Thursday, December 27, 2012

2012 World’s Five Best Medium Cruise Ships

According to a poll conducted by Condé Nast Traveler, a premier travel magazine with vacation ideas, destination information and travel tips, the following are voted as the world’s 5 best medium cruise ships in random order.
Here is the list of the world’s five best medium cruise ships of 2012 according to the votes of Condé Nast Traveler travel magazine readers. Both Crystal Cruises and Regent Seven Seas occupy two slots each. Oceania occupies the remaining other.

Crystal Serenity of Crystal Cruises

Crystal Serenity underwent a general renovation in May 2011, with updated decor and new bedding as good as modern lightings and tufted headboards. This 535-cabin cruiser has Creative Learning Institutes that offer courses from language to keyboard lessons. These help the line high scores for traveler activities; plus their “Perfect Choice Dining” that provides passengers with flexible dining schedules in the main restaurant and the “You Care, We Care” program that Crystal subsidizes of their new shore excursions focusing on voluntourism. Aside from world cruises, Serenity can be found often in the Baltic early summers, in the Mediterranean in late falls and summers and in the Caribbean during winters. Itineraries are all-inclusive with prepaid gratuities and complimentary drinks.

Crystal Symphony of Crystal Cruises

Crystal Symphony of Crystal Cruises was the first of Crystal Cruises’ ships that underwent renovation, which was a multimillion-dollar one and was completed in 2009. It then gave the ship a modern feel. Symphony and Serenity have similar lineup of dining locations, including Silk Road which is helmed by restaurateur Piero Selvaggio’s Prego and celebrity chef Nobu Matsuhisa. Symphony spends summer 2012 in Europe. In fall foliage seasons, it is often found off the easter Canadian and New England coasts. Itineraries are all-inclusive with prepaid gratuities and complimentary beverages.

Regatta of Oceania Cruises

Oceania Cruises’ Regatta is the line’s very first ship which it launched in 1998 and renovated in 2011. For its line, it set the tone for a luxury cruise at competitive price. Regatta has 342 staterooms and four dining venues managed by Jacques Pépin. In 2009, it started a partnership with Canyon Ranch for its spa to offer more than standard therapeutic services and to also include reiki, Ayurveda and acupuncture. This 2012, Regatta shall initiate some firsts for its line, by sailing to Alaska in summer and eastern Canada and New England in the fall.

Seven Seas Mariner of Regent Seven Seas

Launched in 2001, Regent Seven Seas’ Mariner is the world’s first “all-suite, all-balcony” ship, and since then, has regularly been refurbished. All the three Regent ships underwent an “enhancement” in 2009 which included having Prime 7 modern steak house as an addition. On the same year, Regent Seven Seas collaborated with Canyon Ranch which takes care of its ships’ fitness and spa areas. All Regent packages include pre-cruise hotel accommodations as well as ground transfers to the cruiser. The Mariner usually sails the Mediterranean from April to November, makes crossings in the Atlantic in March and November then begins in the Caribbean and circumnavigates South America in winter and spring.

Seven Seas Voyager of Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Seven Seas Voyager is the highest-rated ship of its line Regent Seven Seas Cruises. Seven Seas maybe labeled as the second to its sister Mariner in “all-suite, all-balcony” ship as well as the second cruiser which restaurant is operated by Le Cordon Bleu, but it is the first in terms of staterooms size.  Voyager has the biggest “lead-in” suites in the cruise industry even with its smallest 356 square feet size. After its renovation in December 2008, the ship got new additions that include a spa that is Canyon Ranch-branded and the Prime 7 steak house. The Voyager is always cruising, from Indian Ocean to the Pacific. In summer, she can be found in Scandinavia or Mediterranean.

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