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RevNeal

RevNeal's LIVE Eurodam Report

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Greg, fabulous photos. May I ask a question about your SP570? I've been reading about problems w/ the outer edges fading out at full 20x zoom. Have you found that to be the case? For that reason, I was considering replacing my old Olympus w/ the SP 560 w/ an 18x zoon.

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I just LOVE the colors in the silk den! I would be there a LOT I think.

 

Great pictures, Greg!

 

Before I saw the comments about the atrium, I thought about a pile of you know whats :(

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RevNeal .. your pictures are superb .. I cannot wait to see the ports etc.

 

Something about the decor on this ship seems cold .. There is no opulent feeling to things. The tamarind is exactly what one would want in an Asian Restaurant . nicely done and the Silk Den is lovely too .. but so many of the lounges and public spaces seemed furnished like a nice doctors office waiting room. And what were they thinking with the Pinnacle Lounge and the Atruim abomination.

 

It seems to me a constrast to what I have seen on HAL .. perhaps I am remembering wrong .. off to look at our pictures

 

But in any event .. MANY MANY THANKS for all your hard work.. It is obvious that it is a labor of love.

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RevNeal, thank you for all of your time you spend posting these pics for us.

 

You have captured the ambiance of each of the public areas. The only one I truly do not care for is the erector set. IMO this looks like it belongs in a cafe at an amusement park.

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Some of the other things strike me as design missteps (e.g., the Pinnacle Bar chairs), but ok, tastes differ, and if you're into high-tech industrial modern, maybe they'd be up your alley.

 

I learned that the Pinnacle Bar was the one room designed by an Italian who works at the shipyards, and was his first design project for a shipboard public room...

...I hope it's his last room too.

 

BTW - Greg, your photo gallery has a couple errors:

 

The model displayed in the Meet & Greet area is not the 1957 Statendam(IV)...

...but the 1952 Ryndam(II)/Maasdam(IV) "Economy Twins".

 

Capt Card's painting of Rotterdam is not #III but #IV

 

And the desks in the Verandah Cabins are the exact same size as those in your Cat G stateroom.

(Joyce's VT just had more "Spa Junk" piled on it)

;)

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Congratulations on some great pics Greg.......they are masterly and represent time so well spent. Thanks once again.

 

Paul

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RevNeal .. your pictures are superb .. I cannot wait to see the ports etc.

 

Something about the decor on this ship seems cold .. There is no opulent feeling to things. The tamarind is exactly what one would want in an Asian Restaurant . nicely done and the Silk Den is lovely too .. but so many of the lounges and public spaces seemed furnished like a nice doctors office waiting room. And what were they thinking with the Pinnacle Lounge and the Atruim abomination.

 

 

My thoughts exactly -- very cold and seemingly ultra contemporary -- almost too contemporary for my taste. I DO like the appearance of the Pinnacle Grille, though.

 

Thanks for sharing all your photos, RevNeal -- they really give me a good feel for the ship. BTW, is it me or, for such a large ship, why does everything feel so small?

Tracy

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Greg, fabulous photos. May I ask a question about your SP570? I've been reading about problems w/ the outer edges fading out at full 20x zoom. Have you found that to be the case? For that reason, I was considering replacing my old Olympus w/ the SP 560 w/ an 18x zoon.

 

I've found the 570 to be a good performer. The edge fading at 20x zoom is there, but if your focus is the middle of the image you can always crop out the edge.

 

You can't go wrong with either camera, however. Be advised, though, that in both cases the automatic setting for exposure doesn't always produce the best results. I took most of my photos with the exposure set to manuel (200 for outdoors, 400 for indoors normal 800 for low light levels ... the photos of the Tamarind were taken in near-dark at 800 ISP).

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The Eurodam is NOT nicely furnished. Like a doctor's office sums it up well. I compare the furnishings on the Eurodam to say the Rotterdam and there is a world of difference. Eurodam is too big, too crowded, and tastelessly furnished. Poor service also. That sums it up IMO.

