Chichagof Dream

The Chichagof Dream started its life in Jeffersonville Indiana in 1984, launched as the Spirit of Nantucket for Clipper Cruise Lines.  She cruised the Canadian Maritimes, the East Coast’s Intercoastal Waterway, and the Great Lakes. 

Cruise West bought her and renamed her Spirit of Nantucket, and she continued on the East Coast until 2008 when she moved to Alaska and became the Spirit of Glacier Bay.  She ran aground in Tarr Inlet in 2008 and was retired to Ballard where she became a meeting center and accommodations for Cruise West.  Cruise West had planned to repair her, because she had structural damage but they went out of business in 2010.

Allen Marine bought her for their “Alaska Dream Cruise” fleet in 2015 and did extensive work on her in their Sitka Shipyard. She had carried 102 passengers, but Allen cut off several of the cabins on the promenade deck to make an outdoor viewing and seating area and knocked her capacity down to 80.  I can see the shipyard from my second-floor deck and watched some of her refitting.

I first rode on her on a short dinner cruise held as a fundraising event for some Sitka Non-profit.  We sailed out to Silver Bay and had dinner.  It was Alaska Dream’s way of testing the kitchen and breaking in wait staff before the real season.  

Dining Room

Allen Marine is very generous with their contributions to Sitka non-profits, Raven Radio will be the beneficiary of one of their benefit cruises on the Solstice.  Rotary, the Science Center, Conservation Society all have Allen Sponsored fundraisers.  On that cruise the company showed their “newest” ship off, including the “salt room.” Lined with blocks of pink Himalayan salt where you can sit and clear your lungs.  It is good for asthma and other respiratory problems.

Himalayan Salt Room

She has a front lounge, dining room, and lots of open deck space for viewing. 

The staterooms were comfortable. There was an outlet by the bed for my CPAP machine and USB outlets to charge our phones (which were of no use once out of port. A positive in my estimation) and cameras.

She also has an open bridge policy which is great when navigating Olga or Neva Straits. 

Chichagof Dream is a fine looking lady,  Forty years becomes her.

But what’s with the “dog door.” (probably for fire hoses)

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