17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
The ship was AMAZING and the staff was exceptional. Right before we set sail, the president of Holland America was on board and we had a chance to meet him. He was very warm and welcoming and took to time out to take a picture with my ... Read More
The ship was AMAZING and the staff was exceptional. Right before we set sail, the president of Holland America was on board and we had a chance to meet him. He was very warm and welcoming and took to time out to take a picture with my husband and I. The ship was very beautiful and everything had a music theme. The food and dining options were very good, We discovered the Dutch café on deck 3 and the New York Pizza place on deck 10 which ended up being our favorite places to have lunch. The dining room meals rivaled that of a 5 star restaurant. We really enjoyed the live BB King All Star band that played nightly in the Queens Lounge. They kept the house rocking with oldies and some contemporary music and kept the dance floor filled. The shows on the World stage were very good an the venue was exceptional. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
The most important reason we cruise HAL is because they always have a Priest on board for Daily Mass. Went on this cruise so Canadian relatives could use our Naples home to get away from cold. We were on the Koningsdam Dec 30 16 to Jan 8 ... Read More
The most important reason we cruise HAL is because they always have a Priest on board for Daily Mass. Went on this cruise so Canadian relatives could use our Naples home to get away from cold. We were on the Koningsdam Dec 30 16 to Jan 8 2017 and enjoyed the cruise so when we found a good price for 3 weeks we returned in March. This is the new class of ships for HAL and there are many changes to the basic deck plans. The Queens Lounge is now on two decks and much larger but is used mostly for BB King and a few trivia games and lectures. The culinary arts is now aft near the dining room. The cooking classes are small and must be seen on a TV screen. They also have special diners every night at 7 with the food prepared in front of you. We didn't try this because we received mixed reviews from others. HAL is pushing the anytime dining over the fixed and as a result there is a long line every night waiting to check in for a table. They seem to have reduced the dining room staff because there is often a shortage of waiters to seat people. Sometimes too many people decide to eat at the same time and the waiters end up literally running to serve everyone. The elevators need a light to show which one has arrived. You end up in the middle waiting for a door to open and the rushing to enter before it closes. There were many negative comments heard about the design of the new ship. If you like to dance - this is not the ship for you. The band does not play in the Ocean Bar - only a very good piano player for 2-3 hours each night. There is a small dance floor but not one dancer in 21 nights. BB King is about the same - music is concert with many solos and very little dance music. We have spent New Years Eve on HAL for the last two years and we are booked for next year on the Nieu Amsterdam because we prefer it's design. Doubt we will cruise on this ship again. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2017
We had two weeks to choose a cruise to somewhere we had not been. The Koningsdam itinerary fit. When I say it is COLD, it is just that. We live where it is cold, so we were ready to get warm! Koningsdam keeps the ship frigid. The cabin ... Read More
We had two weeks to choose a cruise to somewhere we had not been. The Koningsdam itinerary fit. When I say it is COLD, it is just that. We live where it is cold, so we were ready to get warm! Koningsdam keeps the ship frigid. The cabin has a thermostat. We kept it on MAX. 2 upper decks have open air, so at those places it was at least warm as the outdoors. B.B. King is their headliner. For 95% of their stuff they are barely above rap. Not good. Stage entertainers are a mix. The juggler should stick with juggling. His German accent was so thick he was not understandable. He indicated that he was gay. That was too much information as he got a bit too 'out' about it. The 'real' comedian was brilliant, but his delivery was WAY off. It didn't work. A comedic piano player was excellent, but his jokes were pretty lame. The piano stuff was excellent.The singers and dancers were good on their first show, but mimicked playing their instruments (RUBBER SYMBOLS). String players were limited to long haired stuff and flopped. Computer guy: poor.The headline singer is VERY experienced, as in Madonna and Cher, if you get the drift. The last show was Musicology. Simply fantastic. As good a show as any you will see on or off a ship. The show room is covered with electronic lights and is fabulous when used as designed. Food is just OK. Steak is tough. Most chow is flavorless. ANY chain restaurant food is better. Pinnacle Grille is different. TOP food and served with penache. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
The excursions were second class. do not use HAL for them. find another source if you can. in particular the st maarten and st Thomas ones were bad. San Juan was just OK. Internet did not work (a friend had to get a refund). WiFi is a ... Read More
The excursions were second class. do not use HAL for them. find another source if you can. in particular the st maarten and st Thomas ones were bad. San Juan was just OK. Internet did not work (a friend had to get a refund). WiFi is a joke. If you are not a four or five star mariner forget about any chance at restaurant reservations. Onboard tours were lacking. The one kitchen tour was rushed. There were no others to sign up for ahead of time on the website. No library onboard and the gift shop did not sell books! And the website did not warn you about this. there is not even a book about the ship or HA's history. The cabins, food, staff were fine but not my best experience overall. The movies by the pool were nice. This ship needs a management do over. Profit is all that matters here. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
