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Regent Seven Seas Cruises: Seven Seas Navigator

Seven Seas Navigator Cruise Review

With some of the highest space-to-passenger and service ratios at sea, Seven Seas Navigator sails to Alaska in summer months, Canada and New England in autumn’s peak fall foliage season, and spends winters in the Caribbean with an occasional voyage that ventures as far south as the Amazon River.

The first ship outfitted uniquely to Regent Seven Seas' specifications, the Seven Seas Navigator is a particular favorite of returning passengers for its small-ship intimacy, big-ship features, and comfortable, well-designed accommodations, which are all considered suites.

The generous use of wood and the addition of deep-tone accents to the predominantly blue color palette give even the larger lounges an inviting feel. Artwork and elaborate flower arrangements add a bit of sparkle and interest to the somewhat angular modern decor.

Due to the aft location of the two-deck-high main show room, the only lounges that afford sweeping seascapes are Galileo's—typically the most popular public space, with nightly entertainment—and the Vista Lounge. Although views from the Vista Lounge are spectacular, there's no permanent bar, and it's primarily a quiet spot for reading when there are no lectures or activities scheduled there.

The 1994 merger of Radisson Diamond Cruises and Seven Seas Cruise Line launched Radisson Seven Seas Cruises with an eclectic fleet of vessels that offers a nearly all-inclusive cruise experience in sumptuous, contemporary surroundings. The line was rebranded as Regent Seven Seas Cruises in 2006, and ownership passed to Prestige Cruise Holdings (which also owns Oceania Cruises) in 2008.

Even more inclusive than in the past, the line has maintained its traditional tried-and-true formula—delightful ships offering exquisite service, generous staterooms with abundant amenities, a variety of dining options, and superior lecture and enrichment programs. Guests are greeted with champagne on boarding and find an all-inclusive beverage policy that offers not only soft drinks and bottled water, but also cocktails and select wines at all bars and restaurants throughout the ships. Round-trip air, ground transfers, and shore excursions in every port are included in the cruise fare.

On board, casinos are more akin to Monaco than Las Vegas. All ships display tasteful and varied art collections, including pieces that are for sale.

What You Should Know


  • Library is excellent and includes a wide selection of both books and DVDs
  • Fellow passengers might be as wealthy as Midas, but most are unpretentious
  • When nothing on the menu appeals to you, just ask for what you’d really like to have


  • Computer room is next to the library and can cause noise and congestion when Internet use is heavy
  • If you book a suite in the far-aft section of the ship, be prepared for an annoying vibration
  • Unless you prebook tables in specialty restaurants online, you could find them unavailable after boarding
Ship Stats
  • Crew Members 340
  • Entered Service 1999
  • Gross Tons 33,000
  • Length 560 feet
  • Number of Cabins 245
  • Passenger Capacity 490
  • Width 81 feet
  • New

Jun 22, 2015

Western Caribbean

Our Cruise 10 day, Leaving and returning to Miami, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Ship - SS Navigator, To The Western Caribbean, Suite Category D Concierge, Booked with Luxury Cruise & Vacation Specialist/Luxury Cruise Connections To sum up this cruise: Date of Cruise 3/7/15 to 3/18/15 Was it worth the money- NO Would I recommend this cruise - NO Food - 3 out of 5 Service 4 out of 5 Accommodations (Stateroom)

5 out of 5 Shore Excursions - 2 out of 5 Service before the cruise - 5 out of 5 Service after the cruise 1 out of 5 Booking agent before final Payment- excellent, after final payment Poor, after the cruise -No Return Calls This was to be our over the top 25 anniversary cruise for us and our best friends. We had been on several cruises before but wanted something really special. Over all I would give this cruise an average rating and not worth the high end cost. I have been on several cruises, but never an all-inclusive high end cruise. I would never take this cruise again. I'll break it down so you can determine what is valuable to you and if you are willing to pay for few extras you get. Food--The sales pitch was it was like eating in a 5 star restaurant every night. I don't think so; the food was good but not a 5 star standard by any means. I would give it may-be a 3 to 3.5 stars. I had better food on Carnival Cruise lines. They also have a specialty Restaurant, Prime 7 Steak House, which was supposed to be over the top. You had to make reservation at no additional cost. We arrive and were seated by the kitchen in a small and very crowded dining room. There were 4 of us and we had Prime Rib, 2-Ribeye Steaks and surf and turf. I don't think any of us ate it all and not because there was to much food. The steaks and prime rib were tough, the lobster was overcooked and it was just not enjoyable. You did have a 5 course meal every night and they spent a lot of time replacing silverware and dishes, like a 5 star restaurant. Dinner was not a quick affair; it usually took from 2 to 2.5 hours to eat each night. Service was not quick and if you asked for something different, you would have to ask several times. I must say that the wine flowed freely, there was always someone there to re-fill the glass or top them off. The wine as well as all the liquor was top shelf. Breakfast of sausage and eggs consisted of 2 eggs, two small sausages links and 2 small round (about quarter size) home fries. Lunches around the pool were standard fare, Hot dogs, Hamburgers and sandwiches which were very good. They also had a buffet each day with a different theme. Which was OK, they had a Mexican Theme one day that was bad, if they hadn't told us, I don't think I would have known it was Mexican. The staterooms were very nice, very large with a walk-in closet, a large bathroom with both a shower and bath tub. The Cabin Steward great, she kept the room very neat and clean. Turning down the beds at night and making the beds each morning. She was un-noticeable unless you called on her. She was very responsive to every request. The king size bed was one of the best beds I have ever slept on. The refrigerator was stocked with beer, water and sodas and was restocked every day. Bottles of wine would be delivered via room service any time of day. Room service was quick and very good, even the morning breakfast would arrive within 10 to 15 minutes. All of the shows start at 9:30 so we didn't make it to any of them. By the time we finished dinner most of the time the show had already started. They did have tea and game each day which was very entertaining and fun. They would play bingo and trivia games where you could win tickets for prizes from the gift shop. The tea was served with different type's appetizers and small desserts which were very good. Most of the excursions were included with just a few that had an extra charge, but there were plenty of free ones to choose from. But they did not live up to billing either. At our first port, we didn't even stop because the sea was to rough and we couldn't get into the dock. So they just slowed down and took their time to get to the next port. Most of the excursions are lousy, poorly planned and you no longer even get the rest stop with snacks/beverages. I would prefer to pay more for a quality excursion. Now we only go on our own independent tours and have so much more fun. With the Regent Cruises, they arrange your travel and purchase your airline tickets, hotel accommodation, connections from the airport, hotel and the ship. This stage went very well except for one leg, which I will explain later. When we arrived at the airport, there was a representative to meet us at baggage claim. He took our luggage to a staging area where we waited for a couple of other passengers. The airline had lost my wheel chair, so they sent the other passengers to the hotel and sent a special car for my wife and me. The hotel was very nice, a high end hotel, the rooms were very nice and overlooked the Miami harbor. Breakfast was provided in a private meeting room. The room was very crowded and they finally had to set up additional tables. The breakfast was poor at best, powdered eggs and some kind of bacon with some little pastries and some fruit. Not the best start. After breakfast we loaded onto buses for the trip to the boat. This was all handled in a very orderly manner. The luggage was loaded onto the buses and we didn't see them again until we got to our stateroom. However on the return trip from the ship to the airport, this was a nightmare. We left the ship and loaded onto buses in a very quick and orderly method. Much better than any cruise I have ever been on before. When we arrived at the airport, the bus pulled into the back of the airport, an area of the airport I have never seen and looked like a place we shouldn't be. There were no agents or porters, in fact, there were no other people in sight. The bus drivers ask us to stay on the bus while he unloaded the luggage, I know why he wanted to get out of there before we knew what was happening. There were no airport personnel, porters or luggage carts available. There was an airport entrance about 100 yards away which took us into the baggage claim area. Check in was up stairs, so we were left with our luggage, no help and a long way to drag it.

