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Schlepporello

Everything Maasdam

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12 hours ago, Schlepporello said:

What is the EXC program, by the way?

And are the zodiacs on the ship or at the ports?

Maasdam is doing special cruises that are supposed to be “in depth”. This includes lectures (beyond what other ships offer) and zodiac tours from the ship in some ports.

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Sailing on the Maasdam next year for the 2nd time.

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Getting ready to sail on the Maasdam EXC for 14 days from Sydney to Auckland. A key selling point to us in booking this cruise were the Zodiac tours and EXC educational experiences. But, when we were booked and finally got a look at the excursions offered on our particular cruise, there were only two Zodiac tours offered over 14 days.  And, last night they cancelled at least one of them - the Zodiac tour in Milford Sound. Waiting to hear if they also cancelled the second (in Tauranga).

 

And, despite asking lots of questions of HAL, we have no idea what to expect from onboard EXC programming. We can not get info on it from HAL.

 

Given our pre-cruise experiences (which granted, we have a few weeks before we board), we wouldn't book Maasdam for the EXC and Zodiac.

 

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As a response to MayasWay. I would definitely book the Maasdam for the EXC in Alaska. We had a fantastic 21 days on the Maasdam in June/July 2019. The Zodiacs were not yet certified by the USCG for use in US waters but we were told they should be good to go by this coming season. They were on the bow deck ready to go last year. 

As a previous poster said, HAL does Alaska very well. Last year was our 3rd time there on a HAL ship. 

 

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Thanks everyone! I'm sold!

I've cancelled our 7-day northbound cruise we had booked on the Millenium and booked the 14-day Alaskan cruise on the Maasdam instead. We got the July 27, 2020 sailing. I'll be joining that roll call tonight.

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19 hours ago, Schlepporello said:

What is the EXC program, by the way?

And are the zodiacs on the ship or at the ports?

 

The zodiacs are on the ship - they are kept on the bow of the ship.

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Thanks to everyone who has commented, and to @Schlepporello for asking the question.  We are booked for Alaska on Maasdam and I've had some concerns.  We haven't been on one of the older, smaller HAL ships for a few years.  It sounds like my concerns are unfounded 🙂

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The Maasdam is now considered a EXC ship. Meaning it is smaller, doesn’t have regular entertainment but more lectures and sea related things going on.  A smaller quiet ship more interested in the real experience instead of bells and whistles. You will find more lectures from naturalist. Please note! It will cost more than the larger ships as it goes to destinations other ships don’t. 

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We are cruising from Sydney to Auckland on her in Feb - our first time on HAL & really looking forward to it. We've mostly cruised on RCI, as well as others ( bells & whistle type ships), but chose Maasdam because the itineraries appealed to us, being port intensive and visiting some places the larger ships don't pull in at, that and idea of interesting lectures - especially from a naturalist; scenic cruising, meeting like minded people & exploring on the zodiacs. 

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I've sailed on the Maasdam a number of times, my last being a 20 night South Pacific cruise from and back to Auckland. She is my favorite ship, and  I have never had air conditioning or toilet issues. I'm booked on a 14 nite Mexican Rivera cruise on her in April 2021 that is an Exec cruise, and I can't wait! 

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The ship is fine. The service is great. The food is typical HAL which I have always enjoyed. We had no issues with our cabin and we did not hear of anybody who had anything go wrong of note. The absence of a fridge in our cabin was not an issue that caused me any great concern but given the lack of nightly entertainment I would have made good use of an on demand movie service if it had existed.

The 21 day Alaska cruise in May 2019 had a fantastic itinerary, the oldest demographic we have encountered in 7 prior HAL cruises and the ship was oh so quiet and dull at night. No BB Kings, piano guy playing to a crowd of 6 at most, and not many shows/performances worth the effort. Lots of lectures which helped fill the time but only because there is nothing better to do except for the twice per day quiz.

 

We will be avoiding this class of HAL ship in the future unless the itinerary is a stunner.

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Does Maasdam have the combo tub/shower rather than just the shower?   Wondering for EE cabins on Lower Promenade.    Deck plans we've found are not helpful in figuring this out.   

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Last winter our ocean view room 650 had the combo tub/shower.  The tub was short, but I loved it.

Barbara

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You always have the option of renting a refrigerator for $2 a day. Contact your TA, I've rented them before. 

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We're on her for the first time in April, Sea of Cortez. Cruised on her sister Volendam so long ago I can't remember exactly what it was like--but we loveloveloved the Prinsendam. Small ships are our favorite, so all should be well. 

Questions: 

Stateroom: Someone mentioned finding a site indicating she was refurbished in 2018. I note that some of the passenger photos on HAL site show a leather sofa and older/original wood cabinetry--as do *some* of the cabin category photos for this ship on the HAL website-- but HAL's verandah photos show a grey/yellow decor and what appear to be upholstered cabinets over the bed. So has it/has it not been refurbished? 

In same light, is there still, as some reviews have stated, only a single electrical outlet in the cabin? And that near the desk? One review said the steward brought them a strip...

Deck plans: on the Verandah deck 9 aft, there appears to be a separate open deck area. Is this accessible from the hallway? 

 

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3 hours ago, sofietucker said:

We're on her for the first time in April, Sea of Cortez. Cruised on her sister Volendam so long ago I can't remember exactly what it was like--but we loveloveloved the Prinsendam. Small ships are our favorite, so all should be well. 

Questions: 

 

Deck plans: on the Verandah deck 9 aft, there appears to be a separate open deck area. Is this accessible from the hallway? 

 

Yes, there are doors at the aft end of the hallways opening to a small veranda.

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