The Suite Life Round-Up

| Tuesday, 05 Mar. 2013

From square footage that exceeds many people's homes, to perks worthy of VIP status, here is a detailed comparison of suite offerings from all of the major cruise lines.

Many cruisers don't want to give up on luxury just because they are traveling with their kids, grandkids, or other relatives. Suite options, especially on the newer ships and even on the mainstream cruise lines, are pushing the envelope from square footage that exceeds many people's homes to perks worthy of VIP status.

The main thing that differentiates a suite from a regular cabin is the separation of sleeping areas from other activities. Many of them go far beyond that with large "daytime" living areas with video games, baby grand pianos and large flat panel televisons and a library of DVDs.

Some suites are made for entertaining. They have large dining areas with a table and chairs for eight or more guests. A separate entrance and pantry area for the serving butler to enter is often included with these suites. These suites usually come with refrigerators and microwave ovens. They also often have bars with ice buckets and all kinds of drink glasses on hand.

Suites typically have sleeping accomodations for two people plus extra bedrooms or other sleeping options. Some suites come with enough beds to sleep up to 10 people. Most suites have extravagant bathrooms with hot-tub style bathtubs, often with an ocean view. Plenty of deck space is also usually provided, often with a separate hot tub outside. Walk-in closets are also the norm.

The newest trend in the suite life is "Spa Suites." These are typically placed around a semi-private open deck area, shared with other suite dwellers, with a swimming pool, hot tub and private cabanas available for guests to call in a masseuse for an on-site massage.

Pricing for all suites vary, but usually the first couple pays the full cruise fare and extra guests pay a portion of that fare.

Here is a line-by-line breakdown of the suites available at sea:

Azamara Cruises

  • Penthouse Suite: 793 square feet

These suites have the largest verandas on both the Azamara Journey and the Azamara Quest at 233 square feet. The master bedroom in the Penthouse Suite also features a walk-in closet.

  • Royal Suite: 545 to 657 square feet

Both the Royal Suite and the Penthouse Suite feature a master bathroom with whirlpool tub. There is a separate living room with sofa bed and an additional guest bathroom.

  • Sky Suite: 326 square feet

These three suites all feature a private veranda, flat screen TV, and a DVD/CD player. All suites come standard with butler service, afternoon canapés and tea service, two nights of specialty dining, complimentary water, soda, and a bottle of champagne.

Carnival Cruise Lines

  • Spa Suite: 405 square feet

Exclusively on the Carnival Splendor (June 2008), these spa suites will be adjacent to the Cloud 9 Spa, and accessible by a private elevator. Privileges include complimentary fitness classes and unlimited access to the spa's thermal suite and Thalassotherapy pool.

  • Category 12 Penthouse Suite: 415 to 430 square feet

These are Carnival's largest suites. They include all the Category 11 features plus they have a whirlpool bath and a walk-in closet.

  • Category 11 Suite: 315 to 340 square feet

All these suites feature private balcony, separate sitting area, and a bed with an 8-inch spring mattress and high quality sheets. In addition, the Fantasy-class ships now feature remodeled bathrooms, and flat screen TVs after their recent makeovers.

Celebrity Cruises

  • Penthouse Suite: 1,219 to 2,530 square feet

All of Celebrity's Penthouse Suites have a veranda with hot tub and lounge seating, but the Penthouse Suite on the Millennium-class vessels has the largest veranda at 1,098 square feet (including a wet bar). This particular suite also has exercise equipment, a baby grand piano, and butler's pantry.

  • Royal Suite: 631 to 748 square feet

The Royal Suites on the Millennium-class ships and the new Celebrity Solstice (December 2008) have a veranda with hot tub. The suites have a separate living room and dining area, and the bathroom has a whirlpool tub.

  • Celebrity Suite (Millennium-class and Solstice): 467 to 499 square feet

This suite on the Millennium-class ships has no balcony, only floor-to-ceiling windows. On the Solstice, this suite and above have a veranda, a 52" LCD TV, and a wireless connection. Both suites also have a computer with internet access.

  • Sky Suite: 308 to 425 square feet

The Sky Suites and above have a bathroom with tub, and enjoy the privilege of a full in-suite breakfast as well as lunch and dinner service, and an afternoon tea.

