Showing posts with the label luxury travel

My Thoughts as I Disembark the American Queen Steamboat Cruise

It had been a wonderful trip heading north on the Mississippi River. The American Queen Steamboat experience was like no other cruise either Lynn or I had previously experienced. We were all packed to go and it was much easier than usual because we had my van waiting at St. Louis Airport. After a leisurely breakfast, we were able to just hang shopping bags on my scooter and head out without worrying about going through security and getting on a plane. The other thing that was nice was not having to go through a huge cruise terminal or deal with customs. We had a leisurely breakfast, walked off the boat, and got on the bus to the airport. A big thank you to America Queen Voyages for hosting us on this adventure. Lynn and I had a great time on this cruise. Here’s a break down of more detailed opinions:     The Boat Elegant is probably my best description for the American Queen. The boat definitely makes you feel like you are back in the 19 th century and expect to see Mark Twa

2 for One: LeClaire and Clinton from the American Queen

After an unexpected day on the river, we had a busy day on and off the American Queen . I got up early and went to breakfast in the dining room. It looked like another picture-perfect day and I sat by the window for my pancake breakfast. My friend Lynn joined me in a little while and then we headed off the boat to Clinton, Iowa . The low water levels on the Mississippi had kept us from Dubuque the previous day and had changed the Bettendorf stop to Clinton on this way.   I had made arrangements to visit Le Claire from our stop in Dubuque. It took some reorganizing, especially since the Clinton stop was shorter than Dubuque, but I was able to keep that appointment. I still wanted to see some of Clinton, so I took my scooter around the scenic waterfront and a bit of the town. I saw the Veterans Memorial and lighthouse in a town that once had more millionaires than anywhere else in Iowa. Lynn met me at the curb in front of the ship, where Bob Schiffe, Executive Director of the Buffalo

Arriving in Red Wing on the American Queen

My friend Lynn and I slept well on our first night on the American Queen . We had a full day a head of us and we started with a quick breakfast at the Front Porch Café. One of the complimentary amenities of the cruise line was unlimited specialty coffees and we took full advantage preparing our lattes to taste with our eggs and pastries. The American Queen is all about conservation. Everyone was given a water bottle and there were water filling stations on every floor. There were no plastic water bottles available. Another thing available to all passengers at no charge were the hop on, hop off bus tours at every stop. It was nice to have the freedom to explore, with transportation that included taking my scooter on the bus, a guide telling us about the towns and attractions, and all admission fees paid by the American Queen Voyages. Our first experience with the tours was in Red Wing . I had never been to this Minnesota town before and I was looking forward to checking it out.

Mall of America Tour and American Queen Embarkation

My friend, Lynn, and I had a good night’s sleep at the Radison Blu Mall of America , but we knew we had a very full day ahead. It started with breakfast in the hotel’s conference room with the other passengers to be on our American Queen voyage. Everyone was friendly and we were all excited to be embarking on this journey in the afternoon. River cruises work differently than ocean liners when it comes to check-in. Since there is no cruise port for everyone to gather in and check-in, it’s done in the hotel. This was pretty much the only thing in our weeklong trip that was disorganized. They used temporary workers in the port and we would later learn that most of the information we were given was wrong. Everyone tried to keep their cool and figured they’d straighten things (like dinner seatings and excursions) on the ship. When I found out I would have a free day in the Minneapolis area I wanted to finally visit Paisley Park, Prince’s former home. I thought it would work out, bu