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Found 391 results

  1. Hi. is there music playing on the lido deck either a band or DJ ?
  2. We previously sailed on the Amsterdam and spent many evenings in the Crow's Nest Bar. We booked on the Nieuw Amsterdam for Thanksgiving, so I was browsing photos of the ship. Did they turn the Crow's Nest into the Explorations Cafe? Is there no longer a bar up there???
  3. Hi, does anyone know if the tables are the same in the dining room as Koningsdam? I really want to make sure we have a window this time. We didn't have one in Norway and it was really disappointing! I looked on halfacts, they only had Koningsdam. Thanks for any info.
  4. Does anyone know if there are charging USB ports in the nightstands on the Nieuw Amsterdam? I thought I saw this somewhere but not I'm having a hard time using the search function within the boards. Thanks!
  5. My wife and I sailed on the August 31 Nieuw Amsterdam Alaska cruise, roundtrip from Vancouver with visits to Tracy Arm Inlet/Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, and Ketchikan. I'm not writing a full review, but I wanted to share some notes and impressions from the cruise. This was not our first Alaska cruise. My wife and I took one on Princess in 2002, and I did two previous Alaska cruises in the 90's, one on Celebrity and the other on RCCL. I've been on many cruises but only once on HAL, and that was almost 25 years ago. It was the first time on HAL for my wife. EMBARKATION We took a taxi to Canada Place from our hotel, arriving around 11:00. The taxi waited in a long line in the parking garage to drop us off -- we should have left the taxi outside and walked. Embarkation was very quick and organized, with lots of staff directing people. We were able to board and go to our stateroom immediately after checking in and clearing Customs, so we were in our room before noon. The MDR was open for lunch from 12:00-1:30, so we ate there. Our luggage was delivered to our cabin around 2:00. CABIN We were in an aft-facing verandah cabin, #5191. The cabin was nice, with plenty of storage, a decent size bathroom with a tub/shower and handheld showerhead. Some of the space for hanging items was short, but I discovered you could fold the shelves up to make more space. Our cabin steward Jalu ("Lu") was very good. The balcony had two chairs with separate foot rests and a small table. The TV didn't appear to work correctly at first, but that's because you have to watch the entire safety presentation (just a few minutes) before you can access the menu. There was a limited selection of live TV, but we only watched the news once in a while to keep tabs on Hurricane Dorian (we live in FL). DINING Prior to the cruise, I made reservations in three of the specialty restaurants, Canaletto (first night), Pinnacle Grill (mid week), and Tamarind (last night). Once on board, we decided to try Tamarind on the second night. We had our other dinners and lunches in the MDR. Pinnacle and Tamarind were very good (Tamarind was better the first time), Canaletto was good but not great, and the MDR was pretty good. On Gala Nights people were not as dressed up as I've seen on other cruises. We had breakfast delivered to room each morning (including the last morning, which most cruise lines don't do). There's a limited selection of hot and cold items. A couple of mornings the order wasn't quite right, and a couple of times breakfast came either early or late, but overall it was fine. As with every other cruise line I've been on, there's an order tag you can hang outside your door before you go to bed. ENTERTAINMENT By far the best entertainment was the band at B.B. King's Blues Club, and we enjoyed that almost every night. We sat at the bar and got to know the bartenders (Jeffrey, Alan, and Luis). One night we listened to the dual piano players. They were good, and drew big crowds, but they didn't really play off each other like we've seen at other dueling piano shows. We were planning to listen to them a second time, but there were no seats available so went to B.B. King's instead. The only Mainstage shows we saw were the illusionist Leon Etienne and comedian Lamont Ferguson (two different shows). They were both good (the illusionist was better). My wife "volunteered" at Leon's show. They did a combined show the last night but we didn't go. Unlike some other ships we've been on, you didn't really have to get to the theater too early -- there were plenty of open seats up front even when the shows started. Bar service in the theater was more limited than what we've experienced elsewhere, and non-existent once the show started. The Orange Party was held at B.B. King's one night. Most people did not wear orange. The only differences between that night and other nights at the club were that the cruise director and some other crew members were dancing, the bartenders were wearing