I wanted to go to Antarctica in comfort and Ponant offered an excellent 'no single supplement' deal. Le Boreal is an elegant and well maintained ship with wonderful staff.
It was very annoying not to get our travel documents until 2 weeks before departure. I was stressing about the baggage limits and the timing of the flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia. It turned out I need not have worried as the flight was at 0830 and the baggage limit was 23kgs. Arriving in Ushuaia we were taken to the magnificent hotel Arakur for lunch and an optional walk. The amount of time at the hotel could have been halved.
On Le Boreal we ate most of our meals in the main dining room on level 2 rather than the self service option on level 6. Excellent variety of well prepared food and free flowing wines. The staff remembered our preferences and I noticed them carefully 'tweaking' the dishes on offer for a couple of fussy passengers. I always had room service breakfast which was fast and my order was always correct, something that is often a problem on larger ships.
I would not have wanted to share my cabin but it had lots of storage space and lots of clothes hangers, not to mention a well stocked free mini bar. Having a balcony is great and the glass wall in the bathroom makes it seem bigger. The separate toilet was very small, almost claustrophobic in dark brown and is the only reason for my 4 star rating. We had the "Drake lake" both ways, that is very smooth crossings so this might not be the best cabin if you are prone to sea sickness. Also being forward meant a steel balcony balustrade.
Highly recommend the chocolate shops!
Had a buffet lunch at the Hotel Arakur which is magnificent. I'd defineitely factor in a stay here if I ever went back to Ushuaia.