We at Avalon Waterways are happy to announce that head coach of the championship U.S. Women’s National Team, Jill Ellis, will christen our 11th Suite Ship® in Europe, Avalon PassionSM. The christening ceremony will take place on April 13, 2016 in Linz, Austria.
Why did we choose Jill Ellis to christen our newest Suite Ship? “As the head coach of the winning U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team and former development director of the U.S. Women’s Youth National Teams, Jill Ellis has a history of proving that with passion – and hard work – dreams come true,” said Patrick Clark, managing director of Avalon Waterways. “As someone who has shown great passion for, verve and vibrancy in cultivating women’s soccer, she is the perfect godmother to bless the Avalon Passion.”
Let’s get to know our Godmother, Jill Ellis:
- Jill Ellis grew up in Portsmouth, England before coming to the United States at age 15 in 1981.
- She also lived in Singapore for two years while her father helped to develop a national soccer program in that country.
- She was named eighth head coach in U.S. Women’s National Team history on May 16, 2014.
- In her first year at the helm, Ellis led the U.S. Women’s National Team to the Algarve Championship and the 2015 FIFA World Cup
- Prior to taking the reins of the U.S. Women’s National Team, Ellis served as the development director for the U.S. Women’s Youth National Teams.
- Ellis joined U.S. Soccer after a highly successful 12-year run as the head women’s soccer coach for the UCLA Bruins.
- Ellis lead UCLA to eight NCAA Final Fours, including seven in a row from 2003 to 2009, and won six straight conference titles from 2003 to 2008.
- She was the NSCAA National Coach of the Year in 2000 after leading the Bruins to the NCAA Final.
- Before UCLA, Ellis led the University of Illinois’ women’s soccer program and also served as the assistant coach at the University of Virginia, University of Maryland and North Carolina State.
- She also played soccer at the College of William & Mary from 1984 to 1987 and was a Third-Team All-American in 1987.
- Ellis resides in Palmetto Bay, Florida with her family.
Now, let’s get to know the Avalon Passion:
- It will contain 67 Suites, each measuring 200-square-feet, 30 percent larger than the average stateroom.
- After the christening ceremony, it will welcome travelers aboard to cruise the Danube River on such popular itineraries as The Legendary Danube, The Blue Danube Discovery, European Splendor and Grand Danube Cruise, among others.
- The ship stands at 443-foot and holds 166-passengers.
- This will be the 11th Suite Ship in Europe.
- Behind the bed, the wall is angled – a design innovation that opened up each stateroom and bathroom, exclusively giving Avalon travelers more space and better views.
As with all other Suites Ships, this ship will offer two full decks of suites with Open-Air Balconies®: Floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall windows that open 7-feet wide and can be enjoyed any hour of the day, year round, without compromising room space.
- The beds in the Suites face the windows – and the incredible sights river cruising is famous for, offering travelers a unique point-of-view: One where the view is the whole point.
Exclusive behind-the-scenes pictures of Avalon Passion
The Avalon Passion is still a work-in-progress, but we wanted to share some exclusive photos of the ship’s development:
To view the press release announcement, click here.