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  #1  
Old July 10th, 2011, 06:34 PM
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Default What has PCH changed? Some answers.

I was asked on an unrelated thread what I meant by the following comment and question from Davefr:

"But, when Apollo purchased Regent, things changed on Regent. Regent has to do everything that Oceania does. Regent has lost it's identity. Top management at the parent company (Prestige Cruise Holdings) loves Oceania. Regent seems to be a poor step-child. That is what is really sad."
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TC,

I'm having a difficult time understanding your statements above. Would you please provide some specifics. Other than the obvious change in the chain of command, what "things" have changed on Regent since its purchase by Apollo? What are some examples of Regent having to do everything that Oceania does and of Regent losing its identity? Frankly, I see major differences between Oceania and Regent. Why do you think Regent is the poor step-child of Oceania? Prestige Cruise Holdings has poured over $100,000,000 into Regent to revitalize the ships after Carlson, the previous owner, let them slip. IMHO, that is hardly the example of a poor step-child. Cinderella is not scrubbing floors while her step-sisters attend the ball.

Since I first cruised on Regent after Apollo purchased them, I'm looking forward to your specific thoughts. Thanks.

Dave
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First I want to acknowledge the time, effort and money that went into the refurbishment of Regent's three ships. I believe that close to $100K went into the Navigator alone. It was a good move on PCH (Prestige Cruise Holdings) part to insure that their investment was in tip top shape. And, they went overboard in some cases to make that happen.

While Regent is not "Cinderella" scrubbing floors while her step-sisters attend the ball. She is sitting around waiting for the promised "new ship" while her step-sisters get not one. . . . but two new two ships. In fact, both ships are more luxurious than any Regent ship. I doubt if the poor little Regent ships would even want to share a dock with Ms. Marina or the future Ms. Riviera as they would pale next to their beauty. The daddy of all the ships keeps telling people how beautiful Ms. Marina is. In fact, she is the "most beautiful ship built in the last fifty years". (That is a direct quote).

Lest people think I am making light of this. . . . I'm not. I may need some help to remember all of the specific changes that caused Regent to follow in Oceania's footsteps. There are also changes made only to Regent that have not been met with too positively. These are the ones I can recall.

1. Starting with the most recent, Oceania has had the "Concierge" program for a long time. Their passengers are used to boarding based on what cabin level they have on the ship. Although Regent dropped this requirement out of the program, Regent's "luxury ship passengers" will wait to make dining and excursion reservations.

2. The most popular speaker on any of the Regent ships has been Terry Breen. I recently read on the Oceania board that someone was upset that Terry was back at Regent. Terry is certainly not the only reason passengers sail to Alaska, but she is a big plus. But, Regent has no choice other than to share her with Oceania.

3. Speaking of "sharing", Regent now shares their entertainment with Oceania. While I can not give examples of this. . . . the itineraries of Regent and Oceania ships seem to be getting more and more similiar. Is this in order to "share" talent? If what I suspect is true, this would limit itineraries on Regent.

4. For financial reasons, wine and food providers are also shared between the two cruise lines. From what I read, Oceania's food quality is at least as good as Regent's (some -- like big Oceania fan 'Hondorner', says the food on Oceania is better). Wonder why that would be?

5. Oceania is Elegant Casual. Many of us on CruiseCritic actually thought that our vote caused Regent to change their dress codes. I don't suppose we were following in Oceania's footsteps on that one.

6. Excursions. While Regent's is "included", we use the same companies as Oceania. A book could be written with all of the comments made about "included" excursions. Another change by their parent company.

7. Quartertly price increases (or not). Well, they threaten to raise prices every three months. Usually only a handfull actually incresase. This last time they snuck in a tax of up to $17/day per person in addition to increasing many fares.

8. Communication! Don't believe I have to give specific examples here as most everyone is aware of the complete and total lack of communication by the parent company. Examples will be provided if needed.

And, where is our new ship? Is it filed in the same place as the upcoming alleged announcement that Seven Seas Society Gold and above will not be affected by the Concierge program?

Before someone says that this is a negative post. I am answering a question based on my personal feelings and experiences. I still sail on Regent because I adore the staff, the ships, the service and -- most of the time -- the food.

Now I'll put on my armor and awaiting the verbal bullets:-)
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Last edited by Travelcat2; July 10th, 2011 at 06:39 PM.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 07:45 PM
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So terribly sorry to disappoint you, Tee Cee, but the first answering post on your new thread is going to be relatively neutral! I only have a few things to say:

1) Terry Breen _is_ absolutely wonderful; however, if I could have the magnificent Sandra Bowern to listen to, then Terry can minister to someone else for a little while!

