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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2007
My wife and I (ages 65, 67) just returned from a fantastic New England cruise aboard the American Spirit. The food and snacks were fabulous as was the ports Our Nantucket stop was heavenly as was all of our stops. The crew is so personal ... Read More
My wife and I (ages 65, 67) just returned from a fantastic New England cruise aboard the American Spirit. The food and snacks were fabulous as was the ports Our Nantucket stop was heavenly as was all of our stops. The crew is so personal and great they make sure everyone is happy. I've never seen passengers smiling so much, it Was wonderful. You travel so close to the ports, you really get a feel for the local histories. In New Bedford (a tiny port, right?) NO WAY! We visited their WhalingMuseum (great) A couple local bars (really great), then they had a local jazz duo come aboard and Play during cocktails. My wife made requests and we even bought their CD. If you've never cruise a smaller ship I cannot recommend this enough. It was fun Romantic and very relaxing. You could choose to be active or just lay back. Cruise director Jackie was so accommodating I swear she never sleeps We are booking another cruise next year with American Cruise Lines!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2013
First, let me say that this was our third cruise on the American Star, and that we have already booked two more with American Cruise Lines--on the Mississippi and then in Maine. Previously we toured the New England Islands and the ... Read More
First, let me say that this was our third cruise on the American Star, and that we have already booked two more with American Cruise Lines--on the Mississippi and then in Maine. Previously we toured the New England Islands and the Intracoastal waterway from South Carolina to Florida. Although we have traveled a lot on Regent and Seabourn ships,, the far more casual atmosphere of ACL is very appealing. The food is quite good, though admittedly the selection is far more limited than on the ocean-going ships, and the service is not as professional (these are, after all, young American kids). But there's something rather nice about having them around instead of waiters who dress more formally than the guests. And the fact that there are only 100 passengers means that the staff actually knows your name in short order (the fact that you wear name tags does help everyone become acquainted in short order). Also, there is a cocktail hour every evening aboard ACL vessels, with good brands being poured, and rather freely. Furthermore, although you can order half portions at all meals, food is constantly being handed to you--cookies in the morning, if you are aboard, hors d'oeuvres at cocktail time, and then popcorn and root beer floats or sundaes in the evening with some sort of fairly casual entertainment brought aboard from a nearby town. Oh, and, of course, you are free to bring your own alcohol aboard with you as well. Now let me say something about the cruise itself. The Hudson is a very interesting river for a couple of reasons: its history, including the long-term efforts to clean it from the pollution generated by chemical dumping by corporations at a time no one was much aware of its carcinogenic potential, and the fact that the river is tidal, which means that the water flows both north and south. The foliage was gorgeous, though more subdued than one would find in the Berkshires or Vermont. One stop was Olana, the home of one of the Hudson River School painters, Frederick Church, and one can easily see why he was drawn to the location. Others stops were Albany (much more interesting a city than we had anticipated, probably because we had a most enthusiastic and knowledgeable guide, West Point and Hyde Park, which need no comments, since they stand on their own as interesting destinations, Kingston, which was made more enjoyable because it is the town where the ship's resident expert, Sandy Balla, actually lives, and tours of the homes of both robber baron Jay Gould and Washington Irving near Sleepy Hollow. The contrast between the ostentation of Mr. Gould and homey feel of the residence of Ichabod Crane's creator was worth the visit. All in all, the trip was worth every penny and the fact that we live within driving distance means that we shall definitely return on our own. The only negatives we have to say about our experience is that driving to Chelsea Pier in Manhattan is not exactly a pleasant thing to do, but mitigated by the fact that parking is available very close to the pier. The other is that mobility is an issue to take into consideration for some folks, since there are distances to walk to some of the sites, and some stairs to climb. Those of us without that issue also had to be patient getting on and especially off buses (some were not) as those who were physically challenged slowly made their way down the aisle. Not everyone was elderly, but some were. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2014
