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Wind Surf Capt. Pedro Pinto checks navigation settings on the ship's bridge.

JD Lasica / Special to Cruiseable

Wind Surf Capt. Pedro Pinto checks navigation settings on the ship's bridge.

A talk with the captain of Wind Surf (Video)

Capt. Pedro Pinto explains Windstar Cruises' open bridge policy

The sails go up as Wind Surf departs from Barbuda in the Caribbean.
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableThe sails go up as Wind Surf departs from Barbuda in the Caribbean.
This is part 4 in a series about our March-April 2017 sailing on Windstar's Wind Surf. Also see:
 

On our Caribbean cruise aboard the sleek Wind Surf, which ended 10 days ago, one of the highlights came when I spent a few minutes chatting up the ship's captain on the bridge. Capt. Pedro Pinto, who hails from Portugal, has risen through the ranks of Windstar Cruises over the past four years to helm the cruise line's flagship.

Windstar is the only cruise line I know of with an “open bridge” policy, which allows guests to wander up to the bridge and interact with the captain and crew when the ship is at sea. It's a great way to connect passengers with the people running the ship and as a way to demystify some of the cruise experience. 

Here's my 7-minute video interview with Wind Surf Capt. Pedro Pinto, which I edited for brevity: 

A few quick highlights of our conversation and a few photos from our cruise:

• On Windstar's open bridge policy: "This becomes like a small family," Pinto says, with frequent interactions between crew members and passengers.  

• The size of the Windstar flagship, with 300 guests, is a big selling point of Wind Surf (her sister ships are even smaller). "It's really like a group of friends sailing around the world," Pinto says. 

• What kind of passengers does Windstar attract? Those who prefer a calm atmosphere with open decks and high quality service and dining, rather than the crowds and frenetic atmosphere found on larger ships, he says. 

• Pinto does get to leave the ship while in port. His favorite destinations are Norway, Iceland and the culture- and history-rich seaports of the Mediterranean. 

Wind Surf Capt. Pedro Pinto with a few of his executive officers greet the ship's guests.
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableWind Surf Capt. Pedro Pinto with a few of his executive officers greet the ship's guests.

Some more photos from the bridge

We were happy to see deck cadets like Lottie making their way up the ranks on Wind Surf. (Click to enlarge.)
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableWe were happy to see deck cadets like Lottie making their way up the ranks on Wind Surf. (Click to enlarge.)

 

The control panel on the bridge of Wind Surf, featuring hydraulic motors and more.
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableThe control panel on the bridge of Wind Surf, featuring hydraulic motors and more. (Click to enlarge.)

 

A Transas Marine navigation unit on Wind Surf.
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableA Transas Marine navigation unit on Wind Surf. (Click to enlarge.)

 

The Furuno MU231, a multi-purpose marine LCD radar unit on the bridge of Wind Surf.
JD Lasica / Special to CruiseableThe Furuno MU231, a multi-purpose marine LCD radar unit on the bridge of Wind Surf. (Click to enlarge.)

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JD Lasica
I'm co-founder, Editor and chief cat herder at Cruiseable. Follow your cruise bliss to any land where it may lead. Let's connect! I'm @jdlasica on Twitter.

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