2) 17 bucks a day doesn't seem like valid quibble material for Regent clients -- though I do suppose that it's the principle that counts.

3) A new-ship commitment might be scrutinized extra-hard while waiting for economic projections in the current monetary climate -- and the O ships might have been already-committed-to. Dunno. But maybe.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 08:00 PM
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TC,

Interesting response. I'll reply later tonight.

Dave
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Old July 10th, 2011, 08:23 PM
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I agree about Sandra Bower, she's great, and gives Terry a run for her money. I'm actually not a huge Terry fan.
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  #5  
Old July 10th, 2011, 08:33 PM
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Tc..

Quoting a line from your post....
==
Before someone says that this is a negative post. I am answering a question based on my personal feelings and experiences. I still sail on Regent because I adore the staff, the ships, the service and -- most of the time -- the food.
==

I agree with the quoted line.....having said that, what else in life do you want?

I can't figure out what you keep driving at. If you are happy with Regent, sit back, have a glass of wine..(not whine)..and be grateful that you can continue to sail with them....

If not, then start shopping around until you find utopia on another line.
You seem to always find something to grumble about..
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Old July 10th, 2011, 09:09 PM
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Responder: Please let me nicely remind you that I was responding to a question. I did not bring the subject up. And, I posted things as I see them. Actually, I rarely bring negative subjects up. . . . but, do respond to them (as I do positive subjects).

As I have also stated many, many times, we enjoy Regent. When onboard I am enjoying my wine (or chocolate martini:-) and not looking at things to find fault with. Life is too short for that. However, if someone asks me about something specific, I'll think back and respond honestly. I still remember the worst piece of grouper that I have had in my life in Compass Rose and the best crab legs in Prime 7. I do comprehensive reviews (in the review section of CruiseCritic) for most cruises we have been on. They are by no means negative. I write letters to Mark Conroy and Frank Del Rio complimenting outstanding members of the crew as well as making sure each name is written on the comment card. I am a huge Regent cheerleader.

On CruiseCritic, I am 100% honest with my feelings. I abhor some of the newer policies that have been put in place on Regent. I will continue to debate with people who disagree with me (this does not make me right -- however, I have a right to debate my opinion(s). I do whatever I can to assist "newbies" as they are the reason most "regulars" are here.

If you feel that I am "grumbling" all the time, perhaps you should block my posts? And, I mean that with all due respect.

Last edited by Travelcat2; July 10th, 2011 at 09:10 PM.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 09:25 PM
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OK tc, you asked for it within the other thread that generated this post. Will identify you foo paws and provide my comments in some cases to what you wrote, see below:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelcat2 View Post
First I want to acknowledge the time, effort and money that went into the refurbishment of Regent's three ships. I believe that close to $100K went into the Navigator alone. It was a good move on PCH (Prestige Cruise Holdings) part to insure that their investment was in tip top shape. And, they went overboard in some cases to make that happen.

You really must be numerically challenged tc, Elsewhere others mentioned the sum of $1.0M for all three ships. $100K wouldn't even start a minor refurb on ships like Regent has. My guess is that several million went into the fleet since buying from Carlson. Don't forget, there have been several minor and major overhalls. Doubt you can get into a shipyard running 24/7 for less than $50K per day. As to the went overboard comment; can't understand that, there are lots of areas ot spend money on the ships and from my experience didn't see any overboarding. Lots of areas where improvements can still be made.

While Regent is not "Cinderella" scrubbing floors while her step-sisters attend the ball. She is sitting around waiting for the promised "new ship" while her step-sisters get not one. . . . but two new two ships. In fact, both ships are more luxurious than any Regent ship. I doubt if the poor little Regent ships would even want to share a dock with Ms. Marina or the future Ms. Riviera as they would pale next to their beauty. The daddy of all the ships keeps telling people how beautiful Ms. Marina is. In fact, she is the "most beautiful ship built in the last fifty years". (That is a direct quote).

Not sure where you get the fact that Marina and Riviera are more luxurous than Regent ships. Of course they are newer so more up to date and fresh. Having not been on them and neither than I, would not comment in that manner. As to the new Regent ship. Believe it was published here within the last week or so that Regent sold junk bonds in the value of $200M. Since I highly doubt Regent has a cash flow problem, pretty sure the $200M will cover a big portion of the new ship and since I am sure the shipyard needs a pretty significant down payment to start construction, would expect to hear of the new built shortly.

Lest people think I am making light of this. . . . I'm not. I may need some help to remember all of the specific changes that caused Regent to follow in Oceania's footsteps. There are also changes made only to Regent that have not been met with too positively. These are the ones I can recall.