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Aug 13, 2014

seward to vancouver

To celebrate our anniversary ,my wife and I decided to splurge on an Alaskan cruise with the Regent cruise line. We also purchased the airline tickets and the land package ( 1 night hotel stay and transportation from the airport to the hotel etc) As the time for departure approached and we still had not received the information about the land package,we had to call Regent. They discovered that they had forgotten to book the package

and the hotel stay , and promised to get on it and will call us back " the next day". They did not. We had to call them several times. Their excuse was that they were allowed to communicate with their hotel department in Florida only via e- mail ! and had not gotten a response yet. Finally several days and phone calls later! we were assured that everything was taken care of. To be on the safe side , we sent them a short and sweet e- mail asking them to confirm this in writing. Then all hell broke loose . We got very quickly a phone call from a Ms P.H. Everything about her long tirade was haughty ,condescending , and sarcastic : why would we doubt Regent ?; have we not read page 5 ,paragraph 4? ( we had); didn't we see the land package info ? ( we had not as they forgot to include it );and on and on. Mercifully the tirade ended but only after my wife offered to take a picture of that page and send it to her as a proof we are not lonely people calling to chit-chat, or the proverbial customers from hell with time on our hands. Forward 3 days later , and we landed at the Anchorage airport.We proceeded to the Marriott only to discover that we had no on-site greeter, no welcome letter for information or instructions and no luggage ! Apparently since Regent was so late trying to book us a hotel,  they were forced to put us at the Marriott while the rest of their clients were all lodged at the Hilton. They simply forgot to inform their tour operator ! So we had to go to the Hilton to retrieve our luggage.Apologies were given and accepted and we returned to the Marriott. We thought our problems were finally over,until the next morning when we went for breakfast only to discover that our breakfast voucher was for one person only! Now finally the great news : the cruise itself was a dream! The ship was extremely clean, well-maintained and well- organized.The accommodations were superb ( get a balcony if you can afford it ). The entire ship crew was extremely friendly and professional. The food was outstanding. Everything was above reproach.A simply amazing and delightful experience.Nothing short of spectacular ! Regent: Please stop sending me ads and e-mails about your various upcoming cruises : my wonderful experience on the Navigator has not yet completely erased the bad taste in my mouth from the distasteful repulsive attitude of most of your phone representatives at headquarters . Also, Think of assigning few of your delightful ship crew personnel to headquarters : they have a thing or two to teach some of your customer service personnel about friendliness , respect and professionalism.  .   great decent medium get a suite with balcony very nice except customer service in headquarters

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Nov 30, -0001

Rio de Janero to Ft. Lauderdale

Since we had earlier booked the inaugural transatlantic cruise of Holland American’s Prinsendam (the former Royal Viking Sun) plus the following two segments in Western Europe and the Baltic (a total of 37 days), we didn’t feel we could take the full trip from Cape Town, including a pre-cruise safari in South Africa. Instead, we opted for the shorter 14 day Rio to Ft. Lauderdale segment, preceded by the tour to Iguaçu Falls. According to

