Friday, February 18, 2011

Friday Afternoon with AMA Waterways 2/18/11

Since we have last crossed paths we have gone from living in the frozen tundra to this remarkable spring like weather. I wish I could tell you that I am going to plant my vegetable garden, but I have a feeling that Mother Nature is going to lay another dusting on us before I can declare that Spring is in the air. It really is nice that we have gone from the low teens to the mid seventies in one week. I believe a Happy Dance is due in honor of this weather blessing. This week also brought joy and sadness. I call it the triple whammy! Valentine's Day, my wife's birthday and my oldest son's birthday all in the same week. My joy is that I get to celebrate with them, but my sadness is that I am getting older. Ok, enough of the personal stuff of the week. Just a heads up, there is still time and space available to get the perfect Spring Break trip reserved. The really cool thing is that Alaska is going to be a hot item this summer and there is still ton's of options. If you have been considering Alaska, you should really consider this summer. You can check out my blogs on my amazing journey to Alaska on the right hand side of the page. With Mardi Gras in the air and Spring Break just around the corner I though we would start this journey off with a nice Hurricane. My favorite is Pat O'Briens in New Orleans. You start out with 1 oz white rum, 1 oz Jamaican rum, 1 oz Bacardi 151 rum, 3 oz orange juice, 3 oz unsweetened pineapple juice, 1/2 oz grenadine syrup and crushed ice. Combine all ingredients, mix well (shake or stir). Pour over crushed ice in hurricane glass. Best enjoyed through a small straw. Garnish with fruit wedge if desired. Now sit back and enjoy your hurricane as you dream about your next destination. AMA Waterways cruise through the rivers of Europe, Russia and on the Mekong River. Sit back while we dissect AMA Waterways.




  • Europe's newest and most state-of-the-art river cruise ships
  • Deluxe staterooms are 170 sq.ft. with hotel-style beds that can be set up as two twin beds or one large double bed
  • Junior Suites are extra spacious at 255 sq.ft. on the upper deck
  • Guaranteed share program for single travelers (Cat. B only)
  • Infotainment System in all staterooms with movie and music library and complimentary internet
  • Fine gourmet cuisine emphasizing local ingredients with fresh produce and seafood
  • Welcome Reception and Farewell Gala Dinner
  • Quality wines from Europe's most famous wine regions included with every dinner onboard ship
  • Open seating amidst elegant, yet comfortable surroundings
  • Grand Panorama Lounge with bar and dance floor
  • Aft Lounge for up to 35-50 Passengers - ideal for special group events/meetings
  • Daily entertainment onboard and/or on shore, plus nightly piano music and dancing onboard
  • Special highlights including folklore performances, lectures, theme dinners and local activities
  • Wellness Center with a fitness room and sauna
  • Beauty salon and masseuse
  • Sun Deck with whirlpool and walking track
  • Complimentary bicycles to explore town on your own
  • Elevator reaching four different levels: the Restaurant (Level 1), the staterooms on the Cello Deck (2), the Lobby and Panorama Lounge (3) and the staterooms on the Violin Deck (4)
  • Professional Cruise Director and expert local guides
  • All English language onboard
  • Non-Smoking Environment (smoking only on Sun Deck)



  • Most luxurious and comfortable cruise ship ever built for Russian rivers; completely refurbished
  • Deluxe cruise accommodation in 110 sq.ft. outside staterooms (20% larger than other ships); triple staterooms also available (Cat. D only)
  • Jr. Suites are 220 sq. ft. with sitting area and two beds that can be put together; spacious Suites are 330 sq. ft. and have a dayroom, refrigerator and separate bedroom
  • Bathrooms feature a separate shower area, which is unique for Russian ships
  • Superb dining with all meals included in the elegant restaurant, which accommodates all guests in one seating without fixed seating arrangements
  • Quality wines or juice included with every dinner; complimentary bottled water in every stateroom
  • Welcome Reception and Farewell Gala Dinner
  • Charming Katrina Restaurant lined with panoramic windows; beautiful Kostroma Lounge and Neva Bar
  • Spacious Sun Deck and smaller Patio Deck—idea for cocktail receptions
  • Daily entertainment onboard and/or on shore, plus nightly piano music and dancing onboard
  • Special highlights including folkloric performances, lectures, theme dinners and local activities
  • Indoor swimming pool and sauna
  • Pushkin library, Tchaikovsky Hall, beauty salon and souvenir shop
  • Non-Smoking Environment (smoking only on Sun Deck)



  • Deluxe cruise accommodations with hotel-style beds that can be set up as two twin beds or one Queen bed
  • Junior Suites are 205 sq. ft. with separate sitting area and extra-spacious bathroom
  • Standard staterooms are 130 sq.ft. (Cat. D) to 140 sq. ft.; (Cat. A, B and C); Single stateroom is 115 sq ft. and Triple stateroom (Cat. D) is 180 sq. ft
  • Stateroom amenities include TV with movie on demand, minibar, safe, hairdryer and individually-controlled air conditioning
  • Gourmet meals with open seating arrangements
  • Complimentary wines from France’s great wine regions served during dinner onboard ship
  • Panorama lounge with bar and dance floor
  • Wireless internet (need to provide own laptop)
  • Wellness Area with fitness room, indoor swimming pool, sauna and solarium
  • Whirlpool on the Sun Deck
  • Library and souvenir shop



