All aboard: Windstar Cruises, the leader in small ship cruising

Windstar Cruises is an award-winning, globally diversified travel company offering once in a lifetime experiences in some of the most beautiful and iconic places on earth.

Established as Windstar Sail Cruises in 1984, Windstar Cruises offers luxury cruising aboard six masted sailing ships and all-suite motor ships. The award-winning line is known for immersive experiences, destination authenticity, port-intensive itineraries, exceptional service, and an innovative culinary program.

Windstar Cruises provides luxury travelers the option of an all-inclusive price for all of its sailings or an à la carte cruise option for those who enjoy the freedom to choose. The all-inclusive option includes unlimited wine, beer, and cocktails; Wi-Fi; all gratuities; as well as the cruise fare.

6 small luxury ships
windstar cruises

The line’s first ship, Wind Star, was launched in 1986, followed by Wind Song in 1987 and Wind Spirit in 1988. Both Wind Star and Wind Spirit sail with the company today. In 1998, Windstar acquired the sail cruiser Club Med I from Club Med Cruises and rechristened her as Wind Surf. The ship is the largest sailing ship in the world. She is two football fields long and has five masts, towering 221 feet and supporting 26,881 sq. feet of sails. Her speed record under sail power alone is 15.8 knots.

In 2013 Windstar doubled the size of its fleet by purchasing three ships from Seabourn. The yachts were renovated, and Star Pride joined the fleet in 2014, with Star Breeze and Star Legend making their debut in 2015.

The Star class ships were recently ‘stretched’ by adding a new 84 feet (25.6 meters) section, allowing the company to add 50 new suites and take guest capacity from 212 to 312. The work also included the addition of state-of-the-art public spaces including two new dining locations; new shop and retail space; an enlarged fitness center and a new world-class spa. Furthermore the $250 Million Star Plus Initiative involved removing and replacing the engines to ensure a cleaner, more environmentally-friendly operation as the ships sail through some of the world’s most beautiful waters and call at small, enchanting ports.


Windstar’s fleet is the market leader in small ship cruising calling on more than 330 off-the-beaten-path and popular ports in nearly 80 countries across the world. The boutique line caters to between 148 and 342 guests on each sailing.

Windstar’s ships can enter ports that are inaccessible to larger cruise liners, meaning the cruise line can visit more off-the-beaten-path and unique ports, like Barbuda, Montserrat, Wrangell, and Vinuatu. Also due to their small size, the ships can dock in the heart of major ports (like Old Town Dubrovnik) as larger cruise ships pass by.

Windstar has a unique Open Bridge Policy, meaning guests can wander onto the bridge when the ship is at sea, chat with the crew and even sit down and enjoy a cup of Windstar’s exclusive Bridge Blend coffee with the captain.

When anchored in many locations, guests can swim, kayak, snorkel and paddleboard right from the Watersports Platform on the back of the yacht.

Windstar Cruises

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