Hubby and I chose this cruise because I could participate in a knitting class on sea days. We'd sailed HAL five times before, two of them political theme cruises and discovered we like being part of a small group on the ship. We love HAL and this trip did not disappoint.
Staff was cheerful, accommodating and helpful. The Westerdam seemed to be in tip top shape. Dining was excellent as usual and the Le Cirque night at the Pinnacle Restaurant was flawless. Our dining room waiter learned early on that we love creme brulee and had it available for us every night. We ate lunch in the Vista Dining room when it was available and were never disappointed. We were told the ship was full, but areas like the pool and the Lido buffet never seemed crowded.
It was too windy to tender to Half Moon Key, not a problem for us as we're not beach people. Leaving the ship at the end of the cruise was the easiest and fastest we've ever experienced.
Minor quibbles: our cabin was one of the most cramped we have ever been assigned, music on the ship, particularly at the two pools and the Crow's Nest seemed overly loud to me, dressing for dinner sure has changed in the two years since we last cruised--formal nights seemed like the smart casual of the past and regular dinner nights are extremely casual. I may be showing my age, but hubby and I like to dress up a bit for dinner. He was one of the few men wearing a sport coat on regular nights. Another minor disappointment: we waited too late in the cruise to book a dinner in the Canaletto Restaurant and could not get a reservation--we'll do that right on boarding next time.
Unfortunately my knitting class was not quite what the promotional literature described, but I can't blame that on HAL.