Richard Somerville is a world-renowned climate scientist and an expert on communicating clearly to the public what scientists have learned about climate change.
The Cook Islands became self-governing in 1965. After the country’s first general election, the late Sir Albert Henry became the first Prime Minister. Helen’s late husband, Hugh, was the second son of Albert Henry, and the couple decided at that time to return to the Cook Islands to participate and assist in the development of the small island nation.
Helen and Hugh arrived in August 1969, along with four young sons, and quickly became involved in the local community. Helen was a founding member of a pre-school learning center, a member of the local primary school committee, President of the Hospital Comforts Committee, and Patron of the Cook Islands Breast Cancer Foundation.
As the family grew older, her interests also evolved. She became the Secretary of the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce, President of the Business and Professional Women’s Association, and a member of the international organization PPSEAWA (Pan-Pacific & South-East Asia Women’s Association).
For many years, Helen and Hugh operated an inbound tourism company and also organized ongoing Cook Islands’ educational programs for Elderhostel and Pacific Island Travel Groups.
Now retired, Helen retains an interest in her sons’ lovely resort, Tamanu Beach, located on the island of Aitutaki, with its world-famous lagoon. If you visit the resort, you may find Helen somewhere in the tropical garden, weeding and pruning. Early in 2013, Helen published her memoir, My Kotuku of the South Seas: Living and Loving in Rarotonga.
Helen is proud to say her four sons all live and work in the Cook Islands. Her daughter Katherine lives in Portland, Oregon, but returns annually to become an “island girl” again. Helen has 15 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren and is now happily married to John Hay. They share a love of travel, particularly in the Pacific. Helen and John reside on Rarotonga, the capital island of the Cook Islands. Helen says everyone should come to the Cooks and visit “heaven while they are still on Earth.”
Helen is delighted to share her experiences with guests on The Gauguin in her talk entitled “Reflections on 40 Years of Living in the Cook Islands.”
other guest hosts appearing on the m/s Paul Gauguin
A rising star among French magicians, Nicolas del Pozo perfected his skills in Las Vegas, where he met the greatest illusionists in the world. He since has dazzled audiences around the globe. See this mesmerizing show from this master of illusion aboard The Gauguin.
Performing as Colour Blue, Thomas Rowland and Nathan Mills combine harmony, vocals, acoustic guitar, and an African Djembe drum to put their own unique twist on popular music. Join us aboard multiple sailings of The Gauguin to enjoy their performance of a huge mix of music ranging from the 1960s to the present day.
Joan Druett’s accidental discovery of the grave of a young American whaling wife sparked her interest in the history of life at sea and inspired her to write several acclaimed books on the subject. Join us aboard The Gauguin as this expert in maritime history shares fascinating stories of life on the high seas.
The husband-and-wife team of Joan and Ron Druett have devoted their careers to delving into maritime history through literature and art. Join us aboard The Gauguin as this award-winning author and internationally recognized artist each presents a series of lectures that entertainingly showcase their expertise in the field.
A native of Montréal, Canada, Pascale Guertin is a well-rounded musician who was born to sing. Join us aboard The Gauguin, as this talented artist performs Remembering Edith Piaf and From Argentina with Love.
June Hargrove, a renowned specialist in the history of 19th-century art, has traveled the globe, sharing her expertise on the art of Paul Gauguin and his contemporaries. Her lectures provide an exciting introduction to Gauguin’s life and art in the context of the islands that The Gauguin will be visiting—as you’ll discover when you join us aboard.
Modern classical soprano Heather Ivy floats effortlessly among Broadway favorites, opera classics, and pop standards, entertaining audiences around the world with her signature shows. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a memorable performance by this talented singer.
The Director of Translation and Interpreting at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Scott Homler interprets, translates, and lectures on a variety of subjects and often incorporates art as a primary resource for discussions on cultural identity. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a series of lectures offering insights into the life and work of artist Paul Gauguin.
As a NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador since 2003, Greg Redfern has brought the wonder, beauty, and excitement of our universe to audiences for decades. His one-on-one style resonates with his passion and knowledge. Join us aboard The Gauguin as he shares that passion during lectures on astronomy.
A professional magician since 1998 and TV Star Magician in Brazil, Gustavo Vierini is skilled in illusion in all its forms. Be sure to be aboard as he brings his unique blend of magic and humor aboard select sailings of The Gauguin.
Accomplished Latin and ballroom dancers Ryno Van Den Berg and Elena Tokarenko have won high scores in prestigious competitions in Hong Kong, Russia, England, Taipei, South Africa, France, and beyond. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a performance by these highly accomplished and charismatic entertainers.
Daniel and Sam Baron bring a combined 60 years of grape growing and winemaking experience on three continents to their approach to making Complant wines. Their goal is to use artisanal practices and minimal intervention to produce delicious wines of vibrancy that seamlessly express time, place, and the cultivated vine. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a wine tasting and lecture by these passionate winemakers.
A professional astrologer with more than 30 years’ experience, Leslie McGuirk has appeared on radio and television and in magazines, and is a popular presenter and author. Join us aboard The Gauguin to discover the evolution of astrology, its place in history—and how it pertains to you.
Robert Carpenter has been conducting research on coral reefs for the past 30 years in locations throughout the world, including the Caribbean, Hawaii, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Guam, Palau, and French Polynesia. Join us aboard The Gauguin for informative lectures by this leading coral reef expert.
Expect an extremely fun evening of dancing and singing when Marc and Abi come aboard! Don’t miss very special sailings of The Gauguin, as this talented duo performs an exciting musical explosion of upbeat classics through the decades.