  • Century Suite (Century only): 228 square feet

Along with all the above suites, the Century Suite enjoys 24-hour butler service. These suites also include complimentary espresso and cappuccino.

  • Aqua Class Stateroom (Solstice only): 245 square feet

This contemporary class of veranda staterooms is exclusive to the Celebrity Solstice. Guests in AquaClass will enjoy unlimited access to the AquaSpa relaxation room, and Blu -- the exclusive specialty restaurant.

  • Concierge Class Stateroom: 217 to 248 square feet

Guests staying in any of the above suites and staterooms will enjoy welcome champagne, daily hors d'oeuvres, pillow menu, pillow top mattresses, early embarkation and debarkation, and express luggage delivery.

  • Family Veranda Suite: 575 to 681 square feet

Exclusive to the new Celebrity Solstice, the Family Veranda Suite will offer two bedrooms, a veranda, and a wireless connection.

Costa Cruises

  • Samsura Spa Suites: 250 square feet

These spa suites are exclusive to the Costa Selena and the Costa Concordia. Guests have unlimited access to the Samsura Spa's Thalassotherapy pools, sauna and thermal bath, and guests will receive two complimentary spa treatments.

  • Penthouse Suite / Gran Suite: Up to 649 square feet
  • Panorama Suite: Up to 548 square feet
  • Suite: Up to 337 square feet

All full suites enjoy butler service.

  • Mini-Suite: Up to 279 square feet

All Costa Suites have a spacious marble bathroom with whirlpool tub. Guests will enjoy priority embarkation, complimentary sparkling wine and cold canapés, and in-suite dining. Suite guests are also entitled to a complimentary evening for two at one of the specialty restaurants. (costacruise.com)

Crystal Cruises

  • Crystal Penthouse: 982 or 1,345 square feet (Serenity/Symphony)

The Crystal Penthouse includes a large veranda, separate living and dining areas, and an ocean view from the Jacuzzi in the master bath. On the Crystal Serenity, the suite even has a treadmill.

  • Penthouse Suite: 538 or 491 square feet (Serenity/Symphony)
  • Penthouse: 403 or 367 square feet (Serenity/Symphony)

All above suites offer a private veranda, full Jacuzzi bathtub, walk-in closet, and butler service. These suites also include internet access, in-suite dining, and complimentary wine (upon embarkation), bottled water, and soft drinks. (crystalcruises.com)

Cunard Line

  • Q1 -- Grand Duplex (QM2): 2,249 square feet

This duplex is two stories, with a sweeping staircase to its second floor bedrooms. The suite includes personal exercise equipment and a large but not so private terrace that can be seen from the public decks below.

  • Q1 -- Grand Suites: 1,184 to 2,131 square feet
  • QS -- Grand Suites (QE2): 575 to 777 square feet
  • Q2 -- (QM2): 1,194 1,566 square feet
  • Q2 -- Master Suites (Queen Victoria): 1,100 square feet
  • Q2-Q3 -- Outside Suites (QE2): 355 square feet
  • Q3 -- Royal Suites (QM2): 796 square feet
  • Q3-Q4 -- Penthouse (Queen Victoria): 520 to 758 square feet
  • Q5–Q7 -- Queen Suites: 506 to 771 square feet

On the QM2 and the Queen Victoria, guests of the Queens Grill Class (Q1-Q7) enjoy a bottle of champagne and strawberries upon embarkation, complimentary bottled water and in-suite bar set-up. Additional privileges for suites Q1 to Q4 include priority tender service and priority disembarkation.

  • P1-P4 -- Princess Suites (Queen Victoria): 335 to 513 square feet
  • P1-P3 -- Princess Suites (QM2): up to 381 square feet (some are smaller)
  • P1-P4 -- Outside Suites: 239 to 241 square feet

On the Queen Victoria, the Princess Grill suites receive sparkling wine on embarkation, no butler service. A private elevator accesses the first-class accommodations. All the above suites and their specified Grill restaurants and lounges are exclusive only to Queens and Princess Grill suite passengers only.

