What to Expect from Silversea Cruises’ Changing Fleet
Rendering courtesy of Silversea Cruises
Luxury cruise line Silversea Cruises made the announcement that it would be spending $170 million to refresh its entire fleet, extending even to its Silversea Expeditions brand, making the refurbishment plans its biggest ever.
First on the list to be improved are the Silver Whisper, Silver Wind, Silver Discoverer and, as previously scheduled, Silver Cloud.
Silversea Cruises has typically built its vessels in pairs starting with the 1994 Silver Cloud and 1995 Silver Wind sister ships and 2000 Silver Shadow and 2001 Silver Whisper duo. The Silver Spirit, launched in 2009, has been awaiting its sister ship for some time, but will soon see it in the slightly larger Silver Muse come 2017.
As that new ship comes online, the oldest Cloud (rendered above in Silversea Expeditions livery) in the classic fleet will transfer over to the expeditions one. It’s unknown what amount of the $170 million will or won’t be allocated to the vessel’s already planned hull strengthening to prepare it for polar regions. Perhaps it will receive additional enhancements once in dry-dock in August 2017 and before relaunching as soon as November 2017. If nothing else, it will add a fleet of 18 zodiacs and have its capacity reduced from 260 to 200 for an even greater passenger space ratio.
By 2017, the Silversea Cruises fleet will again consist of just five vessels, and the Silversea Expeditions fleet will then have four. The Cloud’s Silver Wind sister will be on its own but sparkling after its October 2016 scheduled refurbishment set to include enhanced furniture and furnishings, interactive on-demand television upgrades, new flooring for La Terrazza and the Main Restaurant and a complete overhaul of the pool deck teak.
The Silver Whisper will be similarly updated at the end of the year with primarily refreshed surfaces like dark emperor marble flooring in suite bathrooms, newly tiled pool and fresh chaise lounges and new carpets, hardwood floors and furniture in The Restaurant and La Terrazza. Technologically, the ship will also receive two new satellite antennas for faster internet connections, always a helpful addition.
But it’s Silversea Expeditions’ Silver Discoverer, a vessel I’ve personally sailed on twice, that will be reworked the most this October according to the current plans. The Restaurant is currently very elegant for dinner but also very dark in decor, so its intended lighter palette will be a welcome improvement as will be the new furniture at the pool grill and Explorer Lounge, where already the ship’s library selection has been improved since my first cruise onboard.
The biggest change will be the conversion of the Discoverer Lounge upstairs which is used for breakfast and lunch service. As it is enhanced into “a sophisticated lounge in which to relax, read and reflect on the day’s excursions,” it will likely displace all meals, save for al fresco ones, to The Restaurant which is actually a better use of the space, which until now has been underutilized during the day.
Not yet mentioned in the refurbishment details are the line’s Silver Shadow and newest Silver Spirit, as well as the expedition brand’s Silver Explorer and Silver Galapagos, but the company says more information regarding the rest of the fleet will come over time. Just how the deployment of the Silver Cloud as an expedition vessel will affect the positioning of the three smaller vessels is also unknown, but surely the Cloud will make the rough Drake Passage towards Antarctica a tad more bearable on the larger ship.
More by Jason Leppert
Get Travel Deals and Travel News
Recent Travel Opinions
Features & Advice
Airlines & Airports
Destination & Tourism