We chose the Eurodam for its ports of call and especially because we liked Half Moon Cay when we were there two years ago on the Nieuw Amsterdam. I realize that Holland America is geared toward older people but we really noticed a lot of 80 & 90 year olds this time round. Fortunately there were plenty of passengers our age as well and we certainly enjoyed the company of a number of them at breakfast once and dinner in the evenings. There were a few children on the cruise and they were very well behaved.
We found the ship to be in very good condition, except perhaps some of the deck chairs which are showing their age.
One thing we really missed was having a Cruise Director. We heard him over the public address system on embarkation day in the afternoon regarding muster and reminding people to wash their hands regularly and well, but we never saw him all week. We heard from him again on Wednesday or Thursday in the early afternoon, thanking people for their concern about his health. He had contracted the gastro-intestinal bug, as did I. (More about that later). Not having a Cruise Director really takes away from the enjoyment of a cruise. The first evening the ship's DJ provided some comic relief before the show started. He was hilarious actually. The second evening a lady who introduced herself as the ship's comedian introduced the show and the other two evenings that we attended, no one appeared on stage to introduce the show or make announcements. It was all done by a recorded voice. Very disappointing. We were very surprised that the Eurodam did not have an Assistant Cruise Director, or maybe they did and that person was sick as well. I was also disappointed with the entertainment. While the singers had lovely voices and the dancers were good, three shows in a row of singing and dancing is not enjoyable. Again on Thursday night it was more singing and dancing (I was out of Quarantine by then) so we didn't even bother going to the show on Friday night.
I have never washed my hands or used hand sanitizer as many times as I did on this cruise and still I got sick. I almost never use the handrail on the stairs unless it is really rocky and if we used the elevator we would press the button with our elbow or side of our hand. I washed my hands every time I returned to the cabin. Thankfully, I wasn't too sick, but I quarantined myself and eventually called the ship's infirmary and a nurse came up and gave me some pills which "stopped things up". Still you are quarantined for another 24 hours which I respected. Apparently not everyone who was seen by the medical staff did because an announcement was made that those people should get back to their cabins. I received a phone call 10 minutes later to make sure I was there. Unfortunately I missed out on lobster on the second formal evening. When I was allowed to leave the cabin a special team came in and "deep cleaned" the room (whatever that means).
We enjoyed most of our meals in the MDR and everything was tasty at the buffet. We had dinner the night before I got sick at Tamarind and it was lovely, but I'm not sure I'd spend the extra money again to eat there. The service was excellent. The girls are really sweet and the Executive Chef came out to make sure our dinners were alright.
We had been to these ports before - Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas and Half Moon Cay. St. Thomas is my favourite port and we had to miss it. Thank goodness we had a balcony cabin and I was able to at least sit outside and enjoy the beautiful day.
We really enjoyed listening to John, a guitar player/singer, in the Crow's Nest up on Deck 11 most evenings at 9:00 p.m. He was excellent. Not a lot of people seem to know about him. You will enjoy it if you go.
Given the very much older crowd on the ship this time, we will be cruising with Celebrity or Royal Caribbean for the forseeable future.
One other thing I should mention. I don't understand why the dining room staff serve afternoon tea in such an unorganized way. It seems they always serve the sweets first, then the sandwiches and lastly the scones. Seems to me it should be sandwiches, scones and sweets. That's the way it's done in England!