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S.S. Beatrice Cabins

Editor Rating
Louise Goldsbury

Every inch of accommodation was overhauled in the 2018 refit to create some of the finest staterooms on the rivers. Unlike other vessels, the decor is not the same in every cabin. Far from neutral, Beatrice is not afraid of color, patterns and valuable art. Blue, gold and white are common palettes, with matching silk wallpaper and duvets. Standard rooms are compact yet comfortable, while the suites are noticeably more spacious and opulent. Another Owner's Suite and two Grand Suites have been added, while four cabins were reconfigured into two family rooms with a door in between them.

All rooms have new, handmade Savoir beds, which are snug and cushy, with soft, padded mattresses, European duvets, plush pillows and Egyptian cotton linens. A pillow menu allows alternative choices such as neck support or memory foam. The bed has a pull-out drawer and enough space underneath for suitcases. There is more storage in bedside tables, a wide dresser, wardrobe and safe.

Filtered water and jars of chocolates and cookies are replenished daily. A sumptuous bathrobe and slippers, as well as an umbrella, are provided for use throughout your cruise. Individually controlled thermostats allow passengers to manage the warmth or coolness or switch off the air conditioning.

Creating a sense of more space, one wall is all mirrors, which also encases the flat-screen television. The television is loaded with free movies, 40 satellite channels (such as CNN, BBC, MTV, Eurosport), radio stations, ship information, your onboard account and Bluetooth connectivity so you can connect your device to play your own music. The water-facing wall has a French balcony (sliding floor-to-ceiling windows) or a picture window, depending on the cabin category. None of the rooms or suites have walkout balconies.

White marble bathrooms are stocked with Asprey-branded soap, shampoo, body lotion and shower gel. You'll also find a hair dryer, magnifying mirror and vanity set containing shower cap, cotton pads, cotton tips, emery board and sewing kit. Ample storage is provided on shelves and the vanity and its two deep drawers. All rooms have a walk-in shower; four of the top suites also have freestanding baths. The water pressure is good and adjustable; we found the temperature fluctuated slightly while we showered.

Classic: Categories 4 and 5 on Deck 2 are the entry-level cabins, measuring 150 square feet (14 square meters) with standard windows.

French Balcony: Also 150 square feet, these rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows that slide open. Deluxe (Category 1) is located on the convenient and highest Deck 4, while Category 2 and 3 cabins are on Decks 2 and 3. The dresser incorporates a desk or dressing table with a stool, and there is a freestanding small table and chair.

Family/Interconnecting: There are two new sets of connecting rooms for families, which could also be booked by two couples of groups of friends wanting to stay next to each other. These are the same size as standard staterooms but simply have an internal door in between two cabins. The door can be closed for privacy or opened to create a flowing space.

Junior Suite: For more space around the bed, butler service, a free mini-bar, fresh fruit plus coffee machine, these 12 bigger suites are recommended. At 225 square feet (21 square meters), the extra area allows a second wardrobe, a small table and two chairs, and another window as well as the French balcony. It is one large room, as opposed to two separated rooms of the higher category suites. The bathrooms are a little bigger and the upgraded brand of toiletries is Hermes.

The mini-bar is stocked and replenished daily with complimentary miniatures of spirits, Baileys, beer, sodas and juices. Two bottles of red wine (French and South African) and three decanters full of vodka, scotch and brandy are also housed in the cabinet so you can make your own drinks in the lovely crystal glasses to enjoy privately in your suite.

The butlers are apparently trained to the same standards of excellence required by Buckingham Palace. Although they were very well presented and gracious, we could not find a lot for them to do except pick up our complimentary laundry and pressing, which was a wonderful perk. They didn't offer to unpack our luggage, not that we would have accepted. Butlers are contacted by calling the front desk.

Grand Suite: A new category, these two top-end suites span 310 square feet each (28.8 square meters). In addition to the amenities provided in the Junior Suites, a Grand Suite has a living area with double sofa, coffee table and second television that unfolds from the ceiling. The bedroom is separate from the living room. The larger bathroom has a bigger vanity with two basins, a rain shower and a bathtub, plus a secluded toilet area offering river views out the window (frosted glass from ground to shoulder level, clear from eye level and up, with a pull-down blind).

Owner's/Royal Suite: The most prized accommodation, the two largest suites stretch to 390 square feet (36.2 square metres). Closest to the lounge and dining areas on Deck 4, they have the same amenities as a Grand Suite but bigger, separate rooms and the most decadent decor.

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