machines until 8:00 am because it made noise for rooms below. Yet people were dropping weights! So...DO NOT book a room in the stern of ship on Level 10 under the exercise facility! 3. They need to improve their systems for those with food allergy. My wife has a tree nut allergy and we had to constantly be on guard and say something at every meal. Be proactive if you are allergic but you should be anyway. People without any don't understand. TIPS: 1. Bring a powerstrip, very few outlets to charge phones, etc. 2. Bring a good camera like a Canon Rebel (no thinking) and get a telephoto lens as well. Bring multiple 16mB data cards since I promise you will want to take tons of pictures. I backed them up everyday on ship computer in library by copying over to another card and wife kept to make sure we didn't loose any pictures somehow (loss, airline lost luggage, etc.) Also bring a video camera like a little palm size Sony. Got to film Hubbard Glacier calving and hear the thunder cracking. I WISH i had bought a waterproof GoPro camera. We went kayaking and my video camera fogged up inside my coat pocket. Fuzzy pictures. 3. You need more water repellent clothing than cold weather. We had Underarmor Coldgear under clothes and usually hot. We got wet more than we got cold. 4. Ask for stuff at dinner if you want it and you don't see it listed. I got Creme Brulee and Scallops and extra anchovies just by asking my waiter. 5. I would only take a ship sponsored excursion unless you just can't get on one you want. The ship will be more inclined to wait longer if you are not back by ALL Aboard. 6. Make YOUR OWN flight arrangements. We did not get to Vancouver until 11:30 pm and could not enjoy the 4 Seasons hotel any. They will put you on flights that are inconvenient and underused, thus are cheaper for the cruise line that way. Spend the extra to tell them what flights you want. 7. Try to get there a day or two early to see the city before the cruise. We couldn't gone from our business any longer than we were but wished we could have seen a little of it. 8. Don't overpack. We wore same pants and underlayers two days in a row for excursions. The laundrette is free and provides soap automatically. Easy. And if premium cabin, your butler can press things for you. 9. You don't need boots for the glacier or dog sledding. They provide boot coverings to go over regular shoes. i would wear normal tennis shoes or trekking shoes. I wore my heavy Timberland insulated hiking boots on the plane trips to save luggage weight and didn't need them. 10. Ask if there are any big companies or corporations or meetings on the cruise. Shell oil had 120 people and it did interfere a little with meals since they all went down at same time one night before a big presentation. 11. Sitka was about the only place that didn't have mass jewelry stores that apparently the big cruise lines own and put at all their ports of call. It's a pretty town but I wouldn't walk it much. We would recommend going to raptor center instead unless you don't have an excursion like we did salmon fishing. Our boat caught some but others didn't. 12. Juneau has a homeless soup kitchen with crackheads and derelicts walking around downtown where the stores are. We went to the Red Dog Saloon which had good food but when we walked around the stores, we were hit up for money and did not feel safe. Several druggies were being loud and arguing at each other and overhead some talking about losing some tourist they were watching. I was wishing I had a pocket knife I normally carry, it was that bad. Until the city does something, DO NOT WALK around Juneau, especially the tourist stores. Take an excursion and go back directly to the boat. 13. Don't buy anything from the tourist stores. Do really need a hat or Tshirt that says Alaska or something about bears? The kids you left at home don't want that stuff either. If you have to buy a trinket souvenir, buy from a shop that is a locally owned one. 14. Journal everything you did, especially at the end of the day. You start forgetting stuff after a day. I posted my journal entry on Facebook each day once we were home (for home security), with pictures, for friends and family and they said they felt like they had been there with us. 15. Get a verandah. Sure it's cool or raining sometimes but sometimes it's beautiful and you can sit out and drink coffee watching all the islands or wildlife. If it is raining and cold, you can watch from the very back of the boat outside where it is protected from wind and they have heaters. 16. Bring an insulated mug. I had read that but didn't want to load suitcase down. You will want it for coffee or just water. The cups they give you are tiny. I got up at 5:00 am most days and went down to library and could get coffee and read paper. Internet is slow but can get online. May have to pay if on a lot or uploading stuff. 17. Plan your trip and start paying for it a year ahead so you can plan, organize and shop accordingly beforehand and get the room, excursions, etc. you want. 18. Live life now and don't wait until retirement. It may not come. Our dads got sick and died and never got to enjoy much retirement and traveling after. Go and do NOW! In the end, it was an awesome time, an great ship and staff, we would recommend it to anyone. Have fun! Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
We (45, no kids, non smoking, travel frequently) loved this ship and this cruise. The ship is gorgeous! Because it's so small, it's easy to get anywhere in 10 minutes or less. Staff is superior, always looking to make your ... Read More
We (45, no kids, non smoking, travel frequently) loved this ship and this cruise. The ship is gorgeous! Because it's so small, it's easy to get anywhere in 10 minutes or less. Staff is superior, always looking to make your experience a better one. We had a penthouse cabin with a butler. Room was beautiful, so spacious with a lovely balcony. In the end we felt we didn't benefit much from a butler. But our cabin class gave us the ability to choose a cabin and gave us advanced opportunity to choose excursions which was a real treat. Food was amazing. The Compass Rose restaurant was outstanding. Excellent service with wonderful views of the sea and menus which changed completely every day. Tables with beautiful linens-- much fancier than we expected. Beverage package was awesome. High end liquors and wines. Tip: be sure to ask to see the included wine list. They'll open a bottle just for you! Each night a few wines are featured but there is also a list. We had some fabulous wines. Entertainment was thin. This is an older crowd but there are 40 somethings as well. Shows were ok. Live music was ok but ended at 10:30 p. Wish the live piano played longer as well. I think it ended at 9. Lots of wonderful included excursions. Having everything included, even tips, was so nice. While this is an expensive line, you aren't nickel and dimed for anything. Well worth the money. BEWARE: of the fly fishing excursion which is an extra 800$ per couple. Trip included 10 people in the same location. Two lazy guides, only one of whom had a net. No picture taking! We fished over each other. Newbies to experienced anglers made it tough to get any attention or help. Waders even leaked! Wrote detailed email to Regent and was basically told no one said there would be photo taking and nobody else complained. Several people openly complained during the excursion. Total waste of $800! Have fun! We'll be cruising here again because of the luxury and small size of the ship (500 guests, 300 staff!). Naturalist was onboard for lectures which was terrific. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We had never cruised before and were uncertain what to expect. The information about checking in was a little sketchy, but once on board we were like kids in a candy shop. Our suite was well appointed and beautifully clean. Our steward was ... Read More
We had never cruised before and were uncertain what to expect. The information about checking in was a little sketchy, but once on board we were like kids in a candy shop. Our suite was well appointed and beautifully clean. Our steward was friendly and helpful throughout the cruise. We almost always ate in Compass Rose and could find absolutely no fault with the food or the service, far too much weight was gained during the voyage. A problem with online booking spoiled our meal in Prime 7 so we would probably not bother next time. Our suite was towards the bow of the boat and noise was never an issue. The onshore trips were well organised and interesting, as were the on board lectures. The only complaints, if you can call them that, were that wi-fi was not freely available, and because we were looking forward to the evening dancing, the timing of this was poor. The orchestra were excellent, but if we danced at 6.30 we were eating later than we prefer, or at 10.45 we were running out of energy! Altogether though, this was a memorable first cruise, and the deposit is already paid on the next one! Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
We were told that Regent Cruise Line was rated as a 6 Star Cruise line for a number of years. We elected to take their Navigator Tour to Alaska for a 12 day cruise, thinking that we could not go wrong. My wife came off this cruise, ... Read More
We were told that Regent Cruise Line was rated as a 6 Star Cruise line for a number of years. We elected to take their Navigator Tour to Alaska for a 12 day cruise, thinking that we could not go wrong. My wife came off this cruise, Regent Navigator, believing we had a K-Mart Experience, rather than a 6 Star experience and for numerous reasons, too little space to detail here, but here is why in summary form. 1. The food Buffets was repetitious in selection, we found left over’s from previous days served day in and day out, Pastries for breakfast and at their so called high end coffee bar cheap looking donuts and hardly the high class appearances that you would expect from a 6 Star operation. The Meat selections at the lunch buffets were low class in appearance and quality. Unlike Seabourn and even PG, hardly any special buffet theme day meals of any quality or thought. 2. Their main dining room did not have a 6 star appearance as opposed to other 6 star rated cruise lines and the waiters did not escort the couples separately to the tables. The portions were meager and choices very unlike expectations of a 6 star experience. 3. The coffee bar and entire 6 floor was permeated with smoke from the smokers parlor, especially making it impossible to sit at the coffee bar. 4. The Excursion dept. did not provide a very well presented user friendly means of learning about the various excursions, using a very poor TV presentations to do so, did little to guide or escort us unto the various excursions, provided barely any means to protects us back on board from the rain with a series of moving carts which was not provided, not all that knowledgeable on the excursions as well, and even used School Buses to take us around at one of the ports, a port by the way that was not even worthy of visiting, and when it came to Victoria, provided too little time to visit the very famous Butchart Gardens. The excursions themselves were very poor and not what we expected going to such a beautiful part of the world. 5.The Cabin did not have a 6 star appearance, having bedspreads that showed no elegant upkeep, balcony door that made constant noises, walls that showed no elegant upkeep as well. We had better looking cabin on a 5 Star rated line called PG that travels in the Polynesia Area. Even the Toilet had smells coming out of it ever so often. 6.Although considered by some to be not important, the Luggage Tags and preliminary boarding information was provided in plastic and paper in a very cheap looking voucher, as opposed to their competition which provide high end 6 Star leather and high class appearance. 7. The mentality of promotions seemed to take hold even as one got on board, offering a cheap $100.00 credit voucher for any new cruise, rather than providing a mentality of appreciation for board by providing a gift certificate for use on the cruise by the entering guests. In summary, we felt we had a K-mart experience, not a 6 star experience and when we tried to find out who we could talk to at Regent who had the authority to hear such comments, they refused to give us any names but told us simply to write our comments by mail to the Guest Relations dept. From our experience, they means deafness and opens the door to our "empty modern day Apology culture" with no substance to come of it. So we want to share our experiences and hope that those who are truly expecting a 6 star experience and know what that means will investigate whether they can expect that from Regent compared to others that have demonstrated being a 6 Star Cruise line.   Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
I tend to travel on a whim. It was time for a cruise and I'd always wanted to see Alaska. I know I really have nothing to compare Regent to but having heard horror stories about the bigger ships, the lines, the kids, the extra fees ... Read More
