Booked and got a good price on balcony cabin with some perks added. Embarkation was fairly easy, you got a number and the process moved smoothly. Our cabin was towards the rear of the ship and a good size for a standard balcony cabin. The ship was pretty easy to get around in once you figures out all the nautical terms: fore, aft, port, etc. We enjoyed use of the pools and hot tubs, the gym and (on a short Port day) had the best massage and facial ever! Our stewards were attentive, quick to respond (especially when we locked ourselves out of the cabin on the balcony) and left delightful towel"animals" each night. Meals were good, the additional price meal at the Pinnacle Grill was well worth the very reasonable expense. Service everywhere was very good and we have no complaints about the ship, staff or service. Everything ran quite smoothly, something I have come to expect from Holland-American as this is the 3rd cruise on HAL.
Ports of Call: Took only one HAL tour at Katakalon to Olympia. Excellent guide. Managed either by walking from the pier (Corfu) or taking public transportation (Dubrovnik and Piraeus/Athens) to get everywhere we wanted to go. In Santorini rented a car, smart move- got to the back beach and a fab winery as well as Oia with its whitewashed buildings with blue roofs. In Ephesus had arranged prior to sailing online thru Ertunga guides a tour with Emel (a professional guide , email@example.com) who picked us up at the pier and took us thru Ephesus and other nearby sites. Very knowledgable, very personable.
Our only disappointment was that in Sicily, Palermo was substituted for Messina and there was flooding in that area. Would have much rather gone to Messina!