1. Starting with the most recent, Oceania has had the "Concierge" program for a long time. Their passengers are used to boarding based on what cabin level they have on the ship. Although Regent dropped this requirement out of the program, Regent's "luxury ship passengers" will wait to make dining and excursion reservations.

2. The most popular speaker on any of the Regent ships has been Terry Breen. I recently read on the Oceania board that someone was upset that Terry was back at Regent. Terry is certainly not the only reason passengers sail to Alaska, but she is a big plus. But, Regent has no choice other than to share her with Oceania.

3. Speaking of "sharing", Regent now shares their entertainment with Oceania. While I can not give examples of this. . . . the itineraries of Regent and Oceania ships seem to be getting more and more similiar. Is this in order to "share" talent? If what I suspect is true, this would limit itineraries on Regent.

I am absolutely mystified as to how sharing entertainment limits itineraries on Regent and if it limited them on Regent, it would also limit them on Oceania. How in the world do similar itineraries result in shared talent??? And, if the itineraries are getting similar, then they are also similar to other cruise lines. There are only so many places to cruise and it seems that most cruise lines have similar itineraries. Would be concerned if they were identical but, similar is something one can find with most lines.

4. For financial reasons, wine and food providers are also shared between the two cruise lines. From what I read, Oceania's food quality is at least as good as Regent's (some -- like big Oceania fan 'Hondorner', says the food on Oceania is better). Wonder why that would be?

Well, purchasing food in bulk is a money saver so both lines should be able to provide better food at lower prices based on larger purchases. As to food being better on one line than another. It has been said time and again on this board that food is highly subjective. People on the same cruise have had differing opinions of the food quality. Would bet the same thing is bringing on this difference between the two companies. Most believe the Regent food is good and that's enough for us. We have enjoyed Regent food and the only thing that might change my mind is if we found a cruise line with rock lobster every nite!

5. Oceania is Elegant Casual. Many of us on CruiseCritic actually thought that our vote caused Regent to change their dress codes. I don't suppose we were following in Oceania's footsteps on that one.

And so what if we are; it's a good policy and most of us don't care what brought it on.

6. Excursions. While Regent's is "included", we use the same companies as Oceania. A book could be written with all of the comments made about "included" excursions. Another change by their parent company.

Not sure how this belongs in this discussion. While there are more complaints on Regent due to the required included excursions, Oceania people vote with their wallets and pretty universally go for private tours. Again, economy of scale should improve Destinations but, in my opinion, the management of Destinations is suspect and subpar due to ???????

7. Quartertly price increases (or not). Well, they threaten to raise prices every three months. Usually only a handfull actually incresase. This last time they snuck in a tax of up to $17/day per person in addition to increasing many fares.

True but, again doesn't belong in this discussion. Didn't come from Oceania, did it?

8. Communication! Don't believe I have to give specific examples here as most everyone is aware of the complete and total lack of communication by the parent company. Examples will be provided if needed.

Again while totally true, don't see how that came from Oceania. Don't see a lot of complaints on this subject on their board. Could be this will migrate from Regent to Oceania in the near future.

And, where is our new ship? Is it filed in the same place as the upcoming alleged announcement that Seven Seas Society Gold and above will not be affected by the Concierge program?

Ansered this in the first complaint above. True issue with the concierge program not doing well in the communications arena but, these two issues are certainly not interelated.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 09:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelcat2 View Post
Responder: Please let me nicely remind you that I was responding to a question. I did not bring the subject up. And, I posted things as I see them. Actually, I rarely bring negative subjects up. . . . but, do respond to them (as I do positive subjects).

As I have also stated many, many times, we enjoy Regent. When onboard I am enjoying my wine (or chocolate martini:-) and not looking at things to find fault with. Life is too short for that. However, if someone asks me about something specific, I'll think back and respond honestly. I still remember the worst piece of grouper that I have had in my life in Compass Rose and the best crab legs in Prime 7. I do comprehensive reviews (in the review section of CruiseCritic) for most cruises we have been on. They are by no means negative. I write letters to Mark Conroy and Frank Del Rio complimenting outstanding members of the crew as well as making sure each name is written on the comment card. I am a huge Regent cheerleader.

On CruiseCritic, I am 100% honest with my feelings. I abhor some of the newer policies that have been put in place on Regent. I will continue to debate with people who disagree with me (this does not make me right -- however, I have a right to debate my opinion(s). I do whatever I can to assist "newbies" as they are the reason most "regulars" are here.

If you feel that I am "grumbling" all the time, perhaps you should block my posts? And, I mean that with all due respect.
I think we have always agreed about the right to opinions, but I fail to understand what it is that you do to assist "newbies" when many of your posts are critical of Regent, and if I were a "newbie" I might be hesitant to sail with Regent..If you like Regent and want them to stay around, perhaps not grinding away at every little thing would help.
Yes, I know this is a forum for critics, but....

