We have sailed this ship on previous occasions. It was never a 5 star ship as claimed by Holland America. Until this most recent cruise aboard the Statendam, I should have agreed with the Cruise Critic rating of 3+ stars. Now 2 stars seems to be stretching a point.
Our cabin was not clean. Let me cite a few specifics: clots of hair on the glass shelf to the right of the wash basin. We requested that this be cleaned...after several requests and several days, all but one of the shelves was cleaned. The small tile on the bathroom floor was obviously dirty. Our bedspread had a number of brown soils on it. After several requests, this dirty blanket was removed from our room only to have the same dirty blanket placed back on the bed the following day as our "new, clean" blanket.
Throughout the ship, there was evidence of lack of maintenance. Covering torn off an elevator wall, missing tile in a men's room, gouges/scratches in the walls in the aisles leading to the cabins.
The food in the Rotterdam dining room has descended to the point that we ate only 3 meals in that room during a 16 day cruise. The gala Thanksgiving dinner was chewy turkey, uncooked yams and missing brussel sprouts. Most of our meals were taken in the Lido where the food was abundant and generally tasty. The exceptions were the deserts which looked beautiful but were too sugary and/or lacking in taste.
The movie selection was third or fourth rate. The live entertainment was unappealing save for one comedian and the ship's company of dancers.
Not enough periodicals in the library to read.
We used to enjoy our Holland America cruises but this one, our first since the line was taken over by Carnival, may well be our last.
As we departed the ship, we noticed people in wheel chairs stacked up on the fourth level unable to get to the third level to get off. We also saw people in wheel chairs on the third level wanting to disembark but with no personnel from Holland America to push their wheel chairs off the ship.
This is the first Holland America cruise where the cruise director pitched for "tips" for the crew members advising that giving tips is the universal way to say thank you although, of course, you don't have tot tip. So much for Holland America's vaunted and boasted about "no tipping policy".
The computers in the internet cafe seldom functioned properly and when one went to the front desk one was advised that only the person in charge of the computers could credit ones account. And so one had to wait around for that person to credit ones account for time spent on computers that didn't function. I never received an apology for the malfunctioning computer nor did I ever receive a smile from this party.
There were smiles aplenty from the rest of the crew including the charming head nurse who came to our cabin after my wife became ill from ill-prepared food.