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The Eurodam is NOT nicely furnished. Like a doctor's office sums it up well. I compare the furnishings on the Eurodam to say the Rotterdam and there is a world of difference. Eurodam is too big, too crowded, and tastelessly furnished. Poor service also. That sums it up IMO.
But you know, I don't think the decor will ruin my cruise on her. Maybe other things will annoy me, but that is to be seen. I have had over the years bad service, bad food, bad seas, bad passengers, but never a bad cruise.

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The Eurodam is NOT nicely furnished. Like a doctor's office sums it up well. I compare the furnishings on the Eurodam to say the Rotterdam and there is a world of difference. Eurodam is too big, too crowded, and tastelessly furnished. Poor service also. That sums it up IMO.

 

Depends upon the lounge you're talking about, Adele. In the Ocean bar there are some very nice chairs and couches ... but, again, there are also some stinkers. In the Pinnacle Grill (not Bar) there are some very nice "comfy chairs." The Explorers Lounge and Bar has some of the best decor on the ship ... its' the most "HAL" of all the lounges aboard the ship, even though it lacks the Explorers Lounge's "signature" painting. The crows nest has some nice furnishings, too. However, I agree that the ship is too big and too crowded and the lack of sufficient staff for the number of passengers has resulted is service being spotty, at best. Proof of this? As I say in my letter to HAL-HQ, you can tell something is seriously wrong when the level of service in the main dining room approaches pre-2000 norms ONLY when the dining room is about half-full. In my opinion, the best service in the main dining room, all cruise, was the evening we were in Germany and a huge percentage of the ship was off.

 

Oh, and don't forget the Tamarind ... the service there put the rest of the ship to shame.

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Greg,

Do you think the structural issues so impact the overall enjoyment of the ship that those of us who are booked on her later this year and next will be sorely disappointed? I'm asking because those of you whose opinions that I respect seem to be disappointed in E'dam. Appraising individual issues aside, I'm looking for a general feel; are you disappointed?

 

I know decor and service problems can be corrected. The kids issue could and does happen on any ship, HAL or otherwise, and it's too maddening for me to even consider in this post.

 

Correct me if I am wrong, but weren't you also on the Noordam's inaugural cruise? If so, were there similar issues to a greater or lesser degree? And also, do you think the inaugural cruise being in Europe impacted the experience overall?

 

Thanks for considering my questions. As with you, cruises are important to me and I spend a lot of time looking forward to them.

Myra

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After perusing your photos, Greg, my vote goes for the Explorer's Lounge as my top pick on the Eurodam, followed by the Tamarind and Silk Den.

Thank you again for taking us along. You have a great eye!

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But you know, I don't think the decor will ruin my cruise on her. Maybe other things will annoy me, but that is to be seen. I have had over the years bad service, bad food, bad seas, bad passengers, but never a bad cruise.

Hi:

If you have had bad service, bad food, bad seas & bad passengers (cruising) over the years, what, in fact, would you consider to be a bad cruise???

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and the desks in the Verandah Cabins are the exact same size as those in your Cat G stateroom.

(Joyce's VT just had more "Spa Junk" piled on it)

;)

 

If there had been a place to 'hide' all of that spa junk I would have done it. I turned the fountain off after 10 minutes. I kept getting the urge to visit the bathroom when it was running.

 

I don't own an Ipod so the Bose system was wasted on me and those free vitamin waters were loaded with calories. I wish the Voss water was free. That, I would have used.

 

Once I moved (read that as pushed) all of the non essential stuff off to the side I had plenty of room for my stuff on the vanity/desk. If there had been two of us in the cabin it would have been a problem.

 

All in all, I loved my cabin, 11006. Its proximity to the Crow's Nest and Explorations area was wonderful. Even though my 'Juliette' balcony was small I did enjoy standing out there and breathing in the sea air and enjoying the sights. I can't complain. After all, it was an 8 category upgrade from what I had booked.

 

I actually liked the ship and would sail on her again. Especially if all of my 'maties' were on board. ;)

 

Joyce -- The Countdown Kid

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Greg,

Do you think the structural issues so impact the overall enjoyment of the ship that those of us who are booked on her later this year and next will be sorely disappointed? I'm asking because those of you whose opinions that I respect seem to be disappointed in E'dam. Appraising individual issues aside, I'm looking for a general feel; are you disappointed?