As members of the Eagle Society, we are dedicated to cruising on American Cruise Lines. The Hudson River Fall Foliage Cruise was our most recent and 4th cruise with American Cruise Lines. We thoroughly enjoy each cruise so we continue to ... Read More
As members of the Eagle Society, we are dedicated to cruising on American Cruise Lines. The Hudson River Fall Foliage Cruise was our most recent and 4th cruise with American Cruise Lines. We thoroughly enjoy each cruise so we continue to explore their further offerings. Our next adventure will be the Historic South and Golden Isles Cruise. There are many reasons why we continue to cruise with American. The number one reason is that we love the small ship experience. There are always so many interesting people on board. Because the number of passengers is limited, one has an opportunity to meet everyone. The cabins are spacious and very comfortable. The service staff is most accommodating and the delicious gourmet cuisine is a reflection of the area in which we sail. The ports of call are always so interesting. The cruise is enhanced by the presence of on board historians to further the educational experience both culturally and historically. Bill Ewen further complimented our most recent trip with his in depth lectures of the area. We always find our trips with American Cruise Lines to be first rate and will continue to enjoy their hospitality. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2014
Marvelous cruise overall. Weather was perfect. Crew was exemplary. Ports were well chosen and of great interest for the most part. Highlights were West Point, Albany and Hyde Park. The Independence is beautifully designed, with ample ... Read More
Marvelous cruise overall. Weather was perfect. Crew was exemplary. Ports were well chosen and of great interest for the most part. Highlights were West Point, Albany and Hyde Park. The Independence is beautifully designed, with ample public rooms. Public restroom facilities were minimal to say the least. Food was very good, as were the choices offered. Soups were outstanding. Not everyone is used to a hot meal for lunch every day. While salads are a fair substitute for many people, it would be a great improvement if a sandwich could also be offered at lunch time.. Embarkation pier (61) was not as advertised (59), creating much confusion for the taxi driver. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2014
We had been on the Independence two years before going up the Maine coast. We enjoyed it so much that we signed up for the Hudson River cruise (and also have another planned for 2015 down the Mississippi). Before our trip up the Hudson we ... Read More
We had been on the Independence two years before going up the Maine coast. We enjoyed it so much that we signed up for the Hudson River cruise (and also have another planned for 2015 down the Mississippi). Before our trip up the Hudson we stayed at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square and saw two Broadway shows. On Sunday morning a short taxi ride took us to the American Cruise Line ship, the Independence. I cannot say enough about the cruise. Our room was larger than on most large cruise ships, the room service was always great. The food was excellent (on both cruises). Because the ship is staffed with young people who multi-task, you have them serving your breakfast bright and early (or later if you want), and then you see them in the halls cleaning rooms and halls! They are ALWAYS pleasant and fun to get to know. And the do work very hard. Lunch and dinner are always a pleasure to look forward to. You pick your food choices for that day's meals at breakfast but if you change your mind - it is not a problem. There are educational talks daily regarding the shoreline and the state we are in plus some nightly local entertainment. All in all, it has just the right amount of free times vs. shore excursions vs. entertainment. A very relaxing and rewarding trip. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was the fourth cruise I have taken with ACL and I have enjoyed all of them. I prefer the smaller ships to the larger ones that I have sailed with before. I also appreciate the All American approach by the cruise line. It is so much ... Read More
This was the fourth cruise I have taken with ACL and I have enjoyed all of them. I prefer the smaller ships to the larger ones that I have sailed with before. I also appreciate the All American approach by the cruise line. It is so much better to be able to have a real conversation with staff who can speak English. As a former professor I enjoyed talking to the university students who comprised most of the crew - a novel idea by the cruise line. I also like paying one tip at the end of the cruise instead of having to pay every staff member. The crew were most pleasant and helpful and seemed to enjoy what they were doing. The Historian on this cruise was outstanding and I am hoping he will be on the next cruise that I am taking. The shore excursions were very enjoyable and it is so much better to go with a small group than with 3,000 or more fellow passengers. Transportation to and from the excursions was well planned and for the most part included knowledgeable guides from the local area. Embarkation and disembarkation procedures are well planned and accommodate most needs. The tour director even said good bye to us when we left at 6:00 a.m. and a crew member accompanied us the our airport transportation and helped with our baggage. Many of the passengers are senior citizens and I appreciated the fact that our special needs were met by helpful crew members. I liked the slower pace of the cruise and the recognition of us as important members of society who still like to travel Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
