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  1. 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!
  2. 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.
  3. 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!
  4. today is Greenery Day and National Shrimp Scampi Day "I do not know myself, and God forbid that I should." -- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Meal suggestion for today - Layered aubergine & lentil bake At Sea Atlantic Nieuw Amsterdam destination Walvis Bay Namibia eta 5/11 Veendam destination Gibraltar eta 5/5 Volendam destination Walvis Bay Namibia 5/10 Stirrip Cay Grand Bahama Anchorage Nieuw Statendam Rotterdam Zuiderdam at Port Everglades for the day. Zaandam at Port Everglades for the day. At Sea Pacific Eurodam destination Manila eta 5/8 Noordam destination San Pedro eta 4/29 Westerdam destination Ensenada At San Pedro Maasdam Oosterdam Ensenada Koningsdam Jakarta, Indonesia Anchorage Amsterdam
  5. My wife and I have not cruised on any of the HAL ships. We are about ready to book a holiday trip for this year. My question is...all things being equal with the exception of cabin selection, should we do an inside cabin on the Nieuw Statendam or a balcony on the Nieuw Amsterdam? The cost is roughly the same for the inside and balcony. The Nieuw Staendam is a relatively new ship, and the the Nieuw Amsterdam was recently refurbished in 2018. My thinking is since there is limited daylight hours to enjoy the balcony, perhaps the inside cabin on the newer ship is the way to go. But I would appreciate any thoughts and suggestions from folks who have cruised on either or both ships. Thanks so much! Mick
  6. today is International Astronomy Day and Great Poetry Reading Day Campus sidewalks never exist as the straightest line between two points. -- M. M. Johnston Meal suggestion for today - Baked Ziti At Sea Atlantic Nieuw Amsterdam destination Walvis Bay Namibia eta 5/11 Veendam destination Gibraltar eta 5/5 Volendam destination Walvis Bay Namibia 5/10 Stirrip Cay Grand Bahama Anchorage Nieuw Statendam Rotterdam at Port Everglades for the day. Zuiderdam Zaandam at Port Everglades for the day. Coronado Island Noordam At Sea Pacific Eurodam destination Manila eta 5/8 Maasdam destintation Long Beach eta 4/28 Oosterdam destination San Pedro Belize eta4/28 Cabo San Lucas Westerdam Ensenada Koningsdam At Sea Indian Ocean Amsterdam destination Jakarta, Indonesia eta 4/28 All ships off Fort Lauderdale / Miami I have now been doing the Daily or the Fleet Report for a year. Thanks to all for the kind words and encouragement. Rich
  7. I just saw a report that the Carnival Magic was denied disembarkation at Grand Turk stop yesterday 3/6/20. They had several patients with Flu-like symptoms but no CDC of WHO criteria for COVID-19 testing. They additionally state the Veendam was not allowed to disembark on that same day. This has to be frustrating for the cruise industry because it is probably impossible for a ship at this time of year to NOT have at least a few passengers or crew develop flu-like symptoms. We are monitoring closely as we leave on the Nieuw Amsterdam March 14th with a stop on Grand Turk March 18th. With the new updated generous cancellation guidelines we have until Wednesday to make our final go/no go decision. As of now we are going but this could be the straw the sways us the other way. It will be interesting to see if they refuse upcoming stops there in the next few days: March 9th Carnival Horizon March 11th Nieuw Statendam & Carnival Magic March 12th Nieuw Amsterdam & Carnival Breeze March 14th Azura March 16th Carnival Magic & Carnival Sensation
  8. I'd also add that we had booked two more B2B's on Holland America's Nieuw Statendam in April that we were supposed to be on right after we got off Celebrity but because we were flying home on 3/15 I cancelled those on 3/12 too. HAL eventually gave us refunds instead of FCC even though their "policy" was similar to Celebrity's at the time we cancelled. HAL knows how to treat a customer. Celebrity could learn a thing or two. If we ever cruise again it will be on HAL.
  9. The Daily for Monday Apr 27, 2020 today is Marine Mammal Rescue Day A professor is one who talks in someone else's sleep. Meal suggestion for today - Baked marrow amatriciana At Sea Atlantic Nieuw Amsterdam destination Walvis Bay Namibia eta 5/11 Veendam destination Gibraltar eta 5/5 Volendam destination Gibraltar eta 5/5 Stirrip Cay Grand Bahama Anchorage Nieuw Statendam at Port Everglades for the day. Rotterdam Zuiderdam Zaandam Coronado Island Noordam At Sea Pacific Eurodam destination Manila eta 5/8 Maasdam destintation Long Beach(?) Oosterdam destination Long Beach eta 4/28 Cabo San Lucas Westerdam Ensenada Koningsdam At Sea Indian Ocean Amsterdam destination Jakarta, Indonesia eta 4/28
  10. Holland America is repatriating their crew to their home countries as I write this. Zaandam and Nieuw Statendam are on their way now to Europe to take back those crew members whose homes are in Europe. Both ships are due to arrive in Rotterdam on May 12th. Other HAL ships are taking crew back to Asia, not sure which ones.
