Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Krazy Kruizers

Westerdam - General Comments

Recommended Posts

The Westerdam is a beautiful ship. Loved the various shades of purple, gold and white throughout the ship. The flowers were gorgeous. Thought our flowers in the cabin were the best ever. And there were lots of plants all over the ship - in the window ledges of the photo gallery and the Explorer's Lounge. Loved the white and purple chairs and sofas in the Vista Lounge. The only color scheme I didn't like was the carpet on the Lido deck- bold red's, blue's, green's, etc.

The first week there was a raffle to collect donations for the tsunami victims. The $2 donation was to be sent to the Indonesian Red Cross. They announced the winner near the end of the week. There were quite a few raffle tickets in the bin. The winner got a free dinner in the Pinnacle Grill which also included a free bottle of wine.

Loved the new swath that cover's about 1/2 of the bed. It helps to protect the white duvet from getting dirty. Also takes away from from all that whiteness. I always got the impression that the bed was never completely made when I looked at the white duvet. The mattress was great.

Nearly everyday at Bingo there were 2 for 1 drinks - anything you wanted. That was a real bargin. It wasn't as popular when Bingo was held in the Vista Lounge as there wasn't a lot of waitstaff to take care of everyone. We ended up going to serving area ourselves and getting our drinks along with several other people. When Bingo was held in the Crow's Nest, a lot of drinks were sold - more help there. The 2 for 1 drinks were on sell for about 3/4 to 1 hour - depended on the length of th Bingo games.

Every evening there was half price drinks from 9:15 - 10:15 in the Northern Lights.

There was 1 midship's elevator that didn't work for the entire 2 weeks.

When we got on the ship, raffle tickets were passed out to everyone. Prizes were given away at the sail-away party.

There wasn't any Ben & Jerry's ice cream cart anywhere on the ship.

There were lots of choices at the ice cream areas. Some days each side offered a couple of different flavors. You were not able to put your own toppings on. You told the boy what you wanted and he would put it on for you. The toppings were kept behind the counter. Usually there were 2 or 3 liquors available to put on your ice cream.

The bread pussing was great. First time in quite awhile that the sauce wasn't watered down.

They had potato chips at both deli areas. Each day there were 2 special sandwiches offered. The men working here always smiled and laughed while they worked.

There were hand sanitizers at various places on the ship. Felt that they needed more. On deck 3 as you enter the dining room from the starboard side there isn't any machine. You have to cross over to the port side to use the machine.

Felt that the water in the public restrooms should be hot. I would let the water run for several minutes but it never got past luke warm. I made mention of this last year when we were on the Oosterdam. Problem was ignored. And with the possibility of the Norvo virus going around, I feel that the water should be hot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

KK, thank you for review. I am going on Maasdam in 9 days and will look for hand sanitizer. Once again, thank you. Welcome home.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We thought the food in the dining room was the best we have had for some time. Each evening there were 7 entrees which included one pasta dish and one vegetarian dish. There was of course one item listed under the comfort food section. In addition to those you could also order the traditional ceasar salad, grilled salmon, seared chicken breast, grilled sirloin steak, and baked potato.

There was a slight difference in the menus from week one to week two. The first week chicken cordon blue was offered - the second week it was replaced with chicken creole. The first week we had steamed Alaskan King Crab legs, New England lobster tails - big and delicious, & Beef Wellington. None of these were offered the second week. In place of the big lobster tails was surf and turf - a small filet and very small lobster tail. The Beef Wellington was replaced with Saltimbocca of Veal. Nothing was substituted for the crab legs. Only 6 items on the menu that evening.

Meatloaf was offered one evening in the dining room under "comfort food". It was also offered at lunch time in the dining room as a meatloaf sandwich.

The Pinnacle was open for lunch 2 days on the Eastern part and 1 day on the Western part. Charge is $10 per person.

Flaming desserts were offered 5 out of 7 nights in the Explorer's Lounge from 7:30 - 9:30. The first week's offerings were pear, peaches, pineapple, mango and bananas. The second week did not offer the bananas. There were no crepes.

Caviar - forget about it. It was offered only once each week as part of an appitizer (got just a drop) - Captain's Hors D'Oeuvre: smoked salmon, duck pate', marinated shrimps and Sevruga caviar with a crispy salad bouquet. There wasn't even any caviar at the suite buffet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From 7 - 11 PM each evening there were flaming coffees available in the Explorer's Lounge. DH loved them. The glasses were pre-coated on the outside with about an inch of sugar. Then 151 rum is poured into the glass and flamed. To put out the flame the bar tender would throw in a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg. Coffee is then poured to the bottom of the sugar line. Depending on what coffee special you order, about 1/2 ounce of usually 2 liquors are then poured into the glass. If the coffee has only 1 liquor listed then you got a full ounce of the liquor - more if you got to really know the guy making them like DH did.

