by Roy Witman © 2006
When you hear the words “spacious cabin,” most people don’t imagine a 5,750 square-foot suite. But Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) did! Beginning with the Norwegian Dawn in 2002, NCL began creating Garden Villas aboard their most luxurious ships. Today, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Garden Villas still offer the largest accommodations at sea.
The primary goals of the Garden Villas are to offer guests privacy, luxury and pampering at every turn. Five butlers staff these suites in order to ensure every need is anticipated and met even before guests make requests. Guests have the direct phone numbers for the suite staff in order to call upon them night or day. Want your luggage packed or unpacked? Absolutely! Need help planning and hosting a party? But of course! Hoping to receive VIP tickets to events or private excursions? The butlers are there to make it happen.
The Garden Villas include a master bedroom and two additional bedrooms, each with a private, luxury bathroom. Guests also have a whirlpool tub; large, plush beds with premium bedding and a dining area. The outside, multi-tiered sundeck features a Jacuzzi as well as luxurious deck furniture and ample space for entertaining up to 100 guests. Garden Villas also treat guests to multiple private balconies.
High atop Deck 14, the views are simply unmatched. Elegantly decorated, the Garden Villas offer a spacious living room with a panoramic ocean view, courtesy of floor-to-ceiling windows. In fact, panoramic views are featured throughout the suite, in every room from the master bedroom to the bathroom.
Awake to the sunrise dancing across the waves as you enjoy a made-to-order breakfast served at the time of your choosing. Then, at night, watch the lights glisten off the water right outside your bedroom, as you’re lulled to sleep by the rhythm of the sea. You’re even likely to spot dolphins playing in the ship’s wake or a massive whale as it crashes through the waves.
At $25,000 per week, you might assume these premium suites go uninhabited much of the time. Quite the contrary is true. As one of the most popular suites in the fleet, the Garden Villas are almost always filled on each voyage.
Families, family reunions, groups of friends, multiple families traveling together and those who simply want the best accommodations available have been known for occupying the Garden Villas.
The addition of Garden Villas aboard Star (2001, later retrofit with Garden Villas) and Jewel (2005) means there are only six of these suites in the entire NCL fleet. That puts them in even higher demand.
If you want the most luxurious accommodations available, cruise critics agree that Norwegian’s Garden Villas are your best option.