Spirit of New Jersey: Cruising on the Hudson

The Spirit of New Jersey is a beautiful newly renovated ship with a relaxing top side lounge, a world class dining room and panoramic views of the harbor. We met up with our boat at Lincoln harbor in NJ just 10 minutes from midtown Manhattan. An evening aboard The Spirit of New Jersey consists of dinner, dancing and live entertainment. The entertainment provided depends on which of the themed cruises you choose. Most cruises feature a live DJ who spins the top 40 hits while narrating the sites along the way. The themed options include a Gospel Brunch as well as a Latin Moonlight Cruise.  In honor of the servicemen and women, visiting New York for Memorial Day Weekend, we chose the Saturday Fleetweek and Tall Ships Dinner Cruise.

Our evening aboard included a DJ, dancing, buffet and much more.  This was a unique experience as most cruises keep the staff and guests separate, at spirit the staff is part of the fun as they engage, laugh and perform while fulfilling your needs as a guest. Our server Rachel was not only a great performer but a knowledgeable member of the staff. She helped us pick the best cocktails, and even included us in her performance of Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way.”

After stuffing our faces at the bountiful buffet, we ventured top side to enjoy the magnificent view. It is not uncommon to find yourself vying for position on the upper deck due to the amazing photo ops. The bridges and city scape photograph beautifully and make great souvenirs. During the duration of the cruise we passed several major monuments including the  Brooklyn Bridge and  The Statue of liberty. The route is planned perfectly, we went by the famed statue just before sundown. The oranges and purple of the sky made the scene that much more majestic. When we returned to our table much to our delight personalized desserts had been left for us to enjoy.

Spending an evening on a luxury yacht, complete with Dinner and dancing does not come cheap, however for the quality of the experience the rates are reasonable. The basic weekend  dinner cruise starts at about $80 per person. Lunch and brunch cruises start at $40 per person. The ticket price includes boarding and buffet only. Soft drinks, water coffee and tea are complimentary, cocktails are not included in the ticket price.

For about $90 we enjoyed four signature cocktails and three flutes of champagne. Also not included in the ticket price are tips and gratuity for the wait staff.  If  you are lucky enough to book a ticket and have half the fun we had, you will gladly tip the staff. For New Yorkers the tour is a great way to view and rediscover your home town, or satisfy out-of-town guests with a tour of the city and dinner all in one. Tourists should see this tour as a great value as well as they get to experience the beauty of the infamous New York skyline, in a luxurious setting and take amazing shots to share back home. For complete tour info or to book a private engagement visit www.spiritcruises.com