I was fortunate to travel on two luxury river cruises this month and last, Uniworld’s S.S. Maria Theresa and Scenic Jasper. You can read the full reports from my voyages at the links at the bottom of this post. Before I send you trotting off to learn more about these trips, however, I thought it would be interesting to show you two videos of the two open-air balcony concepts on each vessel. They each work the same essentially, with windows that raise and lower to expose the rooms to fresh air and unobstructed views (which can be breath-taking given the landscapes that these vessels pass).
The key differences for me were that Uniworld’s S.S. Maria Theresa featured an additional mosquito net, a nice touch so that you can enjoy the balcony without the bugs, although I have not noticed a pervasive bug problem on the rivers in Europe. Scenic Jasper, on the other hand, featured folding glass doors that separate the balcony and bedroom. The folding glass doors can be “shoved” out of the way when not in use. By contrast, S.S. Maria Theresa featured fixed sliding glass doors.
Uniworld calls its concept Open-Air Balconies while Scenic refers to its concept as Sun Lounges. Both are great additions to staterooms for those who want to breathe in Europe and enjoy the landscape from the comfort of their staterooms.
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Uniworld’s S.S. Maria Theresa: Open-Air Balconies
Scenic Jasper: Sun Lounge
Scenic Jasper Voyage, April 14-21
- Scenic Jasper: Boarding In Budapest
- Scenic Jasper: A Comprehensive Look At Suites & Staterooms
- Scenic Jasper: Durnstein To Melk By Bike
- Scenic Jasper: Excursions From Linz & A Dinner To Remember
- Scenic Jasper: Viennese Waltz & One Last Ride
- Scenic Jasper: Vienna & Christening In Photos
S.S. Maria Theresa Voyage, May 8-17
- Uniworld’s Maria Theresa: Rail Strike, Would I Make It To The Ship?
- Uniworld’s Maria Theresa: Biking Bamberg, Making The Case For River Cruising As An Active Experience
- Uniworld’s Maria Theresa: Step Into Stateroom 425, Crossing Europe’s Continental Divide
- Uniworld’s Maria Theresa: Open-Air Balconies Make All The Difference
- Uniworld’s Maria Theresa: This Is River Cruising? Fine Dining On Uniworld
- Uniworld’s Maria Theresa: Cruising & Cycling The Wachau Valley