It’s no secret that I adore amazing design. When design is done right it evokes a positive emotion and so when I’m traveling I seek out great design to give me that feeling of comfort and coziness that I have at home. Staying somewhere that’s well designed helps me return home feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. I think that’s the power of great design — it has the power to change your mood and outlook.
OK so I’m gonna be real with you here: I didn’t use to associate going on a cruise with great design, let alone design that can make you feel both cozy and fabulous. However, my recent trip with Virgin Voyages to see Scarlet Lady, their debut ship, being completed in Italy has totally changed my perception of what it means to cruise. Virgin Voyages kindly invited me to partner with them and check out Scarlet Lady and how she’s going to reinvent sailing. It’s not just because they have a tattoo parlor or drag queen brunch – it’s because the design is so incredible, too! They have worked with some of the top designers out there, from Tom Dixon to Roman & Williams, both of whom are some of my all time favorite designers. No surprise, then, that they have designed spaces that don’t just look amazing but will make you feel amazing, too.
I mean can you even with this space?! To be honest, it’s a level of extra that I live for! This red and white show stopper is the entrance to the Razzle Dazzle restaurant. It was designed by Concrete of Amsterdam and will be the home of drag queen brunch! The décor is just the start of the eye-catching things on display at what will be a mainly vegetarian restaurant. I say mainly because there is a secret ‘naughty’ menu where you can add meat to your dishes! Virgin definitely knows how to make a statement and this vibrant entrance is sure to make sailors feel fabulous and energized for a day of fun on board Scarlet Lady.2. Richard’s Rooftop
What I love about Scarlet Lady is that she has something for every mood. Richard’s Rooftop was designed by Tom Dixon’s research studio is a roof deck that’s the anthesis to Razzle Dazzle, it’s a VIP Sundeck and Bar and exclusive for Suite guests only. Richard’s Rooftop is all about sophisticated relaxation with a cocktail in hand. I am obsessed with the natural textiles and woods they use – and I can just imagine how refreshing the sea air will feel up there. The best part of Richard’s Rooftop is how it’s located at the front of the ship so you will get incredible views out to the horizon.3. Athletic Club Training Area
I never would have thought a ship would have a gym that I would actually want to work out in, but the Scarlet Lady definitely does! She even has a running track called The Runway on board! I got to run on it whilst touring the ship during construction and can confirm it’s definitely long enough to get a decent run in. You can see in the render above how it floats above the boxing area in the training area, all of which was designed by Concrete of Amsterdam. I love how Virgin Voyages commissioned designers who had never designed spaces on ships before this project. I believe that’s what has been key to creating such a unique experience that I don’t believe people have been able to have at sea until now.4. Gunbae
This restaurant is very special and the design gives a key as to why: if you look carefully you will see that every table has a flameless grill built into it where sailors can cook their own food. Gunbae is all about being loud, interactive and having fun — which is reflected in the design, from the luxurious emerald seats to the curvaceous round tables.5. The Wake
I am definitely saving the most glamorous space for last! This is The Wake where Champagne is served by the glass from magnum bottles. The space was designed Roman & Williams (my favs!) and they do glam and elegance so well. The Wake feels modern but also makes you feel special thanks to the indulgent warm tones and reflective surfaces. Who wants to meet at the grand piano for a glass (or three!) of Champagne?