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Scenic Cruises

Australia-based Scenic operates luxury river cruises specializing in Europe, Russia and SE Asia with a fleet of "Space Ships," so named because they are longer than standard European river boats and have a higher-than-normal space ratio.

More than 80% of cabins have "Sun Lounge" convertible balconies, which are unique to Scenic. When the weather is poor, guests can press a button and a hidden glass panel rises up to create a fully-enclosed all-weather room extension. All accommodations have luxury bedding (and a pillow menu), WiFi, flat-screen high-definition television (hooked up to a MiniMac computer, for in-room surfing), Infotainment entertainment system, complimentary mini-bars, bathrobes and slippers, L'Occitane products and larger-than average bathrooms with walk-in showers.

Twenty-five percent of the Balcony Suites are Deluxe Balcony Suites, with 225 square feet of space. Onboard facilities include a 24-hour fitness center, a walking track, gift shop, three outdoor viewing areas and a larger-than-average lounge and dining area.

There are two restaurants: the main dining room and the (Italian) alternative restaurant, Portobello's, which requires reservations. Other options: Table la Rive, a six-course tasting menu served with wine pairing and the River Cafe, which serves light food all day long, and 24/7 room service.

The technology aboard Scenic boats reduces vibrations, which makes for a quieter passenger experience. Scenic's "Tailormade" GPS system offers audio information not only during shore tours, but also on sites traveled along the river.

Scenic Space-Ships are purpose built. For instance, the Scenic Gem (the Tsar is not a Space Ship), is capable of navigating areas along the Seine that are not accessible to bigger boats; passenger can then disembark directly to such appealing ports as Honfleur in France.

Scenic's cruise fares include meals (including theme dinners), unlimited drinks (including those in the cabin mini-bars), shore excursions, concerts and performances, gratuities and butler service (in Europe), transfers and use of electric-assist bicycles (as well as the regular type).

Guests have the ability to customize their experiences through the Scenic Enrich, Scenic FreeChoice and Scenic Tailormade programs at no additional cost.

As you might expect on a luxury cruise, the passengers are fairly affluent, well-traveled, 50+ , most of whom are English speakers (North Americans, Europeans and Australians).

Scenic is best for:

Well-traveled, mature adults who seek a luxury river cruise that is entirely inclusive. Those seeking the finest river experience and not concerned about price.


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