Virgin Voyages has been making waves (excuse the pun!) ever since Virgin Group announced the establishment of a Virgin cruise line in December 2014. On February 14th 2019 Virgin Voyages went on sale to the public, with sailings on the first ship, Scarlet Lady, starting from 2020. Designed to be unlike any other experience on the planet, Virgin Voyages is bringing about an “Epic Sea Change for All”. Richard Branson’s latest venture is primarily designed for the young, and young at heart. To learn more, read our blog post on everything you need to know about Virgin Voyages!
What Makes Virgin Voyages Unique?
Virgin Voyages is adult by design. This means that it’s not your standard cruise ship minus children, but instead, every single space has been carefully designed for adults. For the first ship, Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages has worked with a creative group of individuals comprised of some of the most sought-after interior designers, artists and architects including Roman and Williams, Tom Dixon’s Design Research Studio, Concrete Amsterdam, and more – many of whom are masterminds behind some of the world’s most stylish luxury hotels.
With this in mind, on a Virgin Voyages ship, you’ll find a range of luxury facilities and amenities designed to an incredibly high spec to enhance your voyage. Take The Manor, for example – a two-story, three bar nightclub that transforms throughout the night. At the start of the night, you can expect groundbreaking shows. Later on, DJs will play an eclectic mix of music from up and coming artists. And the end of the night, The Manor will be transformed into a goodbye-early-morning-workout nightclub.
Equally transformative, and unique are the “seabeds”, available in all cabins except the Solo Insider cabin and Solo Seaview cabin. By night your seabed does what it says on the tin! It’s a comfy bed at sea, as you dream of Caribbean islands and cocktails. But by day your seabed can be turned into a sofa, perfect for lounging on, and entertaining guests.
What Accommodation is Available on the Scarlet Lady?
There are over 20 different types of suites and cabins on the Scarlet Lady. This means that there really is something for everyone. On one end of the spectrum, there’s the appropriately named “Massive Suite”. The largest suite on board, the Massive Suite interior is 830 square feet, whilst the exterior terrace is 1,317 square feet. Positioned at the front of the ship for unparalleled views, this three-room suite at sea is fit for a Rockstar. Complete with a private music room that doubles as a second bedroom, sun loungers, a standing hot tub and an open-air shower onto the sea, this suite is simply incredible. On the other end of the spectrum, there are solo cabins available, meaning that solo travellers don’t have to pay a premium. For solo travellers, the Solo Sea View cabin is ideal. Solo sailors can enjoy all the amenities of cabin life and watch the waves from a personal hideaway.
Groups may prefer the Social Insider cabin. These cabins have chalet style bunk beds that go from sleep to seat in no time. These cabins sleep up to four adults. Overall, across the entire ship, 86% of Virgin Voyages cabins will feature a balcony and 93% will feature an ocean view. For more information about the accommodation on board, contact our luxury travel experts.
What Destinations Can I Go To With Virgin Voyages?
Originally, the Scarlet Lady was supposed to sail to Havana (Cuba), Puerto Plata (Dominican Republic), and Costa Maya (Mexico). However, in June 2019, a ban was introduced on US sailings to Cuba. As a result, Havana was replaced with a four-night sailing to Key West. You can learn more about this itinerary by visiting our Virgin Voyages page. The Puerto Plata, and Costa Maya itineraries, all of the voyages last five nights. Every voyage will spend at least 1 day on the beautiful island of Bimini in the Bahamas. Think Fyre Festival, but real and fully formed! Inspired by Necker Island, sailors can enjoy an epic beach day and/or explore the island flavour and culture of Bimini. This dreamy paradise has sandy white beaches and inviting blue waters. In Bimini, you will also find an exclusive Virgin Voyages beach club, that will rival the world’s most famous beach clubs such as Blue Marlin Ibiza and Nikki Beach in Dubai.
Mornings at The Beach Club at Bimini will begin with yoga and meditation as sailors enjoy the sounds of the ocean. Afternoons at The Beach Club will consist of DJ-led pool parties. Grammy-Award-winning Mark Ronson will play the first set on Bimini for Virgin’s DJ residency program. He will play four times in 2020. Evenings will wind down with a beach bonfire to close out the evening with an acoustic musical performance.