This was an 11 day cruise We chose this ship because it was a new ship, loved the ports and always wanted to try Holland America. We had been in the Caribbean and this had new ports that we had not seen. The ship is beautiful, the ... Read More
This was an 11 day cruise We chose this ship because it was a new ship, loved the ports and always wanted to try Holland America. We had been in the Caribbean and this had new ports that we had not seen. The ship is beautiful, the artwork very interesting it is an easy ship to navigate, We had sailed before on other lines and of course eager to compare, The cabin was very nice, bathroom excellent with a real nice shower. We had an aft cabin and we were worried about the movement. The aft cabin was very nice giving you a better view than just the verandah. Still felt some movements but we were not bothered by it Definitively a little more rocky than midship. Staff was very nice and courteous. We did not like as much the pools finding them small and surprise one of them was occupied by children preteen , Also they put a volleyball net on the pool that took the whole pool, hard to swim. They are 2 pools so you can go to the next one but they were small. This only occurred one time Very easy to get chairs that was very nice.We were expecting excellent dining. We did not find this. The food was good but not superior. One of us is a vegetarian could have been healthier choice and more vegetarian options. We had purchased the signature beverage packet, they push the drinks and on one occasion we were charged an extra for a superior wine without our knowledge. The front desk fixed this but that was annoying. No live band in the theater, What a shame a beautiful theater with recorded music. The entertainment on the ship (not the shows) were excellent BB king was great and the 2 pianists We loved the piano bar. The guests were a bit older than our previous cruises and we are in our mid sixties. We probably would try Holland America again but our Experience with celebrity cruises had been so great that our next one is a celebrity. It really depends on what you are looking for. We want a little livelier atmosphere without being too noisy. We gave an average rating due to the food, the absence of the band in the shows, a little too quiet. Read Less
37 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
OK....No BS....We have always cruised on HAL..PERIOD!! Cost more but Worth it... I am 62, My Wife is 65. Started with HAL back in 2003. First cruise was to Alaska. All others have been to the Caribbean. Were from the Great ... Read More
OK....No BS....We have always cruised on HAL..PERIOD!! Cost more but Worth it... I am 62, My Wife is 65. Started with HAL back in 2003. First cruise was to Alaska. All others have been to the Caribbean. Were from the Great Northwest...OK Oregon. I would suggest flying in the night before depending on where you live. For us Oregonian's it takes 7 hrs. via Southwest to Ft. Lauderdale. TAKE a taxi from your hotel to the Ship. Worth the money. No hassles, No other people. Direct and stress free which we all want to be. The Koningsdam is one BEAUTIFUL ship (as all HAL Dam ships). And no I am not writing this after a "cruise high"). The Koningsdam is only 40' longer than the Eurodam. Has roughly 700 more people. This was not and issue for myself nor my wife. After our first cruise to Alaska which we booked an interior stateroom WE will Never book another interior stateroom and only a Veranda room. Fresh air and your outside. Also book the Port side not the Starboard side. Going South you are able to see the Sunrise and the islands you will be visiting. Going North you can sip a glass of wine and see the Sunsets. Very Beautiful!.... OK back to the Dam ship...We have no kids so the Lido Pool is where we hung. If you are a smoker or cigar professional the Port side is where you go. IF not any of the above then their is an area on the Starboard side for you. Also as of 2017 you CANNOT smoke on your Veranda. (Kinda a bummer being we like to have a glass of wine and a smoke) Pool is smaller than the other Dam ships but does have two SMALL Jacuzzi's. Excellent basketball court and shuffleboard court. We stayed on the 6th floor better known as the Mozart level (forward/port). Was a truck to the buffet and back pool located aft. But was fun walking from the room (:. On the way Aft you walk by the mid pool, Spa, Dive In, and lots of bars plus the NY Deli which serves specialty pizzas. The new stage is spectacular. Highly recommend. Especially when the musicians from Lincoln Stage perform live along with the movie. Drinks are $8 bucks and the drink of the day is $7. Bucket of beer - 5 (16oz Bud etc is $26 and 5 - 12 oz others" are $22). Entertainment was very good. DO NOT MISS THE BB KING ENTERTAINMENT. I do not drink coffee but my wife liked the Grand Café. The Crow's nest is to die for. Great views and Happy people. Toilets in the room Suck as they all do on any ship unless you can afford the suites. Food is always good at the buffet and on average I had my meal along with my wife within 3 minutes. We mostly had assigned seating every night in the dining room, but did pay an up charge for all the specialty restaurants. Well worth it. ALL sorts of options!! If nothing was their for our pleasure then the "chefs" would make it for us... SERVICE is/was Excellent, as always.... Half Moon Key was Supporp...as always. This is always our best island to visit !! Shore excursions Always book through HAL. If your late for the boat..."see ya later" UNLESS you book through HAL. You will be not left and the boat will wait for you...Due to your excursion issues not you personally diverting.. Wish we were on any DAM ship now!! Enjoy and I will leave you with this thought.... You live only once, Enjoy while you can, Stay positive, Believe 3/4's of what anyone tells you and Just be you! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2017
My prior cruise experiences were all on small ships -- two with Lindblad/National Geographic (120 passengers max), two with (now defunct) Cruise West (110 passengers max), and one on the Mississippi (ca. 400 passengers). I traveled with ... Read More
