La Belle Epoque barge

Former name: Savornin Lohmann

La Belle Epoque barge cruise ship

Cruise line
European Waterways

Specifications of La Belle Epoque barge

Year of build1930  /  Age: 93
Classhotel barge
Speed10 kn / 19 km/h / 12 mph
Length (LOA)38 m / 125 ft
Beam (width)5 m / 16 ft
Gross Tonnage200 gt
Decks with cabins1
Last Refurbishment1995
Former namesSavornin Lohmann
OwnerEuropean Waterways Ltd
OperatorEuropean Waterways Barge Cruises

La Belle Epoque barge Review

Review of La Belle Epoque barge

MS La Belle Epoque barge is a premium cruise ship was built in Holland in 1930 as cargo barge for timber shipping. The vessel was completely reconstructed in 1995. The hotel barge is owned and operated by European Waterways and currently cruises on Burgundy Canal (eastern France) on 7-day itineraries between homeports Pouillenay to Tonnerre.

MS La Belle Epoque barge cruise ship

The barge's original name was "Savornin Lohmann", with shipowner Leendert Kruijt. Growing up on the barge of his father, Leendert went from one school to another, travelling with his parents and often spending just a few hours in one school before going to another. In 1939 which bought the start of the WW2 (1939-1945), Kruijt family had to escape to France with the barge. La Belle Epoque became a timber barge and carried wood along the rivers and canals of France. Later, the Kruijt family grew in number, moved ashore and left someone else in charge of their barge. The timber business ceased and the cargo-carrying days of La Belle Epoque came to an end.

In 1993, the Kruijt family decided to sell the barge ship and retire. However, they found a buyer 3 years later but Leendert did not agree with the boat on which he had grown up to end up as recycled iron and wooden planks. In 1995 the barge was bought by European Waterways, renamed "La Belle Epoque" and renovated. Added were a jacuzzi, bike store, luxury cabins and everything else needed to transform her into a luxury boutique hotel barge.

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