2 Holland America Noordam Holiday Cruise Reviews

Embarking was a breeze - good start. Cabin 4010 - very nice, balcony cabin- clean and spacious. Room attendants greeted us and provided a card with their names and contact details. I was very disappointed that the ship had no ... Read More
Embarking was a breeze - good start. Cabin 4010 - very nice, balcony cabin- clean and spacious. Room attendants greeted us and provided a card with their names and contact details. I was very disappointed that the ship had no "wow" factor, compared to 2 Royal Carribbean Ships I have sailed on - it was very boring,no fabulous staircase or art work to look at. The meals in the a la carte restaurant were excellent along with the service. No problems getting served at the bars. The croupiers in the casino were pretty dull and one of them kept making mistakes. The entertainment was dire - especially for Xmas - very much same old same old as the singers stayed with the ship, unlike RC where they fly in and out. One of the singers should really not have been there. I have to say, in the end, we stopped going to the shows but went on the last night and it was just as bad. Photographers were terrible - we had some formal shots done, only one was full length and showed off my lovely new long gown but sadly the faces were out of focus. In one really nice photo I had my eyes closed and the photographer told me that they were not closed - in the print, my eyes were closed! Didn't buy any photos as they were poor. Shore excursions were very "tourist trap based". Diving excursion got cancelled as their boat had broken down, so we found a dive centre ourselves and dived - for half the cost the ship was charging. Internet is ridiculously priced - don't understand why they charge so much. No good for teenagers trying to study. Very helpful and friendly staff all round the ship without exception. I would not recommend this cruise line for families with older teenagers - the no alcohol rule was not such an issue - although it was a shame they were not allowed to join us with some champagne on Xmas day - but there was nothing for them to do in the evening - this ship better suits the older generation. Disembarkation again was a breeze - very good and efficient. We won't use this cruise line again as it does not have the glamour appeal that you would expect on a cruise ship - no champagne on Xmas Day and poor entertainment….. RC here we come…..   Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
This was our first ever cruise with any line - thought it would be a perfect option for a Christmas get away. We were lucky to have a free upgrade from a SZ class (Superior Verandah) to a Deluxe - nice perc (in principal). Loved ... Read More
This was our first ever cruise with any line - thought it would be a perfect option for a Christmas get away. We were lucky to have a free upgrade from a SZ class (Superior Verandah) to a Deluxe - nice perc (in principal). Loved having access to Neptune and Pinnacle for Breakfast. Let me start our by saying we did have a decent time - note that this isn't really a complaint, its meant to better educate other cruisers in making decisions. There was a big gap between our expectations and the reality of what you get on this ship. We expected luxury and high end - quite honestly didn't get that. The staff and crew were exceptional - I would never imply they did a poor job (in fact we felt horrible when one of the staff admitted to hating having missed the last 10 xmas's at home to work). My wife and I are both 33 - the majority of the cruisers were 50+ but there was a good mix of families and children. One of the staff mentioned they usually have 40 kids - this cruise had 400. The surprise in all of this was that they really didn't seem to change their planned activities around that. Dining in the Vista and Lido was basically like eating at a 2 star restaurant - if you were paying to eat there, it would be one of those places I wouldn't go back to. The meals seems to get better as the cruise continued but the majority was bland and uninspiring. The Pinnacle Grill was spectacular - this is probably what ruined it for us as we expected that level of food elsewhere which obviously isn't possible. Our Deluxe room was very unimpressive - the bathroom was literally what I would see in an old Holiday Inn (cracked and missing grout/plastic counter tops and fittings). I am critical of this since I travel for work 4-5 times a month, I know in 2 seconds the quality of accommodations - this wasn't up to what I expected. The wrap around deck was wonderful to have. The TV was snowy - even when playing their own promo videos which are on constant loop. If we had paid the premium for that room - my opinion would be much harsher. The entertainment wasn't for us - specifically the Vista nightly 8/10pm items. There were 3 nights where people were walking out in large numbers. Enjoyed the piano room - the classical quartet in the Hudson room and some of the events. Tried some of the paid daily items like the mixology class - it was an awkward demo between the bartender and the director - not worth $12.50 per. Our most entertainment came from daily Bingo (kinda sad when its one of the only items on the itinerary that you look forward to). We missed 1 port due to weather - I understand it happens. The response seemed poor though - refund of port credits (14.78 /p) and a free glass of champagne at dinner (5.95) - its SOP apparently but still seems light to me. Had a good time at the other stops though - loved Half Moon Cay. All in all it comes down to our expectations being too high for what was offered. The Hilton Marina where we stayed the night before embarkation was light years beyond the fit/finish of this 4 year old ship. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
Noordam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.8
Family 2.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.6
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 3.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.3

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