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Richard Cross experiences Seven Seas Splendor

Richard Cross experiences Seven Seas Splendor

I was lucky enough to be invited on the ultra-luxury all inclusive Seven Seas Splendor, part of the Regent Seven Seas Cruises family, for a four-night test preview cruise.

She offers a relaxing ambiance, exquisite gourmet dining and plenty of space onboard Regent Seven Seas Cruises latest masterpiece.

It’s worth pointing out that Regent Seven Seas Cruises all-inclusive experience includes:

  • FREE Unlimited shore excursions
  • FREE Unlimited drinks, including fine wines and spirits
  • FREE Open bars and lounges, plus in-suite mini-bar replenished daily
  • FREE Pre-paid gratuities
  • FREE Speciality restaurants
  • FREE Unlimited WiFi
  • FREE Valet Laundry Service

In theory, you could go onboard without a penny in your pocket, knowing that everything is taken care of.  Although there are onboard shops, a tempting relaxing spa and a casino if you fancy a flutter!

My preview cruise sailed from Southampton to Portland in Dorset, to Falmouth in Cornwall before a relaxing day and sea and a return to Southampton.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises had been excellent with pre-cruise communication and my allocated check in time was 11:30am. I arrived slightly early at the brand-new Horizon Terminal at 10:50am, I was greeted by members of the crew and handed my luggage to the porters who delivered it to my suite. I then went into the terminal to have my Covid nasal swab test, after a short wait I had been given the all clear and proceeded to check in. I had already done the majority of the check in online so I was issued with my cruise card and then was onboard by 11am – one of the first!

As soon as I stepped onboard, I noticed that crew were on hand to welcome you and point you in the direction of your muster assembly station which you were scanned in at right away. There is a high guest to crew ratio which offers exceptional levels of service onboard.

With regards to Covid protocols, all guests were required to be fully vaccinated, and a swab test was completed by the port staff prior to embarkation.  Onboard masks were needed to be worn in all indoor areas (except when sat down in a bar or restaurants or exercising).  The lifts had reduced capacity with footprints recommending where to stand and may of the bars and restaurants had tables & chairs removed to aid social distancing.  There was also increased hand sanitisation points around the ship. When it came to excursions, you were free to take part in any of the Regent Seven Seas Cruises included excursions, or you could go ashore independently. I really did feel safe onboard with the protocols that Regent Seven Seas Cruises had introduced.  I attended a presentation by Jason Montague, President and CEO of Regent Seven Seas Cruises, who commentated that the line was one of the first to ensure all guests got safely back home in 2020 when the pandemic started and were the last cruise line to resume operations, ensuring all protocols and advice were followed.

Dining is a huge part of any cruise holiday and Regent Seven Seas Cruises offer exquisite gourmet dining onboard. And all speciality dining is included in the price of your holiday, so you are free to experience the wonderful flavours and choice.  Compass Rose (deck 4) is the largest of the restaurants, accommodating 372 people at once and open for breakfast, brunch (on select days) and dinner. Here you can enjoy pastas, beef, poultry and fish all paired with a selection of fine wines. Pacific Rim (deck 5) accommodates 94 people and is open for dinner with reservations required. Here you can enjoy pan-Asian cuisine in a zen-like ambiance. I dined here on the final night of the cruise, we ordered a number of starters to share amongst my dinner table followed by lamb which melted in the mouth! Chartreuse (deck 10) accommodates 108 guests and is open for Lunch (on port days) and dinner with reservations required. In this restaurant you can enjoy classic French cuisine with spectacular ocean views.  Prime 7 (deck 10) accommodates 108 guests and is open for Lunch (on port days) and dinner with reservations required.  This was my favourite restaurant onboard with perfectly aged steaks including New York strip, porterhouse and filet mignon – a truly amazing dining experience and was spoilt here on my first night onboard. For those guests booked in the Regent Suite, they can enjoy the Study (deck 10) which seats 12 and is a ornately decorated private venue.  La Veranda (deck 11) accommodates 276 guests. This restaurant is a ‘buffet’ style option, open for breakfast and lunch it offers made-to-order cuisine with both indoor and outdoor seating.  Sette Mari at La Veranda (deck 11) – accommodates 132 guests. This restaurant is open for dinner only and offers authentic Italian specialities with live cooking stations, we had a sharing platter her for our appetisers and then I opted for the chicken which was mouthwatering.   The Pool Grill & Bar (deck 11) accommodates 222 guests and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  This venue casual meal and barbeques and is a great choice for a relaxing lunch by the pool – I had a couple of lunches here, including on embarkation day, relaxing with a beer. In-suite Dining is available 24 hours a day, you can enjoy a full range of appetizers, main courses and desserts. During dining hours, you can enjoy the menu from Compass Rose, served course by course in your suite.

