I couldn’t believe my eyes when I received an invitation to go on the new Regent Seven Seas Explorer for a special 2 night travel trade sailing roundtrip from LA!
There has been so much hype about the Explorer which is billed as “The Most Luxurious Ship Ever Built”. I have to say it totally exceeded my expectations and more! It was one of the most amazing luxury travel experiences I have been fortunate to enjoy so far! It truly felt like we were on the most luxurious hotel, well a floating hotel at sea!
Craig, one of our Travel Specialists joined me from the office and we set off for a whirlwind weekend!
Embarkation was straight forward at the Los Angeles Cruise Port (about 25 mins south of LAX). The minute we got onboard we were greeted by a line of welcoming staff and handed a glass of champagne. You instantly saw the huge crystal chandelier hanging from the ceiling and my immediate thought was WOW!
They had a live jazz band playing to welcome us all as well! Look at the elevators - such a stunning design!
Our rooms weren’t quite ready so we took our bags to the luggage valet and headed to Deck 11 to have some lunch. Deck is 11 is where the Pool, Hot Tubs, Grill and La Veranda Buffet are. We headed to the buffet for lunch as we were quite hungry by this point. We didn’t know where to start as there were different types of delicious looking food everywhere. When we sat down with our first plate we were greeted by the friendly waitress who asked us what we wanted to drink. As soon as we said wine she told us she would bring the sommelier straight over. This was an immediate difference I noticed compared to the ships I had been on before. Not only were the wines included, there were a number to choose from! I personally love an oaky Chardonnay so the sommelier immediately brought me over a fresh bottle of the Californian Wente Chardonnay (which happens to be one of my favourites). I knew at that point we were in for a weekend full of over indulgence and luxury!
By the time we had finished our lunch (and had a couple of glasses of wine), our room was then ready so we excitedly opened the door to see what our suite would be like! We were in Suite 845 – which is a S1 Category – a Superior Suite (about 3 categories up from the entry level cabin). It was such a spacious suite, at 322 sqft . We had the twin bed configuration and there was a bottle of champagne on ice waiting for us in our living room. We had a good sized balcony complete with table and two chairs. There was also a huge walk in closet - if only I had one of those in my own home!
The bathroom was outstanding- full marble, we had a double sink vanity, separate deep bath tub and a rain shower! If only my bathroom at home was this luxurious! It did not feel like we were on a ship at all. This was particularly impressive because even on other ships I have experienced, many had done a nice job of trying to make the bathroom feel luxurious but ultimately you still knew/felt like you were on a ship. All of the accommodations on the Explorer are all-suite, all-balcony so really you can’t go wrong whatever you choose!
Dinner arrangements were pre-planned by the Regent team due to the nature of this voyage. We got very lucky with our selection and the first night we got to dine at one of the Specialty restaurants, Prime 7 – which was, you guessed it, the steak house! It was absolutely fantastic! We were on a table with a couple from Edmonton and we enjoyed great food and fun conversation. Another Sommelier came over and was able to describe and offer some lovely choices to complement our meal. For my appetizer I had the Ahi Tuna & Avocado stack and for my main I had the 10oz Filet Mignon- Medium Rare and it was cooked to perfection!
We then headed to the Show Theatre to catch the evening entertainment. The Theatre was beautifully designed over two levels with comfortable seats and full bar service to our table. After the show we headed to meet friends in the Meridian Lounge. Top shelf spirits were on tap and it was fun trying the different cocktails! They had a fabulous drink menu. To end the night we headed to the Observation Lounge which turns into a nightclub style lounge at night complete with live DJ.
My colleague Craig and I smiling away loving life onboard!
On Saturday we woke up and had already docked in Port- we had the day in Ensenada, Mexico. The sun was shining and the sky was that beautiful rich blue colour I love- the heat was welcomed after leaving a chilly and wet Vancouver!
We decided to order room service breakfast and I was impressed with the speed of service and quality of the breakfast. Everything was cooked to perfection and the fresh pressed juices were wonderful!
We then decided to explore some of the ship before we headed out for the afternoon. First stop was the spa; the Explorer is home to the largest Canyon Ranch Spa at sea - it was massive, with two well equipped gyms, lots of treatment rooms, a beautiful infrared sauna (which played relaxing music inside) and steam room (with 4 aromas to choose from)! The design was spectacular and there was even glass floor to look down on the infinity pool!
We had a sneak peek of the Pacific Rim, which is their Pan-Asian restaurant, it was absolutely stunning! No details left untouched.
Even the general common areas were just spectacular on this ship!
I wanted to make the most of travelling with Regent and with that comes the choice of a number of complimentary excursions in all ports. I opted for the “Taste of Mexico” excursion where we had a tour of Ensenada (not much to see if I am honest) and then we were dropped off at this Mexican restaurant where we would start our interactive cooking class. It was different to what I was expecting as we weren’t stood around kitchen counters and live cooking stations but the excursion was fun nevertheless. We made salsa from scratch and then made corn tortilla cups, "Pelizcadas" .
There is actually an amazing state-of-the-art culinary kitchen onboard the Explorer- sadly we didn't get an opportunity on this trip but I would highly recommend signing up for a class if you are sailing on this beautiful vessel!
I was happy to get back on board to continue enjoying the amenities on this stunning ship as time was quickly running out. I headed straight to the main pool deck and enjoyed a Mojito which is a perfect beverage to have during the late afternoon sun.
I then did a few laps in the main swimming pool, and it just felt amazing. They have done a spectacular job of finishing everything to the highest standard – the tiles in the pool were a turquoise colour which shimmered with the suns reflection.
I then joined some fellow guests in the hot tub and we exchanged stories about travelling around the world. The sun was starting to set and then the loud horn signalled that we were about to leave the port so I rushed round to the aft of the ship to enjoy the incredible infinity pool at the back of the ship.
It was a surreal experience to be floating in this pool as the ship pulled away from the dock and the city’s lights started to glisten as the sun set over the mountains. It was a magical moment!
Early evening we were invited to the Virtuoso agencies cocktail reception hosted in the Observation deck. Servers were passing delicious canapes and the champagne was flowing. That evening our dinner was allocated to the main dining room, the beautiful Compass Rose We had open dining which was nice as we had no dining time restrictions. The Explorer had custom-made Versace plates designed for the ship. As I say, no detail were left untouched!
Tonight’s entertainment was a Comedian - he was pretty funny. When you sail on a regular 7 night or more sailing I know Regent offer a fantastic range of entertainment options! After the show we went to the Explorer Lounge to listen to the live jazz band and enjoy more cocktails. It’s so great as all top shelf is included, so yes if I wanted Belvedere Vodka in my French Martini it was no problem!
On Sunday morning we had to disembark before 9am, there was a sadness on the ship as no one wanted to leave. Our Sales Rep joked that she would have to call security to get us all to leave our rooms! We had a final breakfast at La Veranda and sadly made our way to the transfer coaches.
It was a surreal weekend on what I can confirm must be the most luxurious ship on the seas. Now I just need to work out how I can find some vacation time to book myself on the beautiful Explorer for a full week or longer vacation!
For more information or to book a cabin on the Regent Seven Seas Explorer please contact me for more details!