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RevNeal

RevNeal LIVE! From the ms Prinsendam

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Very much enjoying your posts, Greg, and thank you for taking us along with you. All sounds fabulous aboard Prinsendam and I wish you the very best of voyages. Hope you all have a spectacular time. :)

 

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Glad to see you're back again on another cruise and posting about it :D

 

I've always enjoyed your posts and will continue with this one. I also follow Capt. Albert's blog.

 

Enjoy your cruise, and thank you for posting :)

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No not the single. I booked a category M, inside guaranty. I am told they are VERY small......but I am only one person.

Please do tell me.....

The M-category cabins are the same size as the inside single, but with two beds instead of one.

It's going to be tight, but do-able. The beds are in an "L" position. DO NOT try to put them together. It can be done, but you will be sorry. I was in a cabin where the couple did that very thing---you could not squeeze around the bed.

I found the single very spacious, but I was able to use the space where the second bed goes as the place to line up the table, and drag the chair out of the way. With the bed there, you'll have to use the center, opened up, space for those pieces. However, you will have that second bed as a place to set things out, so it might work out well.

 

The closet was more than generous! I could have done a world cruise, and still had space!. The suitcases slid in there nicely, too.

The bathroom was also spacious; I had a shower. It could be a little more cramped if you have a tub, but not badly, as the shower was large. It was a sliding door to the bathroom, as was the door to the closet. They had a large brass hook & eye closure.

There was drawer space, and a nice "entertainment center" with the TV, fridge, and more shelves. No need for a lot of bending.

 

The photo tour on the HAL site is pretty accurate.

Hope this helps.

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Greetings from just off the North Coast of Scotland aboard the lovely and Elegant Explorer, the ms Prinsendam!

 

cruisemap.jpg

 

Some of you may be wondering what a “Voyage to the Top of the World” includes. So, here’s a map of our itinerary. As you can see, we take quite a long voyage north … all the way to the polar pack. The Captain is hopeful that we’ll be able to make it all the way to the permanent ice cap, but there are – as always – no guarantees. May and June were good months for freeing Longyearbyen and Ny Alesund of ice … they were still ice-locked as late as April. However, there shouldn’t be any problem of getting in there and then sailing further north to find polar ice.

 

I noticed that I missed a question in my reading through the thread last night. Specifically, Sailkeywest asked: “why do you prefer the Prisendam over other styles of vessels?” That’s a good question. Everybody is going to be different in terms of likes and dislikes when it comes to ship-size and “style.” And that’s a good thing, for if we were all the same that would be weird. I prefer cruise ships that are smaller, not as crowded, quieter, refined, elegant, understated, nautical in look, feel, and tradition. In short, I much prefer cruise ships that retains at least some of the very best aspects of an Ocean Liner of old. I do not like the large, crowded, loud, thumpa-thumpa neon glitz and wham-bang which seems to go with so much of the cruise-line industry’s new-builds these days. I’m on a ship … I expect ship-type things and experiences. If I’d wanted a water park, a bowling ally, an ice skating rink, central park or side-walk cafés, I would have gone to places on land where those can be found. HAL’s ships tend more toward the nautical-type experience and away from the glitz, loud, plastic resort-type experience. Until this curse I had experienced the Statendam and Rotterdam class ships and adored them for their significant attempts to maintain nautical-ness while still being innovative. These ships are not crowded, nor are they over-sized floating rectangles of glass doors and balconie … they are ships. The Vista class and Signature class ships are more in the direction of the floating resorts, but even here the interior spaces are quieter, smaller, more refined, less-glitzy … i.e., what I’m looking for on a cruise ship. When boarding the Prinsendam, however, I think I’ve found the quintessential example of precisely what I’m looking for. Not that I no longer like the S and R ships, or that I’ll never cruise aboard a Vista again – I love them and will – however, in the Prisendam I have the most complete example of the kind of ocean-going cruise-experience I love.