Brazilian sources, Iguaçu is the world's largest waterfalls. Although challenging to get to and see, the Falls are truly magnificent! Iguaçu is much larger than Niagara, and is said to be taller than Angel Falls in Venezuela. The falls are inland on the Argentina/Brazil border. After a bit of a run-around concerning our flight arrangements (resolved by a cooperative Radisson air rep and our very competent agent, Vicki) we arrived at the Tampa airport early, only to discover the Delta flight scheduled to take us to Atlanta to connect with the flight to Rio was late. Initially the Delta agent (supervisor?) was adamant there was no problem, until the earlier flight to Atlanta, leaving from the gate next to us, had closed up. Then she listened, looked at our tickets, and realized the problem. Eventually, after a big hassle, we were re-routed on an American Airlines flight from Miami, but had to reclaim our bags in Tampa, go through security again, and have bags hand-searched, luckily by a nice, helpful American Airlines porter/security guard(?). And, with no two seats together; we were assigned seats on either side of someone sitting in the middle seat of a 2-3-2 business class row on a Boeing 777. This turned out to be a ploy to get the whole row to himself; when faced with reality, he moved to an aisle seat, so my wife and I were able to sit together, even if not in the most desirable place. Generally, we avoid domestic airlines for international flights when possible, but I must admit that the American Airlines “extra room” tactic certainly gave us room to stretch out. And their service was pretty good, too. Radisson had flown us business class on a Continental 777 from Newark to Rome in the fall of 2000, and we found it to be very good as well, although I believe the AA flight had more leg room. In our opinion, the Boeing 777 is superior to anything else flying commercially today. We had spoken with Radisson reps during the rearrangement of flights, and sure enough, their agent in Rio was expecting us. Things went quite smoothly, and although the security for our bags in notorious Rio seemed casual, everything arrived promptly and safely. Radisson had booked us in the LeMeridien Hotel, directly across Avenue Atlântica from Copacobana Beach. Our room for that night was available, without additional charge, upon check-in before 10 AM. We were in a ocean-front room on the 36th floor, so high the people on the beach looked like ants. So much for girl- (or boy-) watching. After a quiet, security-conscious day and night in Rio (we had an earlier bad experience there), we flew the next morning via San Paulo to the city of Foz do Iguaçu, where we were taken by bus to the Iguaçu Falls National Park. The flights, on Varig, the Brazilian airline, were delightful. Attractive, sharp, well-dressed and -groomed flight attendants. Fast, cheerful service. Quick turn-arounds in San Paulo. The stewardesses served drinks and a snack on the forty-five minute flight to San Paulo, and lunch and drinks on the one hour flight from there to Foz do Iguaçu! Remember how nice air travel used to be in the U.S.? How special it seemed? In Brazil, it still is. Viewing Iguaçu Falls requires a lot of walking and climbing, some of it challenging. The first day, we went by bus, jeep and, after a treacherous climb on steep, un-guarded stairs, zodiac boat up the river right to the base of the falls, getting wet but not soaked. Another, more daring group went right under part of the falls, but it appeared they were prepared, having stripped to the waist or to bikini tops. After a good meal and a night in hard beds in the Spanish Colonial style hotel in the park, in the morning we crossed the Argentine border by bus, where we caught two trains and then took a long hike to the catwalks which extend out over the river 1100 meters to the very edge of the most dramatic part of Iguaçu Falls, the Devil’s Throat. This is a horseshoe shaped section which appeared to be 400 or 500 yards across and perhaps half a mile in length. What a marvelous sight! On the way, we passed the “ruins” of the old catwalk, which collapsed a couple of years earlier. Ah, well. That evening we dined in Paul Bocuse’s restaurant atop the hotel. A good meal, high but not outrageously priced, but nothing spectacular. A view of the lights of Copacobana on a Saturday night. This time we had a ocean-front room on the 14th floor, so we could see the people on the beach. Lovely. At the concierge’s suggestion, we went to the Hippy Market in Ipanema Sunday morning. Held in a park several blocks in from the famous beach, this weekly open air market specializes in local art, crafts and jewelry, with clothing and souvenirs also available. I got Pat a huge topaz and silver necklace. We also bought a very nice modern sculpture, as well as a couple of small limited edition prints, all exceptionally inexpensive. We had a great time. If you’re in Rio on Sunday, don’t miss it! Back at the hotel, we just had time to collect the luggage from our room and grab a drink before catching the bus to the ship. Boarding a Radisson ship is a delightful experience, you are welcomed with a glass of Champagne, and the formalities are handled quickly, efficiently and pleasantly. The only downside here was that the passenger ship terminal in Rio is a long building. They drop you at one end, forcing you to walk quite a distance carrying your hand luggage past yet another gauntlet of hucksters and the inevitable jewelry and other duty-free shops in order to reach the greeting area and gangway. Once there, you’re in Radisson’s friendly, competent hands, but till then, you’re on your own. Because of our other cruise plans, we had asked for the lowest cost cabin available. On Radisson’s Seven Seas ships, all suites are at least 300 sq. ft., and most have balconies. In this case, we got a suite on six deck, port side, without a balcony. Instead, each morning we had seamen outside on a walkway, hosing down and cleaning up. The first morning, a passenger wandered back and forth, lost we presume, but that happened only once. We learned to close the drape before retiring. Cabins on the Seven Seas Navigator are really terrific; spacious, well-furnished and -equipped, exceptionally comfortable. The baths are perhaps the best afloat, with separate tub and shower and a spacious vanity. We don’t miss the double sinks some folks favor, having consciously left them off the plans of the last two houses we’ve built. Everything else was there in abundance, especially large, absorbent towels and bath-sheets and even pool towels! Our cabin stewardess and her helper were just delightful, cheerful, prompt, nice. Actually, that goes for everyone on board the Navigator. We’ve never been on a friendlier ship. Or heard of one. The entire crew seems to go out of their way to be nice, to greet you, to get whatever you want or need. May sound exaggerated, but isn’t. Try it, you’ll see. Knowing passengers joining the ship may not have had lunch, they kept the informal dining room on ten deck, the Portofino, open late. Thoughtful! Lunch was delicious, a nice buffet plus carving and pasta stations, while out on deck, a grill offered hamburgers, hot dogs, etc. On most days, there were two grills outside during lunch, the second with at least four or five choices, including a grilled fish and some kind of steak. They also offered fruit, cheese and other deserts. More than enough; too much, really. That first day our waitress seemed to have a large, busy station, part of which was outside on deck, but we didn’t wait overly long for anything. We soon learned to sit on the other side of the room, in Ann Marie’s area. She’s a very efficient, friendly English girl who seemed to anticipate our needs after only a couple of days. Throughout the cruise, service in all of the dining rooms was excellent to outstanding. After lunch and a couple of hours unpacking into the very spacious cabin and walk-in closet, we explored the ship. Then we were invited on deck for Champagne, to watch as we sailed out of Rio de Janeiro. It was dark, but the lights were a sight themselves, and Sugar Loaf was silhouetted against them. Then, to dinner. We put ourselves in the hands of the Maître D’, Miki, asking him to put us at “a large table with interesting people”. On this and every other evening that we didn’t make our own arrangements, Miki put us with people we enjoyed. We sat with the Staff Captain the first formal evening, and at the Captain’s table twice (the Captain wasn’t there