PS Simplon

Lake Geneva

photo: Robert Horlacher
Date entered service -- 1920
Length -- 78.5m
Breadth -- 15.9m
Major re-builds -- 1968 and 2005
Passenger capacity -- 1,000 (originally 1,600)
normally operates the Geneva to Lausanne/Evian-les-Bains and return sailings 102-1113-1114-107
 
14th October 2016 Last public sailing of the season
Following the end of the summer season, the paddle steamer was used on the Lausanne to Evian-les Bains ferry run vice the regular motor vessel finishing with the 2045 sailing 1122 from Evian-les-Bains on Friday 14th October
4th June 2016 Rolle Belle Eopque 1900 Weekend
The paddle steamer operated the 1045 sailing 421 from Lausanne vice the regular motor vessel to provide additional capacity and to be more in keeping with the event on both Saturday 4th June and Sunday 5th June
24th April 2016 First public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer opened her season on Swiss Navigation Day to provide additional capacity on the 1015 sailing from Geneva instead of the smaller mv Henry-Dunant on Sunday 24th April
 
18th October 2015 Last public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer continued in service throughout the autumn and finished service on Sunday 18th October by operating sailings 120-121 from Geneva to Lausanne-Ouchy and return
24th June 2015 The paddle steamer broke down (with a defect in a part of the lubrication system which has damaged some parts of the engine) at Nyon whilst working sailing 102 from Geneva on Wednesday 24th June where the sailing was terminated - passengers for Yvoire were transferred to mv Valais and mv Col-Vert
She later made her own way to Ouchy dock for repairs and her sailings on Thursday 25th June were initially covered by the much smaller mv Henry-Dunant

She subsequently returned to service operating sailing 107 on the afternoon of Wednesday 22nd July
24th May 2015 Naval Parade
Took part in the annual pre-season naval parade off-Rolle on Sunday 24th May
26th April 2015 First public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer opened her season on Swiss Navigation Day and provided additional capacity on the 1015 sailing from Geneva instead of a smaller mv Henry-Dunant on Sunday 26th April
 
7th September 2014 Last public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer finished service at the end of the summer timetable and operated hre regular the 1015 sailing from Geneva to Lausanne and return on Sunday 7th September
25th May 2014 Took part in the annual pre-season naval parade off-Vevey on Sunday 25th May
27th April 2014 First public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer provided additional capacity on the 1015 sailing from Geneva instead of a smaller MPV Vevey for Swiss Navigation Day on Sunday 27th April
 
4th October 2013 Last public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer closed her extended her season on Friday 4th October by operating two round trips to Château-de-Chillon followed by the peak evening ferry service to Thonon-les-Bains
28th April 2013 First public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer opened her season on Swiss Navigation Day and provided additional capacity on the 1015 sailing from Geneva instead of a smaller motor vessel on Sunday 28th April
 
21st Octber 2012 Last public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer remained in service until the end of the autumn season and operated the 1015 sailing from Geneva to Lausanne and on Sunday 21st October
29th April 2012 First public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer opened her season on Swiss Navigation Day and provided additional capacity on the 1015 sailing from Geneva instead of a smaller motor vessel on Sunday 29th April
 
11th September 2011 Last public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer finished service at the end of the summer timetable and operated the 1015 sailing from Geneva to Lausanne and on Sunday 11th September
5th June 2011 First public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer took part in the pre-season Naval Parade on Sunday 5th June
Summer 2011 Spent all the summer season on the 1015 Geneva to Lausanne/Evian-les-Bains sailings commencing Whit Sunday 12th June
11th September 2011 Last public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer operated her regular 1015 sailing from Geneva on Sunday 11th September
 
2010 The paddle steamer undertook a major re-build
 
12th September 2009 Last public sailings of the season
The paddle steamer returned to service specially on Saturday and Sunday 12th and 13th September and operated her regular peak-summer sailings sailings 100-713-714-105 from Geneva for the Journées européennes du patrimoine
31st August 2009 Last regular sailings of the season
Her planned season was cut short at the end of August and her place on the Geneva to Lausanne and Evian-les-Bains run was covered by the smaller mv Général Guisan - it is understood this was simply an economy measure
9th June 2009 The paddle steamer broke down at Lausanne after working sailing 100 from Geneva on Thursday 9th July resulting in the smaller mv Chablais covering for 26 hours
She returned to service at 1535 with sailing 105 on the following day

See news page for further details
Summer 2009 Spend the whole of the summer season on the 1015 Geneva to Lausanne/Evian-les-Bains sailings commencing Sunday 14th June then daily until Sunday 13th September
26th April 2009 First sailings of the season
Swiss Navigation Day

