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We sailed on the January 10, 2016 Dancing With the Stars Championship Finals Cruise. We booked Signature Suite 6056. We had previously sailed on the Nieuw Amsterdam two years ago; and although the public areas have since been refurbished, the cabins and hallways leading to the cabins have not. In fact, other than a 55" wall mounted TV our cabin was exactly the same as it was two yars ago, albiet a bit more dated and worn. The wood legs on the chairs was scratched and dented, the veranda chairs and cushhions, worn out, the carpet on the floor of the suite was literally threadbare. HAL badly needs to refurbish the cabins o the Nieuw Amsterdam! FOOD - Food in the main dining roon was not up to HAl's previous standard. Portiion sizes continue to shrink. Our seervice was quite slow, not becuse our waiter and his assistant didn't work hard, but because they had 22 people to serve and on two nights they added a table of 8 more of the oper seating folks. We mentionerd it to the dining room manaer, he just shrugged. Some of the dishes were just weird. The buffet in the LIDo was decent, the room service breakfasts werre quite good, delibvered on time and correct. DNTERTAINMENT- The entertaianment was not so hot. The HAl singers and dancers are very talented but their material was not good. Few in the audience had ever even heard of some of the songs they attempted. The Dancing With the Stars shows were entertianing, however Carson Kressley was just plain disgusting. He should not be allowed to get into his sexually suggestive rants on gay sex with kids in the audience. Florence Henderson was likewise not very entertaining, why she was sselected a a judge is anyon'e guess. Previous year's DWTS at Sea Finals have featured Sabrina Bryan, Derek Hough, andf other far better personalities thatn Carson and Florence. The steel band Island Magic was outstanding, they received several standing ovatons. EXCURSIONS - We did not take any of HAL's offerings. We have found over the years that they are too pricey, not very good. We did take an independent tour to the Bacardi Distillary in San Juan, PR, it was great. Likewise in St. Maarten we took and independent tour of the island for half of the HAl cost and it lasted half an hour longer. HAL's private island, Half Moon Cay is nice but your on board beverage card will not work on the island even though HAL runs it. Go figure. Nice beach, however having to take a tender to getr to it is a pain. All in all, the cruise was pleasant for the most part. The service was good everywhre except the LIDo where the passengers lliteerally have to dodge the staff who are everywhere waling in the aisles and they don't pay one bit of attention to the paying passengers. The LIDO staff as a whole are not friendly. I do thinnk HAL needs to update its ships and its entertainment could use improvement also.

HAL seems to be slipping.

Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review by BLittle

7 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2016
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Signature Superior Verandah Suite
We sailed on the January 10, 2016 Dancing With the Stars Championship Finals Cruise. We booked Signature Suite 6056. We had previously sailed on the Nieuw Amsterdam two years ago; and although the public areas have since been refurbished, the cabins and hallways leading to the cabins have not. In fact, other than a 55" wall mounted TV our cabin was exactly the same as it was two yars ago, albiet a bit more dated and worn. The wood legs on the chairs was scratched and dented, the veranda chairs and cushhions, worn out, the carpet on the floor of the suite was literally threadbare. HAL badly needs to refurbish the cabins o the Nieuw Amsterdam!

FOOD - Food in the main dining roon was not up to HAl's previous standard. Portiion sizes continue to shrink. Our seervice was quite slow, not becuse our waiter and his assistant didn't work hard, but because they had 22 people to serve and on two nights they added a table of 8 more of the oper seating folks. We mentionerd it to the dining room manaer, he just shrugged. Some of the dishes were just weird. The buffet in the LIDo was decent, the room service breakfasts werre quite good, delibvered on time and correct.

DNTERTAINMENT- The entertaianment was not so hot. The HAl singers and dancers are very talented but their material was not good. Few in the audience had ever even heard of some of the songs they attempted. The Dancing With the Stars shows were entertianing, however Carson Kressley was just plain disgusting. He should not be allowed to get into his sexually suggestive rants on gay sex with kids in the audience. Florence Henderson was likewise not very entertaining, why she was sselected a a judge is anyon'e guess. Previous year's DWTS at Sea Finals have featured Sabrina Bryan, Derek Hough, andf other far better personalities thatn Carson and Florence.

The steel band Island Magic was outstanding, they received several standing ovatons.

EXCURSIONS - We did not take any of HAL's offerings. We have found over the years that they are too pricey, not very good. We did take an independent tour to the Bacardi Distillary in San Juan, PR, it was great. Likewise in St. Maarten we took and independent tour of the island for half of the HAl cost and it lasted half an hour longer.

HAL's private island, Half Moon Cay is nice but your on board beverage card will not work on the island even though HAL runs it. Go figure. Nice beach, however having to take a tender to getr to it is a pain.

All in all, the cruise was pleasant for the most part. The service was good everywhre except the LIDo where the passengers lliteerally have to dodge the staff who are everywhere waling in the aisles and they don't pay one bit of attention to the paying passengers. The LIDO staff as a whole are not friendly. I do thinnk HAL needs to update its ships and its entertainment could use improvement also.
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