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Royal Caribbean ships with virtual balconies

If you have ever wanted to experience a cruise but have never been happy about having to pay extra for that 'sea view'? Read on to hear what Royal Caribbean are offering it's guests that puts having a sea view into a slightly different category.

In February, Royal Caribbean will be unveiling a limited number of newly designed virtual balconies in the interior staterooms on the Navigator of the Seas. After completing it's dry-dock upgrade, the ship is due to set sail next week out of Galveston, Texas.

Royal Caribbean ships with virtual balconies

Virtual balconies are high definition screens that show what's outside the ship in real time, so you can enjoy the scenery from inside your room, even if you don't have a porthole or veranda.

Royal Caribbean virtual balcony

Originally designed for Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas, which is set to sail next November, the cruise line decided to install this futuristic feature in 81 staterooms on Navigator of the Seas.

The rooms will feature an 80 inch, high definition display framed to appear like a real balcony, stretching nearly from the floor to the ceiling. But not only will the balconies virtually look real, there will also be the sound of the sea in real time that passengers can turn on or off if they so wish. To add to the realistic effect, the virtual balconies will also include a banister to give the passengers the feeling of safety.

Royal Caribbean isn't the first cruise line to offer a virtual view on its ships. Disney was the first to offer virtual portholes in its interior cabins, but they are only 42-inch circles made to look like portholes. The display shows a video feed from a live camera outside the ship.

In the end, virtual balconies have all the visual and aural advantages of a real balcony – including a feeling of safety and a lower price point than a real balcony. The only thing missing, of course, is the fresh air.