– Avalon Myanmar – Myanmar River Cruise – April 2017
*Azamara Club Cruises – Azamara Journey – Singapore to Dubai (April 8, 2018)
* Azamara Quest – Southeast Asia and Japan (February 2015)
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Part I
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part II
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part III
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part IV
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Some Final Observations and Thoughts
– The Prologue to the Travelogue
– The Adventure Begins…With a Bump or Two
– Settling In Made Easy
– Luxury Touches Here, There and OK, Not, Everywhere…But There Are Lots of Them!
– Asian Flair Onboard and On Shore
– Private Tours, Israel and Conflicts in Perceptions and Perspective
Celebrity Equinox 2009 – Egypt…Impressive and Depressing
– Dining With the Captain and the Reidel Wine Seminar
– The Last Dinner (Tuscan Grille) and Disembarkation
– What Happens When A Class Act Meets Highly Discounted Cruise Fare
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part I
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part II
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part III
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part IV (Food & Wine!)
– Princess Cruises Doesn’t Treat You Like Royalty; Celebrity Cruises Does! Which is a Better Value for the Upscale Cruise Guest? Part I
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. -Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part II: The Standard Veranda Staterooms
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part III: Treating You Right From The Start
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part IV: The Wine Lists Speak Volumes (As Do The Beverage Packages)
Regent Seven Seas Voyager – August 2017
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part I
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part II (Getting There, The Stateroom and First Impressions)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part III (“You Can’t Teach Five Star Service” and Bonafacio, Corsica)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part IV (Calvi, Monaco, Portofino, Porto Azzurro…and Stale Bread)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part V (My Last Day…and How The Chef’s Team Makes It Happen)
I was going to wait until I got all the information, but I figured “What the heck. Let’s start the discussion now.”
Seabourn decided a few months ago to end most of its complimentary Seabourn Experiences (http://goldringtravel.blogspot.com/2008/09/seabourn-is-discontinuing-complimentary.html) and, obviously, it was not met with great joy. While I know many of my clients did not attend most of them, there are others that loyally did and feel cheated. I was not in favor of their demise and offered my clients some compensation if they took an alternative tour.
Seabourn, as noted in its blog, is now emphasizing private tours…not paid for “get on the bus” tours, but truly luxury private tours. Seabourn has a staff of eight devoted to this. As noted recently on the Seabourn blog:
Helen Panagos, Seabourn’s VP of Shoreside Operations, came up with a plan to totally revamp the company’s destination services resources. “We learned a lot from talking with our guests about what they really wanted to do during their cruises,” says Helen. “Some of them are still interested in the more general interest types of tours that we have been offering. But more and more of them wanted truly unique, customized arrangements for themselves and the small group of people they travel with-maybe family or friends. So we designed a whole new department to provide the sort of attention and expertise that can create very special experiences that aren’t off-the-shelf sightseeing tours, but rather unique, personalized arrangements that make for a perfect, memorable day in a port.”
Now that may not be what people looking for the lowest price cruise wants to hear, but possibly considering the previously unexpected drop in base cruise fares, Seabourn may have decided to provide the best “onboard” cruise experience and leave the shore experiences (with a few notable exceptions) to each guest’s personal interests and budgets.
With a different approach, just before the holidays began, I received an email from Regent announcing it is going to be announcing certain specific 2009 cruises that will have complimentary tours included. I do not have any more information, but it may work for those disappointed with Seabourn’s decision. (On the other hand, I know that I and many others have, in the past, been very disappointed with some of Regent’s tours and its tour desk.). Until I know more I really can’t comment, so stay tuned.
My question to ponder is, for now, “Would you be willing to cancel your Seabourn cruise so that you can take advantage of complimentary tours on a Regent cruise.” If you answer Yes, then you can stop complaining about Seabourn eliminating its single Seabourn Experience on most cruises…for you have found your solution. If you answer No, then you believe the Seabourn cruise experience is what matters more to you.
When I have more information as to the cruises involved and the tours being offered by Regent I will let you know.
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