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Looking at Seabourn - Basic Questions


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1 hour ago, RetiredandTravel said:

 

 

Currently we are considering Seabourn (Ovation) to Northern Europe & Silversea (Shadow/Moon) to Australia or South America.  We've toyed with Oceania and noticed Viking has an expedition cruise through the Great lakes & Canada that looks cool.   We have travelled quite a bit, new to cruising . 

 

Our trips on the Regent Voyager and Mariner were polar opposites. 

 

The Voyager was about to go in for a refurbishment, it was  rough around the edges and worn.  The service and food on the Voyager was so great the condition of the ship didn't seem to matter.  The Mariner had just had a major refurbishment, the ship was beautiful.  The service and food on the Mariner was so off the beauty of the ship didn't matter.

 

On the Voyager we were sorry to leave , on the Mariner were glad to leave.

 

Many frequent travelers with Regent said that they felt standards had slipped since they were bought out.  "The bean counters are in charge" was one quote.

 

I don't know if that's the case but we definitely saw many instances were corners were cut. 

 

The house Champagne on the Voyager was in the low $20 retail, the Mariner (Googled it) $14.   The complimentary bottle of Champagne in the room went from Veuve Clicquot to the house Champagne.  House wine quality declined in our opinion.  The quality of the fish and meats we had declined considerably.  I had Bronzino & Corvina on the Mariner, they were both awful and fishy.

 

The overall food quality deteriorated considerably on the two cruises from mostly great to a couple great, some poor and mostly average.   The lunch menu  changed 1/4 way through the cruise.  My wife ordered the duck, they brought her a 1/2 a duck (which was overcooked) with nothing else, not even a garnish, sides weren't offered on the menu.

 

Service on the Voyager was some of the best we've ever experienced.   On the Mariner the service ranged from apathetic (but efficient) to surly.  Voyager Compass Rose maitre d was a joy always smiling , "enjoy your dinner". The Mariner maitre d you got a cold look, asked room number quietly taken to table.  I will say the other ladies at the front desk were always pleasant. 

 

Here is an example of the service.

 

On the second night at Compass Rose we were taken to our table.  The waiter appeared within 30 seconds and said what would you like?  I politely said if we could get a couple more minutes and a glass of wine I'd appreciate it.  This seemed to enrage them.  The wine server came over glaring at me, showed us the wines.  Then proceeded to sloppily pour the wine almost to the top of the glass.   The waiter was also obviously upset.  It was so uncomfortable we asked to sit of the other side of the restaurant the rest of the cruise.  Unfortunately this type attitude wasn't uncommon.

 

The guest speaker on the Voyager was phenomenal.    She was from the Smithsonian, brilliant and dedicated.   She went over the history of each port and went on all the excursions, engaging with people.  The guest speaker on Mariner was horrible, he went over the entire history of Japan in one day glossing over WW2 and the remarkable economic/cultural revival of Japan from WW2 to today.  He did one other session on Japanese Gardens & one on Korean pottery. 

 

Excursions were excellent on both cruises.

 

Finally our toilet overflowed, I mean gallons of water and sewage pouring out of the toilet.  This had nothing to do with us, there was a major plumbing issue on the ship.  Several rooms on our floor had an issue but ours was the worst.  It took three frantic calls to the front desk and 20 minutes before someone was dispatched to turn the water off.  About 1/3 of our room was was saturated in water and sewage.  God bless housekeeping, they did a great job cleaning and disinfecting the room.  With the room door  open and several fans  the carpet dried by the end of the day.  The head of housekeeping apologized.   No one else from Regent seemed to care, no phone call or note to apologize for the inconvenience.  Maybe an offer to switch rooms? a modest ship board credit? bottle of the house champagne? couple of cookies?  nothing

 

I'd suggest reading the reviews of the Mariner in 2019.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks you for taking the time to reply, we appreciate it.  We also found the service on the Mariner to be efficient and yet in some cases a definite sense of indifference from some of the bartenders and wait staff in Compass rose. We also noted as did others that there were just 'things' missing that Regent highlights in their marketing and I've seen in other reviews.  At this point we are not considering Regent for any upcoming trips but in reality, ya just never know what the future might hold.  Stay safe and enjoy your future travels!