Operated the popular 1015 Geneva to Evian-les-Bains and return sailings 110-111 along the French coast on Sunday 26th April
 
30th October 2008 Last public sailings of the season
The paddle steamer along with sister PS Savoie operated a special "Evening Dinner Fundraising Cruise" for the laid-up MPV Italie from Geneva on Thursday 30th October
14th July 2008 Operated the first of several evening Fireworks Cruises from Lausanne on Monday 14th July
9th June 2008 The paddle steamer broke down shortly after leaving Rivaz/St-Saphorin on sailing 922 on Monday 9th June whilst operating the afternoon sailing 922 from Lausanne to Montreux - she was able to continue with some delay after "on the spot" repairs
See news page for further details
Summer 2008 Spend the whole of the summer season on the Lausanne to the Upper Lake Haut-Lac Express sailings commencing Sunday 1st June then daily until Monday 22nd September
The greater use of the large paddle steamer in 2009 was due to her sister PS La Suisse being out of service for a major re-build
25th May 2008 Took part in the pre-season Naval Parade on Sunday 25th May off-Vevey
27th April 2008 First sailings of the season
Swiss Navigation Day

Unusually operated the 1000 Geneva to Evian-les-Bains and return sailings 300-301 on Sunday 27th April - this was a rare oppurtunity to sail along the French coast by paddle steamer between Yvoire and Evian-les-Bains (a regular route until September 2005
 
31st October 2007 The paddle steamer remained active operating some private charter sailings
On her final day, it was planned she should "support" the naming ceremony of the new Navibus mv Genève - unfortunately she came into contact with the wall adjacent to Geneva Mont Blanc pier in strong winds on Wednesday 31st October and damaged her bow - apparantly taking on board some lake water
Fortunately an internal bulkhead prevented it spreading into the ship's engine
Repairs were made over the winter
30th September 2007 Last public sailings of the season
The paddle steamer operated the six timetabled "Honneur à la vapeur" mini-cruises from Geneva on Sunday 30th September each of which made rare calls at Bellevue pier
4th September 2007 Collided with the fenders at Geneve Pâquis on a stormy Tuesday 4th September as she arrived for a charter sailing and sustained a hole in her hull over the waterline
Her subsequent charter sailings were covered by her sister PS La Suisse for the next couple of weeks - see also news page
8th July 2007 The paddle steamer broke down twice on sailing 201 on Sunday 8th July with generator problems - after departing Montreux approximately 30 minutes late, she sailed direct to Lausanne
In consequence the lunchtime Haut-Lac Express sailings 202-203 were cancelled but quick repairs ensured a return to service with the 1530 Lausanne to Montreux and return (sailings 922-923)
See news page for further details
Peak Summer 2007 Operated the Lausanne to the Upper Lake Haut-Lac Express roster which in 2006 (and early/late summer 2007) was operated by her smaller sister PS Rhône commencing Sunday 1st July until Sunday 2nd September
6th April 2007 First public sailings of the season
Following a late change of rosters, the large paddle steamer opened the season on Good Friday 6th April and operated the new spring period Lausanne - Montreux-Château-de-Chillon sailings over Easter followed by weekends only for the remainder of the month
 
3rd September 2006 Last sailings of the season
Operated sailings 101-304-882-886 on Sunday 3rd September
Peak Summer 2006 The large paddle steamer spent the whole of the peak summer season in timetabled service (rather than just the main school holiday period) operating a round trip from Lausanne to Geneva and back every day
Early Summer 2006 The large paddle steamer spent the early summer season in timetabled service operating the short Geneva based local cruises from Ascension Thursday 25th May until her smaller sister took over for the Peak Season at the start of July
21st May 2006 First public sailings of the season
Took part in the pre-season Naval Parade on Sunday 21st May
 
11th September 2005 Last public sailing of the season
Journées du patrimoine
Operated a special excursion from Geneva to Lausanne-Bellerive on Sunday 11th September in connection with the CGN Works 'open day'
17th July 2005 Took over the "2 Day Roster" along the full length ot the lake from mv Henry-Dunant commencing Sunday 17th July and continued longer than originally planned until Tuesday 16th August (missing just Monday 8th and Tuesday 9th August for minor repairs)
2nd July 2005 First public sailings of the season
Operated four "thank you" cruises from Lausanne on Saturday 2nd July for those who contributed to her repairs - a lunch cruise followed by two short mini-cruises ending the day with a 'one-way' Evening Dinner Cruise from Lausanne to Geneva
Similar cruises operated from Geneva on the following day, returning to Lausanne in the evening