orange hats, and they were serving snacks. INTERNET AND WIFI I purchased the Premium Internet package before the cruise, which you can use on multiple devices but only one at a time. The service was pretty slow and unreliable, definitely not worth the money. I also signed up for AT&T's 30-day Cruise Plan, which gave me 50 minutes of voice and unlimited text on the ship's cellular (no data). They have a more expensive plan that provides some data and unlimited voice. One of the reasons I did this is because we spent a few days in Vancouver before the cruise, and I could use the Cruise Plan there (Canada is not included in my home wireless area). The HAL Navigator mobile app was useful. You don't need to buy an internet plan to connect to the ship's WiFi, and you can view the schedule of events, restaurant menus. and make dinner reservations (for specialty restaurants). You can also send messages other people who have the app (I didn't try that). If you do buy an internet plan, you can use the app to connect. I use NordVPN whenever I'm on a public WiFi network, and I limited success getting it to work with the ship's internet. The Navigator app doesn't work correctly when you're connected to a VPN. SHORE EXCURSIONS AND PORTS The only shore excursion I purchased from HAL (before the cruise) was the Tracy Arm Inlet tour. The ship passes through Tracy Arm Inlet on the way to Juneau, so you board the tour boat directly from the ship in the morning, and then board the ship directly from the tour boat that afternoon in Juneau. Overall we enjoyed the tour and are glad we did it, though it was expensive. We were supposed to meet at 8:15 in the theater and leave at 8:30 -- we didn't actually start leaving the ship until 9:15 (we could have used the extra sleep :-). We did two other excursions with local operations in Skagway and Juneau. Skagway and Juneau have become incredibly touristy since our last visit, with many blocks of nothing but jewelry stores and other typical tourist traps. Ketchikan had a bit more character, and the tourism was more integrated and not as in your face as the other ports. Glacier Bay was awesome. We spent quite a bit of time there, and they brought a naturalist on board to narrate. DISEMBARKATION We chose one of the early disembarkation groups (but not self-disembarkation) that was supposed to disembark around 8:30. Our flight from Vancouver was at around 12:30. We heard our group called a few minutes after 8:00, but we weren't quite ready to leave. When we arrived at the disembarkation point on the ship at around 8:20, we were told we were mistaken, and our group hadn't been called yet (other passengers verified that they also heard our group being called). Once they called our group (again), we got off the ship, claimed our bags, and cleared customs pretty quickly. There was no wait for taxi, and the ride to the airport was uneventful. The lines at the airport were short, and we were at our gate an hour or less after we disembarked. There was only one other ship disembarking, the Golden Princess, so that's probably why it went quickly. CONCLUSION We were happy overall with HAL and the cruise, and we definitely try HAL again. We did both get sick (colds or flu) a few days into the cruise, but this didn't appear to be a widespread problem, and we were still able to enjoy our trip.
  6. I understand that this is a "pop up" experience. But, where does it pop up? For those who have done this (and I know this is very subjective), is it work the $49 charge?
  7. I've read some posts on Cruise Critic asking about vegan and vegetarian options on cruise ships. I've sailed on several cruises following a vegan diet, and aside from an entirely vegan cruise, HAL has a fabulous vegan menu! There are also so many vegan options all over the ship, whether it's naturally plant-based or you just need to remove a couple of ingredients here or there. I've written all about everything that I ate for my 7 days on Nieuw Statendam at my blog here: https://justinpluslauren.com/holland-america-vegan-guide/ I'll post the images of the vegan/vegetarian/gluten-free menu here that you can request in the main dining room. Let me know if you have any questions!
  8. We were on the Rotterdam in April and there was containers of lemonade available all day long that you could help yourself to. Can anyone confirm if that's the case on the Nieuw Statendam or if lemonade is only available during set meal times?
  9. This is the last full week of ships in Juneau although there will be no HAL ship on Wednesday. Eurodam will be at the AS dock from 1300-2300 and Nieuw Amsterdam at the CT dock from 1300-2200. Also in port is Ruby Princess at the FKL dock from 1100-2215. There is a 100% chance of rain with a high of 55F/13C and a low of 43F/6C. Sunrise is at 6:29 am and sunset at 7:15 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Oosterdam and Noordam on Tuesday.
