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suzannecruisecritic

Anyone recently on Koningsdam?

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We’re sailing in July and would love to hear your thoughts on the specialty dining options onboard Koningsdam, including the pop ups like Cellar Masters Dinner and De Librije. We’ve previously sailed on the NA in Alaska and enjoyed both PG and Tamarind. 

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Tamarind was great on the Koningsdam on our cruise last month. Nice and quiet especially on Gala Night--great personal service. Be sure to use the stern elevator...

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40 minutes ago, Mandalay1903 said:

Tamarind was great on the Koningsdam on our cruise last month. Nice and quiet especially on Gala Night--great personal service. Be sure to use the stern elevator...

Looking forward to Tamarind! Thank you for the elevator tip. Did you enjoy the ship? It will be our first time on Koningsdam and as usual I've read many mixed reviews. If you have time to share any other tips or suggestions I would welcome any of your advise since you've been there very recently 🙂 

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The Koningsdam is beautiful--Music Walk is great with the shared, larger venue for BB King and Lincoln Center.  The biggest problem (IMO) is that with this new Pinnacle Class ship they've added about 500 guests onto a ship with public spaces about the same size as the Eurodam. Therefore, everything is much more crowded--especially the World Stage, Music Walk, and the Casino. Plan to arrive at least 1/2 hour early to get a seat in the World Stage for a popular performance (e.g. dance company or America's Test Kitchen). Also, the Casino allows smoking so if you're a non-smoker... The third problem is that the Promenade Deck outside walkway is quite narrow and has mostly obstructed views--in some places it's single file. This is because of the odd way that the tenders have been mounted.  Overall, the Koningsdam is a great ship and I wouldn't avoid it--just go in knowing some of these issues.

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We were on the Koningsdam in March, loved the ship, dining room food, I found, to be excellent, but I like almost  anything I don't have to cook or clean up.  The Lido was excellent, we had breakfast and lunch here every day, had dinner here a night or two.  Dive in is still my favorite lunch spot and the pizza was excellent.   Had dinner in the Pinnacle Grill, I have always enjoyed this restaurant, but will say I thought the quality has gone downhill, but the Canaleto I found to be excellent, I preferred this restaurant over the Pinnacle Grill.

 

I agree with the other poster who said the casino is so smokey, I never went in due to that reason.  Be aware the smoke from the casino drifts into BBKings hallway.

 

I loved the music walk area, BBKings and The Rock and Roll (I think the Rock and roll band were new as they had some struggles coming together, but improved as the time went on) venues provided some of the best music entertainment

 

All in all we loved the Pinnacle class of ship so much we booked the Nieuw Statendam for 2021.  I hope you enjoy the Koningsdam as we did.

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2 hours ago, Mandalay1903 said:

The Koningsdam is beautiful--Music Walk is great with the shared, larger venue for BB King and Lincoln Center.  The biggest problem (IMO) is that with this new Pinnacle Class ship they've added about 500 guests onto a ship with public spaces about the same size as the Eurodam. Therefore, everything is much more crowded--especially the World Stage, Music Walk, and the Casino. Plan to arrive at least 1/2 hour early to get a seat in the World Stage for a popular performance (e.g. dance company or America's Test Kitchen). Also, the Casino allows smoking so if you're a non-smoker... The third problem is that the Promenade Deck outside walkway is quite narrow and has mostly obstructed views--in some places it's single file. This is because of the odd way that the tenders have been mounted.  Overall, the Koningsdam is a great ship and I wouldn't avoid it--just go in knowing some of these issues.

Thank you for all the advice. You make a great point... we usually enjoy a trip more if we know about issues/concerns in advance so that we have realistic expectations. We are sensitive to cigarette smoke so we've never been able to develop an affinity for casinos ... think of all the money we've saved 😂. I like good evening shows but this next cruise is very port heavy in Europe so maybe we'll just try attend one or two evenings since we'll probably be tired from our daytime adventures and thanks to your advice we'll be sure to arrive very early those few times we try to catch a show. Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts! I appreciate it.

