Windstar's key selling point is that their welcoming ships are small enough to explore away from the crowds. In September, as Windstar resumed service, we were able to take a look at the remodelled Star Legend, with her new increased capacity of 312.
The new Star category balcony suites are beautifully appointed and spacious with a large walk-in shower and a new layout, with the living area in the middle and the bed close to the balcony, so the rooms feel even more spacious and open. The balcony is more like that of a river ship, French style, but on this little ship you are so close to the water you'd probably end up getting a bit wet on a traditional balcony.
The beautiful new look pool deck is a great place to relax with a good book, and we appreciated the upgraded Fitness and Motion Studios where complimentary fitness classes such as yoga and Pilates are held each day. Daytime entertainment included hosted trivia quizzes, Name That Tune, dance lessons and a battle of the chefs (the winner presenting an amazing broccoli poodle!).
When the location permits, the ship's marina will open and guests have the option to use the complimentary water toys such as kayaks and paddleboards, as well as a huge inflatable pillow tethered to the ship for jumping off into the sea, or just for sunbathing.
There are four restaurants. The main dining room, Amphora; the buffet restaurant for breakfast and lunch, Veranda; and the two speciality restaurants, Candles and the newest addition of Cuadro 44 by the ten-time Michelin-starred chef Anthony Sasso. We loved the way the décor immediately transported you to Spain, and the atmosphere with the open kitchen and family style table. The menu offers a number of small plates which are served tapas style to share, and some larger options for your main course. A real highlight was the Jamón Ibérico, and the paella croquetas served with a chorizo aioli.
The famous deck barbecue is a feast for all the guests on board, the sangria flowing and the atmosphere fantastic. Guests enjoy suckling pig, paella, salads, steaks, lobster and more. As the barbecue is cleared away, the entire entertainment team, not to mention many of the rest of the crew, are out in force with live music, and a bit of signature Windstar line dancing to create a very special party.
As the ship is small, the entertainment is low key but excellent, with a band and a duo who play at various venues. The entertainment director was also a classical singer and great performer, and local entertainers come on board in certain ports of call. The Crew Show is totally memorable. I think the whole ship made their way into the theatre for this and rightly so. I had heard about this before I joined the ship and was worried it was going to be a bit tacky… I was definitely wrong! There are some incredibly talented crew on board and, without spoiling the surprise, some acts left me crying with laughter.
New from Windstar is all-inclusive pricing, which includes unlimited wine, beer and cocktails, WiFi and all gratuities. But for those who prefer the 'pay as you go' system, that is a viable option too, and you can just ask for the 'all-inclusive' package to be removed when you book.