S.S. Maria Theresa Cruise Reviews


S.S. Maria Theresa ship stats

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  • Built:

    Jan 2015
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S.S. Maria Theresa overview

Sister ship to the S.S. Catherine, the S.S. Maria Theresa debuts in 2015 to cruise some of Europe's most historic rivers. With all river-view staterooms and tastefully appointed public areas designed to delight, this graceful ship features top-deck suites and staterooms boasting full open-air private balconies, two full-service bars, and a lovely heated pool atop the Sun Deck. Delicious cuisine and stunning views await in the main restaurant with al fresco dining terrace, with complimentary fine wines, local beers and soft drinks during lunch and dinner. Step aboard this elegant floating hotel, unpack once, and immerse yourself in the history and culture of this wondrous region.

S.S. Maria Theresa ratings:

  • Cabin / Stateroom 4.0
  • Destinations and Excursions 4.3
  • Embarkation and Disembarkation 5.0
  • Entertainment 4.0
  • Food and Dining 5.0
  • Onboard Activities 3.5
  • Service and Staff 5.0
  • Ship Quality 4.5

S.S. Maria Theresa cabins

8 cabin categories.

Oceanview Cabin


(2 Reviews)
Avg. Size: 178 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $569/night
Balcony Cabin


Avg. Size: 194 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $710/night
Suite Cabin


Avg. Size: 358 sq. ft. Avg. Cost: $1021/night

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S.S. Maria Theresa deck plans

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4 S.S. Maria Theresa Reviews

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Danube by jamartin70

Sail date: / Traveled as: Couple
Ship: S.S. Maria Theresa / Destination: River Cruises - Europe

Favorites were the cider farm in Linz, chamber orchestra concert in Vienna, Nikolaihoff winery tour. It was nice to have early access to museum in Vienna.


Opera House was not interesting at all.

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The Maria Theresa: Parts of this new ship's design had us scratching our heads by dkaplan

Sail date: / Traveled as: Couple
Ship: S.S. Maria Theresa / Destination: Europe

My wife and I sailed on the third sailing of the new SS Maria Theresa. We enjoyed much about the cruise although a few things left us scratching our heads. I will hit the highlights of the good, the not so good, and the unacceptable.

The good:

The best part of the ship was the food and drink. The food is outstanding and on par with the best cruise ships have to offer (my point of comparison is Crystal). My wife and I enjoyed every meal and appreciated the ties to local cuisine. The chef has taken a light approach to sauces and that was much appreciated. The breads and croissants are to die for. The complimentary wines were wonderful and tailored to each region as the sailing progressed. Coffee is French press - the first cruise line that we have been on that has taken the time to do that.

The staff was very nice and the service was of a generally high quality. The dining service quality was fine but not of the very highest quality. The difference is that cruise ships with the highest level of dining service anticipate your needs; they bring you coffee without asking, they offer a second bread stick before you request it, etc. On the Maria Theresa, we found that we needed to ask - they did not anticipate needs. It was not a big deal as the wait staff brought you what you asked for in short order.

The little alcove for coffee on the lowest floor is delightful. It was a wonderful luxury to head there in the morning in my slippers, get a coffee and croissant, and take it back to the room.

The included shore excursions were marvelous. The guides were uniformly excellent. The highlight was a special chamber orchestra concert that Uniworld arranged just for our ship in Vienna. This special effort that more main stream lines would not go to was much appreciated and something that we will remember for the rest of our lives.

The not so good:

Embarkation was anxiety filled. The ship was not where Uniworld said it would be, so when we got to the dock I had to scramble and ask other ships for help. It turned out that the ship was docked a mile away. It would have been nice if Uniworld had sent an e-mail or contacted our travel agent about the change in dock. But they didn't. Once we schlepped to the ship with our luggage, embarkation was a breeze. So if you book the Maria Theresa, please be aware that, at least in Amsterdam, the ship may be at a very different location than the one listed in your travel documents.