I tend to travel on a whim. It was time for a cruise and I'd always wanted to see Alaska. I know I really have nothing to compare Regent to but having heard horror stories about the bigger ships, the lines, the kids, the extra fees and gratuities, an all inclusive situation was appealing. I did a bit of research and decided in April that the next month would be a fine time to take that voyage, and Regent looked as good as any. I was intrigued that the ship was small enough to get through the inside passage and also could dock at smaller ports of call. Coming to the party late had a few disadvantages. We didn't qualify for round trip air or the pre-cruise hotel or transfers. Regent did discount the fare quite a bit to compensate. The only staterooms available were the concierge suites with butler service. Yes it cost a bit more, but again, travelling on a whim can be expensive! Upon arrival to Vancouver we took a taxi to the cruise dock where they checked in our luggage and allowed us to board the ship. A lovely lunch was served on the pool deck and we all enjoyed champagne and an informal meet and greet. We had a bit of time to tour the ship and by 2 pm we were allowed to our staterooms. Our luggage was already there and the suite was well appointed. It was a cross between old style luxury lines and modern conveniences. Large walk in closet, espresso maker, flat screen tv with on demand movies, fully stocked refrigerator, the spirits of our choosing, Bose Ipod dock, comfortable sitting area, private veranda, large bathroom with tub and shower. Very comfy bed and soft linens. Our butler was very helpful showing us how things worked and we settled in quite comfortably. Of course we all had to participate in the safety muster but hey, better safe than sorry. When we finally shoved off at around 5 pm the views of Vancouver were outstanding. Our butler brought us canapés, delicious. We then cruised past lovely islands and snowcap mountains while enjoying a delicious 6 course dinner at Compass Rose, all professionally presented and deliciously prepared. The only odd thing is that we are not wine drinkers and the sommeliers seemed perplexed that we chose not to imbibe.(I prefer not to mix my alcohol) Our first full day at sea was what I called "seasick day". About half the passengers were afflicted. I came prepared and took the time to read the Dramamine instructions that said to take the pills BEFORE the event. It was fun having most of the ship to myself and pretending to fly. Whoo! My husband did not fare as well, but he often choses to ignore my advice. We chose to eat breakfast in La Veranda buffet. Lots of choices, always delicious, plenty of room for seating, no lines, and a made to order omelet station. The one time we had breakfast at Compass Rose it was pretty slow service, most likely because all the room service orders were coming out of there. On our last night we ate at Prime 7. No complaints, everything was cooked to perfection. All our shore excursions were simply amazing. We were waitlisted for the seafeast but there was a cancellation so we were able to go. Speed boat through Ketchican wilderness. Bald Eagles. Harbor Seals. Whales. A low country boil that was to die for. Pristine scenery. Breathtaking. Fresh air. Do this one. It's included, no extra charge. Book your excursions early, they are all invigorating and fill up fast. We were blessed with great weather but pack for rain, you never know. The entertainment was a bit surreal....because the main theater was at the fore of the ship, there was some loud engine noise and vibration. The 60's themed "Age Of Aquarius" revue seemed like we were travelling 200 miles per hour and the dancers were a bit over the top. Not to say that the performers were untalented, quite the opposite. It just seemed a bit, well, weird. The Cirque show was mediocre. It was pretty much "here's the gymnastics our dancers can also do". Having seen real Cirque d' Soleil shows, unfortunately the ship show was not close. Even the costumes could have been better. But all in all, the energy was high and certainly there weren't any glaring slackers. The ship band was tight and played lots of standards. We enjoyed "Name That Tune". Played the game twice, came in 2nd the first time and won the second. (Helps to have a husband who's into Broadway shows) The little touches made the cruise extra special. Our housekeeping staff knew us by name. They not only cleaned the room daily, they turned down the bed every evening. The toiletries were high quality, L'Occitane and Hermes. I'm not really a nitpicker because life is too short to be negative all the time. Just a few teeny whines: The boutique was pretty limited in selection. The crew is from all walks of life but there were a few who's command of English was a bit rough. Generally, they were exceptionally pleasant and helpful, which made us feel like a bit of royalty, if only for a week. The gym is small and the classes fill up early. You may not get back from your excursion to make it in time. Plan on doing your own exercise if you really need to. I think the best show was the "Krew Kapers", the showcase of the crew's talents. There are many multitalented people working on that ship! This is an upper cost cruise line. But no booze bills, no high end restaurant charges, no gratuities. You either pay it up front or pay it at the end. I would rather not worry about every drink or excursion. The disembarkation was streamlined. The best part? While still on ship we booked another Regent Cruise for next spring. Got a great deal, airfare and pre-hotel included! Don't think I'll be cruising anyone else, ever. Six stars indeed!   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This was our second cruise on Regent. We worried that our first trip on Voyager was just a case of infatuation and reality may set in on the Navigator. We worried that it was smaller, that some reviews said it was crowded, and some ... Read More
This was our second cruise on Regent. We worried that our first trip on Voyager was just a case of infatuation and reality may set in on the Navigator. We worried that it was smaller, that some reviews said it was crowded, and some reviewers felt the bloom was off the rose. Not so. In this review I hope to concentrate on our ship experience rather than the ports. I posted port details and pictures on the Regent forum. If you are interested, you can find it here: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1902226 About us - we are recently retired, bi-national, and extensively traveled. We tend to be low key. We like cruises so we can "taste test" a region and decide whether we want to re-visit on our own. We enjoy each other's company and don't particularly care to make friends while on the cruise or to be known by name by staff. I mention this because some people do like the opposite and it seems that Regent gets a sense of what you need and provides it. We have sailed other cruise lines and disliked the crowds (1200 +, so not HUGE), the photographer, the set seating and dinner times, and, especially, being nickel and dimed every time you blinked. After one cruise, I nick named Celebrity, SELLebrity! Even pastries at teatime were an extra charge! This is another thing that I love about Regent. I really like everything being included. I grew up with a very frugal attitude and have practiced this all my life. When faced with constant decisions to spend money or not, I tend to fall on the side of not. Regent allows me to indulge myself - I'm less stressed and more in the moment. Yes, we paid upfront but it is so wonderful to feel pampered and indulged without the mental cash register ching- chinging in my head. Our embarkation in Vancouver was seamless. We had to vacate our hotel by noon, so I had the bright idea of delivering our bags to the ship so we could then walk around Vancouver a bit. Off to Canada Place we went, delivered our bags to a porter, went through a door and before we knew it we were through customs and checking in with ship staff! Onboard at 12:15 pm, glass of champagne in hand, heading up to the Veranda for lunch! Our suite was ready by 2:30. We were greeted by our cabin steward who was really perfect for us - efficient and friendly and not constantly underfoot. (This is in contrast to the suites with butlers...we upgraded at the last minute on Voyager to Penthouse C which included a butler. The service was just too much for our tastes.) Our suite was on deck 7 forward. This was an ideal location as we were close to the elevator banks and really close to everything. My only criticism of the suite was that I didn't like the artwork. In fact, I didn't like the artwork throughout the ship. This surprised me, as I loved the artwork on Voyager. Navigator's art was darker and somewhat derivative. Food in all the restaurants was consistently good. I had the chance to tour the galley and I was very impressed with its organization and its cleanliness. I asked the Executive Chef how they could possibly cook meats and fish to the desired temperature. He explained the clever system and throughout the week it worked perfectly. All the food was beautifully presented and very good. The menu was varied and you could easily choose a great meal to suit your dietary needs. The Sommeliers were low-key and knowledgible. For example, they went out of their way to get us some sweet wine (Canadian ice wine, in this case) whenever we had a starter of fois gras. Room service was efficient and professional. When food is delivered, they set up a table that is stored behind the couch, cover it with linen and serve your meal - very nice. We also used room service for hors d'euvres. The cheese tray was varied with 3 types of cheese as well as fresh and dried fruit; hummus platter included pita, olives, and raw vegetables for dipping. Wine and champagne were available in the suite with a quick phone call as well as hard liquor if you cared to make your own pre-dinner cocktail. Excursions were handled very well. The choices were diverse and there was no crowding. Your excursion tickets were waiting in your suite with the time and place to meet printed on them. Most meeting points were on the pier rather than in the theater. I MUCH preferred this to the system on Voyager. We didn't really take advantage of the entertainment options with the exception of the Cirque show and Crew Capers. Both were well done. The crew show was very funny and very touching. If you are stuck in your suite for some reason, there are many on-demand movies to watch. You can also take DVD's from the library. The ship itself was lovely. It is a small ship but the interior spaces are well thought out. We were blessed with perfect weather but I can imagine that the public rooms would get a bit tight if the weather was lousy. We had breakfast and lunch on the aft outside deck of La Veranda every day. It is equipped with heat lamps. We also loved cocktails on the aft outside deck of Galileo's. This is partially a smoking area but it was not really a problem for the non-smoking side. If I had one suggestion for management, it would be to put more seating out there. It was an incredibly lovely place for sail-away. If you have never taken a Regent voyage, I encourage you to do so. We already have our next cruise booked - Asia and India in 2014! We had an absolutely wonderful time, in a wonderful setting both on and off the ship. This is an ideal ship for an Alaskan cruise. We would go again in a heartbeat!   Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
I will not review the ports as they are covered regularly by others. The company my wife works for chartered the ship for a special 6 day northbound Alaska cruise. We were 352 on a ship that is designed to carry 490. Don't know if ... Read More
I will not review the ports as they are covered regularly by others. The company my wife works for chartered the ship for a special 6 day northbound Alaska cruise. We were 352 on a ship that is designed to carry 490. Don't know if the line used the smaller passenger count to grant furlough to some extra employees, so some of my comments may not be applicable to a "normal" cruise. For example: our category B suite normally comes with a butler; we did not have one. In general, we enjoyed the cruise and the pluses outweighed the minuses by far. The ship itself is a strange looking vessel that i thought was less attractive than more traditional ships, but I know that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Once aboard, the decor is pleasing and muted, with some areas looking well worn and in need of attention. Not shabby, but not up to snuff for an upscale ship. And that describes my overall feeling about the cruise. The cabin stewardess was efficient and friendly, but requests were handled as a one time event rather than a preferred, on-going request. In room coffee pods for example, were only refilled when we asked. We asked every day. The toilet had a bath and a shower, and superb toiletries by Bulgari. This opulence was balanced by the cheapest toilet paper I have ever used in my life. Sam's Club is better. Food was universally good and professionally served. Menu choices were adequate but not noteworthy, with some unusual items. Cruising in Alaska with it's famed seafood and the one night (only) lobster was offered... was Florida lobster. Why ? Also, In both restaurants the wine steward regularly offered refills of your chosen wine, but we had to ask for water or coffee refills almost every time we ate. Again... a mixed message. I know that other nationalities do not drink water/milk/coffee/soda during meals but this ship serves a predominantly American clientele for much of the year. Breakfast had a wonderful, bountiful, cornucopia in the buffet, with attendants to serve. But only one chef/cook to handle egg requests. Delicious but oh-so-slow. Two percent milk was provided for coffee in every venue. Cream was not available but the server would trot back to the galley to get half and half if one asked. 2 percent milk ? Now for the positives: I loved the small scale of the ship. Everything is near by and decks are served by the fastest elevators at sea. Never... Never ... waited more than 5 seconds for an elevator. The compact size allows public room placement to be a non-issue, and getting on and off the ship was a pleasure every time. The all-inclusive style used by Regent Seven Seas is a gift from the gods. Booze, soft drinks, shore excursions (some not all ), gratuities and the like are simply not an issue. Not once all week did I have to produce the cabin card to buy something. Not much of a gambler so the casino wasn't visited. Room service breakfast is full menu and full service. The attendant sets up a full height table with linens and silverware. Classy. The Captain and senior officers were visible and approachable every day. When was the last time a ship's Master approached you to shake your hand ? In my case, not once in 16 cruises, but it happened on Navigator. In closing, I reiterate that we enjoyed the cruise very much and would sail on this ship again in a heartbeat. Not sure it's worth the premium pricing, however, since there were hiccups in service.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
Everything ran smoothly on our cruise. The staff was polite all the time. We had internet access though the computers ran so slowly you would have thought it was a dial-up modem. We were greeted on embarkation with a glass of champagne. I ... Read More
Everything ran smoothly on our cruise. The staff was polite all the time. We had internet access though the computers ran so slowly you would have thought it was a dial-up modem. We were greeted on embarkation with a glass of champagne. I particularly liked the spacious rooms with a bath tub as well as a free standing shower. Slippers and robes were a nice touch as was the quality soaps, conditioners, etc. The bed was extra comfy with 5 pillows.The food was wonderful and plentiful. We enjoyed dining in Setti Mare, the Italian restaurant as well as Prime 7. I had a huge porterhouse steak and my wife had lobster. All were well presented by their competent wait staff.I liked the variety of wine, though we are not really drinkers. Gratuities were included which was nice and at cruise end, no one had their hand out like they do on other cruise lines. Additionally, there was no annoying photographer taking pictures.. The shows they put on in the evenings were of professional quality.Our only complaint was the smoking. Of the 500 passengers, about 10 were smokers. We had to pass the smoking room which was not well ventilated and seeped out into the hallway. They also allowed smoking on the enclosed pool deck which made our time there at a minimum. I think Regent could do away with the smoking all together as it was a real annoyance. The debarkation ran smoothly. A nice touch was allowing us to store our luggage in the Anchorage Hilton and then walk around the town for the day. They drove us to the airport in the hotel shuttle. A nice touch. I will only go a luxury cruise now. It is the only way to go! Read Less
Sail Date June 2013
Although we're not generally luxury cruisers we wanted to do something special to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. After reading reviews and comparing itineraries and reviewing other details with our travel agent we selected ... Read More