Prior to the weekend, commencing Wednesday 15th June, there were a few pre-season private charter cruises mainly from Lausanne
 
2004 A boiler inspection confirmed that the boiler is re-usble - the CGN have announced that most of the necessary money to return the paddle steamer to operational status has been raised thanks largely to the fundraising efforts of the ABVL
The paddle steamer spent the first half of 2004 (until Monday 12th July) in the covered dock at Ouchy and was subsequently moored in the harbour where repair work continued outside
 
18th August 2003 Shortly after leaving Geneva at 1015 on Monday 18th August the paddle steamer suffered an explosion which forced an immediate withdrawal from service
See also photo feature
10th to 28th
August 2003
"Weeks of the Simplon"
The paddle steamer was planned to operate timetabled sailings 36-91 or sailings 80-191 along the full length of the lake instead of the smaller PS Savoie from 10th to 15th August and 17th to 28th August
This arrangement terminated on Monday 18th August immediately after the start of sailing 80 - see item above
9th August 2003 The paddle steamer operated an evening
fireworks cruise
from Yvoire to Geneva (Fêtes de Genève) on Saturday 9th August
29th May to
3rd June 2003
"G8 Summit" at Evian-les-Bains
Operated special ferry sailings from Lausanne for journalists and other officials attending the conference
1st May 2003 First sailings of the season
Operated timetabled sailings 33-50 on Thursday 1st May - 1015 ferry from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains and 1100 return instead of the "flagship" mv Lausanne which had broken down
 
5th September 2002 Last public sailing of the season
Operated the annual special sailing from Lausanne depart 0915 to the 525th Thonon-les-Bains Fair on Thursday 5th September
21st August 2002 Last timetabled sailing of 2002
Operated the 'small lake' sailings 92-174-99-214-205 from Geneva on Wednesday 21st and Thursday 22nd August vice PS Rhône which had broken-down again
17th August 2002 Operated the final evening disco cruises from Geneva on Saturday 17th August
11th to 15th
August 2002
"Week of the Simplon"
The paddle steamer operated timetabled sailings 36-91 or sailings 80-191 along the full length of the lake instead of the smaller PS Savoie between 11th and 15th August
10th August 2002 The paddle steamer operated an evening fireworks cruise from Yvoire to Geneva (Fêtes de Genève) on Saturday 10th August
26th July to
17th August 2002
The paddle steamer commenced a short season of (mainly dicso) evening cruises from Geneva on Friday 26th July
12th May 2002 Fifth public sailing of the season
The paddle steamer took part in the six paddle-steamer pre-season publicity "Le Carrousel de la Harpe" Naval Parade from Rolle on Sunday 12th May
28th April 2002 Fourth timetabled sailing of 2002
Swiss Navigation Day

Operated timetabled sailings 33-50-64-155 - 1015 and 1230 Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains then St-Gingolph and return (respectively) on Sunday 28th April instead of PS Rhône which had broken down on Sunday 7th April
21st April 2002 Third timetabled sailing of 2002
Operated timetabled sailings 33-50-64-155 on Sunday 21st April - 1015 and 1230 Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains and St-Gingolph respectively - as a result of the accident to MPV Vevey on Friday 12th April
14th April 2002 Second timetabled sailing of 2002
Operated timetabled sailings 30-91a-80b-191 on Sunday 14th April - 1000 and 1400 Lausanne to St-Gingolph and return - instead of PS Rhône which had broken down the previous Sunday
13th April 2002 First sailings of the season
Entered service much earlier than normal and operated timetabled sailings 80b-191 on Saturday 13th April - 1400 Lausanne to St-Gingolph and 1635 return - as a result of the accident to MPV Vevey the previous day
 
6th October 2001 Last public sailings of the season
Operated the first of a new series of Autumn Taverne Alsacienne Cruises from Lausanne on Saturday 6th October
15th August 2001 Operated timetabled sailings 80-191 on Wednesday 15th August vice PS Savoie - 1015 Geneva to St-Gingolph and 1700 St-Gingolph to Lausanne
14th August 2001 Operate timetabled sailings 36-91 on Tuesday 14th August vice PS Savoie - 0930 Lausanne to St-Gingolph and 1150 St-Gingolph to Geneva
5th July 2001 The first of a series of regular Evening Salsa and Dance cruises took place on Thursday 5th July
19th May 2001 Return to service of PS Montreux after major rebuild
Second public sailing of 2001 on Saturday 19th May
"Steamer Parade"
29th April 2001 First public sailings of the season
Operated timetabled sailings 33-50-64-155 on Sunday 29th April vice mv Henry-Dunant - 1015 from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains and 1100 return also 1230 to St-Gingolph and 1500 return
 
