Fred. Olsen River Cruise Review
Petter Olsen founded Fred. Olsen & Co. in 1848 in Hvitsten, a former town in Norway that was known as the smallest town that ever existed in the country. He named the company after his son Thomas Fredrik “Fred” Olsen, who took over the company after his father died and grew it into a multinational shipping business. Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is just one arm of the Fred. Olsen Group, which is largely an industrial company, and began as an ocean-going cruise line.
In 2018, the line decided to branch out and try their hand in river cruising and chartered the ship Amadeus Princess, renaming her Brabant. To this day Fred. Olsen & Co. is a family business, owned by Anette S. Olsen, the fifth generation of the family in the business.
How Many Passengers: 156 passengers
Personality: Before joining the Fred. Olsen family, Brabant was sailing for Amadeus River Cruises as Amadeus Princess. The interior of the ship remains the same as it was for Amadeus, with bright, naturally-lit spaces, dark woods, and lots of tan and red accents.
Fellow Passengers: Just like the line’s ocean ships, passengers on Brabant are primarily British and are mostly older couples.
Cabins: Most cabins are 161 square feet, the two suites onboard are 236 square feet. Among the non-suite cabins, the big difference is the type of window or balcony that is offered. Standard rooms offer windows that can’t be opened, and the other two, along with the larger suites, feature Juliette balconies.
Dining: There is an early riser spread of coffee, tea, and pastries, and then later on a hearty breakfast buffet is offered. For the main meals of the day, there are a variety of regionally-inspired dishes, and vegetarian options are always available. Lunch features a three-course meal option, which is supplemented by a buffet if guests want more of a variety. Afternoon tea is served in the Panorama Lounge with hot cuppas and a variety of sweet bites, and dinner is the main event – a five-course spread with a set seating time for everyone onboard.
Amenities: Live music in the Panorama Lounge in the evenings, a fitness room, a hair salon, massage services, a bar, a shop, giant chess board, shuffleboard, and bicycles that passengers can use when ashore
Best For: British guests, English-speakers, and older couples or groups
Included Alcohol: None
Where They Go: Danube, Main, Rhine, and Moselle rivers