Award-winning river cruise line AmaWaterways has launched its second new vessel on the Mekong River, the 124-passenger MS AmaLotus. The 7-night maiden voyage set sail this week after a traditional Vietnamese praying ceremony at the shipyard. The MS AmaLotus joins the MS La Marguerite (2009) in providing distinctive river cruises from Siem Reap, Cambodia to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam as part of the highly-popular “Vietnam, Cambodia and the Riches of the Mekong” program.
“Vietnam and Cambodia offer an incredible array of interesting, historic and scenic destinations, especially along the Mekong River. We’re extremely proud to introduce a second ship there with the features and amenities of the MS AmaLotus,” said Rudi Schreiner, President, AmaWaterways.
Featuring ultra-spacious 624-sq. ft. Suites; ten Jr. Suites at 290 sq. ft. and standard staterooms at 226 sq. ft., the MS AmaLotus boasts outside balconies on 90 percent of her staterooms. With a décor that combines Colonial elegance with regional Khmer accents, staterooms include comfortable sitting areas, individually controlled air-conditioning, a mini-bar, safety deposit box, kimonos and slippers and luxurious bathtub (Jr. Suites/Suites). Guests enjoy fine dining consisting of both Asian and Western specialties; free-flowing complimentary wine and beer at lunch and dinner plus complimentary house-brand spirits and soft drinks throughout the cruise. On board highlights include folklore dances, musical performances and culture discussion forums.
The expansive Sun Deck on the MS AmaLotus provides the perfect place to enjoy a refreshing cool drink, take a swim in the outdoor pool or simply admire the spectacular sunsets over the Mekong. The ship also features two lounges, a fitness room, spa and gift shop. Click Here to View the Ship’s Photo Gallery.
The hotel manager aboard the MS AmaLotus is European, and the entire staff is fully English-speaking.
Launched in 2009, the “Vietnam, Cambodia and the Riches of the Mekong” river cruise and land program is part of the “AmaVoyages” line of river cruise vacations. Separate and distinct from the AmaWaterways European river cruise product, “AmaVoyages” deliver an exceptional experience in some of the world’s most intriguing destinations. The “Vietnam, Cambodia and the Riches of the Mekong” itinerary includes two nights in vibrant Hanoi followed by an overnight aboard a luxury junk in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ha Long Bay. A short flight then transports guests to Siem Reap, Cambodia, the gateway to the magnificent Angkor Archeological Park. A two-night stay there includes tours of world-renowned sites such as Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm, Terrace of the Elephants, Terrace of the Leper King, the Bayon and newly-reopened Baphuon Temple.
From Siem Reap, guests embark on their 7-night odyssey along the Mekong River from Cambodia to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam. Calls include the bustling capital of Phnom Penh and numerous points of historical and scenic interest, including Kampong Chhnang, Oudong, Tan Chau, Sa Dec, Xeo Quyt and Cai Be. Along the way, guests experience the unforgettable hospitality and ancient traditions of this singular part of the world as they visit floating markets, rain forests and Buddhist monasteries; ride an oxcart and a trishaw and participate in the delicate craft of rice-paper making. The “Vietnam, Cambodia and the Riches of the Mekong” program concludes with an overnight in Ho Chi Minh City.
Founded in 2002 by river cruise pioneer Rudi Schreiner, river cruise executive Kristin Karst and founder of Brendan Vacations, Jimmy Murphy, AmaWaterways is the premier river cruise line on Europe’s Danube, Rhine, Main, Mosel and Rhone rivers. Known for its custom-designed ships, extensive complimentary amenities and personalized service levels, AmaWaterways consistently leads the way in river cruising. The line’s award-winning fleet in Europe includes the MS AmaVerde (2011); MS AmaBella (2010); MS AmaLyra (2009); MS AmaDolce (2009); MS AmaCello (2008), MS AmaDante (2008); MS AmaLegro (2007) and the MS AmaDagio (2006). In the spring of 2012, AmaWaterways will introduce the new 164-passenger MS AmaCerto in Europe, joining the MS AmaVerde and MS AmaBella in offering an exclusive Twin Balcony design in the majority of staterooms; multiple dining venues; a heated swimming pool on the Sun Deck plus many more unique design elements.
The AmaVoyages product line consist of river cruises and land programs that are separate and distinct from the AmaWaterways experience in Europe, but still of the highest caliber in the region. Included in the AmaVoyages collection are the “Russian Waterways” cruises from Moscow to St. Petersburg on the newly-redesigned MS AmaKatarina, and the “Vietnam, Cambodia and the Riches of the Mekong” program.