Star Clippers fleet
Review of Star Clippers
Star Clippers Ltd (starclippers.com) is a Sweden-based (Monaco-headquartered) company and "tall sailing ship cruise" travel brand with a fleet of three luxury motorized sailing yachts. All vessels are fitted with computer-controlled sails in addition to the diesel engines.
The company's current fleet includes Star Clipper (4-masted barquentine/1992-built), Star Flyer (4-masted barquentine/1991-built), Royal Clipper (5-masted ship/2000-built). The brand's newest vessel (under charter) was planned to be Flying Clipper (now Golden Horizon). However, the 5-masted sailship (2019-built) was instead chartered to Tradewind Voyages UK.
The "tall ship cruise" company officially started operations in 1991, since when provides 5-star luxury (private yacht-like) vacation travel product and services to its sophisticated clients, with ~60% customer repeat rate. Founded by Mikael Krafft, Star Clippers Ltd now owns and operates the world's largest full-rigged sail ships. Star Clippers flag-states are Malta (registered in Valletta) or Luxembourg - unlike large cruise liners which are usually flagged Panama or Bahamas.
Each of the Star Clippers ships has an aft-located marina platform that is lowered (when the ship is anchored) to serve the company's complimentary scuba diving and water sports activity program. The marina also serves the passenger tendering operations in areas without port infrastructure and facilities (piers, quays, wharves, terminals). When the ship is anchored (at sea), passengers are disembarked via tender boats or Zodiacs (inflatable high-speed boats also used for landings). Each ship has 2-3 outdoor swimming pools (on Sun Deck) which are filled with seawater and open only if weather permits. All the clippers are fully stabilized and with two bilge keels (on both sides of the vessel) to reduce rolling.
The ship's dedicated Water Sports staff assists and guides passengers on water-based activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, deep-sea fishing, banana boating, sunfish/dinghy (sailboat) sailing, kayaking, water skiing, windsurfing. Onboard pre-scheduled on each cruise activities (also provided complimentary to all cabin category passengers) include outdoor aerobics and yoga classes, swimming pool (sundeck), deck BBQ parties, talent nights, crew show, fashion shows, local (itinerary/ports-based) entertainment (live folkloric performances by local artists boarding the yacht).
Above-deck lookout stations (mounted on each mast) are equipped with safety rails and comfortable lounge seats to allow passengers 360-degree observation. Access to these stations is via climbing the masts - with supplied safety vests and dedicated deck crew supervision and assistance.
Shore excursions are optional and cost extra (not cruise fare inclusive). Optionally can be also booked pre-cruise and/or post-cruise tours in both homeports (departure ports) and non-port cities. Cruise line's vessels can be also privately chartered. Ship charter deals are with unique (customized) itineraries and tailor-made activities both onboard and ashore.
Onboard purchases can be made in cash, with travellers checks or via international credit cards ( Visa, American Express, Mastercard) and will be added to passenger's invoice (debited in EUR). Cash or travellers check payments require a EUR 300 deposit. Gratuities (onboard tipping) is not included in the fares (suggested EUR 8 pp per day).
Company's provided cruise documents also include luggage tags, which must be filled out with passenger's name and attached to his/her bags before checking in. Bringing alcoholic beverages on the ship is forbidden. Ashore-purchased alcohol (in call ports) will be taken at the gangway (upon reboarding the ship), stored and returned upon debarkation.
All staterooms are fitted with twin beds (convertible to a double Queen bed), smart HDTV (with DVD player), satellite phone, electronic safe box, dressing table with an armchair, en-suite bathroom (WC, washbasin, shower, hairdryer), 110V flat plugs (for a deposit, adapters can be borrowed from the Reception Desk) and 220V European plugs (on the 5-masted ships).
During summer, Star Clippers cruises as itineraries visit some of the best-known coastal destinations in Europe's Mediterranean, including the Italian and French rivieras, Balearic Islands (Spain), Adriatic Sea's Dalmatian Coast (Croatia), Greece, Turkey. European homeports include Civitavecchia-Rome, Venice, Cannes, Piraeus-Athens,
During winter, the fleet is deployed in regions like Caribbean (Central America) and Southeast Asia. Star Clippers Caribbean homeports include Bridgetown Barbados and Philipsburg St Maarten Island. In Asia, the company homeports in Phuket Thailand, Singapore, Benoa Bali-Indonesia.
When seasonally chnaging the regions, the cruise line offers ship relocation (repositioning) Transatlantic crossings or Suez Canal transits on longer but low-priced voyages (RepositionCruises.com).
