After 31 cruises, I may have found the cruise perfect for my wife and me. We had the privilege of being on the third sailing of the Ervima from Barcelona to Lisbon. We booked the cruise to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary, and it did not disappoint. Nothing was missing from this trip, from the outstanding staff (barely missing a beat) to the beautiful yacht, the fantastic ports, and the superb relaxation.
We flew to Barcelona a day early and stayed in the Hotel Arts, the hotel recommended by the Ritz. Let’s say an outstanding selection. When we entered our room, we were greeted with a plate of treats, a handwritten note, and a picture of our yacht. The Ritz had also sent a letter with information on our transfer to the yacht in the morning. The Ritz set up a hospitality desk in the hotel and staffed it with folks who took fantastic care of us.
We went to the lobby a little early, were directed where to go, and were greeted by two extraordinary ladies who escorted us to the awaiting transportation. That was the first sign that this cruise might be a little different than any we have ever taken. We had a short drive to the pier. Upon exiting the transport, we were greeted by another Ritz employee (contract, I am sure) who escorted us to the security line and stayed with us until we got to security. After a very brief check of the passports and a metal detector, as soon as we passed through, we were handed a glass of champagne in a lovely flute and escorted to a waiting area to sip champagne until they were ready to check us in. They prided themselves on personally escorting us to a station where they checked our passports and vaccination cards (we only had one shot over a year and a half ago - so the check was more of a cursory examination anyway). They took down some information and provided us with our suite keys. Another Ritz employee escorted us to the yacht, where she handed us off to a personal concierge. The same occurred upon departing the cruise at the end of the eight days. Amazing!