  10. Cruise December 2019 (Holiday/Christmas). Family of 6 - adults. This will be our 5th cruise w/ HAL, our first Holiday. To save some money we are considering flying "red eye" into FLL. We would land at 6:00 a.m. How early can we board ship? Should we go ahead and get hotel to get few hours sleep? Thanks in advance for guidance.
  11. Where does the New Statendam dock in Key West?
  12. We booked this cruise on February 15th and it sailed on the the 24th . Unfortunately , all of the Neptune Suites were sold out but they did have our favorite aft view in a VS verandah # 5200 . This was our 10th aft view verandah and it turned out to be , by far , the smallest . We thought that we would try the Club Orange to receive some of the NS type of perks . After clearing security we went to the express check in where the camera wasn't working . They used our Zaandam photos from December . After dropping our bags we headed to the MDR for lunch . The elevators were quite warm and with all the lights and reflective surfaces reminded me of the old toy Easy Bake Oven . The Lobster Shack looked good so we ordered it for the next day at Half Moon Cay Lunch at a table for 2 with a view . The service and the food was very good in the MDR and it was nice and quite .
  13. Previously traveled on Celebrity where we could take large cup to bars and get free fountain soda to drink in stateroom. Does HAL offer the same service?
  14. Does the Lido on the Nieuw Statendam have an al fresco dining area?
  15. Hi everyone. Have booked Nieuw Statendam for December 2020 in Cabin 8193 Part of the reason for the location is both my wife and I really enjoy the more aft cabins. We love the motion of the ship and we never sleep so well as when we are being rocked to sleep 🙂 I'm just curious to hear any comments for those who might have sailed in the cabin and possible pictures. Cheers! Warren and Yvonne
  16. Are the movies shown on the big poolside screen also available on your stateroom TV?
  17. Cruise December 2019 Holiday. Family of 6. Fifth time on HAL, 1st Holiday trip. Does anyone know if HAL has a "special" night planned in the dining room for Christmas? We usually book one or two nights of our trip at one of the specialty restaurants while on board. Not sure how we should plan for the holiday this trip. Thanks much to all.
  18. Hereby my review of our 8-day cruise to Norway with Holland America's Nieuw Statendam. With lots of help from Cruise Critic members and by reading lots of post we decided a few months ago to go for a cruise to Norway, the 8 days (7 nights) Vikings Saga. Because it was our first cruise we decided to start and end in Amsterdam (capital of our home country) and just for a week to see cruising was something for us. If you have any question after reading this review please let me know! I have posted a selection of photos but if you want to see something, you’re missing please let me know. I also brought a lot of documentation from the ship like When and Where. Please like my post! If you liked it of course... Booking the cruise: We booked directly with HAL in the Netherlands. There was an offer with free Signature beverage package and 10% discount on excursion booked before a certain date. Al the Dutch travel agency who also offered this same trip (with the same benefits) were almost $ 150, - more expensive than HAL so for us the best deal was to book directly with HAL… Day 1: Embarkation day! Today, Sunday the 18th of August 2019 we finally started our cruise on the Statendam! We arrived early by train in Amsterdam Central station. We walked from the station to the terminal (PTA Amsterdam) in 15 minutes. Dropped of the baggage at the designated drop-off point. We entered the cue for checking in and our first thought was that the cue was long… But there where I think 12 or more desks where they checked in passengers. It was a 5-minute wait. After getting the first information about activities onboard (When and Where) and our personal spending card/room key we walked to the security check and after that entered to a waiting room where we received a card with a group number, in our case number 13. When we found a seat in the crowded waiting room, they called out group 10 and after I think 5 minutes our group was called to enter the ship! In the gangway they scanned our card an told us the rooms where ready. First, we went to our room to check it out and that explored the ship! At 0430PM we went to the Lido deck where we drank champagne and sail away from Amsterdam! Rest of the evening we walked on the outside deck to see the