when we were – we sat there when we were with a large group, as it was one of few tables for ten available). Whatever you want, they tried to accommodate you. One night Pat wasn’t feeling up to snuff, so we ate in our suite from the dining room menu. They served us in courses, much as if we were in the Compass Rose restaurant. Classy. On Radisson ships, wine and drinks with dinner are included; no extra charge. The sommelier and his assistants knew their wine, but more important, they quickly got to know their guests. That first night, both the red and white wines served were Burgundies. I much prefer Burgundy to a Bordeaux, for example. The next night, the white was another Burgundy, but the red was Bordeaux. Having had a pleasant experience earlier on the Seven Seas Mariner, I thought I’d try again, and see what happened. I asked if any of the Burgundy they had served the previous night was available. But of course! Almost without delay, there it was. After that, wherever we sat (remember, the main Compass Rose restaurant holds almost 500 passengers when the ship is full) here comes one of the wine stewards asking if we were having the Burgundy tonight? And several knew us by name. One night early on we had dinner with two couples who were “circumnavigators” (i.e., had been on the ship for the entire World Cruise). They were very interesting, talking about the highlights (and the few low spots as well) of the trip to date. One of the men, a digital photography buff, was making an album of the entire cruise, a marvel according to the other couple. Although quite modest, he had been a very senior IBM systems engineer, and had been talked into teaching a three class digital photography and photo album course. I told him I had just bought a digital camera and was interested. One of the drawbacks of cruising on a small ship like the SS Navigator is that there are a limited number of things to do, particularly on sea days, so I welcomed this opportunity Unavoidably, I arrived late for the first class, held in the Stars Lounge outside the large Seven Seas show room. The class was over-subscribed, but we pulled up more chairs and everyone was accommodated. The class itself was very interesting. Ron, the instructor, was a good lecturer, exceptionally knowledgeable about his topic . For the second class, I arrived early to find Ron with a projector, a table, and his own PC, struggling to rearrange the chairs into a classroom layout, so everyone could hear and see the screen. I helped, as did a couple of other early arrivals. The chairs were heavy and not easy to grab on to, so it was difficult to move them. When I spoke to Ron afterward, he said that after the first classes, support for his efforts was basically limited to announcing the class in the ship’s daily newspaper, and providing the projector and screen. Later, I spoke with the officer who ran the computer lab, but he seemed unable to help. When pressed, he suggested I discuss it with the Cruise Director or even the Hotel Director. So I did. This resulted in only real negative in our cruise on the Seven Seas Navigator. I’ve been a bureaucrat myself, and have dealt with them for much of my career. I know when I’m getting the run-around or a brush-off. These guys didn’t even try to hide it. For the only time on board the Navigator, I met with indifference and a defensive, negative attitude. The hotel director explained plans and implied he would get help for the room set-up, but none appeared. Unfortunately, the cruise director happened along when we were breaking the room down the second time, and I spoke with him, but all I got were excuses and BS. This was out of character for the ship and, in fact, for the Radisson line. There may have been something I didn’t understand or know about going on, but it seemed to me that here was an opportunity to give passengers something useful and desirable to do on a boring sea day at little or no cost, yet they ignored it at first, and derided it when questioned head on. Certainly not typical. My wife and I had planned a cruise from (or to) Australia and New Zealand, either on the Navigator this fall or on the Mariner next winter, but our experience this trip caused us to re-think our plan. This cruise was 13 days, calling at four ports: Salvador de Bahia and Fortaleza in Brazil, Bridgetown, Barbados, and San Juan, PR on the way to Ft. Lauderdale. That left nine sea days. We don’t play bridge, and are spoiled by our 45’ lap pool at home. The casino crew went out of their way to drum up interest, running classes for neophytes early on and blackjack tournaments later. We enjoyed that. The library is pretty good, and there are enough computers when the ship has < 350 guest. Just upgrade memory and fix the charge-back software before the next long cruise, please. There were some good speakers, particularly former Attorney General and PA Governor Dick Thornburg (although his wife cut off informal conversation after the lecture, and little or no time was provided for questions.) Prof. Michael Mendelsohn, who talked on a variety of topics, was also quite interesting. But that doesn’t begin to fill up nine days! Now think about expanding that to 45 days, with 19-22 at sea. Gives you something to pause about, doesn’t it. It has us, I’m afraid. A few other observations: We never missed a meal, and the food was good to excellent. Perhaps not as good as the Signatures dining room on the Mariner, maybe even not as good as the Mariner overall. But much more than adequate. We both gained weight, not a lot but some. Pat wished for more variety in the on-board shops. We met quite a few very nice people. In fact, on every Radisson ship we seem to meet nice people. As for entertainment, the Peter Grey Terhune company are attractive, talented, energetic, and they sing and dance well. We found their shows first-rate. The concert pianist was excellent, although we missed her first (best?) show, unavoidably. Larry Hagman was on board and turned out to be rather entertaining speaker, although I never did care for either Dallas or I Dream of Jeanie. All in all, for a smaller ship, we found the entertainment surprisingly good. The ports visited after Rio were less than inspired, in our opinion. We would have liked to cruise up the Amazon a way, or perhaps stop at Devil’s Island. We did go ashore in each of the four ports, but took a tour only in Barbados. That was sponsored by our travel agent’s Voyager Club, but we didn’t think much of it. Of course, we’ve seen a lot of islands. “Free” tours are often worth just what you pay for them. Next year the Mariner’s World Cruise is scheduled to skip Rio, going directly from Ascension Island to Fortaleza. That certainly will be exciting! (NOT!) We’ve compared Radisson’s port selections with some of its competitor lines; in our opinion, we find them sorely lacking. Who plans these trips, anyway, the bookkeeping department? Of course, if you don’t like the itinerary, you don’t have to go. We won’t. On this cruise, the hospitality and excellence of the ship itself, the excursion to Iguaçu, and the time in Rio made the whole thing worthwhile for us. Open single seating in the dining room is a major plus. It puts a real handicap on Crystal, which has two sittings for dinner. Seabourn and Silversea use smaller ships, and you do pay for their “all inclusive” approach. If you’re not a drinker, or don’t use the included amenities, you’re paying for someone who is/does. Radisson balances this well, we think: drinks with dinner and an initial setup in your room are included, as are non-alcoholic beverages. After that, you pay for what you use. Works for us. All things considered, we’ll be aboard Radisson again, selectively. Actually, we did book two future cruises while on this one. The first is the inaugural cruise of the new Seven Seas Voyager, which follows the shakedown cruise we’ve been invited on. Not worth it to fly to Europe for one week. We also booked a Montreal to Palm Beach cruise on the Navigator for the Fall of 2003, itinerary unseen. But now that we’ve seen details and ports of call, we don’t think we’ll pick up our option. A real disappointment! We were so looking forward to Newport and Charleston or Savannah. We do like Radisson, we like it a lot, in fact, but improvements are needed in a couple of key areas. Some of the annoyances would be quite easy to fix, we feel. Like cross to Montevideo and Buenos Aires, then round Cape Horn and up the Pacific Coast to LA on the SS Mariner World Cruise next year.

