Star Flyer Cabins
- Pro: The thrill of sailing on a beautiful masted clipper ship
- Con: Small cabins
- Bottom line: A unique experience for active passengers seeking a cruise with a difference
Star Flyer Cabins
The ship features seven cabin grades, from the luxurious Owner's Cabin with whirlpool bath to inside cabins. The majority of standard staterooms are outside cabins, ranging from 97 to 150 square feet. A total of 79 out of 85 cabins on the ship have a small sea-facing porthole, or open onto the deck. The biggest distinguishing feature among categories is the location on the ship -- the higher the cabin category, the higher or more central it is located.
Cabins are decorated in nautical style -- navy blue and deep gold throw pillows, polished wood and brass fittings -- and with paintings of clipper ships on the walls.
Standard cabins feature two twin beds that can be pushed together into one double bed, a nightstand, desk with two shelves, a three-sectioned closet with both hanging and shelf space, TV (offering five channels, two of which are in English) and DVD player, telephone, hair dryer and a safe. A small stool under the desk and small banquette are more useful for storing extra belongings -- and the life jackets -- than for sitting. Look for the somewhat hard-to-find extra drawers under the nightstand and banquette, and a 110-volt outlet under the desk. Passengers are welcomed aboard with a tray of chocolates.
More so than on most cruises, the cabins are tight on maneuvering space, particularly if you separate the beds. Several cabins can sleep a third person in a bunk bed that folds down from the wall -- before you embrace this option, make sure you're all very good friends and good at keeping your things neat.
A refit in 2014 replaced all the bed linen and soft furnishings, adding features like backlit mirrors in the bathroom and LED bedside lights.
The small bathrooms have adequate storage space, mostly in the shelves behind the mirror. A basket holds shampoo, body wash, lotion, soap, a sewing kit and shower caps -- strangely, no conditioner. The wall-mounted power shower is located in one corner of the bathroom with just a flimsy curtain, but drains are ingeniously placed on either side of the room, as they would be on a proper yacht.
Interiors: The smallest cabins are the six inside cabins. The four Category Six cabins, measuring 97 square feet, are located midship on the lower Commodore Deck (Deck 1) and have pulldown-style bunk beds accommodating a maximum of two people. Two Category Five cabins measure 118 square feet with a twin/double bed configuration, and are situated forward on the Clipper Deck (Deck 2).
Oceanviews: These make up the majority of staterooms and are located on all four decks. Category Two and Category Three cabins are located on the Clipper Deck (Deck 2), and measure 129 and 118 square feet, respectively. Category Three and Category Four cabins are situated on the Commodore Deck (Deck 1) and measure 118 square feet.
The nicest cabins on the ship (in our opinion) are the eight Category One staterooms on the Main Deck and the aft Sun Deck. These have generally the same amenities as the standard outsides, but are much more spacious -- measuring 150 square feet -- with picture windows, a mini-bar and a larger bathroom with a whirlpool tub. The downside to these cabins is that windows open on to public thoroughfares rather than the sea. Cabins 532 and 533 open straight onto the aft plunge pool and so are ideal for anybody who enjoys an early morning dip.
Suites: The Owner's Suite, measuring 226 square feet is supposed to be the nicest cabin on the ship, but it only earns this designation if you're quite small. The cabin is located at the very aft end of the Clipper Deck (Deck 2), and so its aft wall is curved with multiple portholes. However, the ceiling is quite low. The bathroom does have a whirlpool tub, but no shower, and even with a hand-held shower attachment, you'd still have to be seated in the bath to wash your hair. So unless you're shorter than 5 feet 6 inches and really like baths, we'd recommend saving the splurge for the Category One cabins instead.
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