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An Introduction to the Ships and Classes of the HAL Fleet

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We had a huge AFT balcony on the Carnival Conquest a couple of years ago.

 

I have found that I'm not fond of those MEGA ships. I'm much happier with 1200-1600 fellow passengers.

 

I'd love to book another AFT cabin, but it appears as though I'm out of luck if I want to stick with R or S class in the future?

 

I've got my eye on the Zaandam (?) RT San Diego to Hawaii for our 20th wedding anniversary next December.

 

Any "special" suggestions for cabins not AFT? Thanks. ;)

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Since no one else has posted, I'll offer up some advice:

 

If memory serves me correctly, you prefer the A/AA/B/BB category verandah cabins (which are excellent cabins). On an R-class vessel, like the Zaandam, the "best" of these cabins would be those amidships on the Verandah Deck ... AA6170 - AA6184 on the port side and AA6165 - AA6179 on the starboard side. Being close to the midship's stairs and elevators, this location is fantastic because the Lido is just 2 decks up, while the Upper Promenade Deck and many of the ship's lounges are just one deck down.

 

If you really like being aft or having access to aft views, you might want to note that there are two lovely aft decks (on both the Navigation and Verandah decks) that anyone can use but which most people don't know about. Also, the aft corner AA cabins (on the Navigation Deck) and the B Cabins (on the Verandah Deck) are hc cabins but DO have large corner verandahs.

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Thought you all might enjoy a photo of the ms Prinsendam leaving port in Waremunde, Germany this past September.

What a wonderful ship! I love HAL, especially this ship.

89406247_L9993915_bearbeitet-1_hf(Large).jpg.1e240c91b84653eb7ce79c4bbbae89f3.jpg

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This thread was started about a year ago, with much less known about the Eurodam. Can someone post some updated info about her?

Orcrone:

 

I see that you have sailed on both HAL and Carnival. Do you have a preference? Can you outline some of the pros/cons? We recently sailed Princess and I found that we prefer Carnival for various reasons (cabin size, entertainment options, bathrobes!). Thanks for any info.

 

Mary

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Hello, Mary. I see that you're new here. So, you may not have noticed that this thread was started years ago, and has recently been brought forward.

 

Orcrone hasn't been around much and is not likely to see your post. He was a delightful poster when he was active here, and did contribute a lot. Please don't think he's ignoring you if he doesn't reply.

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Thank you for the great pictures! I heard that the Zuiderdam was going into dry dock to be refurbished next month (April). Does anyone know about that? We're taking cruising on it in the Med. in July. As I look at its history, it hasn't been there yet. So, I'm just wondering about it....... :confused:

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I am confused by the deck plans for the Maasdam: is there a Sky Deck? It isn't shown in the 2008 brochure. It is in the 2007 brochure but with an asterisk on the "Oasis" saying that the Oasis is only on the Veendam. But does that mean the deck isn't accessible at all, or just doesn't feature the Oasis?

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Does the Zuiderdam have a launderette?

There are no self-service laundries on any of the Vista class ships. Nor will there be any on the Signature class ships.

The S- and R-class ships have self-service laundries at a cost of $2.00 for the washer, and $1.00 for the dryer. The Prinsendam laundries are included in the fare.

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Am trying to learn all about Oosterdam. Would VB4178 or 4183 aft be good staterooms to book? Is the balcony partially covered? Thanks all.

ps If anyone has any stateroom suggestions let me know. We do want a balcony.

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Am trying to learn all about Oosterdam. Would VB4178 or 4183 aft be good staterooms to book? Is the balcony partially covered? Thanks all.

ps If anyone has any stateroom suggestions let me know. We do want a balcony.

 

You might have better luck getting responses to this inquiry if you post it as a new thread rather than at the tail end of this one. Short answer: those are both good staterooms, with deeper balconies than the VB cabins on the side, and wonderful aft views. However, there is not much cover on them.

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Great thread! Thanks so much to all.

 

Does anyone know what the April 2009 changes to the Oosterdam actually are? (Deck plans are posted on HAL for both up to early April 2009 and then a different set after late April 2009, suggesting a 3-week renovation of some sort.)

 

I'm especially interested in revisions of the aft VAs, about which I've read conflicting posts -- some indicating that the balconies there will be extended a bit (enlarged); others stating just the opposite (that the currently deeper balconies there will be shortened to conform to the side balconies).

 

We booked an AFT VA on Oosterdam for a May 2009 sailing -- and are hoping that it will indeed be the extended one. If not, what WILL be at the end of these aft decks? :confused:

 

Thanks for any input,

Mary-Lou (& Dave)

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Does anyone know what the April 2009 changes to the Oosterdam actually are? (Deck plans are posted on HAL for both up to early April 2009 and then a different set after late April 2009, suggesting a 3-week renovation of some sort.)

