Emerald Waterways Launches its First Ship

Travel agents on the inaugural voyage report that the Emerald Sky is an affordable river cruise option suited to a younger demographic By: Marilyn Green
Emerald Sky’s sleek design appeals to a younger demographic. // © 2014 Emerald Waterways
Emerald Sky’s sleek design appeals to a younger demographic. // © 2014 Emerald Waterways

The Details

Emerald Waterways (www.emeraldwaterways.com)

The world’s newest river cruise line, Emerald Waterways, launched in April with the 182-passenger Emerald Sky, the first of two vessels to debut this year. Travel agents onboard the inaugural cruise said they see the ship as an affordable option that will appeal to a younger demographic.

“Emerald Waterways has broken the age barrier with the Emerald Sky and the brand,” said Theresa Mullen, owner of The Travel Renaissance in Quincy, Mass. Mullen believes the new cruise line is a great option to offer people in their 40s and 50s, as opposed to the 60s and older group that is now the backbone of river cruise clientele. 

“Not that an older river cruiser would not enjoy this ship and its services and amenities,” Mullen said. “[But Sky’s] sleek and shiny decor, spacious deluxe staterooms, indoor pool with retractable roof that converts into a movie theater, great food and service and many inclusions would appeal to those who are still out in the world working for a living and who enjoy travel and nice things.” 

Mullen added that Emerald Waterways would also be a great option for charter groups, incentive groups and theme cruises.

Stephanie Daniels, a travel planner at Leaps and Bounds Travel in Salem, N.H., described the Sky as “a beautiful new ship that offers clients affordability in river cruising.” Daniels noted that the line’s affordability sets it apart from sister company Scenic Cruises, which is geared to the upscale luxury cruiser.  

“There are no butlers on board for your every whim, but what it does have is an attentive staff willing to offer you what you want,” Daniels said. 

“I would compare Emerald with Viking as far as price point,” she added. “The demographics I consider to be a younger age. Emerald is good for the 40-50-year-old who has traveled and is looking for a new way to do it.”  

The Sky is the first of two vessels that Emerald Waterways will debut this year. Emerald Waterways and Scenic Cruises are both owned by Scenic Tours. 

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