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Entertainment Cruises Acquires Toronto-Based Mariposa Cruises

Entertainment Cruises, the nation's leading dining and sightseeing cruise company, announced the acquisition of Toronto-based Mariposa Cruises.

The transaction extends the company's footprint into Canada for the first time—boosting its operation to 48 vessels serving upwards of 2.3 million guests across 11 city locations in North America.

Recognized as Toronto's largest hospitality cruise operator, Mariposa Cruises has served the city's waterfront and Lake Ontario with dining cruises, sightseeing and private charters since 1987. Given its longstanding reputation, the business will continue to operate under the Mariposa Cruises brand and will remain headquartered at its home base in the heart of the Toronto harbor front, at the Queen's Quay Terminal Building.

"As a highly regarded business with an established reputation for quality on-water experiences, Mariposa Cruises perfectly complements Entertainment Cruises' portfolio. This is a natural and exciting step in our expansion strategy beyond the U.S.," said Kenneth Svendsen, CEO of Entertainment Cruises. "Both companies share a commitment to excellence and are deeply rooted in the guest experience and together they will be better able to achieve their combined vision in the Canadian market."

Svendsen will lead the newly merged company. With immediate effect, Mariposa Cruises President and CEO Jim Nicholson will step down and Cindi Vanden Heuvel—current Vice President and a 27-year veteran of the company—will step into the Vice President/General Manager position. With 128 full-time and seasonal employees joining Entertainment Cruises, the company intends to maximize benefits for both operations and leverage the significant expertise across the whole business.

"Entertainment Cruises' commitment to extraordinary experiences and relentless focus on quality is a great cultural and commercial fit for our business," Nicholson said. "We will benefit from a level of scale and scope that supports our ambitions, and better equips us for the future—more so than if we had continued to pursue a standalone path. I feel excited for Mariposa under their leadership."

The announcement reaffirms Entertainment Cruises' continued confidence in the sector where it already operates a portfolio of seven distinctive, award-winning cruise brands in coveted destinations such as Alexandria, Virginia; Baltimore, Maryland; Boston, Massachusetts; Chicago, Illinois; National Harbor, D.C.; Norfolk, Virginia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; New York, New York; Weehawken, New Jersey, and the wider Washington D.C. area.

In 2016, Entertainment Cruises acquired Virginia-based Potomac Riverboat Co. and has since added four new high-speed, low-wake, environmentally friendly water taxis to serve the D.C. metro area. Next month, Odyssey Chicago River—a modern, glass-enclosed vessel built specifically for cruising the Chicago River—is expected to make its much-anticipated debut and will introduce upscale dining and entertainment alongside unparalleled 360-degree views of the city's world-renowned architecture.

Learn more at Entertainment Cruises.

Entertainment Cruises is part of the PPC Partners group of companies.

Photo courtesy of Entertainment Cruises.

Courtesy of Groups Today.

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