Shipyard De Hoop has recently delivered their fifteenth river cruise vessel to Lüftner Cruises. Named Amadeus Queen, the new vessel follows the award-winning model of the Amadeus Silver ships, but offers further innovative developments. For this ship, the yard has decided a completely new re-engineering, based on the lessons learned from the previous vessels. This new flagship of Austria’s river cruise specialist will continue to advance Lüftner’s goal - to provide high quality and highly comfortable river cruises in Europe.
Following a successful launch on 27th December last year and prosperous river trials on the 12th of March 2018, the vessel was handed over to Lüftner on March 23rd. With the ship’s supplies on-board, Amadeus Queen began her maiden voyage to Amsterdam, where she will be formally delivered during a name giving ceremony on the 4th of April 2018. The vessel will go into service immediately after the ceremony and will operate for the entire season in Europe - mainly on the rivers Rhine, Main and Danube, along with other Dutch and Belgian Waterways.
With current rapidly changing markets becoming ever more demanding and competitive, and new designs and features coming hot on each other’s heels, ship number fifteen demanded some innovative thinking. The popular concept of spaciousness, sophisticated design and first-class interior fixtures and fittings, for which the Amadeus fleet of ships are renowned, has been maintained; Amadeus Queen features an Art-Line interior by Frank Pieterse, characterised by the use of glossy white, many round shapes and darker coloured woods in combination light and colourful fabrics.
Amadeus Queen offers its 162 passengers a total of 81 cabins. The 69 enlarged standard cabins feature French balconies (panoramic window fronts, which can be automatically lowered) and en-suite, luxurious king-size bathrooms with separate toilet and shower. The 12 larger luxury suites also boast an accessible exterior balcony with seating and large panoramic windows.
Cabins (specifically bathrooms) became larger, whilst at the same time the vessel’s principle particulars - due to restrictions of the sailing routes - could not be increased. Characteristic for this vessel is the new approach to public areas, immediately noticed when guests come aboard in the newly designed all-glass entrance-atrium, containing the reception desk on Strauss deck and the centrally placed grand staircase as well as a separate travel desk.
This disruption of the structural longitudinal stiffness (usually supported by steel, now it is mostly glass) was one of the challenges the De Hoop team successfully overcame. The aft Mozart deck is well furnished, with the full-width aft Amadeus club in luxury yacht-club style which includes a large indoor pool-area.
This transversely placed pool is one of the new on-board highlights, featuring two sliding roof-parts that can be opened in fine weather. In the evenings, this combined area can be converted to accommodate informative functions or cinema showings. The weight increase, caused by the redeveloped luxury aft area was a specific challenge, as the aft underwater ship does not provide much buoyancy. As such, the engine room also had to be scrutinised and completely reengineered.
The forward area of this deck is appointed with the Panorama bar, a select number of smaller dining or lounging areas and the River terrace on the far end. This area, designated for ‘fine dining in free air’, is shielded against wind by transparent screens, and has a sun awning overhead. With this design, De Hoop moved away from the large multi-functional open space (on some vessels with movable partition walls), and turned it into smaller, more intimate, dedicated hospitality/catering areas.
The Amadeus Queen features an ergonomically designed hull shape, combined with a straightforward propulsion system, like on the Silver series. The layout of the propulsion system and aft hull design, however, were redefined to compensate for the addition of the pool. This resulted in an upgraded, wellbalanced and matched engine room layout, allowing for an even higher maximum cruise speed with the same machinery.
Due to the higher efficiency, lower fuel consumption and reduced exhaust emission levels were accomplished. As a result, using the two Caterpillar 3508 main engines, rated at 783 kW @ 1600 RPM, the ship can achieve a service speed of 22 km/hr. The engines directly drive two Veth Z-drives with contra-rotating propellers. These main thrusters are recessed, limiting the minimum operational draught to only 1.52 metres and allowing the vessel to cruise most European rivers where the water depths are often critical.
In order to isolate vibrations from the propulsion units, a double hardwearing flexible mounting system has been applied. On both sides, the azimuthing thrusters are mounted on separated bottom sections, which are resiliently integrated in a frame of the actual ship’s bottom. Furthermore, the main engines are mounted on double vibration dampers and paired to the thruster units through flexible couplings. This so-called ‘boat-in-boat’ solution has the effect of reducing the sound levels in the public spaces and guest cabins.
To further reduce the sound and vibrations in the Amadeus-Club and pool above, another innovation was introduced: To lower the impact of propeller blade impulses to the hull, an air curtain buffer was installed - by blowing air in between the propeller and hull, the pressure pulses are not transmitted to the hull. Sustainability was an imperative issue when this vessel was being (re)designed and then built at the ‘De Hoop’ shipyard.
Absolute priority was given to achieving an optimum reduction in the ship’s energy consumption and air pollution. Lüftner and De Hoop’s sustainability efforts and resource-management measures on board, are recognised continuously by authorised bodies. To ensure Amadeus Queen will also meet the stringent requirements, many other additional precautions have been taken.
Improvements have also been made on the climate control systems as well as the waste management systems for sewage and galley. Although based on the proven Amadeus Silver design, Amadeus Queen is another huge step forward in the river cruise world.
Principal particulars Length, over all : 135.00m Beam, over all : 11.45m Beam, moulded : 11.10m Depth : 3.25m Draught, operational : 1.52m Draught, ballast : 2.15m Air draught (@ T = 2.15m) : 5.85m Propulsion power : 2x 783kW @ 16 RPM Bow thruster power : 350kW Speed, max : 22 km/hr
Passengers : 162 persons in 81 suites (of six different sizes/categories)
Crew : 52 persons in 26 twin-berth cabins : 4 persons in 4 single-berth cabins
ABOUT LUȌFTNER CRUISES
Lüftner Cruises rank amongst the best-known operators of river cruises on European waterways. Founded over 30 years ago, the company currently own and operate ten ships, and, with its elegant Amadeus fleet, offer exclusive river cruises on Europe’s most important and picturesque waterways: along Dutch and Belgian rivers, the French Rhône and Saône, and up and down the Rhine, Main, Moselle and Danube.
ABOUT SHIPYARD DE HOOP
Shipyard De Hoop is a successful Dutch designer, engineer and builder of custom-built vessels. Each and every ship built is unique, and built in-house, with customisation exceeding standard processes. De Hoop has a positive approach to trends and developments in the industry, allowing them to quickly embrace change, and even anticipate future developments. Shipyard De Hoop is a medium-sized shipyard headquartered in Lobith, in the east of the country, with 150 to 300 workers depending on the workload.
The yard offers slipway facilities for vessels up to 200 metres length, and has a combined quay length of 450 metres locally - and a further 200m in the Rotterdam harbour area - available for outfitting. Shipyard De Hoop has an impressive track record in designing and constructing custom-built ships. This comprises both seagoing vessels and inland vessels, including river cruise vessels and passenger vessels, as well as high-end work and accommodation vessels for the offshore industry and renewables markets. Having their own design and engineering department, together with all other disciplines (not only hull building but also prefabrication, carpentry/interior manufacturing, installation facilities, piping, etc.) allows them to build a complete ‘turn-key’ ship. The company is characterised by its flexibility and quality, whilst simultaneously offering fast delivery dates. Shipyard De Hoop will celebrate its 130th anniversary with the turn of the year from 2018 to 2019.