American Queen Merges with Victory Cruise Lines

American Queen Steamboat Company has announced that it has merged with sister company Victory Cruise Lines, and the brands now have one new name: American Queen Voyages.

Offering a large variety of cruise itineraries in North America, American Queen Voyages is comprised of the new following brands: American Queen Voyages River, American Queen Voyages Lakes & Ocean, and American Queen Voyages Expedition.

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A marketing image for the new brand, courtesy of American Queen Voyages

Embracing its new tagline “Discovery Runs Deep,” American Queen Voyages invites guests to throw away the guidebook and head off the beaten path for unique experiences in different parts of North America.

“Through a decade of transformation, American Queen Voyages has surged from the great American rivers to include lakes, ocean and expedition experiences,” said Shawn Bierdz, president, American Queen Voyages.

“Today, we are American Queen Voyages and embrace this simple but important expression – Discovery Runs Deep. As we move into this new chapter and introduce our version of encounter travel, we uphold the originating vision of our company’s founder and chairman, John Waggoner and his unwavering belief in the renaissance of U.S. river cruising and close-to-home adventures.”

Embracing its Mississippi River and paddlewheel roots, the newly imagined brand celebrates its growth from operating its singular namesake vessel, American Queen, to expanding to a seven-vessel fleet with the acquisition of Victory Cruise Lines.

Looking ahead, American Queen Voyages will operate eight vessels by 2023 and plans to deliver experiences throughout America’s heartland rivers, the Great Lakes, and the Pacific Northwest, as well as Canada and the Eastern Seaboard, Mexico and the Yucatán Peninsula, and Alaska.

READ MORE: Cruising is Back: What’s Next According to Top Execs

American Queen Voyages River

american duchess the river club and terrace
The River Club & Terrace on American Duchess (Photo courtesy of American Queen Voyages)

American Queen Voyages River will be led by namesake U.S.-flagged ship American Queen, the largest riverboat in the world. Longer than a football field and towering six decks in height, American Queen is a marvel of modern engineering.

The vessel offers convenient departures from river port cities including Memphis, New Orleans, Cincinnati, Louisville, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, and Minneapolis.

In April 2014, American Queen Steamboat Company began serving the Pacific Northwest with American Empress, and added American Duchess to the Mississippi River in 2017. The newest boat to join the American Queen Steamboat Company fleet was American Countess, which made her debut in March 2021.

American Queen Voyages Lakes & Ocean

Formerly Victory Cruise Lines, American Queen Voyages Lakes & Ocean encompasses the brand’s sailings in Canada, the Great Lakes, New England and the Eastern Seaboard, and Mexico and the Yucatán Peninsula.

Identical 202-passenger ships, formerly Victory I and Victory II, sail these regions and will be renamed Ocean Voyager and Ocean Navigator.

American Queen Voyages Expedition

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Ocean Victory (Image courtesy of American Queen Voyages)

American Queen Voyages Expedition launches the brand’s advance into expedition cruising.

Comprised of newly-built 186-passenger vessels, the brand will operate all-inclusive cruises to Alaska on Ocean Victory in 2022 and Ocean Discoverer in 2023.

The brand-new, expedition-style Ocean Victory will operate 12 and 13-night journeys through less-traveled regions of Alaska’s Inside Passage, led by an expedition team. Explorers will deploy kayaks and Zodiacs with expedition leaders, view wildlife from sliding observation platforms, witness marine research by California Polytech University students in real-time, and have conversations with First Nation leaders.

READ NEXT: American Cruise Lines Paddlewheelers to Receive Redesigns & New Names

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