We chose the Maasdam because this is the only cruise line servicing Montreal to Boston. According to our travel agent Holland was a top notch luxury cruise line. I hope you will read my entire review because I am trying to be fair but that could hardly have been farther from the truth.
Upon arrival we could see this is a small ship, built in 1993, which is a bit old and it showed with cracks and crevices running along the length of the ship. The passengers average 65 and up. Younger than us but we expected it. Definitely not for kids. The itinerary wouldn't have suited children either. Embarkation was fine. At times we were held up by a few wheel chairs, but we expected it and most people made light of the delays. We were surprised nobody offered hand sanitizer as we boarded, which we have seen on every other cruise with all the problems with the Norovirus.
We immediately went up to the buffet. Very charming. Seating was abundant. The food was delicious, maybe a bit bland, which catered to the crowd. We were never hungry! The mueslix was better than average.
The dining room was beautiful for an older ship. I have to say this was the one bright spot on the ship. Lots of windows and views from all around. Althought this was a very bumpy cruise and the crew did a good job keeping dishes on the tables. Another problem with an older ship-lacking stabilizers. We don't get sea sick so it didn't bother us.
The entertainment was good one night which is the same for every cruise we've ever been on. The magic show was very good. If he's on the next cruise we highly recommend seeing him. After that it was the cruise director and cruise music show which seemed to attract average crowds, although several people agreed the theater was bit warm.
The staff in general was okay. Nothing like we've seen on other cruises. There seemed to be a bit of a moral problem on this cruise. Never seen that before. We asked a couple of crew members how long they had been on the ship and they told us that some of the people just came from Carnival. That explained a lot.
The library was very good with lots of books and an audio program I loved. Unfortunately it was a bit noisy.
The worst part of our cruise was our cabin, which I will get into in the next section of my review.
The second worst part of the cruise was the weather. It rained the entire time, which we understand is normal for that region. That didn't discourage us from getting off the ship and walking around.
We were not terribly dissapointed but overall I would say this cruise was less than what we expected. If you have an opportunity to choose this cruise or an Alaskan cruise, by all means do the Alaskan cruise.