I have sailed over fourty times on all the major lines including Royal Caribbean 26 times and the newest and largest cruise ship in the world Allure of the Seas, Princess, Carnival, and Norwegian. This was my first time with Holland America and it was absolutely wonderful. Make sure you get a massage at the massage bar with Val and Sea Tac and have a snack at Ivar's in the food court on your way. I had a wonderful aft suite that had a huge balcony around the back corner of the ship. The bathroom had jacuzzi jets and dual sinks. This is the only cruise line to give you elemis bath products in the shower that is an absolute delight. Cheers to Holland for actually dividing out the garbage can to recycle paper. This is the first time in all of my cruises some actual recycling in the cabin. Hurray! They are also the first cruise line to lay down a floor mat for your way into and out of bed. Nice touch!
Room service in your suite was also the first time that the eggs had a warmer to keep them hot on the way to your room. I always enjoyed breakfast.
The shrimp cocktails are amazing the small and large. They do an egg sauce and calypso style not to be missed. They actually picked up salmon for the salmon bake by the pool. It was perfection. The lido buffet is full of wonderful choices. I am partial to asian flavors and everyday was a different rice and noodle dish along with beef and chicken dishes of the day. I find cruise ship beef to usually not be any good this was always delicious and tender. I had the pleasure of the head chef make me fresh pasta that he was going to have for dinner. It was amazingly full of flavors.
The main dining room is full of great choices from start to finish. The flavors are spot on and simply marvelous. I usually skip dessert and I tried so many this trip that just delighted me from start to finish. The rice pudding is so full of wonderful ingredients and complex that every bite is a new flavor sensation.
Happy hour daily in the ocean bar is your second drink for a dollar with hot appetizers. The marinated shrimp and meatballs are terrific.
Not to be missed the music in the explorers lounge just wonderful.
Tea time daily is full of great choices from cucumber sandwiches to sweat treats. Holland has their own tea that is great. High dutch tea is a whole new array of delights from cookies filled with almond paste to sausage in a puff pastry.
Do all your shopping in Ketchikan for the best deals especially at Tongass Trading Stores. Caribbean Gems is best for buying jewelry I am a repeat customer. Pick up the Alaska book full of deals right before you get on the ship. Sitka is a wonderful little village full of delightful people. I actually made it to two Ben Franklin craft stores this trip. Make sure you are outside on the balcony for the whole time coming to and from the glacier it will be your best scenery of the week. Order some room service and enjoy thew view. The service was terrific. The asst. dining room manager took such good care of us all the time. I felt so well taken care of. Why did I wait so long to sail Holland America?
Top 10 reasons to sail Holland America
1. Fresh squeezed orange juice for free at breakfast
2. Dutch high tea and a delightful daily tea
3. Wonderful service
4. They go to Sitka
5. The suites are spacious with two sinks and they recycle
6. Towel animals every day of the cruise and floor mats
7. The best chefs in the industry by far
8. They keep your eggs warm all the way to your cabin
9. They picked up fresh salmon from Alaska
10.Happy hour second drink one dollar and appetizers