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Marie-Claude

What's new on the Rotterdam

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After doing about 30 cruises, I had to take a break from cruising (work and family) and I haven't been on a ship since 2013. But I'm back! I will be accompanying a group on the Rotterdam on June 27, 2020. My last cruise on the Rotterdam was in 2005... so 15 years later, I'm sure much has changed! I know the ship was refurbished in 2017, but 3 years can be long for a ship - is the Rotterdam still in good shape?

What are the new 'must see, must do'?

 

 

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On 8/3/2019 at 9:39 AM, Marie-Claude said:

After doing about 30 cruises, I had to take a break from cruising (work and family) and I haven't been on a ship since 2013. But I'm back! I will be accompanying a group on the Rotterdam on June 27, 2020. My last cruise on the Rotterdam was in 2005... so 15 years later, I'm sure much has changed! I know the ship was refurbished in 2017, but 3 years can be long for a ship - is the Rotterdam still in good shape?

What are the new 'must see, must do'?

 

 

here is my recent youtube video on our two week cruise on the Rotterdam in March, 2019. You can judge for yourself!:) I hope you enjoy it!

 

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Posted (edited)

We were just on the Rotterdam last month for a Baltics cruise, and had a great time. It was our 1st time on the Rotterdam (been on the Vista class ships mostly), and we really enjoyed her (even) smaller size. The latest upgrade HAL has made is the Lincoln Center Stage, which we found we really liked - maybe bc the talented musicians did not just classical music but also modern/pop/rock/jazz songs, so it was lovely see that live. They had an almost-full house for most of their performances. There is also still a full library on this ship, which was nice to have on the sea days especially.

The only place we noticed any "wear and tear" was in our inside cabin - specifically we had a water leakage issue. We woke up one morning to wet carpets along the edges of the cabin! HAL couldn't figure what was causing the issue, but they had a full team of people trying to fix it. They handled the situation very well and thankfully it was near the end of the trip so it only affected the last 2 days for us. 

We had an excellent trip overall, and would definitely sail on the smaller HAL ships again.

 

(Edit: forgot to mention the Caneletto restaurant onboard! this was our 1st time trying it after the recent menu change, and we thought it was really excellent. chicken parm sunday night special was delicious, as was the lobster ravioli! not sure if the food is consistently delicious in all the canelettos aboard the other HAL ships, but we loved it on the Rotterdam)

 

Edited by BVsmurfette

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2 hours ago, BVsmurfette said:

We were just on the Rotterdam last month for a Baltics cruise, and had a great time. It was our 1st time on the Rotterdam (been on the Vista class ships mostly), and we really enjoyed her (even) smaller size. The latest upgrade HAL has made is the Lincoln Center Stage, which we found we really liked - maybe bc the talented musicians did not just classical music but also modern/pop/rock/jazz songs, so it was lovely see that live. They had an almost-full house for most of their performances. There is also still a full library on this ship, which was nice to have on the sea days especially.

The only place we noticed any "wear and tear" was in our inside cabin - specifically we had a water leakage issue. We woke up one morning to wet carpets along the edges of the cabin! HAL couldn't figure what was causing the issue, but they had a full team of people trying to fix it. They handled the situation very well and thankfully it was near the end of the trip so it only affected the last 2 days for us. 

We had an excellent trip overall, and would definitely sail on the smaller HAL ships again.

 

(Edit: forgot to mention the Caneletto restaurant onboard! this was our 1st time trying it after the recent menu change, and we thought it was really excellent. chicken parm sunday night special was delicious, as was the lobster ravioli! not sure if the food is consistently delicious in all the canelettos aboard the other HAL ships, but we loved it on the Rotterdam)

 

On your recent Rotterdam cruise, did they still have the "Mix" area with the single piano bar, or have they ripped that out and installed Billboard Onboard ?   

We are booked on a 29 day trans-atlantic on Oct 3, 2020.  The "HAL ships at a Glance" chart shows that Lincoln Center Stage was added in a drydock on May 11, 2019, and they plan the add Billboard Onboard in another drydock on Dec 6, 2019.   I can't imagine any cruise line taking a ship out of service 2 times in the same year.   

We really enjoy the intimacy of the single piano bar with a talented musician, over the commercialized dueling piano concept of Billboard.

