I must admit that, after booking on the Veendam, I became a bit anxious reading some negative reviews on the condition and service on this ship. We booked two cabins on the Main Deck, one for my wife and myself and one for my sister and brother-in-law. We flew into Tampa the evening prior to sailing. We arrived at the embarkation point at about 11:15 AM and had a very smooth processing. We were met at the curb by porters who whisked away our luggage with amazing speed. The embarkation processing was quick and smooth. We were all processed by 11:30 and we settled down in a comfortable waiting area. Our number was called just prior to 12 noon and we were on the ship within minutes of that time. We did a quick inspection tour of the ship and were impressed by its cleanliness and ambiance. We then went up to the Lido Deck to partake in the buffet lunch. After lunch we went to the impressive library and chose our reading materials. The library greatly exceeded our expectations. The choice of books and atmosphere were wonderful. At 4:00 we went to our rooms to prepare for the lifeboat drill. By that time our luggage had been delivered and we began to unpack. The amount of storage space for our items was impressive. We turned out for the lifeboat drill and experienced our only negative aspect of the cruise - there were a few people who did not feel that they had to be there with everyone else. This caused a delay of about 20 minutes while we all awaited their arrival. After the drill, we went to the sail-away on the covered lido deck as it began to rain intensively. It would have been nice to be on deck in bright sunshine but that just didn't work out. We were in the early (5:45) traditional seating for dining. The dining room was beautiful and the service was excellent throughout the cruise. I spoke with a number of people who chose the "As You Wish" option that was being implemented on the Veendam on this sailing. They all told me that they were very pleased with the way it was working. We chose to dress for dinner each evening. We were not in a minority in this. I never saw anyone dressed in shorts or such. The two formal nights saw a large number of Tuxedos. I was very pleased that I brought my Tux for these nights. It definitely added to the experience. We did not book any excursions with the ship. We went ashore at each port and enjoyed each in its own way. We went to a few of the shows. They were, in general, not impressive. The singers and dancers were average - at best. The comedian was good and enjoyable. The lounges were very enjoyable. We especially enjoyed relaxing to the live classical string music in the lounge prior to dinner. Disembarkation was very smooth for us. We opted to take the late Disembarkation as our departing flight was in the late afternoon. As we departed we looked back on a wonderful experience. Our anticipations of potential problems did not come to pass at all. Our cabin was great and our stewart was like all the staff we encountered, hard working, pleasant and friendly to the extreme. Our memories of our cruise are all positive. We would love to cruise on this ship again. The wonderful staff, the beautiful ambiance, the lounges, library, staterooms, gym, food and friends we met have left an impression to last a lifetime.

Veendam vindication

Veendam Cruise Review by jimgev

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: April 2008
  • Destination: Western Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Large Interior Stateroom
I must admit that, after booking on the Veendam, I became a bit anxious reading some negative reviews on the condition and service on this ship.
We booked two cabins on the Main Deck, one for my wife and myself and one for my sister and brother-in-law. We flew into Tampa the evening prior to sailing. We arrived at the embarkation point at about 11:15 AM and had a very smooth processing. We were met at the curb by porters who whisked away our luggage with amazing speed. The embarkation processing was quick and smooth. We were all processed by 11:30 and we settled down in a comfortable waiting area. Our number was called just prior to 12 noon and we were on the ship within minutes of that time. We did a quick inspection tour of the ship and were impressed by its cleanliness and ambiance. We then went up to the Lido Deck to partake in the buffet lunch. After lunch we went to the impressive library and chose our reading materials. The library greatly exceeded our expectations. The choice of books and atmosphere were wonderful. At 4:00 we went to our rooms to prepare for the lifeboat drill. By that time our luggage had been delivered and we began to unpack. The amount of storage space for our items was impressive. We turned out for the lifeboat drill and experienced our only negative aspect of the cruise - there were a few people who did not feel that they had to be there with everyone else. This caused a delay of about 20 minutes while we all awaited their arrival. After the drill, we went to the sail-away on the covered lido deck as it began to rain intensively. It would have been nice to be on deck in bright sunshine but that just didn't work out. We were in the early (5:45) traditional seating for dining. The dining room was beautiful and the service was excellent throughout the cruise. I spoke with a number of people who chose the "As You Wish" option that was being implemented on the Veendam on this sailing. They all told me that they were very pleased with the way it was working. We chose to dress for dinner each evening. We were not in a minority in this. I never saw anyone dressed in shorts or such. The two formal nights saw a large number of Tuxedos. I was very pleased that I brought my Tux for these nights. It definitely added to the experience. We did not book any excursions with the ship. We went ashore at each port and enjoyed each in its own way. We went to a few of the shows. They were, in general, not impressive. The singers and dancers were average - at best. The comedian was good and enjoyable. The lounges were very enjoyable. We especially enjoyed relaxing to the live classical string music in the lounge prior to dinner. Disembarkation was very smooth for us. We opted to take the late Disembarkation as our departing flight was in the late afternoon. As we departed we looked back on a wonderful experience. Our anticipations of potential problems did not come to pass at all. Our cabin was great and our stewart was like all the staff we encountered, hard working, pleasant and friendly to the extreme. Our memories of our cruise are all positive. We would love to cruise on this ship again. The wonderful staff, the beautiful ambiance, the lounges, library, staterooms, gym, food and friends we met have left an impression to last a lifetime.
jimgev’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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