Travel insights from Jenna Buege, associate editor of The Compass

Lavish Seas: 5 of the Most Luxurious Cruise Ships

Fresh food, fabulous accommodations and world-class entertainment, cruise liners have found plenty of ways to help travelers experience a taste of luxury while sailing the seven seas. See why these five cruise liners stand out above the rest when it comes to lavish experiences on the water.

  1. Regent Seven Seas Explorer

    Dubbed the “most luxurious ship ever built,” everyone is treated like royalty aboard the Regent Seven Seas Explorer. Expertly decorated from deck to hull, the Seven Seas Explorer is tricked out with granite and marble plus nearly 500 Czech crystal chandeliers. Artsy folk can browse the 2,500 pieces of fine art and specially commissioned paintings among the ship including works from Eduardo Arranz-Bravo and Picasso. A favorite among food lovers, this ship’s two main restaurants, Compass Rose and La Veranda/Setta Mari, offer fabulous buffet and a la carte options. Those looking to satisfy a specific craving can head to one of the Seven Seas Explorer’s specialty restaurants: Chartreuse for French flair; Pacific Rim for Pan-Asian flavor; and Prime 7, Regent’s signature steak house.

  2. Crystal Serenity

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    What's your favorite dish at Silk Kitchen & Bar onboard Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity? #CrystalCruises

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    From astronauts and politicians to golf pros and guest speakers, Crystal Cruises’ Crystal Serenity is recognized by people from all walks of life as a top tier ship for luxury travel. One area where the Crystal Serenity especially excels is in entertainment. Live music in the lounge and shows on the deck, passengers aboard this vessel will enjoy jazzy hits, Broadway tunes and string quartets as they sip their afternoon tea or devour a fabulous dinner. After dark, travelers can party the night away with their best karaoke songs or partake in some dancing at the popular disco, Pulse. Not your idea of a good time? Crystal Serenity is also equipped with an on-site casino for those who like to test their luck.

  3. Seabourn Ovation

    The Seabourn Ovation is famous for its VIP-access-only outdoor lounge, The Retreat. Decked with high-end cabanas, couples can enjoy the lounge for $350 a day for full access to a ballin’ hot tub, flat-screen TVs, Evian misters, beverage-filled mini fridges and oodles of fresh fruit. And, as with every Seabourn ship, passengers on the Ovation are privy to Seabourn’s signature champagne and caviar experience. Type “Seabourn Champagne and Caviar in the Surf” into Google and you’ll be met with endless results of ship reviews and travel accounts documenting how this special ritual defines the cruise liners’ commitment to luxury. A tradition where ship workers set up shop in the ocean, river or even in the pool, Champagne and Caviar in the Surf allows passengers to consume as much caviar and champagne as their hearts desire any day and any hour.

  4. Silver Muse

    One look at Silversea Cruises’ Instagram and it’s abundantly clear that the Silver Muse is ready to take its guests to every amazing corner of the universe and beyond. A particular favorite ship among travelers is the line’s Silver Muse, the largest luxury cruise ship in Silversea’s fleet. The Silver Muse is applauded for its impeccable dining which includes eight small restaurants instead of the traditional a la carte dining hall. Six of the restaurants are complimentary; however, Kaiseki and La Dame by Relais & Chateaux do require a $60 surcharge per person. It’s also worth mentioning that each Silver Muse suite is extremely expansive and comes handy with a personal butler.

  5. Viking Star

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    Welcome to the Aquavit Terrace, where lunch is served with a side of unforgettable vistas. #MyVikingStory

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    Those looking for a more intimate luxury cruise experience may consider Viking Ocean Cruises’ Viking Star. Thoughtfully created by nautical architects and designers, the Viking Star can carry up to 930 guests at any given time and is popular for its fashionably designed lounges and shared spaces. Rooms come in a variety of sizes ranging from 270 square feet to 757 square feet; each suite is furnished with nifty details including USB ports, heated bathroom floors and anti-fog mirrors. Plus, all of Viking’s ships now include an Aquavit Terrace, an outside deck made for the most beautiful al fresco dining.

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