  11. What did HAL learn from the Koningsdam that they have changed on the Nieuw Statendam?
  12. According to Marine Traffic, Nieuw Statendam is on her way from Port Everglades due to arrive in The Netherlands 12 May. That's a long way to go if HAL knows the cruises in Europe won't be happening. We are booked on a cruise out of Amsterdam to Norway departing 5 July and do not want to be on board when/if she sails. So, like others, we are waiting (and hoping) for the 'no cruise ban' to be extended. Bad enough for those who have cancelled and then have to wait several months for a refund, but if necessary we'll take the hit of loss of all money rather than be cooped up with thousands of others in a big bug incubator. It's unthinkable.
  13. I really like this itinerary, but I already have 2 trips planned for 2021 (although I'm not sure about Africa in February). This is a new ship that can currently sail the heritage fjords. Are there any updated standards coming in the next few years that would make the Nieuw Statendam unable to sail the heritage fjords, and when would that happen?
  14. We've only sailed HAL once, last year on the Nieuw Statendam, and they've been sending offesr for free cruises ever since, but my wife and I really like how we're treated on Princess. So much so, that we're turning down the 20% bonus and a free cruise. Call me stupid, but why spend a week or two on a ship where you're not happy with everything.
  15. today is Hug a Friend Day and Audubon Day It's easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them. Meal suggestion for today - Egg & veggie pittas At Sea Atlantic Nieuw Amsterdam destination Durban SA eta 5/14 Veendam destination St Thomas USVI eta 4/26 Volendam destination Bridgetown Barbados eta 4/27 Stirrip Cay Grand Bahama Anchorage Nieuw Statendam Rotterdam Zuiderdam Zaandam Coronado Island Noordam At Sea Pacific Eurodam destination Manila eta 5/8 Koningsdam destination Ensenada eta 4/27 Maasdam destintation Long Beach(?) Oosterdam destination Long Beach eta 4/28 Westerdam destination Cabo San Lucas eta 4/24 At Sea Indian Ocean Amsterdam destination Jakarta, Indonesia eta 4/28
  16. 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!
  17. *** 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.
  18. Doone, my sister and I have a 4-day cruise on the Nieuw Statendam booked for Jan. 27, 2021. I'm looking forward to it, but if it's cancelled, no big deal. I have a $50 deposit down for the both of us, so not a lot invested in it as of today. No flights booked, only a hotel reservation. I booked the cruise last November, so even if they bump passengers to sail below capacity, we should be OK.
  19. today is Anzac Day and National Day of Puppetry In an organization, each person rises to the level of his own incompetency -- The Peter Principle Meal suggestion for today - Prawn, avocado & soya bean salad At Sea Atlantic Nieuw Amsterdam destination Durban SA eta 5/14 Veendam destination St Thomas USVI eta 4/26 Volendam destination Bridgetown Barbados eta 4/27 Zaandam destination Nassau eta 4/26 Stirrip Cay Grand Bahama Anchorage Nieuw Statendam Rotterdam Zuiderdam Coronado Island Noordam At Sea Pacific Eurodam destination Manila eta 5/8 Koningsdam destination Ensenada eta 4/27 Maasdam destintation Long Beach(?) Oosterdam destination Long Beach eta 4/28 Westerdam destination Cabo San Lucas eta 4/24 Port Klang Amsterdam
  20. 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!
