We are admittedly HAL fans having cruised on several other lines and found them lacking. But this review, really, is about cruising in a deluxe veranda suite. The room category can affect one's attitude and experience of a cruise. But most often the reviews are written about standard rooms or veranda rooms. When planning our cruises neither my wife nor I remember reading reviews these last few years from those who booked suites. So let me discuss the cruise from this vantage point: the guest who books the deluxe veranda suite.
Of course the room is very large (510sq ft) with a king bed, extended balcony with table and four chairs and two lounges. There is a dressing room/makeup room, bath with both tub/shower and stall shower, jacuzzi in tub. A bar, large couch, sitting chairs round out the accommodations.
Suite perks include use of the Neptune Lounge which is a private club for these guests. There are two concierges so one never has to go to the main ship office. One can book tours, order reservations, purchase or exchange currency or manage just about anything which happens during the course of the cruise right in the Neptune. There is a constant and ever changing supply of food in the lounge; many people take their breakfasts in there or in the Pinnacle Grill (another perk). There is a ground per order cappucino machine, coffee, tea, juices, fruit...a mini library, couches and so on. Laundry and shoe shining is complimentary as are special suite luncheon and suite dinner parties. Another useful perk is tender service priority. Suite guest don't need tender tickets to leave the ship but simply go down to the tender and are put on as soon as possible.
Yes, these and other perks cost extra. Perhaps a lot extra, but the cost of a deluxe suite on HAL is still much less than sailing on Crystal or Seaborne, Celebrity or the other prime liners. In my mind, HAL is a good value for the upscale traveler. We have sailed HAL in an outside double with window, deluxe veranda (double with balcony) and four times in the suites. The suites make a real difference.