Sail Date: January 2018
Excellent value and an excellent ship. We opted for a Signature Suite 6045 which was well worth the money. Room Stewards (Nyoman and Yusep) were attentive and always accommodating with a smile. We had thoughts of opting for the upscale ... Read More
Excellent value and an excellent ship. We opted for a Signature Suite 6045 which was well worth the money. Room Stewards (Nyoman and Yusep) were attentive and always accommodating with a smile. We had thoughts of opting for the upscale restaurants, but elected not to do so since the regular food service and quality were very good. Our Wine Steward, Yohan, was exceptional and most helpful. Being that the cruising itinerary has almost 7 sea days, the entertainment and ship-board amenities have to be good. The Lincoln Center Stage quintet was excellent, and, although we did not see all the stage presentations, the few that we saw were very professionally done. Land tours were good, and the bus lines were not long, given that there were several handicap people on board. The several tour guides that we experienced all spoke with different levels of English competency, which is to be expected. All in all, they were knowledgeable and had good senses of humor. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
My husband and I planned this cruise a while back and looked at a lot of reviews before we booked this cruise. Our age group is between 49-54 and we thought this was a perfect cruise for us. It turned out even better than we could have ... Read More
My husband and I planned this cruise a while back and looked at a lot of reviews before we booked this cruise. Our age group is between 49-54 and we thought this was a perfect cruise for us. It turned out even better than we could have imagined. Just a piece of advice, if you are into dancing and being up late at night this cruise is NOT for you. Also if you are traveling with children of any age this cruise is NOT for you. The night life on the ship is minimal and so is the entertainment during the day. BB Kings and the Billboard have some fun evening entertainment that we enjoyed. During the day American's Test Kitchen was good but packed so get there early! I wish they would have given you a taste of what they were making. There was live music on the deck by the pool a couple of days but mostly there was music playing over a speaker. This was fine with us and where we spent most of our time. We read and people watched most days. The ship was on the smaller side and very easy to navagate. Our cabin was nice and our balcony was great! It was always kept clean by our very nice room stewarts. We did not eat in the dining room at all so I can't comment. We ate most of our meals in the Lido Market and the food was outstanding! They served the same food in the Lido Market as they did in the dining room and it was just so much easier picking out what we wanted to eat. The service on this ship was great. The bar tenders in several bars knew our names on the second day and were always helpful. The ports we visited were very interesting and the excursions were all great! Puerto Chiapas, Mexico was the only bad port. If you are going here please book an excursion because there really is nothing to do except shop at the market by the port. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We chose this cruise primarily based on timing and the beginning/end points. Less on the cruise line. Holland America met our needs for our criteria. In spite of all that we'd heard about HAL catering mostly to elderly clients, we signed ... Read More
We chose this cruise primarily based on timing and the beginning/end points. Less on the cruise line. Holland America met our needs for our criteria. In spite of all that we'd heard about HAL catering mostly to elderly clients, we signed up for a 15 day cruise from Ft. Lauderdale to San Diego. Leaving Ft. Lauderdale, our first stop was Half Moon Cay. Overall, less touristy and was fine for the short time we were there. After 2 sea days, we hit Cartagena. We were there for a half-day. Didn't have time to really go anywhere other than a quick city tour. Honestly, not sure why we visited this port. Would have gladly traded Cartagena for a day in Panama City, Panama. The canal was everything we had heard it would be. The views were amazing and the trip transiting the canal was something we'll never forget. The crew did a nice job making folks comfortable. Seriously made the entire trip worth it. This is where the wheels started coming off. The first thing we found was the hot tub closed at 10 pm. Having dinner at 8 pm made this problematic. Wasn't much else to do after dinner so this was the logical choice for our 40/50 year-old group. There were six of us cruising so we thought we would ask for a little extension for one of the hot tubs. We were quickly told no. The staff was beyond confused when we told them their simple no wasn't good enough and we would like to escalate the issue to a higher authority. This really threw them for a loop. After a fair amount of complaining and 7 days into the cruise, the Captain firmly and finally said no. Guess he wasn't too interested in our opinion or issue. The second issue involved shipboard credits and the communication form our travel agency. It's too long and involved for this but suffice it to say, the crew was little to no help with this issue either. Overall, we found the staff beyond our cabin stewards and waiters to be pretty bored and less than concerned about pretty much anything beyond the basics. Couple that with the fact that everything other than ice water and coffee (even coffee in some areas of the ship were costly) were charged. HAL seems intent on getting every possible cent from their passengers. As I said, the crew was generally not helpful. Not sure if this is the HAL culture or a profound lack of leadership from our particular captain. The ports were a mixed bag with Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Guatemala being the best by far. Chiapas, Mexico was a serious waste of time. The crew admitted there was absolutely nothing to do there. Again, not sure what we stopped there. Have to say I've taken my last cruise on Holland America Lines. Not impressed in any way. Oh,the best part of the ship was our shower was the best I've ever had on a cruise ship. This is our 8th cruise overall and was the most disappointing when it comes to the cruise line. The rep they have catering to elderly passengers is well-deserved and earned. We felt totally out of place. Should have listened to my gut! Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
