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Found 188 results

  1. Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (starboard to) from 0530-1700. She has an RSVP charter. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (10 Feb 0800-1600); George Town, Grand Cayman (12 Feb 1000-1700); Cozumel, Mexico (13 Feb 1300-2000); Key West, Florida (15 Feb 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (16 Feb a0700) Also in port are Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0500-1600, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, Carnival Magic will be at pier 4 from 0400-1600, Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0515-1630, and Adventure OTS at pier 29 from 0430-1730. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. Also, Koningsdam (0700-1700) and Oosterdam (0800-1800) will be in Aruba. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Koningsdam and Veendam on Wednesday, 12 February.
  2. Has anyone recently attended the Aficionado Dinner on the Nieuw Statendam? We sail in less than two weeks and the dinner just came to my attention. I could not find detail on the HAL site. Would love to hear your experiences. Thank you. BaltimoreCruise
  3. We have a delay getting off ship for some unknown reason. Walk off started at 8. It is now 8:25 and they have stopped people getting off. Just said bags have not been offloaded.
  4. Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 21 (starboard to) from 0615-1700. She is going on a 7-day Eastern Caribbean cruise. Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (04 Feb 1100-1800); San Juan, Puerto Rico (05 Feb 1100-2300); St Thomas, US Virgin Islands (06 Feb 0800-1700); Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (08 Feb 0800-1500); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (09 Feb a0700) Koningsdam will be at pier from 26 (starboard to) from 0530-1700. She is headed off on a 10-day Southern Caribbean Seafarer cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (03 Feb 0800-1500); Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos (04 Feb 1100-1800); Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (05 Feb 0800-1800); Kralendijk, Bonaire (07 Feb 0800-1800); Willemstad, Curacao (08 Feb 0700-2300); Oranjestad, Aruba (09 Feb 0700-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (12 Feb a0700) Also in port are Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0500-1600, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, Caribbean Princess at pier 4 from 0545-1600, and Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0515-1630. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. Next up: Eurodam, Oosterdam, and Veendam on Wednesday, 5 February.
  5. We will be on the February 23, 2020 sailing and looking forward to our first cruise with Holland America! I have a silly question- does this ship have self serve soft ice cream stations? We have watched a few videos and I didn’t see any. Seems silly but that is something I look forward to. Thank you in advance for your help!
  6. Another eight cruise ship day in Port Everglades. Eurodam will be at pier 19 (starboard to) from 0445-1700. She is doing a 10-day Panama Canal Sunfarer cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (27 Jan 0800-1500); Oranjestad, Aruba (29 Jan 1300-2300); Willemstad, Curacao (30 Jan 0800-1600); Panama Canal (Cruising Canal) (01 Feb 0500-0500); Colon, Panama (01 Feb 1500-2000); Puerto Limon, Costa Rica (02 Feb 0730-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (05 Feb a0700) Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (port to) from 0500-1700. She is headed out on a 7-day Tropical Caribbean cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (27 Jan 0800-1700); Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos (29 Jan 0800-1700); Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (30 Jan 0800-1700); Key West, Florida (01 Feb 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (02 Feb a0700) Also in port are Regal Princess at pier 21 from 0530-1600, Crown Princess at pier 2 from 0545-1600, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, Carnival Magic at pier 4 from 0400-1600, Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0545-1630, and Adventure OTS at pier 29 from 0430-1730. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. For the Addicts: Rotterdam will be in Aruba on Monday, 27 January. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Veendam on Wednesday, 29 January.
  7. I have searched high and low on the forums (I know it’s annoying to the regulars to answer questions over and over) and the HAL website. Cannot find the answer to this: Do Vista Suites on Nieuw Statendam receive early boarding/disembarkation privileges? I’ve read all about how little you gain from a Vista Suite, in comparison with other, higher ranking suites, but cannot find confirmation of what my travel agent told me about receiving those privileges. Thanks in advance!
  8. I have tried to locate more information on the cabanas by the pool on the Nieuw Statendam. Is the charge of the cabana per person in the cabin or just per cabin? We are in an inside cabin, so I thought this would be a nice way to enjoy being by the pool. Would it be worth it to by the cabana for the week or just a day or two? How do you book the cabanas before the cruise starts? Thanks for any help!