Flaming coffees available were:

Bon Voyage - Cointreau and DOM Benedictine

Captain's - Grand Mariner and Tia Maria

Royal Dutch - Chocolate Mint Liquor

Prince Charles - Drambuie

Irish - Sambuca

Canadian - Canadian Whiskey

Almond Cream - Amaretto and Bailey's Irish Cream

Jamaican - Rum and Tia Maria

Mexican - Kahlua

Kiss of Fire - Tia Maria and Cointreau

Westerdam - Hennessey and DOM Benedictine

There was a wine tasting held each week in the Pinnacle Grill - $28 per person plus 15% gratuity. If you ordered any wine during the tasting, they gave you a 15% discount. Wine tasted included:

Mimm, Cordon Rouge Brut, France

Viognier McCrea Cellars, 2002, Red Mountain, Washington

Chardonnay Apex, Washington

Shiraz Rosemont, Hunter Valley, Australia

Cabernet Sauvignon, Robert Mondavi, Oakville, Napa Valley, CA

Harvey's Bristol Cream

There were 2 wine navigator packages available:

Regular - 6 bottles - $125

Premium - 6 bottles - $235

Everyday from 11:30 - 2 you could pre-order your dinner at the Lido and get 10% off (we didn't have that on the Statendam).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shops on board - they looked to have the same stuff as on every other ship that we have been on recently. But for some reason people were buying everything - sales were really good.

There was a sale on photos - must not have done good business here. You could buy any 10 large photos for $124.95 and get a free cruise chronical DVD. They claimed that you saved $150 with this deal.

The photographers were not pushy on this ship. Whenever we said that we didn't want out photo taken, they just quietly moved on to the next group.

Dress code - not followed. On formal nights we saw people dressed in all styles going into the dining room. And a couple of times on casual nights some older people went into the dining room in shorts. No one stopped them.

In the cabin directory - new style on this ship - it states that the aft pool is for adults only. However, the sign at the aft pool saids that children in diapers are not permitted in the pool and children under 13 are to accompanied by an adult. This was not the case either week. We saw children in the pool with diapers on a couple of occassions. And there were unsupervised children in there as well. And no one said anything to them.

The first night we got on the ship, everyone got a notice in their cabins about room service. They advised people using room service at breakfast to expect delays on days when there would be several tours leaving at the same time and many people wanting orders delivered at the same time. In essence they were advising people to check their daily programs and use the Lido and dining room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wonderful points you are mentioning, IMO

 

 

Seems like many things were similar on Veendam. I think you are confirming what I mentioned in my "comments re: Veendam" that cruises of over ten days are now noticeably different from cruises of ten days and less. I suspected that was the case.

 

Our dining room menus were very good and much improved from recent menus we saw on Maasdam, Zuiderdam and even Rotterdam during the last year.

 

VERY interesting to me that if one was lucky to by chance have booked your first week as their seven day cruise, they would have enjoyed Beef Wellington, large lobster tails etc and they would have come home and told us about good menus. If they arbitrarily had chosen the next week, they would have been very disappointed. Was there some major difference in the price you paid for week one vs. week two????

 

Why do you think the menus were so much better on the first week?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your informative comments. I'm disappointed that with regard to dining room dress code and adults-only aft pool that there was no enforcement. You either have a standard or you don't. I'm NOT suggesting they drop the standards ... just that they take appropriate steps to make them stick.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
b]

..... We saw children in the pool with diapers on a couple of occassions....

Shorts in the dining room, unsupervised children in the pools, etc. are standards that I agree HAL should enforce.

 

BUT, diapers in the pool is not a standard- it is a serious health issue and it is inexcusable for HAL not to remove those children IMMEDIATELY from the pool and let the parents know it will not be tolerated. If that is not done, then pax who see it and do not complain immediately and loudly are responsible also. :mad:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The cabin prices were the same for both weeks. The taxes for the second week were about $7 per person higher.

Since we both love Beef Wellington and New England lobster tails it was a little disappointing to us not to see them on the menu you the next week. Others wouldn't care one way or another. We didn't order the surf and turf the second week. A couple of people we talked to said the tails were gummy. Others knew from postings that the tails would be small so they ordered a couple of them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
From 7 - 11 PM each evening there were flaming coffees available in the Explorer's Lounge. DH loved them. The glasses were pre-coated on the outside with about an inch of sugar. Then 151 rum is poured into the glass and flamed. To put out the flame the bar tender would throw in a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg. Coffee is then poured to the bottom of the sugar line. Depending on what coffee special you order, about 1/2 ounce of usually 2 liquors are then poured into the glass. If the coffee has only 1 liquor listed then you got a full ounce of the liquor - more if you got to really know the guy making them like DH did.