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1 hour ago, doone said:

We were on the Koningsdam in March, loved the ship, dining room food, I found, to be excellent, but I like almost  anything I don't have to cook or clean up.  The Lido was excellent, we had breakfast and lunch here every day, had dinner here a night or two.  Dive in is still my favorite lunch spot and the pizza was excellent.   Had dinner in the Pinnacle Grill, I have always enjoyed this restaurant, but will say I thought the quality has gone downhill, but the Canaleto I found to be excellent, I preferred this restaurant over the Pinnacle Grill.

 

I agree with the other poster who said the casino is so smokey, I never went in due to that reason.  Be aware the smoke from the casino drifts into BBKings hallway.

 

I loved the music walk area, BBKings and The Rock and Roll (I think the Rock and roll band were new as they had some struggles coming together, but improved as the time went on) venues provided some of the best music entertainment

 

All in all we loved the Pinnacle class of ship so much we booked the Nieuw Statendam for 2021.  I hope you enjoy the Koningsdam as we did.

Thank you so much for your recommendations. I really appreciate your taking the time to share your experiences me. We've never tried Canaletto but are going to check it out. We're looking forward to the music walk area which sounds really appealing and will stay away from the smokey casino.

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3 hours ago, Mandalay1903 said:

The Koningsdam is beautiful--Music Walk is great with the shared, larger venue for BB King and Lincoln Center.  The biggest problem (IMO) is that with this new Pinnacle Class ship they've added about 500 guests onto a ship with public spaces about the same size as the Eurodam. Therefore, everything is much more crowded--especially the World Stage, Music Walk, and the Casino. Plan to arrive at least 1/2 hour early to get a seat in the World Stage for a popular performance (e.g. dance company or America's Test Kitchen). Also, the Casino allows smoking so if you're a non-smoker... The third problem is that the Promenade Deck outside walkway is quite narrow and has mostly obstructed views--in some places it's single file. This is because of the odd way that the tenders have been mounted.  Overall, the Koningsdam is a great ship and I wouldn't avoid it--just go in knowing some of these issues.

 

59 minutes ago, suzannecruisecritic said:

Thank you so much for your recommendations. I really appreciate your taking the time to share your experiences me. We've never tried Canaletto but are going to check it out. We're looking forward to the music walk area which sounds really appealing and will stay away from the smokey casino.

 

3 hours ago, Mandalay1903 said:

The Koningsdam is beautiful--Music Walk is great with the shared, larger venue for BB King and Lincoln Center.  The biggest problem (IMO) is that with this new Pinnacle Class ship they've added about 500 guests onto a ship with public spaces about the same size as the Eurodam. Therefore, everything is much more crowded--especially the World Stage, Music Walk, and the Casino. Plan to arrive at least 1/2 hour early to get a seat in the World Stage for a popular performance (e.g. dance company or America's Test Kitchen). Also, the Casino allows smoking so if you're a non-smoker... The third problem is that the Promenade Deck outside walkway is quite narrow and has mostly obstructed views--in some places it's single file. This is because of the odd way that the tenders have been mounted.  Overall, the Koningsdam is a great ship and I wouldn't avoid it--just go in knowing some of these issues.

Agree with all of the above.  Too many guests for the public spaces.  The Lido and MDR are so busy. The promenade is very disappointing.  Seems to be a bit less  staff , therefore especially breakfast was challenging to say the least.  Food was very good.  Think we would go back to Vista Class

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We did the transatlantic in April and had a great time.  We never waited long in line for the main dining room for open dining.  We had a fantastic meal in the Pinnacle, two great meals in Tamarind (still our favourite) and also a good family meal in Canaletto.

 

Sel de mere gives you such a special and personal experience I would highly recommend this too.

 

On this trip we did not attend the Cellar Masters dinner but on previous cruise it was fantastic.

 

Music Walk was right up our street and well done to the Rolling Stones Rock Room who filled it with energy every night even when you could count on two hands the number of guests in the room.

 

One tip for you, if you are open dining and are offered seating on the upper floor of the dining room I would politely decline.  Fixed dining guests were clearly given preference with table service and we had to flag down a waiter just to get our order in.  I understand the temptation for these waiters who get to know their guests during the trip and no doubt gratuities at the end but at the end of the day we all pay the same for the dinner service.

