Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Regent Seven Seas Cruises is leading the charge for success and innovation in the face of these challenges.
As of September 24, the luxury cruise line once again shattered the company’s previous World Cruise opening day booking record, with reservations for 2023 doubling the previous record set by the 2022 World Cruise. The line experienced the longest waitlist for a World Cruise in its history, with all Penthouse Suites and above selling out within a matter of hours when sales opened on September 23.
In an exclusive interview for Forbes.com, Regent President and Chief Executive Officer Jason Montague told me, by phone, “We actually doubled last year’s record and it shows how much pent-up demand there is for cruising, for an exotic cruise that will hit 72 ports of call.”
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He added, “I am delighted with the response to our latest global voyage, especially considering the unprecedented public health challenges we are currently navigating. This record-breaking 2023 World Cruise launch day demonstrates people’s willingness to take long cruises to exotic lands, their confidence in our product and level of expertise and the substantial appetite for luxury travel our guests have.”
The Regent Seven Seas Mariner, an all-suite, all-balcony ship, will take luxury travelers “Beyond The Horizon,” re-igniting a love for the water by sailing a total of 38,279 nautical miles from Miami to Barcelona, including a full transit of the Panama Canal, and the navigation of three oceans, 14 seas, straits, gulfs, bays and channels.
Though only a few suite categories remain available due to the record-breaking launch day, fares range from $77,999 to $208,999 per guest with every luxury included – such as premium spirits, and unlimited shore excursions. “We offer 356 free shore excursions across our itinerary,” said Mr. Montague. “We implemented a Smartguide system to use your own smartphone and headset to better hear what the tour guide is saying on shore excursions. It enhances the experience for our guests. It’s something we’re just rolling out – as we get back into operations,” according to Mr. Montague.
And here’s more news: Regent has extended its Elevate Your Experience promotion through the end of October, which means guests can enjoy a free-two category upgrade for select sailings in the Mediterranean or Northern Europe in 2021 or upgrade their flights to first-class for select 2021 sailings in Alaska, Canada, and New England. Mr. Montague told me, “As we already include Business Class Air as part of all our inclusive offering on all intercontinental flights we decided to offer guests choosing to sail the Mediterranean or Northern Europe a free two-category suite upgrade, up to a Penthouse suite. With our Elevate Your Experience promotion we have taken the unrivaled experience found across our fleet to new levels.”
Travelers who sail to Europe with the upgraded suite option, which is also available for select 2021 Alaska sailings if they prefer over the free First-Class air, can relax and unwind in their embarkation city with a free one-night pre-cruise hotel stay when they upgrade to a Concierge suite. Or, they can upgrade to a luxuriously appointed Penthouse suite and enjoy additional perks and amenities including a personal butler.
Alternatively, guests can choose to sail to Northern Europe or the Mediterranean with a free two-category suite upgrade, up to a Penthouse suite, on select 2021 voyages. Travelers can relax and unwind in their embarkation city with a free one-night pre-cruise hotel stay when they upgrade to a Concierge suite. Or, they can upgrade to a luxuriously appointed Penthouse suite and enjoy additional perks and amenities including a personal butler.
He added, “Our guests are typically in the 50-plus range and retired and semi-retired as our sailings tend to be on the longer side….seven days in Alaska, up to the 143-night world cruise. The guests who sail on Regent have cruised before – these are experienced cruisers. A Regent experience and the big-ship experiences are different. Guests are seeking smaller more personalized experiences and that is where Regent shines. We focus on delivering the Unrivaled Experience that we promise.”
Part of that experience also included the new Serene Spa and Wellness brand that debuted across its five-ship fleet last winter. Serene Spa and Wellness offers exclusive treatments integrating techniques and ingredients from destinations around the world. It includes globally renowned Elemis facial therapies, body treatments, massages, manicures, luxury Kerastase salon services, fitness classes, and personal training, as well as nutritional cuisine, and a series of wellness tours. These outstanding wellness tours offer curated shore excursions that are designed to enhance wellness through immersive experiences. You might, for example, experience a tai chi class on a beautiful beach on Palma de Mallorca, enjoying a Mediterranean breeze as you strengthen your focus.
Back in the spa, there are wonderful treatments such as a manicure and pedicure featuring South Pacific plumeria (frangipani); a coconut poultice massage from the Caribbean; or a deep-sea heat mask and massage using seaweed from the Baltic coast. Me, I’m all in for the calming rose facial using hand-picked organic English roses from the UK. And this is where you want to book the Regent Suite as it comes with unlimited spa treatments! The Regent Suite is available on Seven Seas Splendor and Seven Seas Explorer.