Ultra-luxury cruise line Regent Seven Seas has launched its inaugural Christmas cruise aboard Seven Seas Splendor this season, offering guests the ultimate festive getaway with all the trimmings.
Expectations are high for the 20-night tropical all-inclusive cruise, which costs up to £220,000 for passengers staying in the exclusive £11,000-per-night Regent Suite. The most expensive and luxurious residence on the high seas, it includes a Picasso painting, $200,000 bed, private butler, complete bar and an in-suite spa.
From the preparation loading and decorating of the ship to the actual cruise itself, the ship’s 542 staff work around the clock to deliver an extraordinary Christmas experience for up to 750 passengers on the cruise, which sails from the magic city of Miami to the most desirable destinations in the Caribbean (including Antigua, St Kitts and Great Stirrup Cay private island in the Bahamas).
The ship is laden with stacks of festive treats for guests to tuck into
Led by Cruise Director John Barron, the ship is completely transformed for the Christmas voyage with 70 boxes of Christmas decorations at a value of almost £70,000. The ship’s festive look includes three large Christmas trees in the atrium, 15 trees sprucing up the rest of the ship and a 260-foot garland adorning the central staircase.
“Our crew have pulled out all the stops, and decked the halls with the most beautiful decorations, to make this a truly magical Christmas voyage for our guests. This is a particularly special festive season for us with Seven Seas Splendor celebrating her first Christmas at sea with guests,” said Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ managing director Graham Sadler.
As well as being fully decked out in tasteful Christmas décor, the ship is laden with stacks of festive treats for guests to tuck into – including eight varieties of traditional American Christmas cookies, 1,000 portions of pumpkin pie and 200 chocolate yule logs.
Stocked to the brim with 200lbs of geese, 600lbs of turkeys, 200lbs of ham, 20 different types of cheese and more than 38,000 bottles of wine, the cruise is all set to serve up an extraordinary Christmas feast too.
An unforgettable experience of festive-themed nights
Christmas cruises sell fast and are popular for good reason, according to cruise director John Barron: “What better way to see in Christmas and the New Year than on a luxury cruise? You don’t have any washing up or tidying up, plus they’re always in the sun!” he says.
“We aim to create a warm and festive atmosphere for both our guests and crew with an unforgettable experience of festive-themed nights, other fun activities and of course lots of food and drink – all on Regent, naturally!”
The preparation for the cruise has been captured for TV documentary World’s Most Expensive Christmas Cruise airing on Channel 5 this Christmas Eve at 8pm: “This is the sixth episode we’ve filmed so I’m getting used to having a TV crew on board,” says Barron. “We did a four-part series and a Christmas Special in 2019 and the response was fantastic – I’ve met so many guests who have booked a cruise after seeing the programme. We’ll be filming another series in 2022.”
The luxurious Seven Seas Splendor is the newest in Regent Seven Seas’ fleet and carries no more than 750 guests, staying in sumptuous all-suite accommodation with plenty of space to spread out on board. “As well as the Regent Suite, we have a further 14 other suite categories, all beautifully designed and spacious including balconies which are amongst the largest at sea,” says Barron. “All fares include speciality dining, beverages including premium wines and spirits throughout the ship, valet laundry, WiFi, flights and transfers.”
According to Barron, “With all things included, the value offered on board is staggering – as the old cruise saying goes: ‘It’s not what you pay to get on a ship, it’s what you pay to get off!’”
John’s Christmas cruise selling tips
“I would suggest focusing on the value that comes with a luxurious Regent Christmas cruise. Make sure that the client knows that not only almost everything on board is included in the cruise fare, but they will also benefit from a very high crew to guest ratio as well as an abundance of space. It all adds up to incredible, personalised service.”
Seven Seas Splendour will sail from Miami to LA next Christmas on a 16-night itinerary departing 20 December, priced from £8,759 all inclusive.
PICTURES: Regent Seven Seas Cruises; Stephen Beaudet