When we first got on the ship, I thought, "This must be an old ship that they retrofitted". There were duct tape repairs in the dining room. The cabin looked like something out of the 1970s. Then the captain told us it had been ... Read More
When we first got on the ship, I thought, "This must be an old ship that they retrofitted". There were duct tape repairs in the dining room. The cabin looked like something out of the 1970s. Then the captain told us it had been built in 2010. Wha? When we arrived at Chelsea piers, we went where we were told to go. Nothing. We had to get out & ask. They told us to go to another pier. Nothing. Finally, we found someone with an ACL shirt, and he said, "No, you need to go to Pier XX". Did I mention it was, windy, cold, and my father-in-law is disabled? Did I mention that the porter almost dumped all of our luggage into the river on the very narrow gangway to the ship? Ugh. When we got to the ship, they had to transfer my FIL to a smaller wheelchair. I said "Are they making you move to another chair?" The captain turned and snapped at me, "Do you have a better idea?" I was totally shocked. Great way to start the cruise with the captain yelling at me. I didn't know that the gangway was too narrow for his wheelchair. Snapping at me was uncalled for. We got there at the time we were told to be there, and then staff told us we were way too early. The rooms weren't ready (I get it) so we sat in the lounge, which was filled with sofas. Does anyone know how difficult it is for elderly people to get up and down from a sofa? Some of the dining staff were great, helping my FIL when he fell out of his chair ... others, not so much. I saw unwashed hair, sloppy clothes, and one actually said, when we told him our food was cold, "Hey, I just deliver the food!" and did nothing to remedy the situation. The food was sub-cafeteria quality (and I use the word "quality" loosely). We kept seeing the same thing over and over in one shape or form. One of our excursions was riding on a bus for 2 hours, going around in circles. The stop at a "farm" to have apple cider was at a grocery store. The cruise director (after I realized there was one!) was shy and Missing in Action. The guest speaker was the only bright spot on the cruise, and I could tell she felt bad and was trying to make up for the cruise line's weaknesses. Information was not disseminated at all ... It was awful, awful, awful. One cruiser, who had been on the ship before, said "If this had been my first cruise I never would have come again." I can't say enough how I want those 7 days back again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
There is so much history on our rivers and you can only see such beauty when cruising. American Cruise Lines is a wonderful company to cruise these rivers with. The Staff is friendly and knowledgeable. Rooms are comfortable and clean. ... Read More
There is so much history on our rivers and you can only see such beauty when cruising. American Cruise Lines is a wonderful company to cruise these rivers with. The Staff is friendly and knowledgeable. Rooms are comfortable and clean. The cuisine was exceptional. They took great care in the details of our cruise. Because it is not a LARGE ship, and the passenger list is small compared to larger ship cruise companies, you have a chance to meet and mingle with amazing passengers from all over. You get to know them and even become friends when the cruise is over. Passengers that would be most like you because they chose the same trip as you did. Its intimate, and personal, the staff learns quickly your wants and needs and will make every effort to make your trip a memorable one. They often call you by name, and take time to ask you how your day was. Its a good choice if you want a stress free cruise, without all the noise and chaos of larger ship. Starting with your info packette, to your arrival at port, and ending with your arrangements made for you to the airport, this cruise is for you. If you want your meals well planned and visually appealing, and flavorful, dine with American. We met many couples who were on their 4 or 5th cruise, and even some who are solo travelers on their 7th and 8th trip with American! You are well taken care of. This is a wonderful experience for those of us who are older than 55. We truly enjoyed our 1st and recently, our 2nd cruise with American. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We chose this cruise to view the fall foliage and to tour the historic sites along the Hudson River Valley. We were not disappointed on either counts. I'm glad we packed heavy raincoats for this time of the year, as the weather was ... Read More