The Serene Spa & Wellness Centre offers a haven of health, beauty and wellness with a choice of relaxing treatments available. Towards the back of the Spa, you can find the infinity plunge pool which will leave you with breath-taking views as the pool aligns to the stern of the ship.  Above the Spa, the Fitness Centre offers state of the art equipment with fitness instructors on hand to assist with sweeping views overlooking the wake of the ship. I did actually visit the gym a couple of times on the cruise and found plenty of equipment, lots of space and sweeping views out to sea. If you feel like getting active outdoors, there is a jogging track around top deck and a sports deck with golf and deck games.

If you fancy your hand at a cookery class, the Culinary Arts Centre offers cooking stations to allow you to make a variety of dishes which you can replicate when back at home. If you have forgot a book, or need something to while away the sea days, there is a well-stocked Library with guidebooks and novels.  In the evening, the Constellation Theatre, which spans over two decks, offers broadway/west end performances and singalongs.

Of an evening there were a number of venues that were worth visiting. The Observation Lounge was my personal favourite for a pre dinner drinks and to watch the sail away from the port offering floor to ceiling views looking out to sea. The Splendor Lounge was my ‘go to place’ after dinner with live entertainment stage which offered singing and performances. The Meridian Lounge offers a warm atmosphere and live music in the evening. Coffee Connection offers speciality teas and coffees with light snacks throughout the day, this is a good meeting venue to catch up with friends over a coffee and a light snack.

One of my favourite parts of the ship is the accommodation, I had a Concierge Suite on Deck 8 which was one of the spacious suites I had even been in, which was around 420sq ft. The suite had a large bathroom with separate bath and shower, two sinks and L’Occitane toiletries which were replenished daily. There was a walk-in wardrobe which had lots of hanging space and cupboard space, plus a hairdryer, sewing kit, dressing gown, slippers and an umbrella if the weather was slightly inclement. Within the main suite, the Elite Slumber bed was one of the most comfortable I had ever slept in which had luxurious linen and towels.  There was a large desk area and seating area along with an interactive TV showcasing all restaurant menus and complimentary movies on demand. An Illy coffee machine was provided, along with a well-stocked mini bar that was all included in the cruise fare.  If you choose to order room service, it is served to you course by course and the table in the suite is laid out as if it were the restaurant.  The outdoor balcony area had quality furniture with thick relaxing cushions.   I had the pleasure of viewing various suites around the ship including the Regent Suite which is an impressive 4,400sq ft!

I was lucky to be invited onboard Seven Seas Splendor by Regent and thoroughly enjoyed my time. I had a few misconceptions about taking a luxury cruise, that it would be very formal and I would feel out of place.  I was totally wrong, there were no formal nights onboard my cruise with Elegant Casual being the evening dress code (open neck shirt and jacket is sufficient). Just remember with Regent Seven Seas Cruises it’s all included so you don’t need to worry about any bills at the end of your cruise.  The service is attentive and outstanding, crew members remember your name, they greet you around the ship, plus remember your favourite drink.

For more details call the team on 02380 658 386 or send us an enquiry:

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