You won’t go hungry when you’re at sea with Virgin Voyages – they’ve just announced the breadth of their on board eateries.
With more than 20 food choices on board Virgin Voyages’ first ship, Scarlet Lady, there’s something for all tastes. And the best part is they’ve ditched the traditional upcharges imposed when dining in speciality restaurants at sea – all the food options on board are made to order and included in the cost of your voyage.
In fact, Virgin Voyages has completely thrown out the traditional cruise dining rule book. There’ll be no buffet, no main dining room, no forced formal wear, no assigned seating, and no set dining times. Instead you’ll find more choice, and more opportunity to grab some food, with restaurant doors open until well into the night and, in some cases, the early hours of the morning.
From experimental and haute cuisine to healthy, quick bite options, the on board eateries will give sailors the opportunity to discover something new or enjoy an old favourite. Sailors can dine at a table or opt to enjoy their meal at the bar, with nearly all restaurants on board featuring a bar. Each restaurant will be helmed by a leading chef who leads their kitchen with passion and artfulness. With a made-to-order philosophy around food, Virgin Voyages pledges to never have to sacrifice quality for a quick bite.
So what can you expect from the food options on board?
Designed by Roman and Williams, Wake offers sailors a dramatic view of the ship’s wake. Serving a theatrical take on steak and seafood, Wake is the most glamorous restaurant on the ship, with a dramatic grand staircase entryway.
With an interior scheme that nods to the namesake, the bold camouflaging of ships from WWI using patterns of black and white paint, Razzle Dazzle was designed by Concrete Amsterdam. With vibrant and creative twists on vegetarian fare and a juice bar. The “nice” menu offers plant-based vegetarian and vegan dishes including must have muchies such as the Impossible Burger. The “naughty” side enables sailors to order meat “add-ons” and offers to spike their healthy smoothies with boozy shots. To live up to the boldness of its name, Razzle Dazzle will not simply brunch but rather Drag Brunch, where sailors are treated to a performance by the Scarlet Lady’s resident drag performer and friends.
THE TEST KITCHEN
Designed by Concrete Amsterdam and inspired by Escoffier’s Ma Cuisine, this laboratory-like eatery is part cooking school and part restaurant, making it the ultimate place for discovery through cuisine with an atmosphere that is educational, experiential and social all in one. The chef-driven set menus are presented in the form of an ingredient list to Sailors who will discover how the chef combines the list of flavours throughout the course of the meal.
The equivalent of the expression bottoms up in Korean, is a Korean BBQ restaurant designed by Soft Room. Hosted by the loudest servers at sea, each meal will begin with a complimentary round of soju for the table and throughout the evening sailors are encouraged to take part in lively Korean drinking games.
An elevated Mexican restaurant designed by Tom Dixon, Pink Agave transports sailors to the vibrant streets of Mexico City through immersive void lighting. Offering a wide variety of Mexican specialties that inspire sailors to discover authentic Mexican flavors including tlayudas, memelas, sopes, tortas, esquites, and tamales.
Extra Virgin is the ships trattoria serving regionally-inspired and approachable food, deeply rooted in Italian culinary traditions with handmade fresh pasta made daily. A meal begins with shared antipasti followed by approachable pasta-centric favorites.
Set in the ship’s sun-dappled lounging area at the aft of the ship on deck seven, The Dock is a beach club-inspired space designed by Roman and Williams. Carts of Mediterranean small plates, salads, dips and mezzes provide perfect graving options throughout the day.
Modeled on popular food halls where visitors can taste a cornucopia from different restaurants, The Galley will be the main space for the quick and casual meal throughout the day. The food hall will feature a mix of more than eight shops and food carts, each offering a unique concept with irresistible signature dishes that changes to suit the time of day. The Galley’s concepts include a dedicated bakery and pastry shop, a panini shop, a burger grill, a taco shack, a sushi bar with bento boxes, a noodle bar, a soup and salad stand, and a 24-hour American diner.
THE PIZZA PLACE
Sailors can choose from the classic menu, or allow them to design their very own bespoke pizza and pies.
More details on what to expect from Virgin Voyages will be revealed throughout the coming year, but if you want to know more, take a look at the recently revealed tattoo parlour offering a permanent memento of your trip.
