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galensgrl

Back from thge Veendam

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Heading out on Veendam May 30. Our 4th time on her and we can't wait!

 

I do have a question. The Bermudian and US dollars seem to trade one to one. Did they accept American dollars or did you need to exchange money?

 

The Bermudian dollar is pegged to the US dollar at par (one to one). Virtually everywhere accepts both currencies interchangeably, you shouldn't have to exchange money.

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Cayman 09,

 

Glad to hear you loved your cabin. We have 095 starboard corner. We will use the steps to go down, but have to use the elevator for going up.

 

Hope you can answer a few questions for me.

 

Does the Lido deck overhang enough to provide shade on the balcony? How many chairs are on the balcony and I assume the small table will not hold a room service tray?

Was it windy or calm and did you have a soot problem? We so love our balcony and this looked to be larger then most of the Vista balconies.

 

I know we will be happy with the size of the ship as she is a sister to the Ryndam and that is our favorite ship of all the ships we have sailed, so sorry she is leaving the fleet and we will not get to sail her again.

 

Peg

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Heading out on Veendam May 30. Our 4th time on her and we can't wait!

 

I do have a question. The Bermudian and US dollars seem to trade one to one. Did they accept American dollars or did you need to exchange money?

 

You may use them interchangeably. If the shop has both currencies you will frequently get USD back as well, but try to use exact change or you may come home with some Bermudian money if they don't have enough change.

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Sorry you didn't make it. Also missed galensgrl. Not sure if she was there. I'm having a great day in Halifax. There is just something about being in your home country that is comforting to me.

 

Yes - you're right. At least we're having good weather today. Hopefully weather in Charlottetown will be nice too....Sydney can be chilly and windy sometimes. I like it when I look in my wallet and can easily identify the bills :p

 

Hope you are enjoying the 2nd part of the cruise. BTW - my son lives near St Paul, AB....not sure if it's anywhere near where you're from or not....

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You may use them interchangeably. If the shop has both currencies you will frequently get USD back as well, but try to use exact change or you may come home with some Bermudian money if they don't have enough change.

 

I used USD and everywhere gave me back USD/change. I had to ask one store if I could have the coins back in Bermudian as I wanted a few to bring home to show how much they looked like the Cdn change (same on front but different pictures on back).

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So happy you had such a good cruise on Veendam.

Thanks for sharing with us about your positive experience.

Welcome Back... :)

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Hi Peg, the overhang is almost all the way out, but allows some sun. We docked with the port side facing the harbor and got sun all afternoon. Starboard should have shade. There are two arm chairs (look for cushions tucked behind the curtains) a small table plus a lounger. That leaves plenty of additional room to walk around, it's quite large. No spot, but windy while under way. The sunset coming out of Boston comes right from behind the wake, beautiful. Have a great cruise.

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Sorry Peg, that should read no soot! Also, your steward will take your table out to the balcony from your room for a room service meal. More than enough room for it.

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We were on the same cruise. Had a great time...however, not our best HAL cruise because we had a lanai...and were unable to use it at all while docked in Hamilton...as they had a barge working on the lifeboat outside our room.

 

Would book the ship again for this wonderful itinerary...just not a lanai on port side!

 

We were on the Veendam's May 2nd cruise, starboard side lanai had the same problem in Hamilton 2 days in a row. It was more of a problem for my disabled DH who couldn't use our automatic slider to get out on deck. We did receive an on-board credit for the inconvenience. I agree that other

wise, it was a great cruise.

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Yes - you're right. At least we're having good weather today. Hopefully weather in Charlottetown will be nice too....Sydney can be chilly and windy sometimes. I like it when I look in my wallet and can easily identify the bills :p

 

Hope you are enjoying the 2nd part of the cruise. BTW - my son lives near St Paul, AB....not sure if it's anywhere near where you're from or not....

 

I'm from calgary.

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Glad you're having a good trip. DW, DPJ and I wondered when you were going on your trip. (Probably should have written it down. My bad.)

 

Most of the peeps at the front desk leave something to be desired but other than that this cruise has been VERY good. I'm surprised at how good the MDR service has been, wine service and all. Tonight I went to the Canaletto. I've never been a fan but it's really good. I'm making my third visit Friday. There is an amazing sunset tonight. Makes me happy to be on a ship. I've been very pleasantly surprised at this ship. They seem to want to go out of their way to make you happy.

