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Tauck has released key details about its two new Inspiration-class vessels that will debut next year: the Grace and the Joy, both with a capacity of 130 passengers. The names were selected from nearly 400 entries submitted by Tauck employees during a company-sponsored naming contest conducted last fall.
“I think these two names are wonderfully evocative of the emotional responses our guests have on our river cruises, both on and off our vessels,” said Dan Mahar, CEO of Tauck. “Grace is defined as ‘refined movement,’ and I can’t think of a better description of how our guests travel along Europe’s rivers.”
The two ships will represent a 125 percent increase in capacity for the company, bringing Tauck’s fleet to nine ships. The company’s fifth Jewel-class ship, the Esprit, is launching this spring.
Both Joy and Grace will offer 22 suites at 300 square feet in size. Each will feature two French balconies with floor-to-ceiling windows, a pull-out couch and walk-in closets with built-in drawers.
In addition, each new ship will offer 32 staterooms that measure 225 square feet as well as 13 accommodations ranging from 150 to 190 square feet. All staterooms feature in-room movies, minibars, luxury bath amenities, 400-thread-count linens, goose down pillows and pillow-top mattresses. Four of the 150-square-foot cabins are dedicated to solo travelers.
The two newbuilds are each designed with eight loft cabins on the lower deck, a solution introduced last year on Inspire and Savor. The 225-square-foot loft cabins have raised platform seating areas, located against the inside of the ships’ hull, with a higher ceiling and impressively tall windows. The ingenious design won the company a Magellan Gold Award from Travel Weekly, a sister publication to TravelAge West.
Grace will sail on the Rhine River, while Joy will cruise the Danube River. Dates for all of Tauck’s 2016 river cruise departures are now available, and travel agents can reserve a preferred itinerary and departure for their clients risk-free, with no cancellation penalties. Tauck will send a notification when pricing is confirmed, and there will be a two-week window to cancel and receive a full refund.