 

Which brings us to the presence of wee-ones aboard this ship! Yes, indeed, there are youth, teens, and even young children aboard this ship. They come from different countries, including the USA, however many also appear to be European. They’re aboard with immediate family and with grandparents and great grandparents. There are enough kids that the ship’s staff has opened a Club HAL for them in the Stuyvesant Room, on the Dolphin Deck just off the Atrium. Thus far the kids are proving themselves to be well-behaved young ladies and gentlemen. The older youth have occasionally been seen roaming the public rooms later in the evenings (after 10 pm), but they’re not doing anything other than ordering soft drinks from the bar and going to late-night movies in the Wajang Theater. On formal night they were all dressed up as HAL requests and suggests (or in age-appropriate interpretations thereof).

 

Now, on to a few remarks about today. Today we anchored at Scrabster and Thurso on the North Coast of Scotland, in full-view of the Orkneys. This was a maiden call for the Prinsendam, seeing as last year they were not able to make their call here due to severe weather. Today, however, our weather was very nearly perfect! Not to say that we had a sunny or warm day -- we didn't. But there was almost no wind, there was very little rain (a sprinkle here and there) and, while the sky was overcast, it didn't feel especially cold (it was about 55 degrees). Tender service went without a hitch and, by 8:30 am, we were in our bus and headed for the other side of Dunnet Head and the Caithness Coast. Here, we had the joy of touring the Castle of Mey and Gardens … the personal home of the Queen Mother from 1955 until her death in 2002. Some jokingly called it a “Castle-et,” for it is really just a small country home with a castle-like exterior visage. It was a very enjoyable tour, with lovely scenery and interesting cultural tid-bits thrown in to fill out a 4-hour morning tour. I HIGHLY recommend this tour to anyone with a sense of history or a love of the British Royal Family.

 

All-in-all, a very pleasant day and port of call. Tonight we have a pleasant cruise to the Faroe Islands and our port of call there, tomorrow, and Runavik. Tonight we're to have Disco Night in the Ocean Bar! Yippie! Time to put on the Polyester and platform shoes!

 

Oh ... yes ... scandals. Must report on some of the scandals ... but ... not yet. I think I'll dangle 'em. ;)

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Oh-oh. If you're getting cold, then my sympathies to Christopher. He must be suffering---and you haven't even spotted ice yet!

 

Never fear ... all I had to do was adjust the AC up a tad and we were both fine and happy. :) It's getting colder outside, though, so that is occasioning a little less AC. We'll be adjusting the thermostat quite a bit from here on out, I imagine. They're telling us tomorrow we should have a high in the low to mid 50s. ;)

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Hi Rev, Say hi to the gang for me. Too bad I cancelled this time around but that's how it goes sometimes. I have been busy with Panama and Alaska cruises so far this year and this one got the squeeze. Looking forward to reading your reports of shore excursions and life on board.

 

Oh, Loretta ... you're missed! We wish you could have made it, but I certainly understand why you had to cancel. Blessings to you!

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RevNeal, If you have time please say Hi to Gil the bartender in the Crows Nest from Joe and Mary Jo. Thanks

P.S. Have Gil show you the trick with the straws

 

I will! Thanks for the tip!

Gil ... trick with the straws. :D

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I am so excited reading about your times on this ship. I will be in one of the VERY small inside bottom rooms for 66 days in January....tell me please.....will I be claustrophobic?? Is it THAT small???

 

Ruth will have to speak to that issue. I've seen the inside of those cabins, now, and I can affirm that I would be perfectly fine in one of those inside cabins for 66 days. I would be out-and-about the ship so much that I wouldn't have time to be claustrophobic. But I can imagine that some people might get that way. Are you prone to being uncomfortable in tight space???

 

*** Edit later:

 

Ah, I see she HAS spoken to the issue. Good.

If possible, I'm going to try and take some photos of the Inside Cabins. It may have to wait until we're disembarking, but I'll try.

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Almost made it to thr 3rd time Firth of Forth.... Oh well, screen needed cleaning anyway:D

 

Were you able to see the Oil Rigs that Captain Albert mentions in his blog??

 

Hopefully, one day we will be able to enjoy the Grand Prinsendam....

 

Thank you Greg for this daily review. I can dream...:)

 

Yes, indeed, Joanie, we saw many of those Oil Rigs from the crows nest and from our dining table in the Pinnacle Last Night.

