What Makes Cruising Windstar Cruises Different

If you’ve been on a cruise before you know that not all cruises are the same and neither is the cruise line. We recently went on our first Windstar Cruises trip to the Caribbean, exploring 7 islands in 1 week. We had an amazing time aboard the Wind Surf cruise ship. So what makes cruising with Windstar Cruises different than other cruises?  Here’s what!

What Makes Cruising Windstar Cruises Different

Windstar Wind surf sail with sunburst

Sailing

Most cruise ships don’t sail but cruise using engine power to bring them from port to port. The Windsurf was a hybrid that used a combination of sails and motors to propel the ship. The sails helped the ship stay a little greener and the motors ensured we’d make it to the next port quickly. Aside from the energy conservation, the sails full of wind added to the appeal of the ship. 

Girl watching sunset on a Windstar Cruise

Only 300 passengers

If you don’t want to be on a cruise ship with 1,000+ passengers then Windstar Cruises is for you. They have three sailing yachts which can carry from 148 to 310 guests. We were on the Wind Surf cruise ship which carries 310 passengers. With a smaller amount of passengers, you can really get to mingle with other guests, make new travel friends and never have to worry about lines. Windstar Cruises is the market leader in small ship cruising with 300 or fewer passengers.

girl jumping off the Windsurf

Water Sports Deck

FREE kayaks, stand up paddle boards, snorkel equipment, water skiing, tubing, and a large trampoline to lounge on. If you get back on the boat after an offshore excursion or don’t want to leave the boat, head down to the watersports deck. We’ve never been on a cruise that has FREE water sports like this before.

Suite room on Windstar cruise line on the Windsurf

Rooms

They offer all-suite yachts, where every room on the cruise ship is a suite. On the Wind Surf cruise ship we had a suite, which is HUGE. The suite rooms use to be two rooms, so there are two bathrooms, two desks,  a king-size bed, and a sitting area. We really liked having two bathrooms, saved so much time getting ready. We have been on several cruises and usually the hot water doesn’t last my entire shower, that was never an issue on the Wind Surf.

Suite room on Windstar cruise line on the Windsurf

24 Hour Room Service

Included in everyone’s cruise is 24-hour room service. Some cruise lines this is only available to certain rooms, well that is not the case with Windstar Cruises. We had breakfast in bed every day of our Caribbean cruise. We would call in the order an hour before our offshore excursion and within 30 minutes it was delivered. Some days you get back from a day exploring and you just don’t want to get ready for dinner so order room service.

lobster served on Windstar cruise line Stella restaurant

Top Notch Restaurants

There were two specialty restaurants on the Wind Surf cruise ship, Candles & Stella Bistro. It’s hard to decide which was our favorite. Candles is steakhouse located outside on the top deck with tables lit by Candles, hence the name. The menu includes filet mignon, lamb chops, seafood specialties, and more. We suggest pairing your meal with a bottle of wine, the wines are super affordable starting at $26 a bottle. We are guilty of sharing a bottle of wine with our meals. 

Filet mignon on Windstar Cruise line at Candles restaurant

Stella Bistro is a French restaurant that will not disappoint. The menu includes escargot, lobster bisque, scallops, roast duck, filet mignon, and more. We had heard the scallops & escargot were amazing so that’s what Adam went with and agreed the scallops were awesome. Oh and the Creme Brule is the best way to end an amazing meal.

Reservations are required at Candles & Stella. We suggest you make them early on during your cruise. We hadn’t met anyone that didn’t get a chance to dine at each of them at least once. Our first night on the ship we dined at Candles and were able to get another reservation the last night.

Outdoor Caribbean BBQ on Windstar cruise line

The Staff

Sure it sounds cliche to say the staff but honestly, the Windstar staff is amazing. Our cabin attendant Dani knew both of our names before the end of day 1. He’d pass us in the halls and call us by our names asking how our day was and if we needed anything. We loved chatting with him about his home country Indonesia and all of his favorite things to do in Bali. The staff throughout the ship was great, I still remember the captain shaking martinis at the BBQ.

Aerial photo of Guadloupe on a Windstar cruise line trip

Destinations

Windstar Cruises goes to ports and destinations larger ships are unable to. We loved our Caribbean island hopping route, there were no other cruise ships at Barbuda. We had the entire beach to ourselves, we walked to miles and miles on the gorgeous pink sand beaches. Windstar currently cruises to 59 nations and pulling into 173 ports from Europe, South Pacific, Caribbean and Central America. New cruise itineraries are coming at the end of 2017 to Asia and Arabi. We can’t wait to set sail with them again, we have our eye on their Tahiti cruises. 

**We were guests of Windstar Cruises but as always all opinions are our own**
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