Booking a guaranteed room has its pluses and minuses. One plus (for us) has been a greatly reduced price for a much nicer room than we have taken in the past. Another potential plus was the possibility of getting some kind of an upgrade. I say potential because the only part that is ‘guaranteed’ is the minimum category of the room…not the location on the ship nor any kind of upgrade.
One minus we have read about often, at CruiseCritic.com, is finding out WHICH room we will be assigned to. There are a number of people who have mentioned a delay in receiving this information. Some have waited as long as just prior to actually boarding the ship. That can certainly be unsettling and we have been twiddling our thumbs, anxiously waiting for this tidbit as well.
Then came a phone call from our wonderful travel agent yesterday. Princess was offering us a step up to a Club Class mini-suite for a very nominal (we think) up-charge. The net cost to us is Still much less than our normal choice would have been. So, we accepted their offer. Ultimately the location of this particular mini-suite also has its own plus/minus situation. Plus side…right where we love to be. Mid-ship, 12 floors up, close to elevators. Possible minus, again as pointed out by many prior cruisers, on this ship our mini-suite is below a feature called the SeaWalk.
As outlined on Princess.com “A dramatic over-the-ocean glass walkway, the SeaWalk® is the first of its kind at sea. At 60 feet long, cantilevered 128 feet above the waves and extending 28 feet beyond the edge of the ship, it affords thrilling vistas of the ever-changing seascape. Just as the Captain can look through glass panels in the floor of the bridge, passengers can now share in that breathtaking experience. Across the ship, the SeaView Bar goes one step further with a glass paneled floor and drinks prepared during exciting shows with flair.”
Having experienced walking and beveraging on this walkway in the past, we know it is a unique experience. But another minus, again noted by many at CruiseCritic, people on the walkway can see down on to balconies below. Ours would be one of those, certainly, but if anyone wants to watch us sitting, reading and enjoying a libation (or two!), well…I don’t sit out there in the nude, so they’re welcome to watch. And we may even wave back. 🙂
Another point of contention, with rooms situated like ours, is the view from our balcony upwards. Where many would use their balcony to stargaze (and we have done our share of that as well), that particular vision is hampered, essentially blocked by the seawalk. How badly it affects us remains to be seen, but if it’s that much of an issue, the ship is big enough we can find another location to do that.
There are other pluses as well. A slightly bigger balcony, nightly canapes, nicer bed, nicer robes, exclusive dining area and wait staff – we might end up with nose-in-the-air syndrome.
Kidding aside and minuses accepted, this whole upgrade package (for the price) is unlikely to come our way again. Much like our business class upgrade on our return flight from Japan (last year)…this is just too nice to pass up. Calamity can strike at any time so why not?
Some people may think we’re too laid back, that we don’t appear to care enough about some things that should make the whole journey nicer. I’ve had two heart attacks and a quintuple by-pass. I refuse to sweat the small stuff any more. Having to wait until August 27 (when we finally take off)…THAT is a much bigger thing to me. 🙂