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2 hours ago, ris_scot said:

We did the transatlantic in April and had a great time.  We never waited long in line for the main dining room for open dining.  We had a fantastic meal in the Pinnacle, two great meals in Tamarind (still our favourite) and also a good family meal in Canaletto.

 

Sel de mere gives you such a special and personal experience I would highly recommend this too.

 

On this trip we did not attend the Cellar Masters dinner but on previous cruise it was fantastic.

 

Music Walk was right up our street and well done to the Rolling Stones Rock Room who filled it with energy every night even when you could count on two hands the number of guests in the room.

 

One tip for you, if you are open dining and are offered seating on the upper floor of the dining room I would politely decline.  Fixed dining guests were clearly given preference with table service and we had to flag down a waiter just to get our order in.  I understand the temptation for these waiters who get to know their guests during the trip and no doubt gratuities at the end but at the end of the day we all pay the same for the dinner service.

Thank you so much for all the tips! I appreciate you taking the time to share this advice. Do you recall from your prior cruises what the Cellar Master Dinner was like and where it might be? It’s offered on our sailing at $69 pp but there’s no description or menu and I couldn’t find much online so it seems a mystery to me for now (maybe I need to learn the secret knock or handshake to get in 😂).  De Librije is also offered twice during our upcoming cruise at $69 pp and I was able to find menus and reviews online so I have a better sense of what that option would be like. 

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16 hours ago, jeda4137 said:

 

 

Agree with all of the above.  Too many guests for the public spaces.  The Lido and MDR are so busy. The promenade is very disappointing.  Seems to be a bit less  staff , therefore especially breakfast was challenging to say the least.  Food was very good.  Think we would go back to Vista Class

 

I agree about public spaces, especially World Stage. Getting a seat there was ridiculous. My next HAL cruise is on Zuiderdam. Looking forward to returning to a Vista.

 

 

14 hours ago, ris_scot said:

We did the transatlantic in April and had a great time.  We never waited long in line for the main dining room for open dining.  We had a fantastic meal in the Pinnacle, two great meals in Tamarind (still our favourite) and also a good family meal in Canaletto.

 

Sel de mere gives you such a special and personal experience I would highly recommend this too.

 

On this trip we did not attend the Cellar Masters dinner but on previous cruise it was fantastic.

 

Music Walk was right up our street and well done to the Rolling Stones Rock Room who filled it with energy every night even when you could count on two hands the number of guests in the room.

 

One tip for you, if you are open dining and are offered seating on the upper floor of the dining room I would politely decline.  Fixed dining guests were clearly given preference with table service and we had to flag down a waiter just to get our order in.  I understand the temptation for these waiters who get to know their guests during the trip and no doubt gratuities at the end but at the end of the day we all pay the same for the dinner service.

 

I'm surprised Rock Room was so sparsely attended. I went down there one night (11:00, late for HAL!) and the area was mobbed. It was so loud, I covered my ears and wriggled through the crowd to get away before I damaged my hearing. 

 

I don't like that they mix open seating passengers with fixed. In fixed dining, there is a cadence or schedule to the meal as waiters are serving starters, then mains, then desserts. Open seating passengers may come in halfway through the fixed pattern. This disrupts the flow of service, as waiters are dealing with multiple courses at once. For passengers used to fixed dining, the main difference is more noise/bustle from the waiters stations and sometimes slower service. Open seating diners arriving in the middle of a fixed service may get overlooked, not so much because of waiters hoping for tips, but because these diners don't fit into the pattern of meals. The waiters don't get a heads-up that extra diners have appeared, so if they're focusing on the regulars, they could miss the extras.  HAL could alleviate this problem by using the upstairs open dining tables for people whose arrival coincides with the fixed times upstairs. 

