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Two years in the making, guests travelling on the South Side Story World Cruise 2023 enjoyed a uniquely immersive cultural experience on Kalanggaman Island in the Philippines 

Silversea Cruises®, the leading ultra-luxury cruise line, rented an entire island in the Philippines on February 10 to host a bespoke event for approximately 300 guests travelling aboard Silver Shadow. Travellers journeying on Silversea’s South Side Story World Cruise 2023 enjoyed an immersive cultural display on Kalanggaman Island—an idyllic isle of pristine natural beauty, nestled between the Cebu and Leyte in the Visayan Sea. Two years in the making, the enriching event showcased the talents of more than 500 residents of the Eastern Visayas region, from performers, hospitality professionals, and event planners to massage therapists, mixologists, and chefs.

Connecting with the local culture, Silversea’s guests were warmly welcomed by traditional music and dance, refreshing cocktails, and a marienda (afternoon tea) featuring Filipino delicacies, as they disembarked Silver Shadow for the day of festivities. Wrapped in the island’s tropical beauty, guests strolled Kalanggaman’s sanded beaches, swam in its clear waters, relaxed in hammocks and daybeds, and enjoyed complimentary massages on the beach. In the evening, travellers savoured a multi-course dinner featuring local specialities under the stars and a canopy of swaying palms. The event concluded with a colourful and lively dance performance.

“This once-in-a-lifetime experience took two years of planning and preparation, and we are grateful to the local community for their invaluable support,” said Conrad Combrink, Silversea’s Senior Vice President of Expeditions, Destination and Itinerary Management. “Utilising our destination expertise, Silversea invests heavily in bespoke events for our guests’ enjoyment, connecting travellers with our planet’s most captivating cultures, communities, and landscapes. This is especially true of our World Cruise offering. Unlocking some of the most enriching experiences in the world for guests, these extended voyages include experiences that best showcase the most authentic aspects of each destination. Not only did our guests gain a deep insight into the local culture here on Kalanggaman Island, but we were able to benefit the local economy, helping to rebuild the island’s pontoon jetty and make other structural renovations that will improve the destination’s tourism infrastructure.”     

“The added value of special World Cruise events like these is truly what sets Silversea apart,” said Barbara Muckermann, Silversea’s President and CEO. “And we have more in store for our guests on this amazing 139-day voyage, from a bespoke Freddie Mercury tribute show staged at a historic palace in Zanzibar to an exclusive evening performance at the Manaus Opera House in the Amazon, complete with champagne and canapés, among other experiences. There is simply no better way to explore the world.”

Other events on Silversea’s South Side Story World Cruise 2023 have included a bespoke wine-tasting event at the Black Cottage Winery in Picton, New Zealand; authentic dance performance on Champagne Beach, Vanuatu; fire dancing display in Rabaul, Papua New Guinea; and fine gastronomy and folklore in the Cave of Descending Dragons, Ha Long Bay, Vietnam.

Silversea’s 132-day ‘Far East-West’ World Cruise 2024 will see guests journey throughout the Pacific, incorporating some of the planet’s most extreme destinations. Guests will depart San Francisco aboard Silver Shadow on January 15, 2024, before calling in 65 destinations across 14 countries.

Silver Dawn’s 136-day ‘Controtempo’ World Cruise 2025 will depart Tokyo for New York on January 13, 2025, unlocking some of the world’s most iconic and off-the-beaten-path destinations during unconventional seasons, with immersive experiences that introduce local people and the most compelling stories. Guests will journey to 59 destinations in 30 countries, across four continents.

Text: PM Silversea Cruises