Sometimes there’s cause to really splash out on your cruise holiday. It may be in celebration of a big birthday, you might have received a promotion at work, or you could simply want to show your loved ones just how much they mean to you.
Either way, the cruise industry has many great ways for you to do this. One of the best is giving yourself access to certain exclusive areas where only the best service is offered and you receive plenty of extras you wouldn’t normally be able to enjoy.
Sometimes known as a ‘ship within a ship’ concept, these areas allow you to feel like a VIP and enjoy everything from your own private pool to fabulous fine dining venues. Here are some of the best examples.
The Haven – Norwegian Cruise Line
Book a suite in NCL’s The Haven and you’ll be given a keycard that allows access to this sumptuous space at the top of the ship. In your plush accommodation, you will enjoy butler and concierge service around the clock and the option to dine in your suite from a special menu. You’ll also be able to savour fantastic flavours at the Haven Restaurant and then sip an after-dinner cocktail in the Haven Lounge with spectacular views in every direction.
The perks of being a Haven guest start before you even board the ship, though. You will be personally escorted on board from the terminal and can even delight in a limousine transfer, if you opt for a Garden Villa. The priority treatment doesn’t end there, either. You’ll have first choice when it comes to dining times and shore excursions, as well as plenty of little treats delivered directly to your suite door.
And, when all that gets too much, you can always relax in the elegant Haven Courtyard, where your own secluded pool and sun deck await.
MSC Yacht Club – MSC Cruises
MSC Cruises’ Yacht Club is a very similar concept, with the added benefit that it also allows children to be part of the fun. Once you’ve decided to book a suite here, you’re free to lounge away the days on the One Pool Deck, watch exclusive live entertainment and sample delicious afternoon tea in the Top Sail Lounge, and take your seat in the gourmet MSC YC restaurant at whatever time you choose.
You’ll also be able to enjoy a range of complimentary extras that other guests typically have to pay for. These include Thermal Suite access within the spa, internet packages and beverages across the ship. Plus, your own private butler will be on-hand to help with anything you need, 24 hours a day. What’s more, when you find yourself hungry or thirsty outside of mealtimes, the minibar in your suite and the buffet on the One Pool Deck are always in easy reach.
You can even make your cruise extra special by arranging your own tailor-made shore excursions. Whilst there may be an added cost for this, standard guests won’t even get this option.
The Retreat – Celebrity Cruises
Currently only available on Celebrity Edge, but due to be rolled out to more ships in the fleet soon, The Retreat is a private area developed exclusively for suite class guests. Designed by Kate Hoppen MBE, who you may recognise from Dragon’s Den, there are plenty of areas, both inside and outside, where you can relax away from the rest of the ship.
The Retreat Sun Deck has plenty of comfortable cabanas and swinging chairs that allow you to find your Zen amidst a calming atmosphere. As Pool Butlers wait on you hand and foot, you can find a quiet corner in the hot tub, main pool or soft sofas. Then, The Retreat Lounge gives you a shaded area for reflection and an ideal spot from which to enjoy the sunset.
Nearby, Luminae serves some of the best food on the ship. Ingredient-led dishes with extra thoughtful presentation will delight your pallet and leave you in no doubt that this is the best place to be if you want to be pampered.
Queens and Princess Grill Suites – Cunard
Since 1936, Cunard has given its guests the chance to pay extra for a higher tier of service. Back then, you would pay for just a single evening of dining in an exclusive restaurant, but nowadays you can give yourself access to this, and other perks, for the entirety of your cruise.
Choosing to stay in a Queens or Princess Grill Suite not only provides you with a range of in-suite perks like a complimentary bar, iPad and champagne on arrival (there’s even a PS4 in some of the update Queens Grill suites on board Queen Mary 2), but you can also come and go as you like in the Grills Lounge. However, the highlight may be the delectable offerings available in the Grill Restaurants, where Cunard’s fine dining reaches its pinnacle.
Other extras include fresh fruit and flowers, personalised stationary and priority booking when it comes to dining and shore excursions.
If you would like to book your suite in one of these exclusive areas, our team will be happy to help. Call us on 0800 035 0701 for more information.