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HelloSydney

Trying to decide between Star Clipper's Royal Clipper and Windstar's Windsurf for New

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HI all. I don't often lost mainly just read the various feeds, but I'm hoping for some advice and answers. My wife and I are looking for something different for a New Years Cruise. Windstar and Star Clipper both have cruises departing Dec 29, Windsurf from St. Maarten and Royal Clipper from Barbados. We have previously cruised on NCL, Disney, RCI and HA, each has been enjoyable but we're to try a new adventure. We understand the difference between the 2 vessels, sail vs motor/sail, but are looking for a bit more info. If anyone has tried both and can give some comparison it would be appreciated.

 

Things we would like to know are:

- fellow passengers - as first timers on the ship will we feel like outsiders? Do the repeat passengers tend to stick together or are they welcoming of newcomers?

- meals - due to severe allergies to food preservatives of my wife, how able are the 2 ships able to accommodate special meals? All cruises we have been on say they can accommodate and we spend considerable time in advance providing as much info to them, but even then we have had cross contamination issues or well-meaning chefs try to enhance the meal only to result in an allergic reaction

- any other advice or comments you feel might help us make a decision, we are both late 50's relatively active who aren't afraid of a challenge

 

Thanks to all who might reply. I do plan to also post on the Star Clipper forum.

 

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We have sailed both. We enjoyed both.

We ended up on Star Clippers for a Greek sail because the Windstar ships were fully booked by the time we got around to making reservations. Since that first Star Clippers cruise, we have not been back to Windstar. As this is the Star Clippers' board, my input may be just a little biased.;)

Windstar, while definitely not a mega-ship cruise ship, is still more like a traditional cruise than Star Clippers. Multiple restaurants and such. Still a wonderful experience just a bit more "posh" than Star Clippers.

Star Clippers just naturally encourage interaction by the passengers. The meal seatings are always "open" and they do their best to seat you with those who speak the same language. Repeat cruisers, in our experience, always give a hand or a bit of advice to first timers and welcome them into the "club."

Star Clippers guests tend to be adventurous and always have a story to tell. We have always met wonderful people aboard and can't wait for our next sail.

I can not speak to meal/food allergy issues. I believe both will go out of their way to accommodate their guest's limitations. Star Clippers only has one dining room and breakfast and lunch are buffet style with the lunch typically themed in some manner.

I don't know if that helps any. I can say there is nothing like a star lit night under sail with no motor running with the resulting vibration and noise. Sitting behind the bridge with a nice beverage.

Star Clippers has an open bridge policy. When we were on Windstar they did not. Maybe they do now.

But in the end you can't go wrong with either one.

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I have a post over on the Windstar page. I think habenicd has it about right. They clearly have a preference and a true adventure sailor would. Personally I think it is a tad more 'each has a spot in my heart' for me and a slightly different application. Love them both.

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Okay Sydney, I'm going to actually make a recommendation about what I would do. Obviously I don't know you so please give me latitude. The BVIs are a sailor's paradise. Your NYE cruise there is on a Windstar ship. Personally I'd do that on a Star Clipper ship. Your Barbados run on the Royal is the northern Windwards route. If you choose that please be prepared for some meaningful sailing as you get all the way up into the Leewards. Pretty long haul stuff not always in sheltered waters although her somewhat larger size will help. You might also consider the Leewards route on the Star Clipper out of St. Maarten. Personally that's the route of the 3 that I would choose if all were new to me.

 

Best of luck with your decision. Whatever you decide will be a wonderful adventure.

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Jsglow thanks for the input, I read both your post on the windstar forum and here and they have been very helpful. We haven't done the BVI'S but many years ago did some of the islands on the Royal Clipper itinerary. Just need to decide do we want a little pampering or not.

 

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I have a post over on the Windstar page. I think habenicd has it about right. They clearly have a preference and a true adventure sailor would. Personally I think it is a tad more 'each has a spot in my heart' for me and a slightly different application. Love them both.

 

 

I read your post over on the Windstar Board. You are absolutely spot on in your analysis.

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Let us know what you decide Sydney. All your options are very good. Enjoy.

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Jsglow thanks for the input, I read both your post on the windstar forum and here and they have been very helpful. We haven't done the BVI'S but many years ago did some of the islands on the Royal Clipper itinerary. Just need to decide do we want a little pampering or not.

 

Sent from my SM-T800 using Tapatalk

 

Well, I will say that I absolutely LOVE the BVIs. I've not yet done the Grenadines but anticipate that'll be our next Clipper cruise.

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