Although we're not generally luxury cruisers we wanted to do something special to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. After reading reviews and comparing itineraries and reviewing other details with our travel agent we selected the Regent Seven Seas 7-night cruise to Alaska on the Navigator. This was our first visit to Alaska and our first cruise with Regent Seven Seas. Based on our research our expectations were high but fulfilled in every meaningful way. Ship - The Navigator is a relatively small ship with a maximum capacity of 490 passengers. However, this seemed to be an ideal size for sailing the Inside Passage and getting in and out of smaller ports. Embarkation and Disembarkation was very smooth and well-organized, especially for shore excursions. We especially liked the all-inclusive format of this cruise and never had to sign for anything or hand out gratuities to the staff. All of the staff were friendly, helpful and knowledgeable and treated us like royalty throughout our cruise. Suite - We booked a window suite on Deck 5 which was perfectly located mid-ship near the stairs and elevators, disembarkation for shore excursions and the Compass Rose main dining room where we ate all of our evening meals except one which was in Prime 7. Our suite was exquisite and large by cruise standards featuring a bathroom with tile floors, separate bathtub and shower as well as a walk-in closet. The bed was queen size and very comfortable for two people and there was a separate sitting area that could be partitioned with a curtain. Our suite did not have a balcony but for this particular cruise we never felt that was a necessity because the weather was generally cloudy or rainy and windy and getting to the outside decks was convenient if we wanted to go outside. Dining - We ate all of our evening meals in Compass Rose except one which was in Prime 7. The Compass Rose menu had adequate variety in food and wine selections for every meal and the food was very good to excellent. We never really had a bad meal at Compass Rose and the service was excellent and attentive. Our one meal in Prime 7 was somewhat of a disappointment as the service was a bit slower than in Compass Rose and the food was not exceptional as you might expect for what is billed as the ship's top of the line restaurant. We ate breakfast and lunch in La Veranda and The Pool Grill where the food was served buffet style with custom orders available for eggs, burgers and such. We were never able to dine in Setti Mari as it required a long wait for a table. Entertainment - The evening shows were surprisingly good and much better than expected. The dancers were outstanding in the three musical shows we attended and the singers were certainly quite talented and on par with what you would experience in a good cabaret or nightclub. One show featured a comedian/impressionist who was very funny and performed some entertaining impressions of both young and old celebrities. The two lounge pianists ranged from excellent to mediocre depending on their repertoire and the enthusiasm of their audience. There are also other entertainment options on board including movies, karaoke and bingo among others. Terry Breen, the onboard naturalist and narrator was exceptional and really made this cruise something extra special. All of the passengers were impressed by her subject matter knowledge and the little details she added to enlighten and entertain. We talked with her directly on a couple of occasions and found her very approachable, warm and generally interested in helping the passengers get the most out of their Alaska cruise experience. Public Areas - The Navigator is a relatively small ship so is limited in what it can offer but for this cruise we never really felt lacking for anything and found we enjoyed the intimacy of a smaller ship. We didn't use the pool as the weather was usually quite cool. The exercise area was certainly adequate featuring a number of cardiovascular machines and a separate area for aerobics and yoga/pilates. We didn't use the Canyon Ranch spa/salon services but their menu of services was extensive and they appeared quite busy at the times we visited the area to use the exercise facilities. We enjoyed the Navigator Lounge for late evening nightcaps and early morning coffee. The bar service in the Navigator Lounge was especially friendly and helpful. The Casino is quite small but was never crowded - we're not big time gamblers so that wasn't really a concern for us. There is one small boutique/gift shop which could offer more sizes in their apparel selection. The jewelry store was well-stocked and the sales staff was knowledgeable and helpful. We also enjoyed Galileo's on Deck 11 which featured afternoon tea with pastries and fruit and late night entertainment. Summary - In general, we had a wonderful experience on the Regent Seven Seas Navigator and can't wait to go again. As a testament to this ship and Regent Seven Seas, there was a very prominent Hollywood film director on board who could have easily afforded to charter his own private yacht. The several times that we observed him in the public areas, he appeared to be in great spirits and sincerely enjoying himself. And the staff treated him much like all the other guests - like royalty.   Read Less
Sail Date June 2013
PCB (post cruise blues) is abating, so I can finally sit back and attempt to objectively take a look at our Regent Navigator Alaskan adventure. I say adventure, because I find every vacation, every trip, every cruise an adventure. ... Read More
PCB (post cruise blues) is abating, so I can finally sit back and attempt to objectively take a look at our Regent Navigator Alaskan adventure. I say adventure, because I find every vacation, every trip, every cruise an adventure. I go into each one with anticipation and child-like excitement. I also go into these adventures with expectations. Like everyone, my expectations are associated with my life experiences, attitude, background, lifestyle, culture many things. Before I go a step further, let me say that Regent exceeded my expectations. Period. I could stop here, but then, it wouldn't be much of a review, would it? I wish I could drag my suitcase out again and start packing. If money were no object, and family issues weren't as they were, I'd be waving to everyone from the deck this minute. I'd take my daughter back to Barcelona, where we spent a week, just the two of us, a decade ago. Ahhh, PCB is hard to shake. First, I feel the need to gain credibility with you readers, and so I do so by telling you a bit about my cruise history. My first cruise was oh, about 20 years ago with Premier Cruise Lines—the Big Red Boat (the precursor to Disney). I can't remember much about it other than it brought my then 3 year old bonus child much joy. I know it wasn't luxury by any means, but we did have fun. Our second cruise was sometime in the late 90s with Renaissance in the Mediterranean, and it was on one of their very smallest ships (this held less than 100 passengers, so not the ones Azamara took over). It was glorious, a small, yacht-like experience, the highlight of which was sailing through the Corinth Canal where we could almost reach out and touch the sides. We loved it. I won't bore you with each particular cruise we took thereafter, but I can tell you that I've cruised enough to be a fairly competent evaluator. Let's see, in addition to the ones I've mentioned, there has been Carnival, Celebrity, Crystal, Disney, HAL, NCL, Royal Caribbean, SeaDream Yacht Club, and a small line in the Galapagos Islands. We have cruised in outside, inside, balcony and we even treated ourselves to a suite once. We cruised in an Owner's Suite on Royal Caribbean when we took our children and grandchildren to celebrate a milestone. That doesn't stand out as anything particularly special. . .the only thing that comes to mind was being aggravated at my just turned 18 year old son (the same one we took on our first cruise), for drinking (a lot) in the concierge lounge and not being polite. In just the last 11 months, I gleefully sailed on Celebrity, SeaDream, Carnival, and finally. . .drum roll, Regent! The range in cost was amazing, but then again, the range in experience was amazing. Some of our cruises have been better than others by far, but quite frankly, they were all good, each in their own way, either because of the great deal, the weather, the itinerary or, the luxury of basking in all the luxury of, in this case, Regent. I am a very lucky woman. I tell you all these things, not to brag (sadly due to family and economic issues those days are coming to an end), but just so you know that I am objective . . . as objective as a woman suffering from PCB can be. I should also note that as many times as I have cruised, this is my first official review on Cruise Critic. Impressed enough to finally go to the trouble to do it, I suppose. Now, next. . .I tell you this, not to have it intrude in your life for a second, but to tell you that life changed forever more when our youngest daughter was diagnosed with a very malignant, inoperable brain tumor two years ago. Quite frankly we don't plan very far ahead anymore, and unlike in the past, we now always buy travel insurance. It should be particularly noted that we planned this trip over a year ahead, nervous though we were at the time. It was the first time in a year that we "felt alright" about thinking more than a day ahead. The point is, not that I ever really did, but nowadays, I NEVER go looking for issues or trouble. Instead, I pinch myself everyday and remind myself that I am alive. . .that my daughter is alive. . .and that I am gifted with a life filled with family, friendship, love and joy. And I never have to go bed hungry. Bottom line, perhaps all this makes a difference in the way I approach adventures. If so, then go ahead and diagnosis me with that rose-colored glass syndrome. I wouldn't blame you if you did. So. . .after that long disclaimer, let me say that Regent has won my heart. In fact, I'm downright giddy about my experience with Regent. Alaska is one of Mother Nature's finest accomplishments. Here are my photos. And since I've already told that story in my onboard CC blogging on the Regent board (re: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1471396), I'll stick to the actual cruise experience in this review. I should also note that I religiously crunch numbers when it comes to booking a vacation, and they have to work for me. We had originally booked Crystal (which we love also, by the way), for an almost identical itinerary, but when I started working the numbers, Regent showed up as being about $500 less. This was true even after factoring in Crystal's As You Wish Ship-board credit (Crystal is currently not all inclusive, but that will be changing in 2012), so therefore, when allowing for the (much) larger standard stateroom, all drinks and excursions, and our desire for a less formal experience, well, bingo. I couldn't dial our TA fast enough. I'm rational and penny-pinching like that. We stayed in a category E suite, deck 6 mid-ship, and loved the location. It was so easy to take a few steps in the morning to grab that ever-perfect double shot cappuccino in the Navigator Lounge. Thanks to the good advice from Regent posters on CC, we paid extra to be in category E in order to avoid the dreaded aft vibration. That was good advice. I know that the vibration was LARGE and obvious in Galileo's (although after 2 Bombay Sapphire martinis, it was no bother whatsoever), and so being a light sleeper, I probably would have been bothered with an aft suite. Oops, sounds like I'm starting out complaining. Oh well, since I jumped in this side of the pool, might as well get to the other side. Food. Ah, that subjective topic. Over all, we thought the food was very, very good. Never had a bad dinner in Compass Rose. Never had a bad lunch or breakfast there either, for that matter. Service was always charming, albeit a bit slow at times. Don and I never minded the pace—it was obvious that the staff was working as hard as they could--but once we ate with another couple who was anxious to get to the show, and they were a bit annoyed. THEY affected our experience far more than the slow service. My advice to any new-to-Regent cruiser is to find a server you like as soon as possible, and ask for him each time. It's kind of the way a mass cruiser might have of duplicating the getting to know you, and therefore good service (at least perceived) that comes from sitting at the same table each night. Couldn't go wrong with a burger poolside. . .the best on any ship, in my opinion. Served with sweet potato fries, well. . .yum! Also, I loved the soup in every venue on the ship, hot, cold, didn't matter. And the salt bread sticks? My goodness. . .to die for! Prime 7 was the only big let-down for me regarding food, although the service was good. We dined there twice. The first time was with another couple. I ordered surf and turf, and quite frankly, the steak was so salty that it was inedible . . .and I love salt! Had I been very hungry, I would have sent it back, and I really never do that. Actually, everything seemed "over-salted," and my husband and table-mates agreed. The second time we went, I made a point of saying "no salt" on my steak, thinking this was the way to give them a second chance. Unfortunately, they must have felt that left them with no choice for seasoning because then everything was relatively tasteless. Too bad there was not an in-between. Btw, the server told us on our second visit before we ordered that there had been other complaints about the salt, and it had been "corrected." And finally, I'm swimming fast to get to the other side, in the "dumb rules" category, I only experienced one. My advice to Regent is to empower the crew to disobey dumb rules. Every. Single. Time. One night we, along with two other couples, stayed a bit late in Galileo's. Not real late, mind you, after all, did you see our pictures? Just late enough that food was only available via room service. Not knowing this, nor caring, I suppose, I asked our server if we could get some pizza to nibble on. It was obvious he tried every way in his mind to work it, but finally after some discussion with me, just said I would have to get it through room service. Bless his heart, he even called and ordered it for me. . .to be delivered to my suite. . .are you following me not to Galileo's 'cause that wasn't possible. No problem, I understand rules, don't agree with dumb rules, but it wasn't his rule. I easily went down to the suite to get it. . .took it from the room service waiter, and to his astonishment, and to everyone's I passed, I smiled, lifted it up to my shoulder like a professional, and took it up to Galileo's. No biggie for me. But it shouldn't have been that way. Agree? Whew, now I'm on the side I want to be on, so I can reveal the true and memorable Regent experience. Wine service was exemplary. It's one thing to have included wines, and pour only table wines. . .this my friends, was an entirely different situation. The wines we were served were all good wines, at least they met our standards. A few times I asked for something different after being allowed to sample the wine they were pouring at the time. The request was quickly obliged, and even suggested. We only purchased wine one night and that was for our anniversary dinner. Even then it wasn't that we felt it was necessary. . .just that, well, we felt we should spring for something for our anniversary. Silly, eh (I must have picked that up in Canada)? Never once did we feel pressure to purchase wines from the reserve list. Our glasses were never