August 9, 2023
SeaDream Yacht Club – a luxury cruiseline defined by its casual elegance
Having been fortunate enough to enjoy the opulence of several super-yachts in the past, when the invitation arrived to partake in SeaDream 2’s latest voyage through the Bahamas, I found myself wondering whether this really was yachting, not cruising!
After a restful overnight journey from London to Miami, courtesy of Captains-M&M Airport, Seaport & Car Service – an exquisite family-run establishment boasting a fleet of Town Cars, SUVs, Mercedes Benz Sprinter Vans, Mini Buses, and Motor Coaches – the anticipation grew as we embarked from the departure lounge in West Palm Beach. Among the 112 guests, the vessel’s full capacity, it was amazing to witness numerous couples exchanging warm greetings like old confidantes, which, as it turned out, they were! Engaging with our fellow passengers, predominantly American, we found that the majority had embarked on the SeaDream 1 or 2 journeys two to ten times before. These seasoned SeaDreamers were well-versed in the art of nautical exploration, having traversed many routes, and astonishingly, many had already reserved their future SeaDream trips until the conclusion of 2025.
Our Sanctum of Serenity
Stepping onto the vessel, we were ushered to our sumptuous Stateroom on the third deck, where we were introduced to the attendants overseeing our comfort during the trip. The quarters were exquisite, the double bed flanked by elegant bedside tables, while the bedroom alcove boasted a dressing table, mirror, and an abundance of power outlets. The sitting area featured a writing desk, coffee table, plush velvet sofa, large high-definition television, glass shelves adorned with crystalware, and a mini-fridge replenished daily with a selection of chilled beverages. The opulent shower room stood as a pinnacle of excellence, housing an invigorating, high-pressure shower and fabulous toiletries – the luxurious and ecologically responsible products from Norway’s Elm Organics.
The Maritime Maestros
How does the SeaDream team orchestrate such impeccable service? At every juncture aboard the vessel, our names were embraced with familiarity – “Good morning, Mr. and Mrs. Rose,” “Good evening, Mr. and Mrs. Rose,” “Wishing you a splendid day, Mr. and Mrs. Rose,” “Is there anything else we can assist you with, Mr. and Mrs. Rose?” This personalized approach was genuinely awe-inspiring. The team embodied an exuberant and affable demeanor, brimming with knowledge and an infectious zest for life. Their dedication to ensuring an exceptional experience knew no bounds.
The Enchanted Oasis
Overwhelmed by jet lag from our lengthy journey, we were thoughtfully booked for a facial in the exclusively Thai-certified spa at sea. The therapy rooms offered a haven of tranquility, where skilled therapists administered an hour of celestial repose intertwined with highly efficacious treatments. So enchanted were we by this experience that we subsequently indulged in a couple’s treatment, a lavish ritual encompassing a sublime full-body exfoliation, rejuvenating sauna and steam sessions, a refreshing shower, culminating in an exquisite full-body massage – a symphony of pampering spanning hours.
Preparations for our enchanting evenings also included visits to the onboard hairdresser, a professional who miraculously transformed my sea-tousled tresses into lustrous locks befitting the glamorous evenings that awaited.
Each dawn unfurled as a gastronomic delight, where breakfast became an occasion to connect with fellow travelers, unveiling their day’s plans – a leisurely stay aboard or embarking on one of the myriad captivating excursions. The al fresco breakfast enclave on the fifth floor buzzed with animated conversations weaving from table to table.
Breakfast emerged as a regal affair, encompassing both buffet-style offerings and personalized table service, presenting an extensive menu brimming with specialties, ensuring the day began on a perfect note. We enjoyed fresh fruits and pastries, accompanied by steaming cups of coffee and orange juice, often augmented by the delectable dilemma of choosing between tantalizing options such as omelets, eggs benedict, or succulent steak.
While our onshore explorations often precluded us from experiencing onboard lunches, the occasions we did indulge were a symphony of flavours, from succulent seafood, including mussels, tuna, prawns, and an array of salads, to exquisite desserts.
