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Travel writer Jo Kessel filmed the razzle dazzle aboard the Regal Princess, putting the ship’s ‘luxury’ bedding, mini-suite bathtub and giddying 16-deck-high glass walkway to the test. Her footage has the inside scoop on the ship’s entertainment and the best places to wine and dine on board. 

There’s an expectation of VIP treatment on a cruise ship with ‘Princess’ in its name – and I certainly got it on the Regal Princess. 

A video I shot of my mini-cruise from Southampton to Rotterdam on board the 3,500-passenger vessel starts by exploring the outdoor features, from multiple pools and hot tubs to an al fresco gym. 

Jo Kessel aboard the Regal Princess on a mini-cruise from Southampton to Rotterdam

Jo Kessel aboard the Regal Princess on a mini-cruise from Southampton to Rotterdam

There are umpteen ways to burn calories outside, including golf – although my swing would not have impressed Tiger Woods.

Moving on, I put some unique amenities to the test. 

First up: beds. Sleep’s key on holiday and American cruise line Princess has hired slumber experts to design the bespoke ‘Luxury Beds’ – available to purchase in the US if you fancy burning $1,700 (£1,250) on a mattress and $100 (£75) per pillow! 

Jo starts her trip by exploring the 3,500-passenger ship’s outdoor amenities, such as the hot tubs (pictured)

Jo starts her trip by exploring the 3,500-passenger ship’s outdoor amenities, such as the hot tubs (pictured)

The adults-only swimming area. Jo says that there are 'multiple pools' on board

The adults-only swimming area. Jo says that there are ‘multiple pools’ on board 

Jo takes to the ship's walking and jogging track. 'There are umpteen ways to burn calories outside,' she says

Jo takes to the ship’s walking and jogging track. ‘There are umpteen ways to burn calories outside,’ she says 

Jo enjoys a workout at the Regal Princess cruise ship's 'al fresco gym'

Jo enjoys a workout at the Regal Princess cruise ship’s ‘al fresco gym’ 

‘My swing would not have impressed Tiger Woods,’ Jo says, after her stint on the putting green

What did this travel writer make of hers? The mattress felt good, pillows and sheets too. Watch on for the verdict.

Mine’s normally a balcony stateroom, but this voyage saw me upgraded to a mini-suite. 

The footage highlights the perks of this accommodation, which includes extra space and two different types of bubbles. 

'The mattress felt good, pillows and sheets too,' Jo says of her bed. American cruise line Princess hired slumber experts to design the bespoke ‘Luxury Beds’, she reveals

‘The mattress felt good, pillows and sheets too,’ Jo says of her bed. American cruise line Princess hired slumber experts to design the bespoke ‘Luxury Beds’, she reveals

Jo usually opts for a balcony stateroom, but this voyage sees her upgraded to a mini-suite (pictured)

Jo usually opts for a balcony stateroom, but this voyage sees her upgraded to a mini-suite (pictured) 

'A mini-suite’s bathroom boasts a full-sized tub - a rarity on a cruise ship,' Jo writes

‘A mini-suite’s bathroom boasts a full-sized tub – a rarity on a cruise ship,’ Jo writes 

One’s a welcome bottle of champers; the other’s the soaking-in variety. A mini-suite’s bathroom boasts a full-sized tub – a rarity on a cruise ship. 

Cue lots of lazing in a bath filled with frothy foam.

Gone are room keys that resemble credit cards.

The main deck on the ship features a stage between two pools. In the evening it transforms into a fountain that stars in nightly sound and light shows

The main deck on the ship features a stage between two pools. In the evening it transforms into a fountain that stars in nightly sound and light shows

Jo brandishes her 'Medallion' - a touchless technology system that has multiple functions

Jo brandishes her ‘Medallion’ – a touchless technology system that has multiple functions 

Jo sips on a colourful cocktail beside the ship's main pool and cinema area

Jo sips on a colourful cocktail beside the ship’s main pool and cinema area 

REGAL PRINCESS BY THE NUMBERS

Regal Princess, built at the Fincantieri shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy, made her debut in 2014. She measures 217ft (66m) high, 1,083ft (330m) long and weighs 142,229 gross tonnes.

Guests can explore 19 decks, and the ship boasts more than 1,400 balconies. The ship can accommodate 3,560 guests and there are 1,346 international crew members onboard.

Instead Regal Princess pioneered the ‘Medallion’ – a touchless technology now rolled out fleet-wide. 

This is a 10p-sized disc worn as the pendant on a necklace or wristband and that performs multiple functions (all shown in the film) like opening cabin doors, paying for purchases and clocking on and off the ship. 

It’s the perfect, hands-free pandemic accessory.

Next up are a couple more exclusive-to-Princess offerings. 

The stage sandwiched between the top deck’s swimming pools transforms into a fountain that stars in nightly sound and light shows. 

Then there’s the ‘Sea Walk’ – a 16-deck-high glass walkway that cantilevers over the edge of the ship. 

Walking its length (seeing the sea beneath your feet) is giddying stuff. 

Fear sees many a passenger retreat after a couple of steps. 

The ‘Sea Walk’, pictured, is a 16-deck-high glass walkway that cantilevers over the edge of the ship

According to Jo, food is of a high standard throughout the Regal Princess

Don’t worry. The film shows there’s plenty of conventional entertainment too, from live music venues to a theatre that stages West End-style musicals to the spa.

Finally we see Regal’s cuisine.  

While food is of a high standard throughout the ship, my favourite dishes are Italian speciality restaurant Sabatini’s mushroom risotto and Crown Grill steakhouse’s filet mignon.

Jo relaxes in the ship's Lotus Spa. 'There’s an expectation of VIP treatment on a cruise ship with "Princess" in its name,' she says

Jo relaxes in the ship’s Lotus Spa. ‘There’s an expectation of VIP treatment on a cruise ship with “Princess” in its name,’ she says 

'I felt like royalty from start to finish,' Jo says of her trip aboard the Regal Princess. She's pictured here in the three-tier atrium, which 'bustles with bars and glitters like a tiara'

‘I felt like royalty from start to finish,’ Jo says of her trip aboard the Regal Princess. She’s pictured here in the three-tier atrium, which ‘bustles with bars and glitters like a tiara’

The video ends in the dazzling, three-tier atrium, which bustles with bars and glitters like a tiara. 

Did Regal Princess live up to its name? Actually, yes! I felt like royalty from start to finish. 

For more videos from Jo, visit her YouTube channel – Go With Jo

Regal Princess docked at Fort Lauderdale. The ship sets off on Caribbean cruises from the US port from November to April

Regal Princess docked at Fort Lauderdale. The ship sets off on Caribbean cruises from the US port from November to April

TRAVEL FACTS

November to April, Regal Princess sails Caribbean cruises from Fort Lauderdale in the US, returning to Europe for spring/summer 2022

A seven-night Mediterranean cruise with stops in France and Italy on Regal Princess departing Barcelona on Saturday Mar 26, 2022 costs from £489pp (the ‘Princess Fare’) or £699pp Princess Plus (an all-inclusive option adding drinks, Wi-Fi and ‘crew appreciation’). 

For more information visit princess.com.