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I'm enjoying your report, Greg. I'm really glad to hear that you're enjoying the Slinkiedam aka Prinsendam. We will be boarding in just over a month for a short (for us) 43 day sojourn, starting out by circling the British Isles. Keep those kids corraled and make sure everything is in good shape when you leave.:D

 

Yes, sir! I'll do my best!

And my best to Slinky.

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Hi Greg,

Glad to hear you are enjoying a wonderful trip. As always, your reports are very interesting and well written. My best to Christopher!!!

Adele

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Debbi and I are following every post. Your descriptive posts are always so interesting. Hope you continue to enjoy this wondeful adventure!

 

Best wishes,

Paul & Debbi

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The M-category cabins are the same size as the inside single, but with two beds instead of one.

 

It's going to be tight, but do-able. The beds are in an "L" position. DO NOT try to put them together. It can be done, but you will be sorry. I was in a cabin where the couple did that very thing---you could not squeeze around the bed.

I found the single very spacious, but I was able to use the space where the second bed goes as the place to line up the table, and drag the chair out of the way. With the bed there, you'll have to use the center, opened up, space for those pieces. However, you will have that second bed as a place to set things out, so it might work out well.

 

The closet was more than generous! I could have done a world cruise, and still had space!. The suitcases slid in there nicely, too.

The bathroom was also spacious; I had a shower. It could be a little more cramped if you have a tub, but not badly, as the shower was large. It was a sliding door to the bathroom, as was the door to the closet. They had a large brass hook & eye closure.

There was drawer space, and a nice "entertainment center" with the TV, fridge, and more shelves. No need for a lot of bending.

 

The photo tour on the HAL site is pretty accurate.

Hope this helps.

 

Ruth.....Thank you SO much. That is a great description...and I am sure I will be just fine....like you said...the second bed makes a good counter!! Like Rev. Neal says.....I don't plan on spending much time in the room....as long as there is enough space to put 66 days worth of "STUFF" away and a place to sleep comfortably...oh...and bathe....I will be fine! Let's see where I actually end up....this is a guarantee booking so we'll see.

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Rev. Neal

 

My wife and I got off the Prinsendam as you were getting on. We had a wonderful two weeks aboard. The ship may be old but she is well taken care of. We had many kids on the ship as well. The shows we saw were excellent. Our only issue was with room service delivery not being done on time. I think as many as 80 of our people were remaing onboard to do a back to back.

 

Enjoy your cruise. I look forward to your report.

 

Robert

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Quote..Rev Neal:

 

"Until this curse I had experienced the Statendam and Rotterdam"

 

Ah, The Curse Of The Prinsendam! :eek:

 

A recently discovered Miss Marple/Hercule Poirot whodunnit?? ;)

 

Agatha Christy lived in the neighborhood.....

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Can't thank you enough, dear RevNeal, for ministering to all of us via your truly marvelous posts! ADORED your apt and beautifully worded commentary about glitzy resort ships vs. elegant nautical ships--especially after our January cruise on the Oasis of the Seas.... ;) And can't wait to experience P-dam (booked for FLL-AMS, May 13-June 6, 2011)!!!

 

Appreciatively,

Mary-Lou (& DH Dave)

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Yes, the "Curse of the Prinsendam" is real... at least for us. Having experienced this wonderful ship, none of the other ships seem to suit us quite as well. Had we never sailed Prinsendam, we would likely be perfectly happy with S and R class ships, but the curse keeps drawing us back:eek:

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Forgot to ask if you'd share Captain Albert's explanation of why P-dam now docks and embarks from Tilbury rather than Greenwich....

 

Thanks,

Mary-Lou

:)

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Yes, the cabin is a bit small, but it’s not uncomfortable and there is no wasted space. The bathroom in my cabin has some awkward characteristics about it: there is NO electrical plug to be found therein, the shower curtain doesn’t go the full length of the tub (just 4/5 of the distance from one end to the other), and if one is more than 6’3” they won’t be able stand up in the shower/tub. Over all, however, the ship is in amazing good shape, be-speaking the continual maintenance work done by her marvelous crew.