I too, have had a bad piece of fish and an overcooked steak....so what? Do I write to the CEO or President to complain. I mark it on my card and if ever it reaches a point where there are too many misses, I begin to look around.

I really have more interesting things in my life than to be a 24/7 critic.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 09:37 PM
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I have cruised both lines multiple times so I feel qualified to answer. I cruised many times on Regent before the takeover, one time on Oceania before and once afterward. I have not cruised yet since All Included Excursions on Regent. I like Oceania and will probably not cruise Regent again after our November Cruise - even though I am gold mostly because I think they have overpriced themselves and the excursions, as you all know are a deal breaker for me.

First - much of the Ft. Lauderdale staff is gone from Regent in order to combine back office.

The Old Regent did not bump and oversell cabins. Oceania has a method of overselling and selling so many guarantees that on most popular sailings they send out emails to ask people to not sail. You don't have to accept and they raise the offer until they have the cabins they want. This really is a far cry from luxury. In fairness, we did benefit from that offer on one cruise but really I accepted it thinking the itinerary would be the same the following year and I'd just take that cruise the next year. This year they did not offer that itinerary at the same time so we could not do that.

Food - quality is actually about the same on both lines. About 5% better and more options on menu for Regent. But Latitudes is gone. We loved the restaurant - we could get steak in the Compass Rose before. No special orders on Oceania. Food quality on Regent last cruises still excellent but not better than Oceania. Caviar on Regent is gone... Included wine on the Old RSSC was much higher quality for included pours. Examples: Cuivason was daily Chardonnay, Conumdrum Caymus for Red Chateau-du-pape or Coppola and Champagne was Monopole or Veuve included. Many more Chilean and New Zealand Wines now. I guess that they will replace Signatures with La Toscana or similar.

Entertainment: Lounge - In the Old RSSC there were very excellent lecturers and pianists - one was a Van Clyburn winner for Pianists, Remember Frankie Holiday and the Comedian Kenny Smiles . On Oceania - the entertainment was mostly the CD and entertainment staff for a lounge show. Musicians now are mostly Eastern Europeans. In the shows: 2nd rate Jugglers, Plate flippers, and the like. Way down scale. I have yet to see the new Show entertainers but the PDG Terhune Dancers and Singers were very good.

Store Merchandise - much pricier and less quality. I used to buy La Prarie on board RSSC. Now, Lancome and Estee Lauder is ok but the high end boutique products are gone and what is there is over priced.

I am sure I will add to this thread later.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 09:43 PM
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It is a bit difficult to read your comments above, however, I'll give it a try.

While I am admittedly numerically challenged, I simply put a "K" when I meant "M". Good catch!

My comments about the new Oceania ships is right from the CEO's mouth.

Need to do more research regarding similiar Oceania and Regent itineraries. In order to share talent at a reasonable cost, the ships need to be reasonably close together don't they? I have heard several reports of Oceania being in port at the same time Regent is.

Excursions are in the discussion because the quality of excursions are not the same as they were prior to being purchased by Apollo. As you know, excursions are 100% managed by PCH.

Do not know how to respond to the fact that you haven't seen posts regarding the lack of communication from Regent (communication is under the PCH umbrella). There was no communication when the Voyager could not sail a year ago. There was no communication after the volcanic ash caused delays. There is no communication regarding the "hidden" (IMO) increase in taxes on all cruises booked after July 1st (some people probably still don't know about it).

When you purchase food from a supplier, you specify the grade/quality of produce, fish, meat, etc. that you want. You can order "prime" grade meat or a lesser grade. It would be nice to know that Regent is receiving a higher grade than Oceania if only because Regent passengers are paying more money.

You may recall that Mark Conroy made the statement that he is responsible for ships. We know that excursions are handled by Frank Del Rio, Jr. It is not a stretch (IMO) to realize that PCH is running Regent. The CEO created Oceania and is rightfully proud of it. The second in command is the former President of Oceania.

Last edited by Travelcat2; July 10th, 2011 at 09:44 PM.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 11:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Responder View Post
I think we have always agreed about the right to opinions, but I fail to understand what it is that you do to assist "newbies" when many of your posts are critical of Regent, and if I were a "newbie" I might be hesitant to sail with Regent..If you like Regent and want them to stay around, perhaps not grinding away at every little thing would help.
Yes, I know this is a forum for critics, but....

I too, have had a bad piece of fish and an overcooked steak....so what? Do I write to the CEO or President to complain. I mark it on my card and if ever it reaches a point where there are too many misses, I begin to look around.

