I’m happy to say, what a difference this was with my first cruise. I really thought if this will be so bad as my first cruise, this will be my last but thankfully everything was super. I'm even now already looking for the next one (only not anymore with Princess cruises).
This time travelling with my two teenage daughters and my brother (he in another room) This time on a smaller ship and off course less passengers but I think they have the same class. Yes the Rotterdam is an older ship and I must admit when I saw it the first time outside it looked old. Later on the cruise they painted everything outside and it becomes better. Thankfully insight everything is very clean/nice and in good condition. I love the spots (the café’s, library,shops etc.) it makes it very cosy (you feel at home). I read many times that people say that there are many “older” people on board and yes I admit the average age on the boat is mainly 60+ but directly I must say that neither I as my daughters found this exasperating. The boarding was very smoothly and we even could use our room directly. The only thing what really must be better on this boat is more (or renewed) Sun/swimming place. Now there was nearly place to lay by the Lido pool. Normally you can lay on the sky deck as well but all chairs were old and rusted (and all tied with a rope), therefore there was only place by the Lido pool or the Sea view pool. I don’t know why they renewed the last pool (Sea View) as there isn’t any water in it now but only some strange chairs in what I assume a waterway (not a swimming pool). When it was hot weather you have to cool down in the hot tub (as you can’t go through the Lido restaurant with your swimming clothes to the Lido Pool. Nice is that the roof by the Lido pool can be opened/closed (only sometimes it is too warm in there)
The service on board on all levels (from front desk to Security) is excellent. Nothing is too difficult. Where we had on our 1st cruise problems with taking a bottle of wine (from the wine package) from the bar to the dining restaurant (or vice versa), here it was no problem at all. The buffet restaurant was very good (we loved the food places, were they prepare all kinds of Salad, Thais food etc.). We only didn’t use the buffet restaurant for the evening. Dining restaurant was excellent (also in the morning at breakfast). As my children doesn’t like everything and don’t eat pork, I thought this will be a problem, but thanks to our wonderful waiter (and cook) nothing was impossible and my children even keep eating there. Also what we like was the events by the swimming pool (Spanish and Dutch), with games/food and drinks (this gave the cruise extra fun experience). The quality of food by the drive-in at the Terrace is very good as well. Hamburgers and Hotdogs were very nice.
We had an interior room, which was spacy enough. My youngest daughter slept on the sofa which was comfortable enough. Thanks to the cabin stewards everything was always clean. Bathroom was also spacy enough. We liked the cabin wall, so that there was always space enough for your clothes .