  9. Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (port to) from 0530-1700. She is doing a 7-day Legendary Rhythm and Blues charter. Costa Maya, Mexico (21 Jan 0900-1700); Santo Tomas De Castilla, Guatemala (22 Jan 0800-1700); Roatan, Honduras (23 Jan 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (26 Jan a0700 Also in port are Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0515-1630, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, and Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0500-1600 The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. Also, Koningsdam (0700-1700) and Rotterdam (0800-2300) will be in Aruba. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Koningsdam and Veendam on Wednesday, 22 January.
  10. Hi all I did try hard to find the answer to this easy question. Which deck is set standard seating dining on deck 2 or 3?. Also is late seating still 8pm ?. Any thoughts on table choices for 2 - table 230,224 look good .
  11. Booked a bump out room and would like any information on these. The room will be bigger 230sq. Ft. Anyone have a picture? I can’t find any. Thanks
  12. I wanted to post a trip report on our recent HAL Nieuw Statendam sailing. The TL;DR version was that we enjoyed the cruise and purchased future cruise credits. As a bit of background, DW and I are both mid-30s and experienced cruisers with this being our 4th New Year's holiday sailing (RCL 12/08, PCL 12/17, HAL 12/18). I wouldn't describe us as food or entertainment "connoisseurs", but we've been to various broadway shows, eaten at a few fancy restaurant, and lived in the "big city" for a while. Embarkation went smoothly. I think we got to the port about 9:45 AM and waited outside in line for about 15 mins, then were allowed in to clear port security, get cruise cards, and then wait to board the ship. Boarding started right around 11:30 AM and we were in group 1, which boarded following handicap and "priority" boarding groups (e.g., suites and multi-star mariners). When they allowed us to board they said that rooms were already open for guests. We booked as a balcony guarantee and were assigned Cabin VD7049 about 3-4 days before embarkation. This was a forward cabin basically in line with the elevator hallway of the front elevators, it was also a "ambulatory accessible" room which had a shower (no tub) with fold down chair and some grab handles in the shower. The room was also a connecting room, meaning there was a door that could be opened to the adjacent stateroom (VD7051). I think the room size and layout was fine. The downsides to this cabin were that the door seemed less soundproof than a full wall (we could hear muffled phone calls and talking from our neighbors, but nothing too disruptive) and there is a butler closet opposite VD7047 so we got some noise from the stateroom attendants in the AM. We aren't normally trying to sleep in on a cruise so not a biggie for us, but could be a frustration for some people. This is very subjective, but I never got comfortable on the bed the entire cruise and felt like the mattress had an indent and already felt worn out - in contrast DW said she thought the bed was fine; as I said though this is a very subjective thing. Stateroom attendants were FANTASTIC, and they even did towel animals starting the 2nd day and onward. We did the fixed 8p seating for dinner and requested a table for 2. Our table request came through, but one thing to note was that the table was a 6-person table for the early seating and then they removed the table expander and got two 2-person tables at the same spot for the late seating. Food in the MDR was all tasty and well executed, I've got pictures/pdfs of the menus and will try to get those posted sometime soon. Breakfasts in Lido got repetitive, and it felt like it could be hard to find seating during busy periods. We ended up doing room service for breakfast 3 of the mornings. Dinners in Lido were good, some dishes overlapped with the MDR (although they suffered from being served buffet style versus plated for MDR service) but the menus were by no means identical. Service in the MDR was attentive with prompt delivery and clearing of plates, they also took care to remember food preferences and even seating. Service in the Lido was slower and not very impressive, but nothing overtly bad. Just slow and gave they impression that they weren't trying very hard there. We remarked that these were some of the best MDR dinners we remember having. The rollout of the "cruise and travel director" w/EXC talks is interesting. Our C(T)D did a good job delivering the EXC talks (e.g., history of HAL, and a couple nature themed talks, plus one on off-shore banking and cryptocurrency focusing on the Bahamas). But it felt like there was less offered during the day on the ship than previous years. I liked the talks and learned something from them... but also felt a little bored other parts of the sea days in particular. If you like reading it was fine, but if you like programmed activities you may find it a bit sparse. In contrast, I preferred where the CD did more programming and then a separate person did additional talks (we were lucky last year on Oosterdam and we had a naturalist on board who did some talks on marine biology and ecology). Naturalist in the Caribbean is unusual though, and for cost reasons I get how the new CTD role is a way to help reduce overhead. Nieuw Statendam has a nice sound and visual system integrated into the main theater. Instead of a live band/orchestra they used canned music and then had a dance troupe of 6 people called Step One. The first show, "Humanity", was more of a dance show and was great. The second show, "Stages", attempted to be more of