Co-recipient with Al Gore of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 and recipient of a prestigious fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation, Professor John E. Hay has devoted his life to studying the environment. Join this distinguished author and scholar aboard The Gauguin, and benefit from his expertise during a special presentation.
Douglas Peebles has been photographing the South Pacific and Hawaii for about 40 years, and his work has been published in nearly 70 books and several other publications, including National Geographic Traveler, Islands, Travel Holiday, GEO, Hawaii, and the UK’s Traveller magazine. Join us when Douglas comes aboard for photography presentations, small-group excursions, and a critique of your photographs.
One of the UK’s most in-demand singers, Jonny Ross performs a varied repertoire designed to delight audiences of all ages. Join us aboard The Gauguin for live performances by this talented singer.
The Rolling Keys Duo (Sarah Watson and Will Stead) are two session musicians who have crafted a sound that has proven successful all over the world. Join us aboard select sailings of The Gauguin for a toe-tapping performance of popular classics from the Fifties to current chart hits.
As a museum director, scientist, and explorer Edwin Sobey has traveled the world. Along the way, he has lectured and conducted research on seven continents and all the oceans. Join us aboard The Gauguin as Ed presents a series of lectures on marine topics including whales, coral reefs, ocean acidification, plastics in the sea, and renewable energy.
A television executive for nearly two decades and later a corporate board member, Chrisopher Kelly has dedicated his retirement to pursuing his lifelong passion for military history. Join us aboard The Gauguin as this award-winning author and presenter provides a lecture series on military history and WWII in the Pacific.
A native of New Zealand, Cluny Macpherson spent 45 years of his professional life living, teaching, and carrying out research in the Pacific. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a series of lectures that summarize the history of the Pacific region, with examples from the islands visited on this cruise.
Minda Larsen has performed in New York City, across the country, and in more than 80 countries across all seven seas. Come aboard select sailings of The Gauguin, and enjoy a performance by the vocalist named “Best Cabaret Singer 2015” in New York City and nominated for “Best Female Vocalist 2015” by Broadway World.
Jeff and Daleen Steichen are the creators and owners of Batch 206 Distillery located in downtown Seattle, Washington. Batch 206 Distillery is a true, small-batch artisan facility, handcrafting products in small batches on a 1,000-liter, handmade custom Kothe still. They will join The Gauguin on the June 17, 2020, Society Islands & Tuamotus voyage and present seminars and tastings of their Pacific Northwest handcrafted spirits.
Award-winning chef Jean-Robert de Cavel has maintained a Mobil 5-star restaurant, opened several restaurants in the Cincinnati area, served as Chef-in-Residence at the Midwest Culinary Institute at Cincinnati State, and been named a Master Chef by Maîtres Cuisiniers de France. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a lecture and culinary demonstration by this acclaimed chef and entrepreneur.
A star of musical stages across North America, Josh Young has charmed audiences and won numerous awards for his work. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a thrilling performance by this acclaimed Broadway star.
A dynamic speaker who specializes in Pacific Island cultural arts, Dr. Teri Sowell is a distinguished researcher, author, and teacher. She also has curated many art exhibitions nationwide. Join us aboard The Gauguin as Teri weaves together threads of past and present traditions in a series of lively lectures that will enrich your cultural experience.
A strolling magician and elite member of the Magic Castle—the legendary private club for magicians in Hollywood—Patricia Magicia delights audiences with her skill and charm, always with French flair. Join us aboard The Gauguin for a dazzling demonstration of Patricia’s unique talents.
Robin and Danuta Pfeiffer are the owners and winemakers of Pfeiffer Winery and Vineyards, an ultra-premium, sustainable, 70-acre vineyard with an international reputation for producing world-class Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris. Enjoy a wine lecture and a tasting of Pfeiffer Winery wines when Robin and Danuta join us aboard The Gauguin.
Tom O’Neil has helped a wide range of people, from students to CEOs, achieve their goals through his best-selling books, motivational speeches, and one-on-one coaching. Let this internationally recognized expert in personal development and career management inspire you with his live presentations on board the m/s Paul Gauguin.
Maurice Bligh is a man with mission: to set the record straight about his famous forebear, who is widely known as “Captain Bligh” of the legendary HMS Bounty. Join Maurice aboard The Gauguin as he reveals historic truths about Admiral William Bligh — and explains how Hollywood got it all wrong: there never was a ship called HMS Bounty!
Kim Stare Wallace has been passionate about the wine industry since her father founded Dry Creek Vineyard in 1972. Don quickly learned every aspect of the business upon marrying Kim. Join us aboard The Gauguin for the couple’s presentation on Dry Creek Vineyard and a tasting of their excellent wines.
A journalist and educator specializing in astronomy, Dan Benedict has been introducing cruise passengers with an interest in stargazing to the wonders of the night sky since 1998. Join us for a series of presentations and nighttime star watches led by this fascinating expert.
Acclaimed academic, Fulbright scholar, author, teacher, lecturer, and art historian and curator Caroline Boyle-Turner is a perennially popular guest host aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin. Join us aboard as she enriches your appreciation for our ship’s namesake and his circle of friends.
Come sail with us on our 2021 Reunion Cruise—a reunion for past guests of Paul Gauguin Cruises and a gala welcome for newcomers which presents a number of unique events, including special guests, a festive dinner, cocktail and block parties, opportunities to mingle with senior staff and crew, and more. This 11-night Tuamotus & Society Islands voyage includes two visits to Motu Mahana, Paul Gauguin Cruises’ private islet.