VACAYA LUXE GREEK ISLES CRUISE ON PONANT LE BOUGAINVILLE
AUG 18-25, 2022

Our journey to the Greek Isles begins in:

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Luxe is grand, refined, bold, intimate, calm, exotic, cool, treasured

The Vacayans are hard at work planning each and every detail of this amazing cruise. And of course, we’re super excited to share many of those details with you along the way. As we have new information to share, you’ll find it here.

We’ll also house an email archive on this page, too. This archive will feature all the trip-specific communications we have with you throughout your pre-cruise experience with us. That way, if you happen to lose a general email somewhere along the way, you’ll be able to find it right here.

And from cocktail party themes and entertainment previews, VACAYA’s mission is to give you everything you need with plenty of time to ensure a totally stress-free experience. Get ready for your vacaya!

We’re often asked, “What should we expect from a VACAYA Luxe experience?” Our Luxe vacations are an unapologetically exclusive celebration of the wonders of our planet – welcoming to all, of course, but built for discerning travelers seeking intimate experiences, splendid accommodations, and unparalleled service. They’ll reach the far corners of the globe – giving VACAYA guests an opportunity to expand their horizons in completely new ways.

The VACAYA Luxe rhythm is… Bold. Refined. Intimate. Exotic. Treasured. Calm. Cool. Grand. A chance to live life to the absolute fullest.


 

PAGE DIRECTORY

AIRLINE DISCOUNTS

As a VACAYA guest, discounts are available to you with various air carriers when booking your flights using our Group Codes/Links. Those codes/links, as well as the instructions for booking, can be found HERE.

CLOTHING OPTIONAL SUN DECK

Deck 7 Aft has been designated a Clothing Optional Sun Deck. There are around 15 chaise loungers in the area.

Please, no cameras.

CURRENCY

The currency of Greece is the Euro. The exchange rate as of March 2022 is:

1 US Dollar = 0.91 Euro

1 Euro = 1.10 US Dollars

DOCKING LOCATION

We will know the exact docking location of Le Bougainville approximately 30 days before sailing.

EMAIL ARCHIVE

All emails to our Booked Guests can be found here:

April 19, 2022 – 120 Days to Go: Party Themes announced!

April 15, 2022 – Passport Information Needed

 

 

EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBERS FOR LE BOUGAINVILLE

If you ever need to reach Le Bougainville from ashore during the course of our cruise, here are the emergency numbers:

  • Reception: +47 23 39 89 44  or  +47 23 39 89 45  or  +47 23 39 89 46
  • Hotel Manager: +33 6 07 28 53 20
ENTERTAINMENT PREVIEW

Approximately 60 days before our cruise, we’ll preview the fabulous entertainment line-up we’ll have with us for our journey.

EXCURSIONS

We’re currently working with the PONANT team to offer you an exciting line-up of excursions in each of our ports of call. As soon as they’re locked, we’ll preview them here.

A few things to keep in mind regarding our visit to Mykonos on Fri, Aug 19:

Mykonos is quite special and we want to ensure you’re ready for all that’s in store. Le Bougainville will be relatively quiet this night since nearly everyone will be ashore, so you’ll want to take that into account as you start to scope out your day and night.

You may have heard… XLSIOR Mykonos is taking place on the island Aug 17-24 and over 30,000 gays will be in attendance. Learn more about XLSIOR HERE. Only full-week event passes are sold in advance. So if you’d like to guarantee attendance for the events on the evening of Fri, Aug 19 (the night we’re there), you’ll be required to purchase a week-long pass. That being said, XLSIOR may offer tickets at the door for individual events, but that will be entirely dependent on Covid regulations at the time. According to XLSIOR, all guests with week-long event tickets will be allowed in each venue without restriction.

With 30,000 gays from around the world descending on Mykonos, the island will be abuzz with activity. That means a little advance planning is required to make the most of your time there. We arrive in Mykonos at 1pm on Fri, Aug 19 and will be there until 6am on Sat, Aug 20. That gives you a full afternoon, evening, and overnight to play!

Many of you will no doubt spend the day wandering through the fabled white, blue, and narrow streets of Mykonos Town, with its nearly endless restaurants and tavernas. A few of our favorites include:

  • To Maereio – Ν. Kalogera 16, Mykonos Town, Mikonos 846 00, Greece
  • Caesars – Goumenio Square, Mykonos Town, Mikonos 846 00, Greece
  • Nautilus – Μύκονος, Mykonos Town, Mikonos 846 00, Greece
  • Kalita – N. Kalogera 31, Mykonos Town, Mikonos 846 00, Greece

While dinner reservations can be hard to come by, if they’re offered, we highly recommend having one. Typically in Greece, locals and European tourists alike eat late – as in 9pm or later. Therefore, to avoid the inevitable rush, we recommend dining earlier. Yeah, in doing so you’re likely to get a random “you must be American” once or twice, but that’s a small price to pay to have a table.

