119 Holland America Nieuw Amsterdam Senior Cruise Reviews

We choose this cruise for the timing, the price and the ports. We had not cruised Holland before and were very impressed. The crew is amazing, friendly, helpful and efficient. The food was delicious. The Pinnacle Grille, while ... Read More
We choose this cruise for the timing, the price and the ports. We had not cruised Holland before and were very impressed. The crew is amazing, friendly, helpful and efficient. The food was delicious. The Pinnacle Grille, while expensive option, was 5 star dining. We mostly ate at the buffet as we tend to eat light on vacation and this provided plenty of options, and was always fresh and good. Great Breakfast options. The entertainment was great. We had a couple of professionals (comedian and a juggler) that were very fun. There was also HAL crew shows. While acceptable and fun, not overly talented. Always plenty to do. This line is geared toward older adults, so most activities were subdued and more educational and information in nature. While we didn't attend most of these, some of our friends did and found the options perfect. The tender crew was amazing. We had very rough seas on the return from Grand Cayman, and the crew did great in just keeping us upright !. Some passengers got sick, thru no fault of HAL, but they were great in getting us back and on the ship safely. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Friends liked the itenary and chose the 21day package as they were interested in the ports, we joined them for the last 10 days. Cabin and cabin staff good. Ship and washrooms clean. Loved it when the captain announced a whale sighting. ... Read More
Friends liked the itenary and chose the 21day package as they were interested in the ports, we joined them for the last 10 days. Cabin and cabin staff good. Ship and washrooms clean. Loved it when the captain announced a whale sighting. Dining room short staffed, so food seldom hot when served - tasty, but only warm. Entertainment in Oceans Bar awful - the musicians were clearly bored and thought if they played really loud you wouldn't hear their off key notes. Didn't ask for requests and didn't seen to know what to play next. When they got more than one or two couples dancing, they either stalled until they sat down or played something to make them sit down. Piano bar also too loud. If I was looking for a loud ship, I would sail with Carnival. Holland America needs to decide who their target clientele is and cater to them. Offering 10, 11 and 21 day cruises limits their market to people with time to cruise. There is a strong market of retired people who enjoy either listening to music or dancing AND being able to chat at a table but they just don't get it or care. I'm sure if the Market (buffet) staff acted as bored and served food as poorly as the HAL Cats did their brand of music they would be shipped home. BB King music was also too loud to enjoy. Because guests are older and hearing not as good as it was, many wear hearing aides, making the blaring music painful and sound is muffled when so loud. A prime example was on the final sea day the Ocean Bar was full of people enjoying each other's company. Their voices filled the area with an inviting humm. At one time someone was playing background music. Then the band returned, many Ocean Bar guests left. Sales staff in the shops are bored and follow you with offers. The Digital Workshop with Windows 10 was well handled and busy. Classical music well attended and performed, guest performers on stage good, production number loud and we left after about 5-10 minutes. To top this not so great trip, we had to be shuttleted to the port parking garage. We were dropped as close as the shuttle driver could get us I guess. We were given two different directions on where to haul our luggage only to find out the elevator didn't work and we had to carry our bags up to our floor. Thanks parking services. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was our 3rd Holland American cruise, the second on this ship. We upgraded to a Signature Suite (room 6063), and loved it. We'd had a Neptune Suite once before, and felt this was more than enough room for two. A big plus was ... Read More
This was our 3rd Holland American cruise, the second on this ship. We upgraded to a Signature Suite (room 6063), and loved it. We'd had a Neptune Suite once before, and felt this was more than enough room for two. A big plus was the location on the ship. I hardly got lost, as it was very central. Embarkation was a breeze. We were group "A" to go on, and our room was ready. Our luggage was already in our room. No complaints with any of the ports. Out of 6 ports, we had only not been to 2 of them, so we were fine going off on our own and doing our own thing. We always take the 8 pm dinner and ask for a table of 6. We have never had a problem with our dinner mates, and this time, we had 4 wonderful people to sit with. We were almost the last table to leave the dining room each night, and I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. We truly enjoyed sitting down for a meal each night with these people and it really added to the enjoyment of our trip. While the food on board is very good, I think it may not be quite as good as other times. The hamburgers at the Dive In are EXCELLENT. Portion size isn't a problem. Had two visits to the Spa and thoroughly enjoyed each. I didn't get bombarded with sales pitches, which can be a problem in any spa. Only asked if I wanted to buy one product the one visit, nothing the first visit. We visited the casino a little too much, and had good and bad nights. That's to be expected, but overall, we didn't feel that we lost too much. My only complaint is the smoking in the casino. One person smoking can ruin it for many others. We left early many times over our 10 day cruise because of the smoking. Time for Holland America to say no smoking. The average age was a little older than other HA cruises we've been on, but we're retired so that wasn't a problem. We don't have children, so a cruise without many kids, for us, is a plus. I think I only saw two the whole cruise. One thing that Holland America excels at is their staff. Always a smile and polite word from each and every one of them. We had a fabulous time and next time we cruise, Holland America will certainly be the first cruise line we look at. We've become faithful to their brand. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We like HA line as the other guests seem to be somewhat in our age group (over 65). We chose this cruise because it docked at ports we hadn't visited before and it was a good get away from the cold. We booked a Neptune suite which was ... Read More