 

Thanks for the reports Greg. Just found your thread after responding to arzz's earlier. Can't wait to hear your take on this trip especially since I was on this trip last year. I understand your comments on the cabin being small. It took me a few days and some bruises to figure out how to get dressed in the bathroom without banging my knees on the sink. Ours had a sliding door to get into it and took a while to get used to that too. Also be careful of the continual maintenance work. Last year they painted my sister's room so she had to bunk in with my mother and I for a night becuase of the fumes while her husband slept in their cabin with a fan and the balcony door open in the northern part of Norway.

 

Glad you enjoyed the Falkirk Wheel. We had a great time there.

 

Say hi to Mary Ellen and Karl for me and enjoy your trip to the wonderful northern part of the world.

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Another intriguing update from you, Greg!

I hope you will like the Faroe Islands. We thought they were one of most pleasant surprises of our Ireland and Iceland cruise some years back.

Please pass our regards to Christopher!

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Oh, I'm so glad you got to see the Castle of Mey. I just finished reading an outstanding biography of the Queen Mother (The Queen Mother by Shawcross) in which he tells of her finding it, renovating it, and living in it periodically. I'm hoping that we'll get a glimpse of it from the Eurodam as we sail to Orkney in a few weeks. I had looked it all up on the 'net and found many photos of the castle inside and out. Sounds like a dreary, lonely place.

 

Sail on...we're with you...

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Greg,

 

First of all forgive me for not sending greetings to Christopher in my previous post. (My Bad :o )

 

And I would love to know how mulch smaller the cabin "Feels" compared to similar on a Vista Class.

Recognizing that one gladly gives up some things to experience the uniqueness and time warp that is the "Prins".

Is it all that noticeable after initial adjustment ?

Real Estate agents frequently use "Elegant" as a euphemism for "less than spacious"

 

Another question I haven't seen asked: do you know if she, her hull that is, has an Ice Rating ?, considering she is always doing Top 'o The World and Antarctica.

 

And another, Does it still get dark at night or just Twilight ?

 

Now a comment; In spite of the noble calling you already exercise, It seems you have missed at least two others: Comic Writer & Tour Guide.

The first "Live From" of yours I read was of the Eurodam Inaugural, which was one of the inspirations for needing to meet you.

So very glad I did ! (Hello Ruth & Christopher)

Now you seem to be setting the "barre" even higher :cool:

 

Keep up the Excellent work(?), better said, SHARING,

 

r.

PS: Is there anyone on CC you don't know?, or who doesn't know you?? :confused:

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Another question I haven't seen asked: do you know if she, her hull that is, has an Ice Rating ?, considering she is always doing Top 'o The World and Antarctica.

I took this cruise three years ago, and IIRC, the Prinsendam does not have an ice rating.

On this ship the bow is an integral part of the Promenade Deck, however there's a barrier to keep passengers off. Anyway, when we reached the pack ice, the ship moved forward ever so slowly. And officer climbed up to the exact bow, and laid down on a sort of platform, hanging over the edge. A couple of people held on to his legs while he did this. He was giving signals as to what was going on with the ship and the ice.

Meanwhile, the stern was kept totally out of the ice. Not good to use the propellers as a blender for our frozen drinks. :rolleyes:

 

It really was an interesting maneuver to watch, over and above watching the ice itself, and looking for polar bears.

The light was so flat that pictures I have look like they were taken in black & white, even though they are in color.

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Hi Greg,

 

greetings from the land downunder...

 

I still remmember my first encounter with the Prinsendam as she docked in our wonderful Sydney Harbour at Circular Quay.

 

She looked majestic bathed in sunlight and such an appropriate position with our Sydney Harbour bridge and Opera House as back drops.

 

Best of all were the two wonderful people on board that day who got myself and my beautiful DW hooked to HAL and cruising.

 

(:)Grumpelslinkendam:)) From the Russian Fairytales!!!!

 

Although we have moved onto the Eurodam and next year the Nieuw Amsterdam nothing compares to her elegance and what a real ship should look like.

 

I will keep looking forward to your wonderful posts each day and hopefully some beautiful pictures at the end.

 

Grumpy I hope that you take over from when Greg finishes off so we can get more of the Prinsendam.

 

Rock on HAL and the Curse of the Prinsendam. :)

 

 

Cristiano.

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