Cruise Line Focus

Cruise line focus: Paul Gauguin Cruises

Paul Gauguin Cruises is a luxury cruise line specialising in boutique environmentally-friendly cruising among the 118 islands of French Polynesia.

Paul Gauguin island

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Paul Gauguin is owned by Pacific Beachcomber, under the leadership of entrepreneur Richard Bailey, who serves as chairman and CEO of the cruise line.

Paul Gauguin Cruises was established by Vantage Deluxe World Travel in January 2009. Vantage created the new subsidiary cruise line when Regent Seven Seas, which had operated the ship for more than a decade, announced it would not renew its contract in 2010.

Paul Gauguin exterior

The cruise line’s only cruise ship, Paul Gauguin, was purpose-built for cruising in French Polynesia.

She was launched in 1997, but has been thoroughly refurbished over the years, ensuring that she feels brand new when aboard.

Paul Gauguin cruise experience

With a passenger capacity of just 337, and a crew of 214, life aboard a Paul Gauguin cruise is all about relaxation, cultural immersion, learning and having every need anticipated by the crew.


Passengers can learn about the Polynesian islands from residents themselves, as well as from renowned archaeologists and marine biologists.

Shore excursions are done by highly rated guides and tour operators, and pre- and post-cruise partner hotels are available for booking at special rates. Pacific Beachcomber operates six mid-level and luxury resorts on the islands.

Paul Gauguin resort

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The Paul Gauguin cruise ship

Although the ship is modern, with 70% of staterooms providing balcony views of one of the most beautiful regions of the world, it has also been designed and decorated with the tropical surroundings in mind.

Old photos of Tahiti, and Polynesian artefacts, are on display throughout the ship and the on-board atmosphere is as laid-back as the islands among which it cruises .

Paul Gauguin-cabin

That’s not to say that the service is not five-star though, because this is a uber-luxury cruise line at heart, with its target market being international couples and honeymooners.

To enhance the sense of escape and freedom, the cruise line is all-inclusive, so gratuities, soft drinks, and select wines and spirits are included in the fare.

"Paul Gauguin" cruiseship

Dining room aboard Paul Gauguin (picture courtesy Cruise Mates)

Dining and amenities aboard Paul Gauguin

The ship features three dining rooms, including the French-Polynesian L’Etoile and La Veranda, a buffet with indoor and outdoor seating that becomes a French Bistro by night featuring menus designed by Michelin-star chef Jean-Pierre Vigato.

Aft, there is a watersports marina with windsurfers, kayaks, paddle boarding, snorkeling gear and scuba equipment.

Paul Gauguin aft marina

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Types of passengers on a Paul Gauguin cruise

The line attracts an interesting mix of ages. The average passenger age is 55 to 60 years old, but there are also a good number of younger passengers, mostly honeymooners.

French Polynesia, and for cruise enthusiasts, a Paul Gauguin voyage, is a bucket list experience that transcends age and nationality.

Americans and French passengers make up the majority, but it’s not unusual to meet Australians and Brits on-board as well, along with Japanese and Chinese guests at certain times of the year.

Ships in the Paul Gauguin fleet:

Paul Gauguin

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