Chose cruise primarily because of departure port and dates of sailing. (Over NY Eve). Positives: 1. The signature suite! 2. Stewards very friendly--everyone always said hello. 3. Ship was redone a year ago--so spaces are nicely ... Read More
Chose cruise primarily because of departure port and dates of sailing. (Over NY Eve). Positives: 1. The signature suite! 2. Stewards very friendly--everyone always said hello. 3. Ship was redone a year ago--so spaces are nicely kept up. Very clean! 4. The EXC area and the Observation deck were VERY nice. We hung out there several times. 5. The customer service was positive and the crew kept everyone informed. 6. The LIDO--the buffet--was bounteous and nicely kept up. Recommended! 7. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. 8. Excursions not awesome but islands had been hit by hurricanes and was over the holidays. 9. Shows tied in with BBC Planet were nice. Negatives: 1. Accounting and paperwork were frustrating and had many kinks...prepaid items were not accounted for, tickets for excursions not ready, everything had to be rung up even if prepaid. (Was also charged $171 for massage that my friend could not take advantage of as BOTH she and masseuse were very sea sick). Still waiting for credit for excusrions we were unable to go on due to weather. 2. Art auction (also seen on other cruises) a waste of space--never saw anyone even looking. Same for casino--poorly utilized and sounded like a blatant way to separate you and your money. 3. The "shops" were extremely limited and prices were very high for the quality. The "spontaneous" shops on Alaska Princess were far superior. The jewlery "events" on this ship were a joke. Never saw a soul in the jewelry shop. 4. The pools were very small and crowded with kids (but this was the holidays). 5. The Eastern Caribbean excursions are limited and not very diverse--due to location limitations --of course noithing compares to Alaska! 6. WiFi was a pain to arrange-- Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
My wife and I chose to celebrate our 40th by going on a cruise. We picked Holland America and was very glad we did. The experience was beyond our expectations. The comfort and service was better than most 5 star resorts. We especially ... Read More
My wife and I chose to celebrate our 40th by going on a cruise. We picked Holland America and was very glad we did. The experience was beyond our expectations. The comfort and service was better than most 5 star resorts. We especially enjoyed the perks of the Neptune Suite. The concierge service was great. We decided to renew our vows during the cruise and the Cruise director, Erin, and our concierge staff made it the most memorable moment of the cruise. My wife is still beaming for the care that was provided and the ceremony performed by Captain Vincent. Dinner afterwards in the Pinnacle Grill was spectacular. The entertainment was really good and the the Exploration lounge was great for those down times. We did not experience any problems with embarkation or debarkation. In fact it was extremely efficient and well done. We most will certainly cruise Holland America again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
My sweetheart enjoys the low key atmosphere of HAL, as well as the food and service. The service was good but not what I have experienced in the past. The food is excellent, we ate in the main dining room for dinner, did not partake in ... Read More
My sweetheart enjoys the low key atmosphere of HAL, as well as the food and service. The service was good but not what I have experienced in the past. The food is excellent, we ate in the main dining room for dinner, did not partake in the specialty restaurants this time. The room was spacious and clean, plenty of storage. My one beef is with the entertainment, it is nice but very low key. Although a Christmas week cruise, most venues close by 11, with only the casino, BB King and one bar open. The casino is small, and very quiet. For smokers, there is only one area, all the way aft. It was okay but could use more cover. If it had rained would be unusable. The staff did not do a good job maintaining the area, ashtrays and other debris not cleaned consistently, bar service haphazard. This was the only part of the ship that was not maintained up to HAL standards. Overall a pleasant week. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
No kids visiting us in Florida for Christmas so we treated ourselves to a Christmas cruise. We have over 200 days on HAL and have definitely seen a decline in service,especially in the MDR,in the last few years. To negate this decline ... Read More