  21. today is Arbor Day and Pig in a Blanket Day "The climate of Bombay is such that its inhabitants have to live elsewhere." Meal suggestion for today - Chicken & sweet potato curry At Sea Atlantic Nieuw Amsterdam destination Durban SA eta 5/14 Veendam destination St Thomas USVI eta 4/26 Volendam destination Bridgetown Barbados eta 4/24 Stirrip Cay Grand Bahama Anchorage Nieuw Statendam Rotterdam Zaandam Zuiderdam Cabo San Lucas Maasdam Coronado Island Noordam At Sea Pacific Eurodam destination Manila eta 5/8 Koningsdam destination Puerto Vallarta eta 4/25 Oosterdam destination Long Beach eta 4/28 Westerdam destination Cabo San Lucas eta 4/24 Indian Ocean Amsterdam awaiting permission - Malaysia
  22. Life happens and we had to cancel plans for an October P&O Ventura Cruise. Things have stabilized and we were able to book this last minute cruise of 2 weeks on Nieuw Statendam. This is our First Holland America cruise and from what we’ve experienced in the first week it won’t be our last. We have really enjoyed the NS. Last week we visited Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas and Half Moon Cay. This week it will be Half Moon Cay again, then Falmouth Jamaica, Georgetown Grand Cayman and Cozumel Mexico. Boarding last week was smooth (brief hiccup I explain below) I believe we were onboard around 11:30AM. We knew when had Priority Boarding with Club Orange but had to explain to the person allowing guests in the Priority line that we were allowed to be in that line. The sign said Club Orange and our Boarding Passes said Priority, she finally allowed us to check in. Quick checkin and we were escorted to where the Club Orange guests wait for boarding, they had water/coffee and sweet treats available for us. Once onboard our room was ready (loved this), we are in a Balcony Cabin 4025, this cabin has a larger balcony and we love the cabin and location. Room Steward has been excellent. We have Club Orange dining and I’m so glad we made that purchase (for us it was $15 pp/pd). Our servers in Club Orange are fantastic and we love everything about it. We like a table for two and enjoy chatting with everyone around us and for us the intimacy of club orange is perfect. I have noticed that not everything in Club Orange dining is made by the chef in CO, some food comes from the main dining room kitchen. The breakfast is made fresh at the CO kitchen and we have really enjoyed the breakfast offerings. We had lunch at Pinnacle Grill once and loved it, we may go back this week. Not sure about other specialty dining for dinner we’ll see what this week brings. Seating around the Lido pool is limited compared to other ships we’ve been on, and I’ve never seen the rooftop fully open yet, only half of it. It has very comfortable loungers though. We have spent some time at the seaview pool as well but again loungers on the pool level are limited and sometimes hard to come by. All service has been great and our favorite area has to be the music walk, love the Rolling Stone Rock Room, Billboard onboard and BB Kings blues club, we enjoy bouncing around to each venue nighty. I do wish they had more Main Theater production shows. they have only 2 dance shows and 2 guest entertainers (a magician and a comedian). I believe the comedian is back this week not sure about the magician, would be nice to have different options but if not we’ll enjoy some movies on the lido deck in the evening. Turn around Details for Today December 8th, 2019. Yesterday we were giving a letter stating we must meet in the World Stage Theater at 10AM. Once everyone is there we would be escorted off the ship back into the Terminal and through Immigration CBP check. This process went fairly smooth as you can image there are always those people who choose to play by there own rules so we had to wait in the terminal luggage collection area until they could find and clear 6 missing guests. I’ll attached the letter for you to read the full details. We arrived in the theater 10-15 minutes early so the entire process for us was about 1 hour, we were back onboard around 10:45AM. Also if you are interested here is a link to all our photos from last week. Main photo link to all galleries Link to just Nieuw Statendam ship Photos Link to all our Food Photos (more photos to come this week) Link to our Balcony cabin 4025 Photos Behind the Scenes Culinary Tour (for CO guests) If anyone is interested I will also attached the When and Where’s from last week and CO Menu’s Note: I'm still on vacation so I may not be available to answer all questions, but I may check in from time to time. Will give a final update Next week after the cruise. In Transit Nieuw Statendam Dec 8, 2019.pdf day 1 when and where.pdf day 2 when and where.pdf day 3 when and where.pdf day 4 when and where.pdf day 5 when and where.pdf day 6 when and where.pdf day 7 when and where.pdf day 8 when and where.pdf Day 1 Dinner Menu.pdf Day 2 Dinner Menu.pdf Day 3 Dinner Menu.pdf Day 4 Dinner Menu.pdf Day 5 Dinner Menu.pdf Day 6 Dinner Menu.pdf Day 7 Dinner Menu.pdf Club Orange Breakfast Menu.pdf
  23. 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.
  24. Today, Sunday 3rd May, we would have been in Montréal having completed our Zaandam Canada-New England cruise. Then on Tuesday off to Amsterdam to board Nieuw Statendam next Sunday for a Baltics cruise, then home to Vancouver. We've been reminding each other of where we would have been, throughout the past week or two. Ahh well, there will be more cruises next year, and plenty to dream about. Now off to watch some of our old cruise movies again! 🙂
  25. Excellent program of the Nieuw Statendam You will wish to go to the North Cape another year and visit Alesund, Trondheim, Tromso, Hammerfest and a few other ports (very nice to visit some of them for the second time). In addition to the suggestions above: Molde: Travel like the locals: book a bus trip with them: Molde-Atlantic Road - Molde Stavanger: short walk through the street with the white houses next to the cruise terminal and do not forget to visit the canning museum somewhere in the middle at the right hand side of the street (do not forget to ask for the guide; he is very good!). Interesting story and display of the fishing industry. Oslo: take the public bus nearby to the Museum Island and visit one or more of the musea over there. A must see for young and old IMO: Viking museum. Enjoy your cruise.
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