Imagine enjoying a wonderful cruise, eating and drinking to your heart’s content, taking shore excursions galore yet leaving the ship (legally!) with nothing to pay. Not possible? Actually it is with Regent Seven Seas Cruises.
Welcome to the world of luxury all-inclusive cruising with Regent Seven Seas Cruises, a company that includes so much in the fare you can almost afford to leave your wallet at home.
If that’s put you in the mood for sea air, the exciting news is that Titan Travel has teamed up with Regent and is packaging its all-inclusive cruise fares with land tours and perks such as VIP home transfers so you get even more for your money.
Regent made headlines in 2016 with the launch of Seven Seas Explorer, dubbed the world’s most luxurious vessel. Think Picasso artworks and leather-clad flooring, and you start to get an idea of just how lavish she is. There is enough marble to fill more than 16 tennis courts and a one-off Regent Suite that’s so big it would shame a New York apartment.
But there is more to luxury than the things money can buy. Service, cuisine and ambience are all important and Regent has got all three taped. Whether you cruise on Explorer, or one of Regent’s other three ships, you can expect personal service, gourmet cuisine and a friendly vibe, enhanced by the fact you don’t have to worry who is picking up the bar bill!
Compass Rose, the main restaurant on all Regent ships, is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but there are many more places to eat including a self-service buffet that becomes an Italian eatery called Sette Mari in the evening, and a casual pool-side grill serving burgers, salads and sandwiches.
Steak lovers should make a date with Prime 7 (take a big appetite because the cuts of meat are huge!), while French cuisine is the order of the day in the art nouveau-style Chartreuse, a restaurant decked out to imitate a Parisian bistro. Originally it was just on Explorer but was such a hit that Regent quickly made plans to put the restaurant on its other ships.
I enjoyed both but my favourite was Pacific Rim, a Pan-Asian fusion restaurant exclusive to Explorer. It has a giant prayer wheel at the entrance that cost a cool $500,000 and gets you in the mood for the mouth-watering spring rolls, duck and watermelon salad, Vietnamese beef soup and curries to come.
As with drink, there’s nothing to pay in any of the restaurants on Regent ships so you can eat wherever takes your fancy and not worry about busting the budget. That’s such a treat.
Regent has three other ships. Seven Seas Navigator is the much-loved baby of the fleet with accommodation for just 490 passengers, while Seven Seas Mariner and Seven Seas Voyager were the world’s first-ever all-suite, all-balcony cruise ships and continue to charm all who sail on them.
Marginally smaller than Explorer (700 passengers vs 750), they are continually being refreshed and refurbished to ensure guests enjoy the same elegance and style no matter which vessel they sail on. Navigator was given a beautiful new library and hand-made crystal chandeliers in her last refit; Voyager got a Chartreuse restaurant and plush new décor in her Penthouse, Concierge and Deluxe suites during her last makeover, and the same changes will be made to Seven Seas Mariner in time for Titan’s cruise on her in February 2019.
The four vessels might have their own style, but the atmosphere is the same – casually elegant and refined but never stuffy – while the quality of even the smallest suites rivals premium accommodation on other cruise lines.
There are private balconies, walk-in wardrobes and en-suite facilities with separate showers and bathtubs. The deluxe beds are made up with the best European linens so you can be sure of a good night’s sleep. The minibar is replenished daily with your favourite tipple – there’s nothing to pay for it remember – and there’ll be a welcome bottle of champagne waiting for you on the first day to toast the voyage.
On board, days can be as busy or sedate as you like. There are swimming pools, driving ranges and putting greens, as well as large gyms equipped with the latest keep-fit equipment where you can work off all the fantastic food. Alternatively, relax with a favourite book, be pampered in the spa, sit in on informed lectures and talks, and keep in touch with family and friends via the complimentary Wi-Fi.
Choose Seven Seas Explorer and you can even improve your cookery skills in the Culinary Arts Kitchen, a venue fitted with 18 individual stations where you roll up your sleeves and prepare the dishes yourself. In some ports, chef-led culinary tours visit local markets and leading Michelin restaurants.
Titan Travel and Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Titan is offering two outstanding Regent voyages in South America and Asia, which it has made even more special with thrilling pre-cruise tours that visit the Iguassu Falls (think Niagara but far better) and the Bridge over the River Kwai.
Departing January 26 2019, a 25-day South America adventure pairs a bucket-list voyage around Cape Horn on Seven Seas Explorer with two nights in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and two at the Iguassu Falls, as well as tours to the world-famous Christ the Redeemer statue and Sugar Mountain.
You’ll also have a night and tour in Buenos Aires before setting sail on a once-in-a-lifetime voyage that visits the wild Falkland Islands and takes you past glistening glaciers and through the snow-capped Chilean fjords. The scenery is spectacular, and you can expect to spot everything from penguins and seals to ostrich-like rheas along the way.
The second cruise-tour departs February 20 2019 and combines a voyage from Laem Chebang (the port for Bangkok) to Hong Kong on Seven Seas Mariner with two nights in the Thai capital and two in a floating hotel in Kanchanaburi, for a poignant tour to the Thailand-Burma Railway Centre Museum dedicated to the Allied prisoners of war forced by the Japanese to build the notorious Bridge over the River Kwai during the Second World War.
The cruise itself is a magnificent journey through Thailand, Cambodia, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam. You’ll see spectacular Halong Bay, have an option to visit Hanoi – a enthralling city buzzing with motor scooters (cross the road if you dare!) – and stay overnight in Hong Kong, where breathtaking skyscrapers tower over ancient Chinese shops.
Luxury doesn’t come much better than this.