Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)
Seven Seas Mariner
Ship: 431 out of 500
Accommodation: 177 out of 200
Food: 318 out of 400
Service: 310 out of 400
Entertainment: 82 out of 100
Cruise: 326 out of 400
Overall Score: 1644 out of 2000
Seven Seas Mariner Statistics
Size: Small Ship
Cruise Line: Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Former Names: none
IMO Number: 9210139
Builder: Chantiers de l’Atlantique (France)
Original Cost: $240 million
Entered Service: Mar 2001
Length (ft/m): 713.0/217.3
Beam (ft/m): 95.1/29.0
Draft (ft/m): 21.4/6.5
Propulsion/Propellers: diesel-electric (16,000kW)/2 azimuthing pods
Passenger Decks: 9
Total Crew: 445
Passengers (lower beds): 708
Passenger Space Ratio (lower beds): 67.9
Passenger/Crew Ratio (lower beds): 1.6
Cabins (total): 354
Size Range (sq ft/m): 301.3-2,002.0/28.0-186.0
Cabins (for one person): 0
Cabins (with private balcony): 354
Cabins (wheelchair accessible): 6
Wheelchair accessibility: Best
Cabin Current: 110 volts
Casino (gaming tables): Yes
Slot Machines: Yes
Swimming Pools: 1
Hot Tubs (on deck): 3
Self-Service Launderette: Yes
Dedicated Cinema/Seats: No
Onboard currency: US$
This is an all-inclusive premium ship for senior-age travelers
Overview. Seven Seas Mariner is best suited to well-traveled couples and single travelers, typically over 50, who seek excellent itineraries, fine food, and good service, with some entertainment, all wrapped up in a contemporary ship that is elegant. Its passenger/space ratio is among the highest in the cruise industry.
The Ship. This was the first ship in the fleet to get a pod propulsion system, replacing the traditional shaft and rudder. The ship was extensively refurbished in 2014.
There is a wide range of public rooms, almost all located under the accommodation decks. Three sets of stairways (forward, center, aft) mean it is easy to find your way around. An atrium lobby spans nine decks, with the lowest level opening directly onto the tender landing stage.
Facilities include a very comfortable, large observation lounge, a small casino, a shopping concourse with ‘open market’ area, a garden lounge/promenade arcade, a large library (incorporating several computer workstations) and adjacent room with 14 Internet-connect computers, coffee lounge, card player’s room, conference room, cigar-smoking lounge (Connoisseur Club), and a Park West art gallery (silent auctions are held).
Seven Seas Mariner loses a few points because dining service ranges from excellent to spotty and inconsistent.
Basic gratuities are included, as are all alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and table wines for lunch and dinner. Premium and connoisseur selections are available at extra cost, and Internet-connection charges are high. Shore excursions and pre- or post-cruise hotel stays are also included, depending on the itinerary.
Accommodation. There are several accommodation categories. Seven Seas Mariner was the cruise industry’s first all-suites, all-balconies ship - though that’s not technically correct as not all accommodation has sleeping areas completely separated from living areas.
Most grades have private, marble-clad bathrooms with tub or half-tub, and suite entrances are neatly recessed away from the passenger hallways to provide quietness (refreshingly there’s no music in the hallways, although there is in the elevators).
Master Suites. The largest accommodation (1,580 sq ft/147 sq m), in two Master Suites, has two separate bedrooms, living room with TV/DVD and CD player, walk-in closet, dining area, two large marble-clad bathrooms with tub and separate shower enclosure, and two private teakwood-decked balconies. Butler service is provided, as is an illy espresso machine.
Mariner Suites. Six Mariner Suites (739 sq ft/69 sq m), on the port and starboard sides of the atrium on three separate decks, have a separate bedroom, living room with large audio-visual center, walk-in closet, dining area, large, marble-clad bathroom with tub and separate shower enclosure, and a good-size private balcony. Butler service is provided, as is an illy espresso machine.
Grand Suites. Two Grand Suites (707 sq ft/66 sq m) are located one deck above the ship’s navigation bridge. The facilities are similar to those in Mariner Suites. Butler service is provided
Seven Seas Suites. Six spacious suites (697 sq ft/65 sq m) overlook the ship’s stern (two suites are located on each of four decks) and have very generous private balcony space and good wraparound views over the ship’s stern and to port or starboard. The balconies, however, are only semi-private and can be partly overlooked. Another two are located just aft of the ship’s navigation bridge. They are slightly smaller, at 600 sq ft (56 sq m), and have balconies. They have a separate bedroom, living room with audio-visual center, walk-in closet, dining area, and marble-clad bathroom with a combination tub/shower.
