The supposed sad state of the Rio de Janeiro Olympic village is a hot topic in the news recently, with many reports that athletes from various national teams are finding it uninhabitable. Complaints have covered clogged drains, water leaks, electrical issues, dodgy plumbing and more. Team Australia quickly moved out into hotels, and the Italians hired their own plumbers and electricians to get their part of the village into decent shape.
Luxury cruise ship to the rescue
Team USA evidently takes the comfort of their athletes very seriously, and have turned to luxury cruise line Silversea to find a remedy to their Olympic Village problems. The men's and women's basketball teams - which include some superstars of the NBA and WNBA - will reside on the gorgeous, sumptuously decorated Silver Cloud.
Granted, this is nothing very new for the US basketballers, many of whom are millionaires thanks to illustrious basketball careers. They have not stayed in the common digs since 1992, when the USA was first able to bring the "Dream Team" comprised of solely NBA professional athletes. In fact, they have even stayed on a ship before - the Queen Mary 2 in Athens in 2004. Security concerns are cited as the reason for this, along with the players' need to rest after a long season.
I hope the Silver Cloud has some very high bulkheads to accommodate those lanky basketballers! They are unlikely to have many other complaints on this amazing ship.
Competing in comfort
What can the US athletes expect to find in their home away from home? Let's take a look at this lovely vessel with such an important Olympic task.
The Silver Cloud carries 296 passengers in all oceanview suites. It is elegant but understated, with a great space-to-passenger ratio which makes a luxury cruise feel even more luxurious and private yacht-like. Food options include gourmet multi-course dinners at The Restaurant, light and casual fare at the Pool Bar and Grill, "Slow Food" at La Terrazza, and a wine-and-food tasting menu at Le Champagne.
Bars and lounges throughout the ship offer spaces to relax - and we're sure the athletes will need plenty of that! There is also a Show Lounge, a conference room/card room, a library, a casino, a fitness centre and of course a lovely pool area. I'm not sure how much use these will get when the ship is being used as Olympic accommodation, but I definitely wouldn't mind trying them out.
The Silver Cloud will be refitted in August 2017 to sail as a polar expedition ship on Arctic and Antarctic itineraries. However, if you want to experience a small slice of life of as a US basketballer before then - or after! - you can see our range of Silver Cloud cruises. There are also plenty more opportunities to experience Silversea aboard the rest of the luxury fleet. For an oceangoing holiday a little closer to home, find a cruise with Cruise Sale Finder and cruise like an Olympian.