Pre Embarkation: We stayed the night before at the Hampton Inn in Vancouver which provided a free shuttle to the ship. It was a good hotel and we recommend.
My partner and I were some of the younger passengers on our cruise. We are 47 and 49 years old. I am gone from home a lot due to my job so we really enjoy vacations to relax and spend time together. We generally do not go to the shows and in ports we like to do our own thing. We always enjoy a table for two rather than a group. We both really enjoyed the all adult atmosphere and the peace and quiet to enjoy reading, relaxing, getting to spend time together, and seeing the beautiful scenery. We both agree that the Statendam was the best cruise we have taken yet. It was our first time on Holland America and we REALLY appreciated the kind, attentive service that the staff provided. The ship management should also be congratulated for organizing such a fine crew. They all really worked hard to make our vacation special. The dining was FANTASTIC!! We always like to go to the sit down restaurant as much as possible and dislike buffets. There were always numerous selections at all meals and the food quality was excellent. I must say we will seek out Holland America rather than to go back to Carnival or Royal Caribbean, not that they are not good, but we just discovered how much we loved Holland America, a better quality experience. The ship is smaller sized, but I never felt crowded as on the larger ships, plenty of space for everyone. The interior of the ship is in great shape, but the exterior is showing a bit of age such as permanently fogged windows in some areas and occasional rust spots. There were no problems with any bad smells or plumbing problems as some other reviews have expressed. I did notice that the sheets and towels, while clean, were very dingy and not bright white, but I'm being picky. Cleanliness throughout the ship is excellent. The bed was very comfortable and I'm a bit sensitive to that. The cabin was nice and spacious especially considering it was an inside cabin. The captain was great, very friendly and involved; we saw him several times. Overall I give Holland America and the Statendam an A. I can't wait to go again soon!
Post embarkation: I booked a shuttle outside the cruise line in to Anchorage with Alaska tour and travel, they were fine. My son is stationed at Fort Richardson and we stayed over another week to visit him.