 

I know decor and service problems can be corrected. The kids issue could and does happen on any ship, HAL or otherwise, and it's too maddening for me to even consider in this post.

 

Correct me if I am wrong, but weren't you also on the Noordam's inaugural cruise? If so, were there similar issues to a greater or lesser degree? And also, do you think the inaugural cruise being in Europe impacted the experience overall?

 

Thanks for considering my questions. As with you, cruises are important to me and I spend a lot of time looking forward to them.

Myra

 

Myra--

 

I hope you won't mind me adding my two Euros worth...

 

...but the Noordam inaugural had nothing like the problems we saw on Eurodam. Although the dining service on the Noordam inaugural wasn't always up to par, everywhere else the service and attention to detail was outstanding aboard Noordam. Bear in mind that I was only in an SS on Noordam but an SC on Eurodam - and thank goodness or I wouldn't have been able to get anything done without the lovely ladies in the Neptune.

 

I think that being in Europe had little to do with the poor service and dismal organization of the dining room and our ignored dining requests. IMO, this had everything to do to with Seattle mismanagement as well as Stein Kruse and Micky Arison being aboard and greatly monopolizing many service staff to the detriment of the paying passengers, the outrageous numbers of invited guests being aboard, the excessive numbers of passengers that HAL has designed into the ship by the 100 additional staterooms vs. the diminished size of the public areas.

 

Compared to similar itineraries aboard other HAL ships, we all paid double the going rate to be on this ship for the Prelude and Inaugural, but we received nowhere near double the service or attention to detail.

 

In addition, being ignored by Stein Kruse and Micky Arison who never once approached anyone - even in the Neptune Lounge - to say "Hello" or thank us for being there, but instead took over the ship and it's staff as if it were their personal yacht for those three days as well as us being required to pay additional for Bill Prince's pathetically orchestrated Christening ceremony was as good as a slap in the face. Even senior staff aboard (who shall go unnamed) expressed absolute relief when Stein and Micky finally left in Copenhagen.

 

The sad thing is, Seattle and Stein Kruse had so many opportunities to do it right and truly create a premium experience - from the basic ship design and interior decor to how dining arrangements were handled, the way the Christening was organized, how the staff functioned and how problems were dealt with and resolved - even to how they track Mariner Days - but they failed repeatedly and in so many respects that it fairly overshadowed the things they did get right. Frankly, I believe it was the good management of the Captain and HM that many of the crew did have good attitudes and did manage to eventually resolve issues and fulfill requests (that weren't hampered by Seattle) as well as they did.

 

I certainly do appreciate the nice bottles of Champagne, the excellent Meet and Greet, the nice VIP parties and souvenirs and I was thrilled to see my friends again, including Jeroen and Pam - but it just doesn't make up for the faults because IMO, for the premium we paid we should have received absolutely stellar service and perfectly-organized dining arrangements as requested - at least what we enjoyed aboard Noordam.

 

Unless there are some dramatic changes to HAL/Seattle Senior Management in the next year or so, I simply won't do another HAL Inaugural - I'd rather pay more and get a lower-category stateroom for the much more significant Queen Elizabeth inaugural.

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Rev Neal, Thank you for taking the time to post your travels and pics...I have enjoyed logging on and reading your posts and enjoying your pics these past several weeks. I know that you have spent a great deal of time and effort on your posts..just want you to know that I appreciate your efforts.:D

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If there had been a place to 'hide' all of that spa junk I would have done it. I turned the fountain off after 10 minutes. I kept getting the urge to visit the bathroom when it was running.

 

I don't own an Ipod so the Bose system was wasted on me and those free vitamin waters were loaded with calories. I wish the Voss water was free. That, I would have used.

 

Once I moved (read that as pushed) all of the non essential stuff off to the side I had plenty of room for my stuff on the vanity/desk. If there had been two of us in the cabin it would have been a problem.

 

All in all, I loved my cabin, 11006. Its proximity to the Crow's Nest and Explorations area was wonderful. Even though my 'Juliette' balcony was small I did enjoy standing out there and breathing in the sea air and enjoying the sights. I can't complain. After all, it was an 8 category upgrade from what I had booked.

