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How to Eat, Pray, Love on Avalon Envision “Your Way”

by Ilona Kauremszky

There’s a new Danube River cruise designed to meet the “Your Way” European river cruiser who likes action and notable experiences, healthy dining mixed with sustainability, and let’s admit spacious suites with sweet views.

It’s cruising your way with pre and post cruise package potential from Avalon Waterways.

On board their newest Danube River ship baby, you get all the above plus more. Award-winning best-selling author Elizabeth Gilbert of Eat, Pray, Love fame whose star power is worldwide is the inspiring Godmother behind the Avalon Envision.

This past spring in a star-studded christening ceremony over 100 of us including Liz’s mom and dad and new sweetheart gathered on the fabled Duna bank in Budapest to raise our fluted glasses of Hungary’s finest Törley sparkling wine as Godmother Liz in a symbolic gesture cut the vessel’s tethered cord unleashing the bottle in a christening ceremony like no other.

The new 443-foot long Avalon Envision which is Avalon Waterways 13th Suite Ship in Europe cruises on the Danube River making cruise holidays for 166-passengers.

Here’s how to Eat, Pray, Love on Avalon Envision “Your Way”:

The Blessing
This is the official blessing for the Avalon Envision: “We come from the water, we are made of the water, we are drawn to the water. Our lives are rivers meant to be explored and enjoyed. Let every curious soul who steps foot upon this vessel have a safe and blessed journey. May we all be changed for the better by what we discover along this river. And may this boat herself know that she is loved and revered, and that we are grateful to her for her strength and beauty. Onward! I christen thee the Avalon Envision.”

Sweet Views
The possibilities are as wide open as the views. On board Avalon Envision which joins the fleet of Avalon’s other Suite ships it’s all about the views. A view in every Suite stateroom. The dining room has a view, the Panorama Lounge has a view. Yes, the Envision is all about the vision.

For the ultimate ceremonial sail as Liz did enjoy a glass of your favourite tipple from the Bar and head to the Observation Lounge for epic views of Budapest.

Action
Head to the new Adventure Centre and meet your new Avalon Adventure Host onboard all European cruises. Love how the ship has an array of outdoor items to share with guests like bikes, Nordic walking sticks, binoculars and even FitBits. Whether cruisers are looking for a kayaking excursion or want to participate in a complimentary fitness class on the Sky Deck, Avalon’s new Adventure Host makes it happen.

Notable experiences: Avalon Choice
Avalon Waterways invites guests to dive into new experiences each day with Avalon Choice, a new sightseeing tour program available in three sightseeing styles. There’s the Classic tour excursion allowing guests to dive into the history and the heritage of local destinations with local guides. The Discovery excursions are new on the Danube River and offer inspiring interactive activities from cooking classes to painting workshops among other activities. For adrenaline-pumping, high impact fun, cruisers edge toward the Active excursions another new addition on the Danube River. These outdoor activities can involve guided jogging tours, biking, paddling and hiking.

To channel a Liz Gilbert vibe onboard the Avalon Envision, why not consider signing up for some Active excursions as Liz did. In Budapest head to the back hills of Buda for eye-opening cave tours or pick up a paddle and kayak on a Danube stretch of quiet nature-rich scenery with family and loved ones.

Inspired Dining
Avalon Fresh is about healthy cuisine options at every meal. Enjoy inspired dining menu items care of a dynamic culinary duo from Vienna known as the Wrenkh Brothers who have teamed up with Avalon to spread their favourite vegetarian cooking among other soulful healthy options.

Plus there’s a nod to Mother Earth. When you cruise on the Avalon Envision you’ll see its void of plastic accoutrement like stir sticks and straws. These plastics have been replaced by paper plus wait staff use fabric gloves in this company-wide effort to eliminate all single use plastics.

Flexible Dining
Avalon’s FlexDining® program gives guests the dining choices they crave including the onboard dining experience. For alfresco dining, head to the Sky Grill, a favourite open-air lunch spot. The Panorama Bistro offers seating perfect for couples or those who like more one on one time with their cruise bestie. Plus dinner time is flexible anytime between 7 and 8:30 pm. The Panorama Bistro, open for light dinners, has gone to self-serve style with no reservations required — perfect for when the ship is in port and for those passengers who wish to explore ashore in the evening.

Panorama Suites with sweet views
It’s easy to dream big in these Panorama Suites. With the industry’s only Open-Air Balcony each bed faces the ever-changing scenery on two full decks of every ship.

Picture wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling windows that open 11-feet wide in Europe. For Eat, Pray, Love moments why not linger inside your Panorama Suite, cuddle up with your sweetie and watch the world go by as your toes poke out from under your Egyptian super-combed cotton linen and European-style duvet.

I like the bathrobes and slippers with nightly turn-down service too. These added touches help get you into the Zen side of relaxation as you get comfortable and tuck in for the evening.

Sweeten the amenities
These Panorama Suites with their Open-Air Balconies now have a choice of four mattress styles of firmness plus the staterooms have big showers to afford more space as you shower using L’Occitane bath products, the ship’s exclusive toiletry line from France. For digital-device-loving guests find USB ports in every stateroom.

Every Suite ship also has 16 bicycles for guests interested in self-guided cycling excursions. The crew can even provide a complimentary picnic.

Floating Arts
The Avalon Envision welcomes travellers onboard with rich gray, gold and violet décor inspired by Dutch interior designer Liane van Leeuwen, original art in common areas by Dutch artist Eelco Maan and cabin paintings by another Dutch artist, Sofie Fisher.

For Eat, Pray, Love time, head to the Club Lounge with the views. Now grab a cappuccino and find a cozy spot. It’s time to sink into your world and reflect on all the good things that have come your way.

With Avalon Waterways the possibilities are as wide open as the views.

www.avalonwaterways.com