Scenic Cruises has officially launched two of its five ‘Space-Ships’ that spent the winter being nearly completely rebuilt. The revamped Scenic Diamond and Scenic Sapphire have officially welcomed their first guests of the season, earning rave reviews for the changes that took place over the course of the last few months. Because his company remains committed to maintaining the highest level of guest experience, owner Glen Moroney opted to spend $10 million to update five of Scenic’s existing Space-Ships to match the specifications of its two newest ships, Scenic Crystal, which debuted in April 2012, and Scenic Jewel, which will launch later this month. Interestingly, these “older” ships – Scenic Diamond, Scenic Emerald*, Scenic Pearl, Scenic Ruby and Scenic Sapphire – range in age from only 18 months to four years, so they were already prime examples of top design among luxury ships traveling the Main, Rhine, Moselle and Danube waterways in Europe.
A near complete rebuild means that all that remains of the original ships are walls, ceilings and the ship base. All suites* have a luxurious new look, featuring fresh wallpaper, plus new marble desktops, furniture, soft goods and carpets. In addition, the signature Scenic ‘Sun-Lounge’ has been refitted to these ships, allowing guests to convert their private full-size balcony into an all-weather lounge with just the push of a button. Each cabin boasts a 32-inch Samsung high-definition television that’s linked to a MiniMac computer, providing easy access to in-cabin internet and e-mail capabilities thanks to an upgraded Wi-Fi system that uses both satellite and UMTS mobile technology for faster speeds.
Improved dining experiences include the addition of the casual River Café* for relaxed meals; the introduction of the intimate Table La Rive*, which boasts a degustation menu; and a redesign of the existing Portobellos Restaurant. The Bar now shines with Port Laurent black Moroccan marble, and additional coffee machines and Eurocave wine dispensers have been added. Another key public area, Reception, boasts new floors, desks, designer Bolon wallpaper, light fixtures and artwork from Scenic’s home country of Australia.
Besides showcasing European river cruising’s most deluxe ships, Scenic is committed to the concept of “fully inclusive,” ensuring that all guests can enjoy private butter service; unlimited complimentary beverages; 24-hour room service; new themed dinners with entertainment; Scenic’s new exclusive “Tailormade” system – a personal handheld GPS unit that includes full audio commentary about dozens of sites along the river as the ship passes as well as during walking and cycling tours; and complimentary WiFi. The fares also include all excursions, gratuities onboard and ashore, airport transfers and more. Guests only have to pay for souvenirs and personal items they may need – nothing else.