  • Deluxe cruise accommodations with hotel-style beds that can be set up as two twin beds or one queen bed
  • Standard staterooms are 135 sq. ft.; Cat. A and B feature private balconies and Cat. C and D offer large picture windows
  • Stateroom amenities include TV, individually-controlled air conditioning, hairdryer, vanity with sitting area, and full length mirror
  • Gourmet meals with open seating arrangements and complimentary local wine and port wine are served with every dinner onboard
  • Sun Deck with two Jacuzzis, swimming pool and bar
  • Souvenir shop
  • Internet access
  • Elevator that reaches the Lower, Main and Upper decks


Our mission is to deliver an exceptional vacation experience with everlasting memories onboard our elegant vessels. Our ships are the top river ships cruising Europe’s legendary rivers and the Russian waterways. Your holiday is as important to us as it is to you.

We will do our best to provide superior service to ensure your river cruise experience is a most pleasurable one. We continuously enhance our cruise programs and activities to make sure they are of the highest quality in each of our ports of call throughout Europe, Portugal and Russia.

The common language onboard our European vessels is English. Many of our staff is Hungarian and Slovakian; however, there are also several Austrians, Bulgarians, Croatians, Dutch, Germans, Portuguese, Romanians and Swiss employees with English as their common language. In Russia, aboard the MS TOLSTOY, our staff is mostly Russian and Ukrainian. Most of our passengers are American, Canadian and Australian.

We offer a full program of daily included shore excursions, as well as entertainment and educational options. This is your vacation, so it is always your decision to either join the excursions or to relax onboard and let the wonderful scenery float by. Our ships feature state-of-the-art public areas with great art work, new amenities and services, exquisitely decorated staterooms and gourmet dining; all of which provide an unparalleled cruise vacation. We pride ourselves on setting the standards in European river cruising.


Our onboard culinary staff offers sophisticated menus comprised of wonderful soups, fresh produce, high quality choice cut meats, and fresh fish and seafood. Your Maitre d' always welcomes you to the restaurant with a bright smile.

Start your day with a lavish gourmet champagne breakfast buffet. Choose from a rich assortment of breads, croissants and pastries, a variety of fresh fruit, yogurt, cereals, and smoked salmon. Sample the delicious cheeses, cold cuts and local sausages, as well as our daily regional specials. An array of traditional breakfast items is also available from the menu.

Return from your shore excursion to a delicious lunch. Start with mouth-watering hot or cold appetizers, homemade soups, then choose from a selection of great entrees, finish off with a delectable dessert and complimentary cappuccino.

In the evening, be our honored guest for an elegant dinner or a traditional theme night with a feast of regional specialties. Enjoy delicious cuisine and complimentary free-flowing wines from the local vintners. Our kitchen crew knows how to orchestrate a truly memorable dining experience.




Our knowledge of Europe’s treasures and hidden secrets impart a unique and personal touch to our specially-designed itineraries. You will experience fascinating history and local traditions as you cruise past tranquil landscapes, alluring hamlets and magnificent hilltop castles.

Shaking hands with the Mayor and sharing a toast with the Wine Queen are just two distinctly unique experiences offered on our cruise through the picturesque Mosel Valley. Be our guest for special regional wine-tastings or a unique glass-blowing demonstration. Special arrangements have been made throughout your cruise for you to experience some of the most interesting sightseeing available.

Our enhanced shore excursion program gives you an in-depth, authentic view of the cultures and histories you will visit. You will discover the area's highlights, as well as places only the locals know about. Europe's most charming towns and their friendly people are waiting to welcome you with open arms.


As the stars shine overhead and the moon casts its reflection, romance and excitement fill the air along the riverbank. Toast your friends and savor our perfectly paired free-flowing regional wines as you share your discoveries and highlights of the day with your new friends and traveling companions.

After dessert, join us in the Panorama Lounge to watch local folkloric dancers perform an authentic Bavarian Schuhplattler or to listen to musicians perform classical selections.

Dance the night away with the locals at the many open-air festivals and events during the warm summer months. Your ship is docked close to the heart of each town and city so you can easily venture ashore to delve into the spirit of each city’s exciting evening culture, traditions and activities.









As you can see above AMA Waterways sets it’s self apart from the other River Cruise lines. They have one of the youngest and most state of the art River Cruise fleets in the industry. What are you waiting for? Take a look at River Cruising. What a great way to visit the world with your spouse, your mom & dad or your grandmother or grandfather! Are you part of a group who loves history, art, wine, Christmas Markets or the traditions of other countries throughout the world? If you are, then River Cruising is for you! If you have any questions let me know. I would love to help you plan your next journey on a river cruise! Until we unite again remember to always love your Travel Agent. He needs lots of love, plus he is a real nice guy! Remember that my services, research and recommendations are always No Charge! If you know someone who travels send them my way. They will be treated just like family. If you have a group who wants to travel together let me know and you could travel for free. Traveling in a group is always more fun when you all share like interests! You know you will be taken care of. Keep your Cruisitude in check and most important is to always Travel Your Way!

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