Tauck Announces Godmothers for New ms Inspire Riverboat

Tauck’s Riverboat Cruise Directors Will Christen
ms Inspire In April; ms Savor Christening Set for June

NORWALK, CT (February 12, 2014)  Tauck will honor the skill and dedication of its cruise director team by having its four female Tauck Cruise Directors collectively serve as godmother to the company’s new ms Inspire riverboat, the first of two new Inspiration Class riverboats being launched by Tauck this year.  The ms Inspire will be christened on April 3rd in Basel, Switzerland.  Tauck’s second Inspiration Class ship, the ms Savor, will be christened on June 21st in Rudesheim, Germany, the company also announced today.

The four Tauck Cruise Directors who will share the christening honors are Bridget Ashton, Lynn Hardcastle, Mary Pierik and Eszter Pusztai.  Four male Tauck Cruise Directors, Tod Griswold, Scott Peters, Jeremy Shifferly and Steve Marchant, will also attend the ceremonies in supporting roles, and will likewise be honored for their efforts.  Marchant will stay with the ms Inspire following a subsequent three-day christening cruise and serve as the new ship’s cruise director as it officially enters service on April 7.

“Our Tauck Cruise Directors and Tauck Directors have collectively been the face of our company for 89 years,” said Tauck CEO Dan Mahar.  “They are the direct, critical link between Tauck and our guests, and they do an absolutely incredible job delivering the Tauck experience.  I know I speak for our entire staff when I say that we’re thrilled to be recognizing our Tauck Cruise Directors, and by extension, our global team of Tauck Directors, at the Inspire’s christening.”

Each Tauck ship has a Tauck Cruise Director aboard who is in charge of the overall guest experience, working closely with the ship’s maritime, hotel and restaurant staff and managing the team of three Tauck guides, or Tauck Directors, assigned to each riverboat.  The Tauck Directors in turn provide onboard commentary and service, assist in the delivery of the onboard guest experience and lead Tauck’s exclusive shore excursions. 

Tauck invests enormous care in the hiring, training, professional development and retention of its Tauck Cruise Directors and Tauck Directors, and its guide staff has in turn demonstrated great loyalty, historically averaging over a decade of tenure with the company.  For example, the eight Tauck Cruise Directors being honored at the ms Inspire christening represent a combined 87 years of service with Tauck. 

The new ms Inspire and ms Savor together comprise Tauck’s new Inspiration Class ships.  Both ships will be 443 feet long and each will have a capacity of just 130 guests to ensure a less-crowded, more relaxed and intimate ambiance.  By contrast, riverboats of the same size operated by other lines carry up to 190 guests.  And where Tauck staffs each riverboat with a Tauck Cruise Director and three Tauck Directors, ships in other riverboat lines are typically staffed by just one cruise director despite having up to 46% more passengers aboard.

Each of Tauck’s new Inspiration Class ships will have twenty-two 300 square foot suites furnished with two French balconies with floor-to-ceiling windows, pull-out couch, roomy walk-in closest with built-in drawers, and spacious bathroom with rain shower.  Along with the suites, the newbuilds will also have thirty-two 225 square foot cabins, plus an additional thirteen cabins ranging from 150 to 190 square feet.  In keeping with Tauck’s policy of welcoming solo travelers, four of the 150 square foot cabins are being set aside for guests traveling on their own.

Eight of the thirty-two 225 square foot cabins on each newbuild will be located on the lower (Emerald) deck, and feature an innovative “loft” design with a raised platform seating area.  Located against the ship’s hull/outer wall, each seating area will have a small table with two chairs, plus a raised ceiling that 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 will allow far more natural light to fill the cabin.

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.  Those interested in more information may contact their local travel professional, visit www.tauck.com, or call 800 468 2825.

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