No kids visiting us in Florida for Christmas so we treated ourselves to a Christmas cruise. We have over 200 days on HAL and have definitely seen a decline in service,especially in the MDR,in the last few years. To negate this decline somewhat we chose a Neptune Suite and found the service to be excellent. Embarkation and disembarkation were a breeze, especially with a Global Entry Traveller card (bypassed all the lines for customs on exiting the ship). Our cabin stewards were diligent and very pleasant. The Neptune Lounge provided a respite from the crowded Lido deck when the ship was at sea and the concierge booked all our specialty restaurant reservations and the one excursion that we took in Grand Turk. After one dinner in the MDR we decided that we would avoid it if at all possible! We had open seating and it was a zoo!! After waiting in one of the lounges for about 20 minutes with a beeper, we were called to the MDR and then stood with in the doorway with about 30 other people for another 20 minutes, getting in the way of the waiters carrying food etc. We were finally crowded into a small table for 8 in the middle of the room with waiters and everyone else pushing past us. It was not fun. The food was mediocre and the service was slow. Too many tables in too small a space with not enough waiters. We spent every other night in the Pinnacle Grill with one other dinner in Cannelleto. I wish they could find another spot for Cannelleto. The open view into the Lido is not conducive to fine dining. The meal was a little over cooked but otherwise acceptable. We used to enjoy ballroom dancing in the Ocean Bar before and after dinner but that has all gone. The dance floor has been carpeted over and the band is no more. We did try the B.B. Blue’s Lounge but for the most part the music was not to our taste. Shows in the main theater were just OK with one exception - a great British violinist who entertained us on the last night. One improvement over years ago is the fact that one can stay in the cabin until ready for departure and even have a room service breakfast. We also appreciate the fact that the cabins are ready for occupancy after boarding the ship. Not usually so on the Celebrity ships. We will find out if that has changed when we sail on the Reflection at the end of January. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
The ship was great, just underwent a refit this past spring. Elevators are extremely fast, service was excellent, easy to get around the ship, food was really good (way better than most lines) and the small details really made a ... Read More
The ship was great, just underwent a refit this past spring. Elevators are extremely fast, service was excellent, easy to get around the ship, food was really good (way better than most lines) and the small details really made a difference. The Casino and bars were great as well! Grandmother, Mother and Father, and 2 teens traveled in 2 Veranda rooms - very comfortable. We dined mainly in the Dining Room for dinner. The selections were top notch - not lobster every night but, some really nice duck breast, halibut, prime rib, rack of lamb, etc. all well prepared, meats were cooked perfectly, sauces were very good, and sides were also good. The Lido restaurant had some great breakfast and lunch offerings - not just leftovers from the dinner before, and dinner there was comparable, on most days, to the dining room just buffet style - and the Dive Inn had delicious, cooked to order burgers and fries daily. One thing we really appreciated was the selections, most of them anyway, were served by kitchen staff instead of "help yourself". It seemed much cleaner, less waste, and fresher. The casino staff were exceptional on this trip. $6 Black Jack and $5 Craps were available. The dealers were professional, especially the pit bosses, and the servers (Pio in particular) were fantastic. We were never left waiting for a cocktail for more than a few minutes. Our room attendants were barely seen but, certainly noticed. The rooms were cleaned promptly and quietly. The spa staff were good. We enjoyed massages although felt pressured to buy over $120 worth of oils immediately AFTER - while still sitting on the massage table. Massages in nice spas are not inexpensive so we thought the pitch while trying to enjoy the relaxation was a bit much. Other than that specific sales pitch, the Westerdam had very little overzealous photo selling, photo taking, trinket peddling, etc.... although they still have the same "outfits" selling gold plated jewelry at real gold prices, etc. but, they aren't constantly shoving them at you. Overall a relaxing trip, easy ship to get around on, great dining, and excellent service! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
In the interest of full disclosure the only reason I booked this cruise was because it dove tailed with a cruise I was taking prior, and I wanted to be away over Christmas. I was fully prepared to be met with a sea of blue hair and ... Read More
In the interest of full disclosure the only reason I booked this cruise was because it dove tailed with a cruise I was taking prior, and I wanted to be away over Christmas. I was fully prepared to be met with a sea of blue hair and was pleasantly surprised that there were more children on this sailing (over Christmas week) than I’ve seen on Carnival. This gave a youthful feel to the cruise, but didn’t work well at dinner hour. Sadly the main dining room had more challenges than just large groups of boisterous children. The most glaring problem ‘literally’ the glaring overhead lighting. There is a band of fluorescent lighting that runs the length of the main dining room that is so bright you feel like you’re dining at McDonalds. After the first night of this sensory overload lighting I decided to seek out alternative dining venues. One of the more reasonable alternate dining was the Italian themed Canaletto. Unfortunately, after three visits and many menu disappointments I would not recommend this venue. My biggest complaint