• Cheers to 25 years: Celebrate with Us!
  • Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Log In
  • Find a Cruise
  • Deals
  • Excursions
  • More
You may also like
Dismiss
Virgin Voyages to Unveil Record Shop and Bookable Karaoke Room on First Cruise Ship
Virgin Voyages Unveils Entertainment, Introduces The Beach Club Shoreside Experience
The Beach Club at Bimini (Image: Virgin Voyages)

Virgin Voyages Unveils Entertainment, Introduces The Beach Club Shoreside Experience

Virgin Voyages Unveils Entertainment, Introduces The Beach Club Shoreside Experience
The Beach Club at Bimini (Image: Virgin Voyages)

October 10, 2019

Dori Saltzman
Contributor
  • Facebook
  • Pinterest
  • Twitter

(10:30 a.m. EST) -- When it begins sailing in April 2020, Virgin Voyages' first ship, Scarlet Lady, will offer a festival-like lineup of evening entertainment that features aerialists, comedy, pop-up music, interactive theater and more. Off the ship, all of Scarlet Lady's itineraries will include a stop at The Beach Club, a private venue in Bimini, Bahamas. Both announcements were made in New York City today at an event that also celebrated the company officially opening for bookings.

"Today is an incredibly exciting day. It's been six and a half years of creating this company. Today is the day," said Tom McAlpin, president and CEO of Virgin Voyages, announcing the line was officially open for bookings.

"I've dreamed of starting my own cruise line since I was in my 20s, and now the launch is finally getting close," said Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson. "We have taken the time to think about every detail and craft an experience that brings the Virgin brand to life and disrupts the travel industry."

Below is a breakdown of the newly revealed experiences:

The Manor on Scarlet Lady (Image: Virgin Voyages)

Onboard Entertainment

Much like Virgin did with its cabin and public space designs, the company worked with a creative collective of talent to build an onboard entertainment program that is, like the line itself, more than a little edgy. As part of that, and in another departure from cruise ship tradition, Scarlet Lady will not have a cruise director. Instead, the ship will have a group of people dedicated to making "Happenings" happen around the ship.

Featured Videos

Video Scenes From The Golden Girls Theme Cruise 2019

Video Scenes From The Golden Girls Theme Cruise 2019

Martini Bar Bartender Pours 15 Martinis at Once on Celebrity Cruises

Martini Bar Bartender Pours 15 Martinis at Once on Celebrity Cruises

First Look At Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady

First Look At Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady

Virgin Voyages Unveils Beach Club And Entertainment

Virgin Voyages Unveils Beach Club And Entertainment

Virgin Voyages Reveals Suite Design New Cruise Ship

Virgin Voyages Reveals Suite Design New Cruise Ship

Marella Cruises Cast Members Rehearse New Show Debut

Marella Cruises Cast Members Rehearse New Show Debut

Star Wars Day At Sea On Disney Cruise Line

Star Wars Day At Sea On Disney Cruise Line

5 Craziest Top-Deck Activities On Cruise Ships

5 Craziest Top-Deck Activities On Cruise Ships

Norwegian Escape's Ropes Course - Are You Brave Enough?

Norwegian Escape's Ropes Course - Are You Brave Enough?

Sneak Peek: "Beauty And The Beast" On Disney Dream -- Behind The Scenes Video

Sneak Peek: "Beauty And The Beast" On Disney Dream -- Behind The Scenes Video

The Himalayan Bridge On MSC Meraviglia - Ropes Course POV Video

The Himalayan Bridge On MSC Meraviglia - Ropes Course POV Video

SkyRide On Carnival Vista: Cruise Critic Tries It

SkyRide On Carnival Vista: Cruise Critic Tries It

Harmony Of The Seas Pool And Sports Zone

Harmony Of The Seas Pool And Sports Zone

Harmony Of The Seas Boardwalk

Harmony Of The Seas Boardwalk

Harmony Of The Seas Royal Promenade

Harmony Of The Seas Royal Promenade

Harmony Of The Seas Entertainment Place

Harmony Of The Seas Entertainment Place

Perfect Storm Water Slides On Harmony Of The Seas

Perfect Storm Water Slides On Harmony Of The Seas

Greased Lightnin': Royal Caribbean Brings Another Broadway Hit

Greased Lightnin': Royal Caribbean Brings Another Broadway Hit

Plunging Into Adventure On The Tallest Slide At Sea: Royal Caribbean Reveals 10-Story Ultimate Abyss

Plunging Into Adventure On The Tallest Slide At Sea: Royal Caribbean Reveals 10-Story Ultimate Abyss

