saga ruby - saga cruises - cruise ship review & photos


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Saga Ruby - Saga Cruises - cruise ship review and photos.

She is one of the grand ladies of ocean cruising. Originally designed for a combination of transatlantic crossings and worldwide cruises, Saga Ruby started her career in 1973 as Vistafjord. After a spell as Cunard's Caronia, UK based Saga Cruises bought the ship in 2004 and threw in a multi-million dollar refurbishment program that turned their new Saga Ruby into a 'classic elegant' lady.

Saga Ruby at Amsterdam on May 20, 2007

Back in 1985, I had the opportunity to sail on Cunard's highly-acclaimed Vistafjord on a short cruise from Hamburg to Southampton. I was thrilled to sample the five-star service and cuisine on board this elegant liner. Now, 22 years later, Vistafjord has found a new home in the Saga fleet. This large British company (active in everything from insurance to travel) operates

two classic cruise ships and one semi-expedition vessel and targets the buoyant senior market. In fact, you must be over 55 to sail on Saga Ruby and her fleet mate Saga Rose so expect the average age on board to be high. Saga Ruby's cruises usually start and finish in the UK and all but a few voyages are under two weeks.

Curious to see how the former Vistafjord is doing in Saga colors, I ventured to Amsterdam on a sunny Sunday in May to visit this traditional ocean liner. And what joy it was to re-acquaint myself with this handsome lady that has never looked better.

Cruise Line: Saga Cruises
Built: 1973
Building Yard: Swan Hunter, UK
Gross Tonnage: 24,492
Length: 191.1 m (626.9 ft)
Beam: 25.0 m (82.1 ft)
Passengers (norm.): 666
Passengers (max): 668
Crew: 379
Service speed: 21.0 knots
Sister ships: -
Saga Ruby transiting the North Sea Canal on August 28, 2006
Saga Ruby docked at Copenhagen, Denmark
Saga Ruby docked at Amsterdam, Netherlands on May 20, 2007
Saga Ruby at Copenhagen, Denmark
Looking splendid in Saga's royal blue and yellow livery


All photos and text: 2007 Bart de Boer -

First published on July 13, 2007

Amenities, decor, charges and services may have changed since this article was written

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