Tauck Christens New Inspire


Members of the Tauck family, Tauck executives, the company’s board of directors, special guests and local dignitaries gathered dockside in Basel, Switzerland, April 3 to christen Tauck’s newest riverboat, the ms Inspire.

Tauck Cruise Director Lynn Hardcastle offered a traditional blessing, and the ship officially entered service moments later when Tauck Cruise Director Bridget Ashton cut a ceremonial ribbon to send a bottle of Moët & Chandon champagne crashing against the ship’s hull.

Joining Hardcastle and Ashton as honourary godmothers to the Inspire were Tauck Cruise Director colleagues Mary Pierik and Eszter Pusztai. Following an onboard reception, the Inspire departed on a celebratory two-night cruise along the Rhine.

“Today is another important step in the evolution of Tauck River Cruising,” observed Tauck CEO Dan Mahar. “Not only are we welcoming a new vessel into the Tauck fleet, we’re also celebrating the debut of an entirely new class of Tauck riverboat.”

The Inspire is the first of two new Inspiration Class ships that will launch this year, joining Tauck’s four award-winning Jewel Class vessels. The Inspire’s sister-ship, the ms Savor, will launch in June.

The Inspire (and the Savor) feature a second onboard restaurant offering lighter and traditional American fare to complement the ship’s more formal main dining room. Named “Arthur’s” in honour of company chairman Arthur Tauck, Jr., the café-like restaurant is located aft on the Diamond Deck where it will feature selections prepared in its own full-service kitchen.

Also new are eight “loft” cabins located on the lower (Emerald) deck of the Inspire and Savor. On other European riverboats the lower-level cabins are small, and because they’re mostly below the ships’ waterlines, they’re limited to modest, sealed windows at eye level that admit minimal sunlight and zero fresh air. Tauck’s 20-square-metre loft cabins, however, have a raised platform seating area located against the ships’ hull/outer wall with a correspondingly higher ceiling immediately above. The higher ceiling in turn allows the use of a much taller window than can normally be incorporated into lower-level cabins. The middle portion of this window can be opened electronically for fresh air, and being taller, the window allows far more natural light to fill the cabin.

The two new Inspiration Class ships are 133 metres long, and each will have 22 27-square-metre suites furnished with two French balconies with floor-to-ceiling windows, pull-out couch, roomy walk-in closets with built-in drawers, and spacious bathroom with rain shower. Along with the suites, the newbuilds have 32 20-square-metre cabins, plus an additional 13 cabins ranging from 13.5 to 17 square metres. In keeping with Tauck’s policy of welcoming solo travellers, four of the 13.5-square-metre cabins are being set aside for guests travelling on their own.

In addition to launching its two new ships, Tauck is also launching four new river cruise itineraries this year, including its first ever on the River Seine in France.