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Nov 30, -0001


My husband and I, who are both I our fifties, went on our first cruise June 11-18, 2003 on the NYC/Bermuda cruise on the Radisson Navigator. The line offered a two-day stay in NYC, at the Waldorf, with Broadway tickets thrown in – we saw the revival of “42nd Street” which was great. As most of May and June in the northeast was rain, we were delighted when we

arrived in NYC and the sun was out. It stayed out for our two days at the Waldorf, which was great for touring around NYC. For those folks who haven’t been to NYC in a while, GO! It is clean, and safe, and better than ever! And I say that as a former inhabitant of the city…our two days there were great, although the rooms at the Waldorf could use some updating. Embarkation went smoothly, and the reception was great. The ship is gorgeous, and everything about our suite was lovely. We had a butler, but I’m still not sure what butlers are supposed to do, other than bring us breakfast and snacks in the afternoon. The pool deck, which we were on, also housed the Portofino Grill, where we ate dinner twice, and breakfasted often. The manager of that restaurant, Melanie, was lovely and extremely helpful and courteous. The food, other than the night of the visiting chef, was terrific northern Italian, and the service, as in the other restaurant, the Compass Rose, was superb. The pool itself was terrific, even if some parents brought their small children – why, I’ll never know – this is not a cruise for kids – and they were a bit taken aback when some people expressed their dismay with the kids’ yelling and splashing while most people were quietly sunbathing or reading. We had a day at sea en route to Hamilton, and the ship is amazingly quiet and smooth. The dock in Hamilton is on Front Street, right in the shopping district. We didn’t avail ourselves of any excursions, as we prefer to wander on our own, and we hired a local cabbie for a three-hour tour. He charged us only $70 for an insiders look at the entire island; it’s best beaches, and famous attractions. We went to a perfumerie, and some great and scenic areas where he was good enough to take our photos. I was impressed by Bermuda’s lack of poverty and its full employment – both significant deterrents to crime, and felt very safe the entire time we were there. I only wished we stayed there longer. We left there on Sunday morning, arriving in St. Georges a few hours later – a spectacular feat of navigation getting into the harbor, by the way, through a tight passage. However, the shops in St. Georges were closed on Sunday – so much for Radisson’s contribution to the local economy – and we left there at 4 pm, for reasons I have yet to have adequately explained to me. We then spent a day at sea, and on Tuesday morning, rode through the east coast rain to arrive at dismal Norfolk, VA. Why Norfolk Virginia? To pick up more passengers presumably, who would then stay on board the next day in NYC when we got off. But there is nothing to do in Norfolk, VA on any day, much less a day of rain. What was really distressing is the attitude of the crew as soon as we left St. George, service started slipping – it was if it was over, the crew knew it, but no one told the passengers. Breakfast was delayed, and the wait staff seemed to lose interest in us – and we still had two days to go! The entire ship went into “cleaning mode”—the pool and spas were drained and netted over, and everyone was cleaning, scrubbing, and there was nothing to do all day in Norfolk. There was an excursion to Williamsburg, but the folks that went said it was difficult to enjoy in the rain. At $700 a day, I would have much preferred either an additional day in Hamilton, or another day in St. Georges – I had enough of rain before I left, thank you! Sitting in my stateroom on Tuesday morning during the cleaning binge, I was startled to have a man swing up on my decks via some ropes he was attached to while scrubbing the side of the ship. He then knocked on my window, and dumbfounded, I opened the sliding door. Knee-high wet boots and all, he asked to cut through my room! I was too shocked to say anything as he tramped through the room, averting his eyes upon passing the bathroom door, which was open, and where my husband was taking a shower! Worse than that, when we complained about it, no one seemed to care. They were in that “its over” mode, for sure. The entertainment on board left a lot to be desired, too. although the show dancers were pretty good, the comedian they had on one night was embarrassingly awful. And oh, yes, the internet on board was spotty, not enough computers for the people who wanted to use them, and they carged for a service I think should be offered to free, considering what they charged the passengers. Perhaps they ought to look into wireless access for the staterooms. This attitude carried over the next day during disembarkation in NYC. Our baggage was collected the night before, and at 9 am that morning, everyone was required to wait on one deck, even the people that had just boarded in Norfolk were restrained from going anywhere until the ship was cleared by Customs, which wasn’t until noon. So we all sat for three hours waiting to go, unable to do much of anything. We missed our train to Boston, and had to run to catch the next one. I just think that for the prices that they charged us, they could’ve been a bit more amenable. I also did not understand how so many people we met on board who reserved lesser grade cabins than we did, and were first-timers like us, were automatically upgraded into higher-grade suites. There seemed no rhyme or reason to the way they did that, either. All in all, it was very luxurious, but for the prices they charged, I think we’ll have a better vacation at one destination, at a hotel. I loved Bermuda, and we’ll go back there, but we’re going to fly the two hours it takes to get there from Boston, and stay in one of their first-class hotels for the entire week-and still spend less than we spent on Radisson.

