In 2002, three seasoned travel experts -- Rudi Schreiner, Kristin Karst and Jimmy Murphy -- founded AmaWaterways, then called Amadeus Waterways. “Ama” derives from the Latin word for “love,” and AmaWaterways’ mission is to give guests a superb river cruising experience, from ship designs that include multiple dining venues and staterooms with double balconies to enriching itineraries and attentive service. The company is headquartered in Calabasas, CA, in the U.S.
The ships of AmaWaterways operate along rivers in Europe, Africa and Asia. Here are a few of the brand’s distinctive features.
The AmaWaterways fleet features onboard spas and salons, bicycles for exploring ashore, complimentary Wi-Fi, panoramic views from restaurants and lounges and a choice of dining venues, such as The Chef’s Table. Sundecks provide 360-degree views, and some are even equipped with heated pools with swim-up bars.
Many staterooms and suites are outfitted with the line’s twin balcony concept, which means a room will have both a full-size, walk-out balcony and a French balcony with glass doors that open to a railing (but do not provide step-out access).
Contemporary designs feature plush linens and marble bathrooms, and in-room Entertainment-on-Demand systems provide first-run Hollywood films, TV shows and music. Connecting staterooms are available on the newest generation of ships.
AmaWaterways was the first river cruise line to be inducted into La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, the oldest and largest culinary society in the world. Onboard chefs create traditional Western dishes as well as local specialties; vegetarian and gluten-free options are available, too. The intimate Chef’s Table allows passengers to watch their multicourse meal being prepared and chat with the chef along the way.
AmaWaterways, which schedules a variety of wine-themed cruises, also was welcomed into the Connetablie de Guyenne, a prestigious wine brotherhood in France’s Bordeaux region. The line extends its immersive culinary experiences ashore; guests can sample macarons and chocolates at Les Halles market in Lyon, France, or visit a candy-making workshop in a Vietnamese village, for example.
A Variety of Included Shore Excursions
Guests can customize their activities and choose their own pace with gentle, regular, active and in some cases, late-riser options. AmaWaterways was the first river cruise company to include bicycles aboard its European fleet; today, each ship carries 25 complimentary bikes for those who want to pedal along riverside paths or through historic city centers.
On Special Interest Tours, passengers go off the beaten path -- perhaps discover the hidden gems of Vienna or learn about the tradition of German beer making at an old Nuremberg brewery. While you’re cruising, there are lectures, theme dinners, cooking demonstrations and regional performances that provide insight into the destination’s history, traditions and culture.
To get a feel for the AmaWaterways experience, check out the videos below.