We like HA line as the other guests seem to be somewhat in our age group (over 65). We chose this cruise because it docked at ports we hadn't visited before and it was a good get away from the cold. We booked a Neptune suite which was very nice and didn't disappoint. We were disappointed that the activities on board appeared to be somewhat minimal. Also, there were no enrichment programs like we'd come to expect on HAL-I hope that isn't changing fleet wide. There was one program called "Pirates of the Caribbean" which was a disappointment in content and speaker. The cruise director gave talks about ports but those were disappointing as well. Service, entertainment and food was very good. Library could use more books. Lots of people coughing even when we came onboard and of course that spreads quite rapidly. Wish people would stay home if they're sick! Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We just returned from a wonderful 11 days in the Southern Caribbean, had beautiful warm weather although we returned to cold rain in Fort Lauderdale. The ship was well maintained and easy to travel in. We had a aft balcony room that ... Read More
We just returned from a wonderful 11 days in the Southern Caribbean, had beautiful warm weather although we returned to cold rain in Fort Lauderdale. The ship was well maintained and easy to travel in. We had a aft balcony room that was plenty of space for the two of us even though the balcony was smaller than some we have had in the past. The room had enough closet for us but needed more shelves in the bathroom and a few more drawers in the main cabin. We ate all our meals in the MDR and the food was good quality but a few nights the choices were weird. Luckily on most nights they offered a few items such as salmon and steak that you could have instead of the daily offerings. The Lido was plentiful for breakfast and lunch as was the burger place and the pizza place. My DH smokes and we had booked this cruise before they changed the rules on balcony smoking. The area provided was decent, with tables and chairs and cover from the elements, but it was usually crowded and even used by the ship employees. One evening they closed the entire area for a crew party and everyone was forced to go to the casino which in return became crowded. All in all we had a great time, wonderful table mates, beautiful weather and nice stops at some gorgeous islands. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We always take a holiday cruise and this fit our schedule. This is our 6th cruise on Holland America and our 25th overall. Nobody beats them for Pizza and Hamburgers and HotDogs on the Lido deck. Fresh and made to order. The BB King All ... Read More
We always take a holiday cruise and this fit our schedule. This is our 6th cruise on Holland America and our 25th overall. Nobody beats them for Pizza and Hamburgers and HotDogs on the Lido deck. Fresh and made to order. The BB King All Stars make the trip worthwhile even if you saw nothing else. The Production show, however, leaves a lot to be desired and they could certainly use some enrichment lectures during the day, or some other activities. We were pleased with both embarkation and debarkation. Fast, efficient and the cabins were ready when we got aboard rather than waiting on the Lido deck as we have done with other cruise lines. Since this was a Christmas cruise, I thought there could have been more emphasis on the season, such as a production show with a Christmas theme. Instead they gave us 2 viewings of White Christmas, which has to be at least 50 years old. Never the less, the cruise was enjoyable and of good value. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
I like Holland more now that I am older. We have cruised over 40 times and this is our 4th Holland cruise. The quieter, more refined atmosphere is a pleasure now. The decorations, fresh flowers, and classical music was a nice alternative ... Read More
I like Holland more now that I am older. We have cruised over 40 times and this is our 4th Holland cruise. The quieter, more refined atmosphere is a pleasure now. The decorations, fresh flowers, and classical music was a nice alternative to some other lines. I wish the Carnival Family of Cruise lines would give credit for overall cruises the way that Royal Caribbean and Celebrity does, We have cruised extensively on Carnival as well as Costa, Holland, and Princess but we get more perks on RC and Celebrity. MSC even matches you highest level from any other cruise line! These perks do make a difference to the passenger and costs the cruise lines very little. The staff was the most impressive asset. They have always been excellent. I do miss their countries on their name tags. My biggest disappointment was in the cost of excursions as well as the limited number of easy excursions for those who are older and physically challenged. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This was an excellent cruise with a very exciting places listed to visit the ship is modern very clean , and the stateroom we had was clean and well fitted. it was a veranda stateroom , the room staff really look after the rooms. ... Read More