Disney Cruise Line

  • Royal Suite: 1,029 square feet

A Royal Suite is Disney's largest stateroom at sea at 1,029 square feet complete with a veranda, two bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms (including whirlpool tubs), media library, pantry, wet bar, and concierge service.

  • Two-Bedroom Suite: 945 square feet
  • One-Bedroom Suite: 614 square feet

All these suites feature a private veranda, Euro-top mattresses and premium linens. Guests of these suites enjoy daily canapés, fruit and cookies, and the option of in-suite dining. Suite guests also have access to a concierge service as early as 105 days before their cruise.

Holland America Line

  • Penthouse Verandah Suites: 1,126 to 1,318 square feet

On the Vista-class ships (and the soon to be launched Eurodam), the Penthouse Veranda suite has a master bedroom with a king-size bed, whirlpool bath and separate shower. Additionally there is a living room and a verandah with a hot tub and outdoor banquette for al fresco dining.

  • Deluxe Verandah Suites: 488 to 700 square feet

Other privileges of the above suites include priority boarding of tenders and the use of the exclusive Neptune Lounge. The Neptune Lounge is exclusive to suite guests, offering a daily breakfast service, evening hors d'oeuvres, and concierge services.

  • Superior Verandah Suites (Vista-class): 362 to 389 square feet
  • Verandah Suites: 284 to 398 square feet

Consider that even the least opulent staterooms on HAL's ships are outfitted with the plush Euro-top Mariner Dream Bed, massage shower heads, flat screen TVs, DVD players, and fresh flowers.

MSC Cruises

  • Suites With Balcony: 269 square feet

These suites have a double bed and a bathroom with tub. There is also a mini bar and internet access.

Norwegian Cruise Line

  • Garden Villa Suites: Up to 5,750 square feet

These three bedroom suites are some of the biggest in the industry. You can host a party for 100, or have friends and family over for dinner. The Garden Villas include a private terrace with a six-person hot tub. Other amenities include three luxury bathrooms, a living room, a separate dining room, plus a personal computer with wireless internet access.

  • Owners Suites: Up to 1,195 square feet

Upon arrival in both the Garden Villas and the Owner's suites, guests can pop open their complimentary bottle of champagne, while their butler unpacks their luggage. Plus, gourmet hors d'oeuvres are delivered to the suite, every evening.

  • Courtyard Villas: Up to 572 square feet

The guests of the Courtyard Villas and above have exclusive access to a private lounge area complete with Balinese-style lounges, a pool with retractable sunroof, a separate upstairs sun deck, hot tub, fitness area, and stream room.

  • Penthouse Suites: Up to 676 square feet

All the above Villas and Suites enjoy butler service, an in-suite espresso/cappuccino machine, and priority boarding of tenders.

  • Suites: Up to 504 square feet

Even NCL's smallest suites are furnished with premium linens and have a flat screen TV and DVD player. Other privileges include concierge service, priority embarkation and disembarkation, and a 24-hour in-suite room service menu. (ncl.com)

Princess Cruises

  • Grand Suite With Balcony: 730 to 1,329 square feet

These spacious one-bedroom suites are only available on the Sapphire, Diamond, Caribbean, Golden, Star, and Grand Princess. They have a whirlpool tub and separate shower, dining tables inside and out, a wet bar, and a personal computer.

  • Owner's Suite With Balcony: 786 to 962 square feet

Exclusive to Pacific and Tahitian Princess, these one-bedroom suites have a large bathroom with whirlpool tub, a separate sitting room with dining area, and a guest bathroom, too.

  • Family Suite: Approx. 430 square feet

Each suite is, actually, two-self-contained staterooms interconnecting through a large living room, and sharing an oversized private balcony. Each suite sleeps up to 8 people.

  • Suite With Balcony: 461 to 933 square feet

All full suite passengers enjoy additional privileges. These include complimentary web access in the internet café, a one-time free mini-bar setup, free laundry services, use of the Lotus Spa Thermal Suite (select ships), and the use of the exclusive Disembarkation Lounge.

