L'Art de Vivre

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L'art de Vivre Hotel Barge Moored on the Nivernais Canal.jpg
L'Art de Vivre Hotel barge moored on the Nivernais Canal
Flag of France.svgFrance
Name: L'Art de Vivre
Owner: European Waterways, LTD
Operator: European Waterways, LTD
Port of registry: Bourdeaux
Route: Nivernais Canal: Auxerre to Clamecy
Launched: 1917
Christened: Marie Brizzard
Status: In service
General characteristics
Class and type: Commercial passenger vessel
Tonnage: 100 tons
Length: 100 ft (30 m)
Beam: 16.5 ft (5.0 m)
Height: 11.5 ft (3.5 m)
Draught: 4.6 ft (1.4 m)
Decks: 1
Installed power: 2 x 220 volt generators
Propulsion: Main engine 150 HP BAUDOIN
Speed: Maximum 10 knots
Capacity: 8 passengers
Crew: 4 crew
Notes: Holds 10 tons of water, 2 tons of fuel

The L'Art de Vivre (The Art of Living) was built in 1917 in Deptford, England, as a cargo barge but currently serves as a luxury hotel barge owned and operated by European Waterways.


Originally christened as Marie Brizzard, her original purpose was to ferry ammunition to the beaches of Normandy to help the Allies fighting in the Somme. She was built particularly strong to resist the English Channel's harsh weather conditions and groundings on a Normandy beach. After the end of World War II, she was delivered along the north and west coasts of France and taken to Rochefort in the River Charente estuary. Here, she delivered barrels of Cognac from Angoulême to Rochefort. She has had many names during her life, including Marie Brizzard, Cognac, Royal Cognac, Napoleon, Mark Twain, Magellan, and Kir Royal.

In 1975 she was converted into a hotel barge by Florian Waleski, who operated the hotel barge until 1997, when she was purchased by European Waterways, and she had an interior refit of the cabins and galley. For the next ten years, L'Art de Vivre was the only hotel barge to navigate the shallow reaches of the upper Nivernais Canal in Burgundy. In 2008 she underwent a third refit and over $200,000 was invested in four new cabins.


L'Art de Vivre currently has four double cabins allowing her to carry up to eight passengers. She also has separate crew quarters which house the crew of four people.[1] The crew consists of the captain and pilot, deck hand, and tour guide, housekeeper, and master chef.[2][3][4]


  1. ^ Deck plan
  2. ^ Steven B. Stern (2004). Stern's Guide to the Cruise Vacation 2005. Pelican Publishing Company. ISBN 978-1-58980-240-7. 
  3. ^ Kay Showker; Bob Sehlinger (2007). The Unofficial Guide to Cruises. Wiley. ISBN 978-0-470-08791-6. 
  4. ^ Shirley Slater; Harry Basch (1997). Fielding's Worldwide Cruises 1998. Fielding Worldwide. ISBN 978-1-56952-156-4.