Azamara Club Cruises isn’t your average cruise line and the Azamara Journey isn’t your average cruise ship. She’s a true beauty on the high seas, seemingly larger than life, but small enough to dock in hard-to-reach ports. Utterly grand, yet accessible and relaxed, she’s the perfect place to call home on an unforgettable journey on the open seas. Here’s what you can expect.
- 180 metres long and 25 metres wide
- 690 guests
- 408 international crew members
- Eight guest decks
- Six dining venues, including two speciality restaurants
- 345 Staterooms, with 46 Club Suites
- 200 Club Veranda, 73 Club Oceanview and 26 Club Interior Staterooms
Azamara Journey is the cruise ship for non-cruisers. She’s a luxurious and newly refurbished mid-sized ship with the grandeur of a large vessel and the feel of an elegant boutique hotel. She’s the ship for those that enjoy the finer things in life who may have previously discounted cruising as nothing more than a floating hotel full of thousands of people, waterslides and bland buffets. Azamara Journey is anything but an ordinary cruise ship.
Having undergone a total refurbishment in 2016 guided by the four elements of nature – earth, water, air and fire – the Azamara Journey has been extensively upgraded with passengers in mind, where every detail has been carefully considered. Muted colour palettes throughout create a serene sense of home, and with just under 700 guests, you’ll never once feel crowded. In fact, the ship’s intimate size creates the perfect balance for socialising and ‘you’ time.
Cruising and cuisine go hand in hand, and the Azamara Journey is far from exception. On board is a carefully curated selection of six dining venues.
For snacks and barista coffee, Mosaic Cafe and Mosaic @Night offer a quiet space to take five, while casual meals inspired by regional flavours are served al fresco at The Patio and Windows Cafe. Not to mention, you can also take advantage of a help-yourself froyo bar!
Discoveries Restaurant is the culinary heart of the ship, and is a place where you can dine when you want and with whoever you want. Choose to rendezvous with your partner over a filet mignon with black truffle sauce, or savour local specialities with a large group of new friends.
For those looking for something a bit more special, Azamara Journey features two specialty restaurants: Aqualina and Prime C. Aqualina serves classic and innovative Italian dishes, while diners can expect a mouth-watering range of made-to-order cuts of steak and indulgent desserts at Prime C. These two specialty dining rooms incur a reasonable per-person cover charge, although suite guests enjoy complimentary dining.
Discerning cuisine wouldn’t be complete without the appropriate tipple or two, and unlike other cruise lines, your cruise fare includes drinks; yes, that means soft drinks and a unique selection of wine and house spirits can be enjoyed anytime at your discretion.
A Suite Stay
Azamara Journey’s staterooms are more than just a place to lay your head. The luxe life extends into elegant cocoons reminiscent of boutique hotel rooms. No matter which room type you choose, you can expect luxurious linens, terry bathrobes, 24-hour room service, fresh flowers and turndown treats.
You can, of course, amp up your overnight experience in a suite. Think of the Club Suites like luxurious holiday homes, complete with ocean views from your own private balcony. Here, you can spend time watching the world go by, stargazing or enjoying a bite to eat, complemented by a selection of speciality spirits from your minibar.
Azamara Journey’s selection of suite accommodation unlocks a whole slew of onboard bonuses, including butler service, free laundry once a week, free dining at the specialty restaurants, Aqualina and Prime C, and often, a shore excursion or two on a first come, first served basis.
With no waterslides or skating rinks on board, Azamara Journey offers the kind of fun akin to a grown-up getaway.
Of course, what holiday would be complete without a little pampering, and The Sanctum Spa offers a seemingly endless list of ways to pamper and preen. Recent upgrades include the addition of rain showers with ocean views, as well as an outdoor area with a Thalassotherapy spa, which can be booked for private dinners for two.
More sedentary daily activities come in the form of trivia competitions, bridge sessions, cooking demos and special interest lectures by guest speakers. Those seeking a bit more action – if they’re not ashore exploring – can join dance lessons, ping-pong tournaments or shuffleboard, have a flutter at the casino, or simply make a splash in one of the open-air pools.
Ballroom dancing kicks off in the afternoon in the Cabaret Lounge, followed up by a rotating roster of live music across various onboard bars, before the curtain rises at the theatre. And you can leave your ball gowns and bow ties at home – the ship’s dress code is ‘resort casual’.
The Destination Focus
The Azamara experience is all about seeing more, doing more and experiencing more – all in absolute comfort and style, of course. Every itinerary includes longer – and often overnight – stays in port, so you can really delve into the heart and soul of a destination – much of which comes to life after the sun sets under bright city lights and down rambunctious laneways.
The ship’s smaller size means it can also dock in hard-to-reach ports, like in the heart of Bangkok or a short walk from the centre of Bordeaux, so you can maximise your sightseeing time.
Also included on each itinerary is the cruise line’s signature AzAmazing Evenings. These complimentary shore excursions tap into Azamara’s Destination Immersion ethos, which create further connections with the destinations you visit, and there’s one included on every cruise, except transatlantic crossings and itineraries under seven nights.
Each bespoke event is exclusive to Azamara guests, so you could find yourself at a private James Morrison concert (on a recent stop in Brisbane), an opulent night out at the St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra or an indigenous ceremonial dance performance at a hacienda in the foothills of the Sierra Madres in Mexico.
Azamara Journey will return Down Under for a second season in January 2018. She’ll offer four local sailings during her season, including a brand new 18-night Bali to Sydney voyage via the West Coast of Australia, departing January 21, 2018.
This unique sailing offers maiden calls to Exmouth, Perth, Bunbury, Albany, Esperance, Kangaroo Island and Adelaide. Azamara Journey will also offer a 14-night Sydney to Auckland sailing, a 13-night Auckland to Sydney voyage and an 18-night Sydney to Singapore itinerary, which includes a call to Brisbane on March 9, 2018.