This was our 12th cruise and our third on HAL.The Eurodam is a crisp new ship and makes HALs Vista class ships look a little shopworn. We chose a Deluxe Veranda for this cruise because of the length and the amenities. Having free dry cleaning and laundry makes packing for two weeks a lot easier. Suite guests also get to have breakfast in the Pinnacle Grill in the morning which is a very pleasant,quiet way to start the day.
What got my attention: It is nice to see HAL move into the 21st century and offer dining options. We were disappointed in the main dining room. The food was quite acceptable considering they are serving 2000+ of their closest friends every meal but the service was very spotty. As we opted for the open seating we had a different waiter and assistant every night. They all had different personalities and dispositions and I always had the feeling they were being overworked. Wine stewards were hard to come by and the wine list is somewhat limited unless you like wines from Washington state,
We found the same to be true of our cabin stewards. They always greeted us by name and with friendly hellos but it became obvious by the second day they had way to many cabins to do even in the high rent district.
We liked the bar staff. We found the cocktails to be well poured and fairly priced. Here's a tip: the $100 drink card for $90 is a heck of a deal if you enjoy drinks before dinner. The Ocean bar has two for one drinks from five to six every evening. Hi Richard!!! Room service was prompt and everything we ordered was always hot or cold as it was supposed to be.
What little of the entertainment we saw in the showroom was okay at best but I don't think it's fair to expect a broadway production on a cruise ship.
This was our first trip to Northern Europe and it was everything we had hoped it would be. The excursions were well organized and the buses were spotless. Except for St Petersberg!!! The bus was filthy. HAL needs to check out their providers more often.
In closing I will say my wife and I have been cruising for 20 years and we have lowered our expectations over the years. It is apparent the the cruise lines (all of them) are containing costs by cutting staff. They may tell they haven't but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see how things have changed in the last five years or so. Given all of that I still recommend HAL over all of the others.