a narrative show told through dance and was not at all engaging or entertaining (DW fell asleep, and I may have nodded off a few times). Talking to another couple the next day, they also thought it was a pretty lackluster show. Nit picky, but even the costuming was poorly thought out for stges as one of the guys was in a light gray suit that had horrible sweat marks all over by the end of the show. We skipped the magician and the other performance done by a musical duo, but chatter was that both were solid and the magician was especially entertaining/good. Being a holiday sailing I think the pax population skewed younger and more multi-generational than your average HAL sailing. I wouldn't hesitate to travel with kids during a holiday sailing, but I imagine kids might feel like a small minority outside of the traditional kid-heavy sailings like holidays and school breaks. We also had two affinity groups on board, Dancers at Sea who would take over Billboard Lounge to practice dancing during the day (and who displaced our Meet and Greet I might add), and a Baptist christian group called "Turning Point Ministries". TPM didn't displace any of the entertainment as far as I could tell, but I definitely heard some weird conversations in elevators and public spaces. I've always been taught that religion is not considered polite conversation in public, and hearing people randomly start pushing both religious and political views in the public spaces on a ship is not my cup of tea. I will actively try to avoid affinity groups like TPM moving forward. Helpfully, they all had distinctive cruise cards they wore on board and also often carried their TPM specific programs. Ports were Amber Cove, San Juan, St. Thomas, and HMC AC: we did the taste of Dominican tour through the ship which involved tasting coffee, rum, and chocolate across several different stops, as well as learning about cigars and how they're hand rolled. It also included a stop for lunch at a local "farm" (more of a touristy farm than actual farm imho) which consisted of rice over sancocho (a local meat and veggie stew). San Juan: We were there on New Years Day, so I think we had fewer tour options than other times of the year. Most stores and shops were open, but closed earlier due to the holiday. We just walked Old San Juan as we've been to SJU/OSJ several times including a long weekend visit there. El Morro is always a fun spot to visit, and OSJ is easy to tour on your own. We also hit up CVS for some small toiletries and gifts - CVS and Walgreens are both close to OSJ port with CVS prices running a little cheaper (but little further from the port). I picked up local PR coffee at the drug stores and it was cheaper than any of the coffee options at gift shops. St. Thomas: We just did a taxi independently to the beach, and then taxi back. Taxi prices are fixed, but you may end up waiting a bit if it's a bigger bus taxi as they'll try to find a few more pax before they head out, or try to add a few pax as they pass through town back to the ship. HMC: We were lucky and cleared to tender, the previous week they had to scrap this stop due to weather. We had two ships in port, so it was fairly crowded (although not terrible) and if you want more space just keep walking further down the beach. Our ship was first on site, so we had the pick of the chairs and clamshells. Clamshells were sold out by the time we embarked on the ship, so that's one I'd recommend pre-purchasing and especially if there's 2 ships visiting. The line for the tender at the end of the day was long and slow, we got in line at ~2:40 (last tender was posted as 3:30 for our ship) and I think we took a solid half hour to get loaded and actually leave the island. I think we'd have been better either leaving earlier, or just waiting to take the last tender at 3:30. New Years Eve: Surprisingly, NYE was not a gala night but instead was noted as "festive attire". They did a fancy gala-style dinner in the MDR that evening, complete with fancy menus (which did say Gala <shrug>). NYE dinner was also the lobster tail night, so what I would consider the fancier of the two gala night menus imho. The main event was a party on the pool deck that was scheduled to start at 10:45. They had reserved the couches on the deck overlooking the pool deck (not sure if it was held for suite guests or a separate "vip" pkg) and seating around the deck was pretty sparse. Entertainment was the BB King blues band and singers, and they may have been handing out some free beverages around midnight? As parties go, this was nothing close to what we experienced on Crown Princess a few years back - but I'd give it a solid 7/10. If you want a lively party with a DJ and dancing I'd look elsewhere though. Disembarkation was smooth, with no complaints. We did Luggage Direct, form was left in our door "mailbox" something like 2nd day and was due mid-week to guest services. Price is still $25/pp plus luggage fee and only certain airlines and flight times were eligible. I have a copy of the form if anyone needs more details. One thing to note is that Terminal 26 at Port Everglades does not support mobile passport, so clearing US CBP took about ~30 minutes and we were one of the earliest groups to disembark. I think from leaving our stateroom to being curbside at the FLL airport was less than 1 hour though. I hope the above was helpful. I saved the daily When & Wheres and have all the MDR dinner menus saved as either pics or PDFs and I'll try to get the menus uploaded over the next week or so. We had a great cruise, met some fun people (especially at trivia, shout out to afreudgirl and her traveling companions), and we are looking forward to sailing on Holland America Line again!
