NEW YORK — A new luxury cruise ship debuting in 2016 will have one of the largest and most expensive suites ever offered at sea.
Regent Seven Seas will charge $5,000 a night, per person, for a luxury suite the size of a house — with 3,875 square feet of space (360 square meters) — onboard its new Regent Seven Seas Explorer ship.
The Regent Suite will include a grand piano, two bedrooms, views from three sides of the ship, and a personal spa retreat with a private sauna, steam room and treatment area. It's designed for a minimum of two people, maximum four.
Carolyn Spencer Brown, editor in chief of CruiseCritic.com, predicts Regent will have no trouble selling the high-priced suite. On any ship, she said, "the top-priced suite and the cheapest cabins are always the first to go."
The Explorer is expected to launch in July 2016. The ship will spend its first season in Europe, and the first of its 11 sailings will be from Monte Carlo to Venice.
The ship will carry 750 guests. It's Regent's first new ship since 2003, though the cruise line has just completed a $150 million refurbishment of its other three vessels.
All fares on the ship include dining, shore excursions and tips, but the price of the Regent Suite also includes unlimited spa treatments, laundry services, a private car with driver and guide for port calls, an onboard on-call butler and limousine transportation to and from the ship.
Spencer Brown said the new ship is part of a trend in which cruise lines "are replicating resort-like experiences" with ships that feel like "high-end luxury small resorts" where you barely feel like you're at sea.
She added that the Explorer "is large but not carrying that many passengers. Will you ever run into a queue at the bar or having trouble finding a seat in the lounge before dinner? No. What you're paying for is that you never have to wait."