First Class Accommodations - Franconia and Laconia (1912) Cunard Line
In the internal arrangements as well as in graceful design the Laconia is similar in all respects to the Franconia. She has equally spacious accommodation, broad promenades, well ventilated and heated cabins, in fact all those qualities that ensure her being classed with the Franconia as one of the most successful and popular of the great ships of the sea.
The style of the decoration of the interior of the steamers is what is known in America as "Colonial," arid in Great Britain as " Georgian," and the general effect is a singular refinement and delicacy very attractive to the eye.
The Entrance Hall of both ships, with its quiet, refined dignity, at once gives the key-note to the whole theme of decoration.
The walls, with their broad panels and delicate moulding, cased stanchions with fluted columns and carved caps, are most imposing, while the large windows of the deck house, the light from which is augmented by the oval dome, give a charmingly bright and cheerful appearance. The staircase is in mahogany, with a wrought iron balustrade.
The deck is covered with rubber cork tiling, Gobelin blue and ivory, in large panels, and comfortable wicker furniture is provided at convenient points.
Adjoining the Hall on " A " deck is the Library and Writing Room.
At the forward end of the room is a beautiful reproduction of an old Adam's chimneypiece. The ceiling is an excellent example of the plaster work of the period, and the electric lights have been arranged so as to diffuse the light evenly over the whole room.
The general colour scheme is vieux rose and French grey.
The furniture, copied from old Sheraton models, is in mahogany, inlaid with box, the cane seats and backs of the settees and chairs being fitted with loose cushions covered with rose velvet. A large number of convenient writing tables and chairs have been supplied, and last, though not least, an excellent library consisting of nearly one thousand volumes.
The Lounge, approached by broad corridors, is a large, lofty room, 56 ft. long by 42 ft. wide.
The walls are panelled with St. Domingo mahogany, relieved with columns and pilasters. At the forward end is the fireplace, over which is a framed print of Mrs. Robinson, after Romney. The room is well lighted with large fenestrated windows, draped with green juopé embroidered curtains.
The floor is covered with handsome rugs patterned from old Persian carpets. The centre of the room is fitted with comfortable settees and easy chairs, while around the sides are spring settees, upholstered with cream and green tapestry. The ceiling is delicately modelled plaster, with semi-circular dormer windows, which shed a pleasant light.
To meet the growing demand for dances at sea the floor of this room has been specially levelled and laid with polished Austrian oak.
Situated between the Lounge and Smoking Room is the Gymnasium, a good-sized, lofty and light mom, which will undoubtedly appeal to those seeking amusement and exercise. It is fitted with the most approved health-giving and physical culture appliances.
The fittings include electrically driven riding horses, for ladies or gentlemen, vibratory machine for massage treatment of the body, rowing machines, cycling machines, chest developers, wall bars, horizontal bars, vaulting bar, trapeze, hand rings, ground bars, boxing gloves, fencing sabres, foils, single sticks, dumb bells, Indian clubs, and punching balls.
For those who prefer deck games in the open, quoits, tennis and golf are provided.
A distinct departure has been made in the decoration of the First Class Smoking Rooms, which habitués will at once appreciate. The lighting is obtained by large fenestrated windows at the sides, and dormer windows in the roof. The walls are panelled with specially imported harewood. The veneer embodies curiously interesting figuring, which has been further embellished with delicate inlaid ornament.
At the after end of the rooms is a large elliptical bay window overlooking the Verandah Cafe, and the famous " Cunard Atlantic Highway." A series of columns and arcades tend to break up the sides of the rooms into bays, in which are fitted tables and comfortable spring settees upholstered in an old red tapestry. In the centre a large number of tables and chairs are arranged, while writing accommodation i3 also provided.