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  • Yacht Club Stateroom

Sea Dream I Berlitz Review

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Berlitz Rating:

Luxury Travel
Ship Beam (ft/m):
Ship Builder:
Wartsila (Finland)
Ship Cabins (for one person):
Ship Cabins (total):
Ship Cabins (wheelchair accessible):
Ship Cabins (with private balcony):
Ship Casino (gaming tables):
Ship Crew/Passenger Ratio:
Ship Cruise Line:
SeaDream Yacht Club
Ship Elevators:
Ship Entered Service:
Apr 1984/May 2002
Ship Former Names:
Seabourn Goddess I, Sea Goddess I
Ship Hot Tubs (on deck):
Ship IMO Number:
Ship Length (ft/m):
Ship Library:
Ship Onboard currency:
Ship Passenger Decks:
Ship Passenger Space Ratio:
Ship Passengers (lower beds):
Ship Propulsion:
diesel (3,540kW)/2
Ship Self-Service Launderette:
Ship Size:
Boutique Ship
Ship Size Range (sq ft/m):
Ship Star Rating:
Ship Swimming Pools (outdoors):
Ship Tonnage:
Ship Total Crew:
Ship Wheelchair accessibility:
For ultra-stylish cruising on this informal, pocket-sized ship

Seadream - Sea Dream I

Overview: SeaDream Iis for sophisticated, well-traveled couples. Rejecting today’s huge standard resort cruise ships, they are looking for a small ship with excellent food approaching gourmet standards, and fine European-style service in surroundings that border on the elegant and refined, while remaining informal.

The Ship: SeaDream I is for sophisticated, well-traveled couples. Rejecting today’s huge standard resort cruise ships, its clientele is looking for a small ship with excellent food approaching gourmet standards, and fine European-style service in surroundings that border on the elegant and refined, while remaining informal.SeaDream I (and sister ship SeaDream II) were originally funded by about 800 investors, and operated under the Norske Cruise banner, and named Sea Goddess I andSea Goddess II. They have an ultra-sleek profile, with deep blue hull and white superstructure, and the ambience of a private club. Purchased by SeaDream Yacht Club in 2001, they were completely refurbished, with many changes to public rooms and outdoor areas. Some new features were added to create contemporary, chic, and desirable, if aging, vessels.A ‘Top of the Yacht’ bar, crafted in warm wood, was added to both ships. So were eight special alcoves set to the port and starboard sides of the funnel, equipped with two-person sunloungers with thick pads (and two equipped for one person); however, there is quite a bit of noise from the adjacent funnel. You are encouraged to sleep under the stars, if you wish, and cotton sleep suits are provided.At the front part of the deck there are more sunloungers and a couple of large hammocks, as well as a golf simulator with a choice of 30 courses.Inside, there is a feeling of unabashed but discreet sophistication. Elegant public rooms have flowers and potpourri everywhere. The main social gathering places are the lounge, a delightful library/living room with a selection of about 1,000 books, a piano bar – which can be more like a karaoke bar at times – and a small casino with two blackjack tables and five slot machines.All drinks (including good-quality Champagne, but not premium drink brands and connoisseur wines), farmed caviar, and gratuities are included, but port charges and insurance are not.

