Avalon Rides the Waves

The company welcomes two new ships to its fleet

By: Ana Figueroa

Riding the “waves” of numerous travel industry experts, who have named river cruising as one of the most popular travel trends for 2007, Avalon Waterways is proud to announce the addition of two new ships to its fleet. The Avalon Tranquility and Avalon Imagery were christened this spring in Trier and Nuremberg, respectively, just days before beginning their inaugural season on Europe’s waterways. The christenings occurred amidst the highest demand for river cruises in the company’s history more than 90 percent of the Avalon Imagery’s staterooms and 85 percent of the Avalon Tranquility’s staterooms have already been sold for the 2007 season.

Sister ships to the Avalon Tapestry, which was christened in 2006, this family of vessels features new architectural and technological elements, designed to enhance travelers’ cruising experience. All three ships incorporate the Silent Drive System (SDS), which places the navigational bridge in the stern and away from the passenger compartment allowing for a smoother and quieter cruise experience than traditional small ships, as well as more spacious interior designs. Because of the SDS, the Sky Deck is also more spacious than those of other European river cruise vessels, providing a vast area for outdoor activities, sightseeing and relaxing. Just like the Avalon Tapestry, the lounge and restaurant are both located at the front of the Avalon Tranquility and Avalon Imagery, offering spectacular, unobstructed views of the passing landscape. Additionally, the new ships include a new feature an outside observation deck, just forward of the main lounge, which allows passengers an up-close-and-personal experience as the ship enters locks and passes under bridges.

“With the launch of the Avalon Tranquility and Avalon Imagery, we’re continuing to lead the phenomenal trend of river cruising by introducing the most modern ships, built specially for North American travelers,” said Patrick Clark, managing director for Avalon Waterways. “We remain confident that the demand for river cruising will continue to grow. We already have plans for additional ships in 2008 and 2009, and we’ve also expanded our offerings around the world, including new cruise itineraries in hot destinations such as China, Egypt and the Galapagos Islands.”

Each stateroom aboard the new Avalon vessels faces outside and features spacious closets, individual climate control, satellite TV, a hair dryer and a modern bathroom with shower. In addition, the ships boast nonsmoking interiors, an exercise room, fitness center and hair salon. Finally, as is the case with all Avalon Waterways ships, the Avalon Tranquility and Avalon Imagery also provide wine with dinner and a full team of English-speaking staff members.

The lineup of 2007 cruise vacations for Avalon Tranquility and Avalon Imagery include “Waltzing the Danube,” “Legendary Danube,” “Jewels of Central Europe” (new for 2007), “Central European Experience” (new for 2007), “Magnificent Europe,” “The Blue Danube Discovery” and “Christmastime Cruise.”

As a member of the Globus family of brands, Avalon Waterways is backed with more than 75 years of experience taking travelers around the world. The privately held company has offices worldwide with its U.S. distributor based in Littleton, Colo.