In 2015, the Aria Amazon, which first set sail in 2011, was completely refreshed with new upgrades from bed linens to state-of-the-art lighting. The 45 meter (147 foot) long Aria was designed by the innovative Peruvian architect Jordi Puig.
Extremely generous dining and lounging areas include an outdoor river-facing Jacuzzi. Floor-to-ceiling windows face the Amazon River in the ship’s 16 Design Suites, each measuring 23 square meters (250 square feet). Four suites can interconnect for families. Upgrades to the spa include new decor for enhanced relaxation.
Aqua Expeditions highly experienced river pilots and the most rigorous cruise ship standards ensure smooth travel and safety on the waters of the Peruvian Amazon.
Many days on the Amazon River reach scorching temperatures with high humidity. While our skiffs pick up cooling breezes and all our suites are air conditioned, upon returning from a day out on the water, our guests often make their way up to the Observation Deck’s outdoor Jacuzzi, an ideal way of cooling off while watching pink river dolphins cavort and sipping a cooling pisco punch. Even in low water season, the top third level of the Aria Amazon, known as the Observation Deck, showcases the ship’s most compelling vistas capturing the river’s dark hues, the verdant spectrum of wildlife and local life on shore and the cerulean sky above the tree canopy. Enjoy a jacuzzi to cap off your day spent on a riveting shore excursion photographing spectacled caimans, fishing for piranhas or trekking among soaring kapok trees encircled by strangler figs.
Enter this natural, timeless world of undulating strangler vines wrapped around ancient ficus trees and brilliant bromeliads that pop against the jungle’s spectrum. Parrots call out from the dense tree canopy, squirrel monkeys play all day, and pink Amazon dolphins roll their dorsal fins above the dark waters as neon-brilliant colored tanager, kingfisher and oriole birds soar across the clear cerulean sky.
Hearts of palm soufflé, scallops with wild almonds and umari fruit, plantain and yucca gnocchi, escolar fish in aji panka chili adobo, grilled paiche with Amazon huatia potatoesare just some of the regional delicacies created by Aqua Expeditions Amazon Executive Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino. Schiaffino has earned global recognition, including from The Diners Club® World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy, for his innovative Amazonia-influenced cuisine, served at Malabar and Amaz, two of his top-ranked Lima restaurants, as well as on board the Aria Amazon.
Though Peruvian cuisine has made its way around the world, many of Schiaffino’s obscure yet delectable ingredients grow only the Amazon jungle. He has spent years studying the cooking traditions and food resources of Amazonia, working beyond the kitchen with anthropologists and environmental scientists. The Lima based chef returns often to go even deeper into this dense jungle in search of the next sustainable ingredients he’ll incorporate to create original recipes for Aqua Expeditions guests on the Amazon.
Schiaffino says around 70% of all ingredients on board are sourced in the waters and rainforest surrounding our journey, but guests may rest assured that dishes also stay true to more accessible indigenous traditions like Peruvian ceviche, with its succulent tranches of just caught river fish, juicy onions, cilantro, coriander and corn kernels the size of South Sea pearls.
Off-ship excursions into the Amazon jungle from the Aria Amazon showcase the unique Amazon wildlife, birds and plant life of this rich habitat. Aqua Expeditions customized aluminum motorized launch boats, or skiffs, take up to eight passengers in each on two to three daily excursions deep into Amazonia’s snaking tributaries, in search of armored catfish, red bellied piranhas, and the beady-eyed heads of spectacled caimans in the enigmatic black waters. Just as captivating is the scene above water where yellow spotted Amazon River turtles meander along the muddy shoreline, sapphire blue beaked Amazon kingfishers streak past and antediluvian prehistoric hoatzin birds alight on high branches near dusky Titi monkeys playing in the tree canopy.
All 16 Design Suites on the Aria Amazon across the first and second deck measure 23 square meters (250 square feet), with individual air conditioning, polished timber flooring and a wall of floor to ceiling glass facing the Amazon River. En suite bathrooms with rain shower and organic bath amenities incorporate the latest eco-sensitive technology.
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