Uniworld building two new ships


US-based Uniworld Boutique River Cruises has announced that it is in the process of building two more vessels, which will both launch in spring 2014.

The SS. Alexandra and SS Catherine will be designed by Beatrice Tollman, president and founder of Red Carnation Hotels; and her daughter, Antoinette, godmother, namesake and lead designer of Uniworld’s 164-passenger ship, which is sister to the Alexandra.

“There is no doubt in my mind that both S.S. Alexandra and the S.S. Catherine will continue to set new luxury standards in river cruise ships in Europe,” said Uniworld chief executive Guy Young.

The Alexandra is due to sail along the Rhine, Main and Danube while the Catherine – inspired by the recently renovated River Royale – will be based in France.

The firm is also due to introduce its next ship, the Queen Isabel, in 2013 – on a 10-night Spain, Portugal and the Duoro River itinerary.

The 118-passenger vessel holds slightly less than the ship it will be replacing (the Duoro Spirit) leaving more room for suites – 18 juniors in total at 215 square feet and two bigger suites at 323 square feet complete with balconies.

“While the Douro Spirit is a chic and modern ship, the Queen Isabel will have a design scheme more representative to our other ships with classic and traditional luxury,” Young said.

 The company also recently announced that it would be adding a second vessel to the Mekong River next – due to the increasing popularity of Vietnam and Cambodia. The new ship – the River Orchid – will have 30-state rooms and be built in French colonial style.

“The demand for Vietnam and Cambodia has exceeded our expectations,” explained Young. “We quickly sold out all of our departures in 2012, and so it made sense for us to add an additional ship along the Mekong.”

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