We chose this cruise to view the fall foliage and to tour the historic sites along the Hudson River Valley. We were not disappointed on either counts. I'm glad we packed heavy raincoats for this time of the year, as the weather was always windy and it rained 2 days and even snowed one morning. River cruising means very little motion, therefore no one was ever sea sick. There were only 80 passengers on board, so the ratio of service persons to passengers was excellent. All drinks were included in the fare and happy hour was held each night with wine/beer provided at lunch and dinner. If you're looking for a fast paced, party atmosphere, this is NOT the cruise for you. It is slow paced and relaxing, perfect for retreating from a hectic paced life. I would say the average age of the passengers was upper 60s. The ship has multiple areas for social gatherings and playing games (pack your playing cards). If you're sending post cards, they are mailed every day and you do NOT need stamps. The ship had reading material for our destinations and some lectures; but it would have been helpful if we had studied up a bit prior to the cruise. All of the cabins are incredibly spacious, larger than our master suite at home. Cabins do NOT have safes, so plan accordingly, though we felt secure the entire time on board. All cabins have TV/cable service and DVD players. The ship's library had a limited selection of DVDs; we watched old John Wayne movies in our room each night after the social hour of pleasant, entertainment (geared for the age group on board). For our next cruise, we'll pack a few of our favorite DVDs. We would take this cruise again, but perhaps go a week earlier, though being able to predict peak leaf time is difficult since weather is unpredictable. However, the farther we traveled up river, the more variety and vivid the leaves became. The best part of the cruise was the friendliness of the crew and service personnel. Since the amount of passengers is relatively small, we were able to get to know many of the passengers who were happy to be traveling. The relaxing atmosphere on board, made for great fellowship. I did not see one passenger complain or whine. We also made some life long friends aboard and are planning future trips with them. As with any experience, you get out of it what you are willing to put into it. The food was superior and the chef accommodated special needs or requests whenever able. Gratuities are included in the fare, so that made it convenient. Travel to and from the Manhattan port was expensive and traffic is always congested; try to share taxis whenever possible and avoid LaGuardia which is undergoing some pretty extensive construction for all gates and parking. The internet connections were often sketchy, but if you're cruising, you need to unplug anyway. There are computers with printers on board for accessing your plane tickets and pre printing boarding passes. Be sure to include an overnight bag for your last night on board, it will make luggage transfer go very smoothly. Have a great time, sit back, and enjoy the ride. You'll return with a lowered blood pressure and a few extra joyfully gained pounds, and hopefully some wonderful new friends! Autumn will become your favorite season! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2016
My husband and I love American Cruise Lines, top to bottom. The entire staff is top-notched, providing excellent service while always being pleasant and attentive. This includes not only the captain, first mate, hotel manager, and ... Read More
My husband and I love American Cruise Lines, top to bottom. The entire staff is top-notched, providing excellent service while always being pleasant and attentive. This includes not only the captain, first mate, hotel manager, and full-time employees, but also the deck hands and the waitstaff/stewards. Everyone aims to please. Next, the ship is immaculate inside and out. The cabin is comfortable and fully furnished. The common areas provide amble seating and stylish decor. All areas are well-lit and welcoming. Dining on ACL is like dining in a five star restaurant. The menu is varied, with options to suit everyone. The offerings are contemporary and tastefully presented. Every meal is delicious and satisfying. We were never disappointed. The activities and shore excursions included an adequate variety, including walking tours, bus tours, and plenty of local flavor. Both Austin, the Cruise Director, and Sandy Balla, the onboard historian, interjected humor and patience in all their activities. Their insight and knowledge greatly improved the tours and onboard activities. Most of the evening guest performers were great, although some were clearly a cut above others. Finally, this was our fifth ACL vacation, and we've already booked another for next year. I'm sure a could write more, but this will do. