Zhao Shang Yi Dun (Viking Sun) Cabins

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Editor Rating
Carolyn Spencer Brown

On Viking Sun, as on all its fleetmates, all staterooms have balconies. There are, essentially, just a handful of cabin categories, which helps streamline the stateroom shopping process. And, while most of the decor details are absolutely identical to those on other ships -- including soft, nautical colors with simple Scandinavian-style furnishings -- Viking Sun does offer a few new twists. As it's the only ship in Viking Ocean's fleet to feature lengthy world cruises, the line created additional hanging racks in standard stateroom closets. As well, the bathrooms in standard veranda cabins now have heated tile floors that are available in all other categories.

All cabins feature king-sized beds that can be divided into twins. Staterooms have bedside tables with built-in lights, and USB and power outlets for charging devices. There's a safe, hair dryer, umbrella, bathrobes and slippers.

The 42-inch flat-screen LCD television found in every room is connected to a superb interactive system that offers movies on demand (with a particularly good selection of classics and flicks set in regions in which the ship cruises) and enrichment programming, such as TED Talks. You can also make reservations for restaurants, spa and shore excursions via your television.

Bathrooms in all cabin categories are spacious, featuring heated tile floors, anti-fog mirrors and plenty of built-in storage. Toiletries provided are the no-scent Freya, a Norwegian brand, and they come in large sizes with simple, easy-to-read lettering.

In-cabin perks also increase with the size and price of stateroom booked; higher-category cabins receive earlier embarkation, priority restaurant and spa reservations, and expanded mini-bar contents. (Pricier cabins have alcoholic beverages in addition to soft drinks.)

Veranda and Deluxe Veranda: Largely identical, the big difference between these 270-square-foot staterooms is in perks, such as pre-cruise reservations and access to the cabin on embarkation day. Also, deluxe veranda cabins have a few extra amenities, such as an in-cabin coffee maker. Otherwise, all feature a small seating area that's furnished with a pair of armchairs and a coffee table. The balcony has two mesh chairs and a table high enough to dine on. The shower-only bathroom has one sink.

Penthouse Veranda: Measuring 338 square feet, these staterooms feature all the furnishings and amenities of the deluxe veranda with some extras. The extra space is particularly notable in the seating area, which has a couch and an armchair. The cabin and stateroom are both slightly wider, with a window in addition to the balcony door. Other distinctions: Mini-bars are stocked with alcoholic beverages in addition to soft drinks, and there's a welcome bottle of Champagne. Complimentary shoeshine and pressing are other perks. Priority reservations get a jump on those in the veranda category, and passengers get two guaranteed reservations each at the ship's pair of alternative restaurants.

Penthouse Junior Suite: Typically called a mini-suite on other cruise lines, this 405-square-foot suite combines living and sleeping areas in one spacious room. We love the addition of a beautiful, streamlined and extremely useful credenza, which offers additional storage. Bathrooms have dual sinks and a towel warmer. The living area, with a sofa and two chairs, can be separated off from the bedroom by a curtain. Additional perks include priority cabin access on embarkation day, free laundry service, pressing and dry cleaning, and three guaranteed reservations at each of the ship's two alternative restaurants. Viking Sun's only two wheelchair-accessible cabins are in this category.

Explorer Suite: Viking Sun's Explorer Suites offer separate living and sleeping areas, with expansive bathrooms and a walk-in closet. Positioned only at the very front and very rear of the ship, these suites range in interior and balcony size. (The smallest start at 757 square feet.) On forward-facing suites, balconies include dining tables and cushy padded lounge chairs along with a dining table that seats four. The veranda faces out to the side of the ship (with a glassed-in panel on the front). Aft-facing balconies truly wrap around the ship, featuring a daybed, as well as a pair of loungers and a dining table for four. These balconies are larger than the ones attached to the forward-facing Explorer Suites. Otherwise, the suites are reasonably similar. The living room has two loveseats and easy chairs, and flows into a dining space that has a table for four. The bedroom is cozy and compact. Where these cabins shine is in the walk-in closets and bathrooms with separate showers and bathtubs. (The Explorer Suites are the only accommodations to have bathtubs.)

Owner's Suite: Viking Sun, like its fleetmates, has just one Owner's Suite, and it's magnificent. Bigger than many New York apartments, the 1,488-square-foot accommodation features a living room/dining room combination, walk-in closet, wine rack, mini-kitchen, powder room, bedroom, shower-only bathroom, Finnish sauna and the ship's most sprawling balcony. Plus, it's attached to a private boardroom/event space that can seat 12 around a massive table (and has all the electronic gadgets for those staying in touch with the office). Its decor is inspired by the tastes of Viking's Norwegian owner, Torstein Hagen, and the suite is filled with books, music and even family photos from the Hagen family collection.

Specifically, the living room is outfitted with two couches and two easy chairs. The adjacent dining room, with its eye-catching wine wall (bottles are available to passengers in the suite), has a dining table that seats six. The master bedroom is connected to a walk-in closet and also to the master bath, with its oversized walk-in shower, double-sink vanity and anti-fog mirrors. From the bathroom, you can walk out onto the balcony, where a dry sauna is located.

There's also two balcony areas. One has the full complement of furnishings, including a dining table and four comfortably padded loungers. Through a door off the living room is the boardroom, which has a lovely seating nook that's tucked into a picture window, along with the expansive table. There's another powder room located here.

There's also a balcony off the bathroom, and the sauna is located here, along with bench seating.

Residents of the Owner's Suite get the biggest basket of perks. In addition to all of those allotted to passengers in Explorer Suites, there's an upgraded bottle of Champagne (Veuve Clicquot), complimentary shore excursion with private car and driver, daily tea or pre-dinner cocktails and canapes, and a dinner and guided tour with the ship's officers. Another fabulous and exclusive perk: In addition to guaranteed reservations at Manfredi's and Chef's Table, passengers can also order in-cabin service from any menu during restaurant opening hours.

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