If you’re looking for an afternoon beach experience, we recommend either Pinky Beach or Jackie O’ Beach Club. Reservations are required at each.

  • To reserve a sunbed at Pinky Beach, visit HERE.
  • To reserve a spot at Jackie O’ Beach Club, visit HERE.

In addition, we also recommend Mykonos’ famed clothing optional Elia Beach. The beach is about a 20-minute taxi or shuttle ride from the ship and you can catch a taxi from the pier or from Mykonos Town. Ponant will also offer a transfer excursion to Elia Beach and we expect that to be a popular way to get there. If you do choose to go on your own, be sure to arrange return taxi pick-up from the beach back to Mykonos Town with your driver.

Friday night is the perfect night to be in Mykonos as the island’s piano and dance bars come to life! No night on the town is complete without stops at:

 

We know you’re going to absolutely love your time in Greece with VACAYA and PONANT and you’ll have an even better time with a little advance planning. If you’re not the planning type, that’s ok, just know you’ll have a few challenges getting into places on Mykonos on the evening of Friday, Aug 19.

GRATUITIES

You have pre-paid basic gratuities. However, if someone goes above and beyond for you, you are more than welcome to offer them a few dollars/Euro (or more if appropriate) as an extended note of appreciation and grace. Collectively, those small thank yous add up and can make all the difference in the lives of these hard-working crew members.

Recommended tipping for excursion guides/drivers is as follows:

Half Day – 5 Euro per person

Full Day – 10 Euro per person

HOTEL RECOMMENDATIONS

Our recommended hotel in Athens is the Radisson Blu Park Hotel. You can book the Radisson Blu Park Hotel at a discount by following these simple instructions:

  • Go to https://www.radissonhotels.com/
  • Choose your destination (Athens) and your travel dates
  • Under “Special rates” select “Travel agency ID” from the dropdown menu
  • Enter code 33584202
  • Click SEARCH
  • Look for the Radisson Blu Park Hotel, Athens
  • You’re now on your way to SAVINGS as you take advantage of the best rates at Radisson Blu you’ll find anywhere!

 

IMPORTANT PHONE NUMBERS

Onboard Le Bougainville:

Reception – 999

Medical Center – 909 (dial 999 if there’s no answer)

Spa – 770

 

While Ashore in Greece:

Greece’s version of 911 (for emergencies only) is 112. If you need to reach the Police, dial 100. For an Ambulance, dial 166.

INCLUDED BEVERAGES

Standard drinks are included for all guests. That’s house spirits, beer, select wines by the glass, sodas, juices, bottled waters, and specialty coffee drinks/teas.

Wines by the bottle are available for purchase from any of the bars or from your sommelier in the main restaurant.

PONANT sells a premium beverage package onboard that gives guests access to several available top-shelf alcohols (as designated in their bar menu onboard). That upgrade is 20 Euro per person per day and can be purchased from any bartender on Day 1.

LAUNDRY

With so many of you extending your time in Greece, laundry services are available aboard Le Bougainville.

You’ll find laundry pricing, bags, and slips inside your stateroom. During your entire cruise, your steward or stewardess will be available for laundry and ironing services, which will be completed within 48-72 hours. You can contact PONANT for specifics on pricing at 888.400.1082.

LOST & FOUND

Lost & Found is located at Reception on Deck 3. If you’re missing anything, be sure to check there first. And of course if you find anything, be sure to turn it into Reception so they can get it back to its owner with haste.

LUGGAGE

When first arriving to Le Bougainville, you’ll hand over your larger bags to the porters on the dock. They will wipe down all bags before taking them on the ship. They will be delivered straight away to your stateroom. Please make sure that all of your bags are delivered to your room. Should you need help or if you received bags not belonging to you, please contact Reception on Deck 3 or dial 999 from your in-room phone.

MEDICAL EQUIPMENT ONBOARD

PONANT is renowned to have health care’s latest generation of equipment onboard their ships.

They also go beyond industry standards with the following additional provisions:

  1. The onboard Medical Team consists of one Physician and one Nurse, but the team can be scaled up at any time, if required. The inhouse Medical Team is available 24/7.
  2. Rapid diagnostic medical equipment in an isolated environment, with mobile laboratory terminals, allowing to test all common infectious diseases, potentially dangerous or contagious, tropical diseases, as well as cardiac distress syndromes.
  3. “Shore-hospital-like” professional diagnostic equipment: ultrasound, radiology, and blood biological analysis.
  4. Facilities for the management of respiratory distress
    • 3x 40ltr bottles of O2 to last 80 hours to 5 ltr/min or 200 to 2 ltr/min distributed in fixed general circuit
    • 5 portable 5-l bottles to last 6 hours to 2 ltr/mm
    • 1 O2 extractor
    • 2 respirators
    • Intubation kits
    • Intubation drugs
    • Resuscitation solute
  5. Pharmacy, which has been leveled up with specific Covid-19 dotation
  6. Specific training and drills performed regularly
  7. EVASAN (evacuation) plan ready at all times in case of emergency
  8. Infrastructure
    • 1 resuscitation bed
    • 1 intra-hospital isolation room

Additional COVID Considerations

Continuous Control of Temperatures: Two thermic cameras will check the body temperature of all passengers and crew when passing by. Both will be placed at maximum transit points of guests and crew.

