After a bidding process in 2012, the Niagara Parks Commission offered Hornblower a 30-year contract to be the only boat tour operator on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls. Hornblower Cruises and Events, which is based in California, has been in operation for 30 years and has more than 30 vessels in San Francisco, Berkeley, Sacramento, Marina Del Rey, San Diego, Long Beach, Newport Beach, and New York City. The Niagara Falls cruise will be Hornblower’s first tour in Canada.Although the company is American-owned, the 110-tonne, 26-metre catamarans, named Niagara Thunder and Niagara Wonder, and the smaller jet boat, named the Niagara Guardian were built off Lake Erie, in Wheatly, Ont., for $16 million. Each of the two catamarans hold 700 passengers, and include on-board amenities such as tiered decks for 360 degree unobstructed viewing, retractable glass nano-walls for dry viewing areas, on-board passenger washrooms and for evening and nighttime cruises an on-board licensed bar. The catamaran boats are powered by twin 350-horsepower Scania engines. The 145-passenger jet boat is powered by twin 350-horsepower jet-drive engines and is available for private charters, functions and events.