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary--that is the Hudson, NYC, Hyde Park, fall foliage Very well organized; ship staff wonderful; small passenger size was important; ample time to connect with friends. We did do the NYC pre-cruise ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary--that is the Hudson, NYC, Hyde Park, fall foliage Very well organized; ship staff wonderful; small passenger size was important; ample time to connect with friends. We did do the NYC pre-cruise tour; it covered the hi points including One World Trade Center w/well informed guide. Cabin was small, but that size was expected; chose the veranda room and that made all the difference; partitions on veranda were removed so visiting and sailing w/friends was enhanced. The dining service was always great; wines available, nice selection of entrees and appetizers and desserts; loved that 1/2 portions were available. During the evening entertainment, great snacks served. Staff always accommodating and service w/a smile. Embarking was smooth and efficient; disembarking went well until bus to airport. Bus driver refused to drive to all terminals; left passengers hauling bags and finding other ways to get to correct terminal. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
We were looking for a small ship experience and we found it. We travelled with friends who we have cruised with previously on one of the large cruise lines. We had made our own travel arrangements to and from New York City in advance. ... Read More
We were looking for a small ship experience and we found it. We travelled with friends who we have cruised with previously on one of the large cruise lines. We had made our own travel arrangements to and from New York City in advance. Embarkation and disembarkation were well organized and went smoothly. The cruise was well run, the ship is well maintained and extremely clean. Our cabin was more than adequate with space for all our gear. The food service was pure gourmet. Menu choices were provided each morning at breakfast for the day but you were not held to your choices if there was a change of mind. Entertainment and on board activities were adequate with Happy Hour being a delight. There was an on board lecturer who made a few historic blunders but to my knowledge no one called her on them. She came off as an absent minded professor type. We selected a few of the provided excursions but elected to go out on our own at a few ports. All in all it was a great trip. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
We have cruised with the American Cruise Line before and like the smaller size of their ships. We selected this ship, the Constellation, because it is their newest ship launched this and had some more modern features including sliding door ... Read More
We have cruised with the American Cruise Line before and like the smaller size of their ships. We selected this ship, the Constellation, because it is their newest ship launched this and had some more modern features including sliding door on to the balcony and two modern elevators. Service was great. The only negative is the loud engine noise experienced in the dining room when underway. The ship has very attentive and friendly American crew. The ship is ideal for older travelers because of the smaller size the short walking distance between the aft dinning room and the forward lounge area. The ship has Wi-Fi through out the ship and a small exercise room on the fourth deck. The cabins are large and have more than adequate storage space, There are two very comfortable and well lighted lounge areas with one forward on deck 3 and one aft on deck 4. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
First American Cruise Lines cruise and wanted to experience a cruise close to home and looked forward to the beauty of the Hudson River Valley and its history. Shore excursions were great but I would like to have participated in more of ... Read More
First American Cruise Lines cruise and wanted to experience a cruise close to home and looked forward to the beauty of the Hudson River Valley and its history. Shore excursions were great but I would like to have participated in more of them. Fall color was unfortunately behind schedule but we did see some by the end of the trip. The new ship was excellent with a great staff. Public rooms were awesome. I would have liked more history lectures on the Hudson River Valley. The tour of New York State Capitol, Sunnyside, West Point, the FDR estate were excellent.I have already booked my next cruise with American Cruise Lines to Southeast Alaska. American has an excellent selection of cruises all over the USA. I would like to do the Columbia and Snake River cruise as well as the Mississippi River cruise. Overall I was very impressed with my first American Cruise Lines cruise. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Friends had recommended this cruise line. AmericaCruise could not be blamed for the weather which was unsaleable. However, as we were could not go to Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, Block Island, we were 2 days in New Bedfore and 2 ... Read More
