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Travel Buzz
Butlers At Sea
By The Affluent Traveler

Your Best Bets for Enjoying Cruising’s Royal Treatments

Disconnecting ourselves from life’s hectic pace aboard a cruise is truly one of travel’s great luxuries. And while sailing away on a well-deserved getaway may give us a chance to sit back and relax, nothing compares to the pleasure of being pampered onboard by your very own private butler.  Though this luxe service comes standard with most first-tier and premium accommodations, a growing number of luxury cruise lines now offer butler service with all onboard cabins and suites. In fact, cruisers now have more choices than ever when it comes to kicking back and having their every beck and call answered by their own butler.

Because butler services aboard cruise lines can vary, it is important to know which type of service you prefer. Perhaps you’re celebrating a wedding anniversary and would like traditional English butler service.  Maybe you have a family and prefer a butler who’s a bit more casual and great with kids.

No matter your preference, a butler’s role is to always provide excellent, seamless service and to accommodate your every request as swiftly as possible.

To help you navigate the many cruise lines offering private butler service, our covert team of experts eagerly took it upon ourselves to uncover an array of standouts worth splurging for. Sure, it was a tough job on our part, but I think you’ll be impressed by the results.

Go Ahead, Live it Up!

Whether it’s assisting with packing and unpacking your luggage, delivering five-course gourmet meals to your suite, drawing a bubble bath or mixing you a martini in-suite, the tasks a butler performs are virtually limitless. On cruise lines such as Celebrity Cruises, Silversea Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Lines and Oceania Cruises, butler service begins upon port arrival where your butler greets you. While most butlers are trained by the cruise line, companies such as Oceania and Celebrity seek to hire school-trained or highly-experienced butlers. As for Silversea Cruises, all butlers for their ships come from the Guild of Professional English Butlers, which provides service to members of royal families throughout the world.

Here are some of the finer details to help you choose the right cruise and service...

Celebrity Cruises

“Absolutely phenomenal!” is what I heard from one recent cruiser when describing Celebrity’s butler service, which is lavished to guests in all of Celebrity’s suites. As a guest, you’ll enjoy assistance with packing and unpacking your luggage, savor full breakfasts, lunch and dinners in-suite (if you prefer). And it only gets better! Suite guests on Celebrity can take indulgence to another level with in suite afternoon tea and evening hors d’oeuvres, all while sipping complimentary espresso and cappuccino from their veranda. Need a shoe shine before dinner? No problem. Just let the butler know. In the mood for a game of Scrabble or chess, perhaps backgammon? Your favorite board game can be delivered on request.

Azamara Club Cruises

Whoever said, “There is a difference between living and living well,” must have taken a voyage with Azamara. Simply put, our experts found Azamara’s service to be in a league all its own. So how does the cruise line, with one staff member for every two guests, up the ante on service?  With their Guild of Professional English Butler certified staff, of course! Make sure you upgrade to a suite so you can experience the lap of luxury as your butler provides you service steeped in years of classical tradition. All of Azamara’s services are offered in-suite, from dining and tea service to spa services and whatever else you may need.

Oceania Cruises

Are you picky about your service when cruising? So are we. But there’s no need to worry when it comes to sailing with Oceania Cruises. Just book an Owner’s, Vistaor Penthouse suite and you’ll experience just what I’m talking about. Oceania selects its butlers from a variety of sources including fine hotels ashore and the ranks of its hotel staff. All are trained in the in-house “Signature Service” program, developed specifically for Oceania by a leading hospitality consultancy for course-by-course en-suite dining, coordinating shore-side dinners and entertainment reservations, complimentary garment pressing and much more.

Silversea Cruises

Meet your very own butler who never says no. Silversea’s butlers are available to facilitate every aspect of a passenger’s cruise experience, including making reservations at onboard alternative restaurants, arranging a private car at the next port, drawing a bubble bath and orchestrating an elegant in-suite cocktail party — and even laundry. Silversea’s butlers hail from the distinguished Guild of Professional English Butlers, so you can rest assured you receive well trained, refined and unobtrusive service throughout your entire cruise. Make sure you reserve a suite to take advantage of the cruise line’s prime service.

Norwegian Cruise Lines 

Butlers on Norweigan’s ships are culled from the rank and file of the hotel department based on their excellent customer service and positive consumer feedback. As a result, the cruise line’s butlers retain a level of warmth and a service ethic that makes cruising an intimate and special experience.  Norweigan’s butlers can help with delivery of flowers, personalized letters and stationary on embarkation day. Along with seeing that all amenities are properly in place, they can set up private cocktail parties en-suite and take food orders from any menu onboard (including those from alternative dining venues). If you have little ones tagging along, Norweigan’s butlers are among the industry’s best when it comes to having fun and fitting right in with the family.

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