Thursday, April 4, 2013

The American Queen - Great way to celebrate your Anniversery!

Celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary
Greetings once again from Longing For Home Bed and Breakfast!

Betty and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary in February.  It truly seems only yesterday that we joined our lives together out in the west-Texas town of El Paso.

Great Experience Aboard the American Queen
The AQ's paddlewheel

To make this anniversary extra special we booked a 7-day cruise aboard the American Queen.  This boat (not ship) is the largest steam powered paddle wheel ever built and provides an outstanding experience for those seeking something uniquely different, quite romantic and geared to adults. 

Early Evening on
the Mississippi

Moon glow
as we cruised
As the American Queen cruised along what is known as the "brown waters" of the Mississippi,  we were treated to magnificent views of the expanse of the lower Mississippi river.  At times greater than a mile across, we saw great variations of wildlife and changing shorelines as we moved along at a breathtaking 6-8 miles per hour.  The view of the river is breathtaking at all times - day and night.

The staff of the American Queen is simply unmatched in our traveling experience.  With room and turn-down service each day, we were truly treated to a top-notch experience throughout our cruise.   

Best dining ever
A big part of that experience was the service provided during each evening's dinner.  Choosing among the options offered during these four-course gourmet dinning experiences was the hardest part of our day. 

A 4-course meal each night!!
During these meals, our waiters made sure our every need was fully satisfied!  Our "singing-waiter" truly made our evening meals quite memorable.

Great service by the staff

The Mark Twain Room
During the day we also had choices to make.  Focusing on the rich history and unique character of the Mississippi communities that we visited during our cruise, multiple shore excursion options were offered at each port of call.  We could, and did, opt to stay on board during several of these stops.  During these days, we shaped our own day's activities.  We enjoyed walks along (or sitting upon) the American Queen's decks where we took in life on the Mississippi.  We also found that the boat's Mark Twain gallery provided a great place to meet and make new friends or to curl up with that book I've wanted to read.  We were also drawn into the many stories told by the boat's own river lorian - both informative and highly entertaining.     

A great place to relax

Music by Phil
With each day well spent and our dining experience completed there was still more to enjoy.  In the Grand Saloon, each night, the American Queen welcomed us to "Broadway show" style performances that caught us up and carried us down memory lane to many of the greatest hits of years past.  In addition we enjoyed the big band sounds of the Glenn Miller Band, the Marty Shaw Band and the Platters among other well known groups.  We even met Samuel Clemens himself.

Outstand - Professional Entertainment

What more could you ask?  There was also Phil who provided a piano accompanied medley each night featuring many of our favorite songs.  Then, as the evening ripened, we found ourselves drawn to the unique setting of the Engine Room Bar that is situated just forward of the boats mighty paddlewheel and just above the American Queen engine room.  Once there we enjoyed dancing to sounds of the 60's, 70's and 80's. 

All this adds up to an absolutely great experience!! It is one that we highly recommend and one that we will repeat.  Fact is, we booked a second cruise aboard the American Queen shortly after our New Year Eve cruise. 

If this blog entry peeks your interest visit the American Queen website or for great personal attentions contact Patty Horst with USA River Cruises at 1-800-578-1479.  She will take care of all the travel details for you!

Have a blessed Day.

Betty Maloney
Longing For Home Bed and Breakfast
"A State of Mind, A Place of Grace, A Way of Life*"
* Taken from the book, How to be a Better Southerner by Carolyn Kent.

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