Tauck World Discovery has announced that Kiki Tauck Mahar, daughter of chairman Arthur Tauck, Jr. and wife of CEO Dan Mahar, will serve as godmother to the company’s new MS Swiss Jewel riverboat when the ship is christened next month in Vienna, Austria.
The choice of his wife as the Swiss Jewel’s godmother was especially gratifying to Tauck CEO Dan Mahar. “I’m very pleased to see Kiki honored in this way, and her selection as godmother seems especially fitting. The Swiss Jewel exemplifies grace, spirit and hospitality,” said Mahar, “and I’ve always associated those same qualities with Kiki. And beyond her personal qualities, Kiki’s selection as godmother also touches on deeper themes that are at the very heart of our company.”
Mahar explained that the choice of his wife as godmother connects Tauck’s past, present and future. Kiki is the granddaughter of Tauck’s founder, Arthur Tauck, Sr., who launched the company in 1925. Her father, Arthur Tauck, Jr., currently serves as Chairman. “And as the mother of our five young children,” added Mahar, “Kiki has certainly helped provide candidates for the company’s next generation of leaders.”
Selecting Kiki also underscores the importance of family to the company – not simply the Tauck family itself, but also the larger extended family of Tauck guests, travel agents, and employees. “People feel a strong emotional connection to Tauck,” said Mahar, “and I think it’s because the values that drive our business are the same values so often learned within a family setting – things like integrity, fairness, respect and honesty.”
Mahar pointed to an example of how those values shape Tauck’s approach to business. “We were recently able to negotiate some generous pricing considerations from the hoteliers and other suppliers we use on our land journeys in Europe and Western Canada, reducing our costs on those trips,” said Mahar. “Not only are we passing those savings along to guests who book on those trips, we’ve also gone back and credited the same amount to those guests who had already committed to travel with us at the original, higher prices. Throughout Tauck’s history we’ve always tried to do the right thing, and we’ve earned tremendous customer loyalty in return.”
The 361-foot Swiss Jewel will accommodate a maximum of just 118 guests, compared to 150 or more on other similarly sized vessels. The ship has 59 outside-facing staterooms, including 14 luxury suites and seven junior suites (more than four-times the number of suites and junior suites typically found on riverboats). Each of the 14 suites has 300 square-feet of living space highlighted by floor-to-ceiling windows, walk-in closets and marble baths with full size tubs. Junior suites and cabins range from 150 to 183 square-feet, and all accommodations are well appointed with plasma TVs, mini-bars, terry cloth robes, radios, safes, individual air conditioning and L’Occitane toiletries.
Like its sister ships, the Swiss Sapphire and Swiss Emerald, the Swiss Jewel boasts two onboard dining options; the main restaurant for fine dining and a more casual Lido lounge for bistro-style fare. The ship also has a 24-hour Jacuzzi, lounge and wellness center. Along with a ship’s crew of 29, the Jewel has an onboard staff of three Tauck Directors and one Tauck Cruise Director to ensure superior service and attention to guests’ needs.