Although she is over 40 years old now, to look at Black Watch she remains every bit as sophisticated and elegant as ever, her huge wave cutting bow and sleek design have ensured she remains in service for Fred Olsen for years to come. Indeed, when she was launched in the 1970’s (as Royal Viking Star) she and her sister ships were considered the most luxurious cruise ships in the world.
Black Watch is a small sized cruise ship allowing her to gain access to smaller ports. She absorbs passengers well – those who sail with her tend to be quite reserved and friendly, retirees mainly. With two formal nights per week Black Watch leans more towards a classic style of cruising. The interior and décor on-board Black Watch is classic-cruising, with many polished wood finishes and polished metal nautical style trims. She has a dedicated cinema with tiered seating as well as a theatre. She offers a range of entertainment mainly by way of bingo, comedians and musicians as well as some dance acts.
Dining on-board Black Watch is from a small but perfectly prepared menu. There is a buffet service that you can use where you can mix-and-match to your heart’s content. Although the majority of the Black Watch passengers may be asleep by 11.30pm, there is the famed “Midnight Buffet” to be had in the Garden Cafe.
Exercise facilities on-board are adequate for the majority of people who sail with Black Watch. You’ll find most just walking or taking a light swim. Although there is a gymnasium if this is your style of workout.
With her wave cutting bow, Black Watch remains steady throughout most weather and seas and with her intimate passenger numbers, history and classic-traditional decor Black Watch would make the ideal first time cruise.
In the Piper’s Club on-board Black Watch you can view various military memorabilia from the Black Watch Regiment from which the ship takes her name. Where the name ‘Black Watch’ originates from is something of a mystery, popular consensus is that it is derived from the dark tartan worn by the regiments’ men, the same tartan is used in furnishings on-board Black Watch, folk-lore suggests the name comes from the men who first sided with England to control the warring Scottish clans, deemed traitors with black hearts by the Scots. Black Watch does not have a black heart though, especially on Burns Night!