Royal Caribbean unveils new perks for passengers in suites


Even as Royal Caribbean cuts back on service for passengers staying in standard cabins, it’s upgrading its offerings for those staying in suites.

The mass-market line today unveiled a laundry list of new perks for suite passengers that range from access to priority security lines at embarkation to complimentary laundry pressing on formal nights.

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Notably, the new perks include complimentary 24-hour room service — a once-standard amenity on Royal Caribbean ships that was recently eliminated across the fleet. While Royal Caribbean still offers complimentary room service to all cabins during the day, the line began charging a delivery fee in January for late-night room service to standard cabins — a move that was criticized by many longtime Royal Caribbean fans.

Among other perks for passengers in suites unveiled today:

— Priority check-in. Passengers booked in the Presidential Family, Royal, Royal Family, Owner’s and Grand suites will have access to dedicated security (where available) and check-in lines to help speed them onboard. Passengers booked in the top-tier Royal and Presidential Family suites will be personally welcomed by a senior officer at the cruise terminal and escorted onboard.

— Elite keycards. Passengers in Grand Suites or higher category cabins will receive distinctive gold SeaPass cards that will tip off crew to their elite status.

— Upgraded cabin amenities. Suites will come with complimentary slippers, luxury spa bathrobes, exclusive Vitality bathroom toiletries, Ghirardelli chocolates at turndown, plush duvets and a special pillow menu.

— Extra nibbles. On the first formal evening of a cruise suite passengers will receive a pre-dinner cheese presentation, and on the second formal or final evening of the cruise, a ‘petits fours’ plate during turndown service.

— Upgraded room service. In addition to complimentary 24-hour room service, passengers in suites will receive coffee and tea service throughout their cruise and have exclusive privilege to order from the main dining room’s full breakfast, lunch or dinner menus for in-room dining.

— VIP access. Passengers booked in the Grand Suite and higher category cabins will receive an invitation to a private cocktail reception hosted by the Captain of their ship. They’ll also be entitled to reserved VIP seating for shows in the main theater, priority bookings in the salon and spa, and priority access for tendering and shore excursion tickets.

— VIP poolside seating. On Voyager- and Freedom-class ships, suite passengers will have reserved VIP seating poolside as well as at the ice shows in the Studio B venue.

— Concierge Club access. On Radiance-, Voyager- and Freedom-class ships, suite passengers will receive a personal key to the private Concierge Club (staffed by a concierge who can make reservations for specialty restaurants, shore excursiosn, spa treatments and more).

— Priority disembarkation and luggage service. Passengers will be able to leave the ship quickly through a priority departure and will receive complimentary valet luggage service (where their bags are automatically transferred to the airport).

As part of the new suites program, Royal Caribbean also is upgrading furnishings in all suites. The installation of new plush sofa-beds, deckchairs and tables, and state-of-the-art entertainment systems with flat-panel televisions and CD/DVD players will be completed by 2010.