– Avalon Myanmar – Myanmar River Cruise – April 2017
*Azamara Club Cruises – Azamara Journey – Singapore to Dubai (April 8, 2018)
* Azamara Quest – Southeast Asia and Japan (February 2015)
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Part I
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part II
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part III
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part IV
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Some Final Observations and Thoughts
– The Prologue to the Travelogue
– The Adventure Begins…With a Bump or Two
– Settling In Made Easy
– Luxury Touches Here, There and OK, Not, Everywhere…But There Are Lots of Them!
– Asian Flair Onboard and On Shore
– Private Tours, Israel and Conflicts in Perceptions and Perspective
Celebrity Equinox 2009 – Egypt…Impressive and Depressing
– Dining With the Captain and the Reidel Wine Seminar
– The Last Dinner (Tuscan Grille) and Disembarkation
– What Happens When A Class Act Meets Highly Discounted Cruise Fare
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part I
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part II
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part III
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part IV (Food & Wine!)
– Princess Cruises Doesn’t Treat You Like Royalty; Celebrity Cruises Does! Which is a Better Value for the Upscale Cruise Guest? Part I
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. -Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part II: The Standard Veranda Staterooms
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part III: Treating You Right From The Start
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part IV: The Wine Lists Speak Volumes (As Do The Beverage Packages)
Regent Seven Seas Voyager – August 2017
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part I
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part II (Getting There, The Stateroom and First Impressions)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part III (“You Can’t Teach Five Star Service” and Bonafacio, Corsica)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part IV (Calvi, Monaco, Portofino, Porto Azzurro…and Stale Bread)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part V (My Last Day…and How The Chef’s Team Makes It Happen)
I am aboard the Seabourn Sojourn and I am happy to report the ship is, well…Ship Shape!
The staff is smiling and on their game with friendly and familiar faces greeting us at the gangway after our short tender ride from the Four Seasons Canary Wharf – the staging area for the very quick boarding process.
The champagne is flowing, the stewardess arrived promptly with more champagne, canapés and a choice of Hermes, L’Occitane or Essence soaps. Our suite (No. 622) is perfectly completed…as is the rest of the ship.
No crew rushing around. No apologies. No making things work. No, the issues with the delivery of the Odyssey are pretty much non-existent. Even the little things, like the deck on my balcony is clean and the trim freshly painted. All the furniture is not only in place, it is all perfectly staged with towels, cushions, awnings, etc.
My stewardess was literally bragging that within four days of arriving in Genoa from the Seabourn Pride the crew area was complete and she was able to move onboard. That allowed her, and the rest of the staff, to get into their routines early and consistently. So they confidently present a polished product right from the start.
I guess I must ask myself, “Why am I even mentioning the problems with the delivery of the Seabourn Odyssey?” And I guess the answer is because the delivery of the Seabourn Sojourn shows, once again, why I am such a believer in Seabourn. Seabourn may not be perfect, but the people of Seabourn will do everything they can to make it so.
I have notice a few changes/improvements; most of which are quite subtle (such as the elimination of the large silver “walls” at the rear of the Grand Salon – what a difference!), but the Spa has really been improved in a few significant ways. I will discuss these in a later post – with specifics – but the focus has been on delivering a consistent product at the highest levels of quality.
I was going to delay in describing the Inaugural Events because I don’t want to ruin anything for those attending the charity event tonight or the Maiden Voyage events, but I have been told that other in the UK have published some of the details. Soooo, with the preface that it is pretty hard to get Iamboatman to tear up, there were quite a few watery eyes last night. It started with a wonderful cocktail party on deck in 75 degree weather which included beautiful flower arrangements everywhere…including the center of the pool….a huge martini ice bar (complete with Seabourn insignia) and wonderful passed tastes.
Twiggy was announced and made her grand entrance, followed by her brief and very classy speech including the requisite, “This is My Yacht” and a bottle of champagne ran on a line running from the forward mast to a plague christening the Seabourn Sojourn.
After a wonderful dinner – flawless service and with great cuisine (my halibut was perfect, but Bjoern is the chef!), it was back to the pool deck for the big event. A quartet of beautiful women played some incredible upbeat classical music that was mesmerizing. Then, with the strings in full crescendo…Fireworks. And the fireworks were seemingly times to the music. It was, without question, very emotional.
It was, without question, very Seabourn. A new, more energized and youthful Seabourn.
As I dine, drink and am entertained I will write more. But for now, if you are booked on the Sojourn you can rest easy (and with positive excitement). If you have been waiting to book because you were concerned about the shape of the ship on delivery…wait no more. I feel like I am on one of my flawless Seabourn cruises and that the Quest has been very, very successful.
Goldring Travel LLC
12177 Business Park Drive, Suite 6
Truckee, California 96161
US: (877) 2GO-LUXURY (877-246-5898)
UK: 020 8133 3450
AUS: (07) 3102 4685
Everywhere Else: +1 530-562-9232