sail away trough the channel to the locks of Ijmuiden. We had dinner in the MDR. Day 2: At sea Like the first day we explored the ship even more. Due the fact it was a sea day we just relaxed a lot by the swimming pool, and I made some recordings with my GoPro around the ship. Nice spot we sit this day was in the Exploration café on deck 12. You need to be on time, most people stay here for a few hours, especially on the nice seats by the windows. Breakfast and Lunch in the Lido, diner in the MDR. Day 3: Fläm In Fläm we went out of bet early 05:30AM to go to the bow they opened for the scenic cruising in the Sognefjord and the last part to Fläm in the Aurlandsfjord. It’s was very nice to stand here and watch the beautiful Norwegian nature! 0700AM we docked in Fläm and went for breakfast to the Lido. In Fläm we did a hike to the Brekkefossen waterfall. It was hike from the boot to the starting point of the trail to the waterfall and back down, a little further into the valley, back to Fläm port and walk around the port a 14km hike for 4 hours. The hike is very nice but the trail from the rood up to the waterfall is with bad weather very slippery… For lunch (Lido) we went back to the ship and relaxed the rest of the day. Dinner in the Lido. Day 4: Stavanger Stavanger was a nice town to walk around, we first went to the street with the wooden houses (Gamle/Old Stavanger) that was across the street where the ship was docked. After that we walked to the Dom Church and the Breiavatnet lake behind the church. 5 hours walk, 14KM. For lunch we went back to the ship and grabbed a pizza at New York Deli! Great Pizza! Dinner in the MDR. Day 5: Kristiansand A lot of rain this day, we walked from the cruise terminal to the fish market and after that to the Dom Church of Kristiansand. We grabbed a cup of coffee and a donut a walked around the city to do some shopping. Due the bad weather my wife we went back to the ship to put on dry clothing and I walked around the Odderøya headland, beautiful nature reserve and in the meantime the weather had also improved so I could make some images with my GoPro. Walked for 4 hours,10KM. After I went back to the ship and put on dry clothing as well, we went for lunch to the Dive-In. Great burgers with chips!! Kristiansand is a very nice city but this day the weather wat to bad to explore everything we wanted to do. Day 6: Oslo Oslo! Nice weather and our last stop in Norway with this beautifully cruise! Oslo is a nice city with a beautifully harbor with new buildings in old style. Lots of old buildings in the city. They had on different places in the city live music. At the royal palace the members of the government arrived, don’t know them but it was fun to see, lots of armed guards and police. Again, we did some shopping and went to the Akershus fort. The ship was in front of the fort so had a nice opportunity to make some nice pictures of the ship. We went back on the ship and put on swim clothing and had lunch at the Lido outside pool. Walked in Oslo for 5 hours, 12KM. After lunch we went in the Jacuzzi and swimming pool and enjoyed the sunshine! We went for a shower ant went back out to be on time to grab a chair on deck 10 aft for the sail out from Oslo. Great views! Dinner in the Lido. Day 7: At sea Last full day on the Nieuw Statendam… I miss it already…. Went out early to make some shots with camera and GoPro without people on the background. Breakfast we had in the Lido. This day I had a Behind the Scenes tour If you can grab a place in the behind the scenes tour, I really would recommend it! It was very nice to see what’s going on below the passenger decks. They don’t advertise with it on our cruise, but I asked on the first day on the ship and it was planned for the last seaday. I was the 3rd on the list and they needed a minimum of 8 persons, maximum was 12. The duration was almost 3,5 hours and we went to the following departments: bridge, incident room, world stage, walked through the corridors where the crew sleeps (couldn’t see in the rooms), laundry, tailor shop, crew mess, recycling center, engine control room, storage rooms for the food (LOTS OF FOOD!) and the galley. After that we went with our cruise director who guided the tour back up to the Billboard on board to grab a drink and receive a goody bag form hall. Like is said, if you would like to see what’s happening behind the scenes, I really recommend it! It’s in this case worth the $ 150, - Day 8: Disembarkation day….. About our disembarkation, first disembark time was 0700AM and later we got an email with the announcement