Why Cordelia Cruises are the best cruises for family travel

It seemed like a dream. The moonbeam stroked the waves, adding a tinge of silver to the dark night. The lusty winds and the roaring waves echoed each other. The jewelled sky looked down at us. Standing on the deck, I was lost, gazing at the wild waves that scattered the moonlight, spreading a sheath of silvery foam everywhere. And as the waves ebbed and flowed, I felt a gentle rocking motion as the familiar shore receded from my view only to be replaced by the grey oceans surrounding me. I was on the 11th deck of the “City On the Sea, ” the luxury Cordelia cruise ship called the Empress, which had sailed all over the world with the Royal Caribbean fleet. And the vessel is now spearheading India’s growth as a cruise destination with Cordelia Cruises and it is one of the best cruises for families and friends,

Pic Courtesy – Karthik Murali

After sailing the Arabian Sea, cruising through destinations like Mumbai, Goa, Kochi and Lakshwadeep, the Cordelia cruise ship was on a maiden cruise on the Bay of Bengal, voyaging from Visakhapatnam or Vizag to Chennai. I had been on river cruises before, but this was my first experience on a luxury cruise ship, sailing across the oceans for a three-night, four-day voyage. As the moon shone bright and the gusty winds slapped my face, the ship rocked and rolled and me along with it. The music struck a chord and my fellow passengers started dancing to the rhythm of popular Bollywood songs. I realized that it was one of the best cruises for family vacations. You can even book one of these amazing Cordelia cruise packages if you are planning one with your family.

Pic Courtesy – Karthik Murali

The ship was teeming with passengers, as it was an ultimate holiday destination for families. A sense of excitement was high in the air. It was vibrant and colourful and the energy was infectious. It was unlike any other experience I have ever had. There are many reasons to sail on the Cordelia cruise ship, especially if you are planning a family vacation .

 Ultimate luxury on the sea

The Empress was nothing less than a magnificent city on the sea, a luxury five-star floating hotel, an ultimate destination by itself. With 11 decks, 10 restaurants and bars, 5 fascinating shows and over 20 exciting activities, it is all about style and indulgence.

With premium staterooms and cabins with ocean views that spell comfort and luxury, there is also a swimming pool, gymnasium, spa and salon, theatre, lounge bars and discotheque and a casino and even the highest Rock climbing wall at sea.

There is even a bridge tour on the Cordelia cruise ship that shows you the pilothouse or the wheelhouse, from where the ship is steered, commanded and manned with a sailor looking out into the sea manually as well.

The state-of-the-art ship takes you on an unparalleled journey across the oceans as you lose yourself in this fantasy.

Something in it for everyone

The premium luxury cruise is an ultimate experience for the discerning traveller and it is ideal for families and friends. There is something in it for everyone, which makes it the perfect luxury vacation and one of the best cruises for family travel.  As I walked around, children pranced around from deck to deck, all excited and overwhelmed.

While doting parents watched over them, couples walked hand in hand. Grandparents lounged in the comfortable recliners on the deck, sipping coffee and losing themselves in the sea breeze. It was virtually an escape into a mesmerising world and a far cry from the daily humdrum of life.

From learning zones for kids to fun shows, restaurants and food courts to movie nights and DJ pool parties, the cruise is also perfect for family vacations. For those who want a bit of quiet, the decks are welcoming with infinite views of the sea and sky. The cruise is also great as a wedding destination or for corporate events or even as a learning centre or an academy for kids.

World-class dining, restaurants and bars

Choose among three speciality and fine dining restaurants, food courts and pavilions, lounge bars, coffee shops and cafes. We alternated between Starlight and Chopstix, although the latter was my favourite. In the Cordelia cruise ship, you will find your favourite dish in the restaurant of your choice. It’s also one of the best cruises for family vacations as there is both homely and speciality food available and both are delicious. A food court on the open deck was always thronged, especially at tea with some delicious snacks. There are plenty of options for vegetarian travellers and Jain food is also available.

Regional dishes from different parts of the country were served, starting from street food to gourmet delicacies and desserts were rather endless. As for the bars, you could either go to the Connexions Bar and say cheers to a selection of cocktails or have a sundowner at the Pool Bar.

B for Bollywood

Bollywood is the flavour of the season with special shows like Balle Balle besides more romantic medleys, live entertainment and DJ parties. For the kids, there is a special science show and a magic show, although I must say that the child in me thoroughly enjoyed it. One of my personal favourites is the enchanting Bollywood version of the Burlesque, which is a late-night adult show. There is entertainment all day long and you can watch any show or movie of your choice.

Try your luck at the Casino

Experience a slice of Las Vegas onboard the Cordelia cruise ship and try your lady luck at the casino. From roulette to blackjack, this is one vibrant, fun-filled experience. Chill at the exclusive bar, pour yourself a cocktail, listen to some foot-tapping music and enjoy some good fortune. The atmosphere here is something else.

Wellness is the essence of the cruise

The very essence of the cruise is wellness, as you let go and lose yourself in the oceans around you while soaking in the lively and luxurious experiences on the ship. And in addition to the vibe, there is a spa and salon here as well and I had a fantastic head and shoulder massage here. There is a gym for fitness enthusiasts and a pool as well. However, the salts of the sea do their magic as you feel relaxed and rejuvenated all the time.

Premium staterooms with a private viewing of the ocean

Nothing is more special than having a private balcony overlooking the ocean and I had a mini-suite where I could see the colours of the ocean change throughout the day- soaking in the morning light to being bathed in moonlight or watching the many shades of blue merging with the foam filled waves. I looked out from my tiny balcony, sipping tea and letting the breeze refresh me.

There is nothing more exciting than having your own private screening of the ocean. There are also larger luxury suites and ocean view staterooms. If you would really like to indulge you can even opt for a Chairman suite. However if you have budget constraints, then opt for the interior stateroom which is cosy and comfortable and offers basic amenities. All staterooms and suites have attached bathrooms as well.

Destinations and Shore excursions

The Empress may be the only ship right now as a part of the Cordelia cruise ships but there are several destinations to choose from on both coasts.  Along the Arabian Sea, you can choose from Goa, Mumbai, Lakshwadeep, Diu while there is Visakhapatnam, Chennai and Pondicherry as well. There are shore excursions as well and sailing in the high seas without any particular destination. On the cruise ship, however, the journey is the destination.

Affordable Luxury

While these are some of the key highlights of the cruise, I felt that this was perfect for families craving a fun-filled holiday aboard a luxury vessel. It is unique and one of its kind and is a five-star experience on the seas and the best cruises for family travel. The cruises are now from Chennai to Visakhapatnam and return and prices are a little over a lakh of rupees for a couple, while kids do travel free for now. The all-inclusive rates include meals and accommodation and entertainment as well. However please check the website for the inclusions and exclusions.

Safety and health tips

Safety is another paramount experience and there are constant safety drills as well. There are life boats and demonstrations are also held regularly. There are also regular sanitisation and temperature checks and there is a health centre as well with medicines and an in-house doctor. However, it is advisable to bring your medicines if you suffer from any particular ailment. I did feel a bit seasick and had symptoms of vertigo with dizzying spells and sweating. However the symptoms lasted for a day and after medication, I was much better and my sea legs were restored, meaning I found my balance and my sense of equilibrium.

Your body has to get used to the rock and rolling and until then, you might feel a bit at sea, literally speaking. However do not panic and rest assured, you will be fine after a good night’s sleep. There is nothing that the oceans can’t cure you of.

Book your luxury vacation aboard the Cordelia cruise ship now and lose yourself in the lap of luxury with the mighty ocean as your companion.

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