I really have more interesting things in my life than to be a 24/7 critic.
Somehow your post got buried. . . just found it. For the record, in eleven cruises I have only complained on the form one time. It was on the Mariner regarding food. We ended up having dinner with Franck Galzy who was the Food and Beverage Manager at the time. To this day, we have mutual respect for each other and enjoy each other's company. I do not write the CEO or President to complain either -- only to pass along compliments about the staff.

Newbies is a good subject. If you check my posts, I am as positive as I can possibly be (without lying) to newbies when I answer questions. I always tell them that they will have a wonderful cruise and will love Regent. What undermines the positivity is threads where regulars are bashing each other. . . arguing and making personal criticisms. This gives newbies a really ugly image of the type of people who sail on Regent. It is really okay for regulars to be upset with a new policy. . . it does not, however, have to turn ugly.

And, I really wonder why some people feel it their job to judge my hobby. So, I like researching travel, cruises, flights, ports, etc. This isn't a big deal. Some people like to garden (The only time I step foot in my backyard is to visit my beloved kitty's grave). As I have posted previously, let's post and discuss/debate cruising issues rather than judging one another. It would make a big difference:-)
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Old July 11th, 2011, 01:35 AM
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TC, no verbal bullets but I disagree with much of what you wrote. I'll comment within your post.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelcat2 View Post
I was asked on an unrelated thread what I meant by the following comment and question from Davefr:

"But, when Apollo purchased Regent, things changed on Regent. Regent has to do everything that Oceania does. Regent has lost it's identity. Top management at the parent company (Prestige Cruise Holdings) loves Oceania. Regent seems to be a poor step-child. That is what is really sad."
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TC,

I'm having a difficult time understanding your statements above. Would you please provide some specifics. Other than the obvious change in the chain of command, what "things" have changed on Regent since its purchase by Apollo? What are some examples of Regent having to do everything that Oceania does and of Regent losing its identity? Frankly, I see major differences between Oceania and Regent. Why do you think Regent is the poor step-child of Oceania? Prestige Cruise Holdings has poured over $100,000,000 into Regent to revitalize the ships after Carlson, the previous owner, let them slip. IMHO, that is hardly the example of a poor step-child. Cinderella is not scrubbing floors while her step-sisters attend the ball.

Since I first cruised on Regent after Apollo purchased them, I'm looking forward to your specific thoughts. Thanks.

Dave
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

First I want to acknowledge the time, effort and money that went into the refurbishment of Regent's three ships. I believe that close to $100K went into the Navigator alone. It was a good move on PCH (Prestige Cruise Holdings) part to insure that their investment was in tip top shape. And, they went overboard in some cases to make that happen.

While Regent is not "Cinderella" scrubbing floors while her step-sisters attend the ball. She is sitting around waiting for the promised "new ship" while her step-sisters get not one. . . . but two new two ships. In fact, both ships are more luxurious than any Regent ship. I doubt if the poor little Regent ships would even want to share a dock with Ms. Marina or the future Ms. Riviera as they would pale next to their beauty. The daddy of all the ships keeps telling people how beautiful Ms. Marina is. In fact, she is the "most beautiful ship built in the last fifty years". (That is a direct quote).

I also don't understand how you conclude that the new Oceania ships are more luxurious than the Regent ships without having seen them. They are certainly newer but luxury is in the eye of the beholder and FDR's opinion of the new ships is not universally held. A number of Oceania cruisers prefer the older Oceania ships. There are similar differences of opinion regarding the new Silversea and Seabourn ships as well. As to Oceania getting two new ships while Regent has not gotten one yet, the two Oceania ships were contracted for in early 2007 before Apollo and Prestige Cruise Holdings were in the picture. As rallydave mentioned, the new Regent ship may still be in the cards.

Lest people think I am making light of this. . . . I'm not. I may need some help to remember all of the specific changes that caused Regent to follow in Oceania's footsteps. There are also changes made only to Regent that have not been met with too positively. These are the ones I can recall.

1. Starting with the most recent, Oceania has had the "Concierge" program for a long time. Their passengers are used to boarding based on what cabin level they have on the ship. Although Regent dropped this requirement out of the program, Regent's "luxury ship passengers" will wait to make dining and excursion reservations.

2. The most popular speaker on any of the Regent ships has been Terry Breen. I recently read on the Oceania board that someone was upset that Terry was back at Regent. Terry is certainly not the only reason passengers sail to Alaska, but she is a big plus. But, Regent has no choice other than to share her with Oceania.