Accommodation: There are four types – in six price categories (depending on location, size, and grade) – which, from the smallest to the largest, are : Yacht Club (standard) Cabin; Commodore Club Suite; Admiral Suite; and Owner’s Suite.Incorrectly called ‘suites’ in the brochure, Yacht Club Cabins are, more correctly, fully equipped mini-suites with an outside view through windows or portholes, depending on deck and price category. Each measures 195 sq ft (18 sq m), which is not large by today’s cruise ship standards; however, it is large compared to cabins aboard many private motor yachts, and extremely large when compared to oceangoing racing yachts. The sleeping area has twin beds that can be put together to form a queen-size bed, positioned next to the window or porthole, so you can entertain in the living area without going past the sleeping area, as you must aboard the slightly larger Seabourn or Silversea ships. A curtain separates the sleeping and lounge areas. All cabinetry and furniture is of thick blond wood, with nicely rounded edges.In the lounge area, a long desk has six drawers, plus a vertical cupboard unit that houses a sensible safe, refrigerator, and drinks cabinet stocked with your choice of drinks. There is also a 20-ins flat-screen television, CD and DVD player, and an MP3 audio player with more than 100 selections. The beds have the finest linens, including thick cotton duvets, and hypoallergenic pillows are also available. There’s little room under the beds for luggage, although this can be taken away and stored.One drawback is the fact that the insulation between cabins is not particularly good, although rarely does this present a problem, as most passengers are generally quiet, considerate types, who are allergic to noise. Incidentally, a sleep suit is supplied in case you want to sleep out on deck under the stars in one of the on-deck two-person beds.For larger accommodation, choose one of 16 Commodore Club Suites. These consist of two standard cabins with an interconnecting door, thus providing you with a healthy 380 sq ft (35 sq m) of living space. One cabin is made into a lounge and dining room, with table and up to four chairs, while the other becomes your sleeping area. The advantage is that you get two bathrooms. One disadvantage is that the soundproofing between cabins could be better.For the largest living space, go for the Owner’s Suite. This measures a grand 490 sq ft (46 sq m). It’s the only accommodation with a bathroom that has a full-size tub; there’s also a separate shower enclosure and lots of space for toiletries.Added in 2008–9, the Admiral Suite occupies space previously devoted to the ship’s boutique, adjacent to the piano bar/library. It’s a little smaller than the Owner’s Suite, but is well laid out and extremely comfortable.When the ships became SeaDream I and II, all the bathrooms were totally refurbished. The cheerful decor is chic, with soft colors and large (beige) marble tiles. The former tiny sit-in bathtubs were taken out – these are missed by some passengers – and replaced by a multi-jet power glassed-in shower enclosure. A washbasin set in a marble-look surround and two glass shelves make up the facilities, and an under-sink cupboard provides further space for larger toiletries.However, the bathrooms really are small, particularly for anyone of larger-than-average build. Also, the bathroom door opens inwards, so space inside is at a premium. The toilet is located in an awkward position, and, unless you close the door, you can see yourself in the mirror facing of the closets opposite the bathroom door.

Cuisine/Dining: The Restaurant is elegant and inviting, and has bird’s-eye maple wood-paneled walls and alcoves showcasing beautiful handmade glass creations. It is cozy, yet with plenty of space around each table for fine service, and the ship provides a culinary celebration in an open-seating arrangement, so you can dine whenever, and with whomever, you want. Course-by-course meals can also be served on the open deck.Tables can be configured for two, four, six, or eight. They are laid with a classic setting of a real glass base (show) plate, Porsgrund china, pristine white monogrammed table linen, and fresh flowers.Candlelit dinners and leather-bound menus are part of the inviting setting. There’s even a box of spare spectacles for reading the menu, should you forget your own.The SeaDream Yacht Club experience really is all about good food. Only the freshest and finest-quality ingredients are used. Fine, unhurried European service is provided. Additionally, good-quality Champagne is available whenever you want it, and so is caviar – American farmed Hackleback sturgeon malossol caviar, sadly, and not Russian caviar, whose purchase and supply today is limited. The ice cream, which is made on board, however, is excellent.Everything is prepared individually to order for dinner, and the cuisine is extremely creative, and special orders are possible. You can also dine course by course in your suite for any meal, at any time during meal hours. The dining room isn’t open for lunch, which disappoints those who don’t want to eat outside, particularly in hot climates.Good-quality table wines are included in the cruise fare for lunch and dinner. Real wine connoisseurs, however, will appreciate the availability of an extra wine list, full of special vintages and premier crus at extra cost. If you want to do something different with a loved one, you can also arrange to dine one evening on the open (but covered) deck, overlooking the swimming pool and stern – it is a rather romantic setting.The Topside Restaurant is an informal open-air eatery with roll-down sides (in case of inclement weather), and is open for breakfast, lunch, or the occasional dinner. Teak tables and chairs add a touch of class.

Entertainment: There is no evening entertainment as such (it’s not needed), other than a duo or solo musician to provide music for listening and dancing to in the lounge. Dinner is the main event; DVDs are available to take to your cabin.

Spa/Fitness: The holistic approach to wellbeing plays a big part in relaxation and body pampering aboard SeaDream I. The Asian Spa/Wellness Centre has three massage rooms, a small sauna, and steam shower enclosure.

Berlitz Guide © Apa Publishing 2017

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