This Week in Cruise: New Ship Updates on U.S. Rivers and Beyond

Viking Sky

From U.S. rivers to the world's oceans, it's been another busy week for new cruise ships. 

American Cruise Lines has just announced plans for a fleet of five new modern riverboats, the first of which is set to begin sailing U.S. rivers in 2018. 

The first ship, which will have a capacity of 200 guests, will have a European-inspired design with large staterooms with private balconies and hotel-size bathrooms, the cruise line said. 

Construction has already begun on the new modern riverboat at Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, MD. In addition to the new class of modern riverboats, American is building two additional cruise ships at Chesapeake Shipbuilding. American Constellation has a capacity of 170 passengers and is scheduled to begin cruising in May of 2017 and its sibling ship will begin cruising in 2018.

In ocean news, Viking Sky, the third ship from Viking Ocean Cruises, made its official debut this week

The Viking Sky set sail on its inaugural voyage from Civitavecchia (Rome) to Barcelona, after which it will offer itineraries throughout the Mediterranean before heading north to sail Scandinavian and Baltic cruises this summer. Then, the ship will cross the Atlantic and spend the rest of the year sailing itineraries in the Americas and the Caribbean

In luxury news, the Silver MuseSilversea Cruises’ new flagship, successfully completed its sea trials ahead of the ship’s formal christening in Monaco on April 19. The new sip underwent speed, vibration, noise, endurance and propulsion tests, passing all assessments. 

Silver Muse will have 298 suites on board which can accommodate up to 596 guests. The ship will have the highest number of large suites (Silver, Royal, Grand and Owner's) in Silversea's fleet, as well as the highest number of connecting suites for families and friends. The line is increasing the number of Silver Suites to 34, making them available across the top deck. There will also be new two-bedroom Silver Suite configurations, each measuring 1,119 square feet. In all, suite options range from the Classic Veranda Suite, with 387 square feet of living space, to the two-bedroom Owner's Suite, an apartment suite offering 1,389 square feet of space. 

Finally circling back to rivers -- but on the other side of the Atlantic -- this week Emerald Waterways named award-winning Canadian newscaster Coleen Christie the godmother of its newest Star Ship, Emerald Destiny. Coleen will be Canada’s first Emerald Waterways’ godparent. Born in Halifax, Nova Scotia and raised in Victoria, BC, Coleen Christie’s career both on and off screen has included working as a news anchor in Vancouver; hosting for the CTV network; and working as a producer/creative director in television promotion and marketing.

The fifth in the Emerald Waterways’ Star Ship fleet, the 186-guest Emerald Destiny includes the line’s indoor balcony in most cabins, complete with decked area and an open-air system as well as a swimming pool and cinema on the ship’s aft. It is one of three Emerald Star Ships to be launched this year, bringing the total fleet to sevenEmerald Liberté, which will sail the Saône and Rhône rivers in France, will launch in April. The Liberté can host 138 guests and offers all the same amenities as the Destiny, including the swimming pool and cinema. Emerald Radiance, which carries only 112 passengers, will traverse Portugal’s Douro River and will launch in May.

Stay tuned to our cruise page for the latest cruise travel news, trends and updates. 

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