Cruise line spotlight: Seabourn Cruise Line
Seabourn Cruise Line has evolved into a firm cruising favourite, and, with the promise of all-suite accommodation, gourmet cuisine and highly personalised service, it’s not hard to see why
Words: Joanna Hall
Seabourn Cruise Line was founded in 1988 with the launch of the 208-guest Seabourn Pride. In the decades that followed, it would add to its fleet and refine its offering, evolving into an all-inclusive, luxury cruise line.
Fast-forward to May 2018, and Seabourn Ovation was christened in time for the cruise line’s 30th anniversary celebrations. She’s a boutique ship, which has redefined luxury cruising yet again, with stunning décor and personality, a world-class art collection, improved technology and five restaurants, including The Grill by top US restaurateur Thomas Keller.
In June 2021, three years after redefining luxury with Ovation, Seabourn will be launching its first purpose-built luxury expedition ship, Seabourn Venture. She will accommodate 264 adventure-minded guests in oceanfront suites and casually elegant social areas designed by hospitality star Adam D. Tihany. Seabourn Venture will be equipped with two mini-submarines as well as the regulation fleet of Zodiacs and water toys, and its Polar Class 6 ice-rating allows extensive exploration of the Polar regions.
Seabourn’s decadent experiences are hard to beat, especially when the ultra-luxury cruise line’s innovators keep outdoing themselves.
Itinerary insight: South-East Asia on Seabourn Ovation
Cruising through South-East Asia on Seabourn Ovation offers a fascinating glimpse into a distant past, as well as an easy way to travel in style
Words: Joanna Hall
It’s a steamy, overcast morning as we pull up in front of Sihanoukville’s Wat Krom temple. Although we’re slightly reluctant to give up our cool, air-conditioned cabins for the heat outside, the promise of seeing one of South Cambodia’s most important religious sites proves to be too alluring.
Moments later, children surround us, eager to socialise and offer their services as guides, while one small boy entertains us by running and flying a homemade kite in the temple courtyard. It’s a serene, surreal moment in what was once a war-ravaged country and, as we discovered, it was just one of the many surprises we would encounter in exotic South-East Asia.
Cruising the Orient in the middle of an Australian summer is an ideal way to enjoy some favourite Asian cities, as well as experience a line-up of lesser-known ports for the first time. And when it comes to decadent cruising, it’s hard to beat the ships of Seabourn.
All guests have a spacious suite featuring a private balcony, while anyone looking for even more exclusivity can splurge on a visit to The Retreat, a private sun deck complete with cabanas, a hot tub and waiters happy to supply cocktails, a light lunch, or a cooling Evian mist spray.
Even the bus that whisked us around Sihanoukville’s colourful streets, courtesy of Seabourn, is equipped with air-conditioning, bottled water and a knowledgeable tour guide. We’re lapping up the luxury, and giving Seabourn Ovation big ticks for everything from the onboard amenities to the entertainment. And did I mention the food? Seabourn has upheld its long-standing tradition of serving French champagne and caviar on demand, and has introduced the popular evening ‘pop-up’ venue Earth & Ocean at the Patio.
Vietnam & Thailand Cruise Itinerary
The 18-night fly-cruise package departs from Sydney on January 2, 2020, arriving in Hong Kong for 2 nights. Seabourn Ovation calls at Hong Kong, Halong Bay, Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, Sihanoukville, Ko Kood and Bangkok and ends in Singapore, for a 2-night post-cruise stay. Fares start from $10,651, per person, twin share.