even half-empty (couldn't resist). This was true for water glasses, wine glasses, and cocktail glasses. I found myself waving those pouring people away. . .well, perhaps I'm exaggerating. I didn't wave them away often. Our excursions as a whole were very good. Some were less so due to weather, but to whom do I complain? The excursion staff was great. The excursions were handled efficiently, no waiting or lining up at all. We were wait-listed for two included excursions and they both cleared, so I think that happens more than not. In other words, fear not. Regarding entertainment, we didn't go to every show in the evening, but when we did, we were very pleased. Thought the comedian's talent exceeded his being stuck with a gig on a ship—very, very funny! The Krew Kapers performance was awesome. . .not the least bit cheesy because it was performed with such heart. Loved Ray, the cruise director. He's got it all down. And Terry Breen, as the onboard naturalist? Well, Regent must know that she is a treasure because she has been with them for years. Can't say enough good things about her and the enhancement she provided for this nature itinerary. We found fellow passengers to be fun, interesting and congenial. We particularly had a great time with a few people we met. I loved the relaxed, yet elegant dress code. I found that people dressed just perfectly for dinner, not stuffy, but never sloppy either. We found it to be just right for the itinerary. Heck, we found it to be just right for our current lifestyle. Our suite was downright divine. No wonder Regent always wins the awards for stateroom categories on Travel & Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler. Duh. Large. Walk-in closet. Great bathroom. I can't tell you the number of times I took a delicious nap curled up on the bed, wrapped in the cozy wool throw while Don was reading on the sofa. Again, service was great in the suite as well as everywhere on the ship. Our steward Clive was extremely attentive, and each time we had room service, we felt very important. The little portable table kept behind the sofa is quite handy, and so even room service was served as though we were in a fancy hotel or restaurant. We had a bottle of Glenlivet, my husband's drink of choice, waiting for us in the suite when we arrived, and within a couple of hours, my requested bottle of Bombay Sapphire showed up. I'm still at a loss as to why Clive knocked on the door on day 2 or 3 with a bottle of B & B. The only time that was mentioned was tongue-in-cheek on Regent's CC discussion board. I can only surmise someone was paying attention, and it was a case of "why did the little lamb love Mary?" Which reminds me. . .why did the little lamb love Mary? Well, at the risk of discounting your memory and/or intelligence, it was because Mary loved the little lamb. That simple. Indulge me for a brief soapbox interlude, please. When we travel, we generally find great service everywhere, not every time, but most times. My husband and I enjoy engaging people and we never miss an opportunity to thank people sincerely for their efforts and hard work. I try to remember service people's names and use their names when I see them. . .I mean genuinely use their name. After all, they seem to go to the trouble to remember lots of customers' names, so would it trouble me to remember a few of theirs? We found that every time we threw a great big glad-to-see-you smile at Eduardo, Yuri, Alberto, Mara, Daniella, etc., etc. we got it back, ear to ear. I could go on and on, but I won't. Aren't you glad? I could say much more about the crew, but rather than be repetitious in this already too long review, I would direct you to the comments I've already made about the crew beginning with post #173 (see link above) as I was posting live from the ship. Not to discount anyone's experience, because it was what it was for that person, but honestly, when I have read negative reviews about the Navigator, I can't help but assume it had to do with the time of year (too many kids on board), itinerary, something, anything other than individual crew members or Regent or the ship. I'm simply baffled. Our experience was luxurious, as it should have been for the cost, and the little things were made even bigger by the crew and the overall experience. Would I sail Regent again? In a heart beat. Send me a lottery ticket. Maybe this once I'll get lucky. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
My husband and I were on the 8/17/11 northbound Alaskan cruise on the Navigator. Previous to this cruise we had gone on 3 other cruises, all with 1800+ passengers. We will probably never go on another cruise on a large ship. We found the ... Read More
My husband and I were on the 8/17/11 northbound Alaskan cruise on the Navigator. Previous to this cruise we had gone on 3 other cruises, all with 1800+ passengers. We will probably never go on another cruise on a large ship. We found the Navigator large enough to have or own "space" but small enough to easily make new friends over the course of the cruise. We felt like we were all part of the same "club". We had 5 days (out of 7) of RAIN. We were prepared as most everyone was and just kept going. We were happy at the end of a soggy day to return to our "home", the Navigator. Here are some of our other thoughts. Remember, everything is subjective. Food: Pros: We thought the food was very good. We always found something that we liked. I am a casual gal and loved the pool grill for lunch. Compass Ross and La Veranda were good for dinner. Con: We were not that impressed with Prime 7. We were tired and the waiters seemed tired and dismissive. Next time we will go back to the Compass Rose instead. Drinks: Loved the all inclusive policy. It made the atmosphere much more laid back social. People would join one another and make a new friend in this atmosphere. If you wanted to be alone, this was fine also. Stateroom: The balcony staterooms are so well laid out. The walk in closet makes it so easy to stay organized. I also loved having a tub. Entertainment: ??? We were too tired after our days exploring to make it. Embarkation/Debarkation: Well organized and easy. Ending thought: Starting the trip leaving beautiful Vancouver while the sun was shining was a great way to start our cruise. Ending the trip with an amazing view of Hubbard Glacier calving was a wondering way to end it. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Regent Seven Seas Navigator - Vancouver to Anchorage, August 3-10, 2011. What a surprise! We not only drilled every one of our friends, but anyone we could find who'd been cruising to Alaska and prepared...prepared...prepared. We ... Read More
Regent Seven Seas Navigator - Vancouver to Anchorage, August 3-10, 2011. What a surprise! We not only drilled every one of our friends, but anyone we could find who'd been cruising to Alaska and prepared...prepared...prepared. We bought new rain suits(because the wind and rain could pop up at any moment and assault us!), new sturdy deck shoes (because someone saw a passenger slip and fall on exiting the ship for an excursion!), new fleece-lined jackets with hoods (to protect us from biting cold!) But what happened was remarkable. It was the trip of NO. No rain, no wind, no accidents. We boarded Navigator after a nice day in Vancouver. We took the advice of others and toured Vancouver on the Hop-on/Hop-off bus. A great way to see Stanley Park and other places in the city. Our concierge at Sutton Place Hotel arranged dinner at the Blue Water Cafe in Yaletown (absolutely fabulous!). Sutton Place is a nice enough hotel and the transfers to and from were efficient and thorough. If you need a quick shopping fix, or forget something critical, go to Pacific Centre on Georgia Street. A fabulous young woman at Sephora helped me choose a moisturizer...did you know there's so little humidity in the Pacific Northwest?? Holt-Renfrew, H&M, Apple, the Gap are all there. Cruising out of Vancouver is a treat in itself. The city is stunning and the site of floatplanes and other cruise ships exiting the harbor is terrific. The narration of the harbor by Terry Breen was very educational. We made a pact to return to Vancouver in the future as a stand alone destination. Dinner in La Veranda the first night so that we can hang out a little longer on the deck and see the sites. Dinner choices are extensive, but the highlight is the sushi and fresh seafood. Hey, we're from Northern Michigan, so we're used to Perch and Whitefish, but those shrimp are yummy and the sushi soooo fresh. Our window suite is terrific. A bottle of Bouvet Brut is chilling for us on arrival, in addition to a bowl of fresh fruit and a fridge loaded with soda, water and beer. No balcony, which we were advised we wouldn't need. We disagree. We would spring for it next time. Navigator has limited public outdoor space, so a balcony is a treat, especially in good weather, which we had. We staked out lounge chairs outside the Gallileo Lounge almost everyday and had a spectacular view off the stern. There are overhead heaters and substantial wool blankets for feeling cozy. Wake on day two still cruising. We are heading 294 degrees, speed 19 knots. It's 8:09 am and 54 degrees. My husband goes out the door and returns minutes later with two fresh lattes from the coffee bar on Deck 6. At 8:35 am I see a whale spout right in front of my window!! I'm a little turned off by paying the high internet fees....I check my email in the Internet Lounge for 12 minutes and incur a $9.00 charge. (Mental note to self....don't check email...you'll survive!) If you like to brush up on your knowledge of a place before you go....buy Terry Breen's book about the Inside Passage. It's very informative. I have mixed feelings about her presentation style. Sometimes I thought she was terrific and other times I felt like she was my fifth grade teacher, but overall I'd recommend her. Dinner at Prime 7 - so..so. My husband's steak was overdone and my lobster was tough. The room is intimate and service exceptional. We preferred Compass Rose to Prime 7. This was the only might we did not have a window seat. I cannot tell you how great a window seat is....we literally saw an eagle swoop down, catch a fish and fly feet from our dining window in Ketchikan. Always ask the maitre d for a window seat! Ketchikan is sunny and warm! No rain! Although the town is a tourist trap, the thing to do here is get out of town. We did a Flight Seeking Tour with a Crabfest at George Inlet. It was fabulous. The pilot looked like he was 13, but was clearly very capable. The lunch at George Inlet....to die for! All you could eat Dungeness Crab and such a quaint location. Dinner in Compass Rose, after dinner drinks in Gallileo (favorite bartender - Elvis and waiter - Alvin). Tracy Arm - all I can say is OMG. This is spectacular. We went up to the 11th deck, got some coffee and just were in awe. A separate excursion is available via a small boat to go deeper into the fjord. We didn't do it, but it was still awesome. We found out later, via You Tube that an excursion boat got too close to a calving glacier and a passenger got hurt. Juneau - what a dump! Now I know why some Alaskans want to move the capital elsewhere. We found the town too commercial, touristy and not very attractive. We went to Mendenhal Glacier and enjoyed the Visitor's Center. The Salmon Hatchery and GardenTour were awful. The tiny State Museum was good, but the tour bus driver said we had to blast through it in 30 minutes. I think overall we just picked a bad excursion. Other passengers had reported spectacular days doing dog sledding, fly fishing and whale watching. Our boo-boo. After another fabulous dinner in Compass Rose we take in the sunset off the stern and take in some of the show. We're not big on the entertainment, but enjoy the final couple of nights which are amazing - kudos to Ray (Cruise Director) and the crew show - very good. Skagway - outstanding tour on the White Pass Railroad. As it is stunningly beautiful - sunny and mild, we get excellent pictures. Do yourself a favor and DO NOT eat at the Bonanza in town. Yikes...bad food. First bad experience in a town so far. Touristy shops, not a whole lot to do, but the National Park office is well done. On board another good meal in Compass Rose and sailing out of Skagway is beautiful. Sitka - another fabulous town. Fans of the Sandra Bullock movie "The Proposal" will not recognize the town depicted in the film (Apparently they filmed it in Massachusetts). Anyway it's a great town. We really enjoyed our tour with a native Tlingit. He took us to the Raptor Center to see rescued Eagles and Owls and to the two museums in town. Dining Alert - stay away from the Westmark hotel restaurant. Yikes! Food was overcooked, slow service. To their credit, the manager apologized and gave us our meal for no charge. Hubbard Glacier - hard to say, but I think this was my favorite morning of the trip. The majesty of this site is hard to describe. We were on deck for over two hours and loved every minute. Terry Breen redeemed herself to me on this narration with her knowledge of Glaciers. We saw the most spectacular calvings. Totally awesome. The greatest thing about Navigator....after seeing nature's wonder, you go in a get a non-fat latte and breakfast in Compass Rose. Wake up in Seward and want to stay. Whine a little as room service arrives promtly at 6:30 am. Breakfast is blah. Toast is hard as a rock and no butter. Eggs are okay, oatmeal fine. Coffee hot. Maybe it's just my mood? Swift, efficient disembarkation process. Bus trip to Anchorage a real snore. The driver has the personality of a doorknob. Anchorage is also blah. We should have rented a car or a plane or something to get out of town. Our flight doesn't depart 'til almost midnight (due to delays). The room booked by Regent for guest awaiting flights is an unused rooftop space at the Anchorage Hilton. Coffee is not replenished, water and ice run out quickly. Do yourself a favor and get away from the Hilton! We have a fabulous dinner at the Glacier Brewhouse before departing Be aware - they are serious when they say they have 60-90 minute waits for a table. Overall - would we cruise Regent to Alaska again? Yes. Absolutely. What I recommend: 1. Take a wide variety of clothes. You'll experience 70's to down to the 40's. Maybe some rain and certainly some wind. At night it's nice to dress up a bit. We saw people wearing rugged clothes like they were going into the wilderness even at dinner. Not necessary. You're on a lovely, elegant cruise ship. In the evening, it's fun to dress up just a little. 2. Don't be afraid to book high octane excursions. We were wimps and booked indoor and low activity excursions because we were afraid of rain and wind. Dumb. We should have booked more whale, otter, kayak and helicopter trips. 3. Have fun. Go to lectures, entertainment shows, hang out on the Gallileo deck, go to Trivia and Kareoke. 4. Meet the staff. They're pretty cool. We had the pleasure of dining with Michael, the General Manager. A first class guy. Ray was also a treat. Capt. McNeil a hoot - especially in his kilt. Great trip....we're home and doing laundry. We're ready to go again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Before I start, I want to state that I do not normally complain and generally find that you have to go with the flow on any ship as things can and do go wrong. We have been taking cruise holidays for 10+ years both with and without our ... Read More
