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While most of the daytime activities on board take place up on Lido Deck, Europa's lowest passenger deck is alive and kicking in the evening. Brilliantly designed with extra headroom and lots of space, the 409 seat Europa Lounge is located all the way forward on Europa Deck. This is the ship's main showroom, playing host to cabaret shows and name headliners and capable of holding all guests in one go. Further aft is the Atrium, followed by an attractive curved indoor Promenade with the wonderful Havana Bar on one side and the equally beautiful Clipper Lounge on the other. Whereas the Havana Bar caters to guests looking for peace, quiet, cigars and cognac, the Clipper Lounge is a late night spot with its large dance floor and bar. Some beautifully crafted models of clipper ships act as dividers between the sitting groups - a great idea. Again, the designers have made clever use of the extra headroom on this deck, giving each room a spacious and elegant feel.

If you are done shopping in the nicely sized boutique and jewelers, it's time to go cultural. On this ship, you will not trip over art auction items. Instead, you can look forward to visiting the floating art gallery, offering exhibitions by different artists. The art gallery also serves as private meeting room and is one of Europa's many brilliant innovations. 

Europa Lounge

Indoor Promenade
Clipper Lounge
Clipper Lounge
Boutique

Europa Lounge

Clipper Lounge
Havana Bar
Havana Bar
Floating Art Gallery
 

Walking further aft, a massive floral arrangement catches the eye. It is the centerpiece in the entrance lobby leading to Europa's three dining hot spots. First, there is the Europa Restaurant, seating all guests in one open seating and featuring a brilliant "grand hotel" look with its high ceiling, wood parquet flooring and beautiful draperies and chandeliers. In this restaurant, breakfast, lunch and dinner are served daily.

As a first for Hapag-Lloyd,  Europa boasts two specialty restaurants for which reservations are required (however, there is no surcharge to dine here). Venezia on port side offers the best in Italian cuisine, while Oriental on starboard side will attract fans of oriental food. The decor matches the themes, with a huge colorful mural in Venezia and a clean-cut, Japanese look at Oriental. Interestingly, Hapag-Lloyd also offers themed lunches in these popular restaurants in addition to the nightly dinners.

The time has come to say goodbye to the German excellence of Europa. This ship can best be compared to the finest of German hotels; service and food are truly excellent and everything (and I mean everything!) is being taken care of. Add Europa's imaginative itineraries and its young and enthusiastic crew and Berlitz' 5 star plus score becomes understandable!

Venezia Italian restaurant

Entrance to the Europa Restaurant
Europa Restaurant
Europa Restaurant
Europa Restaurant

Venezia Italian restaurant

Oriental restaurant
Venezia Italian restaurant
Europa Restaurant
Europa Restaurant

 

All photos and text: 2004 Bart de Boer - www.ShipParade.com

First published on October 16, 2004. All rights reserved.