“You’ve NEVER been on a cruise before?!”
A look of bewilderment crossed the captains face as he stared at me through his thin-rimmed glasses. It was a refreshing change of pace, being called out for something I’ve never done versus something crazy I had. Over a truffle-topped Wagyu steak at the captains dinner, I explained just how tainted I knew I would inevitably become, being that this luxury yacht in the Seychelles was my first real “cruise” experience.
Visions of sunburnt tourists chain smoking, day drinking well cocktails, and gambling days away at sea flood my mind when I even hear the term cruise. Scarred by tales of inconvenient preplanned agendas, mindless lackluster buffets, and screaming children… it should come as no surprise why cruising was never high up on my bucketlist.
However, a few days into my trip to the Seychelles with fellow travel blogger Kiersten Rich (The Blonde Abroad) she got a call from Crystal Cruises. Kiersten had previously been on a two-week cruise with them over New Years through Brazil, and they informed her that one of their newest yachts would be reaching the Seychelles that coming Saturday. Within the next few hours we were both changing our flights and extending our trip to board the Crystal Espirt yacht leaving out of Mahe Island.
From the second I boarded the yacht, it was clear that this experience would be the perfect combination of modern luxury, premium hospitality, and fully curated experiences. Every room was ocean facing and came with your own personal butler. Nathaniel, my all-smiles butler (who was an absolutely dream, I literally locked myself out of my room like three times.. oops) was there to cater to my every need big or small.
Everyday we woke in a new destination with plenty to explore. In the mornings we would sip mimosas, catch the rays, and plan out our excursions for the day. Afternoons spent jetskiing, snorkeling, hiking, and biking showed us the many sides to these magical islands that were all planned and done at our own pace. The yacht also has its very own 3-person submarine, allowing you to spy on fish and view the variety of corals and marine life all without even getting wet (so epic). Around sunset we would lift anchor and begin our journey onward to the next beautiful spot. We would watch the coastlines of tiny remote islands and inlets pass as the sun changed the sky just before it disappeared for the night.
The food onboard was absolutely unbelievable. Sadly, I’m from New York, with a chef for a father… so it tends to take quite a lot to really impress me. I was completely blown away. A different gourmet menu every night, filled with local dishes, delicacies and the freshest fish caught same day (I mean whats not to love). There is also a gym onboard and daily fitness classes and activities from paddle-boarding pilates to cardio and ab classes, it was honestly the perfect way to make up for all the culinary indulgences explored the night prior.
While this experience is far beyond what I could’ve ever imagined, and truly is the ultimate in luxury cruises… it is honestly a wonderful option for a big event, celebration, or just as a indulging splurge. They have multiple boats in their fleet going to a wide variety of destinations and is without a doubt the future of quality “cruise-culture.”