Recommend August 2013 - (Page 12)

avalon express on i cruise cruise onboardreview M AY 2 0 13 fran golden Top: The Panorama Suites offer expansive views of the scenery. Above: The Sky Deck offers a whirlpool, giant chess game and open-air views. 12 august 2013 12-13 CR Avalon.indd 12 We sailed on the new 166-passenger Avalon Expression for its christening cruise, and although the cruise line offers the utmost in onboard delights (we’ll get to those later), it was those expansive views of sloping vineyards, deep forests and ancient castles along the Rhine from our suite’s French balcony that made this river cruise experience truly exceptional. Part of the line’s Suite Ships, the Avalon Expression offers two full decks of Panorama Suites offering wall-to-wall panoramic windows with open-air balcony. These are the accommodations you need to recommend to your clients—no hesitation (as it was recently pointed out during the Cruise3Sixty conference in Vancouver during one of the General Sessions, don’t be afraid to recommend a higher category suite). Avalon Waterways’ managing director Patrick Clark says the glass-walled cabins—two full decks of the Panorama Suites on the Avalon Expression and its sister ships—are supposed to make you feel like you are seeing the sights from your living room. Rather than its sliding glass walls, the line could have gone with traditional balconies, but purposely chose a different approach. “It’s not that we don’t like balconies. We just think they should be on a big ship going on the ocean,” Clark says. Part of the long-established Globus family of brands, Avalon first introduced the Suite Ships concept in 2011, and like all the top river lines in Europe, has been rapidly expanding its fleet. This year, there are five of its ships on the Rhine and Danube. Three more are on order for next year. Most of the cabins on Avalon Expression are Panorama Suites, which at 200 sq. ft. are about 30 percent larger than the industry standard. Cleverly angling the bedroom wall allows for a larger than usual glass door shower in the bathroom—where there are also such niceties as makeup mirrors, and L’Occitane bath products. The extra space counts. When sitting on the carefully positioned, hotel-like bed or on the couch, with the glass open to form a French balcony, clients will be able to hear the sounds, see the sights and even feel a light breeze off the Rhine. 7/23/13 7:29 AM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend August 2013

Editor's Notes
Hotel Desk: Dan Hotels, Israel
Tour Talk: Jacada Travel
Avalon Expression
Cruising the Rivers of Southeast Asia
Girls & Guys Getaways in Las Vegas
Kimpton Takes Center Stage in San Francisco
South Africa: Bicycles, Horses & Wonderful Experiences
A French Twosome with SLH
Bogota, Colombia
Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta
Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto
Westin Grand Cayman
Grand Case Beach Club, St. Martin
Aruba Marriott Resort

Recommend August 2013