Windstar Cruises has begun the process of “stretching” the first of three ships, Star Breeze, in order to insert a new 84ft mid-section that will transform the small-ship experience.
Sister ships Star Legend and Star Pride will then follow as part of Windstar Cruises’ $250 million Star Plus Initiative, which is committed to the expansion and transformation of the cruise line’s three Star-class vessels.
Once revamped, Star Breeze will be able to accommodate 321 passengers (previously 212 guests) with 50 new suites on board, and will also welcome two new restaurants, including the Spanish style Cuadro 44 by Anthony Sasso, and the contemporary, alfresco Star Grill by Steven Raichlen.
Along with this, the engines will be removed and replaced with more environmentally-friendly engines.
“The $250 Million Star Plus Initiative is the most complex and comprehensive small ship lengthening, engine replacement, and renovation project undertaken in cruising, and we are very proud to be working with Fincantieri, the leader in major cruise ship renovations,” said Windstar Cruises president John Delaney.
“The slightly larger ships and new enhancements will significantly build upon the signature onboard environment Windstar is famous for. The social and friendly public spaces on the ships create a welcome chemistry with guests and the crew.”
That enhanced deck space will also welcome a new pool and whirlpool on the upper deck, a re-imagined, world-class spa and fitness centre, a new retail shop, and more.
Vice president of Fleet Operations for Windstar Cruises, Christopher Prelog, said: “This is a momentous undertaking for Windstar and a major milestone. Thanks to our partners at Fincantieri, we are literally witnessing the evolution of a cruise line.
“Star Breeze and her sister ships have always been coveted for their beauty, pleasing lines, and cozy yet seemingly spacious environments. The significant investment and the transformation of these ships will be stunning, and we are all eager for our guests to experience the renaissance of Windstar Cruises.”
The second ship to undergo the transformation, Star Legend, will debut in Barcelona on 2 July 2020. The third and final ship, Star Pride, will be complete with the departure of Star Pride from the shipyard in the autumn, with her first cruise sailing from Barcelona on 20 November 2020.
Reservations are open for 2020 and 2021 cruises aboard the renovated Star Breeze, Star Legend, and Star Pride, including a Colours of Key West & Central America 10-day voyage from Miami to Colón, Panama on 20 March 2020. Sailing from Miami will be a first for the Seattle-based company.
For more information, visit windstarcruises.com.