I only awarded two points to Westerdam on the 31-day cruise because what little they did well should be expected on a cruise ship of their category, there were many things wrongly done and mishandled by their officers and after many passengers complained in an consistent manner, They tried to improve absolutely nothing. Other passengers claimed that these problems arise from previous cruises in Westerdam but there is not the least concern for an improvement.
What they did well and should be expected:
1.- In my case I did not have any problem in the room. It was noted its continued use for a long time, but had no problems. There were many plumbing problems in other people's cabins.
2.- The dinners in the formal dining room were not very good on most nights, although sometimes the service was very slow.
3.- Protection of passengers in the sense of fumigation of the room and fumigation of the dining room when there was an incident in that area.
4.- The attention in the room was always good. The efforts of waiters in the main dining room also.
5.- Pianists in Piano Bar were good and did their best effort.
6.- Invited artists were good: The violinist Mackay and singer from England.
7.- We chose this boat basically for the itinerary and we had the great opportunity to visit many countries.
Offered tours were good but expensive.
What I did not find in Westerdam and I have seen and enjoyed in other lines of the same level:
1.- There was no music in the ship, it was a cruise that seemed dead. In other vessels the atrium is the central point of activities for passengers. There were no activities in that area and there were zones of the boat that were not used at all, they were wasted. In other lines I enjoyed excellent music at the pool (before noon), during lunch, in the afternoon at the pool, before dinner in the atrium and many people danced, after the night show and after dinner and until after midnight at the disco. I do not talk about cruising for young people but for seniors.
3.- If my husband bought a package of beverages, I should buy the same and for health reasons, I should limit my consumption of alcohol. We do not buy it.
4.- They do not have musical groups of 3 or 4 people as in other lines that make the ship happy with music and songs. The dance group was without energy, tired, not wanting to work, Their scant and mediocre presentations were 30 minutes ....... Incredible !! They did not have choreography to make their presentations. The choreography was bad and minimal.
5.- The officers did not have the capacity to solve problems. Passengers talked to them and they were slow in resolving matters ..... without results.
6.-The tendering was a disaster in the first port in Thailand. At least 700 people got soaked in water for an hour and a half and the officials did nothing ... They looked at each other's faces and put the blame on the port authorities. In the second tendering there was 600 people waiting for an hour and a half on the boat trying to leave. There was good sunny weather and no wind. I heard in the night that it was said that the sea was rough and the wind very strong and therefore it was impossible to do a normal tendering. Similar situation occurred with the courtesy buses for 2000 passengers. They appeared 3 buses of 70 passengers each one and then ............. to wait another hour to see if the transport arrived. The responses of Holland America ........ NONE.
7.- The food in the LIDO was of medium quality for bad. And the fact that we have to wait for the employees to serve delays the process further. In my opinion food has no creativity or energy to create it. The Italian food area always has too much salt. I am a person who likes cooking and knows how to prepare it. Cutted Small cakes make them dry in a few minutes. It is the same with fruit or cheese served in small plates.
8.- Officers did not do the minimal effort to interact with passengers only to fulfill their duties. What a difference with Officers in other cruises
9.- I saw cruise directors with a lot of energy and personality that irradiate happines and energy to passengers. It was not the case in Westerdam The cruise director did not motivate anybody for the daily activities.
10.- Horrible odor in the halls close to B B Kings. It seems that below that area accumulates all the waste of the ship. The captain was informed at the beginning of the cruise WITHOUT ANY RESULT.
11.- The only place to dance after 10 o'clock at night was BB kings, where the musicians and entertainers never connected with the public. In addition to the terrible smells. The only thing that remained after dinner and going to the piano bar was going to sleep. Other passengers informed me that the option to dance after dinner was eliminated to create .......... A COFFEE BAR on the 10th floor ?. Who takes these decisions ????
I will recommend HAL to friends and family? DEFINITELY NOT!!
Will have another cruise with HAL? NOT!!!