I had read with caution the recent cruise stories and reviews for the Zaandam but I must say it was truly a pleasure to sail on her last week. The ship has been refurbished and we had zero problems with maintenance during our cruise.
The embarkation process in San Diego was one of the easiest and fastest I can remember. We literally were able to walk right up to the cruise agent, turn in our paperwork, get our room keys, walk up the gangway, enter the ship and be shown right to our freshly cleaned cabin within about 10 to 15 minutes!
We dropped off our things and headed right to the Lido for some lunch which was already in full swing.
As noted on many previous reviews the carpeting throughout the ship has been replaced and otherwise the ship and furnishings have been refreshed tastefully.
I was very happy with the number and condition of the public areas on this ship and found them all to be very comfortable and almost never crowded at all.
The first few days service in the main dining room was quite slow and not as attentive as it should have been but that was due to the diversion of staff to the Lido for that first 48 hours to combat the spread of viruses. After that things improved and the servers were always friendly and helpful even if a bit overwhelmed at the beginning.
Throughout the ship the staff and crew were always eager to assist us with anything and always smiling and saying hello regardless of where we ran into them. We personally met the cruise director, Michael Headla and the events coordinator, Kelly at one of the meet and greet events on the second day. They were extraordinarily gracious and helpful and from that day on they were always smiling, waving and addressing us by our names as if they had known us forever.
The food was quite good, typical I suppose of the other cruises I have been on. Sometimes the food was 5-star and at others sort of bland and uninteresting but again I find that typical. Both the main dining room and the Lido Buffet carried a good selection to suit almost anyone.
The entertainment was great and the performers worked hard to make everyone have a great time. The comedienne Chris Pendleton and the pianist Joel Mason were a real treat and we were able to see them both perform twice during the cruise.
Overall the cruise was wonderful, restful and just what was needed. If that's what you need then I would highly recommend this cruise.