it changed to 0530AM. But thank god we didn’t have to get out that early! The Nieuw Statendam docked VCK Waterland Terminal at about 0530 AM and 0700AM they started disembarking passengers in groups. On day 2 in our cruise we got an envelope with disembarkation information and a form that we needed to fill in. There were a few options to choose from like a transfer to the City of Amsterdam, Schiphol Airport and Train Station Sloterdijk. We choose the last option because we needed to get on the train to our hometown. We could choose from 3 timeframes, 07:45/08:00, 08:15/08:30 and 08:45/09:00 am. We chose for the last one, so we had enough time onboard to get breakfast and relax a bit before leaving the ship. Breakfast time for our disembarkation day where from 06:00 till 09:00am in the Lido and in the MDR from 06:30 till 08:00am. They announced the group we were in (Black 3) at 09:05 and we went to the gangway and disembarked the ship for the last time…… In the hall on the dock our luggage was ready to pick up and we walked to the busses that drove us to the station. Everything was well organized by HAL! The Room: We had a Veranda room on deck 7, VE7186. What can I say? The room was small but big enough for a week for 2 persons and maybe for 2 adults and one minor. Not for 4 adults. The room is on the Shubert deck portside aft. It was a good choice in our case. We had no inconvenience from other guests or from the entertainment on board. The room has a good shower and in the shower is shampoo, conditioner and shower gel from Elemis. I liked it but as always tastes differ per person! On a next cruise I don’t take any shampoo or shower gel! My wife liked it to but preferred her own conditioner and shampoo for her curly hair. Our room steward was a nice guy cleaned our room twice a day and provided new towels. At night (second cleaning) he folded a nice towel animal every night. The safe is big enough for a 17inch laptop or tablet. The minibar is not included in the drink package! Read somewhere people asked the room steward to empty the minibar so that they can fill it themselves. What we did on some days is that we grabbed during the day beers or sprites and asked to not open it. We then put it in the minibar and drunk it when we wanted to sit on the balcony. But most of the time we where only on the room for sleeping. Food: The food was of a good quantity. We did not eat any paid restaurant like the Pinnacle Grill, we had the plans to do this but the food in the MDR was very good and Lido was for us extraordinarily good food for a buffet restaurant! Breakfast we did both in the Lido and MDR, if you want to start the day with not a lot noise and people around you go early to the MDR. I think a lot of food from the MDR and Lido are the same, especially in the morning. The only difference is that in the MDR they bring you the food! In the Lido at lunch time you can get Sushi at one of the stations, I asked if the also had it for dinner, but the answer was no…. Needed to come to the (paid) Shushi bar, I think it’s the same sushi so if you like sushi and don’t want the ambiance of a sushi bar take in as a lunch! Here a "few" food pics from MDR and Lido market. New York Deli Pizza we had an Pizza with tasted very good! Dive-in we eat both a burger with chips witch tasted very good! Tastes of course differ per person but people can’t say the food is bad!! And put on your plate what you can eat!!! If you don’t have enough go for a second or third time… I saw a lot of people putting their plates FULL and left the table with half a plate of food left….. During our behind the scenes tour they told us that food waste is a big problem which they try to prevent. I think some people are afraid that the food will run out soon? They walk around like headless chickens and if you are not careful, they will knock you over!! That’s what of the things I didn’t like of the Lido… (No, this is not me... 