Silversea’s beloved Venetian Society Ambassador is everybody’s friend
By Patti Pietschmann, Travel Diva
Fernando was in the lush lobby smiling and greeting passengers as they arrived on their first Silversea voyage 25 years ago. Charming and erudite his demeanor made you feel comfortable, like you made the right choice.
It was the launch of the cruise line that could and did. Silversea helped redefined seagoing luxury and reintroduce upscale cruises. It was, and continues to be, innovative.
A long history with the line
Since that initial introduction to Fermando de Oliveira and Silversea we have met the man many more times. And like the cruise line he continues to only get better. The enthusiastic Ambassador to Silversea’s Venetian Society has greeted thousands of passengers since he joined the then one-ship company in 1994.
Some Fernando fans credited him as the reason they continue to sail on Silversea.
“When I first joined Silversea in 1994, the cruise line had only one ship. But the qualities that enabled Silversea to grow into an industry-leading travel company are the same qualities that today make the cruise line entirely unique,” he says.
“Put simply, it’s a club that travels. We have so many Venetian Society guests who come year after year because they feel so at home on board. Our guests seamlessly explore remarkable destinations like the West Coast of Africa, Antarctica, the Galapagos archipelago and remote islands in the South Pacific, while enjoying the comforts of home – from fine food to likeminded friends.”
Always in the moment Fernando welcomes one on ones with guests. He even greets them in their language. And he learns the names of up to 500 of them.
He sends out handwritten invitations inviting passengers to join him for dinner throughout the cruise. And he’s even had some of the passengers to his home or gone to theirs.
Fernando also credits Silversea’s onboard team as being integral to guests’ enjoyment. “A sense of intimacy is really what makes our service the best at sea,” he says, “even the bartenders.” And he’s right. When you walk up the bar after your first time the barkeep knows what you’re drinking.
Attentive barkeeps and staff
Sometimes your cocktail of choice is there before you arrive if they see you at the entrance. And it’s always been a perfect martini for Richard and a buttery Chard for me. Although sometimes I switch to Kir Imperials (champagne). Well drinks are free on Silversea.
Fernando gives accolades to the restaurant manager who always knows where you want to sit and makes sure you get that table. Of course the butler, which comes with every suite, also caters to your every whim. And whims I’ve had a few on Silversea cruises.
It’s those personal touches plus fine food and amenities that contribute to Silversea’s lasting popularity.
Very often passengers will ask the cruise line if Fernando will be on board the cruise they booked. Some actually try to sail with him.
Well if you’re a friend of Fernando he will be on Silversea’s annual Venetian Society sailing in October. He will also be aboard the Legends of Cruising World Cruise in 2020 and the Finest World Tour in 2021.
Read more about Silversea Grand Voyages here.
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