Subscribe today
Get Cruise Critic in your inbox

Maasdam Review

77% of cruisers loved it
  • Classic atmosphere with charming service
  • Partnership with fine dining brand Le Cirque
  • 2011 refit added new restaurant, cabins, bars

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

Maasdam Overview

(4.0) 4.0 out of 5+ star rating
With its mid-sized capacity and classic styling, Holland America's stately Maasdam is a manageable and pleasant ship. After eighteen years in service, it has succeeded in retaining its youth -- with a major sweep of contemporary updates in both 2006 and the spring of 2011 -- but has resisted the impulse to act like a teenager. As such, the 1,258-passenger Maasdam has retained some of the traditional sensibilities that appeal to its older audience base -- high tea, formal nights, ballroom dancing and displays of antiques -- while adding elements to appeal to younger audiences. Such newer features include two contemporary alternative restaurants, wireless hotspots, three new hip specialty bars and an iPod tour of the aforementioned antiques.

Indeed, there are some who say hats off to Maasdam for resisting some of the more radical trends of the behemoth ships (no surfing wave simulators or rock-climbing walls here), while stepping ahead on other fronts. Case in point is the ship's state-of-the-art, New York Times-branded Explorations Cafe, a combination library and digital fun room for the over 50 set (think touch-screen interactive maps, over-sized crossword puzzles).

Its latest refurbishment, in April 2011, was part of HAL's $560 million Signature of Excellence initiative focused on modernizing its oldest ships. Along with new carpets, upholstery and soft goods, Maasdam gained three major features: a dinner-only Italian restaurant, two new kinds of cabins, and the Mix Lounge, a three-in-one bar central with each venue offering a specific type of drink and each flowing into the others. The new additions -- especially the alternative restaurant and bar area -- help up Maasdam's "hip factor" without detracting from any of the ship's classic charm.
Maasdam Fellow Passengers
While Holland America is working to move beyond its reputation as a seniors' line, and Maasdam is one of the fleet's designated family friendly vessels, the average age on the cruise line's 15 vessels is about 57. Shorter itineraries and cruises during school holiday periods tend to attract a higher percentage of younger passengers and families. On Maasdam's non-summer and longer sailings, expect a more typical Holland America devotee -- a more senior crowd that appreciates the line's nod toward cruise traditions.
Maasdam Dress Code
Two nights in seven are designated as formal nights in the dining room. For the majority of men, this translates as dark suits (there are some tuxes), and for women, the range was from the little black dress to larger, longer, more colorful affairs.

Editor's Note: You can order "formal night" options from the ship in advance, or even buy them from the shops. (They're cheaply made "mother of the bride" looks, but they'll do in a pinch.)

Dress codes apply to kids, too. On formal nights, the girls were adorable in their "fancy" dresses; most boys wore, if not suits, than at least shirts with ties. The rest of the evenings are "smart casual," that conundrum of a description that tends to create more questions than answers but in general means slacks or skirts for women and khakis and polo shirts or button-downs for men. Jeans, tank tops and pool attire are discouraged from public areas.
Maasdam Gratuity
Holland America Line automatically adds $11.50 per person, per day, to onboard accounts; this is then 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 on to bar bills. Note that gratuities are not automatically included on bills for spa treatments.
Print the entire ship review


Maasdam Member Reviews 306 Reviews
   Great Experience
August 2014

We chose the Boston to Montreal cruise to celebrate our 20th anniversary because we would not have to go through an airport. Leaving from RI we had a car service take us to the Boston Port & we rented a one way car to drive back from ...continue


Overall I'd give this 3\10 - not good. Our experience was negative mainly due to our room. Our "large ocean view stateroom" (842) was awful - turned out to be at the back of the ship, on the lowest floor, and sounded and felt like it was right on ...continue


   Food and service exceeded expectation
August 2014

Smallish ship of 1250 passengers means never feeling crowded, but still having pretty much the full cruise ship experience. We were concerned with open dining but never had to wait the 2 times we went at about 5:15PM.

Food was tasty. A ...continue


1 - 3 of 306 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
Onboard.com
CheapCruises.com
Cruise.com
Priceline.com
Direct Line Cruises
American Discount Cruises
Sponsored Listings:
Maasdam Ratings
Member Rating
Dining
3.0
4.3
Public Rooms
4.0
4.6
Cabins
4.0
4.4
Entertainment
3.0
3.9
Spa & Fitness
3.0
3.9
Family & Children
3.0
3.2
Shore Excursions
3.0
4.5
Enrichment
4.0
NA
Service
4.0
4.7
Value-for-Money
4.0
4.2
Rates
4.0
4.1

Sailing From

Cruises To
Canada & New England
Eastern Caribbean
South America & Antarctica
Southern Caribbean
Transatlantic

Explore This Ship
Ship Stats
Crew: 580
Launched: 1994/2011
Decks: 10
Tonnage: 55,451
Passengers: 1,258
Registry: Netherlands
CDC Score: 95
 
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.