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Rotterdam 12/2 review Part 1


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Here is my review of our trip. I have broken it up into 2 parts as it was too large for one post.

We boarded the Rotterdam after a smooth embarkation in Ft. Lauderdale. We were on the Ship in under 20 minutes despite the additional security measures that have been added to embarkation.


The Captain of the Rotterdam for this cruise was Peter Bos, the Hotel Manager was Robert Versteeg, and Executive chef was Rene Rojas Olea. The entertainment included Attillio at the piano bar, and Martin Lass, a violinist with incredible talent!


We found the Rotterdam to be very clean and this was the first cruise that I can recall never smelling any kind of foul odor anywhere on the Ship. Our suite was lovely, well kept with the new (and very wonderful) linens and duvet. We did have a few days of a "slow" flushing toilet, and the Capt. announced this was a Ship wide problem that was thankfully rectified by our 3rd day on the cruise. We never had another problem, nor did I hear of any reported by fellow passengers.


Our cabin steward was Bambang, an Indonesian steward who had been with HAL for over 7 years. In fact he was part of the crew that prepared the ship at the Italian shipyard. (I know this as he lamented to us about the food he ate in Italy and the lack of rice in the meals.) He was wonderfully efficient and friendly, we enjoyed him a great deal. While onboard we saw familiar faces from our other cruises, and each greeted us like old friends.


This time we traveled with 2 friends. They were in an outside room and reported that there cabin boy was also friendly and efficient. Unfortunately, our friends encountered so many "problems" on board the ship , that they have vowed to go back to another cruise line. Their problems began with a disastrous first night in the dining room. Our friends and us were seated at a table for 8 with a view of the kitchen door. It was amazing to me that although our other 4 table mates were also in suites, we were placed at what proved to be the worst table in the dining room. When we arrived to the table, we had the menus shoved in our faces, By a stone faced waiter without even a hello. We requested ice tea at the beginning of the meal, and received it after the main course had arrived. It had been warm and we requested a refill, which never was provided. Our orders were totally screwed up that night and 2 of our table mates ended up getting no main course with the steward insisting in a surly voice that they had not ordered them!! The topper of the evening, was that one of our assigned table companions had obviously partied quite heavily before coming to dinner, and she continued to drink through dinner with no entree....needless to say it was not a pretty picture. She became known to us as "Sheena of the wine bottle" for the remainder of the trip.:eek:


Needless to say this was not a good way to start the cruise and I fretted about having to approach our concierge the next day with the problem as I am not one to whine about things on a cruise. Never the less, I presented the situation to her early the next morning and within 2 hours we were put at a different table, this time for 4, with very efficient wait staff.

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