Paul Gauguin Cruises: Voyages to the Soul of the South Seas

Paul Gauguin Cruises
Paul Gauguin Cruises: Voyages to the Soul of the South SeasCourtesy of Paul Gauguin

Scattered like emeralds across the turquoise waters of the South Pacific, the islands and atolls of French Polynesia are unmatched in their allure. Here await sun-kissed beaches, lush rain forests, and barrier reefs teeming with Technicolor sea life, as well as intriguing cultures immortalized by novelist James Michener, songwriters Rodgers and Hammerstein, and artist Paul Gauguin.

The m/s Paul Gauguin takes its name from the French painter who spent the last years of his life in Tahiti. The intimate 332-guest vessel was specifically designed to cruise the South Pacific and sails these storied isles year-round, navigating shallow waters as nimbly as a yacht.

The ship's informal ambience reflects the relaxed nature of the region. A much-loved troupe known as Les Gauguines — Tahitians who serve as staff, entertainers and storytellers — add a uniquely South Pacific touch to life on board. Best of all, The Gauguin offers an all-inclusive experience, with airfare from Los Angeles, gratuities, 24-hour room service, bottled water, soft drinks, and select wines and spirits all included in the cruise fare.

All suites and staterooms feature ocean views, and nearly 70 percent have private balconies. Guests who book category B suites or higher receive in-suite bar service, an iPod® music system, and the service of a butler who can unpack your bags, make appointments for you at the spa, or arrange a private car or lunch reservation in port.

A crew-to-guest ratio of 1 to 1.5 ensures the highest level of personal attention. The maitre d’ will remember your favorite table, and your stateroom stewardess will fill your fruit basket with the ripe fruits you prefer.

The exclusive treatment continues ashore. Guests enjoy a day on the cruise line's private isle, Motu Mahana, complete with snorkeling, full bar service, and a barbecue with Polynesian entertainment. The ship also features a retractable watersports marina from which you can kayak or windsurf. Or set out in the Zodiac® for an optional diving excursion; The Gauguin is the only luxury ship in French Polynesia to offer PADI certification onboard.

In 2012, Paris Chef Jean-Pierre Vigato, Chef Propriétaire of the world-renowned, two-star Michelin-rated Restaurant Apicius will continue to create signature dishes and menus to be featured aboard ship. The three dining venues range from elegant traditional to casual al fresco, and all offer open seating.

Nightly entertainment in Le Grand Salon draws upon the traditions of the South Pacific. Listen to the a cappella harmonies of himene — formal Tahitian choral songs — or watch a riveting performance of the otea, a complex line dance accompanied by drums. Singers croon as couples take a spin on the dance floor in La Palette, the observation lounge at the top of the ship, while a casino and piano bar round out the options for evening diversions.

Paul Gauguin Cruises is also pleased to welcome special guest hosts representing a wide variety of special interests aboard upcoming sailings. Whether you’re interested in art, wine, cuisine, Polynesian life and culture, or the wonders of the deep, we have arranged for an experts to join us on designated cruises, to offer insights, lectures, demonstrations, workshops, and more. Perhaps you'll have dinner with one of these special experts, view a demonstration of their craft, enjoy a wine tasting, and more.

Some of these special sailings you may enjoy include a whale watching cruise to the untouched Austral Island of Rurutu which is a sanctuary for humpback whales, Astronomy buffs behold the last Transit of Venus to occur in our lifetime, or join Celebrity Chef and renowned humanitarian Art Smith and enjoy cooking demonstrations and the opportunity to meet one of America's most celebrated chefs in person.

We also frequently feature limited-time exhibits of paintings and photography by respected Polynesian artists, so you can see up close and firsthand how the singular qualities of light and beauty here inspire the creative imagination.

Voyages of 7 to 14 nights are available aboard The Gauguin in 2012 and encompass the Society Islands of Tahiti, Raiatea, Bora Bora, Moorea, Huahine, and the private island of Motu Mahana, as well as select islands in the Tuamotus, Cook Islands, Fiji, Tonga, Australs and Marquesas archipelagos.

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Recent Awards for The Gauguin include:

One of the World’s Top-Rated Luxury Cruise Ships

"Top 5 Small Luxury Cruise Ship,"_
Condé Nast Traveler_, Readers' Poll (2011)

"Best Small Ship – 3rd Overall, #1 in Dining"_
Cruise Critic_, Cruisers' Choice Awards (2011)

"Best South Pacific Itineraries," Porthole,
Readers' Choice Awards (2010, 2007, 2006)

Gold Magellan Award, Small Cruise Ship Category,_
Travel Weekly_ (2010)

6-Star Rating, Stern's Guide to the Cruise Vacation (2011)

5+-Ribbon Rating, Cruise Critic (2011)

Top-Rated for Romance

"Best for Couples," Cruise Critic,
Editor's Pick Awards (2011)

"Best for a Second Honeymoon," Cruise Critic,
Editor's Pick Awards (2010)

All sailings in 2012 aboard The Gauguin boast 50% off standard cruise fares and include roundtrip airfare from Los Angeles. In addition, Paul Gauguin Cruises is having a** phenomenal 2-Week Sale. Book by October 8, 2011 and save up to $4,220.** For details visit www.pgcruises.com/offers, or call 877-495-0865.** **

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