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Found 69 results

  1. Has anyone been on HAL Zaandam recently and able to comment on food, evening entertainment and whether they have happy hour. We're going in March to south America and through panama canal. Any information would be great.
  2. We’re considering a 2021 sailing of the MS Zaandam, and are wondering if she has had the upgrades we’re enjoying on the MS Volendam? We’re really liking the interactive TVs and the showers are wonderful! Can any recent cruisers help us with this information? Thanks.
  3. We are on Zaandam’s first cruise of the New England/Canada season, sailing April 21 from Ft Lauderdale. I’ve looked at local tour offerings in Bar Harbor, and websites show that their season starts the first or second week of May. If you have done this cruise in April, would you let me know if we can expect local tour offerings at the pier, even though they are not showing online? I realize it’s also possible that HAL reserves the available resources for its own tours. It’s our first visit to Bar Harbor, and we do want to experience Acadia. Thank you for any suggestions.
  4. We just booked our longest cruise ever...32 days to the South Pacific. If you have cruised this route before we would love to hear any experiences and thoughts on your trip. We booked a Ocean View and hope that works out as well. Please let us know your thoughts. Frank
  5. First let me say for both of our important anniversaries ( 40th and 45th ) dh and I have taken long cruises on rotterdam (our favorite ship) because of zaandam going at the time we want to go and place we want to go we are looking to cruise on her. From what I can tell she looks very much like Rotterdam, with an extra pool. If you have cruised on both, did you notice any differences? In your opinion do the two ships have the same "feel"? We will only have one 50th so I want to be pretty sure we are picking the "right" ship. Thanks for any insight you can give. Helen
  6. We are considering one of these ships, I know that they are both going into dry dock within the coming months. We plan on going in either late August or early September. Which ship would you choose? Also any idea what changes or updates to either of the ships?
  7. Hi All, We will be on a 22 day cruise next month on the Zaandam with quite a lot of sea days and scenic cruising days. Are there any recent cruisers on Zaandam that can comment on if they put bridge and/or mahjong on their schedules? Can anyone confirm if Zaandam has mahjong sets on board? Trying to decide if I should buy a travel mahjong.
  8. Hi everyone, Happy New Year!!!! Just wondering if anyone can tell me who the Piano Bar entertainers are. Just heading off to Santiago to our first leg of Antarctica adventures
  9. Hi! It's been ages since I've been on a cruise but my 10 year old son and I are looking at the summer ones out of Boston or Montreal and choosing between these two ships. I know HAL not usually "kid friendly" but he grew up in NYC, knows how to behave and doesn't need a lot of hoopla. Just wondering what might be a better ship for us! We are all about relaxation! 😉
  10. I was very pleasantly surprised to find the ship appearance much nicer than when I sailed a few years ago with refurbished carpets, soft furnishings etc. The food has been better than i remembered - both in the main dining room and the Lido. The Indonesian and Filipino crew are as lovely as ever. However what an enormous disappointment is the total lack of entertainment and ambience. The ship is flat. The cruise director, whoever he is, makes infrequent appearances and flat dialogues of not more than a sentence or two. "have a nice evening' at the end of a performance or over the intercom etc. No personality, no happy smiles or, heaven forbid, a sense of humour, and no energy. The scheduling for whatever limited evening 'entertainment' that may be on offer is appalling with no thought to those who are on fixed seating/late dining as some things are scheduled for 8pm with no repeats earlier or later. The 'entertainment' over the past week has been flat and boring. We have quite a number of sea days on this itinerary which I usually look forward to. Even the female hostess delivering trivia questions reads them in a monotone and bored fashion. The ship itself lends itself to a happy, convivial atmosphere but unfortunately the whole place is just dead and there is absolutely no happy ambience. Passengers are not even acknowledging each other in the corridors with a nod or a smile. We are constantly hearing 'worst cruise ever' type comments. All the recent reports on CC about lack of entertainment on HAL are not unfounded. It is so disappointing to hear people who are cruising for the first time say they will never do another cruise. I am a 4 star mariner and am writing this just to reaffirm earlier posts about entertainment. It's not important to everyone but is important to create a happy social atmosphere on board for those who want. My friends and I will not be back to HAL.
  11. Hi - we are going for a cruise on HAL's Zaandam soon - has anybody been in the last year or so who can tell me if the TV in the room has a DVD player, or has on demand movies. It seems older ships have the DVD player and upgraded ones have the on demand movies - but if it still has the DVD player I can bring along my favourite box set to watch on rainy days - but not if it has been upgraded to on demand movies and doesn't have a DVD player. thanks.
  12. Looking at the Canada/NE US itinerary and trying to decide which to take. Any opinions for me please?
  13. We are sailing on the Zaandam in a Vista B suite (6107) Is anyone able to tell us if these cabins have a shower over the bath tub. Some photos we see they do others they don't..hoping the the latter Many thx
  14. I have been on neither of these ships. I’m looking at a Canada New England itinerary. I’m looking for the good and not so good about either ships. Thanks in advance.
