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Sapphire Princess - What is a good balcony/mini suite to Alaska


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Planning on a May 2009 cruise/land tour to Alaska via the Sapphire Princess for our 25th Anniversary. I would like to see what others thought are the best balconies or mini-suites on this ship. I read that E731 is awesome. Please help - I would like to book today...

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You should probably decide what general location you want; midships, aft, forward or full aft. Then whether you want a mini or a balcony and the differences between those two room types. A covered balcony being one of those differences in most cases.


Starboard is usually preferred for northbound trips, port for southbound, as they face the land side, although many times there is land on both sides.


E731 is the last mini towards the aft (but still on the side) on the starboard side, with a covered balcony. It does have an extended balcony and is quite large, about half again as much as a regular mini. It (and E728)usually are booked very shortly after bookings open up as they are so popular. As are all the E deck minis with covered balconies. Also popular are the aft balcony rooms.


Caribe deck balconies are a larger size, but there a many of these so you have a greater shot at them.

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Thank you for your advice! I don't know what is the best spot to be on the ship - mid, front, back. It is all so confusing. I do know that I want a covered balcony. I am thinking of a balcony vs. mini suite though.

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Most mini-suites do not have a covered balcony, only those on Emerald, just 12 of those on the ship. Caribe is half covered, but twice as large (meaning the covered portion is about the same as the fully covered balconies on the other decks). You would have to tell us why you want the covered balcony; most of them are not all that private, even if covered. If for weather, that would be a little different than for privacy.


Midships and lower generally has less movement, but on an Alaska cruise this is not as important as on other itineraries. The other reasons are to be closer to specific areas of the ship that you plan on using or to be away from noisier public areas.

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following refers to 'side' balconies only, i.e. those on starboard or port sides of any ‘Grand’ class ship (Grand, Golden, Star, Diamond, Sapphire, Caribbean, Crown, Emerald etc)....


Baja deck balconies are sized 9 ft. wide x 5 ft. deep and have full ceiling overhang. Lido, Aloha, Riviera (found on Caribbean, Crown, Emerald, Ruby only) decks have the same balconies. You can stand at the railing of these balconies and look down on to part of the Caribe deck balconies and all of the Dolphin deck balconies.


Caribe deck balconies are sized 9 ft. wide x 9 ft. deep and have ceiling overhang over the first 5 ft. Standing at the railing, you will overlook Dolphin deck balconies below.


All of the cabin interiors/bathrooms of the balcony cabins are the same with respect to size (unless it is a handicapped cabin).

Dolphin deck balconies (all balcony cabins are actually mini-suites and thus bigger than regular balcony cabins on the interior with sitting area, 2nd TV and bathtub/shower combination instead of the small shower stall found in the regular balcony cabins). The balcony is sized 9 ft. wide x 7 ft. deep and has no ceiling overhang as protection from sun or rain.


Emerald deck has several mini-suites each side with fully covered balconies. The last mini-suite cabin towards aft end on each side has extra wide balcony – approximately 7 ft. deep x 18 wide, according to someone who stayed in one of these. Emerald deck also has some regular balcony cabins near the front that have the balconies set back under the roof and back from the railing. You look straight out to the water but cannot look down on the water. The walking track goes past these balconies and walkers can see you on your balcony. I do not have any measurements for these Emerald deck balcony sizes.

Hope this helps. Enjoy your cruise!

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