Crystal Cruises' Submarine -- Cruise Critic Tries It Out On Esprit

Crystal Cruises' Submarine -- Cruise Critic Tries It Out On Esprit

Cruise Critic Flowrider On Royal Caribbean's Freedom Of The Seas

Cruise Critic Flowrider On Royal Caribbean's Freedom Of The Seas

Oasis Of The Seas Flowrider - Cruise Critic Goes Surfing

Oasis Of The Seas Flowrider - Cruise Critic Goes Surfing

Oasis Of The Seas Jazz On 4 Performance

Oasis Of The Seas Jazz On 4 Performance

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade Parade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade Parade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Carousel In Action (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Carousel In Action (2009)

Such happenings, which executives at the line refer to as "events and gigs," are being created by the collective, which comprises a variety of theater producers, directors and artists including one of the producers behind the New York City-based "Sleep No More" and the Tony Award-nominated choreographer of the Broadway musical "Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812."

"Our sailors are going to experience a festival of choice onboard that we hope will really transform them," said Nirmal Saverimuttu, chief operating office for Virgin Voyages, at an event in London a few days before the New York City event. "We hope that when our sailors leave Scarlet Lady they will come back just a little bit different and they might have some stories to tell about all the different discoveries they made onboard."

According to the line, passengers won't just sit and watch shows; instead, they may be asked to participate with the cast or become a part of the performance.

The Red Room (Image: Virgin Voyages)

"From modern takes on classic stories, to interactive dance parties and off-the-wall participatory acts, the experiences will break down the fourth wall and push the boundaries of traditional stage performances," the line wrote in its official announcement.

To accommodate the variety of theater that will be offered, Virgin Voyages created The Red Room (not that Red Room), a multiform theater at sea that can transform into four different configurations -- traditional, alley stage (like those used in a fashion show), dance flat-floor, and reverse stage -- enabling the line to create completely different experiences for each day of the four- or five-night voyage.

Six original shows are being created, including one by one of the producers behind "Sleep No More" and "Queen of the Night." Another of the shows, "Duel Reality" will be a retelling of Romeo and Juliet with a modern twist, featuring acrobatic storytelling, while "Never Sleep Alone," is a participatory show featuring the straight-talking relationship therapist, Dr. Alex Shiller (the alter ego of immersive performer Roslyn Hart).

The Beach Club at night (Image: Virgin Voyages)

The Beach Club

All Virgin Voyages itineraries will include a stop at Bimini in the Bahamas. Similar to other cruise lines' private island destinations, Virgin's Bimini experience, The Beach Club, will be a private beach venue that the line says "will rival the best beach clubs in Ibiza and Saint-Tropez." Being built in partnership with Resorts World Bimini, the 4.5-acre The Beach Club at Bimini will be located a short transfer away from the pier and will overlook the ocean with an expansive lagoon-style pool as the central anchor of the club.

"What's really cool about Bimini is there's a dock there, there's a lot that you can do," said McAlpin. "The benefit is it's really close to Miami, so we can stay here later than normal and enjoy a sunset most of the year."

Port visits will be full day, starting early in the morning with optional yoga and meditation on the beach. The energy will amp up gradually as the day progresses, reaching a high point during the day, then slowly cycling back to relaxed with a beach bonfire and an acoustic music performance as the sun goes down.

The Beach Club during the day (Image: Virgin Voyages)

During the day, DJ-led pool and flotilla parties will be the center of attention, with occasional guest DJs, including Grammy, MTV Video Music and Soul Train Music award-winning artist Mark Ronson and Boy George.

The Beach Club at Bimini will also feature complimentary food from locally-inspired menus that serve up island favorites such as conch and mango salad, banana leaf-wrapped queen snapper, Bahamian rum cake and more. There also will be six bars, so cruisers have plenty of opportunities to imbibe while they relax.

As for relaxation, people will find hammock groves and beach loungers, or they can opt to pay extra for beach and poolside cabanas. Those looking to be more active will find spots designated for watersports and beach play. Suite passengers will have an exclusive space at The Beach Club with a dedicated bar, complimentary food service, an outdoor terrace lounge, sun loungers and beach cabanas.

Cruisers will not be required to stay within the confines of The Beach Club, however. Those looking to explore the island of Bimini will have opportunities to do so.

How was this article?

Featured News

1
Silversea Cruise News: Live From Silver Moon, First Impressions of the Brand-New Luxury Cruise Ship
5
Live From Carnival's Mardi Gras: We Try BOLT, the First Roller Coaster at Sea
Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.