Westerdam Cruise Review by CommanderJoe: Westerdam - Fine for the Right Price
Overall Member Rating
Westerdam - Fine for the Right Price
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
Just off the Westerdam. Overall, OK. Advantages/Disadvantages with smaller ship. Limited energy on the ship due to the majority being older folks, but that is well known for HAL. Great rooms with large balconies. Generally well organized with fine service. Elevators readily available.
Food: OK in MDR and Buffet, perhaps a notch above RCI, etc. Go for the made to order items in the Lido Buffet. Pinnacle Grill a disappointment, offering a hunk of mystery meat which they called Filet Mignon, perhaps their other selections are better.
Entertainment: The song and dance shows as expected. Best entertainment was the BB King band. Greg in the piano room was quite good with a lot of audience interaction. If you appreciate classical music (and even if you don't) Adagio (a remarkable pianist and violinist) was spectacular in the Explorer lounge. At least stop by on the way to/from the MDR.
The magician and comedian were very good, but for some reason only one main show More each and a brief afternoon show by the magician. Really would have appreciated more comedy shows in the smaller venues.
Bars/lounges were mostly dead unless some special event (e.g. $3 Martinis)
Spa: More interest in selling products than providing quality service. Shoulder and neck massage given lying on back! - kept waiting for the turn around or sit up in chair part but never came.
Most ships' casinos are quite 'tight' but this one is ridiculous. Very tight slots - even the slot tournaments!! Most gave up on the slot machines early in the cruise. Not many poker players and when there were a few, the table took a 15% rake! The usual Blackjack tourney - they take in $2-3K and give a $500 prize.
Ports: Would recommend SNUBA in Grand Turk. Ship does not offer, but the private Segway Tour in San Juan was great! Segway Tours of Puerto Rico, firstname.lastname@example.org . Rented car in St Maarten (would only use Hertz). Found great secluded beach 'Sand Beach' just below Marigot. However, horrible traffic which limited exploring time. Would not rent again if only there for less than 8 hours or if multiple cruise ships. We thought Half Moon Cay was great - fantastic white sand, nice beach, a variety of other options.
Hint: take a couple boxes of Cheerios to throw in the water to attract friendly fish. Less
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Very nice cabin - lots of room and storage. Large balcony with table and 2 chairs, as well as 2 chairs with foot rests. Jacuzzi in bath. Just below the Lido pool, so could hear shifting of deck chairs occasionally, but not bad. No clock in room (guess those Neptune people took all those). Small ice bucket. Well-serviced.
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GREAT CRUISE WITH THE GAITHERS
Nice time on E. Caribbean