(Coronavirus crisis) passenger shipping pause 2020-2021
Due to the COVID pandemic, Star Clippers canceled all Asian cruises with pre-scheduled departures in 2020 March 21, 2020, through August 2021.
Operations restarted in 2021 on August 3 (Royal Clipper/Mediterranean from Piraeus-Athens), August 7 (Star Flyer/Mediterranean from Athens) and November 20 (Star Clipper/Southeast Asia).
All affected bookings received full refunds in FCC (future cruise credit) available for rebooking.
Itinerary of Star Clippers
During summer, Star Clippers cruises as itineraries visit some of the best-known coastal destinations in Europe's Mediterranean, including the Italian and French rivieras, Balearic Islands (Spain), Adriatic Sea's Dalmatian Coast (Croatia), Greece and Turkey. European homeports include Civitavecchia-Rome, Venice, Cannes, Piraeus-Athens,
During winter, the fleet is deployed in regions like the Caribbean (Central America) and Southeast Asia. Star Clippers Caribbean homeports include Bridgetown Barbados and Philipsburg St Maarten Island, In Asia, Star Clipper's homeports in Phuket Thailand, Singapore, Benoa Bali-Indonesia.
When seasonally changing the regions, the cruise line offers ship relocation (repositioning) Transatlantic crossings or Suez Canal transits on longer but low-priced voyages (RepositionCruises.com).
itineraries 2023-2024 (Mediterranean)
For those seeking an extensive and effortlessly curated vacation experience, Star Clippers offers a series of "Grand Voyages" ranging from 13 to 19 days. These voyages grant travelers the opportunity to explore a diverse array of exotic ports across multiple Mediterranean countries, all while indulging in the authentic ambiance of a tall sailing ship.
The leisurely pace of these signature Grand Voyages ensures ample time for in-depth exploration of ports both prominent and hidden. This unhurried approach enables guests to immerse themselves in the allure of ancient ruins, savor panoramic vistas, and relish the culinary treasures of the region. These extensive itineraries encompass a remarkable spectrum of destinations, encompassing the quaint islets of Greece to the vibrant, cliffside hamlets that grace the Italian coastline.
Star Clippers presents this opportunity across all three of its genuine sailing vessels throughout the 2023 and 2024 seasons.
A captivating example is the 19-night journey aboard the Star Flyer, commencing from Valetta (Malta) and culminating in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Canary Islands). The voyage encompasses ports in Malta, Italy, Spain, and Morocco, before transitioning to the Atlantic crossing. The highlights include the picturesque island of Gozo in Malta, Palma in Mallorca with its splendid Gothic cathedral, Motril in Spain with its stunning beaches, and the vibrant Tangiers.
For an immersive exploration of the Greek isles, Star Clippers offers a 14-night round-trip sailing from Athens (Piraeus), encompassing ports in both the Northern and Southern Cyclades, along with Turkey. This journey traverses islands like Skopelos and Skiathos, recognized from the famed Mamma Mia series. The romantic ambiance of Spetses unfolds through its beautiful beaches and winding cobblestone pathways, while the historical significance of Patmos is underscored by its association with the apocalyptic revelations of St. John the Divine. A stopover in Kusadasi, Turkey, opens the door to a tour of the ancient Ephesus ruins.
The Royal Clipper's 14-night Venice to Rome voyage embarks along the Adriatic, unfolding with stops along the captivating Croatian coastline. The itinerary offers a day in Kotor, Montenegro, renowned for hosting one of Europe's most breathtaking harbors, enveloped by towering mountains. Taormina in Sicily boasts historic charm and captivating vistas, perched on the shoulders of Mount Etna. The journey continues along Italy's western coast, punctuated by visits to smaller ports such as Ponza and Palmarola, before culminating in Rome.
For over two decades, Star Clippers has been an ambassador of modern tall ship sailing, offering travelers access to remote ports across the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Indonesia, and the Far East. The company operates three of the world's largest and tallest sailing vessels: Star Clipper and Star Flyer, traditional clipper ships equipped with modern comforts and accommodating 170 guests; and the Royal Clipper, an awe-inspiring five-masted, full-rigged sailing ship that can host up to 227 guests, holding the prestigious Guinness World Record for its unique stature. All three vessels feature extensive teak decks, swimming pools, relaxed dining venues, convivial tropical bars on deck, and inviting piano lounges.
Star Clippers related cruise news
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