Orient-Express Hotels, owners or part-owners and
managers of 45 hotel, cruise and luxury rail businesses in 22
countries, is to launch a new river cruiser in Myanmar in July
Currently under construction in Yangon,
the 50-guest ship will complement Orient-Expressí two other
businesses in Myanmar, namely The Governorís Residence which is a
48-key colonial-style hotel in Yangon, and the Road to Mandalay
river cruiser which has been cruising the Ayeyarwady River for 17
Named Orcaella after the dolphins known to
inhabit the Ayeyarwady River, the Irrawaddy Flotilla style ship
will offer a collection of cruises giving passengers access to the
very heart of this beguiling country.
Operating between January to April and July to December, Orcaella will offer seven and 11 night
cruise itineraries with plenty of leisurely cruising time.
Orcaella will meander the Ayeyarwady River between Yangon
and Bhamo stopping at the key cultural sites and towns as well as
dropping anchor at interesting sites off the beaten track.
nimble ship with its low draft will also cruise on the Chindwin
River, passing extensive mountain ranges, winding its way through
western Myanmar as far north as Homalin which is less than 30
miles from the Indian border.
With 40 staff
onboard, and a maximum of 50 guests, the ship will maintain
Orient-Expressí reputation for offering quality service and
great attention to detail.
The shipís small size and low draft
will enable it to ply remote areas of both rivers giving the rare
opportunity to explore this magical countryís rich heritage,
natural beauty and friendly people, further adding to
Orient-Expressí portfolio offering enriching journeys of
All the 25 cabins will open on
to the river via floor to ceiling sliding glass doors and Juliette
balconies providing the perfect frame to the river and its banks.
The elegant four-deck river cruiser will feature two Balcony
Suites at the bow on the Main Deck, 15 State and eight Deluxe
Cabins, across the Main Deck and Upper Deck. All cabins will have
air conditioning and en-suite facilities and four cabins will be
On the Observation Deck, there
will be a dedicated relaxing area with a retractable awning and
reclining chairs providing the perfect vantage point to watch the
dramatic scenery pass by.
A lounge and bar, which will be open all
day for refreshments and alfresco dining, will be the social hub
of this ship, and will be complemented by a separate swimming pool.
There will also be a well equipped fitness
centre and treatment room which will offer a range of relaxing
treatments with a local influence.
On the Main Deck will be the
restaurant with comfortable seating and large picture windows and
two boutiques selling a variety of traditional and local crafts.
Just like Road To Mandalay, Orcaella will have a medical room and a fully qualified resident doctor situated on the Lower Deck.
When Orcaella commences cruising, its guests will
be able to enjoy plenty of cruising time combined with a variety of
interesting and informative offshore excursions, in small groups.
Excursions include the chance to witness a traditional Noviciation
Ceremony of local monks, a local Ďtea-shopí experience, trekking
though the jungle, the chance to play 9-holes at an old colonial
golf course, exploring caves housing 492 Buddha chambers carved
into the hillside just outside of Monywa, a visit to the only
bespectacled Buddha (thought to have healing powers) close to Pyay,
a train journey into thick Kachin jungle and a chance to meet
working elephants in the Burmese teak forest.
Highlights of the
schedule will include:
Ayeyarwady River Cruises:
The Ayeyarwady River is Myanmar's lifeline, the people and economy
ever dependent on its vital natural source. Ferries, bamboo rafts,
barges and fishing boats, all ply their trade along these waters
and over the centuries Myanmar has developed around the banks of
this mighty river making it the ideal vantage point from which to view life on the riverbank.
Gorges of the far
North: An 11-night cruise which covers 682 miles departing from
the storied city of Mandalay up to Bhamo, near the Chinese border
and at the foothills of Yunnan, finishing at the spellbinding
plain of temples at Bagan.
The Jewels of the
Ayeyarwady: A seven-night cruise covering 506 miles commencing in
Yangon and ending in Bagan with highlights including guided
excursions to Bagan and a visit to the Pyi Taw Pyan Pagoda, known
as the ĎRetuning Home Pagodaí which houses the famous bronze
Buddha once taken by the British Army and later returned by order
of H.M. Queen Victoria.
The Ayeyarwady Experience: A
seven-night cruise covering 506 miles starting in Bagan and ending
in Yangon with highlights including a visit to Syriam, a sleepy
village outside Yangon and a visit to an impressive 20ft Buddha
made of straw lacquer.
Chindwin River Cruises: The
windy and narrow Chindwin River snakes through North West Myanmar
through the most spectacular scenery which is ensconced by sheer
cliffs, verdant jungles, and bustling towns and villages and much
of it remains unspoiled due to difficulty of access overland.
Discovering the Chindwin River: An 11-night cruise of
854 miles along the Chindwin River through rugged and dramatic scenery with highlights including a visit to a candlelit street
market and a monastery housing the Shwe Sagar Buddha: one of ten
carved from a single trunk of wood about 1000 years ago.
All itineraries can be combined with stays in Yangon, Inle
Lake or stunning Ngapali on the Indian Ocean. Prices start from US$5,040 per person for a seven-night cruise and includes all meals
onboard, excursions, transfers and domestic flights.
Road To Mandalay and Orcaella are both available for private charter and
can be chartered in tandem, making a total occupancy of 132
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