European Waterways, Europe’s leading hotel barge cruising company, announced the completion of an extensive winter upgrade and refurbishment program on many of the company’s hotel barges in its 18-vessel fleet for the 2017 cruising season, which started in April. The company’s “floating boutique hotels” were all thoroughly inspected and given a makeover by a team of designers and skilled craftsmen.
“It’s all about ensuring that our guests enjoy the highest standards of comfort and luxury and can take advantage of all the amenities offered by our very charming hotel barges,” said Derek Banks, managing director of European Waterways. “Our vessels come with rich and fascinating histories, while providing the latest in modern conveniences, such as air conditioning, Wi-Fi, and en suite cabins. Every detail is addressed to satisfy our most discriminating guests.”
Among the major improvements was the complete redesign of the saloon, dining and bar areas of two of the company’s most popular barges, L’Art de Vivre, which cruises the Canal du Nivernais in Burgundy, and Anjodi, which cruises the famous Canal du Midi in Southwest France. Traditional boat-building methods and materials, such as African hardwoods, were used to create the perfect onboard ambience.
Other improvements included the installation of high quality wooden parquet flooring on several vessels, as well as luxurious new soft furnishings and décor in many cabins and public areas under the direction of prestigious British interior designer, Marion Falchi.
The company’s new 12 passenger vessel, Spirit of Scotland, which starts her first season cruising Loch Ness and the Caledonian Canal in June, will boast luxurious new Scottish-weave tartan carpets and other traditional interior features. It’s new look is designed to give her passengers a true “Highlands welcome,” according to Banks.
Banks added, “We will continue to make enhancements like these on our hotel barges every year to create the best possible cruise experience for our guests. All is complemented by the highest level of personal service from an attentive crew, gourmet dining and the best wines as they cruise some of Europe’s most scenic inland waterways.”