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Viking Saturn Review

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The Sun Deck on Viking Star (Photo: Cruise Critic)
Viking Sea
The Thermal Suite in Viking Sea's Liv Nordic Spa (Photo: Cruise Critic)
Viking Sky

Overview 
The 930-passenger Viking Saturn will debut in 2023, taking Viking Cruises’ ocean-going fleet to nine ships, including new-for-2022 Viking Mars and Viking Neptune. 

Viking’s approach to its ocean fleet means that Viking Saturn is near identical to the line's other ships, with a chic Scandinavian design reflected in the decor and organic materials of the public spaces, and a sophisticated grown-up feel (all sailings on Viking are strictly for over 18s).

Don’t expect music-pumping nightclubs or flashy casinos. Viking is all about a more cultured style of cruising, reflected in everything from the daily program to evening entertainment, the lounge spaces equipped with puzzles and books, and ship-led shore excursions. Think art lectures, not art auctions. Watercolor painting classes, over waterslides, and traditional tea ceremonies instead of a teen club. 

As with sister ships, Viking Saturn will offer a high number of inclusions, including WiFi, 24-hour room service, a range of shore excursions, gratuities, dining at specialty restaurants, wine, beer, and sodas with lunch and dinner, plus -- and a real boon for spa-lovers -- access to the ship’s luxury thermal suite at the LivNordic Spa. 

Dining 

Dining is a highlight on a Viking cruise. Venues are elegant and extra comfortable. There’s an emphasis on the destination, too, with venues like The Chef’s Table specializing in regional dishes and The Kitchen Table offering a chef’s market tour combined with a cooking class and dining experience. The only fee venue onboard, The Kitchen Table is more of an excursion-led foodie experience, than simply a dining venue. 

There are eight inclusive dining options on Viking Saturn. Here’s what you can expect: 

The Restaurant (Deck 2): Viking’s equivalent of the main dining room serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Mamsen’s (Deck 7): Located within the Explorer Lounge, Mamsen’s is a classy spot for Norwegian deli-style fare.

World Café (Deck 7): Sandwiched between Aquavit Terrace and the Main Pool, World Cafe is perfect for a casual meal, serving a range of international cuisines, including American, European, Chinese, and Japanese. 

The Chef’s Table (Deck 1): Clustered together with The Kitchen Table and Manfredi’s, The Chef’s Table is the place for a tasting menu with wine pairing. There’s a private dining room within the restaurant. 

Manfredi’s (Deck 1): Named after Manfredi Lefebvre d'Ovidio, the former owner of Silversea Cruises and the majority owner of Abercrombie & Kent, who is good friends with Viking’s Chairman Torstein Hagen, Manfredi’s is the place for Italian flavors. 

The Pool Grill (Deck 7): Located by the Main Pool, The Pool Grill is the go-to for poolside burgers, fries, and other grill options. 

The Wintergarden (Deck 7): Also located by the pool, the stylish Wintergarden serves afternoon tea. 

Room service: Included and available 24-hour a day. 

For fee:

The Kitchen Table (Deck 1): A must-do experience for foodies, the interactive Kitchen Table combines an onshore ‘shopping with the chef’ experience -- think the fragrant and floral-scented fresh produce markets of the Mediterranean and fresh-off-the-boat fish markets of Norway -- to taste local produce, haggle with vendors, and examining produce to take back to the ship. This is followed by a cooking class and dinner back onboard.

Cabins

Viking Saturn’s 465 all-balcony cabins will be available in five categories, starting from 270 sq. ft. Verandah accommodation to the top-end Owner’s Suite. 

Spread over decks three to eight, all cabins include king-size beds; a seating area; large flat-screen LCD TVs with movies-on-demand; USB ports for charging devices; mini-bar; safe and hairdryer. Bathrooms feature a glass-enclosed shower; heated floors; premium Freyja bath products, and anti-fog mirrors. Suites will offer wraparound private verandas. 

Suites include the Penthouse Junior Suite (405 sqft.); Explorer Suite (from 757 to 1,163 sqft.), and Owner’s Suite (1,448 sqft.). 

All suite-class passengers get speedy embarkation and priority cabin access; first opportunity to reserve shore excursions (up to 107 days prior to departure, depending on suite type); first priority booking of spa treatments (up to 100 days prior to departure, depending on suite type); mini-bar with alcoholic beverages, sodas, water, and snacks, replenished once daily; large master bathroom featuring a spacious glass-enclosed shower, double-sink vanity; complimentary laundry, dry cleaning, pressing and shoe shine services; welcome bottle of Champagne; in-suite binoculars, coffee brewer, and a traditional Norwegian Marius-weave blanket. 

The difference between the Penthouse Junior Suite and Explorer Suite, as well as the size, is that the latter has a living room and dining area that seats four. 

The single Owner’s Suite is the largest and most sumptuous accommodation onboard. Perks include a welcome bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne; a spacious living room; a separate dining area that seats six guests; private library, wine and music collections curated by Torstein Hagen; an ocean-view dry sauna; a pantry for room service and hosted events; a complimentary shore excursion with private car and driver (up to four guests) in a port city of your choice (valued at up to $800), and daily personalized tea or pre-dinner cocktail and canapés by request. 

Top Deck Attractions & Wellness  

Two pools include the Main Pool, with a big screen showing movies and sun loungers, and a sleek glass-backed infinity pool cantilevered off the stern, by the Aquavit Terrace. Hot tubs are located by each pool. Expect plenty of sunbathing space. 

Viking’s award-winning LivNordic Spa, found on Deck 1, is a gorgeous space with a focus on holistic wellness. The thermal suite includes the line’s famed Snow Grotto, plus steam rooms, saunas, hydrotherapy plunge pools, and a relaxation area with padded lounge beds. Incredibly, use of the thermal suite is included. Treatments are extra. 

There’s also a sports deck, a salon, and fitness center. 

Entertainment

Bars include:

The Viking Living Room and Viking Bar (Deck 1): This central spot has live music, including a pianist, and a diverse library. 

Torshaven (Deck 2): The ship’s jazz club is typically the liveliest spot onboard.

Explorers’ Lounge (Deck 7 & 8): The go-to for classy views, deli food, and live entertainment throughout the day. 

Pool Bar & Wintergarden (Deck 7): These two neighboring spots are perfect for enjoying daytime refreshments and sundowners. 

Theater Bar (Deck 2): There’s also a bar located within the theater, where movies, lectures, and evening performances take place. 

Enrichment takes an educational approach and onboard pastimes are more sedate than what you’d find on many other lines, this means no casino, nightclub, karaoke, acrobatic show, or gimmicky robotic bar. Expect talks led by Viking resident historians, expert guest lecturers, cooking classes, wine tastings, and trivia. On a Viking cruise, passengers are encouraged to indulge in the vast onboard library of glossy tomes. 

Families 

Since Viking is an adults-only cruise line, there are no facilities for families with kids. 

Itineraries

The 47,800-ton Viking Saturn will spend its maiden season sailing in Scandinavian and the northern region, with three new itineraries for the line. These include two 15-day sailings, ‘Iceland & Norway’s Arctic Explorer’ and ‘Iconic Iceland, Greenland & Canada,’ plus a 29-day ‘Greenland, Iceland, Norway & Beyond,’ sailing, from August 2023.

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