We were on this ship for 59 days. For 59 days we smelled SEWAGE in the corridors. The ship and its furnishings appeared rundown, worn out and FILTHY. Cabin ceiling ventilator was encrusted with dirt and dust. Some food served in the main dining room looked and smelled rotten. Kitchen staff paid UNFAITHFUL adherence to special dietary need and illness ensued requiring proximity to bathroom and staying on the ship even when docked. The Lido restaurant was not properly cleaned in the area of the tables and chairs. The same dirt and food particles were visible in the same areas several days in a row. When this was pointed out to a uniformed officer in the restaurant the officer immediately required one of the servers to do a clean-up.
Dearth of on board activities and lack of entertainment crew. Consequently, the on-beard experience was often boring. There was no Karaoke, no organized sports event, no choirs, no shuffleboard, steeplechase etc. like we experienced on other cruise ships.
The on-shore excursions were BADLY over-priced.
Very minimal compensation was given for pain & suffering caused by Thai massage injury to back - a highly recommended ship excursion by excursion staff. The excursion manager was RUDE and insulting when the back injury was brought to her attention. The ship’s hotel manager was RUDE and insensitive to us in a meeting we had requested to tell him our numerous disappointments on the cruise.
On a positive note, most of the staff were friendly and caring. The guest relations manager was particularly sensitive to our concerns and very kind. The quintet (four string musicians and pianist) were excellent in the Lincoln Centre.
The on-board grand pianos were BADLY out of tune. This greatly compromised the beauty of the artists’ music and talent. In fact, several of the grand pianos on board, including the one on the main stage theatre and the two in the piano bar were badly out of tune. This was confirmed by the on-board musicians themselves in discussions I had with them. The hotel manager’s assistant said that all the pianos had been tuned at the beginning of the cruise because she had written a check to the piano tuner. If the piano tuner had been paid, the tuner did not do the job!
The HAL complaint department at the president’s level have been very slow to respond to our written complaints and request for a full refund of our expenses associated with the cruise. They have offered us approximately one-one hundredth (1/100) of our request. Their offer to settle our numerous complaints is clearly an INSULT. Our letter of complaint was submitted while still on board the WESTERDAM. We have been home from the cruise more than TWO MONTHS and HAL has failed to settle our complaint at this point
Our happiest day on this cruise was the 59th day when we could leave the ship and go home.
We look forward to being treated with the respect we deserve by president’s office in granting us a FULL REFUND.
Cabin steward was efficient, friendly and helpful. The cabin and its amenities were average. Veranda and furnishings appeared rundown and badly worn. The veranda chairs were filthy and badly stained. The ventilator in the ceiling of the cabin was badly encrusted with dirt and dust and appeared to have been left unattended for several months. The cabin steward vacuumed it immediately upon request.