Seabourn To Make First-Ever Visits To Cuba Beginning In Late 2019, Visiting Unique Destinations On Four Distinct Itineraries
SEATTLE, August 9, 2018 – Seabourn, the world’s finest ultra-luxury cruise line, has received approval to begin sailing to Cuba from Miami and San Juan, Puerto Rico, starting with a 12-day cruise aboard Seabourn Sojourn departing Miami on November 4, 2019. Seabourn becomes Carnival Corporation’s third cruise brand currently approved to sail to Cuba.
Bookings for Seabourn’s cruises to Cuba open today. Guests can choose from four separate itineraries with five different departure dates. The addition of Seabourn’s sailings will help meet the growing demand for luxury travel experiences to Cuba.
The 11-, 12-, and 14-day sailings will visit five ports in Cuba, calling at three or four on each itinerary and providing guests the ideal opportunity to discover the different regions on this vast island. All five voyages will feature overnight stops in the historic capital city Havana, offering travelers ample opportunity to see and experience this vibrant destination. The visit to Havana allows guests time to explore the designated UNESCO World Heritage Site during its 500th anniversary year and immerse themselves in a wide array of historical and cultural experiences.
“For many luxury travelers, they aim to find new places to explore and discover meaningful new cultural opportunities, and Cuba is one of the most sought-after emerging destinations for many of our guests,” said Richard Meadows, president of Seabourn. “We are excited to finally be able to include Cuba in our itineraries, and our guests and travel partners have been anxiously awaiting an ultra-luxury travel experience with a wider selection of destinations in this relatively undiscovered Caribbean treasure. These Cuba itineraries are fresh and sure to satisfy the curiosity of anyone who has considered visiting.”
Seabourn Sojourn will call at five fascinating ports in Cuba throughout the season, offering ample opportunities for guests to discover history and culture, as well as several UNESCO World Heritage Sites:
· Antilla (Nipe Bay) – The entry to the deep-cut Nipe Bay passes by the Cayo Saetia National Park, a natural reservation with wide flora diversity and exotic fauna. The Holguin province offers authentic Cuban communities like San Isidoro de Holguin itself, with 18th-century churches and sleepy plazas. The Sierra del Cristal range holds lush pine forests and Pico Cristal and Mensura national parks with the twin Guayabo waterfalls, Cuba’s highest.
· Cienfuegos – One of the later colonial cities of Cuba, Cienfuegos was founded by French nationals in 1819, yet it is inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its remarkable concentration of 19th century architecture. The Jagua Castle at the entrance to the bay actually predates the city, erected in 1745 to protect ships from pirates. An overnight stay allows exploration of the city’s highlights, as well as cultural experiences and a visit to the colonial town of Trinidad, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
· Havana (La Habana) – Visit Cuba’s vivacious capital during its 500th anniversary in 2019. An overnight stay in the city offers ample opportunities to experience its history and enjoy the thriving music, dance and graphic arts scenes, as well connecting with artists, dancers and community projects. A highlight is Old Havana and its Fortification System, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Havana invites guests to tour 16th-century plazas and Art Deco treasures in lovingly preserved vintage American cars from the 50s and 60s.
· Punta Francés, Isla de Juventud – This idyllic island is the second largest in Cuba, where Cuban vacationers snorkel and dive on coral reefs and shipwrecks in the National Marine Park. A hidden gem off the coast of Cuba, the island was once a pirate hideout. Now it supports farms dedicated to breeding sea turtles and crocodiles. The Punta del Este Caves are the “Sistine Chapel” of prehistoric Taino petroglyphs.
· Santiago de Cuba – Founded in 1515, Cuba’s cultural capital is filled with monuments of its colonial and revolutionary history, including UNESCO World Heritage Site San Pedro de la Roca Castle. Santiago will reward a two-day stay with highlights including its cathedrals and the museums of the Moncada Barracks, the Velazquez House, the Lucha Clandestina museum and the neighboring community of El Cobre and its Basilica de la Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre. It is also the wellspring of all styles of Cuban music.
