I simply sailed on 1 of the world’s most luxurious expedition cruise ships. This is a 1st look

Seabourn Cruises’ new Seabourn Enterprise, the road’s first expedition vessel, is totally one of the vital aesthetically pleasing and opulent to enter the expedition sector. Carrying as much as 264 passengers, the ship includes a small atrium with a crystal sculpture and lovely skylight; comfortable lounges paying homage to upscale lodges, full with fake fireplaces; two submarines that take passengers on for-fee underwater excursions; and elegantly appointed lodging, all of that are suites with their very own bathtubs and garments dryers (excellent to be used within the Arctic and Antarctic).

Though it is lovely, the ship would not really feel like a personal yacht or, conversely, a rugged ice-breaking vessel, however a smaller, extra adventurous model of a typical Seabourn Cruises ship. That similarity will work effectively for the road as a result of lots of my fellow cruisers on a 14-night voyage round Greenland and Arctic Canada had been Seabourn stalwarts — loyalists who sail with the model time and again and benefit from the sense of familiarity it offers throughout its vessels.

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Like the road’s different ships, Seabourn Enterprise homes Seabourn Sq., a social hub with snacks, espresso and a visitor companies desk; The Restaurant, which serves as the principle eating room for breakfast, lunch and dinner; and The Colonnade, a buffet and table-service venue that converts to table-service-only Earth & Ocean for dinner, providing bistro-style delicacies that rotates all through every voyage.

Though the vessel excels in the best way of aesthetics and meals, there have been some minor service niggles within the eating room (lengthy waits between programs, incorrect objects delivered) that I am positive can be labored out quickly. The largest ache level, nonetheless, is that onboard actions are restricted; in areas the place the itinerary can change at a second’s discover attributable to climate or sea situations, there needs to be extra contingency plans in place.

Right here, I am going to additional break down what makes the ship really really feel like a luxurious expertise and what Seabourn remains to be studying about expedition cruising.

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What I liked

Elegant design


“Oh, it is inexperienced!” I caught myself saying as my Zodiac (inflatable boat) pulled away from the ship on the second day of the voyage. Once we embarked through Zodiac the day prior, the vessel was backlit by the solar, and I might have sworn it was darkish blue. As an alternative, Seabourn Enterprise’s hull is completed up in an earthy, darkish forest inexperienced, becoming for {hardware} that focuses closely on itineraries to distant locations replete with nature.

However do not let the intriguing colour selection idiot you; beneath the glitz is a specifically strengthened hull that may lower straight by first-year ice, permitting the ship to journey near the highest of the world.


The onboard vibe can also be one among earth tones, with greens, grays, browns, tans and taupes taking heart stage. Lounges are outfitted with plush couches and chairs, fake fireplaces and decor — like diving masks art work, sculptures designed to seem like coral and odes to explorers like Roald Amundsen — that evokes each nature and journey.


Cabins are particularly swanky, with vibrant bogs, all of which characteristic bathtubs (though not all passengers favored them and stated they’d relatively have a bigger bathe as an alternative). Stroll-in closets present ample storage, even for lengthy sailings, and each room comes with a small drying closet that is a welcome contact after wet days and moist landings (whenever you placed on waterproof boots offered by the ship and step off the Zodiac into the water whenever you attain the shore). It is small in-room touches like Swarovski binoculars and a pillow menu that additional embellish the ship’s already considerate design.

Luxurious touches


From over-the-top extras like submarine rides and limitless complimentary caviar and Champagne to smaller indulgences like bubble baths (faux rose petals and all, because of my room stewards who shocked me), it is the added parts that make Seabourn Enterprise stand out.


Caviar within the surf is one among Seabourn’s signature occasions throughout every cruise. When the local weather permits, members of the crew stand within the water, often in a beachy port, to serve passengers caviar and Champagne. On cold-weather itineraries, the occasion is introduced on the pool deck, with small tables set as much as accommodate the soiree. If that is not sufficient, passengers can name room service to order caviar and Champagne to their rooms any time of day, completely free.


Moreover, all cabins are supplied with Molton Brown toiletries (5 sorts of bathe gel, shampoo, conditioner and lotion on the most simple stage) and small touches like nightly treats (candies, cookies, nuts and different snacks). My room stewards had been additionally variety sufficient to ship a paper copy of The Herald, the ship’s every day schedule, to my cabin every day. (Seabourn now leans closely on its cell app to promote what’s taking place across the ship.)

Glorious meals


Though there have been some minor service points, the ship’s eating experiences had been constantly stellar throughout the board.

The meals was usually wonderful, however my favourite place to eat for dinner was Earth & Ocean, a sit-down restaurant that takes up residence in The Colonnade buffet every evening, presenting waiter-served delicacies that adjustments every day.


The venue provides a wide range of meals that is thoughtfully ready and scrumptious as well. For me, the 2 greatest had been the “Earth & Ocean” and Indian-themed nights. The previous served out-of-this-world bacon breadsticks; burrata with heirloom tomatoes, basil and toasted ciabatta bread; buttered hen curry; curried crisp naan; and royale bouillabaisse together with lobster, sole, and scallops. The latter’s menu consisted of mouthwatering dishes like naan with raita, mango chutney and chili butter; hen and vegetable samosas; shrimp curry; hen tikka masala; and curried greens with saffron pilaf rice.

Additionally value a shout-out is the gelato served for dessert in all venues. Nevertheless, you will discover the most important choice, made contemporary every day, at Seabourn Sq.. It is free, and you may snag flavors like cookies and cream, pistachio and hazelnut espresso in cups or cones.

