In Fincantieri shipyard in Genoa, Italy, the keel was laid for what is touted to be the most luxurious cruise ship in history. The 750-passenger Regent ship will be an all-suite luxury vessel unlike anything that has come before.
The keel laying ceremony was the epitome of opulence. Master sommelier, Michela Cimatoribus popped the cork on a magnum bottle of Krug Grande Cuvée, which triggered a laser, which then cut the first piece of steel for the Seven Seas Explorer ship. During the ceremony, a Rolls Royce Phantom also delivered three symbolic coins to commemorate the commencement of construction. The coins were welded into the construction of the vessel. The archbishop of Genoa also blessed the metal.
The ship will offer passengers more space and privacy than any other ship before it. Additionally, its Regent Suite is billed to be the most opulent suite on board a cruise ship. At 3,875 square feet, its master bedroom features a wall of windows overlooking the ocean, and a private onsite spa. The room will reportedly cost passengers $65,000.
But perhaps the best news our maritime attorneys have heard about the ship thus far is the fact that it will employ cutting-edge environmental protection measures. Just the other day, we talked about how several major cruise lines are avoiding environmental safety protocols and polluting marine habitats and the air with harmful substances, chemicals, and wastewater.
Although the passengers aboard luxury cruise ships can expect the ultimate in pampering, with private transport to excursions as well as all-inclusive luxury meals, it is important for guests on these high-end cruises to be aware that luxury doesn’t necessarily mean low-risk. Luxury cruises are subject to the same dangers and hazards as traditional cruises.
Luxury travelers are not exempt from some of the risks that cruise passengers face, like illness and crime. MarketWatch analyzed CDC data from cruise ship inspections, in order to determine which cruise lines failed inspections. Most major carriers have not failed sanitation inspections within the last ten years. However, MarketWatch reports that Regent has failed CDC sanitation inspections in the past. The CDC inspects all parts of the ship for areas of concern. Among the areas that are inspected are medical logs tracking Norovirus illness and other gastrointestinal issues in travelers. Potable water systems also need to be properly disinfected. Pools and spas should also have proper filtration and cleaning procedures. And, of course, dining facilities should be properly sanitized, with proper dishwashers and food protection procedures in place.
Furthermore, Regent isn’t immune to cruise mishaps. In 2013, we reported about an incident in which a propulsion problem on board a Regent cruise forced captains to cancel the itinerary, resulting in passengers being flown to Athens. Passengers pay a premium to take a worry-free luxury vacation and anything but the best is less than acceptable.
Despite this, the new Regent ship looks incredible, featuring beautifully designed dining rooms and cafés. The hope is that with its environmentally-friendly state of the art equipment, it will be able to deliver the service and luxury it promises its customers, while also being a reliable mode of transport to the destinations on its itinerary, and above all, SAFE.