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Rotterdam Cruise Review by barbersson

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Member Name: barbersson
Cruise Date: November 2011
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
Destination: Panama Canal & Central America
Cabin Category: H
Cabin Number:
Booking Method: Local Travel Agency
See More About: Rotterdam Cruise Reviews | Panama Canal & Central America Cruise Reviews | Holland America Cruise Deals
Member Rating   2.0 out of 5+
Dining 1.0
Public Rooms 3.0
Cabins 1.0
Entertainment 1.0
Spa & Fitness 5.0
Family & Children Not Rated
Shore Excursions 2.0
Embarkation 3.0
Service 4.0
Value-for-Money 2.0
Rates 3.0
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Ship Facts: Rotterdam Review (by Cruise Critic!) | Rotterdam Deck Plans
Rotterdam Deserves a Plague Flag, Not a Flagship Designation
We finally got the air conditioning in the Dolphin Deck cabin fixed after complaining to ships customer service, officers, and finally by email to Stein Crus, the HAL CEO. While they were apologetic, and compensated us the equivalent of 1.5 days of travel, nevertheless, there were other uncorrected problems. The maintenance activities went on at 1:00 AM in the morning with staff coming and going through a doorway opposite our cabin and hammering and banging at odd nighttime hours. The AC went out again a day or two more intermittantly.

The ports we went to were mostly commercial container ports, and buses to get off the docks were not free.

The Lido Restaurant hot food was not kept thermally hot and the cold food served at the Lido Pool was not kept cold. This was after warning us that this was not sanitary, and should be avoided off the ship. By the 25th day we succumbed to problems, due to the passengers coughing into our faces or onto our food. The sneeze shields were not low enough. Passenger handling of food at the self-serve counters was also unsanitary. People would pick up items with their hands, then change their mind and put them back into the serving dish.

We had originally chosen this trip for the chance to go to Macchu Picchu. However, we declined to go because of the outrageous price for a 1/2 days visit to the site, much more than our total cruise cost. We would have done it independently,and actually priced it at 1/4 of the cost for the same accommodations, but were not convinced we would make it back to the ship. Rotterdam was repositioned from Lima to Pisco, 180 miles south, and local transport was only by bus and not reliable.

The cabin attendants dining room and spa staff were all excellent.

We thought that the quality of the food was lower than on the three previous HAL cruise ships that we took in the prior three years: Westerdam, Amsterdam, and Prinsendam.

The evening showroom entertainment was so-so. That is, while the staff singers and dancers were very good, the contracted entertainers were for the most part terrible. Not worth staying up for.

In all the best part of the trip was disembarking in San Diego, and spending 5 days there, before heading home to Columbus, Ohio, on Christmas Day.

Publication Date: 01/13/12
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