Here Are All The Ships in American Queen Voyages Fleet

American Queen

After launching service in 2011, American Queen Voyages recently announced plans to cease operations.

Mostly cruising in U.S. Domestic Waters, the company currently operates a seven-ship fleet that includes classic riverboats, coastal vessels and expedition ships.

Cruise Industry News looks at the status, location, and history of every vessel in the American Queen Voyages fleet.

For a complete overview of the U.S. river market, see the 2024 USA Riverboat Market Report by Cruise Industry News.

American Queen
Capacity: 436 guests
Tonnage: 3,707
Year Built: 1994
Former names: N/A
Current Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

Bought from MARAD in 2011, the American Queen was the first vessel acquired by American Queen Voyages. Built in 1995, the vessel was designed by Delta Queen Steamboat Co. as a replica of the classic Mississippi paddle-wheelers.

Considered the largest river steamboat ever built, the 436-guest vessel was mostly used for cruising on the Mississippi, with itineraries also sailing to neighboring waterways, including the Cumberland, the Tennessee, and the Ohio rivers.

American Empress
Capacity: 223 guests
Tonnage: 5,975
Year Built: 2003
Former names: Empress of the North
Current Location: Portland, Oregon

In 2013, the American Empress became the second cruise ship in American Queen Voyages’ fleet. Formerly named Empress of the North, the 2003-built vessel was acquired from MARAD for an undisclosed amount.

Originally built as a coastal ship for Majestic America Line, the 223-guest paddle-wheeler had been offering cruises in the Columbia and Snake rivers since debuting for AQV in 2014.

American Duchess
Capacity: 166 guests
Tonnage: 3,560
Year Built: 2017 (using the hull of 1995-built casino ship)
Former names: Battendorf Capri
Current Location: Amelia, Louisiana

The American Duchess entered service in mid-2017. Using the hull of a former casino ship, the 166-guest vessel was designed as a classical paddle-wheeler, featuring all suite accommodations.

After several seasons cruising in the Mississippi River and its tributaries, the American Duchess entered an extended lay-up in early 2023 and has been out of service ever since.

American Countess
Capacity: 246 guests
Tonnage: 6,837
Year Built: 2020 (using the hull of 1995-built casino ship)
Former names: Kanesville Queen
Current Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

The newest riverboat in American Queen Voyages’ fleet, the American Countess entered service in mid-2021. Built for the company using the hull of a former casino ship, the paddlewheeler was designed with a traditional look, reminiscent of the classic Mississippi steamboats.

During the 2023 season, the 246-guest ship offered a series of cruises to the Mississippi, the Ohio, the Cumberland and the Tennessee rivers.

Ocean Victory
Capacity: 186 guests
Tonnage: 8,000
Year Built: 2021
Former names: N/A
Current Location: Antarctica (in service for Albatros Expeditions)

Initially chartered by Victory Cruise Lines, the Ocean Victory was integrated into the American Queen fleet when the company’s river and coastal products came together under a single brand in 2021.

An expedition ship, the 186-guest vessel was chartered from SunStone Ships for summer programs in Alaska and Canada. The exploration itineraries were first introduced by AQV in 2022 and were set to return for a third season in 2024.

Ocean Navigator
Capacity: 202 guests
Tonnage: 4,954
Year Built: 2001
Former names: Cape Cod Light, Coastal Queen 2, Clipper Discoverer and Sea Discoverer
Current Location: Portland, Maine

For sale by American Queen Voyages since late 2023, the Ocean Navigator was initially operated by Victory Cruise Liners before being integrated into the company’s fleet in 2021.

Built in the early 2000s as a coastal, U.S.-flagged vessel, the 202-guest ship had ben acquired by American Queen in 2019. More recently, it offered varied itineraries to Canada & New England and the Great Lakes.

Ocean Voyager
Capacity: 202 guests
Tonnage: 4,954
Year Built: 2001
Former names: Cape May Light, Sea Voyager, Saint Laurent and Sea Voyager
Current Location: Portland, Maine

The Ocean Voyager was also earmarked to leave American Queen Voyages’ fleet since completing its summer program in 2023.

Previously operated by Victory Cruise Lines, the coastal vessel joined the company in 2019 before being transferred to American Queen in 2021. Like its sister ship Ocean Navigator, the U.S.-built ship was offering itineraries in the Great Lakes and Canada & New England before being withdrawn.

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