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About Esme

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    Cool Cruiser
  1. Mark - if you need an extra blanket, look in the drawers at the foot of the beds - we found a couple of lovely soft blankets in there. Also a good place to store some our stuff because as you say, drawer space is limited.
  2. No she was sold to Thomson cruises and is sailing as the Thomson Celebration. See a pix of her under her new livery here. http://www.shipspotting.com/modules/myalbum/photo.php?lid=45561 Personally, I think she looks terrible. We had many enjoyable cruises on her as the Noordam.
  3. I believe there will be two. This is the information I received. Italian Christening of the ms' "Noordam On Saturday, April 2nd a Coin Ceremony and the shipyard’s Christening of the ms' "Noordam" was held at the shipyard outside of Venice. This is one of the most important occasions after the keel laying of a ship for the shipyard and the shipbuilders. In the first part of this ceremony a coin is placed in the radar mast. This particular part of the ceremony goes back to the time of the wooden sailing vessels, where the tradition was to place a coin under the foot of the main mast before the mast was lowered on to the keel. This coin would remain there for the life of the ship and was believed to bring luck to the ship. Due to the fact that Cruise vessels do not have a real mast anymore other than the Radar mast, a small window is made in the front of this mast and the coin is placed behind this window. You will find this window on all our ships that have been built since HAL has been part of the Carnival Corporation. The second part of the ceremony is the Christening itself. For this ceremony Mrs. Margareta van Biljouw (the wife of HAL Captain Hans van Biljouw) was chosen to be the Godmother. The Godmother wishes the ship well during her sailing life. Using a small ax the Godmother cuts the wire holding the champagne bottle that smashes on one of the letters of the bow name. Immediately after this the valves in the dock gate are opened and the water rushes in to fill the dock that ultimately wets the bottom of the ship and floats her off the building blocks. The ship will be “officially” dedicated in New York City prior to the first revenue cruise. Greg - he may be the Captain for the first voyage and then someone else may take over. I am not sure about this.
  4. I have just learned that Mrs. Margareta van Biljouw, wife of Captain Hans van Biljouw, has been chosen to be the Godmother of the new Noordam. I think it's wonderful that they have chosen the wife of one of HAL's very popular Captains to do the honours. Although I have never met Mrs. van Biljouw, I have sailed with Captain Hans and their 2 daughters, who used to work on the ships, many times. I am sure many of you out there have sailed with the Captain and his lovely wife.
  5. You've got to be kidding - this has got to be a joke. I can just see everyone at Ship's Services ROTFLTAO with this request. They get a lot of weird requests but probably never one like this. :rolleyes: :D
  6. madaroch - as long as you leave the $10.00 per day per person on your bill, you can still give extra money to whoever you want. They will not have to pool it. However, if the $10.00 is removed, then anything extra they get they have to put into the pool. As far as I am concerned, the $10.00 isn't that much more than we used to give - $3.50 per day for cabin steward and dining room steward + 2.00 per day for the Asst. waiter. We always added to this anyway, so don't see a difference. I don't know what you would give for a 2 year old child, but I would give them something extra - don't think the $10.00 applies to them, but I am not sure. Got our first taste of old man winter here in Ontario yesterday and of course lots of accidents. I know you have already had snow. :)
  7. Judy, don't quote me, but I think in the early days of HAL there was a small sailing ship named "Haelve Mein". I will look it up on The Unnoficial HAL web site, to see if I am correct. Some of HAL's ships have a "Haelve Mein" - (see HAL's deck plans of the Statendam - room is listed as Half Moom) room which is a room used for meetings by groups and private parties. We attended a VIP party in there once. I may have gotten the spelling incorrect. Just checked the site and it is "under construction". Host Doug may know the answer to this. Jeff - just don't fall asleep down in your secluded spot, have someone steal your clothes, and then miss the last tender back to the ship. :D That would be a catastrophe. :p Happened to cousins in Hawaii :eek:
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