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Silver Cloud Facts & Figures

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First impressions count. When we arrive at the Venice cruise terminal by taxi, we gaze at Silversea's shiny white Silver Cloud berthed a few feet from us and wonder what to do next. It is dead quiet here. Sure, we are three hours early, but this is embarkation day and there is no sign of the normal hustle and bustle. Suddenly, a lady wearing a Silversea uniform appears out of thin air. She is Margaret Scoggins, Silver Cloud's Social Hostess. We shake hands, and she says our suite will not be ready yet, but of course we are very welcome to drop off our luggage, go on board and have a refreshing drink and a bite. When we tell her we have never been to Venice before, she smiles understandingly, points us in the right direction and tells us to enjoy the city and to come back anytime in the afternoon. Welcome to the world of Silversea!

Ever since its inception in 1994, Silversea Cruises has been winning numerous awards, and has been named "Best Luxury Cruise Line" time after time. With their fleet of four smaller sized cruise ships, Silversea has brought the "all inclusive" concept to the seven seas, catering to a well-heeled clientele from around the globe. Cabins? No! Silversea ships only have suites. Tipping? No! Tipping is actively discouraged. Paying for drinks? No! Everything seems to be included in the cruise fare. With a brochure that does not look out of place on the coffee table, pre-cruise documentation that is second to none, and an enviable reputation for excellence, I was very much looking forward to my cruise on Silver Cloud to see for myself what Silversea is all about.

 

Traveling with my good friend Teun Wim (two first names; one and the same person), we flew from Amsterdam to Venice on Wednesday, August 21st, 2002 and embarked on Silver Cloud that same afternoon. The ship sailed from Venice the following day at 6.00 PM, heading for the Croatian ports of Hvar and Dubrovnik. After a relaxing sea day we enjoyed the Italian resorts of Sorrento and Amalfi before spending another day at sea, cruising towards the Spanish Balearic islands of Menorca and Mallorca. On Saturday, August 31st it was all over when Silver Cloud docked at Barcelona and we reluctantly left our home away from home, cherishing many good memories of our time on board.

In this extensive cruise review, I hope to paint a picture of what life on board a six-star cruise ship is all about. Because as it turned out, Luxury Cruising is a lot more than good food, fine wines, and excellent service. It's all about attention to detail - about experiencing the unexpected. Truly "A cruise with a silver lining"!
 
   

Photos and text: 2002-2011 Bart de Boer - www.ShipParade.com

First published on October 6, 2002

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