A rendering of the new Queen of the Mississippi // © 2012 American Cruise Lines
River cruise lines are bringing all sorts of new features into Europe, the U.S. and Asia. Here is a look at some of them:
AmaWaterways will introduce the 164-passenger Ama-Certo in Europe this April with the new Twin Balcony design combining a French balcony and step-out balcony, as well as a glass elevator.
American Cruise Lines brings a newbuild to American river cruising in August: The 140-passenger Queen of the Mississippi sternwheeler will combine traditional appearance with greater speed, larger staterooms, alternate dining, a showroom and an Internet lounge.
Two new Suite Ships enter European cruising in March for Avalon Waterways: the 166-passenger Avalon Vista and the 128-passenger Avalon Visionary. Each has two decks of suites with sitting areas and wall-to-wall windows that open to create a balcony effect. On the Mekong River, Avalon is partnering with Pandaw River Cruises to introduce the 32-passenger Avalon Angkor in September.
Scenic Tours’ 169-passenger Scenic Crystal begins service in April as the first of a new generation of ships with full balconies, which can be glassed in with the push of a button, as well as three dining venues.
Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection began operating the new Pandaw-built, 60-passenger River Saigon on the Mekong in mid-January. The ship features French doors opening onto the Promenade in all staterooms, a pillow menu and a massage room.
Viking River Cruises will launch six new 190-passenger Longships in Europe: Viking Freya, Viking Idun, Viking Njord and Viking Odin in March, Viking Embla in July and Viking Aegir in August. The design includes suites with separate bedroom and living room, full or French balconies (or both).