written by
Matthew Schroeder

While travelers certainly have an overwhelming choice of cruise lines and ships to choose from, few cruise experiences rival the pure elegance and comfort of the ship-within-a-ship concept.


Created nearly a decade ago and now available on board many ships across the globe, these privileged areas are akin to a boutique hotel with key-card-only accessible areas. In fact, many long-time cruisers will tell you that once you’ve experienced the intimacy and decadence of a ship-with-in-a-ship enclave, there’s no going back to traditional cabins.


These exclusive retreats are perfect for those celebrating romantic or milestone occasions, or for anyone just wanting extra privacy. By combining the luxury services and amenities traditionally found on small ships with the activities and entertainment offering on larger ships, discerning cruisers can truly have it all, including access to all other public areas of the ship like entertainment venues, restaurants, lounges, pools, and more.


Perfectly tailored for royalty, ship-within-a-ship havens feature only the most sought after cruise accommodations. These can range from expansive cabins and owner’s suites to courtyard penthouses and multi-bedroom villas, all complete with large balconies. Upscale interiors are highlighted by dramatic floor-to-ceiling windows that provide ever-changing seascape views. Glistening marble spans enormous bathrooms which include whirlpool tubs with equally amazing views. Pillow-top mattresses and fine linens help guests drift off into the most comfortable sleep at sea.


Along with their lavish accommodations, these extraordinary enclaves feature bespoke restaurants and dining options, sumptuous amenities, and intuitive services not available to other guests of the ship.


In addition to 24-hour professional butler service, ship-within-a-ship guests may have access to a dedicated Concierge service throughout your voyage and white tablecloth in-suite dining. Guests staying in these retreats may receive priority embarkation and disembarkation, a distinctive keycard, priority boarding of tenders to shore, and complimentary limousine service from the pier to the airport.


As a guest, you will have access to other V.I.P. areas of the ship. Step outside your residence and you'll enter a secluded space where you can spend your sea days in pure comfort. Your hideaway will likely have quiet places to dine and enjoy a cocktail or two, all while an expertly-trained staff intuitively attends to your every want, need, and whim. Additional peace-inducing areas offer an idea atmosphere for a swim in a private pool, resting on the sundeck, working out in the fitness center, and soaking tired muscles in a hot tub. Your Concierge can even help you plan your day whether it is hosting a party or reserving a private tour ashore.


Keep in mind that while the cruise planning process can vary between ships and cruise lines, you’ll likely discuss and pre-arrange all your cruise details (such as dining, entertainment, and spa requests) with pre-cruise concierge team. But rest assured that no matter where to cruise, from the moment you step into your ship-within-a-ship, you’ll experience the voyage of a lifetime.

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