Avalon Expands Fleet Sales Hit Record
Avalon Expands Fleet Sales Hit Record. Avalon Waterways will expand its European river cruise fleet to 12 ships next year, announcing plans for another luxury Suite Ship as its bookings in the Australian market reach an all-time record.
Having already announced the 64-cabin Avalon Artistry II to join the fleet in April next year, Avalon has now confirmed another new Suite Ship for 2013 with the launch of the 83-cabinAvalon Expression the following month. Both ships will be modeled on Europe’s first Suite Ship, the Avalon Panorama, which has been a sell-out success since its introduction last year. It will be joined this year by fellow Suite Ships Avalon Vista and Avalon Visionary which are scheduled for a double christening in May.
Designed with Australian travelers in mind, Avalon’s Suite Ships have revolutionised river cruise ship standards with two entire decks of all-suite accommodation. They offer 30 per cent more cabin space than the average competitor and feature wall-to-wall panoramic windows that draw back to transform each suite into an open-air balcony.
Avalon Waterways Managing Director Australasia Stewart Williams said the response to Avalon’s Suite Ship concept had been outstanding.
“Australia has become Avalon’s fastest growing market worldwide, thanks largely to the success of the Suite Ships,” Mr Williams said. “Our river cruise bookings in Australia are currently 40 per cent above this time last year and 2012 has already eclipsed all other sales records in this market.” Avalon Waterways already operates the most modern fleet of river cruise ships in Europe, with an average age of just under three years. The introduction of Avalon Artistry II andAvalon Expression in 2013 will give Avalon five Suite Ships and an overall European fleet of 12 luxury vessels.
I will be sailing on Avalon in the next few weeks, looking forward to reporting with lots of pictures, John Pond.