Horizon View Suites. The 12 Horizon Suites (627 sq ft/58 sq m) overlook the stern and have a very large balcony and good views. These suites have a separate bedroom, living room with TV/DVD, walk-in closet, dining area, and large marble-clad bathroom with a combination tub/shower. Butler service is provided.
Penthouse Suite. The 14 Penthouse Suites measure 449 sq ft (41.7 sq m) and have a bedroom that can be separated from the living area, and twin beds that convert to a queen-size bed. They are wide (highly desirable) rooms, located on the uppermost accommodation deck, and provide plenty of open space. The bathrooms are nicely appointed, and the balcony is quite large. Butler service is provided, as is an illy espresso machine.
Deluxe Suites. Concierge Suites and Deluxe Suites measure approximately 301 sq ft (28 sq m) and have twin beds that convert to a queen-size bed, small walk-in closet, marble-lined bathroom with combination tub/shower, vanity desk, hairdryer, TV/DVD, refrigerator (stocked with soft drinks and bar set-up on embarkation), and personal safe. In these suites, the sleeping area is separated from the living area only by partial room dividers, and therefore is a cabin, not a true suite.
Six wheelchair-accessible suites are located as close to an elevator as one could possibly get, and provide ample living space, together with a large roll-in shower and all bathroom fittings located at the correct height.
Dining. Four dining venues all operate on an open-seating basis, so you can dine when and with whomever you choose. Reservations are required in two of the four venues. In general, the cuisine is good to very good, with creative presentation and a wide variety of food choices (Kosher meals can be provided).
The main dining room, the 570-seat Compass Rose Restaurant, has a light, fresh decor, and seating at tables for two, four, six, or eight - although tables for six or eight predominate. With a one-and-a-half deck height, the restaurant has a nice open feeling, and there’s plenty of space around most tables for decent service to be provided.
Other dining options. The 80-seat Prime 7 Steakhouse is the smallest of the specialty dining venues. It features a range of superb USDA prime, dry-aged steaks as well as chops, oven-roasted half chicken, Alaskan king crab legs, and Maine lobster. It’s the most intimate dining spot - though, again, the single-deck ceiling height makes it feel busy - and it can get noisy (call it lively ambience). There is seating for two, four, or six, and reservations are required.
Signatures is a 120-seat ‘supper club’ with ocean views along the room’s port side. It is directed and staffed by chefs wearing the white toque and blue riband of Le Cordon Bleu, the prestigious culinary society, whose cuisine is classic French. Doors open onto a covered area outdoors, with small stage and dance floor. Seating is at tables of two, four, or six, and reservations are required. However, the single-deck ceiling height robs the room of the grandeur that suits fine classic French cuisine.
For more casual meals, La Veranda is a large self-serve indoor/outdoor café with seats for 450; the decor is fresh and light. This eatery has several food islands and substantial counter display space. At night, it is transformed into Sette Mari - an Italian eatery with some excellent pasta-based dishes.
The outdoor Pool Grill and ice cream bar, adjacent to the swimming pool, is a popular eatery. It features a creative list of burgers (a choice of 11, to be exact, including Black Angus beefburger, Philly beefburger, southwestern beefburger, pesto beefburger, Portobello and feta cheese burger, Asian salmon burger, tofu veggie burger, roasted garlic teriyaki mushroom turkeyburger - and others, as well as various sandwiches.
Entertainment. The Constellation Theater spans two decks and is delightful, with good sight lines from almost all seats. The proscenium stage also has a front thrust stage - useful for presenting more intimate cabaret acts, and an LED backdrop for dramatic show scenery images.
The Horizon Lounge, located aft, is a combination day lounge with bar, and the venue for afternoon tea and daily quizzes. A number of bands, small musical units, and solo pianists provide live music in lounges and bars.
There is also Stars nightclub, with its oval-shaped dance floor, and a stairway connecting it to the casino on the deck above.
Spa/Fitness. Health and fitness facilities include an extensive health spa with gymnasium and aerobics room, beauty parlor, and separate changing, sauna, and steam rooms for men and women.
Sports devotees can play in the paddle-tennis court, golf driving and practice cages.