LUXURY

There are big things happening in the luxury space, with lines in this category ordering more cruise ships and the vessels becoming increasingly luxurious. But it’s not just white-gloved butlers and spacious cabins. Lines are taking their ships to a whole new level, with suites becoming more extravagant and itineraries and excursions more bespoke.


Regent Seven Seas, which has made a name for itself in the luxury market, recently launched Seven Seas Splendor, a sister ship to Seven Seas Explorer. Onboard, there are eight dining venues, a lavish pool and the largest suite at sea – measuring 412 square metres and featuring a custom-made Steinway grand piano and an in-suite spa and full sauna. For added enticement, a cruise with Regent Seven Seas is all inclusive.


But it’s not just about the amenities. It’s about the experience. Luxury cruise lines are now expanding their fleets to provide their guests with luxurious experiences on expedition voyages.


Ponant is currently in the middle of building six Explorer-class expedition ships, four of which have already commenced sailing, with Le Lapérouse visiting Australia for the first time last year. The remaining two, Le Jacques Cartier and Le Bellot, are due later this year. All the ships in this class feature Blue Eye, an incredible underwater observation lounge – the first ever at sea – where guests can sip on martinis while scouring the sea for underwater life, including whales.

Meanwhile, Crystal Cruises has expanded their luxury offering into yachts, river ships and even private airplanes, to give guests an even more bespoke experience.


Cuisine is another part of the experience where luxury cruise lines set the bar high. Lines such as Seabourn and Oceania Cruises have partnered with Michelin starred chefs. Since 2016, Seabourn has been working with top American chef Thomas Keller, whose restaurants The French Laundry in California’s Napa Valley and Per Se in New York have earned him three Michelin stars. Chef Keller’s The Grill, which has been rolled out fleetwide, is a riff on the classic American steakhouse where diners can feat on the best quality steaks, seafoods, salads and desserts.


So what sets luxury cruising apart from the rest? Personalised service is paramount, with butlers on hand to unpack your bags or book your table at restaurants. A high crew-to-passenger ratio means staff are able to pander to guests’ every whim and fancy. There’s also the added bonus of all-inclusive cruises and itineraries, more spacious suites with balconies, art on the walls (Seven Seas Explorer has a real Picasso onboard), luxury bedding, marble bathrooms, walk-in wardrobes and minibars stocked with a selection of your favourite spirits, wines and snacks.


It’s all about making guests feel special – the more pampered passengers are made to feel, the more likely they are to cruise again.

LUXURY

There are big things happening in the luxury space, with lines in this category ordering more cruise ships, and the vessels becoming increasingly luxurious. But it’s not just white-gloved butlers and spacious cabins. Lines are taking their ships to a whole new level, with suites becoming more extravagant and itineraries and excursions more bespoke.


Regent Seven Seas, which has made a name for itself in the luxury market, recently launched Seven Seas Splendor, a sister ship to Seven Seas Explorer. Onboard, there are eight dining venues, a lavish pool and the largest suite at sea – measuring 412 square metres and featuring a custom-made Steinway grand piano and an in-suite spa and full sauna. For added enticement, a cruise with Regent Seven Seas is all inclusive.


But it’s not just about the amenities. It’s about the experience. Luxury cruise lines are now expanding their fleets to provide their guests with luxurious experiences on expedition voyages.


Ponant is currently in the middle of building six Explorer-class expedition ships, four of which have already commenced sailing, with Le Lapérouse visiting Australia for the first time last year. The remaining two, Le Jacques Cartier and Le Bellot, are due later this year. All the ships in this class feature Blue Eye, an incredible underwater observation lounge – the first ever at sea – where guests can sip on martinis while scouring the sea for underwater life, including whales.


Meanwhile, Crystal Cruises has expanded their luxury offering into yachts, river ships and even private airplanes, to give guests an even more bespoke experience.


Cuisine is another part of the experience where luxury cruise lines set the bar high. Lines such as Seabourn and Oceania Cruises have partnered with Michelin starred chefs. Since 2016, Seabourn has been working with top American chef Thomas Keller, whose restaurants The French Laundry in California’s Napa Valley and Per Se in New York have earned him three Michelin stars. Chef Keller’s The Grill, which has been rolled out fleetwide, is a riff on the classic American steakhouse where diners can feat on the best quality steaks, seafoods, salads and desserts.


So what sets luxury cruising apart from the rest? Personalised service is paramount, with butlers on hand to unpack your bags or book your table at restaurants. A high crew-to-passenger ratio means staff are able to pander to guests’ every whim and fancy. There’s also the added bonus of all-inclusive cruises and itineraries, more spacious suites with balconies, art on the walls (Seven Seas Explorer has a real Picasso onboard), luxury bedding, marble bathrooms, walk-in wardrobes and minibars stocked with a selection of your favourite spirits, wines and snacks.


It’s all about making guests feel special – the more pampered passengers are made to feel, the more likely they are to cruise again.