If you are curious about what to expect on a luxury expedition cruise, you are not alone! This niche is still a mystery to many experienced travelers. Offering more exploration options than a typical cruise yet providing all the amenities and services you appreciate on a typical luxury cruise; it falls somewhere between the lines of a spirit awakening exploration and a relaxing getaway. Cruise Specialists staff was invited to spend the day on board the exquisite Seabourn Venture, the first ultra-luxury expedition ship to join the Seabourn fleet.
Seabourn leaves nothing to want, that is even true on an expedition cruise. The moment you arrive on board, you are greeted with champagne as you make your way into the Expedition Lounge from the gangway. Surrounded by warm tones and rich textures, a sense of calm filled the air as we toured various spaces on the ship. Off the lounge is an expansive Discovery Center with comfortable seating and a large stage. We peeked in to listen as a lecture given by World-Class Expedition Leaders was taking place. Throughout the ship, the elegant aesthetic and intriguing art provide a sense of discovery with floor-to-ceiling windows allowing phenomenal views in. From the serene spa to the elegant restaurant, no opportunity was missed to elevate each venue.
We also enjoyed a dining experience on board. I must emphasize experience – this was not just a meal. We enjoyed four courses, each as beautifully plated as the last. Seabourn’s signature caviar was out first, followed by savory dishes that complemented each other and our experience was completed with an artfully crafted dessert that was almost too beautiful to eat.
Suites fit for a King
There are 12 suite categories on Seabourn Venture and we were able to tour three of them. The Signature Suite offered a spacious living area, private wraparound veranda, separate sleeping area, walk-in closet, spacious bathroom with separate tub and shower, and fully stocked bar and refrigerator. The Penthouse Suite had all the same features with a slightly smaller veranda and felt a bit cozier. With a more traditional layout than the open concept that has become popular in recent years, the suite offered ample space to nestle with a novel while your traveling companion is busy in another part of the suite.
We were blown away by the Wintergarden Suite, a two-story spacious suite that is over 1,000 square feet. The views from the two-story windows are incredible. Imagine waking up to Polar bears playing on a glacier outside your window! This room also has a kitchenette and plenty of space for hosting a special event.
Did you know Seabourn will provide service for your event at no charge? Just let your Cruise Specialists Cruise Consultant know you plan to celebrate a special milestone in your suite and your friends and family will be served by Seabourn Suite Attendants.
Excursions to Discover the World
What really differentiates an Expedition from a typical cruise are the Excursions and Expedition Team. Rather than touring a museum or city, you have a team of 26 experts guiding you through fascinating places to witness what few people will ever encounter. On deck 3, we entered the Landing Zone where guests pull on their boots and outdoor wear provided by Seabourn to go on a zodiac, kayak or submersible excursion.
We walked right up to one of the onboard submersibles and talked with the Captains. On deck 9, we inspected the 24 zodiacs and discussed some recent excursions with the Expedition Team. Just days prior, they had enjoyed the Northern Lights and polar bear sightings on the Northwest Passage Voyage. The Expedition Team and Submersible Captains are extremely knowledgeable and have a passion for what they do. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Cruise Specialists’ team that visited Seabourn Venture including Gillian Clark, Gayle Takashima and Teresa Skeim.
Who Should Go on an Expedition?
Although an expedition may sound intimidating, anyone that is in generally good health and capable of negotiating uneven or slippery surfaces could participate. When entering a zodiac, there is a Seabourn Expedition Team member on either side of you to assist you. When entering a submersible, a team member is on either side of you as you step down a short ladder to enter. Of course, the zodiac and submersible excursions are optional. Guests will still be immersed in the beauty of Antarctica, the Arctic Circle and wild Kimberley even without these tours. Seabourn also includes Swarovski binoculars in every suite so guests can see the sites from the ship deck or while in port!
Overall, we were highly impressed by the ship, staff and experiences on board and recommend it to guests that are looking for a trip to discover more in a region than ever before.