Prepare to be inspired by the incredible journey of Marty and Jess Ansen, a retired couple from Australia who have redefined retirement by embarking on an astonishing 51 back-to-back cruises. Their epic adventure, which began last year, has not only allowed them to satisfy their insatiable wanderlust but has also turned out to be more cost-effective than residing in a retirement home.
For Marty and Jess, cruising has been a lifelong passion, a love affair with the open sea that has brought them immense joy for decades. Like so many others, the pandemic disrupted their cruising plans, but when the cruise industry began to rebound, they decided to take their passion to an entirely new level.
Their extraordinary journey commenced in June last year when they boarded the Coral Princess cruise ship. Drawn in by the allure of sumptuous buffets, captivating entertainment, and fierce table tennis competitions, they set sail on the adventure of a lifetime. Fast forward over a year, and they remain onboard, having outlasted even the ship’s captain.
Marty, the cruise maestro, shared their secret to this incredible voyage, saying, “Eventually, I said to my agent, ‘Look, whatever comes, book it,’ and that’s how it got to be such a long cruise.” Their unwavering dedication to the maritime lifestyle has led them to book 51 consecutive cruises, making them the most devoted passengers the ship has ever seen.
Ren van Rooyen, the ship’s hotel manager, describes Jess and Marty as an extension of their shipboard family. “We always joke that I go away and I come back, and it’s like seeing my family – my mum and dad again – they’re like my second mum and dad on board,” said Van Rooyen.
Setting Sail on an Epic Journey
Life aboard the Coral Princess is a true dream for Jess and Marty. They relish every moment, from the gourmet meals included in their cruise package to the daily housekeeping pampering. This extraordinary lifestyle, they insist, saves them money compared to a retirement home and fosters heartfelt connections with the ship’s crew.
Just last month, the ship’s crew organized a surprise birthday celebration for Jess, a testament to the deep bonds formed during this remarkable journey. While most tourists disembark after a week or two, Jess and Marty have established an enviable routine that keeps them fit and entertained.
Their days begin with an exhilarating hour of table tennis, a shared passion that brings them immense joy. As Jess puts it, “We do it together, and we have a lot of fun.” These spirited matches are the perfect prelude to indulging in the ship’s sumptuous buffets.
With over 450 consecutive days of cruising etched into their adventurous legacy, Jess and Marty firmly believe they would continue this odyssey for the rest of their lives if given the chance.
In a world where retirement often conjures images of quiet contemplation, these intrepid explorers have redefined what it means to live the dream. Jess and Marty Ansen are living proof that life’s grandest adventures await those who dare to keep sailing against the currents. Their story inspires all, reminding us that retirement is not about slowing down but about living life to the fullest, even if it means sailing worldwide.