The gentle lapping of waves against a wind driven hull. A pod of dolphins playing in the curling bow wave. A salute to a propitious marriage, the wedding of a splendid cruise holiday with the romance of sailing aboard a true tall ship. It is the unique combination of sailing tradition and pampered relaxation that is the essence of Star Clippers. For within the setting of a magnificently evocative Tall ship is a world for those who seek an authentic sailing adventure without sacrificing creature comforts. Their graceful ships fly along the waves, just like the legendary clippers of a century and a half ago. And this is as much an adventure in highly evolved relaxation as it is in tradition. For though computers have not replaced the skilled hands of the crew in the art of raising sails, they do not expect their guests to become barefoot seamen. Relax and let the crew do the work. Now come aboard Star Clipper, Star Flyer or Royal clipper, the largest true fully rigged sailing ship in the world today. As thousands of square feet of sail unfurl above you, you will feel the elation of those mariners of long ago. Because this is Star Clippers and the adventure has only just begun.
When you rise, help yourself to a continental breakfast with Parisian croissants, toasted English muffins or sweet Danish pastries. Or savour a full breakfast with fresh tropical fruits and crisp bacon, grilled sausage, smoked salmon and omelettes cooked to order in the dining room. At lunch, a marvellous buffet of seafood, salads and grilled favourites awaits your pleasure. If the day includes a stop at one of the private islands they frequent, you might also be treated to a succulent outdoor barbecue on shore. When evening comes, the elegantly appointed dining room becomes the setting for the chef’s finest culinary presentations, designed to please the eye and the palate, complemented by a selection of equally fine wines. You will find their service to be friendly and gracious, befitting a tasteful restaurant. Of course, they would not presume to dictate your seating preferences. On all three ships, you are free to dine when and with whomever you wish – including with their officers, who join the guests in the dining room most nights. The dress code? No need for formal gowns and black tie, casual elegance is the order of the day and every single night.
Life on Board
Friends gather round the piano bar and join in singing a few favourites. And in the Tropical Bar, the bartender shakes a pitcherful of some delicious cooling concoction. Now, is there anything more relaxing than this? Clearly this is not a cruise ship in the ordinary sense. On Star Clippers, you will find that there are no rigid schedules. You are free to do as you wish with your days – and evenings. To entertain you at certain ports, they’ll bring local performers on board to give passengers an authentic taste of the local music and arts. So rather than enduring another Broadway revue, you can enjoy the conviviality of fellow shipmates while a live band plays tropical tunes from a real Paradise. The Captain and crew are superb improvisers of the kind of light-hearted fun you will only find on Star Clippers. The Captain’s daily briefing on deck is wonderfully informative, and a chance to hear some great story-telling as well. And there are other events and activities, such as out hilarious crab racing contests, that have evolved from Star Clippers’ sailing heritage. In fact, the passengers tell them that it’s the easy-going informality of Star Clippers that makes a cruise with them so enjoyable.
Like a fine resort, all the amenities are here; double bed or twin beds that can be converted to queen, marble lined bathroom, private safe, television with in-house video, direct dial telephone, hair dryer and comfortable furnishings. The decor is tastefully traditional. You will find the accoutrements of a luxurious classic yacht, where everything is ingeniously designed for comfort, ease and efficiency. Burnished brass fittings and mahogany brightwork recall their nautical heritage. Soft natural fabrics reflect the colours of the sun, sea and sky. Prints of famous clipper ships and sailing yachts grace the walls. Everything is immaculately maintained and your steward knows exactly when to appear. On Royal Clipper, 14 deluxe suites offer the ultimate in cruising comfort, with private verandah, whirlpool bath and 24-hour room service. All but six of her 98 cabins are outside, and for the ultimate indulgence, two 33 square metre owner’s suites may be combined to accommodate up to eight guests. All in all, your Star Clippers cabin or suite is a perfectly arranged abode for day dreams and nights of blissful rest and relaxation.