By Simon & Susan Veness
We are often asked about our favourite cruise line, or our “best ever” cruise, and it’s always a difficult one to answer objectively (especially after more than 100 voyages, from South Africa to Alaska!).
It’s always tempting to say that our preferred cruise is the next one, such is the ongoing lure of this style of holiday travel. No matter how many times we set sail, there is always another ship, another voyage, another destination or another itinerary that lures us back.
That means we have a whole bunch of “favourites,” lines we are always happy to cruise with, and, seeing as this is a new year, we thought we would start a new series looking at these companies, the ones that draw us back time and time again.
And, seeing as how one of our most anticipated new ships of the year is also from this line, we have decided to start with Silverseas Cruises. So, without any further ado, here are our top 10 reasons to cruise with Silversea:
Among the 25 ships due to make their debut in 2020, Silversea’s latest arrival will definitely be in our Top 5. Sister ship to 2017’s award-winning Silver Muse, the newcomer will take the Muse formula and tweak it to provide what could well be the ideal recipe for medium-sized, ultra-luxe cruising. Silversea found their sweet spot with the size and proportions of Silver Muse, and we think the Silver Moon will advance their cause still further.
Butlers on Board
Silversea’s old-fashioned, white-glove service ethic is highlighted by their dedicated team of butlers, who ensure the line’s personal approach is maintained in all aspects of your stateroom comfort. At face value, it might sound like an unnecessary layer of formality, but rest assured the Butler can play a key part in your ocean-going enjoyment, from making restaurant reservations to ensuring your in-suite fridge is stocked just right.
All Drinks Included
Having mentioned that invaluable in-room fridge, it is worth pointing out that Silversea includes just about all your needs for alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, with the exception of a few high-priced wines and spirits. That means you are never handed a bill for that pre-dinner G&T, the morning cappuccino or cocktails in the lounge. Fruit juices, soft drinks and bottled water are also included, making this a genuine hassle-free environment in beverage terms.
The Observation Lounge
Many cruise lines, in the rush to add the latest gadget or gimmick to their ships, have forgotten that one of the prime reasons to go to sea is actually to see the sea. We love that maritime connection, and can easily while away a few hours each day just happily gazing out to the horizon. To that end, ensuring your guests have a proper viewing spot is essential to that basic enjoyment. Tor’s Observation Lounge atop each Silversea ship is maritime perfection.
It’s easy for cruise lines to claim they have the Best This or the Latest That when it comes to their restaurant choice, but many of them make the mistake of confusing quantity with quality. After all, who needs 20 different outlets on a seven-day or even two-week sailing? Cut the choice back to just four or five, ensure they all stick to providing the finest cuisine, do away with any surcharges and you have the ideal recipe for dining delectation. That’s the Silversea recipe.
S.A.L.T. (Sea And Land Taste)
Having said you can have too much of a good thing in quantity terms, there is always room for a smart innovation or two, and Silversea’s new (in 2019) S.A.L.T. programme is a welcome initiative that adds distinctly to the overall quality on offer. It provides a range of immersive regional dining experiences, tied to each ship’s route. This will be enhanced aboard Silver Moon with the line’s first S.A.L.T. Kitchen restaurant, with an ever-changing menu and regionally-inspired wine list.
We all know the top-level accommodation on each ship is its Owner’s or Penthouse Suites. This is a simple function of providing an exclusive level of comfort for those who demand the best. But Silversea ensures that every passenger feels special by providing an indulgent level of all-suite accommodations throughout. There is the same elegant furniture, marble bathroom, lavish creature comforts and stylish amenities no matter which suite you choose.
Holiday companies of all shapes and varieties in recent years have cottoned on to the fact that one of the reasons we travel is to get a genuine experience of the places we visit. Silversea actually recognised this modern trend virtually from the get-go, ensuring their array of shore excursions include genuine personalised ‘tastes’ of the ports they sail to. Be sure to check out the Shore Concierge desk for unique ways to explore each destination.
Holistic Spa Experiences
For all the fact cruise lines have invested a lot of resources into their Spas in recent years, not many people head to sea expecting to get healthier. But, take the time to explore the onboard holistic approach that Silversea brings to its beautifully appointed Elemis-outfitted Spas and you will be sorely tempted to make this your new lifestyle choice!
The Silversea Difference
When Silversea introduced their 16,800-ton Silver Cloud in 1994, it carried just 290 passengers and 209 crew, with a space ratio of 56.7, then the most generous in ocean-going vessels. Making their ships bigger (Silver Moon) will carry twice as many as the original) while maintaining their gracious service style was thought to improbable, yet their newcomer will not only boast a space ratio of 68.4 but also improve on the original blueprint of pure, indulgent luxury. Good things can come in large packages.
Have you cruised with Silversea, and what are YOUR highlights from the voyage(s)? Give us your thoughts in the Comments section below.