Virgin Voyages has revealed that its first ship, Scarlet Lady, will bring stylish tattoo artistry to the high sea with Squid Ink, an on board tattoo parlour.
To create the one-of-a-kind experience on board, the cruise line has teamed up with the ink industry legends from World Famous Tattoo Ink.
“Tattooing is a time-honoured seafaring tradition and we’re continuing that legacy with rock and roll style by bringing some of the best ink artists to sea,” Tom McAlpin, president and CEO of Virgin Voyages, said. “Our sailors are looking to make lifelong memories, and we think there’s no better way to commemorate their first voyage with us than with a souvenir they’ll never lose track of.”
To celebrate the news, Virgin Voyages is teaming up with World Famous Tatoo Ink to give away 100 free nautical-inspired micro tattoos this Saturday (October 20th) at Soho Ink in Manhattan, New York City.
The first 100 people to head to Soho Ink at 12pm on October 20th will be able to choose one of 10 nautical-inspired micro tattoos to ink themselves with, and all who receive one of these tattoos will be entered to win a one in 100 chance to win a free Virgin voyage for two. Sailors who cannot make it to Soho Ink this Saturday can also enter to win a free voyage (and a free nautical-inspired micro tattoo while onboard) now until November 16th by visiting the Virgin Voyages website.
When Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady sets sail in 2020, she will have two full-time resident tattoo artists on board, handpicked by ink industry legend Lou Rubino Jr, the visionary behind World Famous Tattoo Ink, Soho Ink and Freshly Inked Magazine.
Squid Ink will also feature a star-studded line-up of guest artists including the tattoo industry’s most sought-after trendsetters and celebrity artists. Details and timings will be announced in due course but renowned artists including the likes of Spike TV’s Ink Master star Sarah Miller, surrealist specialist artist Arlo DiCristina and illustrative specialist Jime Litwalk have already committed to guest artist appearances on the Scarlet Lady in 2020.
“The World Famous Tattoo Ink family has been working with sailors, pirates and rock stars for more than 50 years,” said Lou Rubino Jr., owner of World Famous Tattoo Ink. “As global acceptance of tattoos and body art continues to grow, partnering with Virgin Voyages gives us the unique opportunity to bring colour to places people might have never thought possible before. We couldn’t be more excited to leave our mark on the sea travel industry.”
All Squid Ink tattoos will be created with World Famous Tattoo Ink original vegan ink, which is globally recognized to exceed safety standards with no animal by-products or testing. In addition to tattoos, Squid Ink will also offer body piercings as well as permanent makeup treatments using vegan-friendly Perma Blend pigments.
Virgin Voyages will encourage its crew members to also express themselves freely through tattoos if they wish. In a unique move for the cruise industry, the company has indicated that the hiring of shipboard candidates with visible tattoos is a-okay.
For more on Virgin Voyages, head to the website or follow @virginvoyages on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
Delighted to share that Cuba will be the first destination for Virgin Voyages, our new cruise line. When Scarlet Lady sets sail for her inaugural season from Miami in 2020, Havana will be one of the destinations we visit.
Virgin always listens to our customers, and this decision was no different. We used research from customers as well as travel partners in the US and UK to learn that Cuba is one of the places voyagers would most like to visit.
Having got the chance to enjoy a fascinating trip to Cuba myself last year, I can certainly see why. Virgin Atlantic has been flying to Cuba for 13 years and I’ve got to visit before. But it was a huge pleasure joining Virgin Voyages CEO Tom McAlpin in Havana to develop the plans we’re announcing today, taking time to enjoy local landmarks like the famous Hotel Nacional while we were there.
I cannot wait to see our iconic Scarlet Lady gleaming in the Havana Harbour. Havana is the perfect place for our sailors to go and experience a city that exudes an irresistible energy and passion. All sailings to Cuba from Miami will feature an overnight stay, so our sailors will have time to really explore and experience Havana’s unique atmosphere.
Scarlet Lady will set sail to the Caribbean with more than 2,770 sailors and 1,150 wonderful crew from around the world on board – it’s going to be one special maiden voyage.
We’ll share more and more details, from onboard features to designs and experiences, as we get closer to opening up Virgin Voyages bookings next year. In the meantime head over to Virgin Voyages on social for more shipteases.