While off the ship, guests may join UNESCO Partner Tours exploring Cuba’s World Heritage cities including Santa Clara and Trinidad, the Biosphere Reserve at Las Terrazas, plus participatory excursions both by day and by night, tracing the Cuban culinary, musical and artistic heritage and including meetings with arts and community projects in Havana, Santiago and Cienfuegos. Additionally, a stop at Cienfuegos presents the opportunity for a special visit to the colonial town of Trinidad, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Cuba’s province of Sancti Spíritus. In addition, guests can enjoy several complimentary Seabourn special events and experiences, such as Caviar in the Surf®* beach barbecues in Isla Catalina and Carambola Beach, as well as Marina Day with complimentary watersports in Isla Catalina operating directly from the back of the ship, weather and conditions permitting.
Specific port details of the Cuba itineraries include:
· November 4, 2019, 12-day roundtrip from Miami, includes stops in Havana, Cuba (overnight); Antilla (Nipe Bay), Cuba; Santiago de Cuba (overnight); Port Antonio, Jamaica; West End, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands; and Cienfuegos, Cuba (overnight).
· November 16 & 28, 2019, 12-day Miami to Miami, includes stops in Cienfuegos, Cuba (overnight); West End, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands; Port Antonio, Jamaica; Santiago de Cuba, Cuba (overnight); Antilla (Nipe Bay), Cuba, and Havana, Cuba (overnight).
· December 10, 2019, 11-day Miami to San Juan, Puerto Rico, includes stops in Havana (La Habana), Cuba (overnight); Punta Frances, Isla de la Juventud, Cuba; Cienfuegos, Cuba; West End, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands; Port Antonio, Jamaica; Santiago de Cuba (overnight); and Isla Catalina, Dominican Republic.
· December 21, 2019, 14-day San Juan, Puerto Rico to Miami, includes stops at Gustavia, St. Barthelemy; St. John’s, Antigua, Antigua & Barbuda; Carambola Beach, St. Kitts & Nevis; Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Port Antonio, Jamaica; Santiago de Cuba, Cuba (overnight); Antilla (Nipe Bay), Cuba; and Havana, Cuba (overnight).
The deployment of the 458-guest Seabourn Sojourn to Cuba adds Seabourn to the historic launch of cruises to the island nation from the U.S. by Carnival Corporation along with sister brands Fathom, Carnival Cruise Line, and Holland America Line.
Seabourn represents the pinnacle of ultra-luxury travel with intimate ships offering key elements that set the line apart: spacious, thoughtfully appointed suites, many with verandas and all 100% ocean front; superb dining in a choice of venues; complimentary premium spirits and fine wines available on board at all times; award-winning service and a relaxed, sociable atmosphere that makes guests feel right at home on board. The ships travel the globe to many of the world’s most desirable destinations, including marquee cities, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and lesser-known ports and hideaways.
Guests who sail on Seabourn will continue to find a number of innovative offerings and programs, including partnerships with a select group of companies and individuals whose dedication to superior quality, exceptional service and consistent customer satisfaction matches Seabourn. These programs include ‘An Evening with Tim Rice’, the new evening entertainment experience created exclusively for the line in association with Belinda King Creative Productions; Spa and Wellness with Dr. Andrew Weil, offering guests a holistic spa and wellness experience that integrates physical, social, environmental and spiritual well-being; and The Grill by Thomas Keller, reminiscent of the classic American restaurant from the 50’s and 60’s. Exclusive to Seabourn, The Grill is a unique culinary concept for Chef Keller, focusing on updated versions of iconic dishes. Guests will be treated to table-side preparations of Caesar salad and ice cream sundaes, as well as a range of other favorites like premium steaks, whole roasted chicken, and Lobster Thermidor, presented à la carte.