Simply The Best?

After sailing on SeaDream II, I’m better qualified to answer the question I posed at the outset of my cruise, and that was: How do SeaDream’s twin yachts, both more than 20 years old, outperform all others — at least to readers of Conde Nast Traveler.
There were aspects of my cruise that were not unique to SeaDream, and you could argue that other cruise lines do the job as good as or better than SeaDream.

Open-seating dining, the quality of the cuisine, and the fact that alcohol and gratuities are included mirrors what you’d expect on small luxury ships.

SeaDream’s ability to get into small ports, its wide expanse of deck space and its marina with all of the toys reminds me of a ship that sailed along beside us during much of the week: Windstar Cruises’ Wind Surf, a special ship in its own right.

But there are some areas where SeaDream stands apart. The company’s late nights in port combined with outdoor dinners appears to be unique.

And while at least one other cruise line offers opportunities to sleep under the stars, SeaDream makes a luxury experience out of it, even down to the custom-embroidered pajamas.

Seabourn Cruise Line offers something similar to the Crew Shoreside Casual, but SeaDream takes it one step further with the Captain’s hike. The pun was not intended, by the way.

Nearly all cruise lines claim excellent staff and cuisine — they better; their reputations depend on it — but SeaDream II really did shine in these areas. The crew exhibited a friendliness and enthusiasm that went beyond what their jobs required. They had a sort of spirit.

Moreover, wtith 94 crew members, the 110-passenger SeaDream II boasts a nearly one-to-one staff-to-guest ratio.

Should SeaDream should be the only cruise company in Conde Nast Traveler’s top 100 travel experiences? My feeling is that several other cruise companies qualify for the list.

That’s not a knock on SeaDream, but rather a vote for cruising over other forms of vacation. After all, can you think of a hotel that can take you from one destination to another while you sleep? I can’t.

Nor is SeaDream perfect for everyone. Families traveling with kids are welcomed, but SeaDream is an adult-oriented experience. That said, families do charter the SeaDream vessels, and both yachts are chartered on a regular basis.

The important question, however, is this one: Will SeaDream make your list of top travel experiences? Only you can answer that.

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  • The cruise was VERY nice. My favorite aspect was sleeping on deck. But having the crew know your name by the second day, and the barman know what you drink by the second visit to the bar were also very nice.

    They ran out of buckwheat pancake batter one morning – and we were going to have to dash to make the shuttle to land, so we could not wait until the next batch was ready. Next morning, the pancakes were waiting for us when we appeared for breakfast. the Buckwheat banana pancakes were wonderful!

    The crew was more than cheerful. They appeared to be enjoying themselves. And the chef mentioned that he enjoyed working on this yacht much more than he enjoyed doing the same on land. THe fact that the crew likes this yacht says a lot about the cruise line and the quality of the experience.

  • I’ve been on at least a dozen cruises, but with rare exception, I never met anyone that became lasting friends. On the Seadream, with only 92 souls on the guest roster, there was hardly anyone I didn’t meet. And for some reason, they were all nice folks. And so was the crew, who became more like friends than servers. All of which leads to the unexplainable aura or spirit which I felt strongly during my week aboard. I can understand now why 35% of the guests had been on two or more cruises and why we will be back too.


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