 

I'm especially interested in revisions of the aft VAs, about which I've read conflicting posts -- some indicating that the balconies there will be extended a bit (enlarged); others stating just the opposite (that the currently deeper balconies there will be shortened to conform to the side balconies)

The changes to the stern will be just the same as were done for the Zuiderdam this year and the Westerdam last year. Deck 4 remains unchanged, so it will still have the very large, exposed verandahs. The size of the deck 5 verandahs will not change, but they will be completely covered (except for maybe a foot) because deck 6 will be extended such that its railing will be almost directly above deck 5's railing. Decks 7, 8, & 9 will also be extended. In this process, all of the verandahs on 6, 7, and 8 get considerably shortened, but not quite as short as the side balconies. :)

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The changes to the stern will be just the same as were done for the Zuiderdam this year and the Westerdam last year. Deck 4 remains unchanged, so it will still have the very large, exposed verandahs. The size of the deck 5 verandahs will not change, but they will be completely covered (except for maybe a foot) because deck 6 will be extended such that its railing will be almost directly above deck 5's railing. Decks 7, 8, & 9 will also be extended. In this process, all of the verandahs on 6, 7, and 8 get considerably shortened, but not quite as short as the side balconies. :)

 

THANKS SO MUCH, jtl513!

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Nice photo, JP...I see this one in our future!!;)

 

 

Good to hear from you Alcirita:) It has been a while!;)

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That's a lovely photo, John. Despite her rear end (and we can't all have attractive rear ends!), I still like her and am really looking forward to our cruise.

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PRINSENDAM - Built 1988 - 37,983 Gross Tons - 793 passengers

 

The smallest and oldest HAL ship, she is in a class by herself. She generally does the longest and most expensive cruises. She is the only HAL ship not built for the line, she was built in 1988 as the ROYAL VIKING SUN, became SEABOURN SUN in 2000 and then PRINSENDAM in 2002. Among things that separate her from the rest of the HAL ships - she does not have a two-deck dining room or main lounge, an indoor/outdoor pool, or dedicated children's facilities. Her smaller, more intimate size and off-the-beaten path itineraries are appreciated by her increasingly loyal following.

Is the Prinsendam essentially the same ship as the former Renaissance vessels that currently sail for Oceania, Azamara & Princess? They all seem to be smaller, more intimate & classic ships. Are there any real differences? Many thanks.

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What a very helpful thread! I have found the HAL site a bit difficult to use. Am considering a HAL cruise in the fall on the Canada-New England itinerary as Celebrity no longer does the interesting itinerary including a cruise of the Saguenay Fjord. Thanks to all who have contributed!

 

I would like to make a contribution too. We were parked behind the Westerdam in Ft. Lauderdale last February and I have a good shot of the rear of the ship. I've never been able to figure out how to post large photos. A thumbnail wouldn't be of much use to anyone. If someone can advise me how to post a large photo, I'll be happy to put it up.

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What a very helpful thread! I have found the HAL site a bit difficult to use. Am considering a HAL cruise in the fall on the Canada-New England itinerary as Celebrity no longer does the interesting itinerary including a cruise of the Saguenay Fjord. Thanks to all who have contributed!

 

I would like to make a contribution too. We were parked behind the Westerdam in Ft. Lauderdale last February and I have a good shot of the rear of the ship. I've never been able to figure out how to post large photos. A thumbnail wouldn't be of much use to anyone. If someone can advise me how to post a large photo, I'll be happy to put it up.

 

Hi Happy

 

First save your photo on your own PC in a folder, then use a site like Photobucket (it's free, just register) and save it there. Once saved there, open up that pic, use the copy function (right click on your mouse), open up a new post in this thread, add some text (it wont take just a photo by itself), use the paste function (right click on your mouse again) and you should be done! Good luck and thanks for your service!!!

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Is the Prinsendam essentially the same ship as the former Renaissance vessels that currently sail for Oceania, Azamara & Princess? They all seem to be smaller, more intimate & classic ships. Are there any real differences? Many thanks.

 

No, the Prinsendam is not one of the R-boats, nor was it a first generation Renaissance ship. It was built as the Royal Viking Sun, for the Royal Viking line, which was absorbed by Carnival Corp. It is somewhat older than the R-boats.

 

It happens to be our favorite. We've taken cruises on HAL's R-class and S-class ships, for itinerary, but rather watch where Prinsendam is going, and book that ship again, paying a substantial premium to do so. It you sail on Prinsendam, you will likely discover that the majority of your fellow passengers are repeaters. On our previous cruise, one of our fellow passengers had been on Prinsendam for more than two years, and was debarking only because she forced to, by the ship going into drydock.

