AmaWaterways (Updated 2018)
The History of AmaWaterways
Family-owned and operated, AmaWaterways has been a passion project for its founders since its start in 2002. President Rudi Schreiner designed his first ship back in 1975 while sailing the Amazon for seven months. Since the completion of the Rhine-Main-Danube Canal in 1992, Rudi has been a driving force for river cruise travel—and for these efforts has been recognized as the “Most Innovative Cruise Executive” and has been presented the prestigious “Lifetime Achievement Award” by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).
Executive Vice President, Co-Founder and Co-Owner Kristin Karst brings extensive experience in luxury travel, river cruising and customer service to AmaWaterways. Rudi and Kristin partnered with Jimmy Murphy, a brilliant travel entrepreneur who built Brendan Vacations. His son Gary now carries on his father’s tradition in his role as Vice President of Sales. These families came together to create the premiere travel experience for AmaWaterways’ guests.
The company now boasts a fleet of 23 modern river cruise ships operating in Europe: AmaCello (2008), AmaDante (2008), AmaLyra (2009), AmaDolce (2009), AmaBella ( 2010), AmaVerde (2011) and AmaCerto (2012).
Be sure to check out 12 Things To Like About The New AmaPrima.
2017 marked the arrival of AmaWaterways’ 20th ship with the new AmaKristina, as well as the company’s 15-year anniversary. AmaWaterways will continue to expand its fleet of luxurious, custom-designed ships with plans for three more new ships in Europe.
In 2018, the company welcomes the AmaLea, sister ship to AmaKristina; and then in 2019, the company introduces a new Rhine River ship, AmaMora, sister ship to AmaLea, and on the Douro River, AmaWaterways will debut the 102-passenger AmaDouro. Also in 2019, AmaWaterways will unveil its biggest ship ever with the AmaMagna, representing a game-changing new design elevating modern luxury even further. See AmaMagna: River Cruising’s Answer To Small Luxury Ocean Ships
AmaWaterways offers cruises along Europe’s Rhine, Moselle, Danube, Main, Seine, Rhône, Dutch and Belgian Waterways, Dordogne and Garonne, and the Douro; Southeast Asia’s Mekong river and Africa’s Chobe river.
Exotic River Cruises
AmaWaterways operates its own luxury cruise ship in Asia, the AmaDara, sailing Vietnam & Cambodia’s Mekong River; and in Africa, AmaWaterways operates the 28-passenger Zambezi Queen sailing the Chobe River.
Inside The Ships of AmaWaterways
As a family-owned and operated company dedicated solely to river cruising, AmaWaterways’ executives focus all of their time and effort on perfecting the art of delivering the quintessential river cruise experience for their guests. This has led to award-winning ships inspired by luxury yachts and designed specifically to maximize every aspect of the guest experience.
Innovative stateroom design features unique twin balconies with both a French balcony and outside balcony, so guests can enjoy the views however they wish. There are also staterooms with connecting rooms to accommodate more than two guests for families and groups who wish to travel together. Other amenities include a variety of dining venues, sun deck walking track and heated pool with swim-up bar, well-equipped fitness room and a fleet of onboard bicycles (for onshore exploration), as well as massage and hair salon.
Gold Medal Dining
Guests give AmaWaterways’ cuisine rave reviews. And that comes as no surprise, considering that Executive Chef Primus Perchtold is a three-time gold medal-winner at the European Championship of Culinary Art. All AmaWaterways’ ships in Europe are also members of the prestigious La Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, an international gastronomic society dedicated to fine cuisine. AmaWaterways’ culinary team crafts menus with the finest and freshest local ingredients. Selections change daily, featuring locally-inspired gourmet cuisine and traditional favorites.
AmaWaterways offers a variety of dining venues—at no additional charge—including The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant. Guests watch as the chef prepares a true tasting menu with three appetizers, a champagne sorbet intermezzo, three main courses and three decadent desserts—all paired with carefully hand-selected wines reflective of the places visited.
Guests can enjoy unlimited complimentary wines from Europe’s great wine regions, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner on board, as well as sparking wine during breakfast.
The AmaWaterways Difference:
- Spacious river view staterooms and suites range from 160 square feet to 350 square feet and most include the revolutionary signature twin balconies—a French balcony and a full outside balcony.
- La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs dining experience—featuring all meals on board, including exquisite multi-course dinners and bountiful breakfast and lunch buffets
- Multiple dining venues, including the one-of-a-kind exclusive Chef’s Table specialty restaurant featuring a unique tasting menu with perfectly paired wines for intimate dining experiences
- Entertainment-On-Demand and Ship-Wide Wi-Fi – all staterooms offer a flat screen monitor featuring moves, news, TV, and music.
- In-room internet access and ship-wide Wi-Fi are also complimentary
- Choice of complimentary shore excursions in every port that are led by expert guides. AmaWaterways offers choices for tours for gentle, regular, and active walkers.