This was an excellent cruise with a very exciting places listed to visit the ship is modern very clean , and the stateroom we had was clean and well fitted. it was a veranda stateroom , the room staff really look after the rooms. and each night do a towel welcome which are funny when you entre stateroom .cleaned each day food is excellent well presented and plenty of choice and staff fab shopping on board not overly impressed. you possibly would get same value in most cities , while they had end of season sales and there was a few bargains , overall shopping on board make up your mind on value against your own home prices entertainment was excellent , but we did not go to the b b show so cant comment on same front office staff very helpful and friendly . but would suggest you sign that you will settle your own gratuities. and don't want them added to your credit car keep an eye on these it may be best to book your off ship excursions with your travel agent , but do carefully look and pick same a very good one is the helicopter tour Juneau . and the local bus tour in Skagway is excellent of shore shopping is an experience , the cruise ship will be making suggestions re certain outlets and do tell you up front re commissions paid to ship, and that shops pay to be on programme again have your ideas in your own mind before you go so as to check for value we did acquire a watch at a store not mentioned by cruise liner at great value , so shop around , as the outlets told us they follow the cruise ships the experience of the glaciers is worth the cruise Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
My wife and I have had this trip on our bucket list for many years. We've always wanted to go to Alaska, though we have been a little leery of cruising. Our fear was that we'd feel cooped up on a cruise ship. Well Alaska was ... Read More
My wife and I have had this trip on our bucket list for many years. We've always wanted to go to Alaska, though we have been a little leery of cruising. Our fear was that we'd feel cooped up on a cruise ship. Well Alaska was everything we dreamed it would be, and cruising on the Nieuw Amsterdam was a marvelous experience. We flew into Vancouver the day before the cruise and frankly wish there would have been more time to explore the city. Vancouver is a beautiful city with very friendly people. We stayed at the Pan Pacific right on the water and conveniently located by the cruise dock. Great hotel! Embarkation was a fairly painless process, though there did seem to be an endless series of checkpoints for check in and customs. That being said, we were on the ship within 45 minutes of starting the process. No problem at all in my view. The important thing is that the process seemed organized. Once on board we explored the ship for awhile before sitting down to our first meal. The Nieuw Amsterdam is a beautiful ship, and looks like it just came off the production line. I can see no signs of wear and tear, and clearly, the ship is well maintained. The thing that struck us from the time we stepped on the ship until we stepped off was how friendliness of the Indonesian crew. Everyone was helpful and very accommodating. We stayed in Neptune Suite, since it was our first and possibly only cruise, I wanted this trip to be special. And it really was. The level of service that you get as a suite passenger is extraordinary. Our stewards for room 7055 were the very best! The room was spacious, always kept clean, and very comfortable. The bed slept well, and we had plenty of storage space. As to the food on board we sample most of the restaurants. All was good, but our favorite was Tamarind. We felt that Tamarind is the real jewel on the ship. It's up on the 11th deck and off the beaten path, which may explain why it was never crowded while we were on the ship. If you cruise on the Nieuw Amsterdam, make a point of eating in Tamarind. It is an Asian themed restaurant with superb food. As to the cruise itself, it would be really hard to ruin Alaska and it truly did not disappoint. Many whale sightings, a great hike to the Mendenhall Glacier, and so many other wonders. The cruise through Glacier Bay along was worth the trip. We saw a number of spectacular calving events. All of the ports offer a variety of excursions and shopping opportunities. Yes, there is some touristy stuff near all of the boat docks. Nothing surprising about that in my view, But get past those shops and there is so much to experience. I can recommend the White Pass Railway as a can't miss excursion, as well as the hike to Mendenhall Glacier. Entertainment on the ship was good. Nothing really stood out, but we enjoyed all of the shows and really enjoyed the BB King Blues Bar. Frankly, this was a bonus, as we really were on the ship to enjoy Alaska. Having some entertainment options was just a nice addition to the ship. We encountered some rough seas coming back to Vancouver but really didn't have much problem with it. Our cabin was mid ship, which certainly helps, but regardless of where we were on the ship it wasn't overly bothersome. Disembarkation was smooth and easy. We had a flight going out of Vancouver at 10:50 a.m. and knew that was cutting things close. But we were off the ship at 7:30 and on a shuttle bus to the airport. So it was handled superbly by Holland America. I guess it is easy to read this review and surmise that we had a really nice time. We did. It was our first cruise, and we were amazed by the experience. The crew of the Nieuw Amsterdam was just marvelous and Alaska was breathtaking. We will definitely cruise with Holland America again and will surely go back to Alaska. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This was our 10th cruises to Alaska but 1st with HAL. Balcony room, and accompanying two 83 years adults. What we like: Hard working staffs everywhere, clean ship. Entertainments: Bobby Wilson's Motown evening, Illusionist's ... Read More