Two PCR Test Biologic Devices available onboard, with enough reactant for testing all guests.

The PCR testing of guests and crew will be implemented only if necessary. The doctor will be in charge for conducting the sampling and use of machine for testing. The positive results of diagnosis will be shared with CCMM (Maritime Medical Coordination Center in Toulouse, France), who will decide the next steps for managing the patient and their evacuation.

Isolation Staterooms: 5 staterooms are being held as “isolation rooms” in case of quarantine needs.

PARTY THEMES

Since the DESTINATION is always the star on VACAYA Luxe vacations, we try to keep things nice and easy on Luxe trips. We understand the burden of having to carry costumes halfway around the world. That being said, we will have a few themed days and nights. Parties on our smaller Luxe trips are more of the cocktail variety, but they’re cocktail parties for movers and shakers. So if you wanna dance, do your thing!

Our promise to you is to release party themes a full 120 days before each of our trips. So without any further ado, here are your party themes for our 2022 Greek Isles Cruise:

 

THIS IS ME

It’s Night One and we want to know who you are and where you’re from! Come mix and mingle with fellow cruisers as we kick off the week’s festivities. Wear a little something to show us your hometown pride!

 

 

BATHROBES AFTER DARK

A VACAYA Luxe tradition! Tonight, we throw on our bathrobes and spend the entire evening be-robed for pre-dinner cocktails, dinner, the show, and the party after! This one’s easy… just throw on the bathrobe from your stateroom. And if you need another one, your room attendant can help out.

 

 

MAMMA MIA 80s NIGHT!

It’s the ULTIMATE tribute to ABBA as Cruise Director Marti hosts a Mamma Mia sing-along as we sail near the Greek islands where the movie was filmed. After the sing-along, we’ll hit the Main Lounge and Pool Deck for a fabulous ABBA-inspired 80s set brought to you by JOJO!

 

 

APHRODITE NIGHTY PARTY

It’s the ultimate underwear party for gods and monsters, a tale of myths and legends and skivvies! If you’ve got voluptuous Aphrodite curves, let’s see your best nighty!

 

 

GELA GALA: A GREEK BATH PARTY

One of our favorite things about Greece is the public baths it’s inspired. So today, we celebrate one of the most famous, Gela Bath, as we throw on a towel and hit the pool deck!

POOL & MARINA

Le Bougainville’s heated pool is located on Deck 3 Aft and is kept at a comfy 92°/33°.

The Marina, which is one of the locations where we board our tenders, is located on Deck 2 just below the pool all the way aft. It provides the perfect spacious launching point for all of our adventures ashore where tenders are required. You’ll access the Marina via Deck 3.

POST-CRUISE COVID TESTING

In August, if Covid tests are still required to return to your home country, we will provide your testing options here.

POST-CRUISE SANTORINI EXTENSION

For those guests participating in our sold out post-cruise Santorini add-on, our round-trip flights from Athens to Santorini have now been secured. They are as follows:

  • On August 25 – Aegean Air Flight 336, leaving Athens (ATH) @ 1:30pm, arriving in Santorini (JTR) @ 2:20pm
  • On August 28 – Aegean Air Flight 355, leaving Santorini @ 11:35am, arriving in Athens @ 12:20pm

One checked bag up to 50 lbs. is included with your booking.

Details about our Santorini add-on can be found HERE.

PRE-CRUISE COVID TESTING

We will provide details for any required pre-cruise testing here approximately 30 days before our cruise.

ROOM KEY

Your onboard magnetic card (we point out it’s magnetic to warn against placing it too close to your mobile phone, which could erase the information), which will be handed to you upon boarding is your room key. It’s also your onboard charge card and you’ll be asked for it to make onboard purchases. Whenever you leave the ship or re-board it in our ports of call, you’ll show your card to Security when leaving/returning.

When you board, you’ll want to register a credit card with Reception to cover any onboard purchases. You’ll receive a final invoice in your room on the last evening of your cruise. Assuming all of the charges are correct (and if not, be sure to speak with Reception), your card on file with PONANT will be automatically charged the morning of disembarkation. If you’d prefer to pay cash to close out your account, you will need to do that on our last night before they charge your card the following morning.

