We arrived at pier 91 in Seattle at Noon and were immediately met by a porter who promptly took our luggage. Despite the loading of a Princess ship at the same pier, the porters were clearly identifiable. The boarding process was very quick and we were in our rooms within a half hour of arrival at the dock. We were in Neptune Suite 7052 where a bottle of sparking wine awaited us. We went to the MDR for the Mariner lunch, where our waiter was also our regular waiter for our dining room seating. When we returned to our state room, all of our luggage arrived before 2pm. After unpacking, we paid a visit to the Neptune lounge to meet our very pleasant concierge.
Prior to the sail away, there was a safety drill on deck three after which we explored the ship. Amsterdam is a mid-sized ship with very nice public areas that never seemed crowded. I was apprehensive about the small size at first, but it was more than adequate.
I was very pleased at the size of the stateroom. My main negative would be regarding the noise from the deck above. The dragging of deck furniture was very much evident throughout the day.and early evening. I have a feeling that if the weather was rainy most of the time, it would have made matters even more difficult. It would have made enjoying the spacious balcony not too relaxing.
We chose second seating for dining and were not disappointed. Our two waiters did everything they could to make our dining experience exceptional. Once they knew our likes, special items were always ready for us when we arrived. We sat with friends at a table for 4. Extras were always provided when requested. For breakfast and lunch, we generally ate in the lido. We found the staff to be generally very helpful. A couple of times we tried the Dive In at poolside and were disappointed that the burgers and hot dogs came out cold. We had an exceptional meal in the Pinnacle Grill on the last evening. It was well worth the surcharge.
I found the entertainment in the Queen's Room to be mediocre at best. I thought the singers and dancers to be on the same level as many high school productions that I have witnessed. The entertainment in the ships lounges was of good quality. By the way, do you really need the shopping advisers?
This was my third Alaskan cruise, so I had been to all of the ports visited. I still found them fun and exciting. The trip through Tracey Arm was very beautiful.
Disembarkation was the smoothest we have ever experienced. We walked off the ship at 8am and were through immigration and in a taxi within 15 minutes despite the fact that there was another ship unloading at the same time. This was my fourth HAL sailing and I will certainly be sailing on Amsterdam again.