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Wind Star

Windstar Cruises History

Now known for a splashy "180º From Ordinary" tag line, Seattle-based Windstar Cruises – owned by Holland America Line under the Carnival Corporation portfolio – first made waves in the mid-1980s as a radical alternative to typical cruising. Passengers aboard Windstar vessels see the world from under billowing sails with cushy accommodations, exquisite cuisine, and attentive service, all combining for casual yet elegant sojourns at sea. Avoiding hackneyed routes and itineraries, Windstar’s sleek ships sail to exotic locales and hidden harbors that larger vessels often can’t access. And wherever they go, Windstar sailing vessels turn heads -- from the Caribbean, Europe, and Far East to the South Pacific. Pages of Windstar history started unfolding in 1986 when Wind Star, the first commercial sailing vessel built in 60 years, slipped out of a French dry-dock in Le Havre. Towering sails echoed a bygone era of exploration, yet the msy Wind Star was revolutionary in concept with computerized controls. Windstar ships are officially masted-sail-yachts (msy), although the designation belies the rigging. Unfurling in two minutes at the push of a button, white sails head quickly for the sky, snapping smartly in the breeze. An "open-bridge" operation allows passengers to drop by at a whim to watch officers demonstrate ship capabilities and sailing functions operated by computer micro-chips and navigational devices. The 148-passenger Wind Star was joined by sister ships the msy Wind Song in 1987, and msy Wind Spirit in 1988. A decade later, the 308-passenger msy Wind Surf was acquired by Windstar. Originally sailing as the Club Med I, Wind Surf was built in 1990 in the same shipyard to similar specifications as Windstar’s smaller ships. Among the line’s original three vessels, Wind Song was retired in January, 2003. Carrying from 148 to 308 guests, Windstar’s four- and five-masted ships provide a private yacht-like atmosphere creating camaraderie and sometimes lasting friendships among fellow sailors. Windstar vessels cruise to nearly 50 nations, calling at more than 100 ports throughout Europe, the Caribbean and Tahiti.

Quick View

In 2004, the 148-passenger Wind Star continues year-round adventure in Tahiti with its trademark voyages through the famed Society Islands, making 46 voyages of 7-days that begin and end in Papeete and call on renowned islands of Bora Bora, Moorea, Huahine and Raiatea. Overnight stays in Bora Bora, Moorea and Papeete allow passengers to experience lingering sunsets, nightlife and around-the-clock atmosphere. For truly exotic South Pacific sailing, the ship embarks from Papeete in June and September on 14-day voyages to the remote Marquesan islands of Fatu Hiva and Hiva Oa, among others, as well as stopping at the Tuamotu group island of Rangiroa on one of the world’s largest natural lagoons.

Fast Facts

Year entering service: 1986
Registry: The Bahamas
Tonnage (GRT): 5,350
Cruising Speed: 8.5 to 10 knots, engines only; up to 14 knots wind/engine
Capacity: 148
Decks: 4
Crew: 88
Officer Nationality: European
Cruise / Hotel Staff Nationality: American, Indonesian, Filipino
Destinations: South Pacific

About Gratuities
A “tipping not required” policy remains in place, although passengers are welcome to extend gratuities for beyond extraordinary service.

Disabled Access
Wind Star and sister Wind Spirit are not equipped with passenger elevators.

Ship Features

Teak decking, eclectic artwork, wood-trimmed interiors, an attentive service staff, intimate surroundings, exceptional signature cuisine featuring both light and vegetarian menu selections, and an extensive wine list are among elements synonymous with Windstar’s Wind Star, built at the Sociéte Nouvelle de Ateliers et Chantiers du Havre. Four masts at 204 feet have six triangular, self-furling, computer operated sails with 21,500 square feet of Dacron surface area. The ship’s beam is 52.1 feet and the length is 360 feet at water line, and 440 feet at bowsprit. The draft is 14 feet. Also aboard for smooth sailing are two sets of stabilizers, a sails control system and a seawater hydraulic ballast system to limit heel. There are three diesel electric generating sets, and one electrical propulsion motor.

The 73 deluxe ocean-view staterooms are 188 square feet, and the owner’s cabin, with a dining/sitting area is 220 square feet. Some cabins have adjoining doors, and some accommodate third berths with upper fold-down pullmans.

Stateroom amenities
Windstar ranks as the first cruise line offering plasma screen TVs fleetwide in all guest quarters and public spaces. Other stateroom amenities include Videocassette and CD players, personal safe, mini-bar/refrigerator, international direct- dial phones, private baths with shower toiletries, hair dryer, plush robes, and roomy closets. Each stateroom has one standard U.S. 110 and European 220 volt (converter recommended), 60 cycle AC electric outlets.

Kid & Teen Stuff
There is no set teen or children’s program.

Cruises Specials

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Life Aboard

The 148-seat Restaurant accommodates all Windstar guests at one sitting with no assigned seating. Renowned chef Joachim Splichal of the Patina Group in Los Angeles creates menus. Jeanne Jones develops Sail Light and vegetarian cuisine. The 80-seat Veranda and its adjacent 40-seat Terrace serve breakfast and lunch, while continental breakfast and afternoon tea are served on the Pool Deck. There is also 24-hour room service.

Sports / Health / Fitness
A salt-water pool, hot tub, fitness center, sauna and a salon for pampering including massage and hairdressing is on board. A sports program includes complimentary water-skiing, windsurfing, kayaking, sail boating, “banana” boating, snorkeling and snorkel gear. Passengers can check out equipment for duration of their sail. Scuba diving for certified divers carries a per tank fee.

The library on board stocks newspapers, books and games, as well as video titles and compact discs for complimentary check-out. There’s also a Signature Shop and e-mail availability. The Veranda, lounge and library can be requested for private meetings and cocktail receptions.

A casino accommodating up to 35 awaits passengers seeking to try their luck.

The Skylight Lounge and the Pool Bar and deck area each seat 148.


Cruise Pricing: Click Here.

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