River Royale Review

5.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating

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5.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
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By Gary Buchanan
Cruise Critic Contributor

River Royale Overview

Editors Note: In October 2018, River Royale will be taken out of service and revamped as a "super ship" with new restaurants and suites. It will be come back in April 2019 with a new name, Bon Voyage. The ship will continue to sail itineraries in Bordeaux.

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There's no doubt that River Royale offers one of the most refined experiences among the array of cruises now operating from Bordeaux. It has the highest staff-to-cruiser ratio in the river cruise industry, all-inclusive pricing that covers excursions and gratuities, and cuisine and service that are on a par with discerning restaurants ashore. There are also no annoying announcements to disturb onboard tranquility. Within this boutique ambience, passengers can enjoy a relaxed, destination-focused experience.

River Royale was one of the most expensive river vessels ever built, and its 2013 remodeling has ensured this boat is a study in decadence and style. The distinction is reflected in the materials and furnishings, with expensive wood, marble, leather, fabrics, glass and brass evident at every turn. The signature decor is daring, dynamic and colorful.

First-time cruisers are in for a treat, while experienced river cruisers will discover this is a vessel that doesn't short-change on style. What's more, the itinerary allows an up-close-and-personal encounter with one of the world's finest wine-growing areas through first-rate shore excursions.

Fellow Passengers

Geared primarily to North Americans, Uniworld also targets English-speaking travelers from the U.K. and Australia. Consistent with most European river cruises, Uniworld's voyages tend to appeal to more senior passengers, but the ship's onboard ambience also attracts younger cruisers, especially in the 40-plus market. Cruises range from a week to a month and are designed to appeal to passengers seeking an unparalleled river cruise experience.

Uniworld River Royale Dress Code

The dress code is casual during the day and smart casual at night. (Bring sturdy, comfortable shoes for walking tours.) Ladies wear cocktail dresses, skirts or dresses, while men are attired in slacks and shirts (jackets optional). Passengers tend to dress up for the captain's welcome and farewell dinners or for dining in the Claret Room and Blue Fox Cafe.

Uniworld River Royale Gratuity

The onboard currency is the euro. Gratuities for onboard staff and tour guides are included in the fares. Additional tipping is not expected.

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La Durance Deck
Bordeaux Deck
La Gironde Deck

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Uniworld River Royale Ship Stats

  • Crew: 41
  • Launched: 2006
  • Decks: 3
  • Passengers: 130
  • Registry: Netherlands
River Royale Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 5.0 0.0
Entertainment 3.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 2.0 0.0
Family 1.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 5.0 0.0

Uniworld River Royale Member Reviews

River Royale
Sail Date: Jun 2018
smooth TGV first class train to Bordeaux , which is also easily done on one's own if desired. The River Royale is beautiful, the service is impeccable. After a short 10 minute wait we were checked in at the...Read More
River Royale
Sail Date: Apr 2018
dinner talk about Uniworld. The sailing date (29th April08-Days Bordeaux, Vineyards & Chateaux @ River Royale) that we took was promoted at the talk as an epicurean journey with fine wines, different from...Read More
River Royale
Sail Date: Sep 2017
prepared and two of the dinners were outstanding. Staff was super attentive and friendly. The River Royale was in top shape and except for a bit of trouble with the door lock everything worked perfectly...Read More
River Royale
Sail Date: May 2018
Fabulous cruise with delicious local fresh food and very well presented. Plenty of variation to choose from each day. The red and white French wines were great however when we asked for French Champagne on arrival...Read More

Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection Fleet