AFAIK Terry Breen has not sailed on every Regent Alaska cruise. She takes breaks. I know that in 2009, she did not sail on some August and September Alaska cruises because I was on the first such cruise in September. She rejoined the Mariner the next week for the Grand Asia Pacific cruises. That she was on the Regatta for the first couple of Alaska cruises this year shows nothing about control by PCH. It may have been during her normal break or the result of a request by PCH. In either case, she is now back on Regent.

3. Speaking of "sharing", Regent now shares their entertainment with Oceania. While I can not give examples of this. . . . the itineraries of Regent and Oceania ships seem to be getting more and more similiar. Is this in order to "share" talent? If what I suspect is true, this would limit itineraries on Regent.

I'm confused. First you say that "Regent now shares their entertainment with Oceania." Then you say that similar itineraries might mean that Regent and Oceania share talent. So are they definitely sharing talent or is that mere speculation based on tenuous similarities in their itineraries? Where's the proof? Again, I don't see control by PCH in what you wrote.

4. For financial reasons, wine and food providers are also shared between the two cruise lines. From what I read, Oceania's food quality is at least as good as Regent's (some -- like big Oceania fan 'Hondorner', says the food on Oceania is better). Wonder why that would be?

Cruise line groups buy wine and food together. This is good business since it gives them greater buying power. Long before Apollo bought Regent and Oceania, Oceania always paid special attention to their food quality. One of their slogans was that they had the best food at sea. Everyone has an opinion about food quality. I think Regent's food is slightly better while Hondorner thinks Oceania is better. Even if there is agreement that the food quality of the two lines is the same, so what? That fact is totally irrelevant to the question of control by PCH.

5. Oceania is Elegant Casual. Many of us on CruiseCritic actually thought that our vote caused Regent to change their dress codes. I don't suppose we were following in Oceania's footsteps on that one.

With all due respect, belief that the results of a poll on Cruise Critic and a similar poll on another cruise board were the sole cause of the dress code changes on Regent was sincere but naive. IMHO, passenger comment cards as well as focus groups were the main impetus for the change. The cruise board polls were used to check the reaction to such a change by many of the loyal, frequent Regent cruisers. When those cruisers overwhelmingly supported dress code changes, Regent was assured that changing the dress code would not result in the loss of large numbers of passengers.

To say that PCH made Regent change their dress code, ignores the polls as well as the general trend in society towards more casual dress. In any event, it was the right decision so who cares if it came from Oceania.

6. Excursions. While Regent's is "included", we use the same companies as Oceania. A book could be written with all of the comments made about "included" excursions. Another change by their parent company.

Assuming it's correct, using the same excursion companies makes sense. Economies of scale and all that. I know that you and some others do not like included excursions and forcefully state your position often but many others, including those who sailed on Regent before Apollo, report that excursions now are quite good and the equal of those Regent had before included excursions. How do you know the change to included excursions in 2009 came from PCH and not from within Regent?

7. Quartertly price increases (or not). Well, they threaten to raise prices every three months. Usually only a handfull actually incresase. This last time they snuck in a tax of up to $17/day per person in addition to increasing many fares.

What does this have to do with changes or control by PCH? Just for the record, you make it sound like Regent added up to $17/day in additional taxes. What they did was take the tax amount out of the cruise fare and make it an additional charge. Besides Regent's stated reason for the change, including the tax amount within the cruise fare put them at a competitive disadvantage with their competition who did not include taxes in their cruise fares and could, at least partially, advertise lower prices. In effect, they increased total fares by at least the tax amount. There was nothing sneaky about it. It is clearly shown on the website and in brochures issued on or after July 1st. Some people received a brochure showing the new charge prematurely but that appears to have been a mistake.

Incidentally, the fact that the additional tax and fee amount on many cruises works out to exactly $17/day does not necessarily mean that Regent is playing games with its passengers. It most likely means that the taxes and fees amount to more than $17/day and that the excess is still included in the cruise fare. For example, on my seven-day Alaska cruise in 2009, the taxes and fees were $354, including the infamous $50 cruise tax by the State of Alaska. Even without the $50 tax, I can't imagine taxes on a seven-day Alaska cruise have gone from $304 to $119, which is the additional tax and fee charge now shown for such a cruise. Regent has no incentive to add bogus taxes and fees to its fares since all taxes and fees collected must go to the appropriate governmental agencies.

8. Communication! Don't believe I have to give specific examples here as most everyone is aware of the complete and total lack of communication by the parent company. Examples will be provided if needed.

Irrelevant to the questions at issue here. Clearly there have been some communications gaffes. You see similar complaints on most cruise line boards. Regent is not perfect at communications. Neither is anyone else. Big deal.

And, where is our new ship? Is it filed in the same place as the upcoming alleged announcement that Seven Seas Society Gold and above will not be affected by the Concierge program?