  13. A busy Sunday in Port Everglades with seven cruise ships in port. Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (starboard to) from 0530-1700. She will be doing a 7-day Eastern Caribbean cruise. Nassau, Bahamas (13 Jan 0800-1600); San Juan, Puerto Rico (15 Jan 1300-2300); St Thomas, US Virgin Islands (16 Jan 0800-1700); Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (18 Jan 0800-1500); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (19 Jan a0700) Koningsdam will be at pier 21 (starboard to) from 0545-1600. She is heading out on a 10-day Southern Caribbean Seafarer cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (13 Jan 0800-1500); Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos (14 Jan 1100-1800); Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (15 Jan 0800-1800); Kralendijk, Bonaire (17 Jan 0800-1800); Willemstad, Curacao (18 Jan 0700-2300); Oranjestad, Aruba (19 Jan 0700-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (22 Jan a0700) Also in port are Adventure OTS at pier 29 from 0430-1730, Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0515-1630, Carnival Magic at pier 4 from 0400-1600, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, and Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0500-1600. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. For the addicts: Nieuw Statendam will be in Nassau on Monday, 13 January from 0800-1600. https://www.portnassauwebcam.com/. Veendam will be in Key West on Tuesday, 14 January from 0800-1700. https://www.keywestharborwebcam.com/ Next up: Eurodam and Veendam on Wednesday, 15 January.
  14. Just booked a bump out room on deck 7. Anyone have information on those rooms? Pictures? I can’t find any, but it is supposed to be a bigger room and balcony.
  15. *** NOTE*** I am posting this on Friday night and by Sunday some of the times and even piers may change. It is another full house in Port Everglades with eight cruise ships. Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (starboard to) from 0530-1700. She will be heading out on a 7-day Tropical Caribbean cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (06 Jan 0800-1700); Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos (08 Jan 0800-1700); Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (09 Jan 0800-1700); Key West, Florida (11 Jan 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (12 Jan a0700) Volendam will be at pier 4 (unusual) from 0430-1600. Volendam is taking over for Prinsendam for the 77-day Grand South America and Antarctica cruise. I would be surprised if she leaves at 1600 (the 2019 one did not leave until after 1900). Sorry for the bad picture, it was the only one I could find. George Town, Grand Cayman (07 Jan 0800-1700); Panama Canal (Cruising Canal) (10 Jan 0500-0500); Panama City, Panama (10 Jan 2000(+1)1800); Manta, Ecuador (13 Jan 0500-2000); Salaverry (Trujillo), Peru (15 Jan 0300-1800); Callao (Lima), Peru (16 Jan 1100(+1)1800); Pisco, Peru (18 Jan 0800-1700); Coquimbo (La Serena), Chile (21 Jan 0800-1700); San Antonio, Chile (22 Jan 0800-1700); Isla Robinson Crusoe, Chile (24 Jan 0800-1700); Puerto Montt, Chile (26 Jan 0800-1700); Castro, Chiloe Island (27 Jan 0800-1700); Puerto Chacabuco, Chile (28 Jan 0800-1700); Punta Arenas, Chile (31 Jan 0700-1900); Cape Horn, Chile (01 Feb); Ushuaia, Argentina (02 Feb 0600-2000); Port Stanley, Falkland Islands (09 Feb 0800-1700); Puerto Madryn, Argentina (11 Feb 0800-1700); Punta Del Este, Uruguay (13 Feb 1000-1800); Montevideo, Uruguay (14 Feb 0800-1800); Buenos Aires, Argentina (15 Feb 0800(+1)1700); Santos (Sao Paulo), Brazil (19 Feb 0800-2300); Ilhabela, Brazil (20 Feb 0800-1700); Buzios, Brazil (21 Feb 0800-1700); Rio De Janeiro, Brazil (22 Feb 0700(+1)2300); Ilheus, Brazil (25 Feb 1100-1900); Salvador De Bahia, Brazil (26 Feb 0800-1700); Recife, Brazil (28 