Friends had recommended this cruise line. AmericaCruise could not be blamed for the weather which was unsaleable. However, as we were could not go to Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, Block Island, we were 2 days in New Bedfore and 2 days in NewPort. The brochure stated most excursions were complimentary, but this is UNTRUE. The only complimentary excursion were walking tours. They ranged from $25 per person to $50 per person on NewPort to the Breakers. It was unexplainable why our name was not listed on any pay tour for 4 days although we had turned in the paperwork timely and correctly. When there was an opening for the $50 per person to the Breakers, the bus. My husband at that time, had had enough and complained why the crew did not schedule enough transportation for all the cruisers, not just 50. We debarked then, never to sail again on Americruse. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
My sister-in-law booked this cruise and invited my husband and I to join them. We have traveled numerous times together and have many of the same expectations and standards. Upon reading the itinerary we were excited for the ... Read More
My sister-in-law booked this cruise and invited my husband and I to join them. We have traveled numerous times together and have many of the same expectations and standards. Upon reading the itinerary we were excited for the adventure. Upon embarking, the ship smelled old! The flower arrangements were artificial and very dusty/old and tired looking. The main gathering room, The Chesapeake room, has dirty couches and broken blinds. The stateroom was one of “the larger” rooms with a king bed (actually two twins pushed together, VERY uncomfortable) was crowded. The TV was a 19” and hard to view from the bed. The brochure stated dvd’s were available, it failed to mention they were from the 1990’s and very few. Our cabin’s furniture was also very dated and soiled. Three small pillows were there, strange for a king sized bed. The bathroom was very small and cramped. On our preference sheet, we requested extra toiletries and a small fan, neither were provided. Actually, the ship RAN OUT of shampoo and they often did not replace the bar soap. On the third day of a seven day cruise, they couldn’t keep up with the towels. There were times we did NOT have ANY towels. I mentioned my concerns to hotel manager and he told me as he was walking away (over his shoulder) there isn’t any shampoo on the whole ship! He scolded me when I asked him for a replacement key and to keep it away from my cell phone. I mentioned it never worked and that it wasn’t near my phone, he just repeated my scolding louder. Tours were very disorganized and not ADA compliant. My husband had to lag behind to help other passengers as no cruise member did. The entertainment consisted of a banjo player (who was really pretty good) and several lectures! How is lecturing a bonus evening entertainment? The food was phenomenal! Jvon was our server and was fantastic, he kept us sane! There was NO room service so we never had breakfast on board. There was a coffee donut setup from 6-7 Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
My wife and I sailed on the "American Constitution” on its October 6, 2018 Hudson River Cruise in Owner’s Suite 505. For background information, we have taken many ocean cruises, primarily on Regent and Silversea ships as ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the "American Constitution” on its October 6, 2018 Hudson River Cruise in Owner’s Suite 505. For background information, we have taken many ocean cruises, primarily on Regent and Silversea ships as well as a number of European river cruises, primarily on Tauck ships. For 2018, we wanted to try an upscale North American cruise and our travel agent spoke well of American Cruise Lines. Late last year, with high expectations, we booked our Hudson River cruise in one of the best cabins on the new (April 2018) “American Constitution”. First, our positive comments: Itinerary and Navigation - well thought out as to stops and to timing of night vs. day ship movement relative to the scenery. Smooth comfortable sailing, docking, and departures with a noteworthy turnaround in a relatively tight spot in our sailaway from Kingston, NY. Crew - competent, polite, cheerful people in all areas of the ship. They are hard working and, at times, appear to be overworked due to short staffing. Fourteen-hour days, seven days a week, appear to be the norm. Turnover appears to be high. Dining - well-prepared and presented, along the lines of traditional American classics. The menus had good variety. Overall, I would characterize the dining as three-star (Mobil/Forbes, not Michelin). In my experience, four-star is possible on river ships. Shore Excursions - interesting, well-organized, well-guided, and held to schedule. Now, to our issues: Cabin Overall - good layout but with inexpensive furniture already starting to show wear (I fixed the sagging door of the refrigerator compartment with my pocket knife’s screwdriver). Comes across as mid-range motel quality. Layout would be better with a more ship-like row of built-in cabinets on the wall opposite the bed incorporating drawers, a desk surface, the