was not from lack of service, it was spot on, but rather that the food was really bland. The menu in the main dining room offered much better options, if it wasn’t for the ‘fast food venue’ type lighting. Okay, so moving beyond the stateroom and the dining situation I want to address what I considered the biggest negative about the Westerdam, and (obviously) give others the opportunity to decide if this would be a deal breaker for them or not. This was my 67th cruise (yes, you read it right - sixty-seven), and the condition and decor of the hallways was like nothing I have ever seen. The carpeting was discustingly dirty. We’re not talking spots here and there, we’re talking great swatches of filth. Add to that that every day (bar none) at some place in the hallway was an industrial strength dryer running full on to dry out wet spot on said filthy carpeting. I’m not sure if the cabin stewards kept spilling their cleaning buckets of water, or if bathrooms were flooding, but I have never experienced so may loud, stinky, dryers blowing on a single cruise. In the room steward department, I had two. The one that came to introduce himself the first afternoon, was arrogant, distracted, and unprofessional. It was very unlike the normal ‘room steward introduction’ and more like he wanted to establish himself as an equal. I didn’t come on the cruise looking for a bff and I am a very low maintenance person, but at the same time I don’t suffer fools. My only request was that the mini bar be emptied and I would not be using it and that was met with a blank stare. Finally I said that I would remove the items to make room for my wine, at which point he graciously agreed....whatever!!! I won’t go into detail, but things only deteriorated from there. The other room steward was a gem. Always friendly, smiling, and eager to please. How I felt sorry for him being paired up with the other steward. I realize that this has been a very critical review thus far and don’t want to give the impression that I am a malcontent. One thing that the Westerdam offered and I thoroughly enjoyed was a feature movie matinee each day at 2:00 p.m. in the main theatre. I LOVE movies and don’t enjoy going to see them solo at home, so this was a real treat. I also found the food in the Pinacle Grill to be exquisite. They offer a lunch there most days for only $10 and it is such a treat. I would highly recommend that, or even dinner at a very reasonable $35. In closing I will only add that the check-in process was a bit of a nightmare, but I think that was just a fluke. It turns out that they had accidentally assigned my cabin to a women that as meant to be in the same cabin on the opposite side of the ship. I spent at least 20 minutes providing receipts showing that I did not book a shared cabin, etc. It always amazes me how they assume that the customer is in the wrong before they consider that it was their error. I also experienced a major problem with the person in the cabin next to me smoking on her balcony. After three days of registering complaints and providing photos for evidence, the only way it actually became resolved was when I confronted the person myself. This was despite several assurances from Guest Services that they had spoken to her and she either: a) promised not to do it again, or b) wasn’t doing it (which I took to mean I was making it up). In summary I would say if you encounter a problem expect a lot of lip service and not much else, hence my low rating for this cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We chose this cruise because it went through the entire Panama Canal and ported at places we had not seen. It satisfied all those. Unlike Caribbean cruises, each and every port had different ethnic, social and landscape. We learned a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it went through the entire Panama Canal and ported at places we had not seen. It satisfied all those. Unlike Caribbean cruises, each and every port had different ethnic, social and landscape. We learned a lot about the history of the locality. We chose a variety of HAL sponsored excursions and three private tours. I highly recommend the private ones. The HAL ones were crowded and some were not staffed with adequately knowledgeable tour company staff. The highlight of the tour was transiting the Canal. We did marvel at the engineering necessary by the French and Americans to complete the task. We did NOT like that the commentary by the 'expert' was doing from the Captain's deck was not able to be heard any place but the aft deck, the Promenade Deck and the Crow's Nest. It was not transmitted to other decks or onto balconies/verandas. Since this was for sure the main reason people took this cruise, it should have been. Also noted that daily morning announcements, times to disembark or other information - including emergency ones - were not able to be heard unless you had your cabin door open. We encountered multiple incidents where information given to me by Guest Services was contradicted by information given to my husband. Also many of the GS attendants spoke with such an accent that it made understanding them and them me, difficult. I have nothing but praise for our room steward, dining room attendant and assistant attendant and maitre d. They were always anxious to please us. The wine steward was less so once we told him that we were not interested in purchasing a wine package or even a bottle. Read Less
Westerdam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 4.5 3.7
Public Rooms 4.5 4.3
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 2.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 4.0 3.7
Service 4.5 4.3
Value For Money 4.5 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.2

Find a Westerdam Cruise