This was a repositioning cruise to Auckland, New Zealand and was a first cruise to the South Pacific. We are veterans of 39 cruises and enjoy Holland American due to its exotic itineraries. This cruise went to Los Angeles (Really Long Beach), Honolulu, Oahu, Maui, Fiji, Vanuatu, American Samoa, Samoa, Ile De Pins & Noumea in New Caledonia and finally 4 ports in Northern New Zealand.
We had calm seas and we got the expected results from Holland American with some surprise. The food was the very best we have ever had on Holland American, although by the end of the cruise they were running out of everything. The crew and staff were excellent and one of the best I have ever encountered. Very Professional. They needed the experience since the ship really needed to be drydocked after coming out of the Alaskan cruise market with no chance for repairs. We always seemed to have 2 of the 5 ships engines not working and even a non working side thruster. Also coffee machines in the lido and multiple pieces of equipment in the Gym needed repair. To the ships crew I have to say you never noticed any inconvenience.
One problem that I had was the Mariner society. The rewards are clearly lacking and after 184 days at sea they dropped the ball. We were put in a lower category room then what we paid for and the one recognition event was a brunch at 11 am one sea day. This was ridiculous and surely timed to eliminate feeding us either breakfast or lunch so we skipped it. Also the tiles they give us I passed on again since it was just more weight to carry back home.
This was a good cruise and I would recommend this itinerary to anyone who has the time to handle this length of cruise and who can handle the return jet lag. It took us 5 sleepless nights to adjust to being home!