minibar, and the closet. This would allow the elimination of the desk/dresser on the back wall of the bathroom in turn allowing the bathroom to be wider. Other potential improvements would include sheer curtains in addition to the blackout drapes to allow daylight into the cabin while preserving privacy. A full-length mirror should be included. Raising the minibar off the floor would allow easier access for older clientele. Thin walls make TV’s and conversation from next cabin quite audible. One evening at 11:30 P.M. I could clearly hear the baseball playoff game next door. I had to call to ask that it be turned down. Cabin Bathroom - the biggest single dissatisfier on the ship. Please see photo above. It’s just too small, particularly in the shower area. The shower is a narrow fiberglass module with a fixed-position, fixed-flow head. With the shower door closed, it was impossible for my petite wife to get away from the flow thus subjecting her to a hair-washing whether she wanted one or not. By contrast, to show what's possible and what we expected, pls. see above picture of the shower from our 2015 Rhine River cruise cabin on Tauck’s “M.S. Inspire”. Please note the tile finishes and the fact that the shower is about double the width of the one on the “American Constitution”. There is both a rainfall shower head (dark square on ceiling) and a handheld shower head with an adjustable-height mounting. The shower door is hinged at the wall and swings both ways. Shower flow and temperature can be adjusted from the doorway prior to getting in. There’s a fold-down seat for handicapped passengers on the right side. Partly visible in the reflection on the shower glass is the sink and countertop. Hygiene - the public bathrooms near the central stairwell on the ship are simply not cleaned frequently enough. My wife noticed dirty spots on the floor that had been there 24 hours earlier. This gives us rise to concern about the cleanliness of areas of the ship that passengers don’t see. We saw railings on the central stairway being cleaned only once. The only fixed hand sanitizer dispenser we noticed was at the entrance to the dining room, not at the bottom or top of the gangway or in the lounges. We were concerned about the silverware in the dining room being placed directly on plastic table mats that we weren’t sure were changed after every service. I think the ship is at some risk of a Norovirus outbreak without sanitation being improved. Supply Outages - on Wednesday, October 10, the ship ran out of milk, first 2%, then whole and skim. Big problem for tea drinkers. The coffee and tea supplies in the lounges on decks 3 & 4 often ran out of insulating sleeves and sometimes cups and some varieties of tea bags. In summary, we were quite disappointed with our experience. At more than $1000/person/day (roughly the same as Tauck’s best European river cruise cabins), our cruise was not a good value. What we expected on the ship was Four Seasons and what was delivered was closer to Holiday Inn. We left the ship in Yonkers two days before the end of the cruise. I spoke with both the Cruise Director and the Hotel Director prior to our departure from the “American Constitution”. While the Cruise Director was both interested and concerned about our reasons for leaving, her boss, the Hotel Director, did not seem to be, instead projecting an attitude best-described by the phrase “don’t let the door hit you on the way out”. With both of them, I quietly conveyed our concerns making it clear I was not angry, just disappointed. In addition, I e-mailed ACL's East Coast Hotel Director, Christopher Nailon, and ACL's owner, Charles Robinson, with my comments as noted above. After two weeks and one week, respectively, I've had no response. We think American Cruise Lines has a long way to go to truly fulfill its slogan of “Small Ship Cruising Done Perfectly”. In the meantime, save your money and avoid major disappointment. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Hudson River - Fall foliage peak times are hard to predict and we missed the color this year. I would recommend taking a late October cruise in order to see color on the Hudson. Excursions - The excursions were fee-based, but the fees ... Read More
Hudson River - Fall foliage peak times are hard to predict and we missed the color this year. I would recommend taking a late October cruise in order to see color on the Hudson. Excursions - The excursions were fee-based, but the fees were reasonable. I thoroughly enjoyed the Lyndhurst Mansion, FDR's Hyde Park home and Presidential Library, Thomas Cole home, Olana, West Point, and the Albany City Tour of the State Capitol and NY State Museum. All were superb tours with informative guides. My only complaint is that there was not enough time at most places, especially Hyde Park, West Point, and NY Capitol and Museum in Albany. Entertainment - Nice variety (singers - several different groups, comedian, magician, violinist). Good entertainment. Lectures about the Hudson, the places we were going to visit the next day, the art and culture of the Hudson were very informative and added to the overall