CroisiEurope is now one of the major players in European River Cruising:
When it comes to European river cruising, CroisiEurope does not get any coverage in the southern hemisphere. Yet this French river cruise operator now has 27 river boats covering all the rivers in Europe and it seems that the company is cruising along to be one of the key players in the flourishing river cruising business in Europe.
History of CroisiEurope
CroisiEurope is an independent family business with an interesting humble beginning. When Gérard Schmitter created his company in 1976, he started the trend of river tourism by offering lunches and afternoon dances around the port of Strasbourg. An Alsatian by origin, he named his company Alsace Croisières.
In 1982 Gérard Schmitter acquired his first boat which he aptly named “L’Alsace 1”. With this, he was able to offer romantic cruises on the Rhine and sailing down to Rudesheim in Germany.
In 1984, the company introduced its first river boats with cabins. The “Hansi”, “Kleber” and “Petite France” allowed Alsace Croisières to offer longer cruises, sailing down the Rhine and its tributaries (the Neckar, the Moselle, the Main and the Saar) as well as cruises on the Dutch inland waterways.
1986 saw the launch of the “Kellermann”, the company’s first prestige-class river boat. The company then decided in 1990 that it would build its own boats. “MS Liberté” was the first company built river boat and they haven’t stopped building since.
A Name Change to CroisiEurope
To reflect its European river cruising presence, the company’s name was changed in 1997 from Alsace Croisières to CroisiEurope.
By 1999, CroisiEurope was already a flourishing company when Gérard Schmitter and his wife, Jeanine decided to hand over the reins to their four children, each one managing a certain aspect of the company’s business.
The Rhine and the Danube rivers are by far the most popular cruises for CroisiEurope, followed by the Seine, the Rhône and the Saône and the Douro River. The French make up the majority of passenger group (64.2%) but marketing campaigns outside of France has increased their non-French passengers to 35.8%.
An interesting proposition by CroisiEurope is that they offer short cruises of 3 – 7 days as well as the longer 14-day cruise. So time-challenged passengers who can’t afford the longer cruises, or families with young children, can still experience a cruise down the Rhine, Danube or any of Europe’s beautiful rivers.
Although CroisiEurope began as a river cruising business, they are now also active in the ocean cruising sector through their CroisiMer brand.
Headquartered in Strasbourg, CroisiEurope (www.croisieurope.com) has offices in Paris, Lyon, Nice, Brussels and Lausanne.What about you? What do you think?