Oosterdam Cruise Review by txmomofjandr: Wonderful first cruise to Alaska
Member Since 2013
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Wonderful first cruise to Alaska
We arrived in Seward a few days early and took advantage of the many amenities offered. Stayed at the Windsong Lodge, highly recommend eating at Chinooks, Used Exit Glacier Guides for a Helicopter Ice Hiking trip and did the 6 hour fjord tour.
Embarkation was absolutely painless. Took about 5 minutes just to walk through the cavernous building and get to the ship. There were no lines and we arrived around 4:00 p.m.
Our balcony room was great. Offered a full shower and spa level toiletries. My only complaint about arrival is administrative. We wanted to use the unlimited laundry feature and you had to go in person to the front desk to sign the paper. (Even though the ticket indicated a box you could check for that feature.) Then, if you wanted to drink anything in the mini fridge, you also had to go to the front desk to activate that feature!
Entertainment was good. Only made a few nights due to busy schedule on port days. Food was excellent. Service More excellent. We had a meet and greet from our Cruise Critic roll call which was lovely. Unfortunately, not very many showed up for that and the ship laid out teas, coffees and light snacks. In addition, we met the Captain and most of the heads of department for the ship that night.
One unsung gem that we completely enjoyed was the spa pass for the hydro whirlpool, heated/tile loungers and sauna. Totally worth the investment. We prepurchased a soda card at a discount...you can't use it for canned soda, only fountain. However they are also only $1.50 per drink, so the money went a long way.
We encountered some rough seas (typical) and bad weather (fog), but the captain was good to slow down when the sun came out or the fog cleared. The ship also did a great job bringing any whales/wildlife to our attention and slowed for us to watch as well.
We ate one evening at the Pinnacle Grill (Upcharge restaurant) and it was definitely worth the money. Our waiter even snuck us a small portion of one of the Vegetarian entrees for us to try. Dessert souffles were picture and taste perfect!
Small nightclubs and piano lounge seating areas. Wasn't uncommon for us to sit in a less desirable place and move to more desirable as people left.
Definitely an older crowd on the ship. There were some teens and younger children, but they were few and far between.
Excursions: Haines - Wilderness adventure safari, Eagle preserve float
Juneau - Taku Glacier Flight Seeing and Meal
Ketchikan - Snorkeling
I would give all of them excellent ratings.
Debarkation was smooth as well. Not the cattle call at the dock that I am used to seeing and experiencing. It appeared that passengers actually waited for the tag to be called before they left their rooms.
I would definitely sail Holland America again! Less
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Cabin review: Oosterdam 8143
Our cabin was nice and spacious. I do wish that there was at least one "chest" to place folded items. The closets feature fold down shelves, but that cuts into your hanging space. We had a rear balcony which was excellent; however, it also had a major flaw...each morning and occasionally at night, they hose down the deck above you and your balcony furniture is soaking wet. The toiletries are spa quality and the full shower was appreciated.