 

I actually liked the ship and would sail on her again. Especially if all of my 'maties' were on board. ;)

 

Joyce -- The Countdown Kid

 

 

Hey Joyce, it was nice meeting you on Eurodam! ;)

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Very Well said, Brian!!!!!!!! I agree with EVERY word. As you know, I have written Seattle a very, very long letter stating my disappointment with my Eurodam cruise. I have 610 days on Hal and have been sailing with Hal since 1962. This was , by far, my worst cruise ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Will let you know if Hal even responds to my letter. Not holding my breath. I am gold on Cunard, which is less cruises and days than gold on Hal. I get so many more perks with them and the service, even in Hal's best days has been far superior. I may be switching to Cunard. We can always sail with the gang on Cunard!!!!

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Hey Joyce, it was nice meeting you on Eurodam! ;)

 

Great meeting you and your child bride as well. Hope we sail together again soon.

 

Speaking of which, I'm on the 9/17/08 sailing of the Rotterdam and booked the 8/23/09 Prinsendam sailing while on board the Eurodam. Maybe you and Maria would like to join in on the fun.

 

Joyce

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Sadly, there is almost no cruise line that will turn away families with kids. They are the future of every single cruise line.

 

There were lots of people who cruised at one time and didn't care for children. The cruise lines honored their wishes because they were plentiful and were keeping the ships full. They paid top dollar for their cruises at a time when cruises were far more expensive than they are today. Well, sadly those people today are dying off ... or they are no longer cruising because of various disabilities. If the cruise lines want to survive, they need to replace these passengers with younger ones. Those younger passengers all have kids. Either the kids sail too, or the parents don't ... it's as simple as that. If the cruise lines don't welcome families, believe me there are plenty of resort properties that will. The parents don't have to cruise.

 

So, every cruise line will not just allow children, but will welcome them with open arms. That is why you don't see these kids on the Eurodam being chastised in any way for their antics. No way is any lower level HAL employee ... waiter, cabin steward, cruise staff, etc., gonna put their job on the line to chastise one of the children. If the parent gets upset ... which well they might ... that HAL employee could find themselves being packed off the ship at the next port, out of a job.

 

No, the only person(s) who can handle this problem are high level officers ... the hotel manager, etc., and obviously they have declined to do so. Why? Because the parents of those little darlings may very well be dropping a bundle on the ship, and HAL doesn't want that interferred with. So they will just tell the waiters in the dining room to be extra careful for children underfoot. If they inadvertently cause one to be injured, it's their a**, plain and simple. A waiter, after all, is a very expendable commodity. The passenger dropping a bundle in the casino, on drinks, etc., is not.

 

Blue skies ...

 

--rita

 

And another Terrorist is born!! I doubt the officers have time to observe the misbehaving children, run and look up their shipboard accounts, then run back and reprimand the errant child.......

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Very Well said, Brian!!!!!!!! I agree with EVERY word. As you know, I have written Seattle a very, very long letter stating my disappointment with my Eurodam cruise. I have 610 days on Hal and have been sailing with Hal since 1962. This was , by far, my worst cruise ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Will let you know if Hal even responds to my letter. Not holding my breath. I am gold on Cunard, which is less cruises and days than gold on Hal. I get so many more perks with them and the service, even in Hal's best days has been far superior. I may be switching to Cunard. We can always sail with the gang on Cunard!!!!

 

If Seattle and Stein Cruise were so oblivious to peoples' needs when they were on board, what hope is there that they will even answer you with more than a form letter? I read about your horrible bathroom experiences and felt awful for what you had to endure. I do hope you get some response, but wouldn't hold my breath waiting for a reply. By the way, I look forward to meeting you on the Noordam in January.

I sail on the Eurodam this month but have lowered my expectations to zero and am just going with the idea that is will be a nice weekend on the water and that's that. Better than not being on the water.

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Great meeting you and your child bride as well. Hope we sail together again soon.

 

Speaking of which, I'm on the 9/17/08 sailing of the Rotterdam and booked the 8/23/09 Prinsendam sailing while on board the Eurodam. Maybe you and Maria would like to join in on the fun.

 

Joyce

 

Two of our favorite dam ships however we're already booked for the remainder of this year and for 2009 - Next time!

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