La Renaissance (barge)

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La Renaissance Hotel Barge On The Canal De Briare.jpg
La Renaissance cruising on the Canal de Briare
Flag of France.svgFrance
Name: La Renaissance
Owner: European Waterways, LTD
Operator: European Waterways, LTD
Port of registry: Paris
Route: River Seine/Canal de Briare: Montargis to Châtillon-sur-Loire
Launched: 1960
Christened: Bonne Humeur
Status: In service
General characteristics
Class and type: Commercial passenger vessel
Tonnage: 275 tons
Length: 128 ft (39 m)
Beam: 17.5 ft (5.3 m)
Height: 12.5 ft (3.8 m)
Draught: 5.25 ft (1.60 m)
Decks: 2
Installed power: 2 x 220 volt generators
Propulsion: 250 HP BAUDOIN
Speed: Maximum speed 10 knots
Capacity: 8 passengers
Crew: 5 crew
Notes: Fuel capacity 3 tons, Water capacity 12 tons

The La Renaissance was built in Belgium in 1960 as a standard péniche barge to carry cargo along the canals of Europe. Her original cargo was grain and iron ore. She presently serves as a luxury hotel barge, owned and operated by European Waterways.


The barge was built as La Bonne Humeur ('good mood') in 1960, and measures 39 m (128 ft) long by 5.20m (17 ft) wide. She has a rectangular hull section, bluff bow and a counter-hung rudder, and is effectively the largest-size vessel which can pass through the Freycinet locks in France and Belgium. This corresponds to a potential loading capacity of 350 tons if loading to the maximum draught if 2.20m (a little over 7 ft).

In 1997, the cargo barge was converted to a hotel barge and underwent another refit in 2006. She was purchased by European Waterways in 2007. She was then taken to a boatyard in Belgium for inspection, maintenance and improvements. The hull has two wear strips welded outside the chine which mean the hard wear of rubbing against lock walls will be absorbed by this sacrificial steel strip.

Hotel barge[edit]

The barge was rechristened La Renaissance and began operations on the canals of western Burgundy and the upper Loire in May, 2008. She currently has 4 double cabins allowing her to carry up to 8 passengers. She also has separate crew quarters. The crew of five consists of captain and pilot, deck hand and tour guide, master chef, housekeeper, and waiter.[1][2][3]

She has a top speed of 10 knots, but usually cruises at the canal speed limit of 6 km/h.


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