The first of U by Uniworld's millennial-focused river cruise ships, The B, debuted in Paris over the weekend for a preview cruise along France's Seine River aimed at giving agents and social media influencers a sneak peek at the product.
U by Uniworld was developed by Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection as the first river cruise brand aimed at millennials and younger passengers
ages 21 to 45. The B will be joined by a second vessel, The A, in 2018.
Formerly Uniworld's River Baroness ship, the 120-passenger The B was renamed following an extensive redesign. The resulting staterooms include four suites, 26 balcony staterooms, 29 studio staterooms and two studios that have triple occupancy. All of the cabins come outfitted with Bluetooth speakers and organic BeeKind toiletries.
The B's dining venues include communal tables such as this one.
The B has an all-black exterior, and also features two rooftop venues, a spa and communal dining. There is farm-to-table cuisine served on board with dishes that include quinoa burgers, miso-marinated wild salmon and peanut butter bacon chocolate bars. U by Uniworld also has mixologists serving up craft cocktails in the bars and hosts international DJs onboard.
Technology plays a key role in onboard communications. WhatsApp and email are used for communicating with guests in lieu of the traditional daily paper itineraries. Additionally, menus are displayed on screens in the bar and restaurant, and guests can receive news through a Press Reader app. A new U by Uniworld app, which is still in development, will connect travelers before, during and after their trips and is scheduled to debut in March 2018 ahead of the first revenue sailings.
Illustrating that the line plans to do things quite differently than existing river cruise brands, The B's launch was marked by an inaugural drum circle intended to create what Uniworld described as "a spiritual energy onboard," as well as sabering champagne on the top deck and a renaming ceremony where guests released biodegradable lanterns to symbolize letting go of the vessel's previous incarnation as the River Baroness.
The renaming ceremony was led by supermodel and philanthropist Petra Nemcova, who was deemed the vessel's "guardian angel."
During the remainder of the preview cruise, guests are engaging in U by Uniworld offerings that include yoga, camping on the top deck, a silent disco party, painting classes and wine tastings. Excursions include a panoramic breakfast tasting tour, a treasure hunt at the Louvre and a Paris city roofs tour, among others.
Bookable sailings on The A and The B begin in April 2018 with prices starting at $200 per person, per day. There will be four 8-day itineraries available along the Rhine, Main, Danube and Seine rivers, with overnight stops and longer stays in Paris, Vienna, Amsterdam and Budapest. U by Uniworld will also sail two five-day holiday itineraries.