This was our 10th cruises to Alaska but 1st with HAL. Balcony room, and accompanying two 83 years adults. What we like: Hard working staffs everywhere, clean ship. Entertainments: Bobby Wilson's Motown evening, Illusionist's performance; Adagio, violinist and piano duo at the 2nd floor lounge every evening; Foods: All the desserts and ice cream. good waffles, custom order Pizza. Dinner evening: Softshell crab(Monday), Arctic Char, Lobster(Wednesday), Wild mushroom soup, and Quails(Sunday). Johnny Walker taster party(free on Thursday evening, 8 differents types of scotch whiskeys served with JW blue label as highlight; same evening 2 bottles of Blue label sell for $310 usf less 10%). Staffs were not pressure to sell drinks. Not so crazy about: every morning 5am, all outside walking areas were sprayed with fresh water, as an early riser, very difficult for me to jog. As a photographer, the ship has no clear view to the very front of the ship, all front views have to view thru windows or plastic windshield on sky deck. No problem if you are not a serious photographer. The ship only stop at the front entrance of Tracy Arm and one has to buy a tour to see the Fjord. Ports: Juneau, I walk among the Main street all the way to the hill and hike into the mountain and has a good view of waterfall, not a difficult hike but do have some steep area and some mosquitoes ( not too many). Skagway, If you walk pass the town, there was an old cemetery and a pretty waterfall. No salmon sighting as the run was late this year.. Ketchikan: Walk up along the creek. The 1st run of salmon was near the end and dead salmons were all over the creek, the next run should come in in the next few weeks and fill the creek with lively fish. Whale sighting: 2nd day evening and 3rd day morning. One close unexpected sighting at 4am Thursday morning from the balcony ( yes, I am an early person). Overall, a very enjoyable cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
I should start by putting my basis for this rating into perspective. Last summer we cruised on the Allure of the Seas (Royal Caribbean) in the Mediterranean. You will not find a more modern ship with more amenities than Allure; however, I ... Read More
I should start by putting my basis for this rating into perspective. Last summer we cruised on the Allure of the Seas (Royal Caribbean) in the Mediterranean. You will not find a more modern ship with more amenities than Allure; however, I can honestly say I enjoyed the Nieuw Amsterdam more. If it takes rock climbing walls, Johnny Rockets, zip lines, vintage cars in the Mall of America-esque promenade to entertain you then this isn't the ship for you. The mid-sized ship experience allows you to feel like you're part of a family. There are numerous activities that likely fit into one of your interests. We thoroughly enjoyed, for instance, the three wine tasting events; however, when one goes on a cruise sometimes it's the downtime that we seek. For an Alaskan cruise, simply looking out the window is the entertainment you desired. Fit a cocktail hour (or three) into your day; find a seat by a window and enjoy a little piece of heaven. Dinner time was a highlight of each day. As the father of two elementary aged children I don't have the luxury of becoming a high end restaurant critic so I can honestly say the food was better than 95% of most meals I eat. It wasn't the food that made the experience memorable, it was the service. Our waitstaff felt like part of our family by the end of the week. They did not only provide excellent service but took a genuine interest in our kids in particular but all three generations of our family in attendance. Find a set dinner time that works for you and go to the same table every night. You will not regret it. We clearly live in a age of one-upping and how to out-flash the competition. While Royal Caribbean does an excellent job of staying on top in that regard, Holland America quietly pays attention to what people truly want in a cruise. When people think about taking a cruise they don't immediately hope it has an ice show or Johnny Rockets. They want tasteful elegance and comfort that focusses their attention outward which is really why they came on the cruise in the first place. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
This was our first cruise, along with two friends who hadn't cruised before either. We were all a little apprehensive, particularly with the idea of being herded on & off ship, into restaurants, etc. But we were very pleasantly ... Read More
This was our first cruise, along with two friends who hadn't cruised before either. We were all a little apprehensive, particularly with the idea of being herded on & off ship, into restaurants, etc. But we were very pleasantly surprised. We chose Holland America on the recommendation of our travel agent, as HAL caters to the more mature cruiser group, has mid-sized ships & dress is "country club casual". Positives: Excellent service - nothing is too much trouble. All the staff are so happy and, although extremely busy, always find the time to say a few words or enjoy a joke. Excellent food. Plenty of choice and well-presented. We ate in the Manhattan Dining Room four evenings, once each in the Pinnacle Grill, the Caneletto, and the Lido. We celebrated my 60th birthday in the Pinnacle Grill and this was truly fine dining - the best experience of the cruise. Excellent entertainment with good variety. Tendering at Ketchikan & Disembarkation - smooth & very well orchestrated. Our overall rating would have been excellent if it hadn't been for some improvement opportunities (embarkation & service in the Lido restaurant & Explorations Cafe). We provided constructive feedback to HAL - they acknowledged our feedback & made all appropriate management aware. Because of the way HAL responded, we are in the process of booking another cruise with them, and on the same ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
This was our first cruise and it exceeded our expectations. The cruise departed from our own city, for a good price so we booked it a month prior to the sailing. Our stateroom 5127 had a verandah and we would recommend booking one. We ... Read More
