Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Silverseas Whisper

Last Saturday Muriel and I traveled with Porter Airlines(see last post) to Montreal to visit the Silversea Cruises Silver Whisper. It's not often that we get an opportunity to visit and inspect a cruise ship as our offices are based in the Toronto area(not exactly a coastal port). During the autumn many of the large cruise line's ships begin their Canada/New England itineraries and make a stop in Montreal allowing us the rare opportunity to see these wonderful ships for ourselves.

The Silversea Cruise company is independently owned by an Italian family - the Lefebvres of Rome. There is a genuine pride of ownership and a true Italian passion for embracing the best of life. Each of their ships is considered 'small' - holding no more than 540 passengers on their largest ship, the Silver Spirit and only 296 on the Silver Wind and Silver Cloud. Silversea continues to sail against the trends, with intimate ships that offer not only a richly abundant and highly personalized experience aboard, but a stimulating and authentic travel experience that is far more meaningful and life-enriching for their guests.

The Silver Whisper was just recently refurbished making the interior of the ship feel almost brand new. Throughout the ship you get the feeling of refined taste and an understated, mature design style. Nothing garish or sparkling about it. Tasteful art and sculptures decorate every hallway focusing on many different themes. If only we hadn't been in such a rush to see every corner of the ship we could have spent more time viewing all the magnificent masterpieces. Clearly the passengers are being wowed by the whole experience and not flashy decor.

Each of the common areas we were shown had passengers indulging themselves - reading books, playing on their iPads, enjoying a cup of coffee - everyone looked very relaxed and comfortable.

Silversea is one of the few ALL-INCLUSIVE cruise lines who really mean all-inclusive. Some of the included amenities are butler service, complimentary beverages served throughout the ship including fine wines, champagne, spirits, and specialty coffees, gratuities, 24 hour room service, fitness classes, and on-board entertainment. This years brochure rates even include FREE AIR and TRANSFERS from select departure gates and are 60% OFF!

Silversea also offers it's guest a complimentary shore-side 'Experience', for example on their Inaugural World Cruise in 2011 aboard the Silver Spirit you can experience "Tea with Picasso" in Barcelona at the Picasso Museum located along the narrow winding streets of the marvelously restored Gothic Quarter. The Museum houses one of the most extensive collections of artworks by the 20th-century artist, including his blue period paintings and his cubist Las Meninas series. This is one of the most visited museums in Barcelona and Silversea guests are offered a private opening and tour, followed by tea service in the courtyard. They also offer "Night of 1001 Delights" in Dubai where you'll watch the sun set over the high golden dunes as you enter an elaborate torch-lit Arabian campsite. Try sand-boarding in the desert dunes. Get beautiful henna designs on your hands or try out traditional Arabic dresses. Then relax on majlis (low cushions) in a tent, smoking a shisha (water pipe) and watching belly dancers perform. And for an authentic taste of Arabia, dine on delicious Arabian barbecue beside a blazing bonfire with traditional cups of coffee and dates. An experience right out of Tales of the Arabian Nights... exclusively for Silversea guests and offered on select sailings.

Silversea Cruises is also renowned for their customization. If you prefer a certain drink or menu item, the staff will do their best to accommodate your wishes. Their menus also offer a selection of fresh, locally grown produce and seafood directly from the ports they visit. The 'Le Champagne' restaurant offers a six-course epicurean experience of rare wines and regionally inspired cuisine to a maximum of 16 guests in their own 'private' dining room. The Black Rock Dining option seemed to be a big hit with the guests too - offered poolside in The Grill, it's an interactive dining venue where fresh seafood and prime meats are grilled table-side on a heated volcanic rock plate! And of course, we can't forget to mention the 24 hour room service or in-suite dining from The Restaurant during dinner hours. If a culinary experience is what you are looking for Silversea offers Culinary Arts Voyages and Wine Series Voyages with world-renowned guests, lectures, tastings, demonstrations and optional private tours.

The cabins are all ocean-view suites featuring butler service, champagne upon arrival, fresh fruit and flowers, refrigerator and bar setup stocked with your preferences, European bath amenities, down duvets, fine bed linens, a choice of 9 pillow types, plush robes and slippers, personalized stationery, binoculars, and umbrella. For those guest wishing to upgrade to the Medallion, Silver, Royal, Grand or Owner's Suite - they can expect added amenities of laundry service throughout their voyage, afternoon canapes, Nespresso coffee machine and dinner at Officer's table to just name a few.

We left the Silver Whisper after a delicious lunch with complimentary wines definitely wishing we were one of the lucky passengers heading off to New England later that evening.

Next September we hope to be able to visit the Silversea Prince Albert II ("The World's Most Luxurious Expedition Ship") when it makes a stop in the Port of Toronto on it's way to Bermuda. Perhaps I'll do a little research on the Silversea Expeditions for my next blog entry. Oh, and The World was docked right behind the Silver Whisper. This is one ship I intend to learn more about. Rumor has it that it's just unbelievable!

If you'd like more information on a Silversea Cruise please don't hesitate to contact Muriel for all the latest offers, itineraries, cabin availability and up to date pricing.

Here's some snapshots I took while touring the ship.

Deck 8/Pool Deck and view of Dining area

Panorama Lounge/ Deck 8

The Bar /Deck 5

Upper Level of The Show Lounge/Deck 6

Le Champagne Private Dining Room/Deck 7

View of the Aida from the Observation Lounge

For more details on Silversea Cruises you can check out our website ( or the links below.

Silversea Cruises

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