Perhaps you can remember – or have seen pictures of – the “Golden Age” of cruising, when sophistication and glamour were the order of the day. Jeans had not yet been invented – nor would you have been allowed on these vessels wearing them in any case. The cruise experience was for the well heeled and elite of society – and the way they dressed onboard reflected this.
Today, it would seem – sadly, to many – that the heyday of cruise sophistication is no more and that “nothing is sacred,” at least when it comes to nonexistent dress codes. Yet, the discerning traveler is still able to hearken back to the cruise days of yore – they simply have to ensure their reservation is on one of the few ultraluxury liners whose dress code is a “cut above” the more pedestrian cruise lines.
What cruise lines still offer this experience and what are the general guidelines?
This guide offers insight into what the ultraluxury cruise lines define for their guest’s attire:
- Cunard is still the most formal line. One of the great thrills of a Cunard voyage is the sheer glamour of the evenings. Generally, evening dress may be either formal, semi-formal or elegant casual when your ship is at sea, and semi-formal or casual when your ship is in port. There will be a maximum of three formal nights in a week. Evening attire for the ship’s main restaurants, effective from 6 p.m. will be specified on your ship’s Daily Programme.
Please refer to the below-listed dress code descriptions from Cunard:
Formal: Black tie, formal dark suit, Military or Award decorations may be worn on formal nights for men. Evening dress, cocktail dress, smart casual trouser suit or other formal attire for ladies.
Semi-formal: Jacket and tie for men. Cocktail dress or trouser suit for ladies. No jeans.
Elegant Casual: Jacket, no tie required for men. Dress, skirt or trousers for ladies. No jeans or shorts
- Crystal Cruises has updated their dress code policy for 2013: Beginning with voyage 2301,January 5 on Crystal Symphony and voyage 3306, March 31 on Crystal Serenity, new dress codes for evening dining and other activities will become effective. The line will be instituting changes that reflect input from their guests and the more relaxed dress codes reflected throughout the world today.
Casual: During the day, casual wear is appropriate in any onboard lounge and dining venue. This includes resort-style attire, shorts and jeans. After 6 p.m., shorts and baseball caps are not permitted for men or women. For all venues on board, the recommended evening attire is one of the following:
Resort Casual: Slacks and sweater or shirt for men; casual dress, skirt or slacks with a sweater or blouse for women. Ties and jackets are not required.
Elegant Casual (Informal): Suit or slacks with a jacket over a sweater or shirt for men. Ties are optional. Cocktail dress, skirt or slacks with a sweater or blouse for women. Jeans are not appropriate.
Black Tie (Formal) Optional: While Elegant Casual is always appropriate in the evening, a Black Tie Optional evening offers a celebratory opportunity to dress more formally on a special evening(s). For men, this includes a dark suit with a tie or tuxedo; for women, this includes a formal cocktail dress, evening gown or dressy evening separates. On Black Tie Optional evenings, we request that jeans not be worn in any dining venues or lounges, including the Casino.
With this new policy, guests can expect the following:
On 7- to 10-day cruises: one Black Tie Optional evening
On 11- to 13-day cruises: two Black Tie Optional evenings
World cruises, holiday voyages and crossings may be scheduled differently.
- The EUROPA was again the only cruise ship worldwide to be awarded more than 5-stars-plus.* It promises unique cruises for travellers with high expectations.
There is no dress code aboard the EUROPA. However, here are some suggestions intended to help classify the respective occasions as appropriate and dress accordingly.
Casual – the recreational look for a relaxed evening. In the Europa Restaurant as well as in the Venezia and in the “Restaurant Dieter Müller” on Deck 4, gentlemen wear a jacket, respectively a summer suit – no tie needed.
Elegant in the evening
The sophisticated and elegant setting of evening events inspires people to dress accordingly. In the Europa Restaurant as well as in the Venezia and in the “Restaurant Dieter Müller” on Deck 4, gentlemen wear a jacket, respectively a summer suit and a tie. Ladies opt for the corresponding attire. In the Lido Café, the meals are consumed in sporty-elegant clothes – a tie is not necessary.