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Most of the peeps at the front desk leave something to be desired but other than that this cruise has been VERY good. I'm surprised at how good the MDR service has been, wine service and all. Tonight I went to the Canaletto. I've never been a fan but it's really good. I'm making my third visit Friday. There is an amazing sunset tonight. Makes me happy to be on a ship. I've been very pleasantly surprised at this ship. They seem to want to go out of their way to make you happy.

 

Never had to deal with the front desk much but I found the staff throughout the ship were helpful, always smiling. As I said in another post - what the ship may not have for "flashiness" and all the "things" that larger ships have, the crews attitude more than makes up for it.....it appeared they genuinely wanted us to have a good time and feel pampered :-) Where else could you order a drink from someone on Sailaway and two days later come out of their way to say hello and call you by name???

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Hi Peg, the overhang is almost all the way out, but allows some sun. We docked with the port side facing the harbor and got sun all afternoon. Starboard should have shade. There are two arm chairs (look for cushions tucked behind the curtains) a small table plus a lounger. That leaves plenty of additional room to walk around, it's quite large. No spot, but windy while under way. The sunset coming out of Boston comes right from behind the wake, beautiful. Have a great cruise.

 

Hello Cayman 09,

So glad you told me where to look for the seat cushions.

Good to know we will have quite a bit of shade. We definitely would have preferred port side but, there are only two corner cabins to a deck, so starboard it is.

 

Did not know steward would move inside table to balcony for a meal. We always eat breakfast in our cabin. We would never have him do that for fourteen days. We will juggle our coffee pot and cups out the door to the small table. If the weather and wind cooperate maybe dinner on the balcony while docked in Quebec or cruising down the St. Lawrence.

 

We are so looking forward to sunsets, moon rising and who knows maybe even a sunrise over the wake on our aft soot free balcony. As you can see we really do enjoy our balcony whenever we are not on a shore excursion.

 

Thank you so much, you have been a great help.

Peg

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Lorie & Ann,

 

Glad to hear you both had great cruises and that the Veendam is in good shape.

 

We board her on the 11th of July for the 14 day New England/Canada cruise.

 

Due to some postings, we booked her with great trepidation. We do have one of those infamous aft added on cabins. She is the size ship we love, with a very good itinerary(how often do you get to visit the same port twice) at the right time of the year for us.

 

Peg

 

Hi Peg. We had an aft cabin and we loved it. The balcony was a very good size, we were pleased with our choice. Can hardly wait to cruise again. :)

 

Lorie

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Sorry you didn't make it. Also missed galensgrl. Not sure if she was there. I'm having a great day in Halifax. There is just something about being in your home country that is comforting to me.

 

The day before we embarked in Boston I fell while walking the dogs and broke several ribs. It was hard to get around, and I didn't make it to the meet and greet. I did have a really good excuse to slow down, relax and enjoy the ship. :D Hopefully next cruise will be taken under better circumstances! lol

 

Lorie

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The day before we embarked in Boston I fell while walking the dogs and broke several ribs. It was hard to get around, and I didn't make it to the meet and greet. I did have a really good excuse to slow down, relax and enjoy the ship. :D Hopefully next cruise will be taken under better circumstances! lol

 

Lorie

 

I couldn't have walked to the Crow's Nest that morning if I tried. No idea what I did (or didn't do)....but night of sailaway whatever hit (and hit hard)....I never realized how long a ship could be until you have to walk from the aft elevators to the medical center wayyyyyyyyyy up front :-(

 

Hope you're feeling better:)

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The day before we embarked in Boston I fell while walking the dogs and broke several ribs. It was hard to get around, and I didn't make it to the meet and greet. I did have a really good excuse to slow down, relax and enjoy the ship. :D Hopefully next cruise will be taken under better circumstances! lol

 

Lorie

 

Ouch! Sorry to hear that.

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We were on the same cruise. Had a great time...however, not our best HAL cruise because we had a lanai...and were unable to use it at all while docked in Hamilton...as they had a barge working on the lifeboat outside our room.

 

Would book the ship again for this wonderful itinerary...just not a lanai on port side!

 

Oops, we've got a port side Lanai on the June 6 sailing! Surely that won't still be a problem?

 

I've got a food question for you returnees: Did you notice any Bermuda based food choices? How did they handle dinner service with so many people going ashore?

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Oops, we've got a port side Lanai on the June 6 sailing! Surely that won't still be a problem?