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4 hours ago, Michael219 said:

  At this point we are not considering Regent for any upcoming trips

 

Based on your post as well as the post by RetiredandTravel, I am encouraged to continue tossing the Regent brochures in the trash.  

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On 3/29/2021 at 11:18 AM, RetiredandTravel said:

Thank You.  So I'm clear.  If I get a V1 suite I have the same priority/time for restaurants & excursions as someone in an owners suite/Frequent Seabourn cruiser?

Yes. Everyone is treated the same regardless of your suite level.  The fancy suites get some extra amenities in the suite and may get a more generous on board credit, but no different treatment or priority outside.  

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On 3/29/2021 at 2:02 PM, RetiredandTravel said:

Why is are some Veranda Suites 246 sq ft and others 302?  I see the veranda can account for 15.

In response to the difference in square footage, for the Odyssey/Sojourn/Quest, rooms 745/746 have the smaller footprint.  These suites can be combined with Wintergarden suites to form the Grand Wintergarden suites.
For the Encore/Ovation, the equivalent rooms are 848/851.  
We have stayed in one of these rooms on the Odyssey class ships.  The square footage difference is noticible, but not really bothersome as we did not spend a lot of time in the room.  The small balcony is a real issue, there is really only enough space for one person on the balcony (and I can't remember if there was a chair or not).  However, we only booked a balcony guarantee for that trip, and were assigned that cabin, which we found to be very convenient to the Seabourn Square, especially for the all important morning coffee.
We tend to think of that suite as the "nanny suite", as it connects to the Wintergarden suite via a connecting door.  (To be honest, the last time we saw a nanny or any very young children on board was around 2004.)
You can explore the deck plans and see that the rest of the suites are about the 300 square foot size.

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There is no substitute for experience on these issues.  Thanks.

 

I will definitely be sure to get a 300sq ft room.    The new configuration has expanded the V1 suites considerably, if a room closer to the middle but not by elevator is available I may go with V1.  Otherwise I'll have to pony up for the next level.

 

The "All men and women are created equal" philosophy on restaurants & excursions is great news for me.  I'm considering the Baltic & Low Countries.  Certain excursions in St Petersburg and Normandy are a must.

 

Looking forward to conditions opening up and my first Seabourn cruise.

 

 

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1 hour ago, RetiredandTravel said:

There is no substitute for experience on these issues.  Thanks.

 

I will definitely be sure to get a 300sq ft room.    The new configuration has expanded the V1 suites considerably, if a room closer to the middle but not by elevator is available I may go with V1.  Otherwise I'll have to pony up for the next level.

 

The "All men and women are created equal" philosophy on restaurants & excursions is great news for me.  I'm considering the Baltic & Low Countries.  Certain excursions in St Petersburg and Normandy are a must.

 

Looking forward to conditions opening up and my first Seabourn cruise.

 

 

 

In that case, Be sure to avoid the rooms that are shower only. They're marked on the deck plans with a black dot.

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35 minutes ago, Isklaar said:

 

In that case, Be sure to avoid the rooms that are shower only. They're marked on the deck plans with a black dot.


Discussion here about the shower only room type. 
Those suites are smaller because of the smaller bathroom, not smaller on the living areas and bedroom. The deck plan shows this type clearly, in addition to the others mentioned up thread that are smaller because they're attached to a premium suite.

 

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18 hours ago, RetiredandTravel said:

There is no substitute for experience on these issues.  Thanks.

 

I will definitely be sure to get a 300sq ft room.    The new configuration has expanded the V1 suites considerably, if a room closer to the middle but not by elevator is available I may go with V1.  Otherwise I'll have to pony up for the next level.

