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First look: The new, $11,000-a-night cruise ship suite that's bigger than a house

Feb. 24, 2020
10 min read
First look: The new, $11,000-a-night cruise ship suite that's bigger than a house
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For the record, I'm the kind of guy who rarely spends over $10,000 a night for a cabin on a cruise ship. And by rarely, I mean never.

Shave a couple zeros off that number, and you're getting closer to my idea of a reasonable per-night charge.

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Apparently, not everyone is like me. The new Regent Suite on luxury line Regent Seven Seas Cruises' just-unveiled Seven Seas Splendor, which Regent executives showed off to U.S. media for the first time on Sunday, already is booked solid through November at $11,000 a night for two.

Yes, you read that right: $11,000 a night.

The living room in the Regent Suite on the new Seven Seas Splendor. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)

Given that many Seven Seas Splendor sailings run 10 to 16 nights, we're talking about a total spend here of $110,000 to $176,000 in many cases.

What do you get for that kind of money? For starters, a suite that is very, very big.

The dining area of the Regent Suite has a table for six. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)

The sprawling complex measures 4,443 square feet -- nearly twice the size of the average American home.

For those of you keeping track, that makes the suite more than three times the size of the much-ballyhooed, two-deck-high Ultimate Family Suite that Royal Caribbean recently put atop Symphony of the Seas, the world's biggest cruise ship. It's also way bigger than the giant Sky Suites that Princess Cruises just unveiled on its new Sky Princess.

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As I saw during Sunday's preview, the Regent Suite features two bedrooms, three bathrooms, a living room, a separate dining area and what is perhaps the most spectacular balcony at sea.

"It's unique," Regent president and CEO Jason Montague said of the suite when I asked him where he thinks it falls among the list of top suites at sea. "There's nothing like it, not just in the cruise industry but the overall [travel] industry."

Related: The best credit cards for booking cruises

That's a big boast. But, having seen quite a few super-suites in my 20-plus years of travel writing, I can say that Montague may have a point.

As Montague noted, there aren't any super suites on land where you can get a sweeping view of a different iconic destination -- Monaco, Portofino, Venice -- every few days.

"Look at that view behind you," Montague said, pointing to floor-to-ceiling windows framing a vast expanse of island-dotted water (the suite unveiling was taking place during a short sneak-peek sailing for travel agents from Miami to the Bahamas). "You're going to wake up [to a view of] a different port almost every day."

The Regent Suite on Seven Seas Splendor has more than 1,000 square feet of balcony space. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)
The Regent Suite on Seven Seas Splendor has more than 1,000 square feet of balcony space with a private whirlpool and lounge chairs facing the ocean. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)

Located at the very top of the ship, the Regent Suite really does have one of the best views at sea. Even the captain of the vessel, three decks below on the bridge, doesn't get quite the line of sight that a Regent Suite guest can get through its seemingly endless glass walls.

The bridge also doesn't have such luxury touches as a Steinway grand piano, designer furniture and an art collection worth thousands of dollars.

Cruise suite connoisseurs will tell you the footprint of the Regent Suite is similar to the footprint of a suite of the same name on Regent's 3-year-old Seven Seas Explorer. Until now, that suite has widely been considered the be-all and end-all of suites at sea. But some of the new Regent Suite's features are even more extravagant.

Among the craziest things that I saw: A bed with a handmade mattress that Regent executives claim cost more than $200,000. I didn't see the receipt, so I can't confirm it really was that pricey. But, given the way they described its making, I'm taking their word for it.

The hand-made mattress in the Regent Suite on Seven Seas Splendor cost more than $250,000. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Splendor)
The hand-made mattress in the Regent Suite on Seven Seas Splendor cost more than $200,000. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Splendor)

Regent says the bed was handcrafted by four artisans at the renowned Hästens workshop in Köping, Sweden. It's made with horsetail hair, layered in with flax, and cotton and wool batting. The frame, I was told, was made of pinewood. That last part seems a little Plebeian to me, given the cost of the bed. No rare black walnut or 1,000-year-old redwood?

Pine frame or not, the bed is quite comfortable. I know this because, when nobody else was looking, I sneaked a dive right on top of it.

Before you chastise me, know that I did fluff the comforter back up and straightened out the top sheet.

There's only one way to test how comfortable the most expensive mattress at sea actually is, right? (Photo by Gene Sloan/The Points Guy)

The super-pricey bed is within the Regent Suite's master bedroom area, which is the centerpiece of the complex. In addition to a main bedroom and adjacent lounge space, there's a massive master bathroom that doubles as a personal spa, complete with its own sauna and steam room. It's big enough that it also can be used as a personal spa treatment room.

