Regent Seven Seas is celebrating its 25th anniversary and to celebrate this jubilee the luxury cruise line treated herself with a beautiful present. The company ordered a new $450 million ship and has since been the proud owner of Seven Seas Explorer. After Princess Charlene of Monaco was given the honor to baptize the ship last year, it was now our turn to pay a visit to the most luxurious cruise ship in the world.
Entering Seven Seas Explorer we are immediately impressed by the majestic double staircase in the Atrium. Finished with a gilded balustrade, the staircase winds elegantly upwards in the direction of a gigantic crystal chandelier. More than 6000 crystals form a reverse clock through which the light shines through creating an air of pure elegance and luxury. As we walk across some of the 45,000-square feet (4,180m²) of marble, we come to the Explorers Lounge for a glass of delicious bubbles accompanied by – what else – caviar.
Having sampled some of the finer things Regent has on offer we enter the Compass Rose restaurant. As we step through a door in specially cut glass, we enter a room which we can only describe as paradise on earth, a walhala for food lovers and interior design fans. The center is illuminated by a wave of blue crystal while the sides of the room bathe in the light of crystal chandeliers, resembling solar rays from heaven. On the perfectly set tables we see exclusive Versace design plates. Knowing that one plate costs about $300 (€250) we dare not think of accidentally scratching or breaking one at dinner. Luckily they have at least 400 pieces of these – somwehere between art and kitsch – plates onboard Seven Seas Explorer.
Because it is still on the early side for lunch, we decide to walk towards the front of the ship and have a look inside the Constellation Theater . As befits a luxury ship there is a comfortable seat for every passenger. And unlike the theaters onboard some other ships, you don’t get the feeling of sitting on each other’s lap – and latecomers don’t have to crawl over you either – there is plenty of room.
As we leave the theater a delicious coffee aroma, coming from The Café and Coffee Bar, lures us towards the back of the ship in the direction of the Pacific Rim Restaurant.
The gigantic Tibetan prayer wheel at the entrance of Pacific Rim reveals that we are standing in front of an Asian restaurant. Pacific Rim is one of the new specialty restaurants on board
For guests who aren’t big fans of the Asian cuisine, Explorer offers two other specialty restaurants: Chartreuse and Prime 7.
Chartreuse is – part from the name of a tasty liqueur – the restaurant which serves French cuisine with a modern twist. The glamorous interior is characterized by clear yellow-green glass panels (just like the color of the liqueur) against the walls. Compared to the more fragile interior of Chartreuse, steakhouse Prime 7 has a cooler interior that is inspired by the private clubs in London. The dark purple colored walls are decorated with numerous works of art (including some of Picasso’s paintings and drawings) while metal partitions create an intimate atmosphere.
While other cruise lines charge extra for the specialty restaurants onboard Regent Seven Seas these are included, you only have to make a reservation.
For those guests who prefer to create their own culinary experience, Seven Seas Explorer offers the La Veranda self-service restaurant. Contrary to other self-service restaurants, La Veranda doesn’t suffer from a dining hall feeling but instead offers an intimate dining room with fully laid-out tables, just as you would expect from a luxury ship. In the evening part of the restaurant is transformed into Sette Mare at La Veranda offering Italian specialties.
As we continue our visit on deck 11 – the Pool Deck – we walk by the casual Pool Grill and Culinary Arts Kitchen, where kitchen princes and princesses can perfect their culinary arts under the professional guidance of real chefs.
On the Pool Deck itself, the pool and the two hot tubs are surrounded by numerous sunbeds and a wooden spiral staircase giving access to deck 12. Here sports enthusiasts – after their workout in the gym – can walk around on the jogging track, play a game of mini-golf or practice their golf swing.
We decide to leave the jogging course for what it is and head for the Library and Observation Lounge. Just when we thought Seven Seas Explorer could not surprise us any more, we discover the leather(!) floor tiles in the library before dreaming away in the art-deco inspired interior of the Observation Lounge.
To round off our visit to Seven Seas Explorer we briefly explore one of the Concierge Suites. The 140 Concierge Suites offer guests a spacious marble bathroom, a walk-in closet, a large balcony, a sitting and work area and last but not least a heavenly bed. Guests staying in a Concierge Suite can start their luxury experience with a complimentary hotelnight prior to the cruise. While these Concierge Suites offer super luxurious comforts and service, they are not the most expensive suites onboard. This honor is reserved for the Regent Suite.
The 4,443-square feet (more than 400m²) Regent Suite offers two separate bedrooms with private bathrooms, a private wellness with unlimited spa treatments, a living room complete with Steinway grand piano and a terrace with an unforgettable 270 degree view over the bow of the ship. Knowing that the company spent some $150,000 (€125,000) to set-up the bed in the master suite, we realize that a good night’s sleep in this gigantic earthly paradise is something we can only dream about.