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Tuesday, May 7, 2024

From Reserve Collection to Sanctuary Suite on Sun Princess: Everything You Need to Know from our Experience in a Mini Suite

Embarking on a cruise offers an exciting opportunity to explore new destinations while enjoying the comfort and luxury of a floating resort. In this blog post, we're thrilled to share some exciting news about the transformation of your Mini-Suite aboard the Sun Princess into the Sanctuary Suite. We were on board the Sun Princess cruise ship for its second sailing. We explored, asked questions and stayed in a Reserve Collection Mini-Suite. What will be different soon? Read this post to find out!

You probably saw our previous blog post detailing the experience of staying in the Reserve Collection Mini-Suite. Well, now, for sailings after October 14th, 2024, that same suite is undergoing a remarkable evolution—it's being rebranded as the Sanctuary Mini-Suite!

Princess Cruises quietly announced the introduction of the Sanctuary Collection, coinciding with the grand christening ceremony of the Sun Princess. This collection includes three tiers of staterooms: Signature Collection Suites, Mini-Suites, and Premium Deluxe Balconies. Interestingly, it appears that the former Reserve Collection Mini-Suites will now be categorized under the Mini-Suite tier within the Sanctuary Collection.

So, what does this transformation entail? Sanctuary Collection passengers will enjoy exclusive access to the ship's top deck retreat, now known as The Sanctuary Club. Along with this, they'll have access to a range of high-end amenities, including exclusive dining and relaxation areas, as well as the Princess Premier bundle.

But let's delve deeper into the changes. What about access to The Sanctuary for those not in the Sanctuary Collection? During our cruise, it was only guaranteed for Signature Collection staterooms. However, management mentioned the possibility of day passes, mainly on port days, priced at $79 per person for port days and $99 per person for sea days. Dining is another aspect shrouded in mystery. While the website mentions specific dining options for certain room categories, it's not entirely clear for others.

Now, let's talk numbers. While the initial cost of our Reserve Collection Mini-Suite was estimated to be 15-20% higher than a basic Mini-Suite, booking a Sanctuary Collection Mini-Suite or Premium Deluxe Balcony will set you back approximately $200 per person per day more. However, considering the inclusions like the Princess Premier package and Sanctuary access, this seems like a reasonable price for the added benefits.

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But what about the experience within the Sanctuary Suite itself? Let's rewind a bit to our initial blog post about the Reserve Collection Mini-Suite. Upon stepping into cabin 17408 on Deck 17, known as the Lido deck, guests were greeted with the elegance and sophistication of the Reserve Collection Mini-Suite. Situated conveniently near key amenities like the Lido pool and Love by Britto, this spacious cabin promised a delightful stay.

Delving deeper into the interior of the Mini-Suite, warm colors and tasteful décor created an inviting ambiance. From the well-appointed sleeping area with luxurious Princess Luxury Beds to the expansive living space adorned with modern amenities, every corner exuded comfort and style.

Thoughtful details enhanced the functionality of the Mini-Suite, including ample storage options, convenient workspaces, and upgraded furnishings. The upgraded bathroom experience bid farewell to traditional cruise ship bathrooms, introducing premium toiletries and a spacious shower designed for ultimate relaxation.

Stepping out onto the balcony, guests were greeted with panoramic views of the ocean, offering a serene retreat to unwind and reconnect with the sea.

Now, with the transformation into the Sanctuary Suite, these luxurious accommodations are elevated to new heights, offering an unparalleled cruise experience filled with relaxation, indulgence, and unparalleled service.

In our opinion, the Sanctuary Collection is appealing for those seeking guaranteed access to The Sanctuary and dedicated dining areas. However, some longtime Princess Cruisers may not appreciate these bundled offerings. Nonetheless, there's still the option to book your favorite room without the Sanctuary Collection perks.

So, what do you think about these changes? Join our group to discuss it!


Exploring The Sanctuary: A Retreat for Serenity

Now, let's take a closer look at The Sanctuary aboard the Sun Princess, a haven of tranquility and relaxation. Located on Deck 18 aft, The Sanctuary offers passengers a serene escape from the bustling activities onboard.

Accessible from the glass elevators spanning decks 10 to 18 or the mid-AF elevators, The Sanctuary welcomes guests with its dedicated crew and a serene atmosphere. An exclusive bar awaits as guests step inside, offering a selection of beverages to enjoy.

The pool area, a new addition to The Sanctuary on the Sun Princess, provides a refreshing retreat for guests to cool off and unwind. The space features various seating options, including padded chase loungers, double-padded beds, and plastic sculpted loungers, ensuring there's a spot for every guest to relax in comfort.

For those seeking additional indulgence, cabanas are available for rent, offering a private oasis complete with amenities like bathrobes and slippers. While the cabanas were not yet complete during our visit, they promise to be a luxurious addition to The Sanctuary experience.

Exclusive to Signature Collection Suite guests, the Signature Sun deck offers elevated views and additional amenities for a truly VIP experience. With its dedicated food and beverage service, comfortable seating, and panoramic vistas, the Signature Sun deck is the epitome of luxury within The Sanctuary. But it is unlikely that mini suite or deluxe balcony Sanctuary cabins will have access to this deck although Princess hasn't clarified this yet.

Despite its many highlights, The Sanctuary is not without its challenges. The proximity to Deck 19 activities may pose a concern for some guests seeking a quiet retreat. Additionally, the limited shade options within The Sanctuary may impact guests' comfort during sunnier days at sea.


Overall, The Sanctuary on board the Sun Princess offers a blend of relaxation, luxury, and exclusivity for discerning cruisers. Whether you're seeking a peaceful escape or a refreshing dip in the pool, The Sanctuary provides a serene haven for passengers to unwind and rejuvenate during their voyage.

So, next time you're aboard the Sun Princess, be sure to carve out some time to experience the serenity of The Sanctuary—a true oasis at sea.

As the Sun Princess sets sail into a new era of luxury and indulgence, the transformation of your Mini-Suite into the Sanctuary Mini-Suite promises an elevated cruise experience like no other. With exclusive access to The Sanctuary, a haven of tranquility and relaxation, guests can unwind in style amidst panoramic ocean views and attentive service. The combination of the premier package and access to the sanctuary makes the additional expense over a traditional mini-suite worth it in our opinion. While the introduction of the Sanctuary Collection brings forth exciting changes and additional perks, such as exclusive dining options and priority access to amenities, there are still some uncertainties lingering. One such concern is the ambiguity surrounding the location of the sanctuary dining room, leaving guests eager for more clarity on this aspect of their experience. The allure of the Sanctuary Suite in the Signature collection lies in its promise of serenity, luxury, and unparalleled service—a retreat within a floating paradise. Whether you're basking in the sun on the Signature Sun deck or indulging in a private cabana experience, the Sanctuary Suite invites guests to embark on a journey of relaxation and rejuvenation, creating memories to last a lifetime. But of course the Signature collection suites come at a cost over the deluxe balcony and mini suites, and have access to the signature collection dining room and lounge. Just like the Signature Sun Deck, we predict that mini suite guests and deluxe balcony guests in the Sanctuary collection won't have access to these locations. So, as you plan your next cruise aboard the Sun Princess, consider indulging in the Sanctuary Collection for a truly unforgettable voyage filled with moments of bliss and tranquility. Your sanctuary awaits, promising a cruise experience like no other. Bon voyage and may your journey be filled with unforgettable moments of serenity and luxury aboard the Sun Princess! Be sure to book your next cruise at Princess Cruises' website.

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