🙂 ) Drinks: For the drinks we had both the Signature Beverage Package. We booked before a certain date an got this for free. Would I book it on a future cruise? If I see what we drink in this week I say yes, but normally on a holiday we don’t drink so much if we did on this cruise… Must say that most of our holidays we book villa’s and need to drive to town to go for dinner or drinks and then I can’t drink! On a cruise ship its different... You can relax and grab a beer or cocktail and don’t need to think “can’t drink too much because I need to drive”. I made a calculation from our consumption (beer, wine, cocktails, sprites and special coffees) this one week cruise and we saved out $ 258,- dollars with the two of us with this SBP. We had an average of 5 alcoholic beverage per person per day and 6 non alcoholic drinks. For me most Mojito, beer water and Coca Cola, my wife drunk wine, prosecco, water, cappuccino, smoothies and some sprites. The terms of the SBP are not always that clear, in particular in the Netherlands. If you read the Dutch FAQ they say; A maximum of 15 beverages (alcoholic and nonalcoholic) per day total with a maximum of $ 11,- (08/2019). The USA website FAQ says: A maximum of 15 alcoholic beverages a day and unlimited nonalcoholic beverages a day with a maximum of $ 11, - (08/2019). I got in touch with the Dutch customer service and they confirmed to me that the USA FAQ statement about the SBP is correct. Entertainment: World Stage: This is a great stage! 270-degree LED screens make it very nice to watch shows. On our cruise week we went to Iris Kroes, a Dutch singer/songwriter that’s playing on a harp, very good music especially because she sang a song in a language of our province (Frisian). And we went to an illusionist from the UK, Adam Heppenstall. Adam had some nice card tricks! Phenomenal. The last night we went to a combined show of Iris and Adam. This week the Postmodern Jukebox also preformed in the World Stage, we only listened to them during the show of Iris. Great band. B.B. Kings Blues Club and Lincoln stage center: B.B. King and Lincoln stage center is a combined stage, in daytime there is classical music where we have not been. At night the All Stars band played in the B.B. Kings Blues Club, this was our favorite band and music genre. We have been here all the nights the All Stars where playing. Billboard On Board: Nice music with the two guys on the Piano. Some nights they play numbers on request. Bin here a few times before/after dinner or a show in the World Stage. In the Billboard you can grab some snacks from a small buffet by the room. I think it opens 0600PM discovered by accident… They had just some cooked shrimps and meatballs, some toasted bread strips, egg salad and tomato with mozzarella. Nice before dinner snack with your beer or cocktail. Rolling Stone Rock Room: Good rock band but not our type of music. Bin here a few times before/after dinner or a show in the World Stage. Excursion: Due the fact we like to walk around our self, explore things and we find the prices of what HAL asks for excursions to high, we didn’t book anything with HAL, except the behind the scenes tour what only is possible to book with HAL. Talked with another passenger, he told me the TA he booked with advised him to NOT book excursions with HAL. Like the Flam railway he booked himself on the Saturday before embarkation. Till that day the train tickets were al sold out but that Saturday there were a lot of tickets available again (cruise lines give unsold tickets back to train company). He just paid $ 100, - for 2 persons (last minute price!) instead of $ 360, - with HAL, price difference of 260%!! But for that price difference you will get a waffle and coffee! 😊 Conclusion: Would I recommend HAL as a first-time cruiser? Yes, certainly! Perhaps there are cheaper cruise lines for the same voyages that provide this same good service, but I do not have that experience yet and I will investigate in the coming period. As said, this was our first cruise and certainly not the last!
  19. Does the spa area have a thallosotherpy pool. If so how big is it? Is there an additional fee? Also is the spa included in the Neptune Suites and above? Any pictures would be helpful. Thanks
  20. Hi everyone, I've just booked the Nieuw Statendam for next February. It will be my first experience with HAL and I'm really looking forward to it! We've booked Cabin 8080 and I understand that the balcony is slightly bigger and angled because of the location. My question, for anyone who has been on it, is whether the balcony is entirely exposed or is there a combination of shade and sunshine? I usually book cabins on Caribe deck with Princess and those balconies provide both and are larger so I just wondered. Thanks in advance!
  21. Eurodam will be at the AS dock from 1300-2300 and Nieuw Amsterdam at the CT dock from 1300-2200. Also in port are Ruby Princess at the FKL dock from 1100-2215 and Solstice at the AJ dock from 1330-2200. The nice weather continues for a couple more days. Monday should be mostly sunny with a high of 70F/21C and a low of 47F/8C. Sunrise is at 6:14 am and sunset at 7:35 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Oosterdam on Tuesday.
