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First Modern Riverboat in the U.S. to Sail from Port of New Orleans

Pressrelease American Song

American Song, the first modern riverboat in the U.S., arrives at the Port of New Orleans days before making its inaugural cruise.


The Port of New Orleans will make river cruise history when American Song, the first contemporary riverboat in the U.S., sails its inaugural cruise Oct. 6, 2018 on the Mississippi River.

“Inland river cruising is a quickly growing segment of our cruise portfolio. We appreciate our partnership with American Cruise Lines and are working together to provide an exceptional experience for river cruise customers,” said Brandy D. Christian, Port of New Orleans President and CEO. “The history and charm of our vibrant city combined with the modern appeal of the American Song makes sailing from New Orleans on the Mississippi River truly unique.”

American Song is the flagship in the new series of contemporary riverboats by American Cruise Lines, the company that operates the new ship. With an exclusive capacity of just 184 guests, American Song provides modern design features and contemporary styling that today’s traveler has come to expect.

“American Cruise Lines is delighted to introduce American Song from the Port of New Orleans,” said Charles A. Robertson, CEO of American Cruise Lines. “It is only fitting to see the first modern riverboat in U.S. history debut on the Mississippi – the nation’s most storied and iconic river.”

American Song will cruise a full schedule of 8-day Lower Mississippi River cruises throughout the remainder of 2018 before repositioning out west to the Columbia & Snake Rivers in 2019. American Song’s sister ship, American Harmony, the second modern riverboat in the series, will take over on the Mississippi River in 2019 joining two of American Cruise Line’s Victorian-style paddlewheelers, Queen of the Mississippi and America.

The new modern riverboat features a four-story glass-enclosed atrium with a large domed skylight, which will serve as the central gathering point for the entire ship. American Song will also feature lounges soaring 40 feet above the water with triple the glass of other riverboats, offering astounding views.

The arrival of American Song is the latest in a series of milestones achieved by Port NOLA’s thriving cruise sector that offers passengers both riverine and ocean-going itineraries.

Disney Cruise Line recently announced it will sail from Port NOLA in early 2020 with the Disney Wonder, a 2,700-passenger ship, embarking on a variety of Caribbean and Bahamian cruises – marking the first time Disney Cruise Line will have a homeport in Louisiana. The Disney Wonder is scheduled for six cruises during a limited-time season from New Orleans, Feb. 7 through March 6.

Port NOLA will welcome the largest cruise ship in both length and passenger occupancy to ever sail from New Orleans when the 3,963-passenger Norwegian Breakaway arrives in November 2018 replacing the Norwegian Pearl. Norwegian Cruise Line will offer guests a new cruise experience the following year when the 3,963-passenger Norwegian Getawayrepositions in the Crescent City replacing Norwegian Breakaway in November 2019.

Royal Caribbean International returns to New Orleans in December 2018 to homeport the Vision of the Seas, a 2,050-passenger ship.

Carnival Cruise Line will increase capacity on its short cruise program in 2019 by replacing the Carnival Triumph with the Carnival Valor, a 2,974-passenger ship. Carnival will offer guests a new cruise experience in 2019 when theCarnival Glory takes over the 7-day itinerary of the Carnival Dream.

The American Queen Steamboat Company homeports two paddlewheelers that offer inland river cruises with theAmerican Duchess, a 166-passenger, all-suite paddlewheeler, and the American Queen, a 436-passenger vessel that is the largest riverboat in the world.

Port NOLA anticipates setting a new cruise record in 2018 after handling 1,150,172 passenger movements in 2017, which would mark the fifth consecutive year of more than one million cruise passenger movements.

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About American Cruise Lines

American Cruise Lines was recently awarded Cruise Critic’s 2018 Cruisers’ Choice Award for Best River Line in the U.S. & Canada. American operates the largest and newest fleet of authentic paddlewheelers, coastal cruise ships and modern riverboats. With over 35 itineraries visiting 25 states, American cruises along the rivers, as well as the coastal and inland waterways of New England, Alaska, the Pacific Northwest, the Mississippi River system and the Southeast.