In August Silversea Cruises launched the 12th ship of its ultra-luxury, all-suite fleet with a pre-debut architectural voyage on the Silver Nova. Departing out of Trieste I spent four days and nights walking every inch of this magnificent ship. The following week Silver Nova welcomed the first passengers on the 728-passenger ship – the largest of Silversea’s fleet and one of the most environmentally conscious, ultra-luxury ships ever built. At 801-feet long and 97-feet wide, its novel, sensational beauty is a sight to behold.
Here are eight reasons to make your next cruise one on Silversea’s Silver Nova:
- An Engineering Marvel
The engineering and construction feats make Silver Nova far more efficient and marks a new environmental benchmark for which all other cruise lines will without doubt want to emulate. However, it’s the ship’s mind-boggling asymmetrical design, use of glass, and high ceilings that make the Nova breathtaking, as the ocean, her vistas, and destination ports become the focal point from almost every onboard location.
2. The Outdoors Come Inside
There is a constant sensation onboard of suspended animation at every turn as even the elevators and staircases are ocean facing, bringing indoors the outside. In fact, 95-percent of ship’s public areas have outdoor views and 100-percent of staterooms have balconies.
The revolutionary asymmetrical ship design also resulted in an utterly stunning pool deck. The Silver Nova’s horizontal layout allows for the highest ceiling heights giving a greater sense of spaciousness. Indeed, Silversea used over 43,000 square feet of glass in constructing the Nova.
3. The Suite Life
The Silver Nova is an all-suite ship. Starting at 357-square feet, and up to 1,055 square feet, all are large. There are seven new suite categories on the Nova providing guests with more options from which to choose. I stayed in a Deck 7 Deluxe Veranda Suite mid-ship where the design portrayed Silversea’s trademark “whispered luxury.”
The calming color palette had dark turquoise pops of color in the pillows, brocade black-out curtains, and carpeting. The king-sized bed had dreamy Rivolta Carmignani linens and was flanked by nightstands boasting multiple US and EU outlets, USB, and fast charging ports. The 60-inch swivel flatscreen TV was wall-embedded in the separate seating area with a full-sized sofa, ottoman, marble-topped coffee table, and a combination granite desk and stocked bar facing an exceptionally large balcony. The large walk-in closet had a waist-level in-room safe and the separate granite-topped vanity area had additional storage.
Nova bathrooms happily resemble those in 6-star hotels. Otivm spa amenities in environmentally sound, multi-use dispensers grace both the enormous, walk-in Carrera marble-tiled shower, and large, gray-and-white granite countertops. The dual-fauceted sink had abundant space and Nobili fixtures.
4. A Butler for Every Stateroom
Of course, all Nova’s accommodations come with its signature Butler service that provide unparalleled service to meet even the most discerning guests’ needs or desires. With a crew of 544 providing a crew-to-guest ratio of 1:1.3, one never waits for anything.
Five minutes after I arrived to my stateroom, my Butler came and introduced himself, offered to help me unpack, asked if I wanted anything else in the minibar, then poured me a glass of chilled champagne. I became immediately convinced I had arrived to heaven.
5. Art Lovers will be Awed.
Throughout the ship, including the ocean-facing stair landings, there are 1,800 pieces of art, made by 60 artists from 25 countries. While I normally take the stairs onboard attempting to unload a few calories, on the Nova it was challenging as admiring the collection often made me hopelessly late to my destination. However, taking the ocean-facing elevators was its own form of entertainment as it provided inspiring oceanic vistas.
British artist Esther Miles and Ukrainian artist Irina Yermolova’s pieces were vibrantly whimsical, while Iranian Batool Showghi had a mesmerizing framed multiple tin-box piece. Even at guests’ perennial favorite, Arts Café, the ceramics and tea tins were perfectly selected to add panache.
6. Foodie Bliss
Silver Nova has nine dining options and 10 bars and lounges, so choices abound. New to its already impressive line-up is the al fresco Marquee with forever views and magnolia trees accenting the expansive space. The Marquee encompasses The Grill for its ‘hot rocks’ culinary concept – think tender steaks and the freshest seafood – while Spaccanapoli has pizzas that will have guests channeling their inner Italian.
Kaiseki has Japanese fare, Silver Note, the New York-style supper club reminiscent of the 1920’s has live jazz music, Atlantide has continental cuisine, La Terazza has delectable northern Italian cuisine, including the finest tiramisu, and La Dame has French cuisine in an elegant, formal setting with handmade Lalique crystal panels.
The S.A.L.T. (Sea and Land Taste) Kitchen debuted on Silversea’s Silver Moon and was the first large scale regional restaurant at sea. On Nova it was expanded and has two nightly menus. A Terrain menu inspired by the seasonal specialties at port – the night I dined, the menu was based on Zadar, Croatia – and a Voyage menu for eastern Mediterranean cuisine. I selected a starter from one and a main from the other to deliciously leave no culinary stone unturned.
Arguably the best dining experience at sea is S.A.L.T. Chef’s Table located in the gorgeously eye-popping S.A.L.T. Lab. By day, guests can partake in culinary instruction; by night it metamorphoses into a U-shaped, 18-seat, symphonically wine-paired, multi-course, small plate menu, focused on local ingredients providing an authentic, unforgettable, and intimate experience.
7. Wellness For All
While weight loss may not be on Silversea’s menu, weight gain is certainly not mandatory. The Nova has a large, state-of-the-art fitness center with floor-to-ceiling windows, Technogym equipment and free weights. There is also an outdoor walking/jogging path.
The Otivm Spa is over 3,330 square feet with a complete menu for both men and woman, such as a 100-minute experience utilizing salt stones, natural bamboo, and calabash to bask in “The Original Art of Comfort.” If guests wish to look younger on disembarkation, Nova offers medi-spa treatments such as Thermage skin tightening, and Dysport and Restylane fillers. An ocean facing thermal pool, sauna and steam rooms completes the lovely spa. The beauty salon is one of the largest I’ve seen at sea and likewise offers a full array of high-caliber services.
8. Excursions for the Curious
Regardless of where in the world you voyage on the Nova, there will be highly curated excursions to enjoy that allow a deep dive into the particular destination. I enjoyed a marvelous gastronomic experience in the Dalmation hinterlands of Sibenik in an old stone house where the proprietor had been born. Another day, I climbed into the Borgo Grotto with a fascinating guide who knew more about the incredible stalactites and stalagmites that I thought possible.
Wherever you journey on Silver Nova you will enjoy a novel ship like no other, dine to your heart’s content, and experience a way of traveling that will leave you spellbound for many moons to come.
Julie L. Kessler is a journalist, attorney, and the author of the award-winning memoir: “Fifty-Fifty, The Clarity of Hindsight.” Her work has appeared in several major publications, including The LA Times, The SF Examiner, The Asia Times, The Jerusalem Post, and The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, among many others. She can be reached at Julie@VagabondLawyer.com.
Written by Julie L. Kessler
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