This was our first cruise and it exceeded our expectations. The cruise departed from our own city, for a good price so we booked it a month prior to the sailing. Our stateroom 5127 had a verandah and we would recommend booking one. We really enjoyed a glass of wine when the weather permitted watching the incredible scenery go by. The room was quiet and central, docking twice while we were still in bed and had not realized we were in port until we opened the curtains. Cleaned twice a day by the hard working crew. The water pressure in the shower was great with hot water immediately. Elemis products were of good quality, beds and pillows comfortable. Plenty of hangers in the closet. We had two meals in Tamarind, excellent, all but the desserts that we didn't finish. The cocktails in the Silk Lounge are interesting and very good with the bonus of a lovely view and quiet escape before dining in Tamarind. Pinnacle dining room for lunch at $10 a good value, try the Crab Cakes and the Sable Fish sandwich. Pinnacle for dinner is good but we think Tamarind a more interesting menu for the price if you are just choosing one. Canaletto was good too, however, the atmosphere isn't the same as the other two specialty restaurants but at only an additional $10 well worth it. We were quite surprised that none of the specialty restaurants were near to capacity on the four occasions we dined in them. Did happy hour from 4-5 in the Crow's nest a couple of days and the best time to have a drink as only $1 more for a second cocktail or beverage. Enjoyed the coffee bar in the Explorers lounge too as hubby a bit of a coffee snob. We carried on 6 bottles of wine. Two corkage free as they were consumed in our stateroom. The other 4 bottles incurred a corkage fee of $18 each. We saw this as an opportunity to enjoy quality wine we had been cellaring for many years with a chef prepared meal. It was easily done as the four bottles were stickered and corkage charged to our room as we embarked in Vancouver. We had a cloth wine bag that we transported the wine in to and from restaurants. We had open dining in the MDR. We made reservations usually the day before for 8:00. We never waited for more than 5-10 minutes before getting a table. Service and food there was good too. The ship is tasteful with plenty of art to discover. The ship was sold out but the only time it felt crowded was in the Lido, the rest of the time it was hard to believe it was at full capacity. If you are sailing out of Vancouver on the Nieuw Amsterdam and are interested in bringing on some of your own wine there is a BC Government Liquor store within four blocks of the ship. One of us shopped as the other sat with the luggage at the Pan Pacific Hotel. We arrived at 12:30 to embark in Vancouver and were aboard by 1:30. We understand that this was not everyone's experience so we would suggest allowing yourself ample time. Disembarkation for us was 15 minutes, long lines but it went smoothly for us. We had 3.5 days of rain and 3.5 of better and some excellent weather. The scenery on sunny days blew us away, spectacular. Absolutely recommend. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
I can't compare HAL to any other line as it's the only one I've cruised on. However, my Mother was on almost every line available in the US and Europe. After she tried HAL she stayed with them and became a 4 star mariner ... Read More
I can't compare HAL to any other line as it's the only one I've cruised on. However, my Mother was on almost every line available in the US and Europe. After she tried HAL she stayed with them and became a 4 star mariner until her passing. She introduced me to HAL in 2010 and I was hooked. Since then, I've introduced cruising to my 3 grown daughters. This was my 6th cruise and my daughters 2nd with HAL. If you're looking for glitz/glamor, brass and glass, rock climbing or water slides, this is not the line for you. But if you want elegance, fine dining, and total pampering then Holland America is a must try. My middle daughter JN and I just got back from the Western Caribbean on the Nieuw Amsterdam (April 3-10th). We thoroughly enjoyed our trip and have not one complaint. Our embarkation was without issue and our cabin was clean and ready. We found the ship's staff extremely welcoming and helpful. We ate at the MDR, Lido, Pinnacle, Drive In, NY Pizza and Tamarind. All meals were exceptional. The only disappointment was room service for breakfast on disembarkation day. Our order was incomplete. Totally understandable as the staff is under pressure to prepare for the new passengers boarding. My daughter took advantage of the gym several times. She has a gym membership at home and was pleased with the amount of and condition of the equipment aboard a ship. We went to the casino, she found a quiet spot she liked (Silk Den), she went to the BB King show and had a great experience. My entertainment/destination is the balcony with a glass of wine and my feet up. For me, it doesn't get any better than that. We both absolutely love Half Moon Cay. Clean, everything accessible and the beach was our favorite. The lunch BBQ was very good. My youngest daughter is considering renewing her vows on Half Moon Cay's chapel in 2017. We checked out the chapel and it was ideal. Getting the clam shell on Half Moon was worth every penny and I'll rent one again next cruise. We booked an excursion to Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman. I was disappointed in the beach but, I'm spoiled by Half Moon. I found the beach to be very narrow and uneven. Hard to walk. The water there was clean and clear but you really need swim shoes due to the coral and rocks. In summary, I enjoyed the cruise and the Nieuw Amsterdam was all that I expected and more. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This was my first cruise and it was a great experience. Being claustrophobic, I was unsure of my reaction to being out on the water and not able to see land. But, there is so much activity on the ship to distract you from those thoughts. ... Read More
This was my first cruise and it was a great experience. Being claustrophobic, I was unsure of my reaction to being out on the water and not able to see land. But, there is so much activity on the ship to distract you from those thoughts. The ship was very clean and well kept. The food was excellent!!! You could eat at anytime on the ship. I enjoyed dinner in the dinning room and sitting with new people. The staff was friendly and very attentive. I loved our cruise director Hammish. He was quite charming. Most of the guests on the ship were over 50. This was a plus for me. I enjoyed time with the other passengers. The bed in our room was extremely comfortable. I slept very well during the cruise. I attended the Marque show performed by the staff in the Sea Room. It was very good. I was impressed! I also watched a comedian perform. He was not very good. The band in the BB King Blues Bar was excellent. I thought the Trivia and DJ efforts by Eric (I believe he was the ship activity person) was lacking. He did not have much of a personality. Half Moon Cay was our first port. The beach was beautiful and relaxing. It was a wonderful first stop of my vacation. On Cayman Island I visited Cayman Spirits Co. as part of the A Taste of Cayman excursion. We enjoyed the generous pours of favored Rum at the Cayman Spirits Co. Good thing we had a designated bus driver! On Cozumel we did the Spectacular Snorkel & Chankanaab National Park excursion. The Tripping Cool company ran this tour and guide was phenomenal. I would definitely recommend Holland America. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This is our third cruise on the Nieuw Amsterdam and our 7th on Holland America. We got a balcony spa stateroom on Deck 10, which is our favorite location. We decided not to go to the formal nights, as we wanted total relaxation and that ... Read More