Feb 0800-1700); Fortaleza, Brazil (01 Mar 0700-1400); Belem, Brazil (03 Mar 0800-1800); Santarem, Brazil (06 Mar 0800-1800); Boca da Valeria, Brazil (07 Mar 0800-1400); Manaus, Brazil (08 Mar 1100(+1)1700); Parintins, Brazil (10 Mar 0800-1400); Santarem, Brazil (11 Mar 0800-1400); Iles Du Salut, French Guiana (14 Mar 0800-1700); Bridgetown, Barbados (16 Mar 0800-1800); St Vincent, St Vincent and the Grenadines (17 Mar 0800-1700); Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (19 Mar 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (22 Mar a0700) Also in port are Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0515-1630, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, Costa Luminosa at pier 19 from 0545-2300, Majesty OTS at pier 21 from 0615-1600, Pacific Princess (who is leaving on her 111-day World Voyage) at pier 29 from 0415-1600 (likely later than this), and Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0500-1600. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. For the addicts : Eurodam will be in Aruba on Tuesday, 7 January. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Veendam on Wednesday, 8 January.
  16. We leave on Jan 12 on the Nieuw Statendam. We had a VE Verandah guarantee and were given a VQ Spa Verandah 10021. This appears to be an upgrade although I'm not sure these cabins are that much better. We normally prefer cabins toward the back of the ship. Curious for those that have had one of these cabins. Did you like it? What did you like about it? Was it really windy on the verandah while at sea? Is the spa showerhead any better than the regular ones? We have been on the Koningsdam and loved the shower in a regular Verandah cabin. Is there a tub or an enclosed glass shower? Thanks everyone!
  17. Has anyone stayed in this cabin? Booked it on my next cruise to the Baltic in May and wondering if the noise will bother us?
  18. Sunday brings our last HAL sail-away of 2019. Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (starboard to) from 0530-1700. She is doing a 7-day Eastern Caribbean Holiday cruise. Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (31 Dec 1000-1800); San Juan, Puerto Rico (01 Jan 1100-2300); St Thomas, US Virgin Islands (02 Jan 0800-1700); Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (04 Jan 0800-1500); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (05 Jan a0700) It is another busy day in port with Adventure OTS at pier 29 from 0430-1730, Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0515-1630, Carnival Magic at pier 4 from 0400-1600, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0600-1530, Costa Luminosa at pier 19 from 0445-2300, and Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0500-1600. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/ and https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/. Also, Veendam will be in Nassau from 0800-1400.http:// https://www.portnassauwebcam.com/ For the Addicts: Volendam will be in Aruba from 0800-2000 on Tuesday, 31 December. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Koningsdam on Thursday, 2 January.
  19. What did HAL learn from the Koningsdam that they have changed on the Nieuw Statendam?
  20. The musical program attracted me to HAL but I have seen several reviews of how loud it is... I stayed on a lower deck on our last cruise and liked it (quiet, didn’t get motion sickness/very stable, and disembarkation on shore days was super easy as it was one level down) but the configuration of NS is very different. I was at first excited to see that the Plaza Level and entertainment options (and MDR) are just one level up but now I am afraid of the noise. Would love opinions/thoughts from those who have cruised on NS, esp those who stayed on Main Deck. It is the only remaining question I have before confirming the trip. Thanks!!!
