Australians love their cruises. That’s a given. Some of us are wedded to a particular favourite cruise line, while others are looking around the world for new destinations and experiences.
Dream Cruises are a new brand of cruise line offering high-end cruises out of Singapore and Hong Kong with two ships built in Germany and launched in 2016 and 2017. The same company, Genting, which operates the popular Star Cruises and has recently purchased the super luxury Crystal Cruises, built the two in Germany.
Genting Dream was launched first, followed by her twin sister, World Dream, with both 335 m, 3400-guest vessels intended for cruising exclusively in Asian waters. World Dream is based out of Hong Kong, while her sister calls Singapore home. Each one operates two-, three- and five-night itineraries out of their home ports, which include destinations in Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia.
Your clever cruise agent can string these pearls together to make a 12-night itinerary and really make a holiday out of it and still have time for pre- and post- tours in these exciting Asian cities.
The ships themselves are exciting alternatives to those offered in our local waters. Brand new, with the latest technologies and creature comforts, these ships really are suitable for the entire family with myriad dining and entertainment options.
Best at sea
One of Australia’s most acclaimed chefs, Mark Best (ex-Marque and Pei Modern), opened his first eatery at sea, Bistro by Mark Best. Featuring superb Western cuisine, Best makes use of both local and imported ingredients including Australian beef – in contrast to the big American brands, which fly in US meat for all their ships.
As you can imagine, Asian cuisine features prominently on both ships and there is a huge choice for Asian food-loving Aussies to explore. For example, the Food Federation venue
is a nod to the famous street food cultures in all Asian cities with choices like bak kut teh from Malaysia, curry laksa from Singapore and Hainanese chicken rice among the many Chinese favourites set up in a traditional hawker-style setting.
For those who might enjoy a tipple before or after dinner, the bar alternatives are both varied and sophisticated. In Johnnie Walker House you can indulge your passion for the finest whiskies or celebrate something – anything – at Bubbles with exclusive sparkling wines and Champagne. Mixt cocktail bar is as much entertainment as it is sumptuous cocktails, with all the latest extractors and centrifuges preparing your favourite cocktail or one you’ve never tried before.
Sanctuaries at sea
Beyond the regular attractions of these superb ships, Dream Cruises have perfected the ‘ship-within-a-ship’ concept with lessons learned from its luxury partner, Crystal Cruises. Dream Palace offers discerning travellers an exclusive enclave away from the hurly-burly of the main areas. This peaceful sanctuary can be compared to a boutique hotel or a private clubhouse with such luxuries as white-gloved European butler service, preferential bookings at specialty restaurants and shore excursions.
About 150 suites and staterooms are set aside on both vessels for The Palace experience with every guest enjoying access to a private sundeck, gymnasium and spa. For that ultimate experience or any extra special celebration, enjoy the sumptuous Palace Villa. With 224 sq. m of indulgent space, these mini-mansions each feature their own whirlpool spa, terrace balcony and even a grand piano.
The inside tip for Australians wanting to sample Dream Cruises for the first time is to choose from the range of Singapore departures where Genting Dream is homeported. The bustling, clean and safe multicultural metropolis already has close ties to Australia and is a relatively easy city to negotiate with an excellent transport network, superb hotels and plenty of attractions for all ages to enjoy. This international hub already sees passengers of many English-speaking and European nationalities enjoy Dream Cruises to such ports as Phuket, Langkawi, Sihanoukville and Bangkok.
What’s more, when you compare Dream Cruises fares with other leading cruise lines, you will be pleasantly surprised, especially if you catch one of the many discount offers available. Or, check out the two for one plus balcony upgrade deals onboard Genting Dream for certain itineraries out of Singapore.
With two more Global Class ships on the way in 2020 and 2021, Genting’s Dream offerings in Asia are here to stay. •
Photography courtesy of Dream Cruises.
Dream Cruises: 1300-658-666; dreamcruiseline.com