Redcliffe Pier

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

THE AMERICAN QUEEN STEAMBOAT

In November we visited USA and part of our trip included a cruise on the American Queen Steamboat down the Mississippi from Memphis to New Orleans. We checked in at the Sheraton Hotel  for the cruise and we were able to board at 3:00pm. Kathy, Rob, Bill and I caught a bus to the wharf and excitedly walked over the gangway. It was fun finding our cabins and our way around the boat. We were disappointed to find that our cabins were not near each other even though we asked for adjoining cabins and we were allocated 438 and 439. However, the even numbers were on one side of the boat and the odd numbers were on the other side. Oh well, not a problem. 
The American Queen is said to be the largest river steamboat ever built. She was built in 1995 and is a six-deck recreation of a classic Mississippi riverboat. She has 222 cabins for a capacity of 436 guests and a crew of 160. She is 127m long and 27 metres wide. It has a steam engine to drive the paddlewheel. There is a Front Porch cafe serving food all day and the J M White Dining Room where guests dine nightly in two shifts. There is a River Grill & Bar and a Grand Saloon for evening entertainment as well as lounges, reading rooms, spa and gym. It carries on the tradition of the elegant 19th century steamboat travel.
Our cabin opened onto the deck where there were chairs for us to lounge in, however the weather wasn't the best at first. Cold and wet.
 The cabin was quite roomy for a river cruise boat.
 The problem was that the walls were not sound proof and we could hear the neighbours talking and their TV. We had to buy earplugs so we could sleep.
The bathroom was much bigger than on other river boats I have been on.

 Bill tickled the ivories of the grand piano in the area outside the purser's office. Behind him is the shop.

The lounge was a place where we tried to use the free WiFi but it was a joke. It was so slow and intermittent that it was almost impossible to use. So my blogging came to a halt.

 There was a ladies and a separate gents reading room but no one took any notice of the signs and both sexes sat in both rooms. I liked the gents room because it had puzzles and games in it.

The dining room was very nice. The food was sensational and the staff very pleasant, friendly and helpful.

After dinner we would go to the Grand saloon to see a show. The shows were quite entertaining.

 Bill went to see the Pilot House

And the engine room where he and Rob had a chat to the engineer who explained that the controls were all computerised. He just sat and watched a monitor.

So there is no need of a wheel anymore. However, there is one in the Chart Room but its only for show. The Chart Room had a staff member called a Riverlorian who could tell you anything you wanted to know about the boat and the river.

26 comments:

  1. wow. it really is beautiful and grand! sorry about the thin walls, though. :)

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  2. Apart from the cabin noise issue, it appears to be an excellent way to travel.

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  3. Certainly looks VERY grand. Pity about the thin walls, being built in 1995 one would have thought that TV noises would have been taken into consideration?
    William !!!! I never knew that you were a modern day Chopin or Liszt. That grand certainly suits you.
    If that dining room is the salon of epicurean delights, it is no wonder the food was of the highest standard and presentation.
    No MacDonalds on that magnificent river boat!
    Cheers
    Colin

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  4. It's too bad that the cabins didn't have better sound-proofing, but this does look like a very elegant riverboat. The Wi-Fi was a bummer, but then they didn't have such a thing during the era of grand Mississippi riverboats.

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  5. What an elegant boat. I love the longe areas. There isn't really any excuse for the lack of sound proofing between rooms. They should fix it or remove the TV's!

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  6. Look good and sounds like fun Diane. Oh gosh, annoying the noise from next cabins especially if you want to go to bed earlier than your neighbour.
    Happy New Year to you both.

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  7. Wow ! what a wonderful boat and looking at your photos I am jealous ! That must have been something very special. I saw some steam boats on the Mississippi but from far only !

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  8. Lovely to be taken on a tour. I am unlikely to ever do it myself. When I saw the Missisippi I was surprised at how narrow it was. I guess I expected more for such a mighty river.

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  9. Shame about the soundproofing, or lack thereof! What a beauty though Diane! I enjoyed the tour very much of this Queen of the steamboats. Good to hear the food was sensational, one can forgive anything if the tucker is good. :)

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  10. I've been on a bit smaller Mississippi riverboats but they are mostly musty and have seen better days. This one is elegant and grand! I'm glad you enjoyed it and I hope the scenery was as nice as the food.

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  11. That looks like a dream to cruise on - much more interesting than the cruise ships of today!

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  12. The ship looks beautiful from the inside. I only had seen it in front of the hotel from the outside. It looks really from a past time. Had no iidea it was so big and could hav so much passengers.

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  13. she is a beautiful boat... all the rooms are lovely..

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  14. Sounds interesting and it looks like a beautiful boat

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  15. You do the most interesting things Diane ..., definitely Adventure before Dementia.
    Wishing you & Bill a wonderful 2015 with lots of new adventures along the way.

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  16. Looks like the weather improved some along the way. The American Queen looks like a lovely old riverboat.

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  17. The American Queen is a beautiful boat and what a fun cruise..Awesome photos, Diane! Happy New Year to you and your family!

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  18. What a lovely boat! Very impressive. Happy New Year! :-)

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  19. Apart from the sound proofing and the iffy weather, it looked like a lovely boat. Happy New Year!

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  20. Wow that is quite a steamboat. I would also have found it very annoying though to hear your neighbours talking. After our Mediterranean cruise last year it is interesting to see what other ships are like. Happy New Year t'other Diane

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  21. Great to see you and Bill are acting on the title of your blog! Fascinating shots. Hope Bill's health improves and wishing you both a wonderful and adventurous 2015.

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  22. So fun, worth the problems ....(as long as you could buy the earplugs). The separate reading room thing is hilarious. I assume they are trying to make it look like it was historically,.

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  23. Oh Diane - that looks so much fun (except for the bit about being able to hear your neighbours)...thanks for taking all the photos. I loved the dining room and the lounges.

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  24. I was so looking forward to seeing your photos of the wonderful trip! Then I got very busy in the two months prior to Christmas making blankets for the homeless vets and other items for a Children's Home, and then Christmas was very busy unto itself, and I am now so far behind, catching up with my comments! This looks so wonderful! I would love to do this some time! What fun you must have had(aside from the thin walls!) If I go, I will remember to take some ear plugs! :-)

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