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Nov 30, -0001

Western Caribbean

Radisson Seven Seas Navigator Docked in Key West The Setup I was the cruise escort and seminar facilitator for a small group of 14 on the Radisson Seven Seas Navigator. This was my first experience on the Navigator and I was looking forward to sailing on her, as I had heard nothing but positive comments from those that had. The Ship The Radisson Seven Seas Navigator is a 6-star ship that has a reputation for some of the best

cabins, dining and service of any cruise ship. She is a small ship at only 33,000 gross tons, 560 feet in length, 81 feet in width and with a passenger capacity of only 490 lucky guests. Radisson is well known as a luxury line and the Navigator is one of the newer ships in their fleet of five. Cabin #850: Cabin 850 (Balcony Cabin) I was treated to an outside cabin with a balcony on deck 8 (cabin 850) and immediately fell in love with it the second I entered its 356 square feet. Cabin Bathroom The cabin was quite deep and offered a large bathroom with both a shower and a bathtub. There was ample room for storage and the ambiance was rich and comfortable. Down the hallway was the door to the walk-in closet with ample storage for your entire wardrobe. There is also a substantial chest of drawers inside the closet for additional storage. The wood hangers, bathrobes and wood finish reminded me that I was on a very special ship. The bedding is of the highest quality and the queen-sized bed that I enjoyed allowed me a wonderful night’s rest every night. Cabin Desk Area The best area for my purposes was the desk and sitting area. I easily set up my computer and was able to get tons of work done in comfort. The refrigerator was stocked with water and soft drinks (all complimentary) Upon arrival; Radisson offers each cabin their choice of two bottles of liquor. Since I don’t drink anything but wine, I was able to select two bottles of Chardonnay that were delivered and promptly included in the refrigerator. Another treat that I especially enjoyed was the fruit bowl that was kept full on top of the refrigerator. I enjoyed the fresh fruit daily. The television offered a full menu of programming, as well as a VCR. The balcony was easily reached through the sliding door that offered effortless access. The two deck chairs did not recline so that one could lie in the sun, but did offer a comfortable place to sit in the afternoon sun when it was shining on the port side of the ship. It was quite private and I was never aware of anyone on either side of my balcony. Cabin Interior The cabin’s rich wood paneling and molding, along with the wall treatments added a very special and rich feel to it. All in all, the cabin was one of the best I had even enjoyed on a ship. A Tour of the Ship (Click Here for a Deck Plan) Deck 12 The Vista Lounge Exploring the Seven Seas Navigator is done quite easily. Beginning with the forward elevator bank, we will go to the top floor, deck 12. As we exit the elevator and move all the way forward we arrive at the Vista Lounge. This is where we had our seminar and it was an excellent place to meet. The lounge offers a place to escape other passengers when you want peace and solitude to simply relax or read a book. It is rarely used and the times I went there, I had it all to myself. Aerobics Room The Fitness Center resides on the starboard side directly behind the Vista Lounge and offers both an aerobics room and a weight room. Fitness Weight Room There were limited free weights and a Universal machine. For a ship of this size it was adequate, but I chose to pass on working out based on the equipment. The Judith Jackson Sea Spa The Judith Jackson Sea Spa and Salon occupies the port side of deck 12 and while I did not use the services of the spa, those that did raved about it. (The Beauty Salon resides on deck 11) There is an outside deck that surrounds deck 12 that offers excellent views of the pool area and the forward area in front of the Vista Lounge. View of the Pool Area from Deck 12 Deck 11 Galileo's Galileo's Bar The forward area of deck 11 consists of passenger suites and the aft area is the home of Galileo’s, a wonderful lounge that offers soothing dance music every evening. Galileo’s is used for many different purposes and is a spectacular lounge. Deck 11 also offers a circular jogging track that circles the entire ship. Deck 10 Deck 10 Pool Area Pool Bar The forward part of deck 10 is committed to passenger suites and the pool area is located mid ship. The pool area offers a pool bar, the swimming pool itself, two Jacuzzis and the pool grill where lunches are prepared for those choosing to take lunch by the pool. In addition to the usual cheeseburgers, chicken and fish sandwiches are prepared and there are salads and other condiments to enhance your meal. The Pool Grill There is always fresh cut fruit (papaya, cantaloupe, water melon, pineapple, plums and sometimes kiwi and mango) There is always fresh baked cookies to enjoy, as well. Pool Side Bar-B-Que On days at sea, the chefs break out the bar-b-ques and cook up a luncheon buffet that is to die for. The pool is never crowded and the lounge chairs are of high quality. They are covered with a thick and comfortable mattress and then fresh towels are always found on the lounge chairs when you sit down. Entrance to the Portofino Grill Restaurant Aft on deck 10 is where the Portofino Grill is located. Portofino Grill Buffet The Portofino Grill is the location of the breakfast and luncheon buffets and then turns into the alternative-dining venue in the evening. Breakfast sees an ample offering of fresh fruit, breakfast meats and eggs, yogurt, specialty egg dishes cooked to order, nuts (macadamia, filbert, pecans, etc.) lox, breads and much, much more. Lunch saw an equally diverse buffet that always offered a main dish everyone loved. The service level in the Portofino Grill for breakfast and lunch was extremely high. Someone would always carry your plate while you were being seated and a waiter was always available to serve coffee, juice, and specialty egg dishes, or anything else you might want. Decks 9 and 8 These are entirely comprised of passenger suites Deck 7 The Navigator's Boutiques The forward section of deck 7 is entirely passenger suites and the public area starts just aft of the forward elevator bank with the ship’s boutiques. There is a large jewelry store and also a large clothing store that also serves as the general store for incidentals and logo items. Casino Tables The casino takes up the rest of the space between the forward and aft elevator banks. The casino was the most popular area of the ship. The Casino Bar The casino bar was quite active and the tables and slot machines were always popular. As a non-gambler, I had fun hanging out in the bar watching the action on occasion Casino Slots The upper level of the Seven Seas Lounge is accessed from the rear elevator bank and offers a good number of seats (including some seating designed for single passengers. Deck 6 Reception Desk Tour Desk Once again, the forward section of deck 6 is allocated for passenger suites only. Just aft of the forward elevator bank is the ship’s registration and tour desks. The registration desk is manned 24 hours a day and the tour desk’s hours are clearly posted. Library (Both Books and VCR Tapes) and the Internet Cafe On the starboard side just aft of the registration desk is the ship’s Library and Internet Café. I logged lots of time in the Internet Café and was pleased with its speed and charges. You are only charged for the actual amount of download and upload time, not the amount of time you were on-line. It was not unusual for me to