Dinner, a highlight unto itself, unfolded al fresco under a star-studded canopy on most evenings, weather permitting. A five-course extravaganza tantalized the senses, with a menu that metamorphosed nightly and a curated wine pairing that catered to every palate. Our inaugural evening was hosted in an intimate enclave known as the VIP area, a romantic space where celestial bodies witnessed a culinary journey. Culinary artistry was present in every dish – from the delicate “L’oeuf Poule Au Caviar ‘Surprise’” to succulent lobster, filet mignon, and the pièce de résistance, the divine desserts. A testament to the culinary mastery aboard, special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries evoked personalized creations.
Dining choices transcended the ordinary, catering to an array of dietary preferences – raw, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian, organic options and many delectable healthy choices. A curated wine menu complemented the culinary experience, with the majority of choices seamlessly woven into the all-inclusive fabric of the journey. For aficionados of the vine, the SeaDream cellar unveiled a treasure trove of Old and New World wines.
Elevating the culinary escapade, dining aboard SeaDream emerged as a voyage into gastronomic nirvana, where each day unveiled a tapestry of flavours destined to create indelible memories.
The Maritime Masterpiece
The mega-yacht, a veritable testament to nautical artistry, stands as a testament to maritime sophistication. With 56 meticulously appointed Staterooms and two lavish suites accommodating a maximum of 112 discerning souls, and a formidable crew numbering 95, the vessel spans a majestic 344 feet. Earning the accolade of “Best Small Luxury Cruise Ship of 2023,” the vessel masterfully lives up to its prestigious acclaim.
A Wealth of Pursuits
The vessel enveloped us in a realm of ceaseless wonder, where languorous hours on the pool deck – ensconced in plush sunbeds – effortlessly gave way to serene interludes at the spa or the serenity of the library, where shelves teemed with literary treasures. Morning yoga sessions, visits to the state-of-the-art gymnasium, present a fusion of wellness and rejuvenation. Evenings revealed a superb choice to enjoy – from Black Jack games to melodic karaoke, and pulsating rhythms spun by a skilled DJ. The Top of the Yacht Bar beckoned for post-dinner cocktails, while an onboard boutique showcased an assortment of brands including Boss and Villequebrun, alongside SeaDream’s exclusive merchandise, sun protectants, eyewear, headwear, and exquisite jewelry.
The Odyssey Beyond
The a fabulous of excursions unfolded as an integral facet of the journey. From invigorating cycling escapades around pristine islands to the allure of snorkeling, swimming with pigs, immersive dolphin encounters, delicious lobster luncheons on idyllic sandbars, and jeep odysseys exploring hidden island caverns – each one wove a captivating narrative. A crowning gem amid these maritime adventures, the champagne-infused caviar beach party, embodied the very ethos that defines SeaDream. We embarked on a captivating exploration of the Bahamian archipelago, tracing an enchanting route from West Palm Beach to Nassau, and through the charming Exumas, returning to the embrace of West Palm Beach – seven days and nights of unparalleled heaven.
In the embrace of the winter sun, SeaDream 1 and 2 traverse boundless horizons, bestowing discerning travelers with treasured passages through the Bahamas, Caribbean, and British Virgin Islands. At the end of April, a momentous Atlantic crossing awaits – a 13-day voyage ushering explorers to the splendors of Europe’s coastal treasures, encompassing Spain, France, Italy, Greece, and an array of picturesque ports.
In Praise of Excellence
Our hearts brimmed with a sense of privilege, to be invited to experience this journey, which we hold dear as one of the planet’s preeminent yachting escapades. Moments transformed into cherished memories, and amidst the sublime ambience, we forged meaningful connections with some wonderful SeaDreamers.
A Final Ode
The allure of chartering the yacht for an exclusive family or group journey, replete with the embrace of all-inclusive luxury, stands as a great option for important celebrations.
This narrative stands as a testament to a remarkable chapter etched into our lives – a chapter that unequivocally merits a place on every adventurer’s bucket list.
P.S. There is no doubt – this is yachting, not mere cruising!
A: Miami, Florida (USA), SeaDream Yacht Club, 601 Brickell Key Drive Suite 700, Miami, FL 33131
T: +1 800-707-4911
Monday-Friday 2 a.m. to 8 p.m EST
Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m EST
A: Oslo, Norway, SeaDream Yacht Club, Pustutveien 18, NO-1396 Billingstad, Norway
T: +47 67 79 25 85 (new number as of mid-2022)
Monday-Friday 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. CET
Written by Luxuria Lifestyle International Group Editor Debbie Stone