If you’ve done much ocean cruising, you’ve probably noticed there are a lot of ships in each port; many offering a very similar experience. There is one however doing something different and with only two small ships. I’m referring to Azamara Club Cruises. This boutique cruise line is very special. Rather than focusing on the ship itself, they put the spotlight on an immersive destination experience. This is something rarely found with typical “mass market” cruises.
Longer Port stays well into the night
Many people say that Azamara Club Cruises (at sea) is similar to some of the best European river cruise companies. With only 700 guests, Azamara can really focus on service and fine dining while creating a club like atmosphere. They boast about their longer port stays, lasting well into the night – often till 10 or 11:00 PM. Compare this to most other ocean cruises that depart by 6:00 PM or earlier. This extra time will allow you truly immerse yourself in the port. You can leisurely visit nearby towns or the countryside or relax for dinner in local restaurants. Azamara’s “Cruise Global, dine local” initiative is really something very unique for ocean cruising.
There is perhaps one drawback to the destination focus: in some ways, the ship is like a big floating hotel. Of course, it is an extremely NICE floating hotel! Still, at 6:00 PM you may find that the majority of the passengers are still ashore. Those who decided to forgo getting off the ship might find it a little too quiet. For others who prefer a quiet setting might appreciate the extra peace and tranquility for a few extra hours. If you prefer to eat early, you easily pop into the dining room of your choice as it will be likely be very quiet until the others guests trickle in later in the night.
Intimate Ports of call
Since Azamara’s ships are smaller than average, they are able to visit intimate ports that larger ships simply can’t. For example, in 2016 you could visit quaint Mediterranean ports such as Taormina in Sicily. In Italy, ports like Trapani , Portovenere, Almafi, and Sorrento. Want to experience the French Riviera, how about Nice, St.Tropez, Cannes, Cassis, Porto Vechio and Monte Carlo?
More overnight stays with Azamara Club Cruises
Azamara also boasts about their overnight stays in many popular ports. There are overnight stays in cities like Dubrovnik, Barcelona, Venice and Florence in the Mediterranean. How about St. Petersburg, Russia, Stockholm or Amsterdam? There are even options for the Baltic states in Northern Europe.
As a luxury travel consultant, I find that Azamara Club Cruises can be the perfect fit for many of my clients who want more a river cruise experience. With some attractive promotions currently offered, it could be a good time to find out if it’s right for you. To schedule a consultation, contact me.