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Silversea Expeditions increases its luxury offerings, including bespoke Antarctic experience


NEWS Since our last visit on board the Silver Whisper, Silversea has increased its luxury offerings, including a Couture Collection for the truly adventurous. Jack Yan goes on board one of this magazine’s favourites
Filed by Jack Yan/March 4, 2018/23.53



Silversea

We returned on board the Silver Whisper as she visited Wellington last month, to find that Silversea had made things even more tempting for travellers joining them for the next cruise seasons.
   For starters, we were told about Silversea’s Venetian Society loyalty programme, with some excellent offers. As Silversea travellers often return for future voyages, joining is a no-brainer: after 100 days, one receives a five per cent saving on future sailings; at 500 days, there’s a complimentary 14-day voyage (and there are stages in between). Beyond that, there’s a complimentary seven-day voyage for each 150 days sailed, and there is a special annual Venetian Society Voyage for loyal members.
   Since our last visit, Silversea had announced its Couture Collection of ‘bespoke global experiences’ for the truly adventurous, featuring pre- and post-cruise land-based programmes, including a private helicopter service in Mongolia, vintage rail in India, and Gulfstream jets in and out of Antarctica, with prices averaging US$34,000 per guest for each five- to eleven-day adventure, and the 11-day Antarctic "glamping" itinerary starting at US$78,000 per guest. The programmes are listed online here.
   Silversea is also the first line to get to all seven continents, including Antarctica, and we were reminded that 90 per cent of the suites on board the Silver Whisper had verandas.
   The fleet comprises nine vessels, with four Expedition ships that head to remote locations and smaller islands, and five Classic for the main voyages. The Silver Moon will be added to the fleet in 2020.
   We didn’t get a chance to check out a suite this time round as the Silver Whisper was fully booked, with 320 guests on board at the time of our visit. In some cases, Silversea boasts that it can have more crew than guests.
   Little facts we gleaned this time round is that the menus at the pool bar do not repeat for three weeks, so you’d need to be there a while to find the food even remotely repetitive, and we got to check out the running track above the pool deck for those who’d prefer exercising outside of the Silver Whisper’s wonderfully equipped gym.
   The Restaurant menu changes daily, and Lucire enjoyed, on this trip, guacamole with quail egg and mahi-mahi, among other delicious offerings.
   The observation lounge had been fully and tastefully redecorated since our last visit, making it an even more appealing space to be in.
   If that wasn’t enough, then Le Champagne, the only Relais & Châteaux restaurant on the sea, has a seven-course degustation and accommodates a maximum of 24 people (18 is the norm). There’s a surcharge of US$60 per head there, and the menu doesn’t change, but it is the most exclusive on board the ship.
   And if you really want to be spoiled, the Silver Whisper’s boutique has luxury products—our Silversea guide said the fanciest she had seen was a Chanel jewellery set priced at US$320,000.
   If you are travelling at the top end of cruises, and having these experiences, you won’t be bothered that internet access is free only for an hour a day (you are on the high seas, after all), with a surcharge beyond that. After all, would you really be online that much when you’re be treated to ultra-luxury cruising, with your own butler (one per suite) trained at the Guild of Professional English Butlers?
   Guests can book through their travel agent, and there’s more information at www.silversea.com. You can also read our earlier review here.—Jack Yan, Publisher


Silversea






Jack Yan

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