  21. Everyone is "getting out of Dodge" for the holidays - there are eight ships in port! For those of you who are up very early, there will be non-stop sail-ins for about two hours. Koningsdam will be at pier 21 (starboard to) from 0530-1700. She is doing an 11-day Southern Caribbean Wayfarer Holiday cruise. Philipsburg, St. Maarten (25 Dec 0800-1700); Fort de France, Martinique (26 Dec 0800-1700); Bridgetown, Barbados (27 Dec 0800-1700); St Vincent, St Vincent and the Grenadines (28 Dec 0800-1700); Roseau, Dominica (29 Dec 0800-1600); St Thomas, US Virgin Islands (30 Dec 0800-1700); Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (01 Jan 0800-1500); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (02 Jan a0700) Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 26 (port to) from 0515-1700. She is headed out on a 7-day Southern Caribbean Holiday cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (23 Dec 0800-1500); Oranjestad, Aruba (25 Dec 1300-2300); Willemstad, Curacao (26 Dec 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (29 Dec a0700) Also in port are Allure OTS at pier 18 from 0500-1630, Celebrity Edge at pier 25 from 0545-1530, Celebrity Silhouette at pier 29 from 0430-1600, Costa Luminosa at pier 19 from 0415-2300, Pacific Princess at pier 4 from 0345-1600, and Regal Princess at pier 2 from 0445-1600. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/ and https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/. Also, Nieuw Amsterdam will be in Nassau from 0800-1700. https://www.portnassauwebcam.com/ For the Addicts: Lots of webcam activity - On 24 December Volendam (0800-1700) and Zuiderdam (0800-1500) along with four other ships (!) will be in St. Maarten. https://www.portstmaartenwebcam.com/ On 25 December Koningsdam will be in St.Maarten from 0800-1700 https://www.portstmaartenwebcam.com/ and Nieuw Statendam will be in Aruba from 1300-2300 https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ On 26 December Rotterdam will be in Aruba from 0800-1800. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Zuiderdam on 27 December. Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas to you all!
  22. All, we had a fantastic Thanksgiving cruise on the Nieuw Statendam, and I meant to write a nice little trip report as soon as we got home, but sickness, school, and parenting a five year old got in the way— please excuse my tardiness and please take this little review at its value! Overall we had a fabulous trip! I’ve attempted a photo upload— just a few pictures; I hope it works as planned. We flew to FLL a day early, and spent the night in Dania Beach at the Hilton Home2Suites. We like Home2 as a nice alternative to other Hilton properties— room layout is good for family travel, large rooms, nice shower in the bathroom, and free breakfast. There is a complimentary airport shuttle between 5am and midnight, and a shuttle to Port Everglades is available, $20 per person round trip from hotel-PE-airport. Day1– Our son was bouncing off the walls ready to get on the ship! He was so excited to go back to Club HAL, and enjoy HAL pizza... easy shuttle ride to the ship, and we arrived at the terminal around noon. Our boarding docs gave us an arrival time of 1:30, but there was no way we could entertain ourselves or the kid until then— so we arrived early, waited in line for 25 minutes then boarded! As stated so frequently here, NS is really beautiful. Modern design, muted colors with little pops of brighter colors made for a really Impressive design scheme, in my opinion. Our room, deck five, cabin 5046, even though it was right by the stairwell/elevator lobby, was very quiet. I felt like it was a little small. The bathroom was really nice. We had early fixed dining (5pm!) which worked out great, because By the time we finished eating each night, our son was ready to attend Club HAL, which opened each evening at 7. Day2– Half Moon Cay is always gorgeous! One of our favorite places. We walked down the beach past the pirate ship bar and found some loungers in the shade. We just enjoyed a lazy beach day. Glorious! Day3– At sea. Really fun day on board— I enjoyed geeking out at the Origins film presented by the cruise director, which told the history of HAL. I thought it was interesting and informative. My son joined me at flower arranging, and then the highlight of his cruise was at lunch, when the bartender made him his first Shirley Temple! Club HAL sea day hours were 9-11:30am, then 1-4pm, and then 7-11pm. Dinner tonight was a Gala night, and it was interesting— our first experience observing folks being turned away for improper dress on the MDR (in this case, those on shorts were