This is our third cruise on the Nieuw Amsterdam and our 7th on Holland America. We got a balcony spa stateroom on Deck 10, which is our favorite location. We decided not to go to the formal nights, as we wanted total relaxation and that is what we got! We always order room service for breakfast and it was served hot and on time. The buffet was great! A good selection of food. We had been on a Princess cruise that served leftovers from the dining room, and it was not appealing. The "On Tour" entertainment show was fine, and we watched the NCAA playoffs on our room TV. We also played some movies in our room. The pool was inviting and high tea was enjoyable, as always. We attended the champagne luncheon for past guests and got our collectible tiles. The stop in Cosumel was a blast. We ended up eating a Mexican lunch at Frogs, where they had a conga line, balloon animals, and many celebrating cruisers. We stopped at a jewelry store, and bought a beautiful cherry opal ring for our 25th anniversary (in October.) My husband has trouble walking, so we took the bicycle taxi back from the pier. The price was "for tips," so we gave the driver $5.00. There were plenty of souvenirs in the many shops. We signed up for a future cruise on the new Koningsdam in January. All in all, a wonderful week! Only thing we wish was faster was disembarkation, but that isn't HA's fault. Also, a notice said that a mini-massage was going to be given on deck, but the spa attendant there said she was alone and couldn't give it. She stood in front of a table of beauty products and then left. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This as my 70 cruise and my second on this ship dating back to 2011. Overall. This was the second worst cruise of the cruise I have taken. The fault is not with the ship which was maintained in excellent shape. Embarkation was very slow ... Read More
This as my 70 cruise and my second on this ship dating back to 2011. Overall. This was the second worst cruise of the cruise I have taken. The fault is not with the ship which was maintained in excellent shape. Embarkation was very slow and disembarkation was the same. Thankfully, I have Global entry which sped up the departure. The positives on the cruise was an excellent movie selection and a very nice cinema room. This was a good as the onboard activities were dreadful. The stateroom 4043 was a well appointed veranda suite with lots of closet space and a large deep balcony. Location was slightly forward near the forward elevators. The elevators were the fastest at sea. The negatives were numerous, ncluded a very poor quality of food with meats and fish below my standard. The entertainment, except for one night was dreadful. This included a Xylophone player, mentalist and 2 unfunny comedians. One production show was very good and another one just fair. The pool area was way over crowded and they even had the audacity to try and sell private seating! If you like to lie on a lounge chair in the shade you are out of luck. The fitness center what'd all Precore machines which lacked adjustments. They are the best for elliptical a/treadmills. Not enough wipes. We are Mariner 3 status with 170 days at seas, but found the perks to be non existent. Not even a cocktail party or some free internet. This was the worst treatment of repeat passengers on a cruise line. On this ship their were no enrichment lectures which was a total turn off. Dining for breakfast lunch lacked adequate staff to remove plates and provide beverages. The best choices turned out to be the salads. Port of calls were Half moon Cay (Satisfactory), Georgetown (Boring), and Key West (OK). Once again Cozumel was cancelled due to rough seas which is the third time for us. Overall, their are much better choices that provide better value. Holland America has really gone downhill in my opinion. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Overall we enjoyed our cruise! The ship was extremely stable in rough seas and the pools , which were wonderful , were kept open! It was our 8 th cruise on various lines including MSC , Celebrity, Norwegian , and Princess. We enjoyed the ... Read More
Overall we enjoyed our cruise! The ship was extremely stable in rough seas and the pools , which were wonderful , were kept open! It was our 8 th cruise on various lines including MSC , Celebrity, Norwegian , and Princess. We enjoyed the fresh flowers, great service, movies available in the room on flat screen TV , lounge entertainers , and great food! The ship is kept sparkling clean !! The negatives were the poorest theatre entertainment we have ever experienced! Even long term fans of Holland America complained that it was way below average! There was only one standing ovation show and we are use to one - three ovations every night on these other lines! If the theatre is important to you, then choose another line. We found the current movies in the room , (which were easy for even seniors to use! ) , helped a lot to compensate . Also , if you love good pools and a lovely promenade deck with great lounge chairs, then this ship is perfect! I have to compliment the captain for keeping the ship so stable in rough seas! ( could not dock at Cozemel!) Another negative issue was the room temperatures were freezing and you needed fleece , not just a light shoulder covering!! Even the room temperature was difficult to regulate and others commented on this problem. We found the vibe of the ship very relaxing and the customer service everywhere was excellent! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