 

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My son and I were on the last Southern Caribbean cruise in April ...second time on the ship ...loved it .dinners were awesome 

loved Pinnacle and Tamarind 

my son loved the real suchi ...i prefer the lunch version in buffet ...yummy .....I discovered I.m not crazy about raw fish but he loved it ....

breakfadt and lunch outdoors in back pool was wonderful ....have a great time .I loved this ship 

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6 hours ago, 3rdGenCunarder said:

 

I agree about public spaces, especially World Stage. Getting a seat there was ridiculous. My next HAL cruise is on Zuiderdam. Looking forward to returning to a Vista.

 

 

 

I'm surprised Rock Room was so sparsely attended. I went down there one night (11:00, late for HAL!) and the area was mobbed. It was so loud, I covered my ears and wriggled through the crowd to get away before I damaged my hearing. 

 

I don't like that they mix open seating passengers with fixed. In fixed dining, there is a cadence or schedule to the meal as waiters are serving starters, then mains, then desserts. Open seating passengers may come in halfway through the fixed pattern. This disrupts the flow of service, as waiters are dealing with multiple courses at once. For passengers used to fixed dining, the main difference is more noise/bustle from the waiters stations and sometimes slower service. Open seating diners arriving in the middle of a fixed service may get overlooked, not so much because of waiters hoping for tips, but because these diners don't fit into the pattern of meals. The waiters don't get a heads-up that extra diners have appeared, so if they're focusing on the regulars, they could miss the extras.  HAL could alleviate this problem by using the upstairs open dining tables for people whose arrival coincides with the fixed times upstairs. 

 

I would agree with you but our experience was we were seated just as the guests for second fixed dining were arriving in the dining room so we were in the same pattern for the courses. 

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Thank you all so much for all the incredibly helpful input! It seems that the dining and shows can be a challenge. I’m guessing this varies depending on how full the ship is and also on the itinerary too as the more port heavy itineraries might offer less evening entertainment onboard. Did any of you try the pop up dining options; wondering if they’re worth the splurge?

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We were on the Koningsdam for a 22 day transatlantic and med cruise in April. We always love Tamarind and Pinnacle. Sel de Mer is delicious as well. Tip: avoid the pricey al la carte entrees and split the amazing seafood platter for two listed as an appetizer. With salads, it’s a full meal. The last night, Tamarind also had a special Malaysian dinner which was great.

 

Sadly, we’ve never had a good meal in Canaletto. We tried it again on this cruise and were once again disappointed.

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1 minute ago, BarbarianPaul said:

We were on the Koningsdam for a 22 day transatlantic and med cruise in April. We always love Tamarind and Pinnacle. Sel de Mer is delicious as well. Tip: avoid the pricey al la carte entrees and split the amazing seafood platter for two listed as an appetizer. With salads, it’s a full meal. The last night, Tamarind also had a special Malaysian dinner which was great.

 

Sadly, we’ve never had a good meal in Canaletto. We tried it again on this cruise and were once again disappointed.

Thank you for the tips. We’ll have to try the seafood tower! We didn’t try Canaletto on our prior HAL cruise on the NA because it seemed to be in a noisy area of the Lido; do you recall if that was the same on Koningsdam? May skip it again and stuck to the others you recommended. I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts and recommendations 🙂

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1 minute ago, suzannecruisecritic said:

Thank you for the tips. We’ll have to try the seafood tower! We didn’t try Canaletto on our prior HAL cruise on the NA because it seemed to be in a noisy area of the Lido; do you recall if that was the same on Koningsdam? May skip it again and stuck to the others you recommended. I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts and recommendations 🙂

I think Canaletto was in pretty much the same spot as the NA. One pleasant surprise was the new pizza / grilled sandwich place on the deck above the lido, overlooking the midship pool. It’s a fully separate venue now with its own outdoor seating area.

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2 minutes ago, BarbarianPaul said:

I think Canaletto was in pretty much the same spot as the NA. One pleasant surprise was the new pizza / grilled sandwich place on the deck above the lido, overlooking the midship pool. It’s a fully separate venue now with its own outdoor seating area.

 

Yes and Yes.  Highly recommend the pizza. Made to order and customizable. Sometimes undercooked, so ask for it well done. They give you a beeper. It was an excellent light and fresh lunch spot!  You can grab a pre-made salad as an app while you wait (selection of dressing there, too).

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