Day after day, the kitchen brigades for Ovation’s various dining venues kept turning out tasty dish after tasty dish – Chateaubriand was our choice for Christmas dinner, and we had Beef Wellington, delicious soups, Caviar, fabulous pasta dishes and some fantastic fish throughout our ten days aboard. We dined at The Grill by renowned American chef Thomas Keller of French Laundry and Per Se fame. One can pre-reserve a table once each cruise. Guests love this spot and often waitlist themselves to return. There is no extra charge, and the food and service are marvellous. The adjacent TK bar is a hopping spot with a pianist tickling the ivories every evening and a great bartender making us terrific cocktails – she nailed my favourite, a Sidecar. Champagne flows on the ship, and a wine list of included varietals is included in the cruise fare. A premium wine list is available – perhaps to celebrate a special occasion. Other dining choices include Sushi, The Colonnade and al fresco dining at Earth and Ocean at The Patio – and in-suite dining if preferred. We often sat outside on The Colonnade’s popular terrace for lunch or by the pool on Deck 9 – with attentive service always nearby.
Seabourn is known for their special moments, whether it be Caviar in the Surf, the officers on Deck farewell, watching singers and a band performance by the pool while being served tasty treats and the overall joie de vivre that emanates throughout the ship. The atmosphere is delightful – nothing is too much trouble, and the experience is elegantly luxurious, with plenty of casual moments interspersed. And with a maximum of 600 guests on Ovation and her sister, Seabourn Encore, it often feels like a private yacht – never crowded, yet it’s easy to meet fellow guests – the all-inclusive atmosphere and open-seating dining ensures a lovely social camaraderie.
Our itinerary took us to St Lucia, Guadeloupe, and St Kitts, with a unique beach bbq at Carambola Beach. We then sailed south to the ABC Islands - Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao, before visiting charming and small Bequia in the Grenadines.
Two snorkelling excursions were terrific – particularly in Bonaire, where we enjoyed some of the best underwater marvels with thriving coral reefs and plentiful, multi-coloured fish.
An exceptionally fantastic Seabourn moment is their “Caviar in the Surf” beach BBQ day, which we enjoyed in St Kitts. Guests can spend the entire day on the private beach with lounge chairs and towels provided, lots of watersports opportunities and the pièce de résistance, being offered Caviar with its accoutrements while sipping Champagne in the water. Staff and officers serve from a paddleboard as guests run headlong into the sea to experience this fantastic ritual once on every cruise. Then it’s time for lobster tails and other delicious bbq choices as the staff cook a full lunch on the shore - this is what luxury cruising and being pampered is all about.
Naturally, the suite accommodations are spacious and beautifully appointed, with a shower, a separate bath, two vanity sinks, a sitting area, a lovely balcony, and a walk-in closet with ample hangers. A mini-bar is stocked to your preference with both alcohol and soft drinks and is replenished as required.
With the inclusive lifestyle at sea offered by Seabourn, with gratuities neither required nor expected, a Wellness program from the renowned Dr. Andrew Weill, varied and excellent entertainment options including a collaboration with Sir Tim Rice of Lion King fame and Seabourn Conversations enrichment lectures, this is the cruise for you.