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Silver Ray Review

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Jorge Oliver
Editor

So nice, Silversea did it twice. Introduced in 2024, Silver Ray is the luxury cruise line’s second Nova-class ship in as many years, and the 728-passenger ship is practically an exact replica of its sister Silver Nova. Other than their names, the only discernible difference between the two 54,700-GT vessels is found in their onboard art collections.

But Silver Ray shines not in the little differences from its sister ship, but rather in the nearly absolute similarities, which also happen to be a notable departure from the rest of Silversea’s non-Nova class fleet. Central to Silver Ray’s identity is its asymmetrical design – meaning the starboard and port sides aren’t a mirror image of the other – which allows for a whimsical and expansive use of the space onboard.

Bow view of Silversea Cruises ship Silver Ray in Lisbon (Photo: Jorge Oliver)

But this avantgarde layout also affords the ship a more modern take on luxury and elegance, not unlike a chic boutique hotel, while retaining the cruise line’s signature exceptional service and attention to detail. It’s not necessarily a departure; it’s an evolution.

Silver Ray also benefits from being a slightly larger vessel than the rest of Silversea’s non-Nova class fleet. The 728-passenger capacity is, along with Silver Nova’s, the highest in the fleet; but so is the space to guest ratio of 75 GRT (gross register tonnage) per passenger. And, by virtue of being bigger, there’s more to enjoy aboard: there are 10 dining options to choose from (not counting room service) and numerous bars and lounges to enjoy, including several that are new to the cruise line.

Silver Ray also continues Silversea’s (and the cruise industry’s) trend towards sustainability. The ship uses eco-friendly liquefied natural gas (LNG) as its main fuel but is capable of using shore-side power when docked. Other features include a micro auto gasification system, which reduces onboard waste volume, resulting in lower incineration emissions, and a hydrodynamic hull design to reduce fuel consumption.

Silver Ray’s Deck Plan Emphasizes Open Spaces and Connection with the Destination

View of Lisbon's Alfama district from Silver Ray (Photo: Jorge Oliver)

Silver Ray boasts a dazzling exterior courtesy of 43,000 square feet (4,000 square meters) of outdoor glass. Along with the aforementioned asymmetrical design, this feature affords the ship with light-filled and spacious interiors that succeed in connecting the vessel to the outdoors.

While Silver Ray’s asymmetrical layout is found throughout the ship, it is most apparent on the top decks (11 and 10). The ship’s centerpiece pool runs along the starboard side, providing not only generous vistas but also an abundance of sundeck space.

Deck 10 is also home to a portion of Silver Ray’s food and beverage venues: S.A.L.T. Lab and S.A.L.T. Bar as well as the open-air Marquee (which houses The Grill and Spaccanapoli), the Pool Bar and the Dusk Bar. Perched all the way forward, you’ll find the cozy Observation Lounge and its charming, tucked away Library.

The rest of Silver Ray’s public spaces are spread throughout Decks 3-5. S.A.L.T. Kitchen and Atlantide -- the ship’s one-two punch of venues that function as the main dining room – are located side by side on Deck 3, as well as The Shelter, a new Champagne Bar concept that debuted on Silver Nova.

Midships on Deck 4 is where you’ll find Silver Ray’s answer to an Atrium. The classic Arts Café on Deck 4 gets an expanded treatment on the Nova Class and serves as the ship’s beating heart, sharing a gathering space with the Reception and Shore Concierge desks. . This deck is also home to dining venues La Dame, Kaiseki and La Terrazza, a boutique and the lower level of the Venetian Lounge, Silversea’s theater.

The forward end of Deck 6 is devoted to the Otium Spa and its accompanying beauty salon and fitness center. A small casino and a second larger boutique give way to the classy Dolce Vita Bar, the laidback yang to Art Café’s bustling ying. Heading towards the aft, you’ll find Silver Note, Connoisseur’s Corner and Panorama Lounge.

Silver Ray’s cabins are distributed throughout Decks 6-9. Another unique feature for Silversea found only on Silver Ray and sister ship Silver Nova is that the vessel offers a series of aft-facing suites.

Silver Ray Cabins are Effortlessly Elegant; All Include Balconies and Butler Service

View of Silver Ray's Otium Suite (Photo: Jorge Oliver)

Silver Ray prides itself in providing an almost seamless connection to the ocean and the destinations; and the ship’s 363 cabins certainly help. Regardless of the category -- and there are 13 to choose from -- all cabins come with a balcony.

What's more: all cabins are come with butler service, one of the cornerstones of Silversea's high standards of service.