- Expertly guided shore excursions with choices to tailor your experience as you like
- Exclusive Special Interest and Culinary Tours are included excursions to experience local culture in a unique way
- Adventurous guided bicycle and hiking tours, as well as options to bike on your own with complimentary bicycles and helmets
- Enriching onboard programs, including lectures, theme dinners, cooking demonstrations, onboard music performances and afternoon/evening piano music
- Experienced and dedicated Cruise Manager who accompanies you throughout your entire journey, both on land and on your cruise
- With a high staff-to-guest ratio on our ships, our team is fully dedicated to providing each guest with the highest level of genuine service with a smile
- Wellness Program offering a variety of exercise classes; discussion groups with a focus on healthy eating and relaxation. Select sailings in 2018; All European sailings in 2019 (excluding Portugal).
Key Points of Differentiation
As the trendsetter in river cruising, AmaWaterways has garnered several prestigious awards in 2016, including Berlitz. Out of 310 river cruise ships reviewed by the premier travel authority Berlitz—based on accommodations, dining, service and other onboard features—AmaWaterways received the top ten highest-rated ships in Europe.
Innovative Twin-Balcony Staterooms
AmaWaterways has maximized its guest stateroom views with not one, but two private balconies—a French balcony and a full outside balcony.
Top-of-the-line Exclusive Entertainment-on-Demand Center
Every stateroom on AmaWaterways has an Entertainment-on-Demand center, featuring complimentary high-speed Internet access via a flat screen monitor featuring movies, news, sports and satellite TV, as well as a large selection of music channels.
Generous Beverage Policy
Guests can start the day off sipping complimentary sparkling wine, coffee, tea and fresh juice at breakfast. For lunch and dinner, indulge in fine wines distinctive of the regions visited, beer and soft drinks, and be treated to a Sip & Sail daily cocktail hour.
Luxurious Stateroom Surroundings
AmaWaterways elegantly appointed spacious stateroom and suite appointments include white-on-white plush bedding, terry bathrobes and slippers, high-quality bath and body products and bottled water replenished daily. Suites include added enhancements, such as larger sitting areas and expansive bathrooms with both a shower and bathtub. On some twin-balcony ships, there are staterooms with connecting doors, as well as triple accommodations, making river cruising more convenient for friends and family who wish to travel together.
A Menu of Complimentary Shore Excursions
AmaWaterways recognizes every traveler is unique, so the company has carefully curated a menu of included excursions to tempt even the most seasoned travelers. Guests have the freedom and flexibility to choose from a range of guided tours.
For guests who wish to get more active, guided hiking and biking adventures take travelers well beyond the typical tourist paths, deep into the rich culture and natural beauty.
“Special Interest Tours” encourage further immersion into local culture. Authentic Belgian waffles and chocolate making in Antwerp; picnicking in the terraced vineyards of Portugal; or learning how to cook quintessential French cuisine in Provence, are just a few examples. Along with being intertwined with these deeply enriching experiences, guests can take excursions designed to showcase the renowned highlights, as well.
Health & Wellness
AmaWaterways has always been passionate about promoting health and wellness. As the first river cruise line to provide complimentary bicycles and safety helmets, AmaWaterways is always looking to further activate guest vacations and has expanded its popular guided hiking and biking tours throughout its European itineraries as well as the Wellness Program. A Wellness host leads exercise classes and discussion groups with a focus on healthy eating and relaxation (Select sailings in 2018; All European sailings in 2019 (excluding Portugal).
In addition, guests can keep up their exercise routine on board while soaking in the panoramic views with a jog around the track or taking a dip in the pool on the sun deck. Later, they can unwind with a massage and indulge in a variety of healthy cuisine options with menus featuring gluten-free and vegetarian choices.
The Finest Cruise Managers
AmaWaterways’ Cruise Managers are your hosts while you are traveling with them. The company hires only the very the most talented, knowledgeable and experienced in the industry. All skillfully trained and educated with years of experience means you can be assured exceptional levels of professional and personalized service throughout your entire journey both on board and on shore. Customer service, attention to detail and passenger satisfaction are AmaWaterways’ hallmarks.
The Special AmaWaterways Philosophy
AmaWaterways loves providing its guests with the best travel experiences possible. In fact, “Ama” is derived from the Latin word for “love.” It is a concept that permeates every aspect of their river cruises, from the design of the ships to the development of itineraries to the high levels of service delivered to guests. AmaWaterways is always looking to innovate, offer exciting new destinations and add extra value for each and every guest.
If there’s a secret to AmaWaterways success, it’s the company’s distinct business style. It is an efficiently run, hands-on company, with short lines of communication to owners and executives. You’ll always get a live person answering the phone during business hours, never a recording. Throughout its years of exponential growth, AmaWaterways has maintained a warm and family type atmosphere in the company.
Connect with AmaWaterways
- Website: https://www.amawaterways.com/
- Twitter: @AmaWaterways
- Facebook: AmaWaterways
- Instagram: AmaWaterways
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/Amawaterways
Read other articles about the AmaWaterways.