American Canadian Caribbean Line (ACCL), a family-operated small ship niche cruise line popular with active mature travelers, has completed a $2 million, nine-month refurbishment of its 96-passenger M/V Grande Caribe and 66-passenger M/V Niagara Prince as part of a scheduled 2009 fleet upgrade. The 98-passenger M/V Grande Mariner is scheduled for refurbishment in 2010 during its six-month drydock.
The refurbishment took place at ACCL’s sister company which built the ships, Blount Boats in Warren, RI. Improvements include new decor in all cabins designed in a classic nautical theme with warm wood-tone interiors as well as new furniture in the main lounge area of the ships. The Grande Caribe has been retrofitted with separate shower areas in select staterooms throughout all decks including upgraded head systems. The Niagara Prince is now equipped with state-of-the-art audio/visual including a flat screen TV monitor in the main lounge.
All ships within ACCL’s fleet feature staterooms with individually controlled air conditioning systems that continuously feed in fresh air and remove “used” air. Guests can continue to choose ocean-view cabins via porthole or sliding window with hallway or deck access, as well as several interior cabins that vary in size and berth configuration.
“Our goal remains to deliver adventurous, casual-style cruises to remote shores and places where large ships cannot navigate, so our small ships are uniquely designed and built to accommodate this niche,” states Nancy E. Blount, president of ACCL. “Passenger response to the retrofits has been positively terrific this summer and we are looking forward to making similar changes to our remaining Grande Class vessel, the Grande Mariner, this winter.”
ACCL worked with renowned Newport, RI designer, the Ron Alose Design Group who also maintains an office in Fort Lauderdale, FL.
From January through October 2010, ACCL offers travelers itineraries packed with friendly canal towns, riverside communities, old-world cities, and tropical vacation destinations while cruising up-close to the most picturesque and historical coastlines. Family operated since 1966, ACCL navigates areas usually only accessible by private boat. All vessels are U.S. flag and can accommodate up to 98 guests. Different by design, the fleet is custom built each with Blount-patented innovations such as the retractable pilot house, shallow draft (6.5’) and bow ramp, enabling the ships to travel beneath low bridges and to remote beaches and interesting terrain.