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Villa Vie Residences Purchases Braemar from Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

Villa Vie Residences Purchases Braemar from Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

New cruise brand Villa Vie Residences has purchased Braemar, a former Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines ship, and will rename the vessel Villa Vie Odyssey.

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The 24,344-ton, 924-passenger Villa Vie Odyssey will enter service in May 2024 after undergoing a multimillion-dollar conversion to a residential cruise ship featuring villas for residents.

“The ship’s name symbolizes the company ethos of creating a community to share unforgettable moments of discovery on an extended journey, connecting people, places, and self,” explained Villa Vie Residences CEO Mikael Petterson in a press release.

The 924-passenger Villa Vie Odyssey will enter service in May 2024 (image courtesy of Villa Vie Residences)

Villa Vie Residences’ Continual World Cruise

Villa Vie Residences’ Continual World Cruise aboard Odyssey will let travelers discover more than 425 ports in 147 countries across all seven continents as it circumnavigates the globe every three and a half years.

Stays in each port range from two to seven days, allowing cruisers to experience each location for much longer than the average cruise ship port call.

The new cruise brand aims to transform the way people experience global travel with a novel approach, allowing cruisers to own or rent an onboard “villa”—the company’s term for its staterooms. Villa Vie offers the opportunity to explore the world while living aboard a cruise ship at a price comparable to traditional condominium ownership.

Villa ownership starts at $99,999 USD for an inside cabin, with a monthly fee of $3,499 per couple. Solo owners receive a discount on the monthly fee.

A Balcony Villa aboard Villa Vie Odyssey (image courtesy of Villa Vie Residences)

Residents will enjoy an inclusive experience with food (including 24-hour room service), non-alcoholic drinks, and entertainment included.

Related: Which Cruise Lines Have All-Inclusive Cruises?

Responding to consumer demand for more flexibility, the company also offers a “pay-as-you-go” option that lets customers select 35- to 120-day segments of the world cruise itinerary, up to a whopping 1,301 days of continuous global cruising.

The majority of Villa Vie’s shares are owned by its residents, who also take an active role in the decision-making process in a “for the residents, by the residents” approach. As founders, they chose the name Odyssey for their ship.

A Villa Vie Founders Club member and resident identified as Laura said, “Villa Vie isn’t like a regular corporation—it’s open and we feel a part of it.”

What to expect aboard Villa Vie Odyssey

Villa Vie Residences promises that Odyssey will offer an “intimate, new cruise lifestyle,” and the ship will be able to reach parts of the world inaccessible to larger ships—often docking in the heart of destinations.

Due to her flatter hull, Odyssey can also navigate rivers and inland waterways. In October 2019, the vessel (operating as Braemar) became the longest ship to ever pass through the Corinth Canal in Greece.

With eight decks total, including a wraparound promenade and cascading aft decks, Villa Vie Odyssey features three dining venues, eight bars, four lounges, a spa and fitness center, an expanded swimming pool with four Jacuzzis, and a well-stocked library. The ship was extended in 2009 and was last refurbished in 2019.

The Aft Restaurant aboard Villa Vie Odyssey (image courtesy of Villa Vie Residences)

Odyssey‘s central business center, equipped with conference rooms and individual offices, will let digital nomads work at sea in comfort. All residents and guests will have complimentary internet access via Starlink and Viasat 3.

Villa Vie Odyssey will offer an interactive and instructional culinary center, as well as a golf around the world program, complete with an onboard golf simulator, tours, and seminars taught by a Master PGA Professional.

Villa Vie Odyssey‘s Culinary Arts Center (image courtesy of Villa Vie Residences)

Petterson noted that “Villa Vie Odyssey will be customized for her immersive, 3.5-year global circumnavigations, ensuring all the comforts and amenities of home.”

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Would you consider purchasing a cabin aboard a cruise ship like Villa Vie Odyssey? Do you think the cost is worth the benefits? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Carrie Ann Karstunen

Louis Stryker

Saturday 30th of December 2023

Why would anyone take a chance on Mikael Petterson after his last "world cruise" disaster "Life at Sea?" I wouldn't trust the man as far into the ocean as I could chuck him.

Carrie Ann Karstunen

Monday 1st of January 2024

Hi Louis, I'm sure a lot of cruise fans share your sentiment. However, Villa Vie (unlike Life at Sea) actually has a ship! I'm watching this new venture hoping it will be a success. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your opinion!