Here’s some great news for lovers of the Great Lakes: Two small, high-end cruise ships — one new, the other newly refurbished — will make their debut next summer on the fresh-water waves of lakes Ontario, Erie, Huron, Michigan and Superior.
“It’ll be a great summer,” said Chris Conlin, owner of the Great Lakes Cruise Co., an Ann Arbor, Mich.-based travel agency that specializes in Great Lakes cruises. “We have lots of choices that we haven’t had before.”
Among the options:
The Clelia II, an all-suite ship with room for 100 passengers, will sail seven-day itineraries between Toronto and Duluth, Minn., starting in late June. Ports of call include Niagara Falls, Ontario (via the Welland Canal); Mackinac Island, Mich.; Houghton, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula; and Thunder Bay, Ontario. All sailings will offer educational themes, with speakers and seminars on topics from the lakes’ geology to the War of 1812. A golf theme is scheduled for late August; CBS News journalist Bill Geist is the guest lecturer on the inaugural sailing.
The ship, built in 1990 for Renaissance Cruises (which went bankrupt in 2001), was most recently used as a private yacht. Travel Dynamics International, a small, high-end cruise company based in New York, purchased the ship early this year.
Seven-day itineraries start at $5,595 and up per person.
The Pearl Mist, the still-under-construction inaugural ship from new company Pearl Seas Cruises, will feature 108 suites, all with private balconies. The ship will sail one 10-night and one 11-night cruise between Toronto and Chicago in June and July. Ports of call include Windsor, Ontario; Mackinac Island, Mich.; and Manitoulin Island, Ontario. Prices start at $5,605 for the 10-night sailing. more