Again, irrelevant to your issues.

Before someone says that this is a negative post. I am answering a question based on my personal feelings and experiences. I still sail on Regent because I adore the staff, the ships, the service and -- most of the time -- the food.

Now I'll put on my armor and awaiting the verbal bullets:-)
I tried to base my reply on facts whenever possible. If I have made any misstatements, I hope someone points them out so I can make corrections.

Dave
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  #13  
Old July 11th, 2011, 01:59 AM
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Think we will agree to disagree.

Would like to debate a few points.

If the CEO of PCH states that the Marina is the most beautiful ship that was built in the last 50 years, whether people agree or not, this is his opinion. It is his intention to build ships that he feels are more luxurious than Regent's ships.

It was my understanding that Oceania had contracts to build three ships and that it was possible that they might make the third build a Regent ship.

I was using the term "talent" and "entertainment" interchangeably (guess that growing up in L.A. hasn't worn off). Regent is sharing their entertainers with Oceania. I will do research into the subject of itineraries being similiar. It is something I've noticed as the result of posts on CC.

PCH is actually governing everything that is going on with Regent. I don't expect you to necessarily believe me. All I can say is that Mark Conroy stated what he was responsible for fairly recently. So, if he isn't running Regent, who is? It is definitely PCH.

So, rather continuing to go point by point. . . . the lack of communication, excursions, food, etc. are being run by PCH. Another point that I cannot prove but can be researched if anyone cares to is the number of General Managers that have quit in the past two years. Additionally, the head of the Seven Seas Society has moved over the Silversea (where lots of former Regent executives are now).

One other point I'd like to make that I didn't address previously. PCH has a policy of moving people around fairly regularly (from ship to ship). While this sounds good, it isn't working well for the crew. As soon as a GM has everything running well (service, etc.) everything changes.

I have great respect for FDR and know that he is striving for excellence (perfection). He has been quite busy with the new Oceania ships for the past two years. And, as mentioned previously, the 2nd in command is the former President of Oceania. IMO, a high level executive with experience in the industry (and no previous ties to Regent or Oceania) would have a very positive effect on both cruise lines.

The bottom line is that many of us will continue to disagree and there is nothing really wrong with that.
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  #14  
Old July 11th, 2011, 02:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelcat2 View Post
Think we will agree to disagree.

Would like to debate a few points.

If the CEO of PCH states that the Marina is the most beautiful ship that was built in the last 50 years, whether people agree or not, this is his opinion. It is his intention to build ships that he feels are more luxurious than Regent's ships.

It was my understanding that Oceania had contracts to build three ships and that it was possible that they might make the third build a Regent ship.

I was using the term "talent" and "entertainment" interchangeably (guess that growing up in L.A. hasn't worn off). Regent is sharing their entertainers with Oceania. I will do research into the subject of itineraries being similiar. It is something I've noticed as the result of posts on CC.

PCH is actually governing everything that is going on with Regent. I don't expect you to necessarily believe me. All I can say is that Mark Conroy stated what he was responsible for fairly recently. So, if he isn't running Regent, who is? It is definitely PCH.

So, rather continuing to go point by point. . . . the lack of communication, excursions, food, etc. are being run by PCH. Another point that I cannot prove but can be researched if anyone cares to is the number of General Managers that have quit in the past two years. Additionally, the head of the Seven Seas Society has moved over the Silversea (where lots of former Regent executives are now).

One other point I'd like to make that I didn't address previously. PCH has a policy of moving people around fairly regularly (from ship to ship). While this sounds good, it isn't working well for the crew. As soon as a GM has everything running well (service, etc.) everything changes.

I have great respect for FDR and know that he is striving for excellence (perfection). He has been quite busy with the new Oceania ships for the past two years. And, as mentioned previously, the 2nd in command is the former President of Oceania. IMO, a high level executive with experience in the industry (and no previous ties to Regent or Oceania) would have a very positive effect on both cruise lines.

The bottom line is that many of us will continue to disagree and there is nothing really wrong with that.
Agreeing to disagree sounds fine. Now some disagreement.

You're equating beauty with luxury. IMHO, the two are not necessarily synonymous. How do you know that FDR intends to build ships more luxurious than Regent's ships? Has he made statements to that effect?

Oceania originally contracted for two ships with an option for a third.

I understood that you were using "talent" and "entertainment" interchangeably. But how do you know that Regent and Oceania are sharing entertainers? Other than your posts today, I've never seen such an assertion anywhere. Oceania and Regent, as well as other cruise lines, have had similar itineraries for years. In particular, they had similar itineraries long before Apollo came on the scene. I fail to see the relevance of this fact.

