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Oosterdam Cruise Review by jezzyebelle: Patience is Virtue


jezzyebelle
1 Review
Member Since 2011
30 Posts

Member Rating

Cabin 3.0
Dining 4.0
Embarkation 5.5
Enrichment Activities 5.0
Entertainment 4.0
Family & Children Not Rated
Fitness & Recreation 5.0
Public Rooms 5.0
Rates 4.0
Service 5.5
Shore Excursions 5.5
Value for Money 5.0

Compare Prices on Oosterdam Hawaii Cruises

Patience is Virtue

Sail Date: November 2011
Destination: Hawaii
Embarkation: San Diego

Our plan was to fly into San Diego on Friday night, 11/11/11, however due to flight issues, we ended up missing our connection in Atlanta and had to spend the night there and head to San Diego on Saturday, the 12th. We arrived in a very wet San Diego on time. We heard several times that it hasn't rained that hard there in several years.

Embarkation was a breeze as we visited with family and friends in San Diego until about 3 pm before heading to the pier. We were the only 5 people in line and was on the ship in about 15 minutes time after we got out of the car.

I knew going into this that Holland America was well known for their elder clients with many "life cruisers". What I didn't expect was for all of these elder people to be so rude. My husband (38) and I (37) were both raised to respect all people, including our elders, but these 14 days tested my patience on every level in dealing with fellow cruisers. We were forever waiting behind people with canes, walkers More and wheelchairs. They would cut in front of us in line, run into you with their scooters, push you out of their way, etc.


The staff on this cruise was the friendliest group of people I have ever encountered. We were treated like royalty in every aspect. One of the people traveling with us had questions about dinner and wanted some of this and some of that every night and our waiter put up with it with a smile every single night. What a trooper he was!

Our stateroom, 5115, was located pretty much mid ship so the location was great. The bed was very comfortable and the bed linens were very nice. The stewards kept our room and bathroom clean and stocked. There is storage under the beds for your luggage and drawers at the end of the beds for clothes.The closets are a good size. There is also storage space over the couch.

The room itself shows a lot of wear and tear. I guess I didn't expect this since the ship was just dry-docked 1 cruise prior to our sailing. The upholstery on the couch was very dirty, the "throw" pillows, should have been thrown away, the carpet was stained and the curtains were stained and torn. Don't get me wrong, I did expect a little wear and tear on the fixtures, etc, but I didn't expect to feel like I was staying in the no-tell motel when I paid for the Ritz. This however, did NOT ruin my trip. I have read many reviews from people who felt their entire trip was ruined because of these kinds of things. I am simply giving my observations as part of my review. One more thing, Ladies with thick hair, you might want to bring your own shampoo and conditioner. My hair never felt clean or conditioned using the ship's shampoo and conditioner.

The public areas of the ship are all very nice. The Vista Lounge is the only place that seemed cramped, but this was during the 8 o'clock shows. I imagine most of the folks attended that one because the 10 o'clock show was too late for them.

The casino is adequate, my husband played a lot of roulette, he was up and down the whole trip we think he ended the cruise about even. I too was up and down on the slots the whole trip, but ended up cashing out with some money to bring home!! I played in my first live cash game of Texas Hold 'em and did a pretty good job of taking the other player's cash home with me too.

The food in the Terrace Grill is good and always hot - hamburgers, hot dogs, Italian sausages, and fries. The breakfast in the Lido is EXCELLENT. There wasn't one day that I didn't enjoy breakfast. About the only thing I liked during the lunch hour was the sandwich bar. Any combination you can think of can be created. One disappointment for me was that they never had French dressing for the salad bar. We ate dinner at the Lido one evening and I did not enjoy it at all. I tried the pasta and Alfredo sauce and it was very "wet". No flavor at all, just wet noodles. The pizza is always good for a late-night snack. We ate at the free Italian restaurant, Cantenello, once and it was DELICIOUS. Dessert comes with a plate of cotton candy, which was a bonus! We also indulged at the for fee restaurant, Pinnacle, where I encountered the best tasting steak I have EVER had. There were five of us and we each had something different and every meal was great. Well worth the $25 per person cover charge. The sad part was that we were so full from dinner that we could not eat dessert. We had room service a couple of times - just cheeseburgers and club sandwiches. We knew going that there was usually a long wait for room service, but I don't think that we ever waited more than 30 minutes. There was always a good variety of food in the main dining room for dinner. The food mostly had a good taste and the presentation of the food was always exciting. I have two bad notes about the food in the MDR - the bread was always hard and the steak was never done. On 4 different occasions one or more of us ordered the steak well done and it came out, every time, still very pink in the middle and a couple of time still bloody. Beverages-- on previous lines we had fruit punch as a choice in the buffet, but on this cruise it was water or tea. I did not care for the tea, it is not fresh-brewed, it tastes like Nestea or something and it is lemony. I drank a lot of water, which is a good thing. I came home weighing 4.5 pounds lighter than when I started this journey!

