On 15 May, 2015 I had the chance to visit Voyages of Discovery’s Voyager whilst the ship was berthed alongside the cruise terminal at Harwich International Port during a turnaround call.
Joining me on the visit was our Cruise Ambassador, Jordan Bailey. We arrived at the cruise terminal at approximately 11:40. We had been told we could board the ship from 12:00, so arrived a little early to take a few photos of the ship before we boarded and to allow time to get our passes and any hold ups or problems in the cruise terminal. Thankfully we did not encounter any problems. The cruise terminal was very quiet and we got our passes almost straight away. We made our way through security and along the gangway and boarded the ship.
Upon boarding we were met by the Food and Beverage Manager and the Senior Host, we chatted for a short whilst before the Head of Housekeeping came to meet us as we had asked to see some of the cabins.
Jordan and I were escorted up from the Discovery Deck to Bridge Deck, where our guided tour began. On this deck we got to take a look at the two highest categories of cabins on board Voyager. First we explored one of the eight Balcony Suites with Spa Bath. All of these suites cover more than 300sq ft. These suites offer a spacious sitting room, balcony, bathroom with jacuzzi bath, flatscreen television, bathrobes and slippers, champagne on arrival, fruit basket and flowers, daily canapés and the option of chauffeur service. Next we were shown one of the two Owners Suites on board. These suites are located right behind the bridge and are approximately 342 sq ft in size.
Moving down to the Promenade Deck we were given the opportunity to view some of the other types of cabins on board. First off we took a look at one of the twenty Balcony Suites. These are somewhat smaller at around 216 sq ft but still feel very spacious. Next we saw one of the Inside – Deluxe cabins. There are three different types of inside cabins, standard, premium and deluxe. What’s strange is that the standard inside cabins is the largest at a minimum of 142 sq ft, whilst the deluxe cover 124 sq ft. However the deluxe cabin comes with the added benefits that some of the suites have to offer, such as champagne on arrival and bathrobes and slippers.
Lastly we were shown two of the five Junior Suites, all of which are located at the forward end of the Promenade Deck, offering views over the ship’s bow, with the bridge directly above. As a result guests are asked to keep their curtains closed after dark for navigational safety. At a minimum of 257 sq ft the Junior Suites are larger than the adjacent Balcony Suites, but do not come with a balcony.
After being shown the cabins and suites by the Head of Housekeeping, we continued our guided tour with the Food & Beverage Manager and Senior Host. We moved back up to Bridge Deck, where we saw the pool area. For a ship of Voyager’s size the pool is a good size, although circular. Two hot tubs and the Lido Bar are located next to the pool area and there’s plenty of poolside seating. There are no deck chairs for sunbathing on this deck. Sunbathing is on the very top deck, Sun Deck, which we did not get to see on this visit.
On the Sun Deck, we got to take a look at the Sunset Lounge, which is used for a variety of functions including arts and crafts workshops, live cabarets, late night dancing and hosted party events. This is somewhat of a small lounge area, with a bar and small dance floor in the middle. The Fitness Centre is also located on this deck, which is fairly small and has a limited number of machines, however it does offer views either side and over the stern too.
Located directly below the gym on Bridge Deck is the Veranda Restaurant, a casual buffet style venues and one of just two restaurants on board. If the weather is good you can choose to dine al fresco in the sun overlooking the stern of the ship. There is awning overhead the outside seating should the weather not be so good.
Moving down just two decks to the Discovery Deck we had a look at the Discovery Restaurant, which is the main restaurant on board Voyager. The restaurant may seem small in comparison to the larger ships, but mirrors at either end make it seem much larger. Although small in size the restaurant did seem quite spacious which enough room between tables and chairs, compared to some of the cramped venues on other ships again. The two restaurants on board operate as open dining so you can choose when and where you eat, as well as who you enjoy your dinner with.
Located starboard side next to the Discovery Restaurant is the Library which offers comfortable seating and flows through to the laid back Scott’s Lounge. Here you can relax with friends and enjoy speciality coffees, cocktails, listen to the pianist or classical duo or take part in the early evening quiz. This venue is the hub of the ship and is the largest lounge on board.
We continued forward on the Discovery Deck, moving into the Darwin Lounge, a comfortable theatre area on board which is used for a variety of functions throughout the day, including live shows, live band and dance, cinema presentations, guest speakers, dance classes and Aerobic and Zumba classes. To improve the functionality of the lounge, during a recent refurbishment of the ship, a small partition corridor was added to the starboard side of the lounge, to allow guests to walk through without disturbing other passengers.
The Lookout Lounge is located at the forward end of the Discovery Deck, and provides a relaxing environment. Like many of the other lounges on board, it is used for a number of different functions, such as quizzes, game competitions and live demonstrations. In addition, there are four computers located in the corner of the lounge.
Lastly we were guided down to the Livingstone Deck, which is home to Reception and Shore Excursions. The Senior Host picked up and copy of the ships daily programme for both myself and Jordan before escorting us back to the Discovery Deck where we boarded the ship.
Before disembarking the ship I took the opportunity to have a photograph taken with both the Senior Host and Food & Beverage Manager and thanked each of them for taking the time to guide us around Voyager. Although we were on board for less than an hour, Jordan and I were able to see most of the passenger amenities on board.
Overall, Voyager is a lovely little ship, with a very stylish and modern look. With no more than 540 passengers on board the ship offers a good choice of amenities and has a relaxing and welcoming feel throughout.