By Michael Coleman
One of the most trusted men in America, legendary broadcaster Walter Cronkite, and political commentator William F. Buckley, Jr. headline a who’s who list of celebrity speakers scheduled to appear on an ultra-luxurious Silversea world cruise in 2007.
The 126-day voyage, aboard the elegant, 382-guest Silver Shadow, will cross three oceans, seven seas and six continents. Guests will depart Fort Lauderdale January 15 and visit 61 ports before concluding the perk-filled odyssey in New York City, May 22.
While Silversea is renowned for pampering its guests and treating them to both intimate port calls and educational shore excursions, look for this voyage and its stellar line-up of speakers to provide an even greater onboard enrichment experience.
“Our world cruise guests expect a truly exceptional and personally enriching lifestyle experience,” said Joseph Proto, Silversea’s director of world cruise and business development. “So we searched the worlds of journalism, politics, literature, sports, film, gourmet living and academia to find just the right personalities to share their insights, passions and perspectives to complement every segment of this extraordinary seafaring adventure.”Â
That they have.
ABC News correspondent Lynn Sherr, author Richard Reeves, photojournalist Steve McCurry, investigative journalist Judith Miller, Gourmet magazine wine and spirits consultant Michael Green, film critic Rex Reed, champion yachtsman John Bertrand and Egyptologist Zahi Hawass are also scheduled to share their insights with guests during various segments.
Clearly, however, Silversea’s effort to land both Cronkite and Buckley is a coup.
Cronkite has covered virtually every major news event during his 65-plus years in journalism – the past 54 affiliated with CBS News. He became a special correspondent for CBS News when he stepped down on March 6, 1981 after 19 years as anchorman and managing editor of the CBS Evening News.Â
Affectionately nicknamed “Old Iron Pants” for his unflappable nature under pressure, Cronkite’s accomplishments – both on and off the air – have won him acclaim and trust from journalism colleagues and the American public alike. Cronkite annually topped viewer opinions polls as “the most trusted man in America” while serving as anchor.
He will speak during The Home Sea segment of the world cruise departing April 27 from Alexandria to Lisbon. The segment also features a call in Valencia, Spain, for the Louis Vuitton Cup match races to determine which yachtsmen will race Team Alinghi in the 32nd America’s Cup yachting competition.
Buckley, meanwhile, will headline the enrichment program aboard The Sea of Quiet Reflection segment departing May 8 from Lisbon to New York City. He is an author, editor, syndicated columnist, public speaker, television host and adventurer. He founded the conservative journal of opinion, National Review, in 1955 and was its editor-in-chief until 1990. He served as editor-at-large until 2004, when he formally retired.
From 1966 to 1999 Buckley was the host of the Emmy Award-winning Firing Line, the longest-running program in television history with the same host. He is the best-selling author of more than 40 works of nonfiction and fiction.
Sheer, Reeves and McCurry kick off the Silversea odyssey aboard The Empires of Time segment departing January 15 from Fort Lauderdale to Santiago, Chile.
An award-winning journalist, Sherr joined ABC News as a correspondent on 20/20 in May 1986. She has covered a wide range of stories, specializing in women’s issues and social changes, as well as investigative reports.Â
An author and syndicated columnist, Reeves’ weekly column has appeared since 1979 in more than 100 newspapers and is read around the world. He has received a number of awards for his work in print, television and film, and for his contributions to journalism.Â
McCurry, meanwhile, is recognized universally as one of today’s finest image-makers, having won many of photography’s top awards. His photograph of an Afghan refugee girl has been described by many as the most recognizable photograph in the world today.
Aboard Across the Sea of Books segment departing January 31, from Santiago to Papeete, Tahiti, guests are sure to gravitate to Miller, an author and a Pulitzer Prize-winning former investigative reporter for The New York Times. She left the paper in November 2005 after spending 85 days in jail to defend a reporter’s right to protect confidential sources. Since her jail time, she has been advocating the enactment of a federal shield law to protect the relationship between reporters and their sources.
Look for Green aboard The Land Where the Sun Wakes segment departing February 27 from Auckland to Sydney. He has worked in the wine trade as educator, importer, writer, consultant and retailer for over 20 years, and has been a guest on Food Network’s Emeril Live and Cooking Live as well as CBS Marketwatch, CNN, and NPR.
Reed, an author, actor, talk show host, film critic and historian, whose name is synonymous with Hollywood, is scheduled to speak during the line’s Sailing in the Dream Time segment, departing March 12 from Sydney to Singapore. His film reviews have appeared in nationally syndicated columns for decades, making him one of the most prolific movie critics in the nation. Bertrand will also speak to guests during the same segment. He skippered Australia 2 to victory over Dennis Connor’s Liberty to win the 1983 America’s Cup, breaking 132 years of American domination and, in the process, snapped the longest-running record in the history of modern sport.
World-renowned Egyptian archaeologist, Zahi Hawass, will enthrall guests during Silversea’s Voyage to the Western Lands segment, departing April 12 from Dubai to Alexandria. He is the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities and Director of Excavations at Giza, Saqqara and the Bahariya Oasis. Hawass has lectured all over the world, most frequently in Europe, Japan and the United States, about pyramids, mummies and his numerous discoveries.
Silver Shadow’s globetrotting guests will also enjoy six-star service and world-class cuisine in a number of onboard venues, from The Restaurant (main dining room), Le Champagne, Terrace Cafe (indoor/outdoor cafe) and Poolside Grille, to 24-hour in-suite dining.