Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Can You Still Cruise the Nile in Style? as a TV Remake of the Classic Film Death on the Nile Is about to Hit Our Screens

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Can You Still Cruise the Nile in Style? as a TV Remake of the Classic Film Death on the Nile Is about to Hit Our Screens

Article excerpt

Byline: JANE CHARTERIS

DOING the Nile in luxury for the first time is a worrying business.

How many daily changes of outfits will be needed?

Trekking around the tombs of Ancient Egypt is sweaty work. Or is it vulgar to change too often? How formal is the formal dinner? A reviewing of the 1978 film of Death on the Nile is not much help, as no one could possibly want to dress like Bette Davis or Maggie Smith. It does suggest at least that red nail varnish is smart, even useful if, having been murdered, you want to indicate who dunnit by daubing an initial on the wall.

Such fretting might seem trivial when faced with the wonders of the ancient world, but the smart cruise has always been as much about being seen as sightseeing. You promenade around the deck, nodding at new acquaintances. In the end, I need not have worried. We live in informal times. And modern Nile cruisers don't have a promenade deck.

I step aboard the Nile Adventurer helped by solicitous and charming young men and the elegantly attired boat manager Hakim shows me to my cabin, or rather my crescent-shaped presidential suite with its vast bed, two televisions, mirrored wardrobe, sitting room and, best of all, its own sundeck. I immediately plan an al fresco cocktail party.

Luckily, fellow Anglophones are few (the deck is not large) and turn out to be personable types who appreciate a sundowner. Before then, there are three days of surprise and delight, during which we absorb the meaning of hieroglyphs and contemplate the falcon-headed god Horus and his bedmate Hathor, goddess of joy. We marvel-at tombs, gasp at the monumental magnificence of the Temple of Karnak, but thrill more to the intimacies of the smaller and bewitching temples of Philae, home to Isis, and Kom Ombo, where croc-headed Sobek rules.

Tours are punctuated by returns to the Adventurer, for lunch, for tea, to sail on, and finally for dinner and entertainment. We dance to Nubian drummers, while a whirling dervish, a beautiful, sensual, gender-bendy boy, turns himself into a kaleidoscopic spinning top. We are even game for the Egyptian evening, when guests and crew are encouraged to wear galabeyas. …

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