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This new cruise ship could be the most luxurious ever for off-the-beaten-path cruising

July 16, 2021
4 min read
This new cruise ship could be the most luxurious ever for off-the-beaten-path cruising
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What may be the most luxurious expedition cruise vessel ever is finally debuting this weekend after a nearly year-long delay caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Luxury line Crystal Cruises' long-awaited, 200-passenger Crystal Endeavor will depart Reykjavík, Iceland, on Sunday on its first voyage with paying passengers.

The 10-night trip will be the first of five consecutive Iceland sailings scheduled for the vessel that will involve a complete circumnavigation of the destination and an in-depth look at its dramatic landscape of volcanoes, geysers, hot springs and lava fields.

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Built to be both super luxurious and super tough, Crystal Endeavor was designed to take luxury travelers to the most off-the-beaten-path parts of the world, including Antarctica and the Arctic, in style.

It's Crystal's first vessel specifically designed for expedition cruising -- a type of cruising that involves traveling to remote, hard-to-reach places on small, hardy vessels that carry their own landing craft.

Crystal, until now, has operated traditional luxury cruise vessels that include two ocean-going ships that carry 848 and 980 passengers, respectively, and five small river ships based in Europe. The line also operates a single, 62-passenger yacht.

The Expedition Lounge is one of the cozy places to relax onboard Crystal Endeavor. (Photo courtesy of Crystal Cruises)

Crystal ships are known for offering a very high-end (and pricey) luxury experience, and the line's new expedition vessel will be no exception.

Crystal Endeavor is an all-suite ship with such luxury flourishes as butler service for every passenger and an upscale restaurant serving Japanese cuisine -- the only one of its kind on an expedition ship.

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In addition to the Japanese eatery, there are five additional high-end dining venues -- an unusually large number for an expedition ship holding just 200 passengers.

Crystal Endeavor also is home to a stylish, glass-covered solarium with a pool and Jacuzzi; a pampering spa; a cigar bar; and even a casino (a first for an expedition ship). Its staff-to-passenger ratio is one-to-one -- one of the highest ratios of any cruise vessel.

Related: A new, $400,000 luxury cruise just sold out in less than 3 hours

A deluxe suite is one of the cabin categories on Crystal Endeavor. (Photo courtesy of Crystal Cruises)

Still, Crystal Endeavor isn’t just about luxury. On the adventure side, the vessel will sail with a fleet of Zodiacs for exploring, plus kayaks and snorkel gear. But its real over-the-top adventure amenities are its two helicopters and a submarine. Yes, you can explore places like Antarctica from above and below, too, when sailing on Crystal Endeavor.

In addition, as many as 22 guides on every voyage will include biologists, ornithologists and other experts who will offer insights on the destinations the ship visits and lead landings.

Crystal Endeavor will have a Polar Class 6 ice-class rating — one of the highest levels that can be found among expedition ships that aren't full-blown icebreakers.

After sailing around Iceland for the coming weeks, Crystal Endeavor will offer several sailings to Norway and other northerly areas in Europe before repositioning to Antarctica for the winter.

Fares for the vessel start at $8,549 per person for a nine-night sailing in the Caribbean.

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Featured image courtesy of Crystal Cruises.

Featured image by The 200-passenger Crystal Endeavor. (Photo courtesy of Crystal Cruises)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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It's hard to find a card that competes with the mile-long list of benefits that come with the Amex Business Platinum. While it's certainly not the card for the average consumer, a business owner with tons of expenses -- especially related to travel -- will find this card incredibly valuable. This card is similar to the consumer version that Amex offers, but with more business-oriented perks around statement credits and earning rates that are a better fit for business owners.

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  • Steep annual fee
  • Difficulty meeting $15,000 welcome offer for smaller businesses
  • Limited high-bonus categories outside of travel
  • The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, and 1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases.
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  • Unlock over $1,000 in annual statement credits on a curation of business purchases, including select purchases made with Dell Technologies, Indeed, Adobe, and U.S. wireless service providers.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year for checked baggage fees, lounge day passes, and more at one selected airline.
  • $189 CLEAR® Credit: Use your Card and get up to $189 back per year on your CLEAR® membership. CLEAR® is available at more than 50 U.S. airports and stadiums.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more lounge location options than any other credit card on the market as of 9/2021.
  • $695 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.