Great occasions offer a wonderful opportunity to present oneself as glamorous. At gala events, the traditional farewell dinner or a ball: Gentlemen wear a dinner jacket or a dark suit, and ladies evening attire. Among other criteria, the number of gala events depends on the itinerary. Generally, the following applies: one gala evening on short cruises of up to four nights, two gala evenings on cruises of up to 15 nights and three gala evenings on cruises of 16 or more nights.
In the Lido Café, the meals are consumed in sporty-elegant clothes – a tie is not necessary.
- Regent Seven Seas Cruises where attire ranges from Casual to Formal Optional.
Casual: Casual wear is appropriate for daytime onboard or ashore. Casual wear such as shorts or jeans is not appropriate after 6 p.m. with the exception of the final evening of the cruise.
Elegant Casual: The recommendation for board dress in the evenings is Elegant Casual. Dinner dress includes skirt, or slacks with blouse or sweater, pant suit or dress for ladies; slacks and collared shirt for gentlemen. Sport jackets are optional and ties are not required. No jeans, shorts, t-shirts or tennis shoes at dinner.
Formal Optional: On sailings of 16 nights or more, Formal and Semi-Formal attire is optional on two evenings. Guests may follow the Elegant Casual dress code or opt for more formal choice of clothing including gowns and cocktail dresses for ladies; tuxedos, dinner jackets or dark suits with tie for gentlemen.
Casual Wear: During the daytime, casual, resort-style attire, including shorts and jeans, is welcome in all lounges and dining venues. Swimsuits, brief shorts, cover-ups and exercise attire should be reserved for poolside, on deck or in the spa and fitness center. After 6 p.m. attire should be Resort Casual, Elegantly Casual of Formal Optional.
Resort Casual: Resort Casual: Slacks and a sweater or shirt for men; sundress, skirt or slacks with a sweater or blouse for women. Jeans are not considered appropriate in The Restaurant.
Elegantly Casual: Slacks with a jacket over a sweater or shirt for men. Dress, skirt or pants with a sweater or blouse for women. Jeans are not considered appropriate in The Restaurant.
Formal Optional: While Elegantly Casual is always appropriate during the evening, a Formal Optional evening will be provided for guests who wish to dress more formally at least once each seven days. Formal Optional attire includes a tuxedo or dark suit with tie for men, cocktail dress or other formal apparel for women.
Jeans are not considered appropriate at any time for The Restaurant, and on Formal Optional evenings, Seabourn requests no jeans in any of the lounges or dining venues.
As a rule of thumb, Formal Optional evenings are scheduled as follows:
Cruises up to 13 days: One Formal Optional evening
Cruises of 14 to 20 days: Two Formal Optional evenings
Cruises of 21 or more days: Three Formal Optional evenings
6. Silversea Cruises offers these clothing suggestions for their guests:
Casual Resort Wear (Daytime): Appropriate for daytime aboard ship or ashore; consists of standard sports outfits as worn at resorts. Shoes should be flat or low-heeled for deck activities.
Evening attire falls into three categories: casual, informal and formal.
Casual: Open-neck shirts, slacks and sports outfits are appropriate.
Informal: Women usually wear dresses or trouser suits; gentlemen wear jackets (tie optional).
Formal: For women, an evening gown or cocktail dress; men wear tuxedos, dinner jackets or dark suits. On formal nights, guests dining in La Terrazza may opt to wear casually elegant attire (dresses or trouser suits for women; jacket, tie optional for men).
Sailings of eight days or less typically feature two formal nights, while longer voyages usually have three or four formal nights.
The cruise specialists at Cruises-N-More frequently counsel travelers on longer voyages, including world cruises as one of their specialties. To work with Cruises-N-More Vice President and Owner Tiffany Neidhardt or a Cruises-N-More cruise specialist for your next cruise vacation, call 800-733-2048 (toll-free USA/Canada), 0-808-189-1292 (toll-free U.K.), 800-076-002 (toll-free Australia) or +1-407-771-4454 direct-dial. Visit Cruises-N-More at http://www.cruises-n-more.com/