On Thursday April 14th I was happy to attend the inauguration of CroisiEurope’s latest new vessel. The ELBE PRINCESSE was ordered a year ago and ready to leave the Saint-Nazaire shipyard on February 10th, bound for Berlin.The festivities took place in Tegel, Berlin. CroisiEurope’s CEO Christian Schmitter introduced godmother Ms Anke Rehlinger and godfather Mr Philippe Etienne, French Ambassador in Germany (represented by Mr Jean-Claude Tribolet). With their choice of godparents the company wanted to emphasis the friendly relationship between the company and the two countries. Father Matthias Brühe said a prayer in French and German and blessed the ship.
The ELBE PRINCESSE is CroisiEurope’s second paddlewheel powered ship (LOIRE PRINCESSE being the first one). The ship will sail between Berlin and Prague, on the Elbe and the Moldau, with daily interesting stops in between.
The small ship is 95m long and has a width of 10,5m. It has two decks and two paddles at the stern of the ship.
It counts 40 cabins all exterior with a modern, Scandinavian feel interior.
Following the good collaboration, a third paddlewheel driven ship has been ordered with the newbuilding team of Neopolia and Stirling Design International. This third ship will also have two paddle wheels and two pump jets (they give the ship a better manoeuvrability). The delivery is foreseen in 2018.
CroisiEurope is the leader in river cruising in Europe and has vessels in Europe, Russia, Asia, South Africa and North and South-America. The family-owned business celebrates this year its 40th birthday. With the addition of the ELBE PRINCESSE the company operates 44 ships.
More ships are expected: two new French canal barges will be delivered soon and next year five new ships are foreseen.