Antarctica Inside Scoop: Luxury Living Aboard Hebridean Sky
Here she is from the outside:
But what is it like aboard Hebridean Sky? Hopefully my photos will give you an idea of the luxury of her accommodations and common areas, which were far more comfortable and spacious than I had imagined. And when I first showed these photos to Dag he was astonished – some years ago he went to the Antarctic on a former Russian research ship, which by comparison was very spartan. Understandably he was jealous! Read on….
First off, through the central lobby (look at all that brass! It’s as shiny as that throughout the ship)…
to my Promenade suite on the 4th level deck.
I walked in to find my Polar Latitudes jacket, which of course I had to try on immediately.
There were lots of other goodies, including wine and chocolates. And there was so much storage space, including a walk in closet big enough to house a stowaway – I ran out of things to store!
When I popped back in later, our lovely housekeeper had turned down our beds.
With more chocolates on the pillow, of course! (As you’ll see in the picture, I ate mine straightaway).
I’m acquainted with the tiny bathrooms on many ships, and trust me, our en suite wasn’t one of those.
It had a spacious walk in shower with oodles of hot water, loads of fluffy towels and lots of bathroom ‘goodies’ – luxury!
All the suites are lovely (I checked every one of them), but if you want to push the boat out (excuse the pun) you can opt for the fabulous Owner’s Suite…
which has a big private balcony!
On the same floor as my suite was the lounge area with coffee and tea making facilities and a bar.
Beyond it, an airy and quiet library with a great selection of books on Antarctica.
One deck below was the huge meeting room where we would gather for presentations…
and, on this first day, for our meet and greet with the captain and crew.
And down again to the dining room, where three times a day lovely meals were served, both plated and buffet style.
Like all the other common areas, a convivial space!
And oh what a treat – al fresco lunchtime dining when the weather allowed!
Of course there are deck areas, but you’ll be seeing those on future posts because that’s where our enroute wildlife (and iceberg) watching happened. Next up however: I’ll be telling you how I dressed for our Antarctic excursions and what equipment I brought.
Until then, for more details on our trips, visit http://www.hiddenplaces.net/antarctic-expeditions/
Which suite should you book?
There are eight different types of suites on Hebridean Sky, spread out across 5 decks. All of them can have twin or double beds. If you are a single traveller, you can opt for one of the suites and a ‘roomie’ of the same gender will be matched up with you. If you require single accommodation you can either purchase a single supplement to have the suite of your choice to yourself, or opt for one of the two small single suites.
All the suites are beautifully appointed with sofas, work desks (although please don’t work on the trip!) en suite bathrooms and tons of wardrobe and storage space.
If you have motion sickness issues, it would be best to request a suite in the centre of the ship. We can advise you on this.
Now for the suites – let’s start at the top:
- Owner’s Suite: 385 sq. ft. of luxury, with a private sitting room and a 110 sq. ft. balcony accessed by floor to ceiling sliding glass doors. Romantic perfection. If there is any way – book it!
- Penthouse Suites: 325 sq. ft. with an 80 sq. ft. balcony. Like the Owner’s suite, big sliding doors open onto the balcony and give a great view of the amazing landscapes.
- Veranda Suites: 260 sq. ft. with a 40 sq. ft. balcony. These also have floor to ceiling sliding glass doors, which are a lovely feature. There is nothing like waking at sunrise and stepping onto your balcony to watch an iceberg float by or a whale spy hop.
- Promenade Suites: 220 sq. ft. These suites each have a large picture window that looks onto the port or aft decks (and beyond to the ocean and landscapes). You sometimes see people walking by, but as the window has one-way visibility glass they can’t see in to you. I shared one of these suites with a new travel mate, and we had loads of room.
- Deluxe Suites: 240 sq. These have two large picture windows, one looking onto the side deck and one out to the bow. This is a great feature, but be aware that during long crossings the bow facing windows are covered up from the outside.
- Window Suites: 225 sq. feet. A bit smaller than those on Deck 4, and the same situation with the bow facing windows.
- Triple Suites: 225 sq. ft. These are the most affordable cabins. They are best for a group of three who know each other, or passengers who don’t mind sharing at closer quarters. One area of the cabin has a fairly low ceiling and is only suitable for someone 5’ 10” or less in height.
- Porthole Suites: 240 sq. feet. These each have two smaller windows, but they are quite spacious.
The bottom line: ALL the suites are lovely – you can’t go wrong! But we’ll be happy to discuss the options with you in detail, so that you make the right choice.