16th September 2000 The paddle steamer took part in a special emergency 'rescue exercise' conveying passengers from Montreux at 1100 on Saturday 16th September
See also the special photo feature
7th September 2000 Last planned public sailing of 2000 was a special sailing at 0915 from Lausanne to the 523rd Thonon-les-Bains Fair on Thursday 7th September
31st August 2000 Last minute substitution
Operated timetabled sailings 47-112-179-176-175-202-199-234 on Thursday 31st August vice mv Henry-Dunant - 1115 from Lausanne to Yvoire and return followed in the afternoon by the 1510 "clockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and two ferry runs from Lausanne at 1815 and 1935 (the latter continuing to Thonon-les-Bains)
9th August 2000 Last minute substitution
Operated timetabled sailings 65-76-95-173-177-218 on Wednesday 9th August vice PS Rhône - 1230 "lunch cruise" from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains followed in the afternoon by the 1415 "anticlockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and the 1820 evening cruise to Yvoire and 2015 return
(PS Rhône was covering for PS Savoie which was in Ouchy works for repairs)
8th August 2000 Last minute substitution
Operated timetabled sailings 65-76-95-173-177-218 on Tuesday 8th August vice PS Rhône - 1230 "lunch cruise" from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains followed in the afternoon by the 1415 "anticlockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and the 1820 evening cruise to Yvoire and 2015 return
(PS Rhône was covering for PS Savoie which was in Ouchy works for repairs)
5th August 2000 On Saturday 5th August operated an evening fireworks cruise from Lausanne to Geneva
2nd August 2000 Last minute substitution
Operated timetabled sailings 47-112-179-176-175-202-199-234 on Wednesday 2nd August vice mv Henry-Dunant - 1115 from Lausanne to Yvoire and return followed in the afternoon by the 1510 "clockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and two ferry runs from Lausanne at 1815 and 1935 (the latter continuing to Thonon-les-Bains)
17th July 2000 Operated timetabled sailings 65-76-95-173-177-218 on Monday 17th July vice PS Rhône - 1230 "lunch cruise" from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains followed in the afternoon by the 1415 "anticlockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and finally the 1820 evening cruise to Yvoire
14th July 2000 On Friday 14th July operated an evening fireworks cruise from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains
8th July 2000 Operated timetabled sailings 47-112-179-176 on Saturday 8th July vice mv Henry-Dunant - 1115 from Lausanne to Yvoire and return followed in the afternoon by the 1510 "clockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake
4th July 2000 Last minute substitution - operated timetabled sailings 47-112-179-176-175-202-199-234 on Tuesday 4th July vice mv Henry-Dunant - 1115 from Lausanne to Yvoire and return followed in the afternoon by the 1510 "clockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and two ferry runs from Lausanne at 1815 and 1935 (the latter continuing to Thonon-les-Bains)
30th June 2000 Last minute substitution - operated timetabled sailings 65-76-95-173-175-202-199-234 on Friday 30th June vice mv Général-Guisan which had propeller problems - 1230 "lunch cruise" from Lausanne to Evian-les-Bains followed in the afternoon by the 1415 "anticlockwise" sailing round the Upper Lake and two ferry runs from Lausanne at 1815 and 1935 (the latter continuing to Thonon-les-Bains)
 
1st July 1999 Operated timetabled sailings 47-112-179-176-175-202 throughout July and August 1999
 
1st July 1998 On standby at Lausanne (Ouchy) - operated vice PS Savoie when the smaller paddle steamer was on charter
 
August 1970 Mainly on standby at Lausanne (Ouchy)
Only operated 7 days in public service -
sailings 21-46-51-70 (5 days) vice PS Savoie on Mondays 2nd and 16th, Thursday 19th, Saturday 27th and Wednesday 31st August also sailings 25-36-33-65-69-76 (2 days) vice PS La Suisse on Thursday 25th and Friday 26th August when these steamers were on private charter sailings


Return to PS Fleet Summary Page
Return to PS Fleet Details Page
Return to Lake Geneva Current Timetables Index
Return to Lake Geneva Archive Timetables Index
Return to Paddle Steamer Timetables Index
Restore Frames



Can you help?

Updated - Lakes Brienz, Geneva, Luzern, Thun, Zurich, Konstanz, Maggiore, Como, Garda 2nd February 2017   e-mail   (c)1999-2017 John B Bird