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Ventura's refit: A Q&A with Senior Vice President Paul Ludlow


At the end of March, Ventura returns from her refit at Damen shipyard in Brest, France. We talk to P&O Cruises Senior Vice President Paul Ludlow to find out why Ventura is such a cherished member of the fleet and what to look out for following her time out in Brittany.

Senior Vice President Paul Ludlow

Senior Vice President Paul Ludlow

Q: What makes Ventura special?

A: Ventura’s got a special place in the fleet. She’s one of our largest ships and has been a family favourite since she entered service in 2008. There’s always something happening on Ventura, and there are so many ways to have fun. She offers 12 great places to eat, 11 places to socialise (including four deck bars), a brilliant two-tier theatre and a covered pool so you can splash about, whatever the weather. There really is something for everyone.


Q: What key changes will guests see after Ventura’s refit?

A: Ventura was due a bit of a spruce-up to bring her in line with the other ships in the fleet. We always consider guest feedback before planning a refit, so we hope you’ll see some positive changes. For starters, we’ve really upgraded the on-board shopping experience, and there’s a new LED screen in the theatre to enhance the nightly shows.

Ventura will look more stylish with new carpeting in all suites and cabins and a number of public areas: the Atrium; Oasis Spa & Salon; restaurants including Saffron, Waterside, The Glass House and The Beach House; and bars such as The Red Bar and Havana lounge.

As part of the refit, both Waterside (the ship’s 24-hour buffet) and The Beach House (the fun and informal Select Dining restaurant) will see positive changes. In addition to the new carpeting, floors will also be given new tiling in the main walkway area, and new furniture will be incorporated.


Q: Can you tell us a bit more about the improved retail experience?

A: We’re delighted to be working with Dufry, the world’s leading travel retailer, to bring you the best shopping experience on board Ventura. The ship’s retail area is undergoing a complete upgrade. New collections from Italian luggage specialists Bric’s and fashion brand Liu Jo, Swiss watchmakers Longines, and British watch and accessories brand Olivia Burton will be sit alongside existing popular British brands such as Radley and Cath Kidston, and Belgian bags and accessories brand Kipling. We’re pleased to also offer a range of British gins.

On deck 7, look out for a new large glass display window and an improved, larger Dixons Travel by the photo gallery. It will stock the latest technology from leading brands such as Amazon, Apple, Bose, Canon, Fitbit, GoPro and more. To complete the changes, there will be new carpeting and the Photo Now digital screen is being relocated to the ship’s aft.


Q: And why is the new LED screen in the theatre good news?

A: Entertainment in the spectacular two-tier Arena theatre is a key feature and part of Ventura’s special character. The new LED screen will really add some wow-factor to stage shows. We already have it on Azura and Britannia, and it creates a spectacular experience for the guests. Further enhancements include upgrading the sound and lighting desk. It will all add up to a great night out.


Q: Where will Ventura be going next?

A: When she gets back to Southampton on Wednesday 28 March, Ventura will set off straight away on a 12-night cruise to the Canary Islands and Portugal. She’ll remain based in Southampton for the rest of the summer season, with a great programme that takes in Short Breaks to Belgium and Guernsey, fabulous Norwegian Fjords itineraries and a great range of sunshine holidays to favourite ports of call in Spain, Portugal, Greece and France.


We’re delighted to see Ventura come back home with a spring in her step, and we hope you’re excited about new adventures on one of our favourite ships.


View all cruises on Ventura >

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