experience. Dining - I have never seen so much food at all hours of the day. No one could possible partake in all the food offerings. However, I found the food very salty and had a hard time finding low-sodium selections. The breakfast offerings were amazing. Don't know how they can't prepare so many choices on such a small ship. Cabin - Decor is a little dated. Room is large. There is a lot of drawer space. Bathroom is adequate for one person at a time. Room is not always re-stocked with items unless requested. Service - Varies. We had some excellent dining servers, and some who were new and just learning. Service is slow in the dining room. Embarkation and Disembarkation: Very efficient. New York City: If traveling some distance, one should spend a few days in NY City before or after the cruise. The city has so much to do. Even if you've been to NY before, there is always something new (such as observatory at 9/11 site) and new Broadway plays. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
This was my second cruise on the Independence and I have booked two more cruises for 2019 and 2020. We were able to take a New York City tour before sailing giving me a chance to visit the 911 Memorial, which was very important to me. ... Read More
This was my second cruise on the Independence and I have booked two more cruises for 2019 and 2020. We were able to take a New York City tour before sailing giving me a chance to visit the 911 Memorial, which was very important to me. Touring West Point was such a wonderful experience and the FDR Home and Library were a highlight of the trip as well. I could have spent a whole day there. I enjoy the atmosphere of the small ship and getting to know so many people. The age range of the passengers is more to my liking, closer to my age. And the fact that American Cruise Lines has staterooms designed for singles makes traveling a little less expensive for a single person. The food was wonderful and the variety at each meal was a real treat. The open seating at all meals made it so easy to get to know people. The service staff and management were exceptional. Looking forward to traveling with American Cruise Lines again. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
Although the leaves had not turned yet, the cruise was very enjoyable. The crew was great, the food was quite good, the entertainment was very good (some were better than others) and the excursions were excellent. A tour of Albany, a ... Read More
Although the leaves had not turned yet, the cruise was very enjoyable. The crew was great, the food was quite good, the entertainment was very good (some were better than others) and the excursions were excellent. A tour of Albany, a chairlift ride up Hunter Mountain, a tour of West Point, a walk across the Hudson River on what used to be a railroad bridge, a tour of Hyde Park (Franklin Roosevelt's historic home), a tour of Lyndhurst Gothic Mansion (all decked out for Halloween!) and a bus tour of NYC, including a stop at the 9/11 Memorial, were the excursions I enjoyed. They are reasonably priced too. I travelled by myself and meeting people on American Cruise Ships is really easy because they are smaller and more intimate. Since it's a smaller ship, you tend to see familiar faces in the dining room, during the cocktail hours every evening (which are included) and on excursions. I really like the "everything's included" feature so I don't have to figure out who to tip how much and I don't have to worry about how much I'm spending on drinks, alcoholic or otherwise. The crew is all American so there isn't a language barrier. My single cabin was quite adequate sizewise and so was the storage space. The bathroom was larger than some on other cruise ships. All in all, it was a great cruise! I have another, my third American Cruise, lined up next May to Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Love the small ship! We had 100 passengers, so got to know most folks on board. The ship perhaps needs to be updated, but it was clean and serviceable. There were many problems with our key cards not working, but any crew member was able ... Read More
Love the small ship! We had 100 passengers, so got to know most folks on board. The ship perhaps needs to be updated, but it was clean and serviceable. There were many problems with our key cards not working, but any crew member was able to open for us, and resetting the key was pretty quick. We were in 204, so just steps from the lounge. I didn't go to the nightly entertainment, but the cabin was quiet even while the entertainment was in progress. Balcony was great, loved the fresh air. The folks in the cabin next door started smoking on their balcony, and the crew quickly shut that down, which I really appreciated. The food was excellent! Really, everything was top quality, cooked perfectly, and enough variety that I always found something I liked.The tours were good. I wish they'd told us more about the tours, but the ones we went on were worthwhile. Would definitely go again. No big ships for me, I love the small river cruises! Read Less
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