SAFETY PROTOCOLS

ALL GUESTS ARE REQUIRED TO BE VACCINATED AND BOOSTED AGAINST COVID-19, with your last shot at least 14 days before we board.

All of PONANT’s current protocols can be found HERE. We will announce the protocols that will likely be in place for our cruise about 30 days before we sail.

MOST of these protocols are happening behind the scenes to minimize interruptions to the experience. So know that whatever the protocols may be, we are going to have a great time exploring Greece together. #AdaptToLive 

SMOKING ONBOARD

Le Bougainville is a NON-SMOKING ship. Smoking – including eCigarettes & Vape Pens – is not permitted in staterooms, on balconies, or in any public rooms. A small smoking area has been established on Deck 3 Aft, where ashtrays have been placed. Please respect this area. And of course NEVER throw cigarette butts overboard. They can easily get sucked into the ship’s ventilation system and cause a fire.

SPA & FITNESS CENTER

The Spa’s beauticians and masseuses are at your service on Deck 7 Aft and offer a wide range of treatments that can be booked once onboard. The Spa is typically open 9am to 8pm, but that could change slightly depending on our port times. Check your Daily Program (delivered to your stateroom each night with the following day’s schedule) for exact times.

Le Bougainville’s Fitness Center, also on Deck 7 near the Spa, is open 24 hours a day and contains several cardio machines for your use. There are no free weights in the ship’s Fitness Center. We recommend packing lightweight stretch bands that are great for resistance training, if needed.

TOILETS

Le Bougainville has a state-of-the-art sewage treatment plant onboard, which helps PONANT preserve the pristine waters through which we sail. To assure it can properly do its job, we need your full cooperation.

  • Only use the biodegradable toilet tissue provided.
  • Do not flush facial tissues, sanitary wipes, feminine hygiene products, condoms, cigarettes (you shouldn’t be smoking in your bathroom anyway), or any other materials, as they can affect the entire system and may cause embarrassing backups in your room AND in your neighbors’ rooms.
  • Keep the toilet lid closed when not in use, and be careful not to drop towels, wash cloths, or personal grooming articles (including floss and Q-tips) into the toilet while flushing.
TRAVEL INSURANCE

In today’s ever-shifting world, it’s imperative to protect your hard-earned vacation dollars. You can do that by insuring your investment. VACAYA partners with Travel Guard.

If you ever need to make an adjustment to your Travel Guard policy (for example, if your travel dates have shifted or you’ve added to your travel plans beyond our cruise), you can submit a policy modification request via Travel Guard’s online modification form. Modification requests must be submitted prior to your travel dates (in this case before August 17, 2022 for most people). Through this form, you can also change or add any pre- or post-cruise travel days or add additional trip costs (flights, hotel, etc.). Adding coverage for other items beyond your cruise (if that’s all that was covered in your original policy) may incur additional premium costs.

If you have questions, we encourage you to visit Travel Guard’s Resource Center, where you’ll find answers to many frequently asked questions. You can also speak with a licensed Travel Guard insurance agent by calling 800.826.5248.

A NOTE ABOUT TRIP INTERRUPTION INSURANCE
If you’ve not purchased trip interruption insurance (that helps defray costs of hotel accommodations in case of a positive test result at the end of the trip), there’s still time to add it to your existing policy or originate a policy with most travel insurance carriers. Although we can’t consult on insurance, we are pointing out that these policies offer peace of mind for a reasonable price.

WHAT TO WEAR

Daytime dress is casual beach-wear. Be sure to bring comfortable, non-slip walking shoes for ports of call and shore excursions.

For evenings, we suggest country-club-casual attire. While shorts are allowed in the main dining room for dinner, we ask that they be nice shorts. You’ll quickly understand when you see Le Bougainville’s elegantly chic spaces.

The ship is climate-controlled, but we recommend that you pack a light jacket for use onboard if you run cooler than most. The theater is typically quite cool.

August weather in the Med can be warm and sticky. Be sure to check the forecast before packing and pack accordingly. Average high temperatures in August run in the 90s with lows in the mid-to-upper 70s. Humidity can be high both day and night.

In the rare instances of rain, umbrellas are available in your stateroom.

WIFI ONBOARD

Complimentary WiFi is included. Please keep in mind, however, that satellite WiFi is more akin to old-school dial-up in regard to speed. Also, we often find ourselves in areas where the signal may drop out. Remember, though… we’re in port every day and if you have a global plan on your mobile, in most cases you’ll be able to connect to the local networks for any Internet needs.

When you check in, you will receive ONE WiFi passcode for one device. This is done to ensure there’s enough bandwidth for all guests. If you need access on multiple devices, simply log out of one and log in to the other.