Pleasant, well-traveled passengers


Seabourn passengers are a largely well-traveled group. Throughout my crusing, I used to be surrounded by docs, attorneys, authorities staff, finance specialists and others whose life experiences made for among the most clever conversations I’ve ever had on a cruise. (It additionally meant that onboard trivia classes had been a detailed race each single time, usually with ties for first place.)

I used to be a bit anxious that, given the voyage’s excessive value level — cabins began at $36,000 for 2 folks — I’d really feel misplaced among the many different passengers. Aside from a slight age hole that precipitated a number of of my fellow cruisers to mistake me for a crew member, I discovered there to be no scarcity of pleasant dialog and invites to seize drinks or play playing cards.

As a result of the ship is small and the crusing lasted two weeks, I bumped into the identical folks time and again and had extra time to get to know them — a welcome incidence as a result of I used to be touring on my own.

What wants work

Contingency plans


Because the expedition workers on Seabourn Enterprise says, sailings to locations just like the Arctic require “flexibility, flexibility, flexibility.” Passengers had been compelled to be versatile after poor situations compelled the workers to cancel many of the voyage’s scheduled submarine dives and kayaking excursions, each of which price additional. Different deliberate excursions, corresponding to hikes and helicopter sightseeing, had been additionally scrapped.

On the again half of the itinerary, the unique schedule included two port days, two sea days, one other port day and two extra sea days. All three port days had been aborted attributable to climate, leaving the 14-day itinerary with seven consecutive days at sea to complete out the voyage.

What shocked me greater than the adjustments and cancellations was the truth that the expedition and leisure groups did not appear to have a plan B. There have been no backup ports to go to, and solely very late within the crusing did I begin to hear of other onboard programming — lectures, bridge and submarine visits, wildlife viewing alternatives — being provided to assist cross the time that we might in any other case have spent taking Zodiac rides.


Though unpredictable climate is not anybody’s fault, I’m wondering if, maybe, the ship visited the area too late within the season, an remark made by a number of of my fellow cruisers and a few members of the expedition group. Modifications can occur on any cruise, however they’re flat-out anticipated on expedition cruises — one thing with which I feel Seabourn may wrestle to get throughout to its most loyal passengers forward of time, given that they are accustomed to ocean cruises with extra static plans.

I am positive the choices had been made with everybody’s security in thoughts, and that is a very good factor. However, as a aspect be aware, I do marvel if the best way Seabourn has chosen to deal with its expedition ships’ Zodiacs is a hindrance, notably when the climate is not excellent. As an alternative of together with a marina on the vessel — which many different expedition ships do — the road opted to retailer its Zodiacs on the highest deck. Cranes are wanted to decrease them down a number of decks into the water, which is a way more cumbersome course of than merely dropping them into the water from a marina on a decrease deck, and it is potential tough waves make the method much more troublesome.



One among my greatest targets for this crusing was to lastly see the northern lights. Sadly, I wasn’t profitable, however one among my fellow passengers was. He strolled into the ship’s Bow Lounge one evening whereas I used to be up late working and went out onto the remark space to search for them. He talked about that they had been out in full power for a number of hours within the wee hours of the morning earlier that day, however no announcement ever got here from the bridge.

Equally, though there have been some temporary stops made for whale, polar bear and musk ox viewings, I used to be informed by a couple of passengers that they noticed whales on a number of different events. There have been no bulletins made for these, both. After I requested among the expedition workers why, the solutions included “it wasn’t value it” and “it was too late at evening/early within the morning.”

One of many hallmark features of these kind of sailings is the flexibility for expedition ships to cease what they’re doing and divert from the deliberate itinerary to chase wildlife when acceptable. It did not appear there was sufficient of that on this journey (and it wasn’t for lack of alternatives).

Formal nights


Seabourn continues to carry sturdy with the custom of formal nights, which means that, along with Gore-Tex clothes, mountain climbing boots and base layers, passengers may even need to pack formal-night clothes into their baggage. Frankly, on an expedition cruise, the idea is ridiculous.

As you may see within the above picture from a cruise on a unique crusing, I usually like to costume up for formal nights on ships — even those which have relaxed their insurance policies lately. Nevertheless, there’s nothing I would relatively do much less after a day of cold-weather actions than don heels and taffeta and fuss over my hair and make-up.


In that vein, I heard a number of complaints from fellow vacationers about the truth that there is not any true informal eating possibility on the ship at evening. I used to be pissed off by it, too. If you happen to do not wish to costume up or sit down for a two-hour meal, the one selection is room service. Not even the buffet venue is informal for dinner. (There’s a small sushi menu obtainable in The Membership, one of many ship’s lounges, nevertheless it would not really feel fairly proper to be underdressed there, both.)

The crew is not tremendous strict in regards to the costume code, so I received away with black denims and a pleasant prime with a blazer, plus flats, on most nights. On others, although, I simply could not be bothered and ordered membership sandwiches or pasta to my cabin. (The eating group additionally permits passengers to order from the principle eating room menu for supply.)

Backside line


Seabourn remains to be getting its toes moist with regard to the world of expedition cruising, and I am betting there can be some adjustments on account of the teachings it has discovered from this inaugural season.

Finally, Seabourn Enterprise is a terrific first iteration for the road’s expedition debut. Seabourn does luxurious effectively. The ambiance, meals, service and little touches are all as they need to be, however some work is required to carry the product in step with what luxurious expedition ships from different traces are offering by way of the expedition expertise.

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