The seas were really rough on our first day at sea - it seems like nearly everyone on board was sick that day. Then we had calm seas until we reached Hawaii and then on the way back, the first day at sea was calm and a picture perfect day, and the next three days were very rough. I have been off the ship for over 24 hours now and I still feel myself moving!! - Again these are just observations for anyone reading the review if trying to decide on this cruise. HAL nor the captain can control the weather or the seas.


We used the ship's unlimited laundry service (the Oosterdam does not have self-service laudry) It was $98 for our 14 day cruise. Well worth it; next time I can pack 1/2 as much!! (this is laundry only, dry cleaning is extra)

Hawaii was everything I dreamed it would be. I would love to go back and spend more time on each of the islands to see what we didn't see during this trip. We took HAL excursions in all four ports. I felt that three of them were well worth the money. The forth was just a motor coach drive to the beach, which, don't get me wrong, we LOVED the beach, but I think $64 a person is a bit much for that "excursion". We did have $100 shore excursion credit from our credit card company so I like to think that that particular excursion only cost us $28! We did not exit the ship in Ensenda Mexico because we had been there before and we were only docked for 3 1/2 hours at night...

Disembarkation was also a breeze. If you can get past all the people gathered at the gangway waiting to exit the ship. I don't understand why, if you're scheduled to exit the ship at 10 am, you are blocking me from exiting at 9 am when I am supposed to be exiting. Our luggage was right where they said it would be.

Overall we enjoyed this vacation.

If you do not enjoy long, leisurely days at sea, this is not the trip for you because you are at sea for a long time. If you do not have a ton of patience, this is not the cruise for you. This is not a "party" cruise line, it caters to older cruisers and they know it and take full advantage of their status in life. Less


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Cabin review: Oosterdam Deluxe Verandah Oceanview Verandah 5115

Our stateroom, 5115, was located pretty much mid ship so the location was great. The bed was very comfortable and the bed linens were very nice. The stewards kept our room and bathroom clean and stocked. There is storage under the beds for your luggage and drawers at the end of the beds for clothes.The closets are a good size. There is also storage space over the couch. The room itself shows a lot of wear and tear. I guess I didn't expect this since the ship was just dry-docked 1 cruise prior to our sailing. The upholstery on the couch was very dirty, the "throw" pillows, should have been thrown away, the carpet was stained and the curtains were stained and torn. Don't get me wrong, I did expect a little wear and tear on the fixtures, etc, but I didn't expect to feel like I was staying in the no-tell motel when I paid for the Ritz. This however, did NOT ruin my trip. I have read many reviews from people who felt their entire trip was ruined because of these kinds of things. I am simply giving my observations as part of my review. One more thing, Ladies with thick hair, you might want to bring your own shampoo and conditioner. My hair never felt clean or conditioned using the ship's shampoo and conditioner.

Port and Shore Excursions


(5.5)
Beautiful! Sky was overcast and we encountered a few showers. Below is the HAL description of our Shore Excursion Imiloa Astronomy Center & the Essence of Hilo A short journey along Banyan Drive takes you past Liliuokalani Garden--an oceanside Japanese park--as you tour historic downtown Hilo. You're headed to the beautiful Rainbow Falls, surrounded by a rain forest of mango, banyan trees, and African tulips. You'll stop at Big Island Candies, a famous Hilo landmark, where you can see delicious treats being made right before your eyes. Then, the highlight of your tour will be a visit to Hawaii's newest destination--the Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii. This fascinating facility explores and celebrates Hawaiian navigation and culture, including the modern journeys of exploration by today's astronomers on Mauna Kea. You'll experience a Full-Dome Planetarium Show including a live sky lecture featuring the sky as viewed from Mauna Kea. The Planetarium at 'Imiloa is the first in the world to have 3D stereoscopic capabilities, revolutionizing the planetarium industry. Our tour guide was great, very informative and personable.
Read 269 Hilo Reviews

