Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)
Ship: 371 out of 500
Accommodation: 143 out of 200
Food: 266 out of 400
Service: 282 out of 400
Entertainment: 70 out of 100
Cruise: 225 out of 400
Overall Score: 1357 out of 2000
Le Ponant Statistics
Size: Boutique Ship
Cruise Line: Ponant Cruises
Former Names: none
IMO Number: 8914219
Builder: SFCN (France)
Original Cost: n/a
Entered Service: 1991
Length (ft/m): 288.7/88.0
Beam (ft/m): 39.3/12.0
Draft (ft/m): 13.1/4.0
Propulsion/Propellers: diesel/sail power/1
Passenger Decks: 3
Total Crew: 32
Passengers (lower beds): 64
Passenger Space Ratio (lower beds): 23.2
Passenger/Crew Ratio (lower beds): 2.1
Cabins (total): 32
Size Range (sq ft/m): 139.9/13.0
Cabins (for one person): 0
Cabins (with private balcony): 0
Cabins (wheelchair accessible): 0
Wheelchair accessibility: None
Cabin Current: 220 volts
Casino (gaming tables): No
Slot Machines: No
Swimming Pools: 0
Hot Tubs (on deck): 0
Self-Service Launderette: No
Dedicated Cinema/Seats: No
Onboard currency: Euros
Chic decor for relaxed cruising for French-speakers
Overview. Le Ponant is best suited to young-minded couples and singles who want contemporary, sophisticated facilities in a very relaxed but chic setting, with good food and service, no entertainment, and plenty of time for quiet relaxation.
The Ship. Ultra sleek, and very efficiently designed, this contemporary sail-cruise ship has three masts that rise 54.7ft (16.7m) above the water line, and electronic winches assist in the furling and unfurling of the sails. The total sail area measures approximately 16,140 sq ft (1,500 sq m). This captivating ship has plenty of room on its open decks for sunbathing. Although they have padded cushions, somehow the off-white plastic sunloungers are not at all elegant.
The interior design is clean, stylish, functional, and high-tech. Three public lounges have pastel decor, soft colors and great flair. One price fits all. The ship is marketed mainly to young, sophisticated French-speaking passengers who love yachting and the sea. The company also has a three mega-yacht cruise ships. Gratuities are ‘not required’, but they are expected.
Accommodation. There are five cabins on Antigua Deck (the open deck) and 27 on Marie Galante Deck (the lowest deck). Crisp, clean blond woods and pristine white cabins have twin beds that convert to a double. There’s a minibar, personal safe, and a bathroom. All cabins have portholes, artwork, and a refrigerator. There is limited storage, however, and few drawers - they are also very small. The cabin bathrooms are quite small, but efficient.
Dining. The lovely Karukera dining room has an open-seating policy. There is fresh fish daily, when available, and dinner is always treated as a true affaire gastronomique. The chef goes out to buy fresh local food items, including fresh fish, produce, and fruit. Free wines are included for lunch and dinner, and the cuisine is, naturally, classic French. That Frenchness also means the selection of cheeses, breads, and breakfast croissants is good. There are free cappuccinos and espressos. For casual breakfasts and luncheons, there is a charming outdoor café under a canvas sailcloth awning.
Entertainment. There is no professional entertainment as such, although occasionally the crew may put on a little soirée. Dinner is the main event each evening, and, being a French product, dinner can provide several hours’ worth of entertainment in itself.
Spa/Fitness. There is no spa, fitness room, sauna, or steam room. However, for recreation, there are water sports facilities, and these include an aft marina platform from which you can swim, windsurfers, waterski boat, and scuba and snorkel equipment. Scuba diving costs extra, charged per dive.