Thomson Spirit Review
- Inspired by ocean liners of 50's and 60's
- Open-seating dining for all three meals
- Extensive open space including two pool decks
- Reservations-required poolside restaurant
- Wider range of cabins than other ships in fleet
- Thomson sells pre- and post-cruise land packages
- Geared toward British guests
By Douglas Newman, Cruise Critic contributor
Thomson Spirit was built in 1983 as Holland America Line's Nieuw Amsterdam. After a brief charter to the now-defunct United States Lines as Patriot from 2000 to 2002, the ship was chartered to Louis Cruise Lines in 2003; Louis has in turn chartered the ship to Thomson ever since.
Holland America was a deeply traditional company in 1984 and as a result, this ship's design is strongly inspired by the ocean liners of the 1950's and 1960's. The result is a ship that looks and feels like a ship, not a floating resort. There is an unusually wide range of public rooms for a ship of this size; there's a two-deck-high show lounge that's really a lounge, not a theater; a dedicated cinema; several bars; a nightclub; a casino; a library; a card and reading room; an Internet cafe; a spa, beauty salon and gym; and a shopping area. There's also a dedicated area for kids aged 3 to 12.
Thomson Spirit offers a wider range of cabins than some of the other ships in the fleet. Standard inside and outside cabins are spacious for an older ship and have good storage space (many outside cabins have portholes rather than windows). Higher-grade outside cabins are larger and a good value. There are a number of suites, albeit without balconies, and one penthouse suite (added by United States Lines, and thus not present on Thomson Celebration), again without a balcony.
The Compass Rose Dining Room on Thomson Spirit and Thomson Celebration offers open-seating dining for all three meals. The other main dining venue is the 24-hour casual Lido Restaurant. There's also the poolside Terrace Grill and Sirocco's, a reservations-required restaurant with a cover charge.
The open decks are unusually extensive for a ship of this size and include two pool decks (both situated at the stern with excellent views), a sports deck and a full teak-decked wraparound promenade.
We've just returned from the Fjord-land Splendour aboard the Thomson Spirit and had a good time. The weather was glorious, hitting 31C on one of the days so that helped. We sailed from Newcastle which was an absolute breeze, except for the half ...continue
Second cruise with the Thomson line.
The cruise was a mixed bag of excellence to very poor.
The Thomson Spirit is an old ship, tatty in places and very noisy- shakes and rattles almost continuously, regardless of the ...continue
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Arrived at Newcastle which was a very pleasant embarkation unlike airports. It had been 8 years since my husband and I was last on this ship and we definitely noticed a huge change on the ship.We were located on deck 7 deluxe suite, which was ok ...continue
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