 

addendum: Carnival Corp first put the Royal Viking Sun to use under the Seabourne brand. They apparently decided it was too big for the Seabourne style, so the next likely place was HAL, although the rest of HAL's ships were quite a bit bigger.

Edited by OKTraveler

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rotterdam_1959_1.jpg

 

ss Rotterdam V (1959-present) Built in 1959 as ss Rotterdam by the Rotterdamsche Droogdok Maatschappij (Rotterdam Drydock Company), Rotterdam, the Netherlands for the Holland Amerika Lijn/Holland America Line for which she would become their very popular flagship. At 748 feet long, 94 feet wide and weighing 38,650 tons, she would be the largest ship ever built in the Netherlands and she would sail for HAL for 39 years!

 

She was the fifth ship in the line's history to bear the name of Rotterdam, the principal city in the Dutch province of Zuid (South) Holland, second largest municipality in the Netherlands and the largest port in Europe. The name 'Rotterdam' originally comes from a dam built on the river Rotte.

 

On 13 September 1958, Rotterdam V was launched by her godmother, HRH Queen Juliana of The Netherlands. Upon the completion of succesful sea trials, she set out on her maiden voyage from Rotterdam to New York, via Le Havre, France and Southampton, England, on 3 September 1959, arriving in New York on 11 September. One of her passengers was the then Crown Princess of The Netherlands, Princess, now Queen, Beatrix.

 

She then departed New York on her first cruise on 11 December, 1959, a 49-day cruise circumnavigating South America. She would make her first world cruise in 1961, a seventy seven-day roundtrip from New York. In 1969, Rotterdam made her last regularly scheduled transatlantic crossing and was converted to a one-class cruise ship. She would, however, make four more world cruises in 1993, 1995, 1996, and 1997.

 

rotterdam_1959_3.jpg

 

From September until October 1989, she received a $15 million dollar (mostly interior) refit at a Portland, Oregon shipyard. On 31 January 1996, HAL announced that the much loved ship would be taken out of service as of 30 September 1997. The reason given by her owners (later disputed) was the new SOLAS (Safety Of Life At Sea) requirements coming into effect and the funds, supposedly U.S. 40 million, required to update the thirty-eight year old vessel. Rotterdam would make a farewell cruise at the end of her Alaska season from Vancouver, BC to Ft Lauderdale, Fl.

 

In October 1997, she was purchased by Premier Cruises who had her upgraded to SOLAS standards and renamed Rembrandt. Premier kept her classic ocean liner 'feel' and on 21 December 1997, she departed on her first cruise to South America. The summer of 1998 found her cruising in the Mediterranean. Premier however, also had grandiose plans to rename the ship 'Big Red Boat IV' and to paint her hull a bright red, an idea not very popular with her fans. As Big Red Boat IV she would sail out of Los Angeles on three and four-day party cruises to Mexico in the winter and out of Vancouver, BC on seven-day Alaska cruises in the summer.

 

As faith would have it, Premier Cruise Line ran into financial difficulties. On 13 September, 2000 during a northbound New England/Canada cruise, her captain was ordered to return his ship to Halifax, Nova Scotia. After off-loading her passengers, the ss Rembrandt was placed under arrest. As a special condition of her warrants, she was allowed to depart for Freeport, the Bahamas where she arrived on 30 December 2000 and was laid-up pending sale. Premier Cruise Lines filed for bankruptcy and went out of business.

 

Ship+Photo+Rembrandt.jpg

 

On 7 May 2003 Rembrandt became the property of s.s. Rotterdam BV (part of RDM holding or Rotterdamse Droogdok Maatschappij, her original builders). On 17 June 2004, the Polish ocean-going tug 'Englishman' towed her from the Bahamas to the Camell Laird yard at Gibraltar where she arrived on 12 July 2004 and where renovation work was scheduled for her. She would remain docked at the British Crown Colony until October 2005 (see below). By that time, she also had new owner, 'Rederij De Rotterdam BV'.

 

rotterdam_1959_5.jpg

 

On 25 October 2005, after a tow from Gibraltar by the Spanish tug 'V B Artico', she arrived at Cadiz, Spain, for additional (dry) dock maintenance including the repainting of her hull in her original light gray color. In addition, she was renamed Rotterdam and registered in the same city. 'V B Artico' would tow her again, this time from 10 to 27 February 2006, from Cadiz to Gdansk, Poland where her asbestos was removed and further renovating would take place (see below).

 

rotterdam_1959_9.jpg

 

On 25 August 2006 she received yet another tow, this time to Wilhelmshaven, Germany (see below) where she stayed until August 2008 for additional exterior restoration work.

 

rotterdam_1959_14.jpg

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