The cruise was reasonably priced and we wanted to get away to some warm weather. Overall the cruise was excellent, staff were very polite and accommodating, food was superb, ports of call were mostly those we had previously visited. ... Read More
The cruise was reasonably priced and we wanted to get away to some warm weather. Overall the cruise was excellent, staff were very polite and accommodating, food was superb, ports of call were mostly those we had previously visited. Overall we found the entertainment to be average. We were delayed getting to San Juan as we had a medical emergency on board at Turks and Caicos. When we booked the trip, Tortola was a port of call; but for some unexplained reason this port of call was cancelled. This was a back to back cruise out of Port Everglades. We cannot understand why a cruise line would go down to the Caribbean for a week and then turn around back to Port Everglades and go right back down. We knew this at the time of the booking so our comments are more of an observation rather than a criticism. This was our third cruise with Holland America, the others were five weeks to the South Pacific and one week to Alaska. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Congrats to HAL for providing an outstanding cruise in every respect. The service, the food,the ship itself. We especially liked the Adagio (pianist and violinist) in the lounge every night after dinner. Hope HAL continues to contract ... Read More
Congrats to HAL for providing an outstanding cruise in every respect. The service, the food,the ship itself. We especially liked the Adagio (pianist and violinist) in the lounge every night after dinner. Hope HAL continues to contract with them for future cruises. The Tamarind Restaurant was incredibly good. We enjoy asian foods, but never have found one that offered the superb menu that was offered at the Tamarind. Would highly recommend it, over the other specialty restaurants (Canaletto and Pinacle Grill, although each was very good). The service could not have been better. Each service person was most helpful and courteous. The laundry service was extraordinary, they even ironed my under drawers. The ship was spotless! No matter where you were, there was a crew member cleaning something. The only critical comment would relate to the first nights entertainment. Since the average age of the passengers had to be between 60 and 80, the music offered was unrecognizable. Gershwin, Porter, Herman, and songs sung like Tony Bennett would have been much more appropriate. We are looking forward to the next cruise on HAL, hopefully the new Korningsdam that starts later this year. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Holland America has been declining for years. This was my 7th and last cruise with HAL.This particular cruise they failed to disembark guest at the Grand Cayman Port. Instead of admitting the port was too crowded, they lied to the guest ... Read More
Holland America has been declining for years. This was my 7th and last cruise with HAL.This particular cruise they failed to disembark guest at the Grand Cayman Port. Instead of admitting the port was too crowded, they lied to the guest and said the seas were too rough to tender to shore. Everyone on the ship knew it was lie.The Captain even came out to the Lido just to get first hand account of what the guest were saying. The seas were calm and other ships were tendering just fine but he was insistent on giving one lame excuse after the next. I emailed the Grand Cayman Port when I returned home and this a quote from the Port. "The Nieuw Amsterdam did not disembark passengers in Cayman on Jan 2 due to engine trouble and left the Cayman waters shortly after it attempted to tender passengers." I also purchased art work from Park West Galleries which I never received. After months of calls and emails between Park West and HAL the refund was finally approved by Park West but the credit has to come from HAL. As of August 8th, they still have not refunded my money and now refuse to respond to my emails now that they can't blame Park West any longer. 8 months and still no art or refund. As for the ship and staff, the Lidos staff seemed annoyed by the smallest request from a glass of water to where to find the butter. Guest were clearly an intrusion in their routine. The dining room staff was efficient but the food was slow to come out of the kitchen and they had to keep apologizing for the delays. Dinner service was two hours. The ship was small and veranda cabin was very cramped. Much smaller than their other ships. Overall, HAL has been on the decline for many years and each year they seem to get worse. I won't be sailing with them again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
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 ... Read More
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. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Three friends from childhood who graduated high school together in 1971 decided to take a girlfriend getaway on the beautiful Nieuw Amsterdam. I, a seasoned cruiser of 25--Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Carnival, Princess, Oceania, and ... Read More
Three friends from childhood who graduated high school together in 1971 decided to take a girlfriend getaway on the beautiful Nieuw Amsterdam. I, a seasoned cruiser of 25--Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Carnival, Princess, Oceania, and Cunard--will tell the tale as I have something to compare it with. Stayed at the Comfort Suites near the port and enjoyed the transportation both from the airport and to Port Everglades. We arrived quite early to the port and walked right up to check-in. Of course, it meant sitting in the terminal for a couple of hours, but that was kind of fun as we watched hundreds of passengers standing in the line and getting checked in. Excitement for all! Overall impression of the ship: Just the right size, spotlessly clean, elegant understated décor. We were in a triple occupancy balcony cabin and once we found a spot for all our "stuff" (which was kind of a daunting task), we didn't feel