Boston, MA, May 2016 – 2017 is turning into a big news year for award-winning Emerald Waterways. Three new ships to launch (for a total of seven), new combination itineraries, and a program of active excursions are just some of the highlights for Europe’s sleekest river cruise line. Emerald Waterways has set its mark by offering four-star-plus cruises on award-winning five-star ships – making affordable many of the amenities enjoyed by those on more expensive offerings. The complete 2017 river cruise program is outlined in the company’s full-color, 88-page brochure, now available to order on their website in hard copy and downloadable versions.
The fifth Star-Ship to sail the Rhine, Main and Danube is the newly announced Emerald Destiny, set to launch in April, 2017. Also joining the fleet in 2017 will be the purpose-built Emerald Radiance and the Emerald Liberté, bringing the total number of ships to seven. The Emerald Liberté will host 138 guests and while smaller in size than the other Star-Ships, it offers all the same amenities, including the swimming pool and cinema. The April launch of the Liberté will mark the first time Emerald Waterways will sail its own ship on the Saône & Rhône rivers, plying between Arles and Lyon, with optional extensions in Paris and Nice. The itinerary has been enhanced to include Emerald Active programs and an onboard cooking demonstration by an award-winning chef.
The Emerald Radiance, which carries only 112 passengers, will offer an intimate, upscale way to traverse Portugal’s Douro River. Riverview Suites, a new cabin category, are located on the Horizon Deck and clock in at a spacious 330-square feet. These suites feature panoramic vistas from Emerald’s unique drop-down windows and a separate bedroom and living area. With a deluxe walk-in wardrobe, larger bathroom and complimentary mini-bar, these suites offer all the amenities of the Owner’s Suites.
Vacation time is precious, and Emerald Waterways is encouraging guests to make the most of their time in Europe through new, combinable itineraries. By combining two seven-night river cruises into one seamless, 14-night vacation, travelers save money on international airfare, with only one fare for two trips. These combination itineraries include the Jewels of the Rhine with the Sensations of Southern France sailings as well as Sensations of Southern France with the Secrets of the Douro. Transportation between the two itineraries is included in the fare. Guests can add even more memories by incorporating a pre or post trip extension to Amsterdam, Madrid, Lisbon, Paris and Nice.
River cruising is increasingly drawing more active travelers, and the new Emerald Active program gives guests the option to engage in more physical pursuits like guided bike tours and invigorating hikes on six of Emerald Waterways’ most popular European itineraries. Examples include treks in Germany’s dramatic Black Forest and to Wertheim Castle near Miltenberg and a guided bike tour of the Austrian city of Melk or a more urban biking experience around the Serbian capital of Belgrade. All Emerald Active excursions are offered to guests at no additional charge.
For US travelers interested in experiencing the growing trend of riving cruising in 2017, Emerald is offering reduced airfares on all cruises when booked by September 2, 2016, making river cruising not just one of the most relaxing ways to see Europe, but also one of the most affordable. Travelers booking cruises of 15 days or more can fly to Europe from $495, and receive €200 ($225 US) per person onboard credit to be used on drink packages, Discover More optional tours, spa services or laundry. Passengers booking 7-14 day cruises fly from only $995 plus €100 ($112 US) per person onboard credit. Prices start as low as $2,245 per person for a seven-night cruise.
The cruise fare includes all transfers; port charges; all onboard (and some on-shore) meals; unlimited tea and coffee; wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner; bottled water in the cabins; continental breakfast, pre-dinner canapés, and after-dinner sweet treats served in the top suites; WiFi onboard the ship, most shore excursions; bicycles to use for independent touring; and more – as well as all gratuities, a savings of up to $675 per couple on 15-day sailings.
Additional information can be found by contacting your travel agent or on Emerald Waterways’ website, www.emeraldwaterways.com or the US consumer/travel agent reservations line: 855-222-3214. Brochure orders may be placed on the website, or a digital downloadable version is available.