Adam Coulter
Cruise Critic UK Managing Editor
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating: Cabins

Spitsbergen has 102 cabins (including six suites), spread across Decks 4, 5 and 7, and divided into two basic cabin types -- inside and outside, with the six balcony cabins classified as suites. However, there are tweaks and variations within these cabin types, depending on location.

All cabins are designed in simple, light Nordic pine, with off-white walls and have the following: two beds, either the type that can be pushed together or one twin and one pulldown bed (some have additional pulldowns as well); a hair dryer; a decent-sized safe (big enough for a laptop); a flat-screen TV with a number of channels including Disney, English language news channels and a sports channel; a fixed desk with a chair; and a bedside table. Some cabins also have a stool. There is ample closet space, plenty of drawers and room underneath the beds to store suitcases. Power sockets (Northern Europe 220v) are above the desk. There are two fixed lights and two reading lights. The picture window includes a blackout blind. There are temperature controls in the room. Lifejackets are in the muster stations on Deck 5, thus freeing up closet/drawer space.

Most of the cabins (excluding all rooms on Deck 4) have a kettle and tea, coffee and milk provided.

All cabins have exactly the same bathroom (except the suites), which include a shower with a clingy curtain. However, unlike on many cruise ships, there is no raised stall, just a shower area. This means more space (and less chance of the curtain clinging to you), but it also means that when the ship rolls the water goes everywhere. There is a little shelf for products and a clothesline to dry wet clothes.

The hand basin has a mirror with a square area that never mists, storage below and lovely Arctic Pure hand wash, shampoo and shower gel combo and conditioner made exclusively for Hurtigruten, which is fixed to the wall above the basin and in the shower. The floor is also gently heated -- a lovely touch.

There are also some smaller cabins sold as singles (though they also have a pulldown bed, so they can always sleep two people); eight family cabins and four accessible cabins are available in different categories.

Interior: There are 24 inside cabins (classified as Polar Inside), ranging from 9 square meters to 20 square meters. (Unlike on most cruise ships, many of the inside cabins are bigger than the outside cabins. But, it's worth noting that on a cruise like this it's really worth spending a bit more for an outside view.) There are three "grades" within this category: Inside cabin (with a pulldown bed); Inside (with double beds) and Superior, which are the biggest and can be found on Deck 7.

The design varies by deck: Interior cabins on Deck 7 are spacious, with a large bed and a desk marooned in a lot of space (they are crying out for a small table or a chair). The ones on Deck 4 are tiny and often sold as a single cabin (i.e., with no single supplement), even though they can sleep two people.

Oceanview: There are 72 exterior cabins across all three passenger decks (4, 5 and 6), divided into two categories: Arctic Superior and Polar Outside. Within these categories, there are a further nine classifications, depending on size and location. The smallest Polar Outsides start at 9 square meters (around 96 square feet) and are laid out with a single bed and a pulldown bed. These really are tiny and won't have much more than a small desk and a closet. The lowest grades (AJ/J) either have no view or a limited view. The majority of these are on Deck 4. The highest grade in this category are a respectable 13 square meters and have two beds that can be converted into a double. One grade down (N) are also 13 square meters and have two pulldown beds and a single bed (so can sleep three people). There are eight Arctic Superiors at 11 square meters (J) on Deck 7; however, most of the rest come in at 14 square meters, with the largest going up to 18 square meters. This grade also includes an accessible cabin (614), with a fully accessible bathroom. All have kettles and two beds, which can be converted into a double. (Worth noting: Deck 6 is the Promenade deck and people can look right in, so keep your blinds down).

Minisuite: There are just three of these, which range from 16 to 23 square meters. All are on Deck 4 and sold as family cabins. They all vary in design, but all have one thing in common: They can sleep up to four people -- two on beds and two on a sofa bed.

Suite: There are just six suites, all on Deck 6 -- two each on either side of the ship (Owner's suite) and two at the aft (Grand Suite), one of which (632, on the starboard side) is accessible. They are the only cabins with balconies. The suites are different in design, depending on where they are located on the ship.

The Grand Suites have a curtain to divide the two spaces, effectively creating two rooms. The living room area includes a desk with tea- and coffee-making facilities, a sofa, coffee table and two chairs. The oblong bathroom is also bigger, with a larger shower area and a glass door, although the products are the same. The bedroom area includes a queen bed and a chair. The major difference is a narrow balcony, which runs alongside the suite and is accessible via the living room. Note: It's only big enough to stand on.

The two Owner's Suites are at the aft of the ship, and as mentioned above the one on the starboard side is fully accessible (with fully accessible bathroom). A fixed room divider, which acts as a bed head on one side and a wall on which to fix the TV on the other, splits the room. The sleeping area includes a bed and a large window with a window seat; there's also a closet and double doors leading out onto the balcony. The living area includes a sofa, a coffee table and a fixed desk. The balcony has space for numerous chairs and tables.

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