  • Mini-Suite With Balcony: 280 to 536 square feet

All full suites and Mini-Suites include a welcome glass of champagne, two TVs, a separate sitting area with a sofa bed, and a bathroom with a tub and shower. On the Dawn Princess, Sea Princess, and Sun Princess, the Mini-Suite has a private bedroom.

  • Oceanview Mini-Suite: 280 to 302 square feet

The Oceanview Mini-Suites are exclusive to the Coral Princess and the Island Princess. This stateroom is the same as the above Mini-Suite, except it has no balcony, just an oceanview window.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

  • Master Suite: 1,021 to 2,002 square feet

The Master Suites on the Seven Seas Mariner and the Seven Seas Voyager have 2 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, with one of the suites on the Mariner having close to 800 square feet of veranda space.

  • Grand Suite: 687 to 987 square feet

The Grand Suite on the Seven Seas Voyager features a soaking tub that looks out over the sea.

  • Mariner Suite (Seven Seas Mariner): 739 square feet
  • Voyager Suite (Seven Seas Voyager): 604 square feet
  • Seven Seas Suite (Mariner/Voyager): 545 to 847 square feet
  • Horizon Suite (Seven Seas Mariner): 627 square feet
  • Navigator Suite (Seven Seas Navigator): 495 square feet
  • Penthouse: 356 to 449 square feet

All above suites include butler service, welcome champagne, mini-bar with fridge, and in-suite dining (course by course, if preferred).

Royal Caribbean International

  • Presidential Family Suites: 2,025 square feet

Definitely the big daddy of Royal Caribbean's accommodations is their Presidential Family suite available only on the Freedom-class vessels. A group of 14 can sleep in this four-bedroom suite, and its 810 square foot veranda includes a hot tub, wet bar, lounge chairs and an al fresco dining area.

  • Royal Suites: 1,175 to 1,783 square feet

On both the Voyager-class and Freedom-class ships, the Royal suites also have a balcony with private hot tub. Most Royal Suites also feature a master bedroom with a king sized bed and some suites even have a baby grand piano.

  • Owner's Suites: 368 to 823 square feet

All of the Owner's Suites have a private balcony, queen-size bed and a separate living area with a queen-size sofa bed. Some also include a bathtub and a mini-bar among their amenities.

  • Royal Family Suites: 526 to 844 square feet

On most ships, the Royal Family Suite has enough space to accommodate eight people. All have a separate living area, two bathrooms (one with a bathtub), and a balcony.

  • Grand Suites: 456 to 513 square feet

Guests reserved in the Grand Suites or above can take advantage of the Concierge Club Lounge 24 hours a day, available on select ships. This lounge offers a continental breakfast every morning, hors d'oeuvres every evening, business services, and assistance with onboard reservations.

  • Junior Suites: 260 to 418 square feet

The Junior Suite comes with a private balcony, sitting area, and some have a bathtub.

Silversea Cruises

  • Grand Suite + Rossellini Suite: 1,449 to 1611 square feet

These two bedroom suites have a living room, dining area and two or three verandas.

  • Owner's Suite: 916 to 1,544 square feet

The Owner's Suite on the Silver Shadow and Silver Whisper has two bedrooms, two bathrooms with separate shower and Jacuzzi, and a 200 square foot veranda.

  • Royal Suite: 1,206 to 1,528 square feet

These two bedroom suites also have two verandas. Guests staying in the above suites have their own Lavazza Espresso Maker and have the privilege of complimentary butler service.

  • Silver Suite: 633 to 824 square feet

The above suites can order afternoon canapés on request and have the opportunity to have dinner at the Officer's Table.

  • Medallion Suite: 602 square feet (Silver Shadow or Silver Whisper)

These one-bedroom veranda suites have a separate living room with dining area and a full sized bath and separate shower.

  • Veranda Suite: 344 to 405 square feet
  • Terrace Suite: 287 square feet (Silver Shadow or Silver Whisper)

The Veranda Suite has a private teak veranda with patio furniture and the Terrace Suite has glass doors opening to a shared teak veranda.

  • Vista Suite: 240 to 287 square feet

No balcony in the Vista Suites, only a large picture window. But like all the above suites, this suite has a full-sized tub and privileges that include complimentary beverages (champagne, too!) and in-suite formal dining.

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