My previous three Holland America cruises had all been on the smaller ships (Ryndam, Volendam and Veendam). I was worried that what made HAL my favorite cruise line would be lost with the move to larger ships. As it turns out, I shouldn’t have wasted the time.
Our cabin, 5104, was on the Veranda deck right across from the stewards’ work room. I wouldn’t recommend this location because there were a couple of times when I was trying to sleep and could hear the stewards going in and out of the workroom and talking.
I think selecting something 2-3 rooms down would be better. Second, it appears our balconies are about a foot or so shorter than the ones immediately above us so I would select another deck.
Other than that, I thought the room was great. It was a bit tight with three adults, but we all had enough storage for our clothes and personal items. Although we thought it a plus to have the DVD player it was never used as there was plenty of new to us movies to watch without bothering to check out one.
The ship is beautiful and we enjoyed the art work throughout the vessel as well as the trademark fresh flowers.
Of course, the ship was festive with the holiday decorations.
The only negative I have is very minor and that’s that there wasn’t the day of the week mats in the elevators.
Our steward, Pongo, introduced himself to us right away and asked about our dining time. However, we found the first two nights they wouldn’t get to our room until after we’d finished dining. One call from my brother requesting earlier service took care of this issue.
The towel animals were cute but we didn’t have any room to save them. 🙁
Room for the chocolates were not a problem!
Our service in the dining room was fantastic for all three meals. On other cruise lines I have had trouble getting a coffee refill after we received our food. Not on this cruise; they came around many times! Now if only they could turn off those annoying bird sounds playing during breakfast.
My brother and I earned our 2 star Mariners pins this cruise. I have a lot of days between HAL, CCL and Princess collectively but not much individually so it’s nice to move up.