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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
I always wanted to visit the birthplace of Rock 'n Roll, Memphis, and this seemed the ideal way to get there from another of our favourite spots, New Orleans. From the time we checked out of our pre cruise hotel we were very well ... Read More
I always wanted to visit the birthplace of Rock 'n Roll, Memphis, and this seemed the ideal way to get there from another of our favourite spots, New Orleans. From the time we checked out of our pre cruise hotel we were very well taken care of by one one the American Cruise Lines hostesses who escorted us onto our transfer bus and from there we were welcomed aboard with a glass of "Bucks Fizz" and music from a small jazz combo. From there on it was all fun, good food, drink and entertainment. Every member of the staff was warm and friendly, the stops and tours were most interesting, backed up by Bill, an interesting "Riverlorian" who told tales of that river and the history of the civil war. He really was a first class entertainer. The highlight if each day was the cocktail hour at 5.30 every day where one could drink any kind of beverage for an hour and nibble away at delicious hot and cold snacks. Indeed, so good were the snacks it sometimes made it difficult to do justice to the excellent fare on offer for the evening meal at 6.30. As Europeans we found cocktails and dinner were served a little earlier than we were normally used to, but as they say "When in Rome do as the Romans do!" It wasn't that much of a hardship, in fact all the meals were excellent, good sized portions, well prepared food and drinks included in the package. It really was an all inclusive trip. The only small criticism we had was that it was sold to us in the UK as "Jazz Themed Cruise" and although there was some jazz it somehow got changed to a "Music Cruise" which was a little disappointing, though a comedienne/singer called Judy Davis was the outstanding star of the week. It was my 80th birthday during the week and again all the waiting staff went out of their way to ensure that I had a truly memorable dinner. In summary we would rank it as one of the best holidays we have taken. Thank you American Cruise Lines. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This trip was all that we expected and we enjoyed it very much. The America is a beautiful river boat. We found the boats tours very good--they gave us a good overview of life in the South along the River in the in the 1800's and ... Read More
This trip was all that we expected and we enjoyed it very much. The America is a beautiful river boat. We found the boats tours very good--they gave us a good overview of life in the South along the River in the in the 1800's and now. We stayed at the Roosevelt in New Orleans for a couple of nights pre-cruise and The Peabody in Memphis post-cruise which also added a lot to our trip. Don't miss the World War II museum in New Orleans and Graceland in Memphis. Some have written about the quality of service in the dining room--these are mostly college age young people and what they lack in experience they make up for with enthusiasm. We found the food very good and to American tastes. We are experienced ocean cruisers and found river cruising very enjoyable. If you reserve another cruise while on board they give you a 15% discount. We enjoyed this enough that we signed up for a 14 day East coast inland waterway cruise this Spring. Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We had a great week on the American Spirit. I will admit that I was someone hesitant that this cruise was going to be anything other than mediocre after reading some of the reviews. I only have to surmise that those folks just can't ... Read More
We had a great week on the American Spirit. I will admit that I was someone hesitant that this cruise was going to be anything other than mediocre after reading some of the reviews. I only have to surmise that those folks just can't be pleased. Here are some overall comments from our experience. The most important being - my husband and I who are in our 50's had a wonderful week of peace and quiet. We took walks together when on shore and met some truly wonderful people. If you're looking for casinos and a 24 hour bar, this isn't the ship for you. But if you are looking for a perfect trip to shut off the phones and just watch some spectacular views from your balcony - this is the ship. This is a very understated cruise, which was perfect for us. 1. Food. Food was great. With the exception of a dry pork chop one night - overall the quality of the food was excellent. You are able to special order to some extent if you don't like what's on the menu. It is a set menu and you do make your choices in the morning. Keep in mind this is a small ship so they carry everything. 2. Activities. There is a speaker that goes on the cruise who is very educated about the area and gives talks at different points in the cruise. Our speaker also led several tours. The evening activities are kinda bad. So my best advice is to skip it and sit up on the observation deck or enjoy your balcony. Tours were good. 3. Service. This is where people get unnecessarily mean. The staff is comprised of college students who are serving 13 week internships. They are young and they will goof occasionally (forgetting your toast or serving right to left). But they are enthusiastic and hard working. Some will go on to terrific careers in the hospitality industry, others won't. One of our favorites on the ship is preparing to enter the Peace Corp. Another one was so excited to have landed his first big interview with an airline because of the internship and was excited to share that he had gotten his first car and apartment. It really is part of the charm of the cruise to interact with these young adults. 4. Management. Is excellent. Every effort is made to accommodate the passengers. The director of western operations made two different appearances on our cruise to inquire earnestly about where they could improve. My only response was "I want a coffee maker in my room." 5. WiFi. WiFi isn't particularly great. But we didn't have a problem because we used my husband's phone as a hotspot. Which would be my suggestion to all who need to get online. Overall we had such a great time. So good that we before the cruise was over we booked the Juneau roundtrip for 2017. Even booked the same room! There is always room for improvement - but overall we think it was money well spent. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
The shore excursion were good as was the food. The toilet situation needs some overhaul which I understand is coming at the end of the season. The staff is very attentive and tries hard to please the passengers. If you don't like ... Read More
The shore excursion were good as was the food. The toilet situation needs some overhaul which I understand is coming at the end of the season. The staff is very attentive and tries hard to please the passengers. If you don't like large portions of food ask for a half. Our cabin was good sized but have enjoyed the newer ships more. This trip was our fourth on this line. The naturalists on board was excellent and made the trip more enjoyable as was the variety of musical offerings. I personally liked my side day trip to Victoria, BC where I enjoyed tea at the Empress Hotel. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We embarked from a dock very near to the St. Louis Gateway Arch. The walk down to the boat was somewhat steep but assistance was offered and we left our luggage with crew near the roadway. River travel is laid back and easy. We ... Read More
We embarked from a dock very near to the St. Louis Gateway Arch. The walk down to the boat was somewhat steep but assistance was offered and we left our luggage with crew near the roadway. River travel is laid back and easy. We had only one morning of rain so we had a lot of time to watch as the captain and crew navigated the five story Queen through the many locks on the Mississippi as well as through the many different lift or swinging bridges. It was warm and comfortable most of the time to sit out and watch. We often arrived early to the next port of call. Chairs and tables on deck were plentiful. Snacks and beverages including sodas were always available. One could even do laundry if desired at no cost at the self-service machines provided. There were daily talks with the Riverlorian who was always on board and available often on the top deck. Steve Marking and Joanna Funk provided not only on-board musical entertainment with help with wildlife sightings and identification of birds. Joanna also played the calliope when we left ports and also for the Sunday morning hymn sings. The cocktail hour each evening was a highlight and the Hors d'oeuvres served were excellent and plentiful. We had more food on the cruise than needed! I thought it was a great touch that we could choose to have half portions at a meal. We always found the meals delicious and we had some choice as to entrees. On the downside, as a diabetic, there were limited dessert options for me. Although I met with one of the chefs to discuss ideas, those were not always available. We enjoyed different entertainment not only at cocktail hour but also after dinner each night and many were very good and entertaining. We also were up top on the 5th deck the evening of the eclipse ... and yes, the clouds opened up to be able to see a good amount of it. I would recommend the American Cruise Lines for a truly Americana venture such as the Northern Mississippi Cruise we took. They have other interesting river cruises as well. This was our first trip with them and we would consider them again. Read Less
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