3: Promenade Deck Lounges and Outside Decks
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Above and below: A rather tatty looking stairwell (above) on board the Isla de Botafoc in 2003 even featured signage in the original BR corporate typeface (below).
This is on the upper passenger deck, the former Promenade Deck (now referred to as the 'Atlántico Deck'), on the starboard side just aft of the former Tea Bar/Lifesavers/Coasters/Globetrotter/Mariners, now in its latest guise as the Salón Atlántico. All lobby and stairwell spaces such as this in the main passenger areas were thoroughly refurbished in 2004, this area receiving wooden panelling in place of the original hard-wearing but now grubby Sealink finish.
Above & below: The Salón Atlántico in 2003 (above) and 2005 (below), both shots looking forward on the starboard side. The former view highlights the fact that this was once fully branded in Stena's favoured Globetrotter diamond styling. Indeed, the ship ran for a period with both a Globetrotter Cafeteria on the deck below as well as this space which served as a Globetrotter cafe or restaurant depending on route and demand. Intriguingly, the later, lower picture shows 'Mariners Brasserie' on the glass dividing panels. This was the name assumed by P&O Stena restaurants before the introduction of Langans in 1999. In the earlier picture, the Mariners name has been covered by UMAFISA stickers, but these were evidently removed after the company's takeover by Balearia, exposing the old brand name once again.
Above & below: The Salón Atlántico retains much of the Globetrotter decor, with this mural (above) at the stern and diamonds fronting the forward servery area (below). Both pictures taken in 2005.
Above & below: Two further overall views of the Salón Atlántico showing the changes implemented in the 2004 refit. Whereas in 2003 (above) the lounge had barely changed from its final UK days, it was latterly fitted with banks of somewhat tatty reclining seats. This seating had been relocated from the Salón Barcelona just astern, which received new fittings at the same time - this change reflects the status of the two adjacent spaces, with the 'Atlántico' generally closed off except on busy sailings whilst the 'Barcelona' is always open. Completing the fascinating potted history of this space's seating, the Stena-era chairs (complete with diamond detailing to match the general decor) seen in the above picture are identical to those formerly found on the Pride of Provence (ex-Stena Empereur) in her Horizon Lounge which latterly found their way on board GA Ferries' Anthi Marina, having crossed over during the ex-Provence's brief time with the Greek company.
Above & below: Astern is the 'Salón Barcelona' which, as previously noted, emerged from the 2004 refit with upgraded reclining seating. This space, once the Motorists' Lounge but latterly a fully-branded Harbour Coffee Company under P&O Stena Line, retains the characteristic large oval-shaped windows at the after end (below). Both these pictures are from 2005.
Above & below: At the forward end of the Salón Barcelona could, until 2003, be found this luggage store (above), cunningly created out of the old Harbour Coffee Company servery area, still complete with HCC logos (below). Inside, rather bizarrely, the area was still fitted out with sinks and cupboards from its former incarnation.
Above: As with many of the other remaining vestiges of the ship's UK career, all traces of the Harbour Coffee Company (including the remaining logos as well as the standard black and white framed photographs) were swept away in 2004, at which time the baggage area was opened up for the provision of refreshment facilities.
Above: A view of the outside deck aft of the Salón Barcelona. The self-contained deck bar still bears the UMAFISA name.
Above & below: Outside seating on the uppermost deck, Bridge Deck. This area was opened up to the public in 1982 and fitted with dozens of the standard-issue Sealink moulded fibreglass deck seating, still to be found on dozens of ex-Sealink ships.
Above & below: More deck scenes, this time back on the Boat Deck, aft (above) and forward (below) on the starboard side.
Above: Up on the bridge of the Isla de Botafoc in August 2003.