Before I start, I want to state that I do not normally complain and generally find that you have to go with the flow on any ship as things can and do go wrong. We have been taking cruise holidays for 10+ years both with and without our family. This was our first Regent cruise heading towards Alaska from Vancouver on the 8th June and as we are used to larger ships in the RC, Celebrity and Cunard fleet is was nice to walk straight onboard the Navigator get our sea pass cards and then be shown to our room by our cabin steward. Our stateroom was Suite 905 near the front starboard side. As we were unpacking the cruise director announced there would be a block party, which we had never heard of before and was a nice way to meet the neighbours in the corridor with a glass of wine in your hand. The Captain and senior crew along with the Cruise Director dashed around to each deck to introduce themselves. All very good so far and clearly different to other cruise lines. From this point onwards our view of Regent changed and took a dive downwards. Firstly we had very high expectations as it had been sold as a 6* cruise line and first impressions of the public areas and our suite were not quite up to the mark. The Navigator is over ten years old and looked both tired and poorly maintained, however we did not want to come to any hasty conclusions so we went for a walk around the ship to get accustomed to the layout. We noticed that the external woodwork, paintwork all needed attention, the glass/windows on most decks was dirty and especially on the Compass Rose main restaurant (more on this later). The dEcor is all browns and wood with stained carpet and our shower had cracked tiles and mouldy grout and sealant (see photo) Lunch in La Veranda was awful, the presentation of the food was poor, the service was slow, indifferent and you had to wait to get the attention of the staff to get even a glass of water. There were certainly enough staff but no one was keen to help. Now we know that first day lunches can always be a bit noisy and cramped but this was far worse. We did try the La Veranda restaurant again for breakfast and lunch later in the cruise and the service was the same each time, we never bothered again and stayed in the Compass Rose main dining room. The food, service and ambience in the Compass Rose was good but nothing special. We had an experience of finding the end of a latex glove in my wife's curry about half way through the cruise. Although taken seriously, an apology was only provided after we had chased the issue with the Customer Service desk. Compensation was reluctantly provided as a bottle of wine. Now you are probably aware that all drinks are included when on board so although we are not big drinkers a glass or two of good wine with our meal would have been nice. On each night there was a different red and white serving wine, which on 90% of time was so bad we had to buy from the wine list. I may be a little fussier about my wine than most people but the poor quality of the wine had not escaped the notice of our fellow passengers. About halfway through the cruise we were all given questionnaires to fill in about our experiences to date. This was heavily pushed by the Cruise Director and General Manager so we filled it in and put down both good and bad points as follows; Good 1. Butler and Cabin Attendant 2. Compass Rose food and service 3. Free films included on TV channels 4. Spa/Gym - good for a small ship Bad 1. The price of UK booked tours and excursions and those available in dollars on board was about 40% higher. e.g Grand Alaskan train from Seward to Anchorage at the end of the cruise was the same price in Sterling as it was in Dollars. 2. Our shower was giving out only a trickle of water, shower drain blocked and toilet blocked. 3. Windows in Compass Rose are filthy. 4. La Veranda is crowded and poor service. 5. Coffee Barista surly and tried to fob us off with filter coffee when asked to provide an espresso. 6. House wines; Red generally poor, had to buy off wine list No one answered, replied, questioned or even acknowledged any of these issues and the only way they were resolved (especially the shower remembering we are on day 4 of a 7 day cruise) was by us chasing them. With regard to the excursions we tried to book them six months in advance but most of the good ones were already full, so you go on a wait list. During the cruise we found out that the tour descriptions we often wrong and inaccurate so it all became pot luck. What is the point of having them included if you can't do what you want and then when you do get something its not what they describe in the booklet. It seems you could also do more than one tour a day, but this meant that most of did not get what we wanted. Back to the windows in Compass Rose. They were filthy so you could not see out of them. As we were on an Alaska cruise and everyone is looking for whales, dolphins and seals is sort of the main attraction during dinner. What happened is that the following day to our filling out the questionnaire the dockside windows were cleaned and the other side left dirty for the rest of the trip. I very much doubt I was the reason anything was done. In the end our shower valve was replaced and the drain cleared out so we had a working shower. Surely someone would have noticed this on previous trips. Again it only go sorted as I chased and 5 days into the cruise we had a shower in the cubicle instead of crouching in the bath. Entertainment was good, although maybe biased to an older crowd as they kept dwelling on the 1940's! Actually the best night was the last night when the staff did a sort of cabaret and all the Elvis impersonators come out the engine room. You maybe thinking that I have not mentioned the ports. They were as expected and a bit like stops you get in the Caribbean, lots of cheap T-Shirts and souvenirs but little else unless you go father afield. There is of course the rain and overall we were very lucky with the weather. I took a photo of my questionnaires and emailed them to Regent. The Customer Service Manager in the UK only called me when told to do so by our Agent. We discussed the issues and how disappointed we were. He told me that according to their surveys responses 96% of people were happy and I had to assume by this that he meant I was an awkward anomaly. I did talk to many other passengers and realised that a large percentage were first time cruisers so if you tell them this is 6* cruising then what else do they have to compare it against. We were offered $200 off a future cruise. My only conclusion is that Regent used to be a great Cruise Line with many loyal customers. In my very humble opinion I understand that Private Equity has now moved in and I guess changed the ethos of the original business to the extent that passengers are far less important. Regent Cruises are expensive and mis-sold as 6*, we will never cruise with Regent ever again and have just cancelled a trip on Oceania. Not because we know anything about them, but due to the fact that they are a sister company and I will not pay money to them again. Here are my 10 reasons to avoid Regent; 1. Navigator is a poorly maintained ship with variable service 2. Regents claim of being 6* would be 4* at best in my books 3. There is no value in having wine included if its of poor quality 4. The excursions booking is all pot luck 5. Don't trust the descriptions of the excusions 6. La Veranda is the worst "canteen" we have ever experienced on a ship 7. UK purchases are 40% higher than those made in the USA in dollars 8. Don't bother to complain unless you want to chase them all throughout the cruise to get matters resolved 9. Check your food for bits of latex glove 10. You will not get anything resolved on your return Save yourself a lot of money and aggravation and find another cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
If Regent Seven Seas had only made a couple of minor errors I wouldn't be writing this review but our experience was one of incompetence and disinterest in customer service from booking to stepping ashore at the end of the trip. The ... Read More
If Regent Seven Seas had only made a couple of minor errors I wouldn't be writing this review but our experience was one of incompetence and disinterest in customer service from booking to stepping ashore at the end of the trip. The good news is that the ship is fine (and there are only 500 other people), the service and food is excellent (but four or five stars, not seven) and the scenery is superb. The butler and maid that came with our suite were both delightful but I wouldn't pay the premium. The bad news is the hassle of dealing with Regent. They just don't get it when it comes to customer service. To start with, as first timers, we took their brochure literally - ie that all shore excursions are included. No they aren't. Many or most of them are chargeable and at a significant premium to what you would actually pay locally. Sorting out excursions took at least five phone calls and as many emails - largely because their web site isn't up to making changes. Booking dinner in the premium restaurant (only once allowed per voyage) for a birthday was another struggle; again their website didn't work on the day that bookings opened and by the following day the restaurant was full on the evening of the birthday we wanted to celebrate so more phone calls and emails. Arriving at Vancouver airport we weren't on the list for hotel transfers nor did they believe we had paid for them. We insisted they check; they insisted we produce paperwork as proof. Eventually they accepted their error. Not a good start. Then towards the end of the week we discovered that they didn't have us booked on the correct shore excursions (despite a printed confirmation) and these were now full. Finally they booked us on the wrong departure schedule despite confirming it in advance. None of these in isolation would have been a problem but in every case the initial response was "no" rather than "how can we fix this for you". It seemed to be a pervasive attitude that it was my problem to live with, not theirs to fix. Maybe it is the cruise industry or maybe we had unreasonable expectations but we won't travel with Regent again until and unless they sort this out. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
Boarding the ship and check-in was a breeze. No lines, no hassles and we got our ID cards along with our champagne. Lunch around the pool area was salads, burgers and dogs. The was open and since this was an cruise without additional cost ... Read More
Boarding the ship and check-in was a breeze. No lines, no hassles and we got our ID cards along with our champagne. Lunch around the pool area was salads, burgers and dogs. The was open and since this was an cruise without additional cost for alcohol, a few people tried and succeeded in drinking multiple days worth of booze in one sitting before being admitted into their suites. The suites are huge. The walk-in closet and the nearly standard sized bathroom were just great. The staff was there to introduce themselves and the orders for the refrigerator stocks were placed - all very efficient. The event of having everyone around the ship go into the hallways and have a ship-wide cocktail and welcome party was a great ice breaker. The captain and principal members of the crew came to us and introduced themselves - a very nice touch. We spent more than an hour getting to know our neighbors, before the dreaded, mandatory safety muster. We were also able to get a load of laundry done and iron all of our clothes that were now unpacked. Departure from Vancouver was on time and the ride out of the harbor afforded many great views of the city and Stanley Park. Exhausted from a day of walking Vancouver and being a bit tipsy, we decided to get a pizza and other snacks delivered to the room. The serviced was prompt and the food well prepared. The days are very long during June and we were off for a cruise day along the Inside Passage. Early in the morning of our first day, we had breakfast delivered to the room (which arrived exactly as advertised and was well prepared) and went to the spa to workout. Noble, the health program manager, was fantastic. We signed up for personal training sessions and multiple workout regimes that were offered. The spa had plenty of equipment and treatment rooms along with steam and sauna rooms proved to be invaluable throughout the cruise. After breakfast and an hour on gym machines, we spotted our first pod of humpback whales and later that morning dolphins riding the wake of the ship. Alaska weather is mostly wet and 60 degrees, so the views from the ship on the cruise day were limited by the cloud cover. Buffet lunch in La Veranda was nice because we were able to sit above the stern and the wind was not an issue on the overcast day. Also, large overhead space heaters kept things nice and cozy on the deck for lunch. The buffet choices were small compared to cruises we have had with Crystal and Azamara, but it met our needs. Service at the tables was impeccable as it was the day before around the pool. We spent a quiet day cruising and playing bingo along the Inside Passage and enjoyed dinner (from the menu) in the Compass Rose main dining room where we met fellow cruisers at our open table. The service, preparation, presentation and quality were comparable to Azamara. Portions were correct and unlimited alcohol was available. The sommelier visited our table more than once to attend to our needs. Our evening meal was capped off with cordials and another display from a pod of humpback whales. We were not interested in the evening activities and were able to review our planned activities for first port, Ketchikan, from the TV and the delivered, printed materials in our room. After our workout in the gym in the morning, the Compass Rose restaurant was the place for a quiet breakfast where they even asked what level of doneness I wanted for my poached eggs. In my 60 years of ordering poached eggs, I have never been asked that question. Needless to say, they came out exactly as I requested. The first "free" excursion we took was the Lumberjack Show. We knew it would be corny and it was. It was fun just to sit and admire their skills, while laughing at their set-up jokes. Sometimes it is just good to let your pretentiousness down and laugh like a loon over corny jokes. Rain is the most abundant item in Ketchikan with over 200 inches having fallen in the season so far, so hiding out in bars and jewelry stores is a favorite pastime of visitors. We had lunch by the pool again with service that was first rate and courteous - burgers, fries and dogs. We can't beat that for simple and good. Our second "free" excursion was a seaplane ride to Misty Fjord. The plane flies low and close to the scenery and then lands in the fjord. We were able to walk on the pontoons of the plane before returning to Ketchikan. It was well narrated by the pilot and a beautiful trip. We departed out of Ketchikan about 4 pm and had dinner delivered to the room where we spent five hours admiring the serene and near glass-like water conditions of the cruise north. Delicious chicken and salad dishes were prepared to our request and a bottle of wine finished off the evening. The rain went away and the sun reflected off the water like a