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No dueling pianos on the Rotterdam when we were on her last month!  Also no BB Kings if you were wondering about that.

The "Mix" area was still intact, though I don't remember what specific entertainment they had there. 

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7 minutes ago, BVsmurfette said:

No dueling pianos on the Rotterdam when we were on her last month!  Also no BB Kings if you were wondering about that.

The "Mix" area was still intact, though I don't remember what specific entertainment they had there. 

Thanks for the info.   I checked the HAL website and they show the Rotterdam doing a Pacific coast and Panama Canal cruise in December 2019.   I checked another site that has ship's calendars and I see a continuous series of cruises from August 2019 through November 2020, with no breaks.   Ripping out the "Mix" area, the bars, and some of the shops in that area would take at least 2 weeks in a wet dock.   So, I don't understand their schedule showing Billboard Onboard being effective on Dec 6, 2019.   Chart attached as a PDF.

HAL_Ships_at_a_Glance_Chart_080419.pdf

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We sailed Rotterdam  April 2019 7 night Western Caribbean . The ship was in great condition ,food & service were tops 

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Thanks everyone - very helpful!

 

One more question - last time I was there, we could borrow an I-Pod for a tour of all the pieces of art around the ship. I-Pod are antiquated now... so I'm wondering if the tour is still available maybe from an App??

It was really interesting to get a commentary on the various artwork found around the ship!

Thanks in avance!

MC

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2 hours ago, Marie-Claude said:

Thanks everyone - very helpful!

 

One more question - last time I was there, we could borrow an I-Pod for a tour of all the pieces of art around the ship. I-Pod are antiquated now... so I'm wondering if the tour is still available maybe from an App??

It was really interesting to get a commentary on the various artwork found around the ship!

Thanks in avance!

MC

 

The art tours seemed to have disappeared sadly.  

 

there used to be an app that you could download to your Ipod/phone/whatever but they seem to have disappeared from the Itunes site.

 

Nothing on the HAL site.  Last time we were on board, there were still some ipods to do the art tour but that ship is a tad different from the rest of the fleet.  I hope they are still available as I find it a nice way to really experience the art on the ships with the great art.  (I know, beauty is in the eye of the beholder and so is great art 😉

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4 minutes ago, kazu said:

 

The art tours seemed to have disappeared sadly.  

Sad indeed... it was a nice thing to do on a day at sea... not very demanding for them, and it just creates more appeal for the ship and its amenities... oh well!

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Hi,

we are just on the Rotterdam. It is an old ship now with some wear. It is a classic ocean liner and totally different from the Koningsdam we cruised last June.

Although the ship needs some refurbishment we would call it patina. It us very charming.

 

One thing that has changed a few weeks ago: the bar menus no longer show mocktails and smoothies anymore. As we used this a lot and as we booked a QBP

we were shocked.

 

So we talked to the assistant beverage manager. He told us the mocktails and smoothies are still available, but no longer shown in the bar menus. He showed us an old bar menu which had the mocktails and smoothies in it and we made a picture of it.

 

We cannot explain the reason behind this and we didn‘t ask. We cannot imagine any good reason to do this. Another thing that isn‘t consistent in the HAL fleet is alcohol free beer. On the Koningsdam we were told it is not covered by the QBP, but on the Rotterdam it is covered.

 

I guess this is all part of the „Discover the ships specialties“ game;-)

 

regards

MBerry

 

 

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Does anyone know if the Rotterdam has the on demand movies in the staterooms, as other ships do? Thanks in advance. 

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8 hours ago, MouseBerry said:

I guess this is all part of the „Discover the ships specialties“ game;-)

Hey, we need something to make up for the lack of entertainment.

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We were on the Rotterdam in February and we were able to get a device from the front desk for an art tour, which I really enjoyed. I think the device was an iPod, I can’t quite remember. 

 

Our room had some wear and tear on the walls near the bathroom - they were soggy somehow. Honestly, I didn’t even notice until a few days in, I was having such a good time. And I did notice rooms on the other side were having some problems, with fans, etc. Our ocean view room was far aft. There seemed to be a leak on the promenade deck that never quite got fixed as it was always quite wet. 

 

However, I loved the cruise - a very happy atmosphere, great service overall, excellent food and service in the MDR, and great entertainment in the lobby bar for a drink before dinner (which I love). I would definitely sail on that ship again. 

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