Luxury Cruises and Luxury Cruise Lines
Every cruise line offers a great experience to its passengers, but a true luxury cruise experience is head and shoulders above the rest of the cruise industry. These cruises appeal to the traveler who demands the finest quality available and luxury cruise ships offer services and amenities that rival the best resorts worldwide.
Luxury cruises are characterized by a refined onboard atmosphere, a wide variety of exotic destinations, spacious accommodations and the highest level of personalized service. In other words, the finest of everything. Luxury vessels have opulent public areas and offer fabulous art collections, gourmet cuisine, fine wine, fresh flowers and attention to detail. Although the style differs from conventional ships to yachts to sailing vessels, the common denominator is quality.
Is a Luxury Cruise Right for You?
If you are an experienced cruiser and you typically like to book a higher category suite on cruise lines like Royal Caribbean, Holland America or Princess; or enjoy deluxe travel or tours to Europe, the Mediterranean or Asia, then you may want to consider trying a luxury cruise. Even the lower category suites on a luxury ship will be comparable in size and amenities to the higher category suites you may have experienced on other ships. Considering the all-inclusive nature and personalized service, you may find that for the same investment, you may get more than anticipated.
Luxury Cruise Differences
Passenger expectations on luxury cruises can be very high. One way in which stellar service is accomplished is through a 2 to 1 staff to passenger ratio. For every two passengers on board, there is one highly trained crew member ready to provide friendly, prompt and unobtrusive service. Butlers are a common amenity in suite accommodations and concierge-style services are usually available to all guests. Staff is expected to remember not only your name, but an entire array of personal preferences. On a luxury cruise, you shouldn't have to ask for anything twice. There is also little regimentation and few rules. For example, dining is usually handled in an open seating manner, whereby guests enter the dining room when they please and sit wherever and with whomever they choose.
Among the luxury cruise lines you'll find a host of prestigious and extraordinary ships. Spacious and un-crowded, you may feel as though you're on your own private yacht as you'll sail with as few as 100 other passengers, while the larger luxury ships can hold as many as 900. This is significantly less than can be found on contemporary and premium ships, where 1,500 - 3,000 other passengers may be on board. Cabin accommodations are much larger than in the contemporary market, with the smallest rooms are usually twice as large as standard accommodations on other ships and most with private balconies.
Spacious Accommodations and Suites
One of the major differences in luxury cruising are the stateroom accommodations. Many luxury cruises are all-suite vessels, many with private balconies. In addition to more square footage, suites can have sleek and elegant interiors, large walk-in closets, marble bathrooms with twin sinks and bathtubs with Jacuzzis, and large sitting areas with coffee tables that convert to a dining table for intimate meals served course by course by room service. You may also find upgraded mattresses, high quality sheets and bedding with down duvets; frette bathrobes; in-room internet access; complimentary mini-bar; personalized stationery; and same day laundry and dry-cleaning. Some suites, depending on the category may also have Butler service.
The atmosphere aboard a luxury cruise ranges from ultra-casual to formal. But either way, passengers feel like invited guests and enjoy a cultured and refined social environment full of comfort, pampering and choice. Luxury cruises appeal to epicureans, connoisseurs and intellectuals. Other passengers are often wealthy, well-educated and well-traveled, all looking for relaxation, adventure and exploration. As a result, you find a variety of age groups, including young professionals and executives seeking a resort casual, private yacht experience and high adventure activities to seasoned travelers who enjoy the pampering formal atmosphere of some lines.
Destinations & Itineraries
Luxury cruise itineraries travel off the beaten path while in the lap of luxury. Lengthy itineraries from 14-30 nights visit the most exotic ports on earth, and rarely repeat themselves. Of course, luxury travelers wish to visit the Caribbean, Alaska and Europe where many other cruises go, but you shouldn't be surprised by sold-out sailings and The Orient, Africa, South America and the South Pacific. Luxury cruise lines even offer around-the-world cruises.
Luxury travelers spend a lot of money for their vacation, but value is one of the most important parts of the experience. Luxury cruises provide the most inclusive cruise prices and often include air travel, wine with dinner, gratuities, professionally facilitated on board enrichment programs, shore tours and pre- and post-cruise hotel packages. Prices for luxury cruises vary by cruise line, season and destination and can range anywhere from $400 to $1000 per person per day for a seven night voyage.
Luxury Cruise Lines
These cruise lines offer the ultimate in Luxury Cruising. From resort-casual to formal, each line caters to the most discerning guests.
A six-star culture of relaxation, pampering and intellectual enrichment appealing to the luxury traveler seeking both exploration and all the benefits of a large ship's facilities and amenities.
Paul Gauguin Cruises
Paul Gauguin Cruises operates the m/s Paul Gauguin, the renowned, award-winning, 5-star-plus, luxury cruise ship built specifically to sail the waters of Tahiti, French Polynesia and the South Pacific.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
One of the best values in the luxury cruise market with prestigious and extraordinary ships that appeal to epicureans and connoisseurs looking to travel off the beaten path in the lap of luxury.
Sea Dream Yacht Club
SeaDream Yacht Club is an innovative, new yachting company that has become the prototype of the all-inclusive, casual and intimate yachting experience that discerning travelers deserve.
The Yachts of Seabourn
Passengers feel like invited guests aboard an exclusive private yacht and indulge in the highest levels of luxury, personal service and attention to detail while cruising exotic ports of call.
Provides the only truly award-winning, ultra-luxurious all-inclusive cruise experience and an uncompromising commitment to service that makes every guest feel like royalty.