To that end, the Regent Suite -- get this -- comes with its very own spa therapist on call. Unlimited spa treatments are included in the cost of the suite.

The master bathroom in the Regent Suite is bigger than many standard cruise ship cabins. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)
The master bathroom in the Regent Suite is bigger than many standard cruise ship cabins. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)

Need we even mention that the suite comes with its own private butler?

The master bath also has a walk-in shower so big that we suspect a couple of the other writers at Sunday's event got lost inside and are still there. Notably, the shower has a floor-to-ceiling glass wall overlooking the ocean. You can also enjoy the view from two heated relaxation loungers.

Two heated loungers are among the spa features in the master bathroom of the Regent Suite. (Photo by Gene Sloan/The Points Guy)
Two heated loungers are among the spa features in the master bathroom of the Regent Suite. (Photo by Gene Sloan/The Points Guy)

Still, the best view of the ocean from the Regent Suite is from its forward-facing, glass-enclosed solarium (which comes with a fully stocked bar).

That is, unless you walk out on the adjacent wraparound balcony. You can watch the sunset on the balcony from a custom Treesse minipool spa. Just don’t forget to grab an always-on-hand, complimentary bottle of Veuve Clicquot first.

The Winter Garden in the Regent Suite has floor-to-ceiling windows with views over the ship's bow. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)
The solarium in the Regent Suite has floor-to-ceiling windows with views over the ship's bow. (Photo courtesy of Regent Seven Seas Cruises)

If, like me, you're still a little blown away by the fact that anyone is shelling out $11,000 a night for a room on a cruise ship, one other thing to remember is the Regent Suite comes with a lot of extras.

Related: How to plan a cruise with points and miles

In addition to unlimited spa treatments, perks of staying in the complex that come at no extra cost (well, after the initial five- or six-digit payment for the sailing) include first-class domestic flights to reach the ship. Those staying in the suite also get a personal car, driver and guide in every port. They have a concierge on call before they sail to help them plan their trip and, of course, the dedicated butler to help make arrangements once they're onboard.

The butler isn't just any butler, mind you, but the head butler for the entire vessel.

Built at a shipyard in Ancona, Italy, Seven Seas Splendor was christened on Friday in Miami by American model and actress Christie Brinkley. It will sail from Miami with paying passengers for the first time on Tuesday, Feb. 25.

Seven Seas Splendor will spend the next couple months sailing out of Miami, San Diego and New York City before moving to Europe for the spring, summer and fall. European itineraries will include voyages to the French Riviera, Greek Islands, Iberian Peninsula and United Kingdom.

Planning a cruise for 2020? Find everything you need to know here:

Featured image by STEPHEN BEAUDET

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    The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.

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  • Annual Fee

    $695
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Good, Excellent

Why We Chose It

It's hard to find a card that competes with the mile-long list of benefits that come with the Amex Business Platinum. While it's certainly not the card for the average consumer, a business owner with tons of expenses -- especially related to travel -- will find this card incredibly valuable. This card is similar to the consumer version that Amex offers, but with more business-oriented perks around statement credits and earning rates that are a better fit for business owners.

Pros

  • An up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee every four to five years
  • Up to $400 annual credit for eligible U.S. Dell purchases (enrollment required)
  • Gold status at Marriott and Hilton hotels (enrollment required)
  • Access to the Fine Hotels & Resorts program and Hotel Collection
  • Extended warranty protection
  • International Airline Program and Cruise Privileges Program

Cons

  • Steep annual fee
  • Difficulty meeting $15,000 welcome offer for smaller businesses
  • Limited high-bonus categories outside of travel
  • The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, and 1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases.
  • Earn 1.5X points (that’s an extra half point per dollar) on eligible purchases at US construction material & hardware suppliers, electronic goods retailers and software & cloud system providers, and shipping providers, as well as on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else, on up to $2 million of these purchases per calendar year.
  • Unlock over $1,000 in annual statement credits on a curation of business purchases, including select purchases made with Dell Technologies, Indeed, Adobe, and U.S. wireless service providers.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year for checked baggage fees, lounge day passes, and more at one selected airline.
  • $189 CLEAR® Credit: Use your Card and get up to $189 back per year on your CLEAR® membership. CLEAR® is available at more than 50 U.S. airports and stadiums.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more lounge location options than any other credit card on the market as of 9/2021.
  • $695 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.