|Photo by Bernard Biger|
CroisiEurope has announced the launch of the newest addition to its fleet: the Elbe Princesse. The ship left the Saint-Nazaire shipyard February 10 for its home port of Berlin, Germany.
Transporting the ship between Montoir and Hamburg will be done by “float-on/float-off” vessels and will take approximately five days. It will continue on to Berlin via the Elbe River and Havel Canal, and be inaugurated in the German capital on Thursday, April 14, 2016.
This river ship joins CroisiEurope’s other 43 vessels and will cast off for its first cruise on April 19, 2016, traveling on a new itinerary between Berlin and Prague on the Elbe and Vltava Rivers. The Elbe Princesse is CroisiEurope’s second paddle-propelled riverboat, and its paddlewheel design allows it to draw alongside docks in the center of cities close to all the important historical sites. Starting in April 2016, cruises on this ship will include visits to Berlin; Potsdam and the gardens at the Sanssouci Palace; Lutherstadt Wittenberg, birthplace of the Reformation; Meissen and its porcelain factories; Dresden, dubbed the “Florence of the Elbe”; the natural and architectural wonders of the Elbe Sandstone Mountains; historical Litomerice; and Prague.
In April 2014, CroisiEurope commissioned the construction of the ship by Neopolia, partner to the STX Saint-Nazaire shipyard. This latest generation ship measures 311 feet long and 34.5 feet wide with two decks and two stern paddlewheels. The Elbe Princesse can accommodate 80 passengers in its 40 cabins with Wi-Fi, heating and air-conditioning, flatscreen TV, radio, hair dryer, safe and minibar. A panoramic restaurant can serve all passengers in one sitting. The large bar and lounge with dance floor provide a place to relax or cut up the floor, and the spacious sun deck has a pool and chaises lounges so that passengers can make the most of their vacations.
This new ship’s design will allow it to operate this new itinerary between Berlin and the heart of Prague entirely by riverboat, rather than combining boat and coach transfers as is typically done along this route, for the entire April through October sailing season.