 

I've got a food question for you returnees: Did you notice any Bermuda based food choices? How did they handle dinner service with so many people going ashore?

 

They had "Bermuda chicken" in the dining room one night. Not sure what made it "Bermuda" but that's what they called it. It was terribly salty and one was on the few dishes we did not like on the entire voyage! Most of the other food was quite good, with the desserts/pastries being exceptional. Do try the Indonesian/Filipino buffet in the Lido one night; we never eat dinner in the buffet on ships but this was the one exception and WELL worth it!

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Oops, we've got a port side Lanai on the June 6 sailing! Surely that won't still be a problem?

 

I've got a food question for you returnees: Did you notice any Bermuda based food choices? How did they handle dinner service with so many people going ashore?

 

I'm thinking the work will be constant but I could be wrong. I have a balcony on the port side and the constant chipping of paint and drilling was annoying. It's nice to have some peace and quiet on the balcony since they are expesive and it's too cold to use it now.

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They had "Bermuda chicken" in the dining room one night. Not sure what made it "Bermuda" but that's what they called it. It was terribly salty and one was on the few dishes we did not like on the entire voyage! Most of the other food was quite good, with the desserts/pastries being exceptional. Do try the Indonesian/Filipino buffet in the Lido one night; we never eat dinner in the buffet on ships but this was the one exception and WELL worth it!

 

Yes, the Bermuda chicken did seem quite salty - but I did not eat it in the MDR, I ate it at the Bar-b-q by the Lido pool. I attributed it to the type of mariande they may have used to prep it for Bar-b-q-ing and the fact that perhaps the original recipe may have called for brine as fresh water was at a premium?? I can't say for sure, but there may have been the odd fish entree that may have been tagged as "Bermudian".I don't eat fish so I wouldn't have paid any attention.

 

I agree that the Indonesian/Filipino in Lido was wonderful - I tried a little of everything (except if there was fish...) and the crew are so proud of their culture - special decorations, etc.

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I'm thinking the work will be constant but I could be wrong. I have a balcony on the port side and the constant chipping of paint and drilling was annoying. It's nice to have some peace and quiet on the balcony since they are expesive and it's too cold to use it now.

 

Unless a ship is very new, I'm under the impression that ships are a bee-hive of ongoing maintenance. I have seen them in Saint John on port days and they are always painting, fixing, cleaning, sanding, etc. no matter which cruise line. I suspect that salt water and salt air is not friendly to paint (even marine paint) and they would have to do that type of thing mostly when the ship isn't at sea.

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Bermuda chicken?

 

No such thing... not on the island for sure. Unless two possibilities.

 

First is the standard KFC that you can pick from a bucket etc on Queen Street. Tasteless as usual as anywhere else!

 

The other chicken might be 'feral' chicken that can be found roaming around the island. A pest and quite sure they won't be cooked and eaten. Known here as 'yard bird'.

 

Whatever is supposed to be.... too bad it was too salty. I think some chefs overdo the salt.

 

Stephen

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Bermuda chicken?

 

No such thing... not on the island for sure. Unless two possibilities.

 

First is the standard KFC that you can pick from a bucket etc on Queen Street. Tasteless as usual as anywhere else!

 

The other chicken might be 'feral' chicken that can be found roaming around the island. A pest and quite sure they won't be cooked and eaten. Known here as 'yard bird'.

 

Whatever is supposed to be.... too bad it was too salty. I think some chefs overdo the salt.

 

Stephen

 

I quite like watching the "yard birds" when I'm in Bermuda...they have lots of character! :p

 

As far as HAL's "Bermuda chicken", who knows where they got the name but as ****zu said, it tasted like they marinated it in salt water for weeks haha. It was the one dish I was really disappointed it.

 

On a side note, it was WONDERFUL to meet and chat with you Stephen. You are wonderful company and a pleasure to talk with. Thanks again!! [now I just need to find a copy of your Spotless Fleet book to add to my collection of art books! Your paintings truly are remarkable. ]

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We just returned from the Veendam as well Peg, and had an aft cabin 082 - port corner. We loved it. A few steps from the staircase or elevators, one flight up to the like buffet or pool bar. Two floors down to the Explorations Cafe or dining. Would book it again. Agree with the reviews that the Veendam is our new favorite HAL Ship.

Thanks for the review of Veendam. We are booked 20 Dec from San Diego in cabin 070. Reading some of the reviews I was regretting it. Your review makes us feel better.

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