My husband and I have sailed many times before on Princess, Carnival, Norwegian, as well as Crystal and Oceana; so while we had some idea of what to expect on a cruise, sailing on a small yacht was a whole new experience for us and we loved it!!
We arrived a few days ahead of disembarkation, giving us time to enjoy Nice, and its environs such as Cannes. We stayed at Best Western Hotel Roosevelt, where we found the staff to be friendly and helpful. The hotel's location was great: close to Rue Massena, old Nice and the train station. From the hotel, we took a taxi to the port where we found the boarding to be very easy.
Even though we had five ports and one sea day, we still found this cruise to be relaxing. Breakfast was served in The Veranda on the upper deck, with windows all around or for those who wanted to enjoy the fresh air, there were tables just outside of the restaurant. They offered a good selection of breakfast options, my favourite being the muesli which was not overly sweet as it can be. We often made sure we were on board for lunch, again, served in The Veranda. Lunch options included many different salads which were very imaginative in the combinations of fruits, veggies, nuts and meats. There were also soups and hot entrees. I found the salads were more than enough for me. (My mouth just waters when I think of those fabulous salads!). Dinner in the Restaurant on deck three was just as special as the other meals of the day. Again great imagination was evident with the appetizers and entrees and again all were delicious. Accompanying this wonderful food was the attentive wait staff. One day, I took a tour of the galley which was fascinating, it's amazing that so much scrumptious food can come out of such a small space! Another day, I attended a cooking demonstration, pestos and oil infusions. Tours of the engine room and the bridge were also available; but we did not take advantage of them. As well there was a trip to a local market with the chef offered at one of our ports; but due to inclement weather, it had to be cancelled.
My husband and I enjoyed the ports of call especially since we had never visited three of them: two in Corsica and one in Elba. The other two ports, Monaco and Villefranche we had visited before on our own previously. Unfortunately, the day we were in Villefranche it rained the entire day. We stayed on board but some of our fellow passengers ventured out, returning wet to the bone.
While the cabins are spacious and comfortable they are a little tired; but no worries, Windstar is planning on remodeling its fleet over the next several months. The bathrooms were nicely laid out with the scent of L'Occitane products permeating the space. My only concern was the lack of novels in the library. I realize that many people have electronic gadgets for accessing books but I still appreciate having a selection of books on board to choose from and read. Disembarkation in Rome was very easy. We pre-arranged for a driver to pick us up to take us and another couple who we had just met on board to the airport. We enjoyed our cruise so much that we took advantage of their future cruise program which is a great deal.