Silversea refers to all its cabins as suites and, while not all are true suites in the strict sense of the word, even the entry-level accommodations aboard Silver Ray (clocking in at 353 square feet, including the balcony) are generous in size by cruise ship standards.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, the ship’s largest accommodations are the Otium Suites – a category only found aboard Silver Ray and Silver Nova. The posh 1,324 square feet suite comes with a separate living and dining area, plus a 431-square-foot veranda with a whirlpool.

There are virtually no cabins to avoid on Silver Ray. But, if you are susceptible to seasickness, it's advisable to book a cabin on one of the lower decks (6 being the lowest available) and ideally towards the middle of the ship, as they will be more stable in rocky waters.

Food on Silver Ray is the Centerpiece of the Cruise Experience

S.A.L.T. sous chef German Castellanos at Silver Ray's Chef's Table dining experience (Photo: Jorge Oliver)

While Silver Ray’s elegant design and exquisite service are no slouches, the ship’s indisputable star is its all-encompassing culinary approach.

Built around S.A.L.T. – Silversea’s culinary program that debuted in 2020 – the ship manages to seamlessly celebrate the gastronomic traditions of its destinations with robust onboard and shoreside offerings. Three dedicated venues bring this concept to life: S.A.L.T Kitchen, S.A.L.T. Bar and S.A.L.T. Lab. The first functions as one of Silver Ray's main dining rooms, with the distinction that its menu changes every night and is completely inspired by the destination where the ship is located. Similarly, S.A.L.T. Bar crafts a cocktail menu that draws creatively from the traditions and ingredients of every port visited on any given itinerary.

The biggest praise, however, goes to S.A.L.T. Lab. Flooded with natural light, this intimate venue serves as both a culinary classroom and the exclusive, multi-course Chef’s Table. It's in this venue where S.A.L.T.'s enrichment component fully takes shape and provides passengers with a thorough understanding of each destination's culinary treasures.

Beyond the confines of the S.A.L.T. program, Silver Ray offers other first-rate dining options like Asian-inspired cuisine at Kaiseki, the small plate and intimate atmosphere of Silver Note, the signature Italian-style La Terrazza, French haute-cuisine at La Dame, or al fresco-dining in the Marquee. Each venue serves up a unique menu and ambiance; and all restaurants (with the exception of La Dame and dinner at Kaiseki) are included in the fare.

Pros

Culinary excellence, superb service and an elegant, avant-garde layout that creates memorable public spaces

Cons

Entertainment options are a bit limited beyond the culinary experiences

Bottom Line

Dazzling ship that doubles down on Silversea's lofty commitment to luxury cruising

Inclusions

Included with your cruise fare:

  • Butler service

  • All beverages

  • Dining in Atlantide, S.A.L.T. Kitchen, The Marquee, La Terrazza, and Kaiseki (for lunch)

  • Coffee, tea and snacks at Arts Cafe

  • Unlimited caviar

  • S.A.L.T. Lab classes

  • Gratuities

  • Most daily activities, unless otherwise noted

  • Enrichment lectures and theater shows

  • Wi-Fi service via Starlink

  • Self-service laundry

  • In-cabin wetbar and minibar setup

  • One shore excursion per port (only with Silversea's Port-to-Port and Door-to-Door fares)

  • Airport transfers to and from ship (only with Silversea's Door-to-Door fare option)

Not included with your cruise fare:

  • Dinner at La Dame, Kaiseki and Chef's Table

  • Spa treatments

  • Personal training sessions

  • S.A.L.T. and premium shore excursions

  • Laundry and pressing services (depending on suite category)

  • Premium wines, Champagne and spirits

Fellow Passengers

The Shelter Champagne Bar aboard Silver Ray (Photo: Jorge Oliver)

Silversea attracts wealthy, well-traveled passengers, and Silver Ray is no exception. North American travelers tend to be the majority, but the cruise line is known for its strong international passenger base, so it's common to hear various languages onboard. The ship's turn towards a more modern style and strong emphasis on culinary exploration can also appeal to new-to-brand and new-to-cruise travelers.

Passengers belonging to the 60+ age bracket are more commonly associated with the cruise line, but it's not unusual to see younger travelers and multigenerational cruisers. Silver Ray is also LGBTQ+ friendly and gatherings are held on every sailing.While the ship welcomes all ages, it's not particularly appropriate for children

Silver Ray has a total of six elevators distributed in two banks, and offers six wheelchair-accessible cabins. Accessible public restrooms are also available throughout the ship.

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