  15. I just returned from a week on the Zaandam, Montreal to Boston. I was so disappointed and thought I'd share my review. I'm a frequent cruiser, generally Princess, Royal Caribbean, and NCL. It's been at least 20 years since I was on HAL but I know it has an excellent reputation. The Zaandam did not live up to it. Food: Dinner in the main dining room was poor. I ordered red meat 2 or 3 times, and the meat was overcooked (I ordered medium rare) and texture was off. Lobster tail was overcooked and wasn't served with melted butter. Desserts were okay, but weren't as described. Fish tasted like frozen fish was used. Service was mediocre, our waiter seemed tired all the time, and on 2nd gala dinner, service was atrocious. Dinner in the Pinnacle Grill was excellent, steak cooked appropriately, and huge servings. Well worth the $39. Lido Buffet has a great salad bar for lunch and dinner. Breakfast food was average. Main courses at lunch and dinner were mediocre. Desserts and ice cream were average. Buffet closed at 2pm and didn't re-open until 5:00 or 5:30 so if you were hungry in the afternoon or when returning from shore excursions, your options were Dive-In Grill or afternoon tea (which I heard was good but I never went). Dive-In Grill for hot dogs and burgers was good. Ship: The Zaandam is in need of renovation. The bathroom tile was coming off the wall in places and looked like it was from the 1960's. We did have a tub/shower combo which is a rarity on a ship, but I would rather have not had to climb over the high tub edge to get in the shower. Cabin was well-designed and had a lot of closet space. I found blood on my pillow cases - wasn't from me - pillow cases were immediately changed but this grossed me out anyways. Public spaces were nice. Entertainment and Activities: Main stage shows were terrible, with the exception of the stand up comedian. I never saw Amanda, the cruise director, anywhere except for the main stage shows. She did not seem particularly enthusiastic. America's Test Kitchen was ok, but needs an overhead mirror so you can better see what the chef is doing. Not enough seats in there. I didn't go to any of the computer workshops, but there are a lot of these, mainly on working with digital photos. There were almost no daytime activities. Trivia was boring and questions so obscure. I only ever saw one other cruise entertainment staff other than cruise director, and she wasn't very enthusiastic either. There was a fabulous string quartet, but other entertainment was terrible. I was so bored on this ship - and other people felt the same way. Jamie
  16. It's finally here - the start of the 2019-2020 Port Everglades sail-away season! For anyone new or who may have forgotten, here is the map of Port Everglades. Zaandam will be at pier 26 (where most of the HAL ships dock) port to from 0530-1700. She will be heading out on a 17-day Inca and Panama Canal Discovery cruise. Fort Lauderdale, Florida (16 Oct d1700); Oranjestad, Aruba (19 Oct 0800-2300); Panama Canal (Cruising Canal) (21 Oct 0500-0500); Panama City, Panama (21 Oct 2000(+1)1700); Manta, Ecuador (24 Oct 0500-1900); Salaverry (Trujillo), Peru (26 Oct 0300-1700); Callao (Lima), Peru (27 Oct 1000(+1)1800); Pisco, Peru (29 Oct 0700-1600); Coquimbo (La Serena), Chile (01 Nov 0700-1600); San Antonio, Chile (02 Nov a0700) There are no other ships in port. The PTZtv webcams can be found at https://www.portevergladeswebcam.com/ and https://www.ftlauderdalewebcam.com/. Also, Nieuw Amsterdam will be in Aruba from 0800-1700. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.portarubawebcam.com/. For the addicts - Zuiderdam will be in New York City on 17 October from 0800-1800 (https://www.nyharborwebcam.com/ and https://www.portnywebcam.com/). Volendam will be in FLL on the 18th from 0700-1200. She will be heading to Freeport for drydock so her departure may be much later than noon. I am not going to start separate threads for these two. We can use this one if anyone is watching and wishes to post. Next up: Nieuw Amsterdam on 19 October.
  17. Zaandam is repositioning from her Canada/New England run and stopping in to Port Canaveral before arriving in Port Everglades on Wednesday. She will be in port from 0900-1800. She is the only ship in port. The Port Canaveral webcam can be found at https://www.portcanaveralwebcam.com/. Next up: HAL returns to FLL on Wednesday!!!