In June 2019, Virgin Voyages also announced 3 new sailings:
- A five-night Riviera Maya voyage to Cozumel/Playa del Carmen/Tulum
- A seven-night Holidaze and Nights voyage to Puerto Plata and San Juan over Christmas Day and Boxing Day 2020
- A seven-night New Year’s Ahoy voyage to Puerto Plata and San Juan over New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day 2020
The seven-night sailings were introduced as a result of potential sailors seeking deeper, more personal experiences on their cruise, as some felt that four-night and five-night options didn’t provide enough time to fully explore each destination, or thoroughly enjoy the facilities on the Scarlet Lady. Far from any package tour, sailors can carve their own paths in places with experiences that promote self-discovery with more time to explore in each location. That means extended port hours and an overnight or late in the day sail away on all itineraries.
Where Does the Scarlet Lady Sail From?
Every voyage will sail from PortMiami in Miami – the cruise capital of the world. A special Virgin Voyages cruise terminal is currently being constructed.
What’s Included with Virgin Voyages?
- All restaurant food
- Group fitness classes
- Drinks (filtered still and sparkling water, non-pressed juices, sodas, teas, and coffee if you need a boost)
- Unlimited Wi-Fi
What’s Excluded with Virgin Voyages?
- Alcoholic beverages (unless you’re a sailor staying in a Rockstar suite)
- Flights to Miami, and flights from Miami
- Transfers from Miami to PortMiami, and from PortMiami (unless you’re a sailor staying in a Rockstar suite)
- Accommodation before or after the cruise
- Shore excursions
How Do I Get From The UK to Miami?
A direct flight from London to Miami usually takes around 9 hours. A connecting flight from a regional UK airport typically takes 12-15 hours (including the stopover). Once you arrive at Miami Airport, you’ll be pleased to find that you can get to PortMiami in around 20 minutes if you’re travelling by car. However, travellers on flights from the UK to Miami might want to stay overnight at a hotel in Miami before boarding the ship. Although all voyages depart in the evening, arriving the day before ensures you can acclimatise and means that you’ll have some time to explore! For more information about flights, hotels, and transfers contact our luxury travel experts.
How Can I Book Flights, Transfers and Accommodation?
At Rich Vein Travel we can book your flights, transfers and accommodation, in addition to your voyage! This means that all of the costs will be included in one quote. We can also book shore excursions closer to the point of departure, and any other little extras that you may require. As a luxury travel company, all of our flight and hotel bookings are ATOL protected.
How Many Eateries Are On The Scarlet Lady?
There are over 20 eateries on the Scarlet Lady. But, it’s worth mentioning that there are no buffets. It’s not the Virgin Voyages way. Instead, Virgin Voyages has designed all eateries on board to offer exceptional made to order eats. However, all meals are included in the price! One of the restaurants, Pink Agave, is inspired by Mexico City’s vibrant street food scene. The Test Kitchen is a cooking school come laboratory style restaurant. Social, educational and experiential, here you can delve into the inner workings of culinary masterminds as you indulge in delicious tasting menus, and participate in fun cooking classes. Extra Virgin, is one of the more, “standard” restaurants on board, specialising in elevated Italian food with handmade fresh pasta prepared daily. Whilst adventurous diners will be bound to fall in love with Korean BBQ joint Geonbae. At Geonbae every meal starts with complimentary soju and sailors are encouraged to take part in lively Korean drinking games. For late mornings, when you’re still recovering from the night before, head to Razzle Dazzle, for drag queen brunches full of serious sass to lift your spirits!
What Can I Do For Fun On Board?
There are lots of things to do for fun on the Scarlet Lady. We’ve already mentioned The Manor and The Beach Club on Bimini island. But on the Scarlet Lady, you will also find the Aquatic Club, which is a cool, contemporary pool deck full of daybeds, and sun loungers for lazy days at sea, and the Red Room which is a spacious, multi-form theatre where you’ll be enthralled by groundbreaking performances.
