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with Caribbean sailings attracting slightly younger folks than European itineraries. It is not uncommon to see a few couples in their 30s, often on honeymoon. Unlike larger ships, SeaDream does not offer multiple dining venues. They more than make up for that by serving as many meals outdoors as possible. During the en- tire week, I had only three meals served in the indoor restaurant. There are no alternate restaurants, no assigned seating and never a need to dress up or even put on a jacket.


D


ining was ambitious, and gener- ally excellent. A few misses at the start of the week (including


a poor room-service cheeseburger with a barely melted slab of American cheese) were isolated events. The small galley offered numerous choices: two particu- larly memorable presentations were a decadent, eight-course Menu Degustation, and a delectable five-course Indian meal featuring a Coconut Prawn Curry. Following one memorable dinner when


anchored off St Barths, I retired to bed not in my cabin, but on the very top of the ship, in a roped-off, private area. There, one of the Balinese Beds had been made up with sheets and blankets and I spent the night sleeping under the twinkling stars and island lights.


Waking up next morning as the sun


peeked over the island’s hills, I realised the Eclipse, the world’s largest private yacht, was anchored nearby. I gazed with interest but felt no jealousy. Yes, SeaDream may lack the balconies and 20,000sq ft spas of larger ships, but its intimate size, friendly ambience and active, outdoor spirit all combine to make them one of the most delightful seagoing experiences possible. 


SEADREAM II FACTFILE


Built: 1985, refurbished 2002 Tonnage: 4,300 Length: 344ft Beam: 47ft Draft: 14ft Speed: 15 knots Passengers: 112 Crew: 95 Passenger Decks: 5 Registry: Bahamas


ITINERARIES: Summer, Mediterranean; winter, Caribbean and Amazon.


MORE INFO: in the UK, call 0800 783 1373; in the US, 1800 707 4911; or visit www.seadream.com.


Winter 2011-12 I WORLD OF CRUISING 53


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