Subscribe today
Get Cruise Critic in your inbox

Westerdam Review

Home > Cruise Ship Reviews > Holland America > Westerdam Review
79% of cruisers loved it
  • Great Pacific Northwest fare at Pinnacle Grill restaurant
  • Traditional atmosphere with modern amenities on a not too big, not too small ship
  • Edgy high-tech production shows

Show the Lowest Price
Departure Month
Please select at least one vendor.
Avoya Travel
Expedia
Cruise.com
Direct Line Cruises
CheapCruises.com
American Discount Cruises
Priceline.com

Westerdam Overview

(4.5) 4.5 out of 5+ star rating

Holland America Line's Westerdam (it means west) is the third of four Vista Class ships, and a decade into its existence, it continues to do what the line does best -- balance the traditional cruising experience with updated, contemporary amenities. Westerdam keeps up with the times in two major areas, entertainment and dining, and recent refurbishments and programming additions reflect that.

Nine LED panels were added to the Vista Lounge stage in 2013, allowing the introduction of six edgy, high-tech, production shows, a nod to an increasingly more youthful audience. B.B. King's Blues Club also takes center stage five nights a week in the cozy Queen's Lounge. And traditional ballroom dancing has moved into the 21st century via the line's hugely successful "Dancing with the Stars at Sea" dance classes, contests and performances.

Dinner menus have been streamlined and signature dishes introduced by a Culinary Council of renowned chefs. There's a new vegetarian menu, and only sustainable seafood is served, showcasing the line's support for the environment. Casual dining has been enhanced at the new Dive-In at the Terrace Grill, where an enticing array of gourmet burgers and hot dogs are made to order.

Ultimately, it is the warm, welcoming attitude of the crew passengers will appreciate. A smile and "hello" go a long way in making you feel at home on a ship that's ample but not too large. With just under 2,000 cruisers, Westerdam excels in yet another balancing act. There's enough variety in daily activities to keep you entertained, but you won't feel you've missed something. The same goes for dining. On a weeklong cruise, you can sample every restaurant and still return to your favorites.

Westerdam Fellow Passengers

Holland America is expanding its traditional North American passenger base to attract more English speakers, particularly Brits and Australians. The average age, too, is shifting, in this case downward, and is now around 45. During the summer Alaska season, Westerdam sees more families traveling with small children, and there might be 100 or more kids younger than 18 onboard.

Westerdam Dress Code

The ship offers two formal nights on weeklong cruises, more on longer trips. While some men wear tuxes, suits and ties are the norm on formal evenings -- with ladies wearing dressy, not-over-the-top, attire. Those preferring to remain casual can avoid the main restaurants on formal nights, and they seem not to feel out of place being underdressed in entertainment venues after dinner.

Smart casual is the rule most nights, meaning slacks and a sports shirt for men and a dress, skirt or slacks for women. T-shirts, swimsuits, tank tops and shorts are not allowed in restaurants during evening hours. Casual and comfortable works fine during the day.

Westerdam Gratuity

Holland America Line automatically adds $11.50 per person, per day ($12 per day for suite guests) to onboard accounts. This is shared among waiters, stewards and other service personnel. That amount can be adjusted in either direction by visiting the front desk. A 15 percent gratuity is tacked onto wine and bar bills. A 15 percent gratuity is also automatically included on spa treatments.

Print the entire ship review


Westerdam Member Reviews 665 Reviews
   Great time on the Westerdam!
January 2015

My mother and I were on the Westerdam 10-17 January. Overall, we had a wonderful time. The food and service was top notch, and we both continuously remarked at how cheerful and happy the staff was all the time, no matter what they were doing. The ...continue


   Escaped the cold
January 2015

As a working couple, we are challenged to find suitable options within our work schedule time constraints. We were fortunate to find a delightful early January diversion on the MS. Westerdam. We have sailed on HAL once before, Alaska this past ...continue


   What a disappointing time on this ship
December 2014

My wife and I along with our two sons booked two cabins on this ship. When we first got aboard, the ship seems to be at least 10 years out of date. It is musty and even dank in come places. The buffet on the ninth deck was mediocre and it seemed ...continue


1 - 3 of 665 Reviews


Overview   Cabins   Dining   Activities   Family   Itineraries   Deck Plans   More Reviews  
 

Show the Lowest Price
Departure Month
Please select at least one vendor.
Avoya Travel
Expedia
Cruise.com
Direct Line Cruises
CheapCruises.com
American Discount Cruises
Priceline.com
Sponsored Listings:
Westerdam Ratings
Member Rating
Dining
5.0
4.2
Public Rooms
4.0
4.6
Cabins
4.0
4.6
Entertainment
5.0
3.9
Spa & Fitness
5.0
4.0
Family & Children
3.0
3.2
Shore Excursions
5.0
4.7
Enrichment
4.0
NA
Service
4.0
4.5
Value-for-Money
4.0
4.2
Rates
4.0
4.3

Sailing From

Cruises To
Alaska
Eastern Caribbean

Explore This Ship
Ship Stats
Crew: 800
Launched: 2004
Decks: 11
Tonnage: 82,348
Passengers: 1,916
Registry: Netherlands
CDC Score: 98
 
Community
Join the Forums
Get answers from real cruisers on the forums


About UsAdvertisingEditorial DisclaimerPress
PrivacySite MapStoreSubscribe
X

Thank You For Signing Up!

Please Note: To ensure delivery of your free e-letters, please add news@cruisecritic.com to your address book.

We're committed to protecting your privacy and will not rent or sell your e-mail address. By proceeding, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.