The rare cruise ship cabins that everyone wants to book immediately

02 Aug 2023
Matt Hochberg

Cruise ship cabins usually fall into four main categories, but some ships feature unique variations that set them apart from the standard options.

Family Oceanview Cabin on Oasis of the Seas

While most balcony and inside cabins share similar designs, certain ships offer exclusive cabin layouts tailored to fit the ship's specific design. These distinctive cabins have gained popularity among frequent cruisers due to their extra space, special perks, or unique benefits not typically found in standard rooms.

These extraordinary cabin layouts have become sort of a hidden gem, known only to insiders, and they tend to sell out quickly. It's akin to a "secret menu" at a restaurant that attracts those in the know.

AquaTheater Suite w/Balcony

Whether you're interested in booking one of these cabins for yourself or simply curious about their offerings, let's explore a few rare cruise ship cabins that stand out from the rest and are in high demand.

Sky Junior Suite

Sky Junior Suite

As soon as Royal Caribbean announced an upgraded Junior Suite with better suite perks, it got a lot of attention.

Located in Suite Neighborhood on Icon of the Seas, this is the first Junior Suite that has Sky Class benefits.

Sky Junior Suite benefits include Suite Neighborhood access, all-day dining at two suites-only restaurants, free wifi, and concierge service.

Sky Junior Suites are only available on Icon Class cruise ships, and there are only 8 of them on each ship.

Ultimate Family Suite

Ultimate Family Townhouse

Believe it or not, there is a huge amount of demand for one of Royal Caribbean's most expensive suites.

As an example, the Ultimate Family Townhouse on Icon of the Seas is going for an average price of $80,000 and it's completely sold out of every sailing in 2024.

Ultimate Family Townhouse

This cabin is a 1,772-square-foot mega suite that will be three decks high and sleep up to eight people. There's just one on Icon of the Seas.

It features an in-suite slide, movie-viewing room, karaoke machine and a "backyard" with a ping pong table, outdoor seating and a white picket fence leading directly to the Surfside area.

It's super expensive and super in-demand.

Solo cabins

Studio on Anthem

On some Royal Caribbean cruise ships, there are a few staterooms meant for someone traveling by themselves.

These studio staterooms are smaller than a traditional cabin, but they have just enough space for one person. Best yet, they do not get charged the single supplement fee.

The single supplement fee is traditionally charged to someone booking a cruise alone, because cabin pricing is based on double occupancy,

Studio cabin on Harmony

When Royal Caribbean added these rooms, they designed them to be respective of the ship's business model and this means solo cruisers do not have to pay double the cost of what the cruise should be.

Depending on the ship, there could be as few as two studio rooms, or as much as a dozen.

You can view a list of which ships have studio cabins and if you want one, book it early.

Hump balconies

Radiance of the Seas

Most balcony cabins across the fleet look the same, but you might be able to get a larger balcony if your room is positioned perfectly.

The so-called "hump" balcony cabins are the rooms on the outwards part of the curvy outline of the ship.  If you look at a deck plan, you'll notice around mid-ship, the hull design jets outward. 

Hump room

On many ships, balcony cabins in these areas are significantly larger than other balcony cabins.  And usually the price is the same.

You'll find hump balcony rooms with massive balconies on Radiance Class, Voyager, Freedom, Oasis or Quantum, but look closely at the deck plan to see which balconies are larger.

Aft balconies

Similar to the aforementioned hump balcony rooms, some ships have rather large balcony rooms on the back of the ship.

There are aft balcony rooms on every Royal Caribbean ship, but some of the rear-facing cabins on Vision Class, Radiance Class, and Freedom Class cruise ships have very large balcony space.

Aft balcony room

This means you not only get an interesting vantage point to enjoy, but much more living space outdoors.

People that cruise a lot will book up the aft balcony cabins on an Alaska cruise for the viewing opportunities.

Four Bedroom Family Suite

4 bedroom suite Room #12640

If you have a big family, you might be eyeing one of the biggest suites available on any Royal Caribbean ship.

This is one of the best kept secrets within the Royal Caribbean fleet, because you can get 4 separate bedrooms and 5 different sleeping areas. And it comes with the Star Class benefits, such as a Royal Genie.

4 bedroom suite

The Four Bedroom Family Suite is available on Symphony, Harmony, and Liberty of the Seas, formerly known as the Presidential Suite on some ships. 

Surprisingly, some cruisers have found that off-season sailings, combined with certain sales and promotions, can make the Villa Suite pretty affordable. Some have found the sailings for as little as $1,000 per person, which is extremely affordable for a Star Class Royal Suite.

Extra large Central Park Balcony rooms

Ever since I learned about the handful of Central Park balcony rooms on Oasis Class ships, I always look to book these first.

There are two Central Park balcony rooms on each deck that have almost double width balconies for the same cost as other Central Park balcony staterooms.

Extra large central park room

The cabin numbers are on decks 10, 11 and 12:

  • 10229
  • 10629
  • 11229
  • 11629
  • 12229
  • 12629

Why do these rooms have extra space? There's no actual cabin next door because the area is used by Royal Caribbean for something else.

Having that extra balcony space is a very nice benefit during your sailing.

Family cabins

If you have two or three kids with you, it could be a great idea to try out one of the family oceanview and family inside cabins available on select ships.

While these cabins don't have a balcony, they do offer a ton of living space.

Family oceanview on Brilliance

First and foremost, these cabins offer a bedroom for the parents, and either an additional bedroom for the kids, or a nook with bunk beds for the kids.

There's also two bathrooms, which can be a godsend for parents sailing with older kids.

Kids room bunk bed

These cabins are typically located at the very front or very rear of the ship and offer a ton of living space, meant to be shared by families of 4 or more guests. 

Family rooms are cheaper than a suite and in many cases offers more space.

Matt started Royal Caribbean Blog in 2010 as a place to share his passion for all things Royal Caribbean with readers. He oversees all the writers at Royal Caribbean Blog, and writes a great deal of content on a daily basis.  He has become one of the foremost experts on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

Over the years, he has reached Pinnacle Club status with Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

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