Rotterdam Cruise Review by freddy penguin
- Sail Date: May 2010
- Destination: Alaska
- Cabin Type: Large Interior Stateroom
CABIN: We were in an inside quad on the main deck. The room and bathroom were larger than we had previously experienced. There was enough closets that each of us had our own. Adequate drawer space, storage in bathroom, and room under the beds for four large suitcases. There were two night stands, the shelf under the "fake" window, a small oval table, and the desk to accumulate all of our assorted stuff. The fourth bed was a couch by day and a bed by night. We requested a fridge which was promptly delivered right after we were allowed access to the cabin. Our room stewards Jerry and Henky were AMAZING!!! They seemed to always be around when we needed them (such as offering a power strip for our outlet shortage and helping us get the TV to turn on). Plenty of chocolate and towel animals during the trip.
SHIP: The ship was beautiful. There were plenty of little spots to take a seat and look out the window throughout the ship. Places were easy to find. The indoor pool area was nice but you had to be careful walking through on the wet floors. The library was a peaceful retreat as was the Explorer Lounge. Thoroughly enjoyed being able to walk right outside on the back of the ship on the main deck. There was a little bench to sit on and watch the scenery. It was not near as windy as the upper deck which was nice. The lower promenade deck provided the opportunity to walk laps outside.
FOOD: We went to the dining room the first night and did not care for the slow service so we opted to eat in the Lido for all meals the rest of the cruise. Some of the items in the dining room were served in the Lido also each night so we weren't missing much. The meat variety was good in the buffet though we felt there could have been a little less rice and a little more potato offered as a side. Desserts were pretty good and there was a good variety of ice cream every day. I liked the variety of juice at breakfast and the way the glasses were available already filled. The paninis were good in the afternoon lull between the official lunch and dinner times as was the small buffet and burgers available by the pool. We tended to order room service after 10pm and found it could be a little slow. Our order got confused a couple of times and the one time we put the card out for breakfast it never showed up as requested.
ENTERTAINMENT: Only went to two evening shows and they were okay. As far as the daily activities, there seemed to be a nice variety. Things people in our party participated in were the digital workshops, afternoon tea, movies in the Wajang Theater, indoor swimming pool, the hot tubs, and team trivia. We found both the cruise director Eric and DJ Greg moderately amusing. We cleaned up in the team trivia and I ended up with a bunch of DAM souvenirs which resulted in minimal shopping on the ship. Thoroughly enjoyed happy hour (4pm-5pm) every day at the bar in the Crow's Nest. The staff in there were great specifically Edwin, Sherwin, and Michael. The bar sits in the front of the ship with windows all around so we could enjoy drinks and the view. Actually saw a whale one day while in the Crow's Nest. There were two teens in our party who participated in the teen activities. Generally didn't see them as they were up in the Loft. I do know they got a little spoiled because apparently the Lido staff would deliver food and drinks up there. The young lady (Jocelyn) handling the teens seemed very patient, tolerant, and nice. My kids left the ship singing her praises and saying what a great time they had.
PORTS: We did not participate in any formal excursions. Juneau - We took the $14/ea round trip shuttle to the Mendenhall Glacier. My teens were impressed by the glacier calving. We walked to Nugget Falls and enjoyed the cool breeze and water from it since this day was little warmer than anticipated. We did go to the visitor's center at the glacier. Hubbard Glacier - though technically not a port it was definitely an experience. Two park rangers and two native gentlemen were brought on board to answer questions and provide information. The glacier was impressive and once again it was neat to watch the calving. Sitka - We had to tender to this one. This is the first time I noticed the "tenders" were actually life boats off the side of the ship. We walked out to the national park to view the totem poles. We also stopped at the Russian Bishop's House. We visited a grocery store ($5 for a 12 pack of soda) and did a little shopping. Ketchikan - We visited Creek Street, took the funicular up to the Fox Lodge, then walked down the stairs out back to the hatchery where we saw eagles and the fish processing area. We walked back into town, did a little shopping, and just made it back onto the ship before the 12:30pm boarding time. Victoria - There wasn't really anything to do (unless you wanted to pay $70/ea to go to Butchart Gardens) so we took the $7/ea round trip shuttle into town. We looked around a bit, did a little shopping, and headed back to the ship. I wished I had stayed on the ship and skipped this port.
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