I understand that everyone has different tastes in decor, so the following simply reflects the taste of me and my wife. We had read reviews about Uniworld's decor being over the top and now we know what they mean. This ship seems to reflect Marie Antoinette on a really bad "let them eat cake" day. The philosophy is that more is better - if a mirror looks good, add a lot more. If some marble in the bathroom helps make it wall to wall. If a pouffy drape and flowery upholstery and carpet work, add more. The result to us was not positive. There are so many mirrored surfaces that parts of the ship such as the downstairs hallway and the bathroom outside the dining room make you feel as if you are in a fun house. There are so many pouffy curtains that if the colors weren't subdued you could almost imagine that you were on a floating brothel. In looking back at the cruise it appears that Uniworld was attempting to recreate the feel of Versailles. Our opinion was that to do that effectively you need a much bigger space to work with. A more subdued decor approach works better with the small spaces a river ship has to offer.

We were quite surprised to find that the Maria Theresa does not have any inside forward views and, to us, that was a significant deficit. The lounge is quite nice, but the forward view is blocked off. Sure, you can go up on the Sun deck, but if it is cool, the weather is inclement, or the Sun deck is inaccessible due to low bridges (which happened about 40% of the time on our cruise), then you cannot look out the front of the vessel.

There is a surprising amount of vibration and noise when the ship is at high speed (as it was from Amsterdam to Cologne). During that period we could not sit in the Leopard bar at the rear of the ship due to the shaking. My wife had trouble sleeping during nights that the ship traveled at high speed due to vibration and noise and we spoke to a number of other passengers who said the same thing.

The Maria Theresa boasts the latest technology, but that is a two edged sword. On one hand it is kind of neat that the TV is built into the mirror. On the other hand, I didn't really want to spend my cruise figuring out how to adjust the lights, air conditioning, TV, etc. After hitting the glowing round thing that is supposed to turn on the cabin lights for the fourth time in order to get them to turn on, I started longing for a simple light switch. The complimentary internet was nice and worked better than I expected - at least using my iPad. Trying to use the internet through the TV was an exercise in frustration.

The cabin is cluttered with nonfunctional furniture. You would think that with space being a premium on the ship, that efficiency would be a priority. Not on the SS Maria Theresa. The design emphasis is on the Marie Antoinette look, not utility.

Another example of the lack of utility was the layout of the dining room. Both the wait service areas and buffet stations are at the front of the dining room. So everyone has to walk past them to get to a table. Since the aisles are very narrow, this lead to traffic jams during breakfast and lunch as people entering the dining hall have to navigate past waiters filling drink orders and other passengers filling their plates at the buffet table. The obvious solution would have been to flip the room around and put the service areas and buffet tables at the back. This was one of the areas (along with the lack of frontal view and the lack of drawer space as described below) that had us scratching our heads and asking, "What were they thinking?"

The unacceptable:

When we got to our cabin, we called the front desk to ask where the drawers were for our clothes. After all, the ship was taking a 14 day cruise, so we figured there must be a hidden chest of drawers. The answer we got back was that there were cabins that did not have any drawers and ours was one of them. We were floored. You go on a cruise to not have to live out of a suitcase and now we were being forced to...well.... live out of a suitcase. When we talked to the hotel manager, she apologized and said it was a design flaw. But she didn't offer any useful remedy.

Closing remarks: So would we book another cruise on the Maria Theresa? No. I do not want to cruise in a cabin without a single clothes drawer. I want a ship that has more tasteful decor and provides an interior frontal view. But I do want a cruise line with food this good and staff this nice.

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Fantastic trip up the Danube from Uniworld by morrismg

Sail date: / Traveled as: Couple
Ship: S.S. Maria Theresa / Destination: River Cruises - Europe

I would highly recommend this boat, and this tour. The ports were just gorgeous. There was always something to do, and for us the food was amazing. The dinners with their selection of food and wines and the presentations of the food is what you find in a fine dining establishment.

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3 S.S. Maria Theresa tips


May 20, 2015

Make sure to go to the bow of the ship as you pass through some of the 67 locks between Amsterdam and Budapest to view first-hand these engineering marvels.

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Aug 09, 2018

For those who have not done a river cruise, I'd say to pack lite. There's no need for fancy clothing. Smart casual at dinner was as dressy as it got. Also there are free washer/dryers on board as needed. For our 10 day trip, we met several couples who did not check in baggage. They just used carry on luggage.

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