 

Flaming coffees available were:

Bon Voyage - Cointreau and DOM Benedictine

Captain's - Grand Mariner and Tia Maria

Royal Dutch - Chocolate Mint Liquor

Prince Charles - Drambuie

Irish - Sambuca

Canadian - Canadian Whiskey

Almond Cream - Amaretto and Bailey's Irish Cream

Jamaican - Rum and Tia Maria

Mexican - Kahlua

Kiss of Fire - Tia Maria and Cointreau

Westerdam - Hennessey and DOM Benedictine

 

 

 

KK, this sounds like it could be a new nightly ritual after dinner.:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In looking through the new cabin directory, I was amused at this: "Dentist - HAL is proud to have a dental professional on board each ship. Should you have a dental emergency or if you want a brighter smile, we have the facilities and the expertise. A professional whitening procedure can be performed in only 2 hours. Wonder what they charge for that?

The first week of the cruise, the Champagne Strings played on the first formal night in the dining room from 5:45 - 6:35 (don't know the times for the 8 and 8:30 seatings). The second formal night Steve Lowenthal from the Piano Bar played from 5:45 - 6:30.

The second week the Champagne Strings played both formal nights in the dining room.

Baked Alaska - we didn't stay around for it. They only do it once for both seatings. We were told that they wait until the lower seating is nearly done with their dinners and then they do the parade which begins around 7:20 - 7:25.

There wasn't a Mr/Ms Westerdam selected for either week.

DH does like the new ladders in the pools. They slope at a nice angle and have more rungs making it easier to get in and out of the pools.

The first week there were only a couple of tables available most of the day in the Windstar Cafe. Because the Hudson, Half Moon, Styvusent Rooms were all reserved for the bridge palyers, several others would sit at 4 of the 7 tables playing cards most of the day. On another table, the was a large display of all the shops, etc. for each port.

When we were getting on the ship in Nassau, a crew member was assigned to take away any liquor purchases. After all these months with the new policy in affect, some people still are trying to bring alcohol on board at the various ports. One elderly man was screaming at the crew member who just smiled and wrote his cabin number and name on the bag. The man claimed that he was never informed about the policy.

On the Oosterdam there was a lovely sea scene as a backdrop when the glass elevators when below a certain deck. On the Westerdam the scenery is a rock formation - dark and dumb.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lisa

Nights when we weren't at an event, we down at the Explorer's Lounge. DH tried several of the coffees. I am not a coffee drinker so I usually had a Grand Marnier or a B & B.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I mentioned this on the "weekly" report.

Chris Hewitson, environmental officer, whom we talked with during the second week's VIP party said that the party is really a "Whose Who" party and that the VIP party is the suite buffet held usually the last sea day.

Gee, after all these years, we have given the wrong names to the wrong parties.

Anyway, that other special party (not luncheon or buffet) - the first week a lot of suite passengers were invited and very few of us were invited the second week. In fact there were probably about 60 of us there the second week compared to the 150 the first week.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

KK,

 

Out 1st cruise will be on the Westerdam in March. We're 43 & 40 and like to lay around the pool, when we're not laying on the beach. What was the poolside deck chair situation like? Do pax save their loungers and never show up, or hours later? Are the older pax as considerate of others as they want others to be towards them? As I mature, age-wise not emotionally, I find that the golden rule is spouted more by my elders as rule others should follow, but they don't apply it to themselves.

 

Do people really take cruises just to play cards all day? I was hoping HAL was a sophisticated, mature crowd, not transplants from Del Boca Vista, Phase II.

 

abbott

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks KK for giving us some great information. You are a wonderful observer of life around you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Abbott.

 

We were on Westerdam twice last year and liked it a lot.

 

I know what you mean about the oldsters - some are very demanding and think they deserve to be able to push to the head of the line. (And once they get there they slow down dramatically.) But, for the most part, that type is in the minority.

 

As in any age group, or any group, most people are wonderful and some aren't so wonderful. Someone once told me that about 5 percent of people are jerks (although he used a different word) and the rest are pretty good. I think that percentage can rise or fall, depending on the venue or the situation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The chairs around the Lido Pool went very quickly. And the majority of them were occupied most of the day. Very few people left towels and disappeared for long periods of time. The better loungers are in this area - another reason why people wouldn't give them up. On BBQ night, the deck crews had a hard time making the people give them up so that they could set up extra tables.

The aft pool was different. Some days the loungers remained empty because of cloudy and cool weather. Days when the sun was out, it was crowded. And there times when people would leave their towels behind on the chairs and others would come out and see the towels there and move on. The aft deck hands kept a better eye on the loungers and removed the towels within 15 minutes.

The promenade deck had a lot of the wooden deck chairs with pads. There were also a lot of wooden deck chairs on the observaion deck.