crowded at all. Plenty of drawer space and closets. and don't forget HA provides drawers under the bed, too. Loved the bathroom with a tub, which made showering much more enjoyable than the typical tiny cruise ship showers. We dined most nights in the main dining room, and one night at Canaletto (Italian) and one night at the Pinnacle Grill. Well worth the upcharge! Service was slow in the dining room and perfect at the Pinnacle. Entertainment: up and down. We LOVED the B.B.King All Stars group, but did not care for the piano bar guy or the band in the atrium. We especially loved the "Dancing with the Stars" events. We enjoyed each port and booked some excursion in some. Grand Turk we went to Margaritaville (fun), they have a giant swimming pool, beach, and even a flowrider! Loved the way the beach is right next to the ship...no need to book an excursion at this port. San Juan we did the hike thru the rain forest, and believe me when I say, it was RAINING! Come prepared, or buy an overpriced poncho! Also, it is pretty strenuous climbing and hiking, especially over wet rocks. Still, very interesting. At St. Thomas, we went on the Kon Tiki, which is basically a party boat with rum punch flowing like water, and dancing the limbo. They did take us to a beach for an hour or so. The other two did the horseback riding excursion at Half Moon Cay, and felt it was a money making opportunity for the photographer, with little time actually riding the horses. Overall, I would recommend this ship to anyone who is looking for a relaxing time with some fun thrown in here and there. Not for you, if you want rock climbing walls, water slides, etc and a lot of activities for young kids. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
I must state my point of view. As a "platnium" NCL Cruiser I've read all the glowing CC reviews of HAL & so had my expectations raised pretty high. We booked a 20 day Panama Canal trip with HAL & then decided that ... Read More
I must state my point of view. As a "platnium" NCL Cruiser I've read all the glowing CC reviews of HAL & so had my expectations raised pretty high. We booked a 20 day Panama Canal trip with HAL & then decided that if we took a 7 day Caribbean cruise on the same ship we'd have some familiarity for our longer cruise. My sister-in-law joined us for this cruise & we all shared the same cabin. Fastest & most efficent embarkation ever. Our Fwd veranda stateroom was ready upon boarding @ 11:15! Stateroom was smaller than I expected & the balcony was tiny. Freshened up & headed to the Manhattan DR. (Ashore a HAL employee told me the MDR would not be open but I had read that the MDR was no longer restricted to Star Mariners, so I went to check it out.). Sure enough we were seated at a nice table at the stern, by the window...lovely. Another couple sat at our table & we chatted away. As we placed our orders a single lady was brought to our table & so we were 6. The orders came & the other couple immediately complained that their orders were wrong. The soup was now a salad & the tea was coffee, the dressing on the other salad was creamy instead of balsamic vinegar. This was straightened out & then the main course came & well done was bloody. This couple were on the second half of a 14 day cruise, b2b, & commented that the Nieuw Amsterdam was not up to the usual high HAL standards. They were 3* Mariners, this trip would make them 4*, & they were disappointed in the quality of food & the poor diningroom service. As it turned out...we ate lunch, if not ashore, & dinner in the Manhattan DR every day. I found "Dine as you wish" is actually Dine when we tell you". Your choice is before 5:15 or after 8:00. No other times were available although I asked about today? tomorrow? how about 3 days from now...7,7:15,7:30,7:45,NO! 8:00? O.K. Every meal we joined others, or others joined us for dinner. The single lady joined us for all but one dinner. Every meal there was a problem was someones order, or it just didn't come at all. Many a HAL fan who joined us commented that they found the service lacking & not up to the usual high HAL standards. The food was good, not gormet, but about the same quality as any local restaurant. It's unfair to compare HAL's enertainment with the high quality of great entertainment you find on NCL. BUT, this had to be a new low. The only real quality entertainment was in the Piano Bar with the "Piano Man". The rest was really amateurish or just plain poor. The daily program was not delivered to our cabin on the first 2 days, showed up for 3 days & then forgotten about. Everything was alright, but not real good. "Not up to the (described) HAL stardards. I hope it improves for our Panama cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Had a good cruise but not as good and the old ship built in1937. Nobody showed up for the Cruise Critic on the Monday as planned except another couple and my self. Where was everybody? Cabin was fine and food good. Met some nice people ... Read More
Had a good cruise but not as good and the old ship built in1937. Nobody showed up for the Cruise Critic on the Monday as planned except another couple and my self. Where was everybody? Cabin was fine and food good. Met some nice people too. Traveling alone. Only one good show at night on board. I was on the Eastern cruise. Some did a back to back. Dining room service was very poor.They were very slow in getting our dinner to us. I drove down from Cape Canaveral. Got on the ship a good time.Did my own parking at Embassy Suites and got the shuttle to the ship. Dining was fair as there but there a long wait for dinner. The day we left the ship I had the shuttle back to my car. Ship was clean all the time . I was a bit disappointed with Holland America compared to other ships I have sailed on. I thought I had a better cruise ship when I sailed on Princess. I am a single senior and have been on many cruises of different lines. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Nieuw Amsterdam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.1
Entertainment 4.5 3.5
Public Rooms 4.5 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 4.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.1

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