have a 45-minute session and only have it cost a couple of dollars. The library offered a large selection of videos for use in your cabin (on your TV’s VCR) and also many books and newspapers to enjoy. Navigator Lounge Bar Directly across from the library is the Navigator Lounge. Every morning, coffee, juice, rolls and fruit were available in the Navigator Lounge and I found it an excellent alternative to eating a larger breakfast in the Portofino Grill. Specialty coffee drinks were also available from the bar in the Navigator Lounge. The Navigator Lounge In the evening, the lounge took on the persona of an intimate entertainment venue with soft music being offered along with cocktails. Connoisseur Club Just aft of the Navigator Lounge was the Connoisseur Club. We had our welcome cocktail party here in this intimate room that also serves as the ship’s cigar and brandy club. This was a great place for folks that enjoyed cigars for an after dinner smoke and brandy. The rich leather chairs gave the club that “private club” feeling. Photo Shop The ship’s photo shop and the ship’s art auction were both found on the starboard side right behind the library. The ship’s photographer seemed to be everywhere and the photo shop was open most evenings. Card Room Finally, on the starboard side right before the aft stairwell is where the card room was located. The card room was always full of folks that enjoyed bridge and I believe there were some formal bridge lessons that took place in the card room. Stars Lounge Stars Lounge Dance Floor Aft of the aft stairwell is where the Stars Lounge was located. The Stars Lounge offered a piano bar atmosphere in the evening and then converted to the ship’s disco at 11:30 pm or so. I visited the Stars Lounge a couple of times and never found it crowded. The Seven Seas Lounge The Stars Lounge is also the entrance (and main bar) to the lower level of the ship’s main show lounge, the Seven Seas Lounge. Deck 5 Compass Rose Restaurant Entrance Once again, the entire forward section of deck 5 is all passenger cabins. Aft of the forward stairwell is the main entrance to the Compass Rose Restaurant, the ship’s main dining venue. The Compass Rose Restaurant The Compass Rose Restaurant is a beautiful restaurant that makes good use of its location in the ship. There is also an entrance to the restaurant from the rear stairwell making entering the restaurant very easy if everyone shows up at the same time. Typical Compass Rose Restaurant Presentation The menus vary each night, but always include choice of appetizers, soup, salad, pasta, a main entrée and dessert. The service is impeccable and the food preparation gourmet. The Cruise Monday, April 12th, 2004; Ft. Lauderdale, Florida I had just debarked the MSC Lirica and made my way to the pier that the Seven Seas Navigator was docked at. I arrived to an air-conditioned terminal with extremely friendly staff helping me check my bag and take a seat before check-in opened for the cruise. At around 12:30 check-in began and I was through security and checked in by 12:40. Once on the ship, we were escorted into the Compass Rose Restaurant for lunch while our cabins were prepared for occupancy. Lunch was the first hint at the outstanding dining we were looking forward to. After lunch, I made my way to my cabin (#8050 on deck 8 midship). I was pleasantly surprised with my cabin, as it was simply beautiful. Its generous size, the rich wood paneling, the wall treatments, the artwork, it was just wonderful. I settled in setting up my computer and printer and proceeded to the registration desk to finalize the details for the group. When I returned to my cabin, my luggage was already there, so I unpacked, concentrated on preparing a flyer with the evening’s cocktail party and seminar schedule. I delivered the flyers and spent some time working on my computer. Our group cocktail party was scheduled for 6:30 in the Connoisseur Club and we met right on time. We were treated to an open bar and hot and cold appetizers for an hour before dining in the Compass Rose Restaurant. Dinner brought a fabulous epicurean experience that set the stage for the entire cruise. Our group immediately bonded and we were looking forward to a wonderful cruise experience. After dinner I attended a wonderful show presented by Mr. Marty Henne, who played the piano and sang many Gershwin favorites. I slept like a newborn baby in the wonderful bedding. Tuesday, April 13th, 2004; Day at Sea This was the day of our seminar and after a wonderful buffet breakfast in the Portofino Grill, I made my way to the Vista Lounge where we met for our seminar. Unfortunately, the bad weather was still with us and we were moving about quite a bit, however everyone made it through the seminar. At 11 AM we were treated to a ship inspection by the onboard cruise consultant. Our group made its way to the Portofino Grill for lunch and simply relaxed in the wonderful dining venue. The Portofino Grill offers a very complete luncheon buffet that is to die for and everyone thoroughly enjoyed it. I chose to spend the afternoon working in my cabin, as the weather and ocean conditions seemed to be worsening by the hour. This evening was the only formal night during the cruise, so I dressed in my tuxedo and made my way to the Captain’s Welcome Aboard cocktail party that took place in the Seven Seas Show Lounge. Unfortunately, the poor weather had taken its toll and few people were in attendance for the wonderful party. Dinner in the Compass Rose Restaurant saw few people dinning and while the meal was superb, the lack of people made the restaurant feel vacant. After a lingering dinner, I decided to attend the evening’s entertainment, a comedian named Kenny Smiles. Mr. Smiles’ act is one that walks a narrow path between very funny and obnoxious. He counts on the audience for interaction that he turns into humor. He had some very funny banter and some not so funny. I left towards the end of the show having tired of his attempts at humor. Wednesday, April 14th, 2004; Progreso, Mexico We arrived in Progreso right on schedule. This was my first visit to Progreso and I was interested to explore it. The Seven Seas Navigator docked at the cruise ship terminal, which is located some 7 kilometers from the shore on one of the world’s longest piers. It is necessary to either take a taxi or the free shuttle from the cruise terminal into town and walking it is not allowed due to the traffic on the pier. I chose to take a taxi and it dropped me right in front of the open-air market in Progreso. Progreso is relatively new to cruise ship tourism and while it is very popular as a beach resort with Mexicans, it still retains its unique Mexican village flavor. I explored Progreso for hours and then decided to make my way back to the ship to spend the afternoon by the pool in the improving weather. Our group met at our usual time and place for pre-dinner cocktails and then made our way to the Compass Rose Restaurant for another fabulous culinary dinning experience. This evening was the first stage production of the “Peter Grey Terhune Singers and Dancers” and it was wonderful indeed. Entitled “Tonight on Broadway”, the group’s capacity for entertainment really dazzled those in attendance. Thursday, April 15th, 2004; Cozumel, Mexico We arrived in Cozumel right on schedule and prepared to tender into the Punta Langosta pier on one of the shore-side tenders that was quite large. Our stop in Cozumel was only for 4 hours so I decided to revisit Chankanaab State Park to do a special report for One thing that strikes me, having watched Cozumel go from a sleepy fishing and diving village to the tourist Mecca that it has become, is the elimination