By the way, we were told that you can buy those wooden deck chairs through HAL for $450 each.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There were some pushy people of all ages.

One woman didn't want to leave the Vista Lounge at the end of the first disembarkation talk. The crew finally got her out so that they could clean up to get ready for the Mariner's party. When she came out of the Lounge she wouldn't go to the end of the line - stayed right at the front and told everyone that she had already been in the lounge and shouldn't have been made to leave and that she wasn't going to get at the end of the line. As many of you know they have the various groups stand for the red pins and blue pins and those who hadn't quite made it to the first level. Her name was never called our for any award nor did she stand at any time. She was drinking the champagne. I watched her the whole and at the end I couldn' resist asking her how many days she had cruised on HAL. This was her first cruise!!! She wasn't entitled to be at the party. She just came for the free champagne.

Another evening we were in line for the show. It was the evening of the captain's welcoming party. Some people were getting pushy and tried to enter the lounge by making excuses that they were late for the party and just wanted to sit in the balcony and watch from there. They got away with it. When the doors finally opened, the entire first row on the starboard side was being saved by 4 people.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thankfully, folks like this are in the minority. But they can still create a bad taste in your mouth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great review BTW! :)

 

This was her first cruise!!! She wasn't entitled to be at the party. She just came for the free champagne.

My parents are Mariners, but we will be cruising with HAL for the first time. Will we be allowed to attend the party with my parents?

 

Flaming coffees available were:

How much are the flaming coffees?

 

The chairs around the Lido Pool went very quickly. And the majority of them were occupied most of the day.

Are there chairs located around the upper railing of the Lido pool. (the deck with that houses the pool cover? Also, how do you get to the Aft pool besides going through the Lido Restaurant?

 

Everyday from 11:30 - 2 you could pre-order your dinner at the Lido and get 10% off (we didn't have that on the Statendam).

Could you please explain this statement? Pre-order dinner from where? A discount off of what?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Someone once told me that about 5 percent of people are jerks

 

 

Nothing could be farther from the truth .

 

 

I've run into everyone from that 5% on my cruise in Dec.

As the saying goes, they travel in packs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are no lounge chairs by the railing above the pool. This is not a very large area. On the non Vista class this is the jogging area.

The flaming coffees were $5.75.

There is a stand by one of doors on the Lido deck not far from the pool where a wine steward sets up a couple of bottles of wine, has a wine list and the evening's dinner menu. If you wish to pre-order a bottle of wine to have with your meal in either the main dining room or the Pinnacle Grill you can order it here and it will be at your table when you go to dine. If you order a white wine it will already be in a ine bucket chilling down. The red wine should be on your table.

First time cruisers - when we cruised for the first time on HAL we didn't even think about attending the party knowing that we would be sailing with HAL again and would then be invited to the parties. I will not tell you what you should or should not do.

To get to the aft pool, go to the aft elevators which will take you to the Lido deck. It is just a few steps around the corner from the elevators to the doors that go out to the pool.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There is a stand by one of doors on the Lido deck not far from the pool where a wine steward sets up a couple of bottles of wine, has a wine list and the evening's dinner menu. If you wish to pre-order a bottle of wine to have with your meal in either the main dining room or the Pinnacle Grill you can order it here and it will be at your table when you go to dine. If you order a white wine it will already be in a ine bucket chilling down. The red wine should be on your table.
OK, I misunderstood when you said "pre-order your dinner at the Lido and get 10% off." :rolleyes: That's actually a very nice deal. :)

 

First time cruisers - when we cruised for the first time on HAL we didn't even think about attending the party knowing that we would be sailing with HAL again and would then be invited to the parties. I will not tell you what you should or should not do.
Thank you for clearing that up. My parents will probably not go without us as they depend on us to help them get around. We will probably not miss much anyway. We enjoy going to one of the lounges to have a pre dinner drink, so we will just have our own little party. :D
To get to the aft pool, go to the aft elevators which will take you to the Lido deck. It is just a few steps around the corner from the elevators to the doors that go out to the pool.
I should have been more specific and asked how to get from the Lido pool to the aft pool. Is there a stairway?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My parents are Mariners, but we will be cruising with HAL for the first time. Will we be allowed to attend the party with my parents?

 

 

No, you should not attend. The party is for repeaters. Your second HAL cruise will be your first one as a "repeater". Of course, no one is going to have a computer at the doorway checking to be sure you are not cheating. If someone cheats........well........

 

We have cruised a great many days with HAL and when we cruised with very good friends of ours from home and they were not Mariners. We did NOT bring them to the party with us. They did not qualify.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • NCL Sail-Away Giveaway Sweepstakes - Win a 7-Day Cruise on Norwegian Joy!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...