  18. It's been a while since I was on the Zaandam so have questions: 1) Have they replaced the safes that needed a credit card to open to ones that can be programmed with one's own numbers? 2) Are the hangers fully removable from the rod or are they the ones with the permanent metal circles and only the bottom portions are movable? 3) Are the fixed and at will diners still separated? 4) Is this one of the ships where the inhouse singers and dancers are no more? 5) Has the Lido been upgraded to the new serving method and the separate food lines by category? Thanks
  19. I think that on the R-class ships all the veranda and oceanview bathrooms had tubs - only the inside rooms had real showers. Just now we are back from a B2B on the Zaandam and got to look at several different cabins while they were being made up for the turn-around. To our surprise, we saw oceanviews with nice new real-shower bathrooms. I was able to ask the Hotel Director about this. He said that HAL has realized that people's attitudes have changed and that tubs were no longer liked, so HAL will be converting most tub bathrooms to showers. The Zaandam plan is to do about a quarter at each drydock, so that in ten years they will all be updated. The first phase is done. This is now apparent in the fine print on the deck plan on the HAL website - the C-class is now listed as 'shower', instead of 'tub and shower'. I'm sorry that I didn't follow up with the HD as to whether this was the plan for all the older ships, but the Amsterdam and Volendam (but not Rotterdam) deck plans now list C-cabins as 'shower'. However I have found that the deck plans featured on several cruise agent websites have not been updated. So beware when browsing or booking - check with HAL. The Cruise Atlas probably cannot be trusted since it is only updated annually and might not reflect the latest drydock. And even the website might not be trustable, given all the user complaints.
  20. We had a wonderful cruise this June on the Zaandam. No complaints except for the joggers on the promenade deck. To all the joggers out there: There are cabins directly under the promenade and when a jogger/runner runs on the deck it makes a boom boom boom pounding noise in the cabin below. We were woken up 5 out of the seven mornings by someone running on the deck. This was around 6:30 am each morning. Each morning we would hear boom boom boom, then a few minutes of quiet before again hearing the pounding of feet above us. After hearing this pattern of pounding for a good 30-40 minutes, it was difficult to fall back asleep. After the first morning, I went onto the promenade and looked for signs that said no running. I didn't see any signs but my friend said there was one at the end of the deck. By the third morning I called passenger services and asked them to have someone go up and ask people not to run before 8:00 am. I was told, sorry but there is nothing they can do about the joggers and runners on the promenade. I responded by asking them to at least ask the runners to wait until 8:00 am and was again told there was nothing that they could do. I wrote this comment multiple times in my follow up questionnaire. I hope HAL does something to fix this problem. Either prohibit running/jogging completely and ENFORCE it! Or at least ask for no running/jogging prior to 8:00 am and ENFORCE it!. Also put up multiple signs in multiple places to inform people of the rules. Although I was very happy with everything else about this cruise the lack of response by HAL to do something about this was frustrating. In the future I will avoid any cabins on the deck below the promenade and recommend that others do the same. I read cruise critic often, especially when picking out a cruise and cabin. I'm surprised I hadn't read anything about this problem in the past. And I already know about not getting a cabin below a common area....I just didn't think about the runners on the promenade.
  21. When was the last dry dock for Zaandam and does anyone know what updates, if any, were made to the cabins e.g. bathroom tiling, soft furnishings etc. I thought I had read somewhere that there was a not so long ago drydock, but can't find it now and wonder if I was dreaming!
  22. Welcome to my trip report/review of the Zaandam Montreal to Boston cruise. We left Montreal on Saturday, August 10, 2019 for this 7 night cruise. We disembarked in Boston on August 17, 2019. Please feel free to ask any questions, and I will try my best to answer them. I realize that not everyone's experience will be the same, and keep in mind this was our experience. Travelers were me and my husband (40's), our son (13), and my mother (70s). My husband and I have cruised about 14 or 15 times on mass market cruise lines such as NCL, RCCL, Princess, Carnival, MSC, and Premier (remember the little blue boat?). We tend to cruise in a balcony cabin. For the Zaandam, we had 2 oceanview cabins on deck 2 near the bow. Cabins were adjacent but not connecting.
  23. I am looking for feedback regarding the Zaandam and Amsterdam ships. We are looking at an Eastern Canada cruise next June and both these ships do the itinerary. They look very similar but I was wondering if there is an advantage of one over the other? Also, in terms of the itineraries which go from Montreal to Boston and in reverse, stopping at the same ports, is one direction better than the other? Perhaps it's splitting hairs. We have never done this itinerary. We have sailed on the Zuiderdam and Eurodam previously. Thank you in advance for you help!
  24. We are thinking about booking a New England/Canada cruise for next summer. HAL has two ships sailing that area. Zaandam or Amsterdam? Are they basically the same ship? They seem to be in the same class. Thoughts or comments? Also, is there any chance that HAL will implement any of their new music partnerships such as Billboard Onboard, BB Kings or Lincoln Center Stage on either of these ships? I know they are small and have limited space, but maybe they convert some of their existing space. Thanks
  25. If you have any questions about the Zaandam I just sailed on her for two weeks. 7/6-7/20 Sue
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