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American Cruise Lines’ new Mississippi River paddler wheeler (set to operate our pick for the Best New Domestic Itinerary in 2012), the 150-passenger Queen of the Mississippi will offer single-occupancy staterooms, slated to comprise about 15 percent of the guestrooms available onboard the new vessel. The dozen units, many of which will feature private balconies and sliding-glass doors, will be unusually spacious for the single-cabin industry standard, at 211 square feet (that’s about twice the size of Norwegian Epic’s 100 square-foot single cabins), and are an altogether rarity for the cruise industry, which works largely on a double-occupancy model. The single cabins will start at $4,685/passenger (or pay $400 more for a balcony upgrade) for a 7-night itinerary; normal double occupancy rates start from $3,995/person, so this represents a digestible rate bump for solo travelers.

The cruise line has likewise announced additional new amenities aboard the new-build ship, which is currently nearing completion in a Maryland shipyard, including even more cabins equipped with sliding-glass doors and private balconies (some 85 percent of the ship will have balconies). The Queen of the Mississippi's staterooms will also offer Wi-Fi, satellite TV, DVD players, and gourmet coffee brewers. Room service, afternoon tea, and bottled water and soft drinks are among the other welcomed extras being additionally made available to guests. americancruiselines.com

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