The Scarlet Lady will also have a vinyl record shop and a Japanese-style karaoke room on board. Voyage Vinyl will feature music from various eras and genres, which passengers can enjoy through personal listening stations. There will also be space for a live DJ, with performances from Mark Ronson, Boy George, DJ MK (Marc Kinchen) and Grammy-nominated Sofi Tukker.
Passengers who wish to put on their own performances will have the option to book The Groupie, a karaoke and entertainment lounge. The Groupie puts a modern twist on Japanese karaoke rooms, with private social spaces equipped with a karaoke player and microphones for you to sing your heart out to Celine Dione, Mariah Carey, and more.
Tattoo lovers will be pleased to know that there’s a tattoo parlour called Squid Ink on the Scarlet Lady. This is a world first. So whether you’re keen to add a tattoo to your ever-growing collection, or would simply like to dip your toes in the water, it’s worth a visit.
But if you would just like to pampered during your Virgin Voyages experience, that’s okay too! Self-care is important. At the Redemption Spa, you can relax and unwind in luxury with a range of sublime treatments and massages. Don’t forget to try the mudroom that will revitalise mind, body and soul.
Does The Scarlet Lady Have a Spa?
The Bahamas based OneSpaWorld has formed a seven-year partnership with Virgin Voyages. The company will oversee the line’s spa and wellness offerings when its first three vessels launch in 2020, 2021 and 2022. As OneSpaWorld currently manages spa and wellness programmes on 164 cruise ships on luxury cruise lines like Silversea and Seabourn, you’ll be in very capable hands – literally!
Does The Scarlet Lady Have a Gym?
Absolutely! With Virgin Voyages, cramped cruise gyms are a thing of the past. There are several fun ways to stay fit and healthy on your voyage. You’ll be able to live your best life at the B-Complex Gym, where you can bike, build your fitness, burn calories, and balance your chi with yoga classes.
The Scarlet Lady also has a purpose-built fitness space called the Athletic Club. Comprising of a training camp room, boxing ring, and basketball court, you can train with friends, or make new ones as you push your body to the limit. After working up a sweat, visit the Athletic Club juice bar. These healthy and cold-pressed juices are the ultimate reward for all your hard work.
Whether you want to try yoga for the first time, or a struggling to hold your King Pigeon Pose, The Crow’s Nest is the best location for early morning yoga. Located on the upper-level deck, there are complimentary yoga classes and complimentary meditation sessions available for all sailors. With the sun shining from above, the sea breeze filling your lungs, and the beautiful ocean surrounding you, this will be one of your most fulfilling experiences on board.
Is Virgin Voyages Eco-Friendly?
Virgin Voyages mirrors Richard Branson’s own desire to make the planet more green and eco-friendly. Virgin Voyages is committed to having one of the cleanest fleets at sea. The company has banned single-use plastics on board its ships, including straws, bottled water, shopping bags, and take-away coffee and tea cups. Instead, the company will emphasise the use of recyclable and reusable materials across the ship. Virgin Voyages has also partnered with Climeon, with a goal to significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions by converting engine waste heat into clean electricity.
Is the Scarlet Lady Accessible?
Yes, the Scarlet Lady is definitely accessible. There are a limited number of cabins available for sailors with special needs or reduced mobility. There are a limited number of cabins that can accommodate wheelchairs. Bring your own preferred wheelchair, if needed, and be sure to book early to guarantee the cabin of your choice. Collapsible wheelchairs are strongly encouraged. Sailors staying in ADA-compliant cabins and suites are allowed to bring mobility scooters on board but are asked to please store them in the cabin when not in use. Service animals are permitted too.
Please book early and specify all of your required accommodations to your travel expert at Rich Vein Travel.
Will There Be Any More Ships In The Future?
Virgin Voyages currently has four ships on order, due for delivery in 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023. Virgin Voyages’ first fleet will be known as the “Lady Ships”, a play on the term ‘your ladyship’, giving a nod to Virgin’s British heritage. For the time being, at Rich Vein Travel we are only taking bookings for the first ship, Scarlet Lady.
How Do I Make a Booking?
Complete the contact us form to start your journey! Alternatively, you can live chat with our luxury travel experts online, or call 01618793959.