Left to right: A priest joins Kristin Karst, Rudi Schreiner and Libbie Rice at AmaMora's christening ceremony (Image: AmaWaterways)
River cruise operator AmaWaterways christened the new AmaMora in Lahnstein, Germany on 18 July, just six days after inaugurating AmaMagna in Austria and three months after the launch of AmaDouro in Portugal.
Invited guests, media representatives, travel partners, local residents, dignitaries and Mayor of Lahnstein Adalbert Dornbusch joined the ‘Rhine Romanticism’ themed dockside ceremony, where every attendee was presented with a hand-made wine leaf and flower pin to wear. They listened to speeches, watched as a local priest blessed AmaMora and enjoyed a performance of traditional maritime songs by a male choir, as well as a series of 19th-century dances by a costumed dance group.
President of Ensemble Travel Group Libbie Rice served as godmother, officially naming AmaMora by breaking a champagne bottle against her hull in keeping with maritime tradition.
“I am so thrilled to be christening the beautiful AmaMora today,” said Rice. “‘Ama’ means love, and I can feel the love that has been put into this ship – from her breathtaking design and craftsmanship to her warm, thoughtful service, and of course, the meticulously planned itineraries she will sail through some of Europe’s most amazing destinations. I know all who sail on AmaMora will feel the same sense of homecoming I did, the moment they step onboard.”
Rice was chosen as godmother in recognition of AmaWaterways’ partnerships with the travel agent community.
“AmaWaterways owes a huge part of its success to the support and loyalty of the travel advisor community, and we are pleased to honour that long-standing collaboration by having Libbie christen our newest ship,” said Kristin Karst, co-founder of AmaWaterways. “Through her years of experience in the travel industry, she has gained a reputation as an astute, forward thinker and a role model for other young women taking on leadership roles in travel. We are thrilled to honour her and our invaluable relationship with Ensemble Travel Group by having her serve as godmother to the beautiful AmaMora.”
Designed as a sister to AmaLea and AmaKristina, the 156-guest AmaMora has 78 staterooms, most with AmaWaterways’ signature twin balconies; a main restaurant; Chef’s Table Restaurant, a coffee station; a fitness centre; and a sun deck with a heated pool, swim-up bar, loungers and a walking track. Guests will also benefit from massage and hair salon services, complimentary entertainment-on-demand in cabins, free high-speed wi-fi, and a wellness programme featuring group fitness classes led by a ‘Wellness Host’.
AmaMora will spend her maiden season offering seven-night voyages on the Rhine river between Amsterdam, Netherlands and Basel, Switzerland. Each cruise will include a scenic 40-mile voyage through the Rhine Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage site with terraced vineyards and more than 40 hilltop castles, some dating back to the Roman era. The ship will also sail ‘Christmas Markets’ itineraries from late November.
“This has truly been a record-breaking year for us, and we are very proud to welcome AmaMora to our wonderful fleet of ships that are built to meet the needs of today’s travellers who crave a luxurious and personalised vacation experience,” said Rudi Schreiner, co-founder of AmaWaterways. “With multiple dining venues, a well-equipped gym with a ‘Wellness Host’ and heated swimming pool with swim-up bar, AmaMora’s design reflects her most recent sister ships, AmaLea and AmaKristina, but her fresh, rich colour scheme is uniquely her own.”
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