AU Lifetime Supporter
Gathering Team Member
- Aug 24, 2003
That's not really true. The bedrooms don't have steps - they have ladders instead. And I've seen some pretty clever European train bedrooms that have steps that fold out from the wall like a Murphy Ladder which would really save space.Well, there have to be steps to get up to the upper bed regardless if one of the steps is also a toilet.
I've seen those in European sleepers as well, great use of space!That's not really true. The bedrooms don't have steps - they have ladders instead. And I've seen some pretty clever European train bedrooms that have steps that fold out from the wall like a Murphy Ladder which would really save space.
Is that the PA speaker in the right wall over the bathroom? Perhaps one could stifle an overly loud speaker by pushing a piece of soft luggage against it.Another factor that contributed to the high grade on the VLII Bedroom is its extensive storage. I've covered the enclosed cabinet near the sink, and the open closet adjacent to the couch - but like the VLI, it also has huge luggage storage capacity.
As a matter of fact - even though my wife and I struggle to "travel light" - we couldn't come close to maxing out the storage capacity of the VLII Bedroom.
Let's start with the two storage areas below the couch - each measure a minimum of 22"D x 19"W x 9"H:
View attachment 21595
Next is the area above the hallway - measuring at least 45"W x 16.5"D x 15"H:
View attachment 21596
The area we used most heavily was the sizable storage area above the bathroom:
View attachment 21597
It's easier to see the available space when empty. The space is effectively 36"W x 24"D x 16"H, although there is a 6"W x 6"D cutout of unavailable space in the back corner, and a slim area along the back height restricted to 10"H.
View attachment 21598
Even though using the upper storage areas is a challenge with heavy luggage - there is so much storage under the couch that it is hard not to give the bedroom a high grade for total luggage storage.
You also (in theory) have the ability to shut off the speaker altogether. The control for that in the bedroom is above the couch - immediately to the right of the Attendant Call button....Is that the PA speaker in the right wall over the bathroom? Perhaps one could stifle an overly loud speaker by pushing a piece of soft luggage against it.
That's a surprise that there is no outlet in the Upper! Is this true of the Roomettes also?VLII Bedroom at Night (continued)
So my grade? A solid B. Why the B and not higher? Two reasons...
The biggest negative to the VLII Bedroom at night is the lack of clearance between the lower berth and the sink area. While I didn't measure it, we're talking about 4-6" or so.
The photo below was taken from the upper berth - but it does illustrate at least a little bit the lack of clearance between the sink area and the beds at night:
View attachment 21605
This lack of clearance caused my first reaction to the room to be negative - not positive. That's because we boarded at 9:45pm in Richmond VA, and they had already put the lower bed down.
Whether this is Amtrak policy or not I don't know - but it was a poor choice by either Amtrak policy or my (otherwise fantastic) SCA. Along with ourselves, we had considerable baggage to get in the room. With the lower berth down - it was very, very awkward. And for folks less nimble than ourselves - it would have been even more so.
While access to the bathroom at night was fine - access to the sink was not. That meant stumbling along the narrow opening to get to the sink in an effort to wash ones hands after using the en suite.
The last negative factor at night is the lack of a power outlet for the upper berth. In 2020, it really is silly to not provide at least a low-voltage USB port for recharging purposes.
View attachment 21606
Don't let these two negatives sway you - just be fully aware of them. The overall experience of the VLII Bedroom at night was still very good!
Yes. Outlets in the Roomette have expanded from 1 to 2 - but both on the lower level. One adjacent to the sink (as before)...That's a surprise that there is no outlet in the Upper! Is this true of the Roomettes also?
Thanks, this is a design flaw for sure!
I believe you can request it from your SCA or go to the sleeper lounge, whatever you choose. The Cafe is always there too.How early can you get coffee in the morning without the coffee station functioning yet? Did you have to go to the “sleeper lounge” for it? Or would your SCA bring it if asked?
My experience in the Meteor was that the coffee was available from 6am...that's a little bit later than what I remember from pre-Covid days on other trains.How early can you get coffee in the morning without the coffee station functioning yet? Did you have to go to the “sleeper lounge” for it? Or would your SCA bring it if asked?
I don’t have a problem with the early mornings but I have learned to always travel with a few Starbucks VIA packs in case the unthinkable happens and I don’t have access to coffee.I think I remember it being 6:00, with an exception here and there, depending on the SCA.
Even with the coffee station, that timing was difficult for me. I usually have my first cup of coffee at home around 5:00, and as quietly as possible, to prevent a caffeine headache.
Sometimes I carry some dark chocolate for the caffeine just in case I can’t get my coffee before there is a lot of light and noise.
After the first cup, it doesn’t matter when the next ones are.