The celebrations mark the arrival of the company’s second ship in Portugal; Executives of AmaWaterways, valuable partners and the first godmother of the United Kingdom, Julia Bue-Said, meet in Porto for the christening.
AmaWaterways, represented by StarClass in our country, has today baptized its new river cruise, the AmaDouro, with a festive ceremony in Porto, Portugal. The baptism gave the final touch to the inaugural sailing of the AmaDouro, which started in Oporto and came back for this special event organized by AmaWaterways co-founders, Rudi Schreiner and Kristin Karst. The guest of honor, Executive Director of Advantage Travel and AmaRouro’s godmother, Julia Lo Bue-Said was accompanied by other respected partners in the travel industry, international media and other guests for the celebration.
«The arrival of each new boat is exciting for us at AmaWaterways, but we are particularly delighted to add AmaDouro to this spectacular region that we proudly helped introduce when the AmaVida sister ship was launched for the first time in 2013,» said Schreiner. «We are very happy that our friends and partners are joining us here today, as this 21st addition to our fleet marks the beginning of an exceptional year for our company.»
Following a long tradition associated with the baptisms of ships that originated more than 4,000 years ago, a priest blessed the ship and the crew, and Captain Pedro Sardo attended while the godmother Lo Bue-Said broke a bottle of champagne against the helmet of AmaDouro, which means good luck in the trips that come ahead.
«We are very happy that Julia has officially received this new addition to our family,» Karst said. «It is our way of celebrating the incredible growth and our strong commitment to the travel agent community in the UK, as we work together to attract more guests from around the world to this untouched region of Europe.»
Reflecting the family values of Amawaterways, Schreiner and Karst surprised their first British godmother, who was accompanied by her husband and younger son, with the arrival of their eldest son by plane. Guests joined the festivities that included speeches by Schreiner, Karst and Lo Bue-Said, lively local entertainment with folkloric dancers and fado singers, regionally inspired cocktails and a gala dinner.
«I am very proud to be the godmother of this incredible ship,» said Lo Bue-Said. «AmaDouro has really exceeded my expectations of river cruising, from the boat to the unparalleled guest service and shore excursions. Traveling through Portugal and welcoming this boat with my family has been an unforgettable experience, and I am honored to officially welcome AmaDouro to the extraordinary AmaWaterways fleet. »
The AmaDouro offers 51 spacious and elegantly designed staterooms, most with exterior balconies to enjoy beautiful views of hills and vineyards along the Douro river valley designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Additional amenities include a panoramic lounge for evening entertainment, a heated solarium pool, gymnasium, massage room and the company’s renowned cuisine in the main restaurant, which serves regionally inspired dishes and hand-selected wines.
Together with the sister ship AmaVida sailing between Oporto and Vega Terron, AmaDouro will have its headquarters in Porto and will offer seven round-trip nights on Douro cruises with a three-day terrestrial program before the cruise in Lisbon. AmaDouro is the first of three new boats that will be added to the AmaWaterways fleet this year. Other new boats making their debut include AmaMora, the sister ship of AmaLeal and AmaKristina, sailing the Rhine and the revolutionary AmaMagna on the Danube.