Colleen McDaniel
Cruise Critic Editor-In-Chief
5.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating: Cabins

Emerald has 49 cabins spanning three passenger decks, and all cabins are comfortably designed yet still maintain the ship's sophisticated vibe, with sleek marble and dark wood details throughout. Staterooms are decorated in shades of blue, with soft linens, plush pillows and pops of gold. Prints of paintings by artists like van Gogh and Monet adorn the walls.

Cabins have room-darkening blackout curtains, queen or European king-sized beds (with twin-bed configurations available), 400-threadcount linens, sumptuous pillow-top mattresses and down duvets. Refrigerators in each cabin are stocked with water and soft drinks that are replenished daily. Cabins also have safes, telephones, closets with built-in drawers and bedside tables, allowing for ample storage. Flat-screen TVs offer a variety of programming, with news channels like CNN International, BBC, Bloomberg and CNBC as well as EuroSport. Movies are available on-demand, and they mostly reflect the region to which the ship is sailing. For example, a Rhone River sailing might have movie selections like "Amelie" or "The Da Vinci Code." Each passenger gets a terry cloth robe to wear while onboard as well as a pair of slippers. Umbrellas are provided for use while sailing. Cabins also have multiple outlets -- both U.S. and European -- and USB ports; we loved that we could charge our devices bedside overnight. Wall-mounted reading lamps are located on each side of the beds. Cabins also have Quietvox devices and chargers, which are used during most shore excursions.

Bathrooms include showers, vessel sinks, toilets and large mirrors -- which open to additional storage space and a makeup mirror. No cabins have bathtubs. Toiletries are from British company Molton Brown and include hand and bath soap, shampoo, conditioner, bath gel and lotion. These are restocked as needed. A high-wattage hair dryer is included in each cabin.

Cabins are designed to be eco-friendly. Power to the cabin is controlled by inserting a keycard into a slot. This allows passengers to control lights. While the system is designed to work with your cabin keycard, any flat card will suffice (we used our library card). Worth noting: Outlets and USB ports still worked even when we weren't powering the room with a card, so we could charge devices like our camera batteries and cellphones without being in the cabin. Likewise, individual climate controls will continue to run even when the card isn't in place, but they won't work when French balconies are open. Cabin stewards also will skip changing out towels that aren't left on the floor as another way to help the environment.

Emerald doesn't have cabins created specifically for passengers with disabilities. The ship has two sets of adjoining cabins, which can work for families.

Riverview: All cabins on the first deck have two high, small windows that allow in some natural light and provide limited views while sailing. (They have this window arrangement because much of the cabin actually sits below water level.) Eight cabins on Deck 1 are 150 square feet. These cabins are most popular with solo travelers, though they are designed to accommodate two people. Cabins include two cushioned chairs and a small table. Showers are essentially glass-encased tubes with plenty of room; showerheads are adjustable so they can accommodate even the tallest of passengers. Deck 1 also has one 182-square-foot cabin, which is located in a corner of the deck and thus positions the bed at an angle facing toward the windows. Because of the smaller space, these cabins don't automatically come with coffeemakers, but passengers can request to have a Nespresso machine in their stateroom if they'd like one.

French Balcony: Cabins on Deck 2 and above come with the addition of a sliding floor-to-ceiling door that opens to a French balcony. Twenty of the cabins are 225 square feet, while four (two on Deck 2 and two on Deck 3) are 183 square feet and are arranged so that beds are angled toward the balconies. Two more, both located on Deck 3, are 150 square feet and laid out similarly to the Riverview cabins. The biggest cabins at this level have the beds arranged so they face the door, and they also include a larger shower, which has a fold-down seat, large shelf and two showerheads -- one standard and a rainfall showerhead. Each also includes two chairs and a desk. Nespresso machines are included from French balcony cabins on up.

Suite: The largest cabins on Emerald all are located on Deck 3. At 300 square feet, these 14 cabins are among the more spacious in the industry. Smartly laid out, each cabin includes two sets of floor-to-ceiling French balconies, a bed positioned to face the windows and a small seating area that includes a convertible sofa that sleeps two children, large granite-topped table, small cushioned bench, dresser with three drawers and a shelving unit. Cabins also include walk-in closets, which have another set of drawers and ample space to hang clothing. In the closet, you'll find an ironing board and iron -- a rarity in cruising. This is the only cabin category that has adjoining cabins -- the ship has two sets -- which connect through the closets. Suite passengers can order a full room-service breakfast.

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