We had the opportunity in late September to sail on Atlas’s first and only ship at this stage for seven days. First of AOV is a new cruise line but with a very experienced parent that includes Mystic Cruises which owns and operates most of the cruises on the Duro River. They own the German brand Nicko Cruises who actually operates a sister ship to the World Navigator. There will be 2 more sister ships coming to AOV by 2023 with the second arriving in April 22.
This new cruise line is trying to be 5 Star and succeeding. The two leading figures here in Ft Lauderdale are from Silversea and Regent Backgrounds so they know what a 5 Star Cruise ship needs to do. This is a very well-funded venture that has the power to pull this off. Very wisely their first ship went to a different brand to work all the kinks out before entering the US market.
Our cruise was from Rome to Lisbon in 7 nights. The itinerary itself was very interesting especially covering this much ground in 7 nights. The facts about the ship first; This is an all-suite ship carrying 180 paxs, most of the cabins have either balconies or windows that rolling down to railing height to act as an infinity cabin, cabins range in size from 270 sq. ft. to 465 sq. ft. plus balcony. The bathrooms are very well appointed with L’Occitane amenities. All of the suites have rich woods and warm colors and excellent lighting. Suite has robes, slippers, safe and very good TV and movies. The mini bar is stocked and each cabin gets to select a bottle of spirits or wine pre-arrival.
This is an all-inclusive product which included wines with meals (premium list available at additional charge), spirits, coffees, waters, all meals and snacks, gratuities, taxes and fees, 1 shore tour per port call, Wi-Fi and 1 bag of laundry per 7 nights. During this cruise we had 3 Antigen tests all at no charge.
For a small ship it has some great features for groups and charters. The main dining room, Porto, can hold the entire ship PLUS an adjoining outdoor dining area of 70 seats. 7Aft is your deck restaurant for lunch and at night a New York style chophouse. Paula’s Pantry is your coffee shop with snacks and grab and go sandwiches or continental breakfast. There is also room service as an option.
The ship has two lounges which again hold the entire ship. The elegant Dome lounge gives you a 270 degree panoramic ocean view plus a glass dome. This is your late night view for the lite entertainment which actually pretty good for a small ship with an AGT finalists as the featured entertainer. The Atlas Lounge which holds the entire ship is great for pre-dinner beverages with live music.
There is also a Theater that holds the entire ship which is great for award presentations or featured speakers. There is a spa by L’Occitane (the first and only one at sea), at gift shop, and 5AFT which is a great space on Deck 5 aft for a private cocktail party for groups. If the boss wants to make a big entrance there is helicopter pad, you furnish the copter, that sure to get some attention.
I have read several reviews on the ship calling décor Retro Chic. The designers feel that they are creating a marriage of modern and vintage that leaves every space feeling every guest’s own personal haven. All the furniture and carpeting have been uniquely designed for this ship. There are rich colors with glossy mahogany and graphic marble designs. In short this ship is very, very classy but very comfortable. This is a 5 star ship.
Doing a cruise for 7 days gives a real opportunity to really experience the food and the service. All of the meals we had were first rate and on par with the best of ships. As a special plus for charterers you can do on deck buffets for the entire ship or just cocktails and canapes.
This was just the 4th cruise that ship had done so the service was a bit of work in progress but the crew went out of their way to accommodate any request. I am sure that by now they have the service down pat.
I highly recommend this ship for charters and for groups of 60 to 70 max. By 2022 there will be 2 ships and right now itineraries are very flexible with the Med being a high light for the summer of 22. Also think both poles, Greenland and Iceland.