mirrored surface. Picture postcard views from our balcony caused us to skip the evening entertainment for the second night. When Mother Nature is putting on a show, man made entertainment cannot compete. As we travel north to Juneau, we placed our breakfast order for a 6:30 delivery. It was on time and perfect. Our first "paid" excursion was a Wildlife Quest catamaran trip to the Tracy Fjord that met alongside the cruise ship to transfer passengers. The Navigator continued into Juneau while we took the side trip and caught up to the main group in six hours. The Catamaran took us to the North and South Sawyer Glaciers. We saw seals, whales and bald eagles. Many beautiful icebergs were in the Fjord. We got right up the face of the glacier and watched calving. It was one of the highlight excursions of the cruise. Once in Juneau, we took a Mendenhall Glacier and Evening Whale watching (paid) tour. Our guide, Diane, from Gastineau Guiding, was very informative as we did a short wilderness walk at the glacier. Later, we boarded a speedy boat and went looking for whales. The captain found about eight adult Humpbacks and one baby Humpback feeding. We had a wonderful time watching them breach and dive. We also saw seals and bald eagles. We got back on the ship around 9 pm and had room service for dinner on our balcony as we departed Juneau to a wonderful sunset, skipping the evening entertainment in the Lounge. The cruise into Skagway is beautiful and should not be missed. Once again, we ordered breakfast for early delivery after a workout at the gym. We took the "free" White Pass train ride and it was spectacular. Many beautiful vistas along the way and we got to learn about the Yukon gold rush and all the hardships of the men who tried to get rich from the fields (some 500 miles away). We saw a mother bear and two little cubs right next to the tracks near the summit. We even saw the original Yukon trail which is still intact at the pass. We grabbed a quick hamburger lunch in the Compass Rose restaurant and it was delicious. The staff was great. We took an afternoon "free" walking tour through Skagway that explained the bawdy times of the madams and hookers of the gold rush times. Our departure out of Skagway was gorgeous, we spent hours on our balcony with champagne as the weather was warm and we had a late dinner at Compass Rose. Every seat at every table was taken and the staff performed impeccably. Our meal was served perfectly and prepared as we requested. The entire staff from the sommelier, head waiter, busboys and waiter visited our table and exchanged pleasantries, even though the place was packed, they all took time to visit and chat with all the tables. It was a very impressive performance by the professionals of the Compass Rose both in the kitchen and in the room. We chose not to attend the Cirque at the evening show, because we were going strong for about 16-18 each day and needed to catch up on some sleep. We arrived at Sitka. After a workout and steam at the spa, we had breakfast at the pool area. We enjoyed champagne and mimosas for breakfast as a reward for good health practices. We took a "free" sea otter boat trip and saw hundreds of sea otters, a bear along the beach, bald eagles, California Gray whale adults & newborns and a few adult Humpback whales feeding. Overall, this excursion was really very good. We docked at the ship landing at Sitka. We had lunch at an Italian place in Sitka. That afternoon, we took another "free" tour. This was a boat that had viewing windows below deck. It was a total waste of time. The water is green murky and one cannot see anything in the water. We left Sitka and ate in our room with service brought to our balcony. We enjoyed the warm climate until sunset, once again getting rid of two bottles of champagne. The final "port" before disembarking was Glacier Bay where we saw the Hubbard Glacier. It is a very pretty entrance to the bay and we had morning workout and then breakfast in our room with a bottle of champagne. We spun around the Hubbard Glacier and took photos. It is not as impressive as the Sawyer or Mendenhall Glaciers since you can't get close and it does not "calf" large chunks of ice. The day was quite chilly and overcast so we mostly stayed indoors and watched a number of on-demand movies on the TV. In the evening, we ate at the specialty restaurant on board and had a wonderful meal expertly prepared and professionally served. After a few night caps, we slept until we disembarked at Seward at 7am. There are a number of ways to get to Anchorage from Seward. We chose a private taxi service; PJ's Taxi and Renee provided us lots of interesting side trips on our way to the airport. The bus from the ship gets you to the airport around 11:30 am and the train gets there later. The prices are not reasonable for any of the three options, so pricing all the options is a smart thing to do. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
Had a fantastic time on this ship and felt that staff catered for our every wish. The free tours were excellent and we paid a little more to go on a few trips on a helicopter to land on a glacier and in the fjords on a small sea plane. ... Read More
Had a fantastic time on this ship and felt that staff catered for our every wish. The free tours were excellent and we paid a little more to go on a few trips on a helicopter to land on a glacier and in the fjords on a small sea plane. The food was of a very high standard and we enjoyed the shows. The best things was that with Regents everything is excluded . It was nice not to have to think of how much a bar bill will be and how much to tip all the time. A nice touch is that they welcome you with a bottle of champagne in your extremely spacious suite. They also ask what drinks you prefer in your cabin fridge. The king sized bed is very comfortable with top class linens and the bathroom has a shower and a bath with top toiletries. The wardrobe is a walk in and the TV has lots of free films and boxsets. The reason we went on this ship in the first place was that it was not too big only having about 480 passengers so you don't have to wait too long to get on tenders and feel too lost in a crowd.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
I would like to share with you my review of our cruise to Alaska aboard the Regent Seven Seas Navigator. This was our first ever cruise and while my husband lived in Alaska years ago, it was my first visit to Alaska. The two-for-one deals ... Read More
I would like to share with you my review of our cruise to Alaska aboard the Regent Seven Seas Navigator. This was our first ever cruise and while my husband lived in Alaska years ago, it was my first visit to Alaska. The two-for-one deals and the all inclusive nature of the cruise made it very affordable and I am very glad that we made the decision to go the luxury route. From the moment we arrived at Canada Place in Vancouver to boarding, we were made to feel special. The line for the HAL ship was quite long but we were asked if we were cruising with Regent and then we were ushered to a non-existent line and from then until boarding we did not wait more than 10 minutes. We boarded at about 12 noon and made our way to check in, where we were offered champagne, and then to La Veranda for lunch. This buffet is like no other I have ever encountered. The food was fresh and delicious. After lunch we explored the ship as we waited for our suite to become ready. Just a little after 2:00PM they announced they we could see our suite (#945) and we found all our luggage waiting for us. I spent the next couple of hours watching a free movie (Alice In Wonderland) from a large selection of free movies and unpacking and decorating our suite for our 50th birthdays. My husband was celebrating his 50th on the 9th and I was the following day. After getting settled we dressed up for sail away and joined our fellow cruisers on the upper forward deck. The weather was beautiful and warm and we immediately started making friends. I was pleased to see a mix of ages and everyone was very friendly. I told my husband that it must be because everyone was so darned happy to be there. After sail away we returned to La Veranda for a Prime Rib dinner that was melt-in-your-mouth good. We were off to a spectacular start. The next day we awoke to a rather gray sky but no rain. Neither of us experienced any problems with seasickness, I was taking Bonine every day at bedtime and my husband was taking nothing after feeling "foggy" from the Bonine. The inside passage seas were very calm which I am sure helped us get our sea legs. The Bonine (Dramamine Non-Drowsy) also gave me the great benefit of deep sleep. It worked for me. I also had ginger candy and Sea Bands, just in case. Never needed them. We spent the day having breakfast at La Veranda, which became our habit, enjoying the scenery, setting up our internet connection, writing a brief blog and having lunch with our Cruise Critic Roll Call friends at Compass Rose. This restaurant served you after ordering and the food was also very, very good. I had an amazing shrimp and avocado sandwich. We were offered a white or red wine, beer, soda or juice and there was no check to sign. It was strange getting up and leaving the table without figuring out the tip. Fantastic! We ordered dinner in our suite and strolled around the deck where we saw WHALES! There was whale blow all around us and there must have been about 20 Humpback Whales all around the ship. A few got very close, it was really exciting as I had never seen whales in the wild before. We then called it an early night as we were heading for... Ketchikan We arrived early in the morning and there was a light rain falling. This was completely expected and really a nice change from our 90 degree summer back home. We dressed for the weather and after an in-suite (24-hour room service) breakfast of fabulous bacon and scrambled eggs, fresh melon, fried potatoes and fresh squeezed orange juice and coffee, we headed into town for some shopping. The stores were open very early and we bought a bunch of things which we had shipped home for a coupon price of $9.99. Then we explored Creek St. and the creek was at low tide. There were many salmon present, dead and alive, and the smell was intense. We visited Dolly's House and took the tour. "Dale" gave us a great history, with jokes included, and we enjoyed this tour. Well worth the $3.50 each. We then made our way back to the ship to prepare for our first (free) excursion arranged by Regent, a Cruise of George Inlet & Crab Feast. I chose this excursion especially for my birthday because I LOVE crab. The rain had stopped but the sky remained cloudy as we boarded the bus for the George Inlet Lodge. There we boarded enclosed party boats which took us on a short cruise to where the crab pots were located. I volunteered to pull up the crab pot (a nice birthday memory). We received a lesson on identifying crab and crabbing in general. The weather cleared and the sun came out! It was really nice. On the way back we spotted a few harbor seals, and a young eagle. The guides were very nice, informative and very funny. We left them a tip onboard. At the George Inlet Lodge we all found tables and were served a crab feast to end all crab feasts. A glass of wine or soda was also included. Large, heaping, steaming bowls of fresh dungeness crab. I was in heaven. I especially enjoyed the ladies who brought us constant refills of melted butter. Along with our tablemates, we competed in a contest to create the highest mound of crab shells. This is when we coined the term, "crabalanche". We finished with a really great piece of blueberry topped cheesecake. My husband, who is not a big fan of crab, was served a cajun styled chicken breast. As we boarded the bus back to the ship it began to rain again. We found a table at the Pool Grill where we enjoyed a few drinks with our new friends. We had dinner at La Veranda and, once again, fell into a deep sleep to the rocking of the ship. The next day was... Tracy Arm & Juneau The skies were completely clear this morning as we woke up approaching Tracy Arm. We bundled up because it was really cold and quite windy up on deck. This fjord rivals those in Norway, that is what Terry Breen told us as she narrated our approach. We spent the next few hours marveling at the amazing scenery and enjoying the serenity and silence of the fjord. We did not choose to take a separate catamaran excursion which took people much deeper into the fjord and within view of the Sawyer Glacier. The Navigator went as far as the waterfall and then made a slow turn and sailed out of the fjord. We sailed into a fog bank and heard the fog horns as we headed to La Veranda for breakfast. By the time we arrived in Juneau the sun was out and the day much warmer. We had lunch at the Pool Grill and then walked around the town for awhile. I thought the prices here were higher and we closed the purse strings. We headed back to the ship and boarded our bus for our free excursion, a Native Canoe Adventure at Mendenhall Glacier. We boarded 12 man canoes (no motors allowed on the lake) and paddled up very close to the face of the glacier. Our guides were personable and friendly and gave us lots of good information. We also stopped at Nugget Falls which was spectacular as well. We had a snack before paddling back to the beach for the bus ride back to the ship. We ate at Compass Rose for dinner which was great and a night cap at the Galileo Lounge and early to bed because tomorrow we head for... Skagway On this day we awoke to clear skies! We were up early and decided to have an early breakfast and then walk the 1/2 mile into town. Most of the stores were closed and since we were the only ship in port, we had the town to ourselves except for some locals in a small cafe. We found one open store, a Russian American store, here we spent a bunch again on some really special things like a classic Russian style winter hat and Russian nesting dolls. The clerk here was really nice and we enjoyed listening to him talk in his slight Russian accent. We headed back to the ship and at the small boat harbor we saw OTTERS! I LOVE otters! There was a group of 5 or 6 of them playing on the dock and swimming amongst the boats. We took pictures and laughed as we made kissing noises and called them. They would turn and look right at us. We then went aboard and prepared for our free excursion, Zip Lines! This was my favorite excursion. Here the guides took very careful care of us and we felt safe and secure always. We really bonded with our fellow zip liners and we cheered each other on. We made fast friends here and on return to the ship we enjoyed a late lunch and drinks with them at the Pool Grill. After resting up and sail away, we had dinner with our roll call friends at Compass Rose. Another fantastic, perfect day! How could it be better? Oh, it was, next was... Sitka The dawn at Sitka revealed a charming town with lovely island homes, Russian influenced buildings and churches and a blindingly bright beautiful sunny day. After breakfast at La Veranda (loved the Chef here, Martin Jordan) we took a tender (small boat hung on the side of the ship) into port and we headed off for some serious shopping. Again we splurged and decided to have our purchases shipped home rather than trying to fit it all into our luggage. We met up with our free excursion for this day, The Sea