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Our cruise experts review the world’s best cruise lines

13th January 2021

Ever wondered what it’s like to experience the world’s most luxurious cruise ships? Well, our expert advisers have tried almost all of them and here, they share the reasons why they love these cruise lines.

 
 

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Regent Seven Seas Cruises

KATHY PAVLIDIS

Travel Associates Kew - Cruise Boutique

On the Regent Seven Seas Splendor, I sailed from Rome to Barcelona and while it was a short itinerary by some standards, I was extremely impressed by the most spacious suites at sea, and the all inclusive nature of Regent. There's literally nothing left to spend including shore excursions and the amazing staff really do take care of your every need. The cuisine was another absolute highlight of this cruise line and the Compass Rose Dining Room is one of the best I have ever experienced at sea and I have certainly had my share of incredible dinners onboard incredible ships. Any clients that I have recommended Regent Seven Seas to have returned refreshed, rejuvenated and absolutely thrilled with their experience onboard.

 

 

JANETTE WALL

Travel Associates Balgowlah - Cruise Boutique

Where to start with Seabourn! I have done two cruises with Seabourn and loved every moment. The suites are so spacious and comfortable. My first was Athens to Monte Carlo on a food and wine cruise, where I got to have the unique experience of shopping with the Chefs trying local delicacies. It was incredible! The second was Vancouver to Seward where I got to experience the Seabourn Ventures program - getting off a Zodiac onto a Kayak over water to paddle up close to Hubbard Glacier was truly breathtaking. 

The service is impeccable service. On my second night I walked into the Observation bar for an after dinner drink - my Espresso martini was served without me having to ask (they remembered my order from the night before).

The food is not only delicious, but all of the food venues catered for my gluten free diet (which they knew before I boarded). I got to enjoy a variety of dishes that I would not normally be able to eat. I must say - the crab cake at the Grill was an absolute winner.

 

 

LUCY BELLAMY

Bellamy & Turner Travel Associates

I cruised on the stunning Viking Orion from Venice to Rome. Visually, she’s one of the prettiest ships afloat. Small, yet spacious, she caters to 930 lucky passengers.  As you embark, you immediately notice a sense of space, and the decor and styling is so en pointe. Obviously Scandinavian styling and very calming and relaxing colour palettes make this ship really beautiful. Everywhere onboard you'll find cosy nooks where you can curl up with a blanket and read a book or catch up on emails. The added benefit of Viking's no children policy means the atmosphere is very calm and relaxed! 

Our cabin, a Penthouse Veranda, was gorgeous! I travelled with my best friend on a girls trip so we had exceptionally comfortable twin beds. Our sitting area was very spacious and we enjoyed breakfast in our suite and on the balcony throughout the voyage. Plenty of storage space meant my friend's shoes and luggage, once unpacked, didn’t create any clutter!  The little things make a difference, like the heated mirror in the bathroom that never fogged and ample space for our toiletries. We also loved the large shower with a ledge for everything. 

Up on deck, our favourite place was the Infinity Pool. Every time we left port, we claimed the edge of the pool as ours and sipped champagne while we bid farewell.  Below deck, I can say the spa is the best at sea. Without question. We did spend an inordinate amount of time in the spa and I have no regrets. Honestly the best massages I have ever had in my life. The pool area in the spa is stunning and we also loved the snow grotto. What a unique facility to have on a ship!

From a culinary perspective we were utterly spoiled and indulged. From Manfredi’s Italian to the main dining room with its stunning tableware and impeccable service, to the best burgers at sea by the pool, you will not go hungry on board. Make sure you dine at the Chef's Table while on board too. That was an experience to remember!

Looking back over my week on board, I had an overwhelming sense of being happy, pampered and relaxed. The crew were exceptional and we felt genuinely cared for. Even when we disembarked in Rome, feeling very sad, the staff were there with a bottle of water for us as a parting gesture for our onward journey.

 

 

BECKY KENT-PERCHALLA

Perchalla & Turner Travel Associates

Those who know me know that I love to cruise! For the foodies out there, I would highly recommend Oceania Cruises. On my journey on board Oceania Insignia from Darwin to Cairns, the quality of the produce on board was second to none and consistently delicious. I would suggest that the Wagyu burger (with truffle) would be in the top 3 burgers at sea - tender, juicy and delicious. Accommodations on board, while on the smaller side, have the most incredible amount of storage and are so cozy - perfect for quiet days at sea. Whatever your taste may be, the speciality restaurants have some of the best cuisine at sea - from the succulent 1kg porterhouse to the delicate truffle and asparagus risotto in Toscana, there is truly something for everyone - all included in your cruise fare.

 

 

CATHERINE BAKER

Press & James Travel Associates

My Silversea experience onboard Silver Discoverer took me from Honiara, Solomon Islands to Port Vila, Vanuatu. This exceptional 10 night expedition cruise took us to many islands which are normally considered off the beaten path. We were the only ship that was able to visit so many places and it was such an amazing experience to go ashore in the zodiacs and receive a traditional welcome from the Islanders in their traditional costumes, with local instruments and songs.  Every experience was a very different one and unique to each of the islands we visited.  

The wonderful crew on board included specialists such as archeologists, an entomologist, marine biologists, and a traditional navigator who told us about crossing the pacific in traditional outrigger canoes using only stars, swell and birds for navigation.  We walked away so many exceptional insights into the history of the Islands and the places we travelled to - there's no doubt this significantly enhanced our enjoyment of our trip. We were lucky enough to enjoy amazing snorkelling (diving was an option too) to remote and untouched locations and with fish, manta rays, sharks and coral just a breath away at every turn.

The food on board was nothing short of top notch and the wines which were included were wonderful. We even had a butler for our cabin which cemented our feeling of absolute pampered luxury and we left the ship richer in knowledge and absolutely fulfilled. 

 

 

JENNI DAVIS

Davis & James Travel Associates

This was the experience that started my love affair with small ship cruising. My Stockholm to Copenhagen itinerary with Ponant on Le Boreal, which included Helsinki, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Riga, was a perfect combination that really highlighted the positives of this style of cruising.  In Stockholm, our ship departed from its dock right in Gamla Stan; in St Petersburg we were docked for two nights right in front of the Hermitage and this kind of incredible positioning right in the heart of the city continued in Tallinn where we walked straight off the ship and into the Old Town. There is simply no way to better the incredible accessibility and convenience of a small ship for their ability to visit even the smaller ports of the world. I absolutely loved it. 

 

 

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Uniworld Boutique River Cruises
Uniworld Boutique River Cruises

BECKY KENT-PERCHALLA

Perchalla & Turner Travel Associates

What always strikes and impresses me about a Uniworld experience is that the ship's decor is true to the location. I honestly felt like I was in the heart of Europe on my Christmas Markets along the Rhine journey from Basel to Cologne on board S.S Antoinette. From the range of artworks, the ornate decorations, to the light-catching light fittings and sumptuous couches, there was never any doubt that we were in the lap of luxury in Europe. I also rate the Uniworld beds as the most comfortable on the river. The quality of the linens and the mattress, plus the abundance of pillows, all made for a fabulous night's sleep after a day walking the picturesque laneways of Koblenz and Heidelberg. You will not be disappointed on a Uniworld River Cruise.

 

 

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