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By Aaron Saunders
Cruise Critic Contributor

Avalon Envision Overview

The latest in Avalon's fleet of Suite Ships to enter service on the rivers of Europe, this blue-hulled beauty doesn't tinker with Avalon's magic formula much. Instead, the ship --- arriving in spring 2019 -- delivers a new version of the tried-and-tested features and amenities that Avalon pretty much perfected when it debuted its first Suite Ship, Avalon Panorama, back in 2011.

Find an Avalon Envision Cruise

Carrying 166 passengers served by a crew of 47, Avalon Envision shares a similarly elegant style of decor as its predecessors, with rich colors intermingled with dark woods, smooth marble and thoughtful lighting sources.

Chief among Avalon Envision's features are two decks of Panorama Suites. These 200-square-foot cabins feature wall-to-wall French balconies that open up to create what Avalon likes to call a, "wall-to-wall panoramic balcony." That might sound like public relations jargon, but the result is quite accurate. With beds positioned to face the balcony and a cozy seating area adjacent, it really does feel as if the entire cabin has opened up to the European world outside.

Like its predecessors, Avalon Envision comes chocked with a whole host of additional features, including onboard bicycles that can be used independently or on guided tours offered in Amsterdam, Breisach and Bernkastel; an Onboard Adventure Center with bicycles, active gear, Nordic walking sticks, watercraft and maps; and shore excursions that revolve around leisurely, traditional or independent levels of activity.  

Dining

Most meals are enjoyed in Avalon Envision's main dining room on Sapphire Deck. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served here in an open-seating environment. Opening hours vary depending on the day and ports of call. Breakfast and lunch are buffet style with a menu of made-to-order specialties, while dinners are typically multicourse affairs. Beer, wine and soft drinks are complimentary with lunch and dinner.

Lighter fare can be found in the ship's main lounge on Royal Deck, which serves up early and late riser's breakfast and snacks at various points throughout the day.

Light lunch and casual dinner is available in the Panorama Bistro, a special section of the ship's main lounge that is turned into an alternative dining venue featuring a small-bite tasting menu. No fee applies to dine here, but dinner reservations are highly recommended.

When weather permits, alfresco lunch and drinks are served up on the Sky Deck.

Room service is available for continental breakfast and beverages at an additional charge.

Cabins

Most of the accommodations aboard Avalon Envision are 200-square-foot Panorama Suites. These feature Avalon's wall-to-wall panoramic balconies; essentially a large French balcony that opens nearly to the extreme walls of the cabin. Beds are positioned to face the balcony, and rooms include a vanity area and a small sitting area with a table and two chairs.

Bathrooms are spacious, clad with marble and with full-sized showers. Cabins and suites are equipped with L'Occitane toiletries and bath amenities, and all rooms feature Avalon's Comfort Collection beds, a choice of soft and firm pillows, and elegant design that blends light colors with dark woods.

Deluxe Staterooms feature fixed half-height river-view windows and measure a healthy 172 square feet, while the top-of-the-line Royal Suites are 300 square feet and combine the features of a Panorama Suite with increased living space and a sitting area that, Avalon claims, can seat six fully grown adults. These suites also feature a separate bathroom and water closet, dual sinks and an enlarged shower. There are two Royal Suites onboard Avalon Envision, both located next to each other on Royal Deck.

Top Deck Attractions

Up on top, Avalon Envision's Sky Deck features a jogging track, covered and exposed seating areas, a deck game area (think oversized chess) and a whirlpool. The forward end of the Sky Deck is where Avalon Envision's Sky Grill and Sky Lounge are located, weather permitting.

Entertainment

A piano player entertains during the evening cocktail hours, and local guest performers are brought onboard at select ports for folkloric shows. Other forms of entertainment aboard Avalon Envision include cooking class, cocktail hours and evening briefings, and conversation with fellow passengers fills most of the "down time" on the ship.

Family

Few provisions are made for families aboard Avalon Envision, and children under the age of 8 are not able to travel with Avalon Waterways. While older teenagers and adults will likely find much to enjoy about Avalon Envision, this isn't the right ship for kids or young teens.

Itineraries

Avalon Envision sails a wide variety of river cruise itineraries on the Danube in 2019, including the classic eight-day Blue Danube Discovery journey between Budapest and Nuremberg, or reverse.

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Deck:
Indigo Deck
Sapphire Deck
Royal Deck
Sky Deck

Avalon Envision Ship Stats

  • Crew: 47
  • Launched: 2019
  • Decks: 3
  • Passengers: 166
  • Registry: Switzerland
Avalon Envision Ratings
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