of anything that resembles Mexico or Mexican from the town itself. Modern stores are everywhere, all of the shops one used to find only in St, Thomas are now dominant in the shopping district and even good old Carlos and Charlie’s’ now resides in the new Punta Langosta Shopping Mall. I immediately hailed a taxi to take me to Chankanaab ($10 one way) I arrived quite early and was treated to the park for about an hour before folks started showing up in droves. I was pleasantly surprised at all of the improvements that had been made at the park, but then realized that the last time I had visited Chankanaab was with my son when he was about 10 years old (he is now 20). (Do take a moment to read the special report on the park if you are considering it as an option for the day). We departed Cozumel sharply at 1 PM to make the run to Grand Cayman Island. Back on board, I fell into my routine of having a light lunch by the pool and enjoying the sunshine for a couple of hours before returning to my cabin to work on my computer for the late afternoon. Early evening found us at our usual meeting place in Galileo’s only to find that the repeater’s party was taking place at the same time. Unfortunately, our group mingled into the party before realizing what was going on. I felt very uncomfortable about the intrusion we had mistakenly made and apologized to the social hostess who must have wondered what the heck we were doing. We had made reservations for our group in the alternative restaurant, the Portofino Grill and arrived right on time to be seated at two adjoining tables. We had one of the best dining experiences on this cruise with everything the entire meal being “simply perfect”. The menu in the Portofino is absolutely wonderful and I would encourage everyone to dine there as often as possible. We vowed to get back to the Portofino Grill before the end of the cruise. This evening’s entertainment was another performance by Mr. Kenny Smiles. I attended his show and found his humor the same as the last time. He walked that fine line between funny and obnoxious and once again, I left early for a nightcap in Galileo’s before turning in. Friday, April 16th, 2004; Georgetown, Grand Cayman Island I awoke to a beautiful day and after a quick breakfast, decided to spend the day on the ship rather than go ashore. Grand Cayman is a great port, but after having been there a good number of times, a day on the ship by myself sounded like a great idea. I enjoyed the sun, had a great pool side lunch, took a few Jacuzzi sessions and then made my way to my cabin to get some work done about 3 PM. All in all, it was one of the best days of the cruise for me. Evening found our group meeting at the same time in Galileo’s for a cocktail before dining in the Compass Rose restaurant once again. Dinner on the Navigator is a very special time. There is lots of conversation, superb service from a very attentive waitstaff, free flowing wine that never sees an empty glass and wonderful gourmet cuisine, that comes one course after another. It would truly be difficult to maintain one’s weight on the Seven Seas Navigator and while I normally have a good amount of self-control when it comes to my diet on a ship, I admit to eating way too much and enjoying things I would normally never eat. I vowed to take the extra weight I was sure to gain off the second I got home. This evening’s show was another review from the “Peter Grey Terhune Singers and Dancers” in a show entitled “Those Were the Days”. It was outstanding and the talented young people performing should be extremely proud of their ability to entertain a diverse crowd. They were exceptional and this is a huge compliment from someone who doesn’t really care for reviews all that much, and usually can’t find much positive to say about them. I teamed up with a couple from Seattle that was with our group and ended up staying up way too late in the disco before turning in. Saturday, April 17th, 2004; Day at Sea Arriving in Key West, Florida at 9 PM We were blessed with another perfect day and after breakfast I took a position by the pool to enjoy the morning’s warmth. I relaxed in the sunshine for several hours, enjoyed the poolside bar-b-que that consisted of various salads, corn on the cob, bar-b-qued beans, baked potatoes and your choice of meats. They bar-b-qued swordfish, yellow fin tuna steaks, steak, chicken, European sausages and fresh peppers and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the meal. I had planned the afternoon working in my cabin and enjoyed the ample workspace that the desk provided me. We had made reservations for the Portofino Grill for dinner, so after the evening’s early show (Mr. Marty Henne doing “Songs That You Know, by Artists That You Don’t”) and our usual cocktail period in Galileo’s, we made our way down to the Portofino Grill. We were assigned the same tables that we had enjoyed on Thursday night and were then treated to another wonderful dinner that absolutely exceeded everyone’s expectations. We arrived in Key West, cleared immigration and then a group of us made our way into Key West to enjoy the rowdy Saturday night on Duval Street. Sloppy Joe’s was packed with characters so we stopped at Rick’s Bar across the street and were treated to songs by “Uncle Bob” a colorful local entertainer that sings songs everyone knows and enjoys. After a bit, I returned to the ship and thoroughly enjoyed my sleep. Sunday, April 18th, 2004; Key West, Florida Key West is a great port. It offers everything anyone could want. Shopping, sightseeing, beaches, museums with lots of history and what seems like endless possibilities for exploring. I wanted to take some pictures for the Key West port review in I walked the length of Duval Street and took a good number of pictures. I also visited the Mel Fisher Museum to view the treasures found in shipwrecks off of Key West. While the store had some interesting items for sale, I found the museum not really worth the $10 admission fee and would not recommend it, unless you are keenly interested in such things. We departed Key West for Ft. Lauderdale at 6 PM sharp and were treated to the Captain’s Farewell Party in the Seven Seas Lounge. Champagne, caviar and other appetizers flowed freely as the ship’s crew bid their guests a fond farewell. It was a very nice way to end the cruise. We met for our final meal together in the Compass Rose Restaurant and the dinner conversation continued until we were the last table to leave. Tonight was the final performance of the Peter Grey Terhune Singers and Dancers and they did a performance of the music and dance from the 70's and 80's. This was the best of their three performances (all three were excellent). They had everyone singing and swaying to their very talented performance and received a standing ovation when they were finished. I went back to my cabin to begin packing and wished I were staying on the ship for another week. Monday, April 19th, 2004; Ft. Lauderdale, Florida We were docked and cleared by immigration quite early and after a wonderful last breakfast in the Portofino Grill; I made my way to my cabin, grabbed my luggage and was off the ship in minutes. It was the most painless debarkation I had ever experienced. Summary The Radisson Seven Seas Navigator met or exceeded all of my expectations. The cabin was extremely comfortable, the service superb and the dining world class. I especially loved the size of the Navigator and its huge space ratio making the entire experience feel more like a private yacht, rather than a cruise ship. I would highly recommend the Navigator to anyone wanting a quality cruise experience.

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