We loved the EURODAM! The ship was immaculate and the staff was very friendly. The ship was tastefully decorated and in excellent condition, extremely clean, and a pleasure to be on. There was a good mix of ages on the ship. Even though HAL tends older, there were quite a few families with small children. We are a couple in our early 50's and were looking for the best quality for the money. We found it on the EURODAM. The only real downgrade I will address was the dining.
Cabin VT 11010. Yes, we actually selected a Juliet balcony. It had the best outside view on the ship. We stood outside each time we entered and exited port. In addition, without the standard verandah partitions, we had an unobstructed view in both directions. It was very quiet because there were only 5 cabins in out hall. We booked a Retreat cabana on the Observation Deck which was only 15 steps from our cabin and loved it. It was the perfect pairing! There was plenty of storage with additional drawers under the bed and love seat. The room was spotless.
Fitness Center. It was excellent for a floating gym. Up to date Precor & Cybex equipment, free weights, spinning bikes, etc. It was crowded in the mornings. Afternoons were less crowded. It was great to jump on a machine and look out at the ocean!
The bars/lounges were very nice, but with the exception of the piano bar, were never crowded. The Explorer Lounge was always very cold. We stopped to listen to the string quartet, but it was too chilly to sit and enjoy the music. Yes, the casino & Sports bar were smoky. There was no shortage of lounges to sit and chat, dance, or just listen to the music. If you are a rap or hip hop fan you were out of luck, there was none ? The Lido pool area was always very warm with not much breeze even with the roof open. We spent no time there because it was not comfortable. The aft pool was much better, especially in port. There were plenty of outdoor spaces to sit and relax in the sun or the shade on numerous decks.
Wine. We brought our own with no problems. We were charged the $18 corkage fee in the dining rooms as advertised; every night. Some have mentioned they were not charged on formal nights or in specialty dining. We were. No big deal, we appreciated the opportunity to splurge on some better wines. Markup on board is about 3X what you pay in the store.
The weather was great even though we dodged hurricane Thomas the entire week. The ports were nice. We snorkled with a private company on Grand Turk and chartered a sailboat in St Thomas. We would do both again. Half Moon Cay is beautiful and very relaxing. Margaritaville on Grand Turk is like being on Spring Break complete with a "shake your booty" event. We avoided that atmosphere and relaxed at quaint "Jack's Shack" down the beach.
The crew was very friendly. The cruise director, Jason, was perfect for the job. The Captain was informative and did a great job. Our room was always neat and clean. Everyone was very helpful. Most crew spoke very good English.
Dining. The Lido could be described as chaotic. The food is good and there is a great variety, but the mechanics are broke. There are 2 main "hallways" for folks to move in both directions. It's like a highway with no lanes. There are no trays to carry your food, and with not being seated most couples sit at 4 person tables. You have to get your food and then struggle to find a table. Then you have to get your drinks. By the time you get back to your food it is cold. We only ate breakfast and lunch here a few times. We had freestyle dining for dinner in the Rembrandt and never had to wait longer than 5 minutes to be seated. The food was OK, not great, but the service was not good. We had to wait a long time for our entrees. The "Land & Sea" advertised as Filet and Prawns was really sirloin & shrimp. My Escargot was 99% mushrooms with 1 snail. The lobster was good as was most of the presentation. Breakfast in the dining room also suffered from slow service, but the food was great. There was no consistency in the coffee anywhere; strong, weak, and everywhere in between. The best cup I had was one I bought at the Explorer's Cafe. The Pinnacle and the Tamirand were both excellent and well worth the fee. We would definitely eat there again!
We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise. The ship was beautiful and very relaxing. Overall it was a very positive experience. We would definitely recommend this ship and itinerary. We enjoyed it so much we booked another cruise for next year!