Beautiful day - very sunny, no rain today. We did two tours this day. Great Value - well worth the money Below is the HAL description of our Shore Excursion Pearl Harbor History & Honolulu Visit the famous and infamous Pearl Harbor and the Arizona Memorial. At the Arizona Memorial Visitor Center, you will view a 20-minute film depicting the events of the 1941 Pearl Harbor attack and the aftermath. Then, you'll board a Navy launch for the short ride across Pearl Harbor to the memorial itself. More than 1,000 servicemen still lie entombed in the sunken USS Arizona. Following your visit to Pearl Harbor, you will embark on a tour of metropolitan Honolulu. You'll take in the downtown area and City Hall, as well as the authentic Chinatown district. Other sights include the Iolani Palace (the only royal palace on American soil), Kawaiahao Church, the impressive statue of King Kamehameha, the Hawaii State Capitol, the governor's mansion, and the quaint homes of the early missionaries. Experience the serenity of the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific as you drive through Punchbowl Crater. After the tour, there is an optional drop-off at Hilo Hattie's for shopping. Our guide was "ok" on this tour. The memorial is a very surreal place to be. Worth the money we paid for the Luau experience Paradise Cove Orchid Luau Buffet Complete your Hawaii experience with that most Hawaiian of dining pleasures--a luau. This popular Hawaiian-style beach party awaits you at a private 12-acre beach estate. Be ready for a sensational evening of traditional Hawaiian food, entertainment and fun. Set in a secluded cove, complete with native villages and a beautiful sunset, this luau location offers the true "aloha" spirit. Sip a cool mai tai beverage upon arrival and try your hand at various Polynesian arts and crafts. You may even be up for the challenge of Hawaiian games. Watch a hukilau and the enticing ancient Imu ceremony. Dance beneath the stars as you enjoy the marvelous island music and festivities. The buffet-style luau dinner consists of a bounty of delicious native foods that will be a welcome experience for even the most discriminating diner. In addition to your welcome mai tai, two standard cocktails and one premium cocktail are included for your enjoyment. My favorite part of the entire trip! The bartender was VERY generous with the booze in our drinks. Great show, all around good time.
Read 264 Honolulu Reviews

(5.5)
Windy day, overcast in some areas and bright sunshine in others. Worth the money we paid for the tour Below is the HAL description of our Shore Excursion Grand Canyon of the Pacific Experience one of Kauai's most popular attractions, Waimea Canyon--justifiably called the "Grand Canyon of the Pacific." From the lookout at 3,400 feet, you'll enjoy an unsurpassed view of the 2,857-foot-deep canyon and the surrounding countryside. The canyon's dramatic size combined with the reds and browns of exposed volcanic rock and the blues and greens of lush tropical vegetation truly create a magnificent sight. You'll also stop at Kauai's Spouting Horn blowhole before your return to the ship. After the tour, there is an optional drop-off at Hilo Hattie's for shopping. Breath-taking views. LONG drive to the destination, but the tour guide was very informative and kept us entertained for the whole trip
Read 236 Kauai Reviews

(5.5)
BEAUTIFUL - perfect day!!! This is the only excursion that I think is WAY over-priced. Yes, you get a beach chair and a free drink, but the drink is in a very small cup. Below is the HAL description of our Shore Excursion Enjoy a carefree morning or afternoon on famous Ka'anapali Beach, beginning with a short ride to Maui's luxurious beach resort area. Relax on a beach chair with a tropical beverage in hand. Lie in the sun, swim or beachcomb. Bring your snorkel gear or rent some (at your own expense) at the beach to enjoy the marine life at famous Black Rock. Air mattresses, boogie boards and other beach toys are also available for rent. After a few hours of fun in the sun, return to the ship by the transportation provided or you may choose to stay on the beach and arrange your own transportation later.
Read 262 Maui Reviews

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