asked to change clothes). We enjoyed music each night in the Music Walk- this is really fabulous and the quality of the performances is outstanding. Day4– Turks and Caicos. For us, another beach day. We walked off the ship and found surf side loungers— we went further down the beach so we ended up paying $20, which was totally fine. We like Grand Turk as the beach is so pretty— this was our second time here, and the water is so pretty! Day5– In Amber Cove, we did an independent excursion through Marysol Tours— horseback riding and beach day. It was so much fun. Our son loved it, and our guide was wonderful with him. Afterward we shopped for a little in the port area. I thought it was a really nice port— we’ve been to Punta Cana before, and think the DR is really a gorgeous country, and Amber Cove definitely is surrounded by some beautiful scenery! Today was Thanksgiving Day, and the menu was lovely— ham, turkey, beef— best part is that I didn’t have to cook or clean, and my son got to eat another pizza, lol! Day6– Sea day. Tonight we ate at Tamarind. We love Tamarind— definitely our favorite restaurant at sea. Our sweet server brought our son a pizza! I got to enjoy a spa day— Swedish massage and mani/pedi. Very nice facilities. Day 7– Key West was amazing. We have been before but in our opinion, cruising into Key West was more fun than driving! We went through passport control on the ship here— a little bit of a nightmare lining everyone up, but generally it was okay, and even nicer once we realized there’d be no customs in FLL upon arrival! We walked on our own in Key West— super easy for us, visiting the Truman White House, the Hemingway House, Southernmost point, followed by lunch at El Siboney Cuban restaurant, and then a walk up Duval St to Mallory Square. My husband had to watch the Iron Bowl on the iPad so getting back to homebase at kickoff was critical. Thankfully Auburn won... We flew home a day after our cruise ended, choosing to visit my husband’s grandmother in Naples. In Summary— Another wonderful HAL cruise. We enjoy the family atmosphere, and son enjoys Club HAL. We are paying careful attention to the proposed changes to Club/High Score. Service was outstanding— our cabin attendants and MDR attendants anticipated our desires and went above and beyond to cater to our little one. We loved the World Stage— really technologically impressive! I wish the standard verandah cabins were larger and the first fixed dining seating was just 30 minutes later. I loved that the Lido Pool actually had a staircase rather than just ladders. In hindsight I would’ve booked an aft cabin rather than a forward cabin, my mistake. Thanks for reading along!
  23. Would love some information about how you found Club HAL on the Nieuw Statendam. Our grandkids loved it on the New Amsterdam, but it looks like it's a lot smaller on the NS. Kids will be 8, 14, 16 at the time of sailing. I know the older ones can do what they want, but the younger one will need some HAL activity perhaps.
  24. Looking at these aft cabins on the NS and they are all available for a cruise...is there something wrong with them? Would love comments from anyone who has been in them. We're looking at taking our family (11) on a Caribbean cruise next year...these "sound nice". but concerned so many are available.
  25. Koningsdam will be at pier 26 (port to) from 0545-1700. She will be leaving for a 7-day Eastern Caribbean cruise. Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos (17 Dec 0800-1500); San Juan, Puerto Rico (18 Dec 1300-2300); St Thomas, US Virgin Islands (19 Dec 0800-1700); Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (21 Dec 0800-1500); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (22 Dec a0700) Nieuw Statendam will be at pier 19 (starboard to) from 0400-1700. She is doing a 7-day Tropical Caribbean cruise. Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (16 Dec 0800-1700); Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos (18 Dec 0800-1700); Amber Cove, Dominican Republic (19 Dec 0800-1700); Key West, Florida (21 Dec 0800-1700); Fort Lauderdale, Florida (22 Dec a0700) Also in port are Adventure OTS at pier 29 from 0430-1730, Allure OTS will be at pier 18 from 0515-1630, Carnival Magic will be at pier 4 from 0445-1600, Celebrity Edge will be at pier 25 from 0600-1530, and Regal Princess will be at pier 2 from 0530-1600. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/ and https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/. Also, Zuiderdam will be in Aruba from 0800-2300. https://www.portarubawebcam.com/ Next up: Veendam on Wednesday, 18 December.
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