Anyone who loves ships can appreciate the excitement of touring a new vessel under construction. Near Genoa, Italy is the T. Mariotti shipyard, where Radisson Seven Seas Cruises' newest ship, the 42,000-ton Seven Seas Voyager, is nearing completion. Carrying 700 passengers, the new luxury ship is scheduled to make her maiden voyage April 1, 2003.
Radisson Seven Seas Cruises president Mark Conroy gave a visual tour of the finished ship. Conroy, who has been in the passenger shipping business for 30 years has been the vision behind all of Radisson Seven Seas ships since Seven Seas Navigator was constructed. He explained that feedback from passengers will determine man design features in the next vessel. For example, the large demand for the Judith Jackson Spa aboard Mariner and Navigator has resulted in enlarging this space on Voyager. Negative comments about Mariner's small tubs and low ceilings caused him to rectify these features on Voyager.
Personally, I was most interested in Seven Seas Voyager's dining venues, and found this ship will deliver the same high levels of cuisine and service found on the line's other ships. Like Seven Seas Mariner, the new Voyager will boast four elegant restaurants, including the 110-seat Signatures, directed by the prestigious Le Cordon Blue of Paris. Other specialty restaurants include Latitudes, with an Asian influence; La Veranda, with Mediterranean fare; and Compass Rose, the main restaurant with international cuisine.
The best spas I have experienced on a ship were those run by Judith Jackson of Westport, Ct., aboard Radisson's Navigator and Mariner. Her spa on Seven Seas Voyager will be even bigger, large enough to handle the growing passenger demand for massages and other treatments.
Seven Seas Voyager's inaugural voyage next April will be a 13-day sailing from Monte Carlo to Venice. The ship is scheduled to cruise the western Mediterranean on seven-night itineraries through June 3 before moving to the Baltic for a series of Scandinavian sailings.
On Sept. 11, 2003, Voyager returns to the Mediterranean. For additional information, contact Radisson Seven Seas Cruises at 800-285-1835 or visit www.rssc.com.