WINDSTAR CRUISES ANNOUNCES A UNIQUE $250 MILLION INITIATIVE
Windstar Cruises announced plans to renovate and lengthen their three Star-Class ships. This constitutes a major expansion for the line without the cost and waiting time required to build a new ship. We view this as a very efficient and economical way to expand the fleet.
First a little background on Windstar. They have a fleet of six yacht-like ships in their inventory. Three ships are Wind-class, which signifies them as yachts with sails. The other three ships, former Seabourn yachts, comprise the Star-class group, and these are the ships to receive the renovation and be lengthened.
There are several game changing facets to this project but the most fascinating one is the lengthening process. Each ship will receive a new section that will add over 83 feet. Still allowing Windstar to enter bays and harbors larger shis simply can not.
Here's the cool stuff. In addition to adding 50 cabins to each ship, each will gain the creation of state-of-the-art public spaces including two new dining locations; new shop and retail space; a much larger fitness center and a new world-class spa.
While in drydock they will also remove seven current engines and install four new, more environmentally friendly engines that will run on cleaner fuel and reduce emissions impact to sailing regions.
Life onboard the Wind Surf.
Among new guest amenities and accommodations in the planning phase are:
50 new suites featuring new suite categories and open floor plan configurations.
Creation of two brand new, larger Owner’s Suites, that combines existing suites to create up to a three-bedroom, two-balcony suite – the first of its kind in the cruise industry.
Two brand new dining experiences including: an intimate, alternative dining restaurant, and a casual barbecue space adjacent to the top deck Star Bar, perfect for outdoor grilling during Windstar’s Signature Onboard Barbecue celebration or enjoying while spending time on deck.
Expanded Veranda Restaurant to offer significantly more ocean-view seating and upgraded dining area.
For existing suites, all-new bathrooms and installation of new sliding doors for the Balcony Suites.
Larger pool and hot tub that will be reconfigured and elevated offering outstanding views, along with more and enhanced outdoor deck area for relaxing and sun-bathing.
A completely re-imagined and enlarged spa and fitness center to invigorate active guests.
New elevator mid-ship, making access to all decks easy from anywhere on board.
A comfortable, new tender loading area located mid-ship and two new 90-passenger tenders that will ferry guests to port when ships are at anchor.
This is a win for the line and for their guests. Clearly, more guest will now be able to enjoy the Windstar experience on yachts with even more luxury and amenities, while still being able to enjoy an intimate sailing experience. Let's be honest, 312 guest is still very much an intimate sailing experience. I sailed on the 310 guest Wind Surf and absolutely loved it. Felt like I had the ship to myself much of the time.
I really admired the hallways on the Wind Wurf.
The work will be done on Star Breeze, Star Legend, and Star Pride in succession between October 2019 and November 2020. To point out how intimate the Windstar experience is - this project of adding 150 total cabins over three ships represents and overall capacity increase of 24% for the small ship line. That is intimacy at sea, folks.
FYI, The Conde Nast Readers Choice Awards for 2018 selected Windstar Cruises the #3 Small Ship line (fewer than 500 guests) out of 18 lines to receive votes. And there are several prominent names behind Windstar.
Can't wait to see and experience the new project after completion. Cheers