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Zuiderdam Cruise Review by server

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Member Name: server
Cruise Date: December 2012
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
Destination: Panama Canal & Central America
Cabin Category: N
Cabin Number: 7743?
Booking Method:
See More About: Zuiderdam Cruise Reviews | Panama Canal & Central America Cruise Reviews | Holland America Cruise Deals
Member Rating   3.0 out of 5+
Dining 3.0
Public Rooms 4.0
Cabins 4.0
Entertainment Not Rated
Spa & Fitness Not Rated
Family & Children Not Rated
Shore Excursions 4.0
Embarkation 3.0
Service 3.0
Value-for-Money 3.0
Rates 3.0
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Ship Facts: Zuiderdam Review (by Cruise Critic!) | Zuiderdam Deck Plans
Holland America did not do very well this time
Having been told that by HAL I could not book a transfer from FLL to the ship, it had to be done several days in advance, I descended the escalator at FLL and found 2 gents in red HAL shirts and purchased a ticket on the spot. The 2 people doing crowd control and security in the check in hall were really quite offensive, very mouthy, but without walking up to the young woman and staring at her upper torso I could not tell you if they were HAL or US government. If it was the latter that would explain a lot.

My bag was delivered to the wrong suite, I finally received it after 10pm, so I had had the same gear on since 4am. The water tank in our section failed, or whatever it is water tanks do when they are not happy, so I had no toilet until mid morning on the second day. A total of 5 calls did nothing more than bring a front desk clerk to check on my toilet. I'm not much of a Do It Yourself type, but I can recognise a jammed toilet when I see one. For breakfast I had 2 cold sausages, some cold bacon and cold ham, and never did use the Lido again for breakfast.

Canaletto was no more than average, and at $10.00 a visit certainly not worth it, when it was no more than a partitioned off section of the Lido, and HAL still have their senior crew dining in the Canaletto while passengers wait for a table and crew waiting in line for their food while paying passengers wait behind them.

I do not care to dine with the help. I know a young woman who worked for Princess. They do not do it. Do most other lines do it? Talking of the LIDO, still warm plates for my cold salad at lunch, just like the Veendam last January.

The incessant sales pitch by the waiters on the sundeck with drinks. No I do not want 5 beer before dinner, but thanks anyway. I tried in vain to have tonic water delivered to my suite, ended up buying it from the bar, so I told them to cancel the order, then the next morning the Room Service ignored my DND sign, telling me that Administration had insisted he deliver it. I received a plate of chocolate covered strawberries in an attempt to alleviate my annoyance.

I used the Lido on the 3 Formal nights. First time my used dishes were never removed, even though it was 8pm, second time none of the waiters ever even acknowledged me, so I never got a drink, but the Supervisor on duty and the 2nd Executive chef certainly heard from me, and the third time they were so servile it was an embarrassment. The Vista dining room was very hit and miss especially with the breakfast and dinner entrees and appetisers showing up missing ingredients listed on the menu. The only thing I did was roll my eyes.

The Mariners lunch was no big deal and I never saw the captain at the lunch.

My concerns about the delayed luggage and appalling service in the Lido were listened to politely and profuse apologies offered, but nothing else offered. There were, I think, 3 concierges, the 2 Western European, Dutch or Danes at a guess, both women, were really lacking in the smiling department.

Did I mention that we lost complete power about 6 am on day for about 30 minutes?. Didn't bother me at all, but I think a lot of folks were put out.

I think a lot of the the troubles stemmed from the fact that over 400 crew members were on their maiden voyage, so the gossip went, but should the passengers suffer for this?. Seemingly this delayed disembarkation because of their papers, but that may have been malicious gossip.

None of these events ruined my cruise, or came even close, although the toilets should work, but on a HAL vessel they should not occur. There was a lot of tacky nasty comments while we waited to disembark.

Publication Date: 05/11/13
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