Understated luxury

May 8, 2003
Author: P&S


The recent visit to Southern Africa by the Radissons cruise ship Seven Seas Mariner brought a touch of real class to the local cruise scene, with the 48 075-gt 752-passenger ship impressing all who went aboard with her understated luxury. Somehow Seven Seas Mariner manages to leave an impression of space, old-style courtesy, care and attention that is often lacking in the noisy and rushed environment on some modern ships.

A visit to the ship, which consisted of an evening spent on board while in port, presented the opportunity to chat with a local North Coast couple who had previously travelled fairly extensively with Radissons, albeit on another of their other ships, the Seven Seas Navigator. For them Radissons remains in a class by itself and is well worth recommending.

Both ships are similar in size, layout and ambience except that the Seven Seas Mariner became the first cruise ship in which all cabins/staterooms came with balcony verandahs when she was launched in 2001. Speaking of cabins, these are huge and accommodating even without the verandahs, and extend from 28 mē for the smallest basic suite to 147 mē for the master, which includes two bedrooms. Each suite has its own sitting area and is fitted with TV and VCR as well as a fully stocked and complimentary bar fridge, walk-in closets and marble baths. For some categories butler service is included, for others cabin attendants are on 24-hour call.

The ship includes well-fitted lounges and several little nooks dotted around the ship in which to spend a quiet moment or two, a night club which becomes an observation lounge by day, a well-stocked library including videos and DVDs for use in your suite, casino, a cost-friendly Internet room, the usual spa and health rooms, indoor and outdoor swimming pools and stacks of deck space for exercise and fresh healthy sea air. The two-tiered Constellation Theatre presents Broadway and other popular shows nightly.

Seven Seas Mariner has four restaurants leaving it to your choice as to which and when you use. From the standard Compass Rose Restaurant to more specialised dining, each with complimentary French wines accompany the meals, or the more informal Bistro, the standard of dining can be matched according to your mood. Two of these restaurants are intimate and require a reservation, while one of them, Latitudes, provides cosmopolitan cuisine from a fixed menu. Or should you prefer there is always room service utilising a table normally tucked away under the bed, served with white linen, silver and china.

Judging from such a superficial introduction to the ship, Seven Seas Mariner seems an ideal way to reward yourself. As the name suggests the ship cruises the world.

Full details available from +27 11 481 7974 or your local travel agent.


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