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-   -   ACL announces 5 more river cruise ships (http://www.steamboats.org/forum/river-talk-cruises/5674-acl-announces-5-more-river-cruise-ships.html)

Carmen 03-01-2017 03:11 AM

ACL announces 5 more river cruise ships
 
ACL announced 5 more river cruise ships in an interview with [URL="http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=7578"]CruiseCritic[/URL].

The ships won´t have a paddlewheel anymore but be more "modern". They will be wider than the current boats with a lenght of 345 ft. Capacity will be 200 passengers. Cabins will be larger than those on the current boats with more suites, single and adjoining cabins. Ships will feature elevators, numerous lounges including a computer room, an atrium.

The first ship is supposed to go into service in August 2018, the second six months later. No dates for the other three ones.

Carmen

Judy Patsch 03-01-2017 09:42 AM

And they feel they need to keep the DQ away????
 
Why on earth with those plans would anyone ever consider the Delta Queen to be a threat to their business? It can only be a matter of hubris such as is being displayed by another 'CEO' these days.

Bob Reynolds 03-01-2017 10:21 AM

You're absolutely right, Judy. Two completely different products.

Jim Reising 03-01-2017 10:55 AM

I'm going to play devil's advocate.....you're not going to like this......but why would the general, cruising public want to ride the DQ? In a previous forum I said that these lines have already done the market research...the public wants more spacious rooms, more elevators, more glitz, wifi, etc. Unless the DQ can charge significantly less, why would anyone want a bunk bed and a shower that you have to bend over in to wash your hair? Oh yes there are probably a couple of hundred of us who would ride the DQ if we could....my wife couldn't, no elevator......but is there enough of us to make the boat self sustaining? I really don't know.

Jim Blum 03-01-2017 11:46 AM

In following the Cruise Critic link to the ACL promo and then checking the 5 Highlight bullet points number 5 may give an hint to whom the DQ might appeal.

No 5 point is "No Sea Days. Ships Stop at Ports Every Day". Hopefully there are large groups of people who wish to see and experience the River and not be bused and dog trotted all day long to "points of interest".

Bob Reynolds 03-01-2017 12:52 PM

Amen, Capt. Jim. To me, "no sea days" is where I would say, "thanks, but no thanks".

Bob Reynolds 03-01-2017 01:01 PM

In addition to what Capt. Jim posted below, Jim, I would say this: Yes, the DQ might need some work to remain viable. An elevator? I think that would be fine. Yes, by all means get the showers fixed where yu don't have to bend over to wash your hair...a trip to the plumbing supply store solves that. Maybe combine some rooms to make some bigger ones? Maybe.... The DQ's pluses: Fewer shore stops, a real steamboat, make it truly "old fashioned" (and I'm not talking faux-19th century, which she AIN'T), with tasteful decorating and furniture, good food served pretty much as it always was, and the feeling of an old hotel in the mountains. Do old hotels still do well, in spite of their age and quirks? Yep. The key is marketing. Is the DELTA QUEEN for everyone? No, and neither are these new boats. I hope and think there's room for both. Let's get the exemption and see what the market will bear.

David Dewey 03-01-2017 06:53 PM

Bob mentions "Old Hotels,," well my family still has an old "Auto Court" with modern motel rooms (OK, they were built in 1968, but feature real beam ceilings with real 3/4" thick tongue and groove paneling--not plywood!), and modular units in the old "trailer park" area. If you read the Yelp! reviews, they range from "NEVER again!" to "I LOVE this place and stay often!" The original cabins are very much like the DQ, built in 1923, linoleum floors, fridge on the back porch, two burner hot plates, wooden drainboards, tin shower stalls. The resort does well, but my brother has had to modify the original metal bed-frames to take Queen-sized mattresses, making the room seem even smaller. Some folks love them, some folks think they should be burned to the ground. BTW, no phones, no TVs in the cabins; they are in the modern rooms and the manufactured housing units.
It's a matter of marketing; some folks like "vintage" others like "chic" and there were always be more folks looking for the "chic" than for the "Vintage." I don't have any market research to tell me how much demand there is, but I think if the "new folks" market the authentic period experience (granted, it may be a little glamorized) and the experience of being ON the river (no sea days? You're not on the 'friggin' sea!) that the boat will fill. Granted, we probably won't be able to afford the trips with our limited income, but there are many out there with the income who can.
It will be harder and harder to sell ANY cruises though as more of this "virtual reality" generation grows up--if it's not on their I-this-or-that, they're not interested.

David Dewey 03-01-2017 06:56 PM

PS, notice the new boats have no paddlewheels; guess that wasn't important anymore--and I'll bet no calliope either! (too noisy!)
I mentioned this to my wife, Linda, and she disdainfully dryly remarked, "That's exciting. . . ." (as in "NOT!"")

Judy Patsch 03-01-2017 10:49 PM

Not my point Jim
 
[QUOTE=Jim Reising;36339]I'm going to play devil's advocate.....you're not going to like this......
I know most people won't like the DQ - they'll prefer the new stuff which ACL is putting out. That's why I question why ACL feels they must continue to pour money into keeping the DQ off the market.


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