Life Discovery Tour, and boarded a semi-submersible boat. They took us out for a view of a really green, murky sea floor where we saw starfish, a crab, small fish and lots of sea grass. This was a bit boring so we went up on the outside deck and enjoyed views of a Kelp Forest from above. The day was spectacular and it was really nice being out in the sun. We went back down for the divers who took cameras deeper and showed us many more fish and sea life. One diver scared me silly when he popped up in my window with a giant multi-legged starfish. They were very entertaining. After the undersea part we had a very informative, top deck ride, back to the harbor where we boarded the tender back to the ship. We stopped at the Pool Grill for lunch and headed to our cabin to prepare for a special dinner with 7 new friends. The food was good although I did not particularly like the soup. After dinner we went to the only show we saw which was a Navigator version of Cirque De Soleil and was very well done. After the show I decided to try my luck on the slots as my husband headed back to the suite. After just a few pulls I was ahead $15.00 and that was it for me. I rarely win so I always give up when I am ahead. When I arrived back at the suite I stepped out on our balcony and was shocked and amazed to see a huge display of the Aurora Borealis!! It was not very colorful but it stretched all the way across the sky with rays of light shooting upwards. Fantastic. I immediately returned to the casino where I told my friends to come see and I promptly emptied most of the casino as everyone headed up on deck to see. With a less than 10% chance, how lucky were we? I could not believe that the next day was the day we would visit the famous... Hubbard Glacier We were up very early and bundled up for the cold to another spectacular day. The dawn was incredibly beautiful as we cruised into Yakutat Bay and watched the sun come up and illuminate the magnificent mountains all around us. As we approached Hubbard Glacier the mountains and the glacier became larger and larger. There was very little ice (another blessing) and we were able to get very close to the face of this 6 mile long glacier. We concentrated on 3 miles of it and watched calving of the 350 foot face and listened to the amazing sounds a glacier makes. Cracking, booming and groaning, we were presented with quite the show. Terry Breen (our onboard cultural anthropologist and guide) was able to pinpoint where the ice would calve and she was right on! As the captain turned the ship around slowly we made our way down to the suite as the decks were packed with everyone standing at the railings. We were treated to the best of the calving from the comfort of our balcony and caught all of it on rapid fire photos and video tape. It was awe inspiring and could not have been a better visit to this magnificent sight. Magical. We had a great BBQ lunch at the Pool Grill and started packing our bags. We dressed up extra nicely because this was our one night at the reservation required restaurant, Prime 7. I had a great full Maine Lobster and Brian had a New York Strip. The food was great but, honestly, it was no better or worse than all the other food we had onboard. All of it was awesome. We returned to the cabin, finished packing and set the bags outside to be picked up. It was sad to leave but we were anxious to head home to see our kids. The next day we rode the... Grandview Train to Anchorage After breakfast at La Veranda with many goodbyes and hugs for the staff and our friends we boarded the train right were we docked in Seward. The time passed quickly as we rode along through the fog, with some breaks for views of glaciers and Moose country. The only wildlife we saw was a Moose butt as it headed off into the fog and an eagle in a tree. Someone saw Dall Sheep but we missed them. The fog made it difficult. We arrived right at the Anchorage Airport where some went straight to their flights while a number of us with later flights we were bussed over to the Anchorage Hilton where Regent had booked the 15th floor Hospitality Suite for us to lounge in and enjoy coffee, tea and water while we waited for shuttles that left on the hour to take us back to the airport. Our flight was really late (10:50PM) but it was a non-stop flight and we could sleep on the way home. We spent some time walking around and getting a few last minute souvenirs (I got my Ulu Knife) and we had lunch at the Glacier Brewhouse. The food was great and they had wi-fi so we were able to Skype with our kids and see their happy faces for the first time since we left for Vancouver. The internet connection on the ship was slow and I only used it to upload short blogs each day. Once we returned to the Hilton a nice employee took pity on us a gave us the access code for the hotel wi-fi so were were able to connect from the Regent suite (like a large restaurant area with booths and tables) so everyone was checking their flights because they were concerned about the fog. Unfortunately, we were not able to enjoy the view from the 15th floor because of the fog. Eventually it was time to board the 7:00PM shuttle to the airport so we picked up our big luggage from a secured area and they loaded them on to a shuttle for us. It was a quick ride to the airport where we waited on briefly for Frontier to open their ticket counter and I weighed our 3 bags to find them 48.2 pounds, 49.1 pounds and exactly 50.0 pounds! Awesome! We were quickly through security and found a table at the Chili's Too restaurant where we spent an hour waiting for our flight. Then we headed over to the gate and boarded a full flight home. A perfect end to a perfect vacation. Overview Alaska is spectacular and amazing and I returned a changed person, for the better. Don't say "maybe"...GO! I cannot recommend it more highly. We very much enjoyed Terry Breen and we attended a couple of her lectures where we learned a lot. She really added to the entire experience with her narration over the loudspeakers, which never intruded on the peace and quiet of our suite. And what a suite it was, it was huge! The shower was huge and the bathtub was deep. Everything was new, clean and luxurious, great feather pillows! We never heard a neighbor or people in the hall. You can read our blog here: http://alaskacruise2010.shutterfly.com where we have posted about 175 pictures. I hope you like it. Feel free to comment or ask questions, I will check and respond. My husband said the only concern he had were loose screws in the suite but, with the vibration in the aft part of the ship, it is understandable. We were not bothered by the vibration, it is a ship after all. Some might find it bothersome though. I understand that mid-ships and lower decks it was not as noticeable, if at all. We really enjoyed the intimacy of a smaller ship (490 passengers) and were very pleased that we rarely had a wait for anything. I was also impressed that I never heard the word "NO". Everyone was smiling and happy, including all the passengers. A special shout out and kudos to: Arul (with the great smile) and Jerel (who read my mind) at the Pool Grill, The Sommeliers, Daniella, Mykola and Plamen (The Bear), Headwaiter, Delfim Bento Couto and Hostess, Monique from Compass Rose. Anatoli Makaev in La Veranda who was very accommodating and my special friend, Waitress, Pornipa (Em). Our Steward, Augustin (thank you) and the Stewardess who greeted me each day so sweetly, Lorie. The Prime 7 Maitre D, Christiaan Du Plooy (great sense of humor) and especially the Chef, Martin Jordan who never failed to make me laugh. Thank you all for making our once-in-lifetime extra special and very memorable. We appreciate you and we miss you. We hope to see you again someday...soon. Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
Wednesday, June 30: I should preface this review with a disclaimer: we are not veteran cruisers. In fact we have taken only two cruises before this one and they were over 30 years ago in the Caribbean. Therefore take our opinions with a ... Read More
Wednesday, June 30: I should preface this review with a disclaimer: we are not veteran cruisers. In fact we have taken only two cruises before this one and they were over 30 years ago in the Caribbean. Therefore take our opinions with a large grain of salt. Our impression of Regent Seven Seas before we took our Alaska cruise was that it was a first class, luxury cruise line. Having now returned from our seven days aboard the Navigator, I am happy to report that that impression was absolutely correct. In fact, if anything the experience was better than I had expected. From the minute we were met at the Vancouver airport by Regent staff until we completed our trip in Seward, we were treated as if we were their most important guests (and in conversation with other cruisers, it seems that the other 488 passengers felt the same way). Our bus driver from the Vancouver airport to the dock gave us an entertaining overview of Vancouver as were in route and set the stage for the experience we were to have for the next week. After checking through U.S. customs at the port (after our one-hour stay in Canada!) we boarded the ship, were welcomed onboard with champagne and directed to the Seven Seas Lounge where we checked in and were invited to have lunch while our suites were being readied. Before going to lunch however, we stood in a short line at Prime 7 to see if we could change our on-line booked reservation to a different night and an earlier time. It was no problem to do so. (Tip: Don't be discouraged when you see on-line that all reservations have already been booked in Prime 7 or that all excursions are sold out; the ship obviously holds back a number of dining reservations and excursion seats to be given out on board. Also people change plans and cancel reservations after they get on board. We were able to book the popular Tracy Arm excursion on board even though the Regent web site had shown it sold out for weeks. One exception was the Bear Viewing on Prince of Wales Island which was not available although you could be put on a wait list in case of a cancellation.) After a buffet lunch in the Veranda Restaurant where we met the delightful Erkan, the Turkish assistant head waiter, we explored the ship. About 2:30 an announcement was made that we could proceed to our suites where we found our luggage waiting. In our suite a bottle of champagne (real champagne, not sparkling white wine as some Regent cruisers have found) awaited along with a plate of fresh fruit. We found the suite to be spacious, well-appointed and comfortable. The walk-in closet had plenty of space for our clothes and luggage with a variety of hangers and closet rods of varying heights; the large bathroom included a tub and a separate shower as well as ample shelves for toiletries; the king bed was very comfortable; the living area had a sofa, table with two chairs, a desk and desk chair; there was plenty of lighting and a number of American and European style electrical outlets; the balcony had two deck chairs and a table and proved to be one of our most popular places from which to watch the passing scenery. We were met in our suite by our delightful stewardess, Priscilla who asked if we preferred down or foam pillows, showed us how everything worked and promised to bring me a bar list so I could chose the two bottles of liquor that are provided for each suite. She also took our request for a different kind of beer, and extra Diet Coke and bottled water for our in-suite refrigerator. Priscilla made sure that our suite was always spotless and that anything that we wanted was promptly delivered. She also never failed to call us by name and ask if there was anything she could do for us every time we met in the passageway. We set sail on time with commentary by the ship's destination specialist, Terry Breen and were on our way to "The Great Land." Dinner tonight (and as it turned out, every night except for when we dined at Prime 7) was at Compass Rose. We found the food and the service here to be quite good as it was throughout the ship. We also found the complementary wines to be of good quality and were never tempted to pay for the premium wines that are available. (Tip: Erkan works here in the evenings and I would recommend asking to be seated in his section. If you want to thank him for something in Turkish, say "tay-shay-ku" and then tell him the bearded old guy from Atlanta who was on board June 30-July 7 gave you this tip.) After dinner we returned to our suite and collapsed as we were still on Atlanta time. Thursday, July 1: We spent this day at sea getting familiar with the ship, attending a destination lecture by the ship's resident Alaska expert, Terry Breen (who is excellent by the way; don't miss her talks) and making sure the bartenders knew how to make a proper Rob Roy (they did). We also attended a wine tasting that was one of the very few activities that was a bit disappointing. The wines were fine but the sound system continually malfunctioned and that seemed to rattle the head sommelier who was conducting the tasting. In the afternoon we enjoyed teatime and then attended the Captain's Welcome Reception before dinner and a show by the Jean Ann Ryan Singers and Dancers. I know that some have complained about the quality of the entertainment on the ship but we found it quite good. We especially enjoyed the performances of lead singers Eric Weaver and Lisa Clifford and the excellent Regent Signature Orchestra. Friday, July 2: We docked early in the morning in Ketchikan where, thanks to a clock setting snafu (Alaska is one hour earlier than Vancouver), we almost missed our first excursion, Bear Viewing on Prince of Wales Island. Thanks goodness we made it because this turned out to be one of the highlights of our cruise. We took off in our float plane and in minutes were over scenic Prince of Wales Island. Our pilot was an excellent guide as we learned about the history of the island and its flora and fauna. We spotted deer, eagles and bear during our flight, including two bears that were mating on a mountainside! Our pilot had never before seen this and he circled around three times so everyone could get a good look. We landed on small lakes twice and were able to get very close to a bear on the shore of one of them. Our pilot landed, killed the engine and then asked one of us to steer the plane as he went out of one of the pontoons to paddle the plane closer to the bear. The rest of us were able to step out on the pontoons to take photos. (Tip: Excursions are not always exactly as described in the advance cruise materials although an updated list of descriptions is provided . In this case, the description said that we would land once and then walk to a viewing platform to see bears [if there were an]). In reality, the pilot spent a lot of time flying around the island looking for wildlife and then put the plane down twice for close-up viewing. In our estimation this was far better than just flying to one place and hoping to see bears.) After returning to Ketchikan, we spent a few hours exploring the town visiting the Totem Heritage Center and Creek Street where a friend has a gallery. (Tip: The gallery is Alaska Eagle Arts Gallery at 5 Creek Street. Marvin Oliver, artist and gallery owner, is an internationally renowned artist whose monumental public art works can be found in Perugia, Italy, Paris, France and