  22. Day #1 - After a leisurely breakfast on the 23rd floor of the Pan Pacific, we rolled our luggage downstairs to the co-located Canada Place cruise ship terminal (the hotel has a dedicated "cruise ship level" elevator.) It was an easy hop, skip and a roll to the porters. From there, it was the actual cruise ship check-in which, with four ships in port, was a busy affair. After check-in, it was a bit of a "zig-zag livestock style" meander to get to shore-side security screening of individuals and carry-on luggage, and then another "hurry up and wait" for pre-clearance border screening, not by Canadian CBSA, but by officers of the United States Customs & Border Protection (CBP). You see, the United States federal government operates border pre-clearance facilities at a number of ports and airports in foreign territory. The process is intended to streamline border procedures, reduce congestion at U.S. ports of entry, and facilitate travel between the pre-clearance location and U.S. ports of entry unequipped to handle international travelers. After the obligatory welcome aboard pic by the ship's photographers (hey, no one is holding a knife to your throat to later purchase these pics!), we took one of Nieuw A's scenic elevators to Deck 7 and to our floating crib. Dropped off the carry-on's and headed for the Lido Marker for a salad and soup lunch. As we were leaving the abode, our luggage was delivered pronto; fast service by Nieuw A's Housekeeping Dept.! The 4:00 PM mandatory passenger emergency safety drill was one of the fastest and most efficient "mustard" drills that we've seen in twenty-seven years of cruising. Everyone showed up, got scanned in by the asst. boat commander and, at least as was the case with our boat, #10, paid attention/quit flapping their lips" as Captain Marco Carsjens and CD Rebecca read their safety and health schpiel via the ship's P/A system. We were dismissed exactly nineteen minutes after arriving, a fact which drew an applause from many of our fellow shipmates! Impressive feat! After unpacking, we did some jelling and vegging until it was time for dinner (we chose a casual one in the Lido and had Rigatoni). From there, it was a beeline for the last portion of the first set (8:30 PM) of the B.B. King's All-Star Band which, we found out, was standing room only, not one available seat in in the house! The band sounded spectacular as usual, with lead female singer Stephanie Bolton standing out. We stuck around for the entire second set (were able to locate two front row seats) and then finished up the night with the two Billboard Onboard pianists/vocalists Ivy and Jonathan. The main entertainment in the show lounge tonite was the movie "Avengers Endgame"starting at 8:30 PM Pic is the reason behind this ship's name prominently displayed opposite the Deck 2 port-side scenic elevators. New York City's nick name "The Big Apple" was first popularized in the 1920s by John J. FitzGerald, a sports writer for the New York Morning Telegraph.
  23. Thinking about booking a connecting cabin on deck 6, ss category and would like to know if anyone can tell me where the connecting door is in the cabin? Thanks for your replies.
  24. I have heard so much about the artwork throughout the Statendam. Is there some sort of self-guided tour available?
  25. Currently waitlisted for Early Dining (requested a table for 2) and I am not holding out much hope for getting early dining as booked this cruise very close to sailing date. Last time we sailed on the NA we had Anytime Dining and wanted a table for 2 and pretty much every night there was quite a long wait for seating. I guess we were “newbies” on HAL and didn’t know we should come at 5:50 😱 for dinner. So.... this time around I am trying to minimize the wait for dinner and was **considering** springing the $$ for Club Orange so that we could have dinner without a wait. Yes, I do understand that the NA does not have a dedicated restaurant like her larger sister ships and on the NA you just get a different menu for CO. But, I thought (????) if you purchased the CO deal, you would have preferred seating in the main dining room no matter what time you showed up such as between 6 and 7. When I spoke with my PCC he said that CO people have access to a concierge on board who would make these reservations for you. But I am not sure that is really the correct information that I have received. So, if there is anyone here on this board who has had experience on the NA with Club Orange, it would be great to hear from them regarding preferential or quick seating at the main dining room. Or their experience in general with Club Orange on the Niew Amsterdam. Of course, the other alternative for us is to just do specialty dining instead of CO. Anyway, just curious if there is someone who has experienced Club Orange on the Niew Amsterdam. Thanks in advance for any comments!
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