Assuming you're correct about PCH running Regent, have things really changed that much? IMHO, Regent is still a high quality, luxury cruise line.

Dave
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  #15  
Old July 11th, 2011, 03:42 AM
AWED23 AWED23 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveFr View Post
Agreeing to disagree sounds fine. Now some disagreement.

You're equating beauty with luxury. IMHO, the two are not necessarily synonymous. How do you know that FDR intends to build ships more luxurious than Regent's ships? Has he made statements to that effect?

Oceania originally contracted for two ships with an option for a third.

I understood that you were using "talent" and "entertainment" interchangeably. But how do you know that Regent and Oceania are sharing entertainers? Other than your posts today, I've never seen such an assertion anywhere. Oceania and Regent, as well as other cruise lines, have had similar itineraries for years. In particular, they had similar itineraries long before Apollo came on the scene. I fail to see the relevance of this fact.

Assuming you're correct about PCH running Regent, have things really changed that much? IMHO, Regent is still a high quality, luxury cruise line.

Dave
.....Dave, I believe the main problem in this thread is TC2 stating her opinions as facts...Her myth regarding Marc Conroy not running Regent is a good example. I could explain how I know it to be only her opinion based on second hand information but I choose to chuckle each time she mistates it as a fact, just as in her mind a poll here caused the Regent dress code change.....I suspect she started this thread on a slow day to have a little fun....
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  #16  
Old July 11th, 2011, 07:57 AM
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Default Some ramblings

Just a few thoughts and comments.

I am pretty sure that Radisson used the GTY system far more conservately than Regent under PCH. And rarely bumped people. A very few GTY's were sold in a particular category to hedge against empty cabins. Oceania did this too, although there were bumps from the beginning, I think.

I also remember folks here complaining long and hard about the Carlson's benign neglect of the cruise line, and the joy when it was sold. Unfortunately I suspect for passengers on board the ships, things were better in those days. But Radisson was losing money, or close to that in some years.

I come from a software background--there's a phrase used when developing a product--"creeping featurism". The tendency to keep adding more features to a program until it's tottering and top-heavy and hard to maintain. Regent under PCH has been, imho, guilty of that. I was thrilled when they went "all-inclusive" for alcohol, and the proof of the success of this was in the lounges at night. But all the other cr*p that they've added since, in aid of raising prices to crazy levels, leaves me cold. I don't want all of that, and will vote with my feet.

When I started with Radisson, in 2000, I believed I would only spend that kind of money once--9/11 proved me wrong, with excellent value over the next few years as the cruise industry staggered. Now the industry is tottering a bit once more, but Regent is stuck with these crazy high prices, and I'm back to my original belief--I can only afford these cruises once in a while, when the price is right.

I loved my last cruise, a modest little 7-day in the Caribbean--Voyager was near the top of her form, and I had no complaints at all. But it may be my last. Oceania looks pretty attractive to me, as does Azamara. Even Seabourn if they have a sale. Or HAL. Or Regent if things get bad and they have firesales. If I cruise at all.
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  #17  
Old July 11th, 2011, 08:54 AM
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Wendy-
I love your idea of firesales. We booked our Dec cruise at prices we paid for the Carib. Cruise we met you on in 2006. Bottom line is that Regent needs to be profitable and a sure fire way to keep a steady flow of customers is to keep your repeaters happy. This is where they have fallen short as of late.

We had dinner with friends who did the Dec sailing with us in 2006. They have since cruised Crystal and Oceania. They placed Regent third saying that it was not luxury - service way better on Crystal and food way better on Oceania. The thing they liked most about Regent was the size of the cabins. We have generally been very happy with Regent with the exception of our 2009 cruise. The pricing is now way over the top for us and the length of many cruises far too long as we are both still working. However, I am very much looking forward to my upcoming Dec "firesale" cruise and hopefully a few more in the next couple of years.
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  #18  
Old July 11th, 2011, 09:56 AM
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Default Dec 2006

That was a great cruise in 2006 = I think we paid $1800 for a week and the Navigator was in top form having just come out of dry dock.
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  #19  
Old July 11th, 2011, 10:10 AM
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Agreed.

Fabulous trip

No included excursions but we were seriously just fine

I remember we had some rough weather too
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  #20  
Old July 11th, 2011, 10:32 AM
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Yes it was a great little trip, at a great price.

One thing I forgot. I would love to hear what is happening among the real Regent
Loyalists--the elite levels, Platinum and beyond. Are they happy? Presumably they will stick because of the perks, to some extent, but if things slip, they will start to bail.

Yes, R has great cabins. And a great Biz class upgrade program.

We are now both retired, so must mete out our travel treats, and a Regent cruise is major "burn"!
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