Fred Olsen’s Boudicca is entering dry dock today (18 November) for a refit. The refit will be done at the Lloyd Werft ship repair yard at Bremerhaven.
The information I’ve got from Fred. Olsen is as follows:
[The ship] will undergo various engineering works, general refurbishment and interior / exterior painting.
During the dry dock, Boudicca will also see 28 cabins on Lido Deck 7 fitted with terrace balconies. These new terrace balcony cabins will extend out 1.2 metres from the ship’s bulkhead, and will provide guests with an increased choice of cost-effective balcony cabins, with access to the outside.
This seems rather strange, because the Lido deck on Boudicca is actually the Promenade deck. The present position is that the wrap-round Promenade goes past these cabins’ windows. The new balconies are going to impinge onto the Promenade somewhat, but the Promenade will be not interrupted, and passengers walking along it will in future be passing in front of these ‘balconies’. There’ll just be a typical transparent waist-high balcony screen between the balcony and Promenade.
To be honest we already know all this because much the same changes were made to Black Watch a year ago, and she’s been sailing with these Terrace Balconies for the whole of this year. The images below show the current deck plans for Black Watch compared with the downloadable PDF deck plan for Boudicca (I see that the interactive deck plan for Boudicca has already been updated.)
There seems to have been some discussion on various forums about them, and some photos have been published. Some of the comments on Cruise Critic were:
- “They would only do for people who’re sociable as everybody on the Promenade Deck walks right in front of you when you’re sitting there. They definitely wouldn’t be any good for someone who wants privacy“;
- “they’ve taken up the space previously available for sun bathing and walking round the ship“
Indeed, I’m not sure that calling them balconies is correct at all. To me, the features of a balcony are a) that it is significantly raised up above the ground, and b) there is an uninterrupted view from the balcony. In the case of these, the view definitely isn’t uninterrupted as the remaining width of the Promenade lies immediately beyond the balcony screen. However I gather that they are raised a little above the Promenade level, but not by much. More of a mini-patio than a balcony, perhaps.
However, I haven’t seen one of them, and some of those comments I’ve listed above go on to say that they are popular. Indeed, there’s a comment from Mike Rodwell, Fred Olsen’s MD, in which he’s quoted as saying “We installed the new terrace balcony cabins on sister ship Black Watch during her dry dock last Autumn, and these have proved very popular with our guests.” So there you are…..