Monday, Sept. 6, 2022 – It has been a lively five days since we began this Mediterranean journey with Windstar Cruises. After a full day of private touring in Venice, we boarded the sailing ship Wind Surf and headed south. Several stops in Croatia and Montenegro certainly educated us on the history of this region.
Each city, town or island we visited – Zadar, Hvar, Dubrovnik and Kotor – all had lessons to teach, from the early Roman settlers to the Balkans war of the 1990s which broke up communist Yugoslavia into several states, most of which became independent republics.
Thus, our days on board have been very busy and there was little time to reflect on the entire experience. Today is our first – and only – day at sea as we travel from Montenegro to Greece (zipping right by Albania) and I finally have some time to share some thoughts.
This is my first sailing on Windstar and these are initial impressions:
The staff is fabulous. I have yet to meet any worker on board that does not say hello with a smile and offer assistance, if needed. The majority are from the Philippines and Indonesia with a nice mix of other nationalities. They are happy and gracious.
The food has also been exceptionally good for a small ship. Whether it be rack of lamb, escargot, simple oatmeal or even Caesar salad, meals are served promptly and appropriately hot. The company has an affiliation with the James Beard Foundation and the benefit of this shows. The ship has two specialty restaurants, one a French bistro named Stella and the other an outside grill called Candles, and these are at no cost. We’ve already eaten at Stella twice, we have reservations for tomorrow night at Candles.
The laundry services are exceptional! While I am always impressed with ships that offer do-it-yourself washers and dryers, I like this even better – packing up a bagful in the morning and having it back by dinnertime, all clean and pressed. Pressed! Windstar offers this service as perk with many of its special packages, but we opted to buy it for $144/week. We had been advised to do this in online forums and I totally agree! Next time on Windstar I will pack far less.
Cabins are on the tight side but are comfortably appointed. There is a queen bed, one small chair, a small table and one desk. Storage is ample. On the first day of the cruise, Windstar offered cabin upgrades for $100/night per person to a suite. These suites are two regular cabins combined so they have a king bed, a sofa, a lounge chair, two small tables, two desks and two bathrooms plus an illy coffee maker. This being our honeymoon, we opted for the deal…figuring we each would kick in $900 toward the $1,800 cost. Again, so worth it.
There are 250 passengers on this cruise, on a ship that carries 342. So the space is comfortable for all.
Next post, I will talk more about the ship itself. Like, there are no balconies.
Many thanks to #Windstar Cruises and #All Things Cruise!
See sailings here Windstar Cruises (cruisecompete.com)