national and international locations. Marvin has won the coveted "Best of Division" prize at the Santa Fe Indian Market for a large glass sculpture.) We decided to have lunch in Ketchikan before re-boarding the ship and found our way to the Burger Queen which had been highly recommended by several previous cruisers. It did not disappoint. The halibut burger was delicious and the hamburgers looked good as did the hand-made milkshakes which we managed to resist. Back on the ship for our 3:00 p.m. sailing we relaxed awhile before the Block Party. At 5:45 everyone was invited to step into the passageway outside their suite with glass in hand to meet their neighbors. Stewards filled glasses with wine and passed hors d'oeuvres as we chatted with fellow cruisers. Captain McNeill, Cruise Director Paul Reynolds and several other senior staff dashed from deck to deck to meet everyone as well. This evening was dinner at Compass Rose, a show in the Seven Seas Lounge and off to bed to rest up for our early morning Tracy Arm excursion the next day. Saturday, July 3: Early this morning a catamaran pulled alongside the Navigator and we boarded at sea for our Tracy Arm excursion. This small vessel is able to take you much deeper into the fjord than can the Navigator and is an excursion that we would highly recommend. Seeing the Sawyer Glaciers close-up as well as the many ice bergs, bergy bits and growlers (your on-board guide will explain the difference between these different-sized bodies of ice) was exciting and made us feel we had truly now arrived in Alaska. A box lunch, packed for us by the ship's galley, was provided and we enjoyed it as we sailed out of the fjord and on to Juneau. (Tip: The catamaran will deliver you to Juneau at approximately the same time that the Navigator arrives so you won't miss any of your Juneau excursions.) After exploring downtown Juneau, we returned to the ship to rest up before taking the Mendenhall Glacier and Whale Watching excursion. This excursion was also a lot of fun. We saw several whales including one that swam under our boat! The food served on board (included in the excursion price) was very tasty and included reindeer sausage, crab cakes, smoked salmon spread, roast beef carved to order, chicken salad, cheese, fruit, several desserts and numerous other items along with beer, wine and soft drinks (two "adult beverages" per passenger). (Tip: Grab a seat with a table to make dining easier; most of the seating is on long benches where you will face other guests across a table but several benches do not have tables.) Captain McNeill had planned to hang around off shore so we could watch the Independence Day fireworks from the ship at midnight but unfortunately the light rain that we had been having all day caused them to be canceled. So we sailed for Skagway. Sunday, July 4: Skagway was fun stop. It's a small town and we were able to watch and take part in their 4th of July festivities. It seemed that everyone had turned out for the parade, the tug of war, the egg toss and the other activities that took place all day on Skagway's main street. We had lunch in the Red Onion Saloon which was once Skagway's most exclusive brothel. The chili and the pizza were both good, the beer was cold and the atmosphere was a hoot. There is also a brothel museum here that we didn't visit. Monday, July 5 After taking the tender to shore, we took the Russian America excursion which included the Alaska Raptor Center where we were able to observe bald eagles and other birds that were being rehabilitated after injuries, the Sitka National Historic Park with its collection of totems and rain forest nature trail, the Sheldon Jackson Museum with an excellent collection of Native Alaskan artifacts, and St. Michael's Cathedral, the original mother church of Russian orthodoxy in North America. We had an excellent guide and enjoyed getting to learn more about the Russian influence and presence in this part of Alaska. We took the tender back to the ship mid-afternoon and had lunch at the Pool Grill. The cod burger and the hamburger were both quite good and the hamburger was cooked medium rare as ordered. After our late lunch, we rested in our suite before dinner and the evening show, "Le Cirque Navigator." If you have seen Cirque Du Soleil or any of its subsequent incarnations, this show will be somewhat familiar although the small stage and the limited number of performers dictated that it would be much smaller in scope. The performers were quite talented and everything was very well done which made for an entertaining evening. Tuesday, July 6: Today, a full day at sea was our last chance to enjoy all the Navigator had to offer. We had a light breakfast of coffee and pastries in the Navigator Lounge (the chocolate cookies were excellent) so we could get on deck to hear Terry Breen's talk as we approached Hubbard Glacier. The Hubbard Glacier experience was perhaps the highlight of the cruise. We were able to get closer to the glacier than was usually the case and we witnessed several calvings. Seeing and hearing these huge walls of ice breaking off from the glacier and plunging into the ocean was something we will never forget. Mid-morning we had tour of the galley followed by a cooking demonstration by executive chef, Anthony Gatherall. This was followed by a light lunch at Veranda (excellent soups). In the afternoon we did some packing, visited the shops to spend the remainder of our American Express ship board credit, won a few bucks at the slots in the casino and attended a short concert by one of the Navigator's pianists, Constantine. Later in the afternoon we joined our new friends Libby and Paul from Sydney for tea and trivia in the Galileo Lounge. Back to the suite to change before dinner (Prime 7 tonight) and then back to the Galileo lounge for a pre-dinner cocktail. Dinner at Prime 7 was an excellent dining experience. While the quality of the food was perhaps not quite up to the standards of the best fine dining restaurants on land, it was nevertheless quite good and the service couldn't have been better. Renata, our sommelier, was delightful, making excellent wine recommendations and teaching us a few words in Portuguese. We ended the evening at the Farewell Crew Capers. Seeing some of the people on stage who had been serving us, cleaning our suites and performing other duties around the ship was a lot of fun. We particularly appreciated that they performed several dances that were indigenous to their native countries. Wednesday, July 7: This morning we arrived early in Seward and transferred (just a short walk) from the ship to the Grandview Train to Anchorage. The train follows a very scenic route, taking about 4 1/2 hours to make the journey in observation cars which provide ample window space for taking photographs. A guide on board each car provides an informative and entertaining running commentary as the train makes its way inland. Complementary coffee is provided and other drinks (including cocktails) and snacks are available for purchase. (Tip: The seating is two passengers facing two others across a small table so make sure you inform the person handing out the boarding passes know how many are in your party so you can sit together.) It really doesn't matter which side of the train you sit on as the views are spectacular in both directions. It is also easy to get up and move into the aisles or go outside between cars to take pictures. As we neared the airport we were treated to a clear view of Mt. McKinley (Denali) which is often not visible due to cloud cover. In Anchorage the train goes right to the airport where cruisers with early flights check in. Those who have time are taken by motor coach to the downtown Hilton where Regent has reserved space on the top floor for you to relax (coffee and cookies are provided) and take in the views from the open deck or just check your carry-on bags and explore the downtown area. We walked around the streets close to the hotel and had lunch at the Alaska Salmon Chowder House which is just a few blocks away. The salmon chowder was very good as were the Alaskan King Crab Legs washed down with the excellent Alaskan Summer Ale. After lunch, we returned to the hotel for our transfer to the airport and our flight back to Atlanta. Our driver pointed out the small lake that was the float plane airport next to the regular airport and informed us that during the summer there were more takeoffs and landings at this float plane airport than at JFK airport in New York! Our flight was delayed about an hour due to an unexpected shift in the prevailing winds which required the recalibration of our take-off. Once airborne we had excellent views of the Alaskan coast and mountain ranges for several hours as we winged our way back to the lower 48. Back home in Atlanta we've had 10 days to reflect on our Regent Navigator cruise and can't imagine we could have had a better experience on any other cruise line. We loved everything about the ship itself, the level of service provided by the friendly crew, and the quality of food, drink and entertainment. Thanks Regent. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
The majority of sailings in Alaska for 2010 are one way trips from Vancouver to Anchorage or the reverse, so this itinerary is fairly rare in that it embarked and disembarked in Vancouver. We opted for this sailing because we were sailing ... Read More
The majority of sailings in Alaska for 2010 are one way trips from Vancouver to Anchorage or the reverse, so this itinerary is fairly rare in that it embarked and disembarked in Vancouver. We opted for this sailing because we were sailing with my partner's parents and with some friends of our from Arizona. Some in the group wanted to take care of their own air, so this itinerary made the most sense from a fiscal standpoint. Pre-Cruise: We arrived in Vancouver a few days before the cruise and stayed at L'Hermitage, a small boutique hotel at the corner of Robson and Richards. It was more like staying in a nice apartment because it had a living room, sun room, bedroom, bathroom, laundry room and kitchen. The kitchen had Sub-Zero refrigerator and Bosch appliances. We had a great stay there and it was easy to venture to various parts of downtown quickly either walking or by cab. Embarkation: We arrived at the terminal at approximately 12:20pm. We were on the ship having lunch by 12:40pm. Very smooth and efficient embarkation. It may be the quickest one I have ever done. Suite/Cabin: We were in a Penthouse B suite, 1018. On Navigator, all rooms from Category H up to PH A are all the same. Cat G and H rooms are same size minus balcony. Cat F up to PH A are same size room plus same size balcony. Our friends were in Cat H and it was just as wonderful as the PH B we had. The suite was immaculate and remained immaculately maintained throughout the cruise. Our butler, Felix, was excellent. He even helped us dine at Prime 7 a second time. The bathrooms on Navigator are a bit better designed than on Regent's Mariner because they have separate showers and bathtub. The location of this suite was wonderful. The PH A suites above have the gym and spa above them, but the PH B on Deck 10 have none of those noisy treadmill runners above them. Also, PH B suites are on the same deck as the pool, which is nice to be able to nip out and see the surroundings passing by. 1018 was also fairly mid-ship, so a little less movement. We did not feel vibration in this room, but vibration was VERY noticeable in the aft part of the ship, esp. in Galileo Lounge, Stars Lounge, and La Veranda, the buffet. I did hear some passengers who booked Cat F (the suites in the rear of the ship) complaining about their difficulties sleeping, etc. I don't think I could have done it. The amazing thing is that those who sailed Navigator before and after refurbishment seemed to think the vibration was 70% less than it used to be since they refurbished the ship (including some new work on the tail and hull). Dining: Navigator has the Compass Rose (main dining room), La veranda (buffet), the Pool Grill, and Prime 7 (Specialty Steak House). Also, 24 hour room service. Food was consistently good, but not great. This is all very subjective. I still think Oceania has the best food at sea. Regent is good; don't get me wrong. The most interesting thing on this cruise was service. Overall, the service is outstanding. The one place this fell down was in La Veranda. No one offering coffee yet no self serve station for coffee. No one offering made to order egg dishes when you cannot order them at the counter (a sign there reminds you to order from a server). At lunch, same thing, no one offering water, drinks, etc. Dinner, no better. This seemed really odd to me seeing many of the folks in La Veranda provide excellent service when working in Compass Rose or elsewhere. I actually brought it up with many examples on the Comment Card mid-cruise, and I am surprised to say the service improved a lot. One of the maitre d's even found me one evening and thanked me for bringing it to his attention. Clearly they have our photos somewhere on the ship. We ate at Prime 7 twice and had excellent food and service. Our friends caught a Halibut on a fishing excursion and the chef in Compass Rose grilled it for us and even prepared new potatoes and a special sauce to go with it. I was amazed at such things. We also dined on the last evening with the Cruise Director, Paul Reynolds. He is truly a warm, funny, wonderful guy.Excursions: The most amazing excursion ever was the Tracy Arm catamaran. The ship cruises into Tracy Arm on its way to Juneau and a large 2 story catamaran vessel pulls up along side the ship. We boarded and then left the ship and went miles into the fjord to areas the ship could not reach. We were able to get within a quarter of a mile of the North End of Sawyer Glacier. Just unbelievable. For someone who had been to Alaska before, I was blown away at being so up close to everything. I have to thank Cruise Critic because were it not for the Boards, I would never have even heard about this excursion seeing it didn't show up on-line at Regent and wasn't even findable. My partner zip-lined in Skagway and had a great time. We also did the Alaskan Chef's Table in Ketchikan. I wouldn't recommend this. Not very Alaskan and not very good cuisine. Skip it. Some folks did the jet boats up a river in Wrangell and raved about it. Shows: As usual, I didn't make it to any of the shows. Sorry. People seemed to like a number of them. Activities: The usual activities. Oddly, on this sailing, people were obsessed with Bingo. So many people played that the jackpots approached $800 at times! Lectures: Overall, good. In Alaska though, most chose to head out and see things in real life. Disembarkation: The smoothest I have ever seen. Orderly, quick, easy. Overall: Wonderful cruise. We would recommend Regent to just about anyone. I do have a slight leaning toward the Seven Seas Mariner, but Navigator is a fine ship. I just wouldn't book a cabin in Cat F so as to avoid the vibration in the aft of the ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
Seven Seas Navigator Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.3
Dining 4.5 4.1
Entertainment 3.5 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.6
Family 3.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.5
Rates 4.0 3.8

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