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sppunk

North to Alaska! Live from Volendam (and Vancouver) - May 22-29, 2019

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The setup of the Explorer's Lounge pictured early is exactly the way it was set up on Zaandam late last year.  The Adagio players in the first half of the 40 day cruise (Julian Aleev and Yegor Yegorov) would pack the place... not so much the second half but still half full or more most of the time.  I think both itinerary and musicians sort of dictate attendance here more so than the set up.  We did find that the area was poorly serviced (little attention from the bar stewards) before and during performances which might also contribute to the poor attendance.

 

Glad you had such a nice time, Chris!

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4 hours ago, sppunk said:

This morning we slept in. To 10:30 a.m. RuthC would be impressed. 

She is. Keep up the good work!

4 hours ago, sppunk said:

 

And I have to point out the Explorers Lounge on Volendam is a depressing venue.

The room looks a lot better than it did after a refit a few years ago. At that time the 'classroom' set-up had even more institutional chairs, and no carpeting. It was a (I think faux) hardwood floor. The echoes would drown out any conversation. Like a very badly done classroom.

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What a treat to click on Cruise Critic today and find your review!!  I loved it! It was 14 years ago yesterday that we began this great adventure of cruising—-with a cruise/tour of Alaska. We were on the beautiful Ryndam, and your review and many pictures brought back so many great memories. 

 

I’m so glad you included several pictures of the two of you. The lovely K is as beautiful as ever, and I think the beard and moustache are a great look on you!!

Hopefully, one of these days, we will cruise again with y’all.

 

Wondering which future cruise you chose—-it will be great, wherever you go.

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Loved your reports.

 

Hope you get home safely.

 

We have had bad storms in PA for the last 2 days and tomorrow will be another bad day.

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33 minutes ago, wandb said:

What a treat to click on Cruise Critic today and find your review!!  I loved it! It was 14 years ago yesterday that we began this great adventure of cruising—-with a cruise/tour of Alaska. We were on the beautiful Ryndam, and your review and many pictures brought back so many great memories. 

 

I’m so glad you included several pictures of the two of you. The lovely K is as beautiful as ever, and I think the beard and moustache are a great look on you!!

Hopefully, one of these days, we will cruise again with y’all.

 

Wondering which future cruise you chose—-it will be great, wherever you go.

Hi - hope all is well! Probably Northern Europe bit on Oceania - they overnight two nights in St. Petersburg’s where HAL only does one. Makes a huge difference there. 

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Surely appreciate your review and the photos since I will be embarking Westerdam in early July for a Vancouver-Seward itinerary.  Thanks!

 

Disappointed, as well, with some of the MDR menus posted.  I saw a few that were almost, if not exactly,  mirrors of what I was offered on Nieuw Statendam in January in the Caribbean.  I didn't care for the selections--or the preparations then--and won't now if such menus are offered during my Westerdam cruise.  I am encouraged that there was a somewhat "Alaska tilt" to some of the offerings.

 

A recent Coral Princess Alaskan cruiser posted the menus from their cruise.  Each menu had so many delectable offerings that I am considering not patronizing the Bayou Cafe or Sabatini's during my cruise on Coral Princess this Summer.

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I really enjoyed your posts and photos.  Thank you so much for sharing and taking your time to give us a glimpse into your lovely cruise and life aboard ship.  Loved seeing the menus and your thoughts on what you ate.  Your photo of your last Wang Wang  😞  ....was sad but I hope you enjoyed it!

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We  have cruised to AK with HAL for many years, we were on Noordam for two weeks last May- one week N to Seward from Van and one week back.  This year decided on the round trip AK from Van mainly because of the changes with the entertainment.  We like to listen to Adagio before dinner but had to sit outside in the lounge because we did not want to sit in a row and disturb folks as we left.  Also we missed having the real movie theater where we have always loved to watch a recent movie not seen at home.

 However, this year things have greatly changed on Volendam.  Adagio is also in the straight line row and there was only one movie ( Snow Dogs) in the Theater.

The outside cabin we had on Noordam last year had less storage space than the outside one we had last week this year on Volendam.  One three drawer unit had been taken over last year as a mini bar.  I heard that they are planning changes in Nov for the Volendam and our steward said that the televisions will all be replaced.  Let's hope they do not take a three drawer unit and put in a mini bar.

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Safe flight home. Thanks for taking us along on your cruise.

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Thanks for that great review sppunk....agree with you 100%.....we were on the same cruise.  I swear I must have been standing next to you for the pictures as mine echo yours lol.  Wasn't the scenery stunning!!!.  This was our first Alaskan cruise and we loved it and the Volendam.  I did find the dining room service a bit slow and inattentive at times but that did not affect our cruise at all.  With the system being down for a couple of days it probably saved me some money at the casino lol.  Although we did not stop to listen to Adagio, they did not get a decent turnout any of the nights we walked past.  It looked like a high school concert set-up.  We thought Lee on the piano was not a very good singer but could hear him while we sat in the bar beside the casino.  Enjoyed reading your review and your pictures are wonderful.  Thanks again.

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