Tauck has revealed that the name of its new Douro River riverboat will be ms Andorinha. The vessel will operate three new itineraries in Portugal in 2020. ms Andorinha will have a capacity of just 84 guests, carrying fewer guests than any other vessel currently operated by a major line on the Douro.
“At Tauck, we measure success by the quality of the experience we provide our guests, and one of the best ways to ensure a warm, relaxing and engaging atmosphere on board is to avoid crowding too many guests into a limited space,” said Tauck CEO Dan Mahar.
Riverboats sailing the Douro average 80 metres in length, noted Mahar, and accommodate as many as 130 passengers. “That’s 55% more guests in the same space, and you just can’t deliver the same level [of] experience or ambiance with those kinds of numbers.”
Though the ms Andorinha will have far fewer guests than other ships, she will still have more director-level personnel to ensure Tauck’s guests enjoy the highest levels of care and service. As on Tauck riverboats fleet-wide, the newbuild will be staffed by a Tauck Cruise Director and three Tauck Director guides.
Mahar hinted that the ms Andorinha will also boast a number of unique design features to make her perfectly suited to cruising the Douro.
“The Douro is a very different river, and so we’ve been consciously deliberate with the ship’s design,” said Mahar. “We won’t be the first company to operate on the Douro when we launch next year, but in terms of infrastructure, we’re excited to have some surprises in store that will truly differentiate us.”
The new ship will have a crew of 36, and will measure 80.1 metres in length with a beam of 11.5 metres. Guests will be accommodated in 42 cabins, including 12 91.4-square-metre suites on the upper Diamond Deck, and 20 68.6-square-metre staterooms primarily on the vessel’s Ruby or mid-level deck. The remaining accommodations – six 61-square-metre cabins and four 45.7-square-metre cabins – will be on the lower or Emerald Deck.
ms Andorinha will also feature a Panorama Lounge, Compass Rose restaurant for fine dining and a second dining venue, Arthur’s (named for company chairman Arthur Tauck Jr.), serving more casual fare.
Itinerary details and pricing will be announced later this year.