We have been on many cruises (16 at last count) but only one previous HAL cruise on the Noordam. It was one of our favorite cruises but itineraries and home port locations prevented us from booking another trip - until now. When we had a chance to cruise on the Maasdam, we jumped on it. And are we ever glad we did. We loved the small ship. The Maasdam has a very efficient and elegant layout. It's an older ship. I've read reviews that said some things were worn out. We didn't experience any of that. We prefer to consider a little wear and tear on an awesome ship like the Maasdam as patina. The decor was understated and getting around the ship was easy.
We were in cabin 541, on the Main Deck and only one deck below the walk-around Promenade. It was a great cabin - nicely appointed and with a full size sofa and a large window. Our cabin steward was outstanding as was his assistant. Very welcoming and took care of anything we asked for quickly.
We made great use of the Explorations library as it is one of the best libraries afloat and is a center of activity for games, reading, computer work and gathering.