Just outside the heavy cabin door is a members-only retreat. Your balcony, that is, a private 35- to 1,000-square-foot space for watching sea spume float by and spying on your neighbors -- but also cracking open a lobster tail, ogling high divers flip and twist into a pool 60 feet below and hosting a cocktail party for two or 20.
Thanks to public clamor, today's new ships include an ever-increasing ratio of balconies, making the once premium-priced accommodations accessible to the masses.
Of course, you can always splurge on a suite, which can transform the standard two-chair-and-a-table setup into a sanctuary with thickly padded chaise loungers, a hot tub and a wet bar. But a 10-by-5-foot swath of treated wood is plenty big for most pursuits.