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It's a Bird, It's a Plane... No, It's a Steamcoach!

February 17, 2012 By: Susan Young


Photo courtesy Great American Steamboat Company

When Great American Steamboat Company ( launches new cruises with Steamboat American Queen on the Mississippi and other heartland rivers this spring, cruise passengers going on shore trips will board a most unusual touring vehicle -- a Steamcoach!
Steamcoaches are the new line's term for colorful motorcoaches painted to closely resemble the exterior of Steamboat American Queen. So as a Steamcoach passes, pedestrians will likely stop and gaze in wonderment as the vehicle motors by.
The paint job includes a hefty dose of realism -- including showing cruise guests on deck, the boat's Americana-style architecture and its big red paddlewheel.
Executives from the new river line created the Steamcoach concept to provide consistency in the shoreside product and to assure that the quality of guides and coaches won't vary from port to port.
The coaches will simply follow the vessel along its cruise itinerary route. Guests will have the same guides and coaches in each port, so they'll get to know them well -- much as a vacationer might on a European motorcoach package tour.
The line ordered five Steamcoaches. They're likely to turn heads and create high visibility for the new line -- wherever they go in America's heartland. 


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About the Author

Susan Young
A veteran of 100-plus cruises, Susan J. Young, is senior contributing editor for cruises – covering ocean, river and niche cruises for Travel Agent and

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By Susan Young | February 17, 2012
The new Great American Steamboat Company has another way to garner the public's attention. It's created five new motorcoaches to actually resemble the sternwheeler - complete with scenes of cruise guests on deck, the vessel's Americana architectural touches and its big red paddlewheel.
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