 

The "All men and women are created equal" philosophy on restaurants & excursions is great news for me.  I'm considering the Baltic & Low Countries.  Certain excursions in St Petersburg and Normandy are a must.

 

Looking forward to conditions opening up and my first Seabourn cruise.

 

 

Hi Retired and Travel: My wife and I are booked for this Sept 3, 2022 cruise. As you indicate, this is an interesting itinerary and there are some great excursions lined up. Thanks to our SB TA, we are also well located in V1 on deck 7 - easy to get around. Perhaps, as we get closer, we can coordinate, should you decide to book. This will be our fourth SB cruise (all prior have been on Odyssey), so we are really looking forward to trying the Ovation. I really think that you will enjoy/treasure SB. Best, jdk

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Sounds Great jdk-atlga.  Thanks

 

We're still waiting for the smoke to clear a little more, seems impossible that things won't be back to normal by 9/22 but that's what I thought about 9/21.   The EU has really bungled the vaccine rollout and Russia still isn't letting Americans in.  I'm sure by the time I get off the fence quality V1 rooms will be gone and I'll have to go V3.

 

If you' haven't travelled to Stockholm take a couple days before the cruise to check it out.   I used to do considerable business in Scandinavia (Primarily Stockholm).  My wife and I had a opportunity to spend a week in Stockholm on business/vacation.  The Swedes are great, they speak English better than we do, and the city is a blast.  I'd highly recommend the Grand Hotel.  If you enjoy a cocktail or glass of wine bring your wallet, they tax the heck out of imported alcohol.  Its been 25 years now but I remember going to a restaurant and a $15 bottle of California Cabernet was selling for $120.

 

I give you a heads up when we book.

 

 

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20 hours ago, RetiredandTravel said:

 

I will definitely be sure to get a 300sq ft room.    The new configuration has expanded the V1 suites considerably, if a room closer to the middle but not by elevator is available I may go with V1.  Otherwise I'll have to pony up for the next level.

The elevator is not an issue.  We have been in the suite right next to it a couple of times (different ships, different decks) and you cannot hear it. Day or night.  Same for people waiting for the elevators.  You can't hear them.  

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We have over 100 nights on both lines and love them both.  I'm not going to try and differentiate since I have seen niggles on both lines. However, I've noticed "value' has been mentioned and I want to make sure, since you are new to cruising, that you are using a TA that provides discounts. Also, we like the lower levels since they are closer to the ocean and less likely to move in rough weather.  I have always appreciated that all cruise lines price these cabins lower.  Have sailed in V2 with the steel railings and they have not bothered us at all.  In fact, DW feels more secure when on the balcony!  Regent and Seabourn are both great!  Obviously, your Mariner experience was not but I have to believe, based on our experience, that was an exception.  We're booked for May 2022 in the Med to London (Splendor). Spent 45 nights on the Quest in 2019 which turned out to be Sophie's last cruise as CD.  She is the best ever!

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2 hours ago, alainciao said:

We have over 100 nights on both lines and love them both.  I'm not going to try and differentiate since I have seen niggles on both lines. However, I've noticed "value' has been mentioned and I want to make sure, since you are new to cruising, that you are using a TA that provides discounts. Also, we like the lower levels since they are closer to the ocean and less likely to move in rough weather.  I have always appreciated that all cruise lines price these cabins lower.  Have sailed in V2 with the steel railings and they have not bothered us at all.  In fact, DW feels more secure when on the balcony!  Regent and Seabourn are both great!  Obviously, your Mariner experience was not but I have to believe, based on our experience, that was an exception.  We're booked for May 2022 in the Med to London (Splendor). Spent 45 nights on the Quest in 2019 which turned out to be Sophie's last cruise as CD.  She is the best ever!

 

Very helpful, thanks.  

 

Hopefully our Mariner experience was just a one off.   It did ruin the brand for us, so we'll be trying Seabourn/Silversea in the future.  Enjoy your travels, the Splendor looks like an awesome ship.

 

 

 

 

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