My prior cruise experiences were all on small ships -- two with Lindblad/National Geographic (120 passengers max), two with (now defunct) Cruise West (110 passengers max), and one on the Mississippi (ca. 400 passengers). I traveled with my sister and brother-in-law, who are HAL veterans (7 or 8 cruises on a variety of ships). We had never been to the islands on this cruise, so it was all new for us. Shore excursions: I purchased one for each port, as I was eager to learn as much as I could about the islands. Most were good value, with one glaring exception. In Charlotte Amalie my sister and I opted for the Colonial St. Thomas and Recommended Shopping. We paid $49.95 each for what amounted to a bus ride to the top of the hill. There we were dropped off to hear a spiel by a Blackbeard character and told to walk down the hill to the shops. I thought this was quite a rip off. Among my favorites were the walking tour of Fort-de-France (Martinique) and the four hours of beach time we had at Half Moon Cay. Dining: I had heard great things about HAL's food. Well, I was quite disappointed. Multiple times I ordered fish in the Main Dining room and it arrived overcooked and mushy. The last night I ordered the prime rib, but it was inedible -- lacking flavor and dry as sawdust. Three nights we ate in specialty restaurants -- Sel de Mer, Tamarind, and Pinnacle. Paying the premium was worth it to get great food. On the two "gala" nights we found that the Main Dining room was overwhelmed. Both nights we had to get a pager and return to the bar to wait for a table. Staff: Excellent! They want very much to please the passengers and do a superior job. From the stewards to the bartenders, they are terrific. Buy, buy, buy. I felt that HAL had their hands in my pockets all the time. Whether it was to visit the casino or buy a watch, they always seemed to be marketing something. That turned me off. Entertainment. The highlight was the all-female piano quintet that played almost nightly on the Lincoln Center Stage. They had never played together before November 2016 and were quite talented. Their programs were varied and lasted about 40-45 minutes. They were young, enthusiastic, and gifted. By contrast, the shows on the main stage were quite uneven. A dance evening was outstanding, but another night I heard a comic who was definitely cringe-worthy. Awful. The best show I saw featured the above-mentioned piano quintet, performing with the house band, to provide the accompaniment to a BBC nature program on the Arctic and Antarctic. Superb! Overall: It was an enjoyable time, but I won't be cruising with HAL again. I'm much more comfortable on a small ship without all the glitz and glamor. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
This was the first time sailing with HAL. I have sailed with many other lines and this was my 15th cruise. We chose this ship because we planned a family vacation with cousins who preferred HAL above others. Me and my wife chose a ... Read More
This was the first time sailing with HAL. I have sailed with many other lines and this was my 15th cruise. We chose this ship because we planned a family vacation with cousins who preferred HAL above others. Me and my wife chose a balcony state room and were very pleased with the room including a spacious glassed enclosed shower stall, (the first I have ever had on a cruise). The service was excellent and the food was great as well. The entertainment was ok but nothing special . The only bar entertainment we liked was the BB King Blues Band. The rest of the entertainment was more classical in nature and seemed to appeal to an older high brow crowd. The shows were weak as well unless you like jugglers and magicians. The average age of our fellow cruisers seemed to be 70+ so if you prefer a more diverse cruise, this ship would not be attractive to you. Overall, we liked the cruise and the ship was one of the most beautiful I have been on. Cleanliness of the ship was superior. The Lido food market was very busy and confusing at times since the food was served in a continuous line on both sides of the ship and separate food stations by cuisine, it made it hard to find the food you liked. I would recommend this ship for the older cruisers but there is nothing on board for the younger cruisers. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We chose this Southern Caribbean cruise because we liked the ports of call. We also liked that this is a new ship in her first year. All in all, I would say that we enjoyed the cruise. Since the ship is new, it was very nice. Being ... Read More
We chose this Southern Caribbean cruise because we liked the ports of call. We also liked that this is a new ship in her first year. All in all, I would say that we enjoyed the cruise. Since the ship is new, it was very nice. Being Holland America, it was predominantly seniors but we are seniors so we didn't mind that. We had an inside cabin that was nicely furnished and had adequate storage but it was the smallest cabin imaginable and our smallest cabin yet. It had a queen or two twin beds, two tiny nightstands and a desk with a hassock on wheels shoved under it. That's it for furniture. It had no chairs or couch or table. If we had ordered room service, one person could have eaten at the desk and other other seated on the bed. Not good! So, we were quite disappointed in the size of the room Other shipmates had balcony rooms and said they were small too. Another thing I did not like is that the buffet dining area was in the middle of a floor and the pools at either end. People going back and forth to get to the pool and had to walk through all of the people trying to get food and carry it to their table. It made that area too congested and didn't seem like a good plan. We enjoyed the entertainment, the room steward did a good job (except there was some mold in the shower!) the food was good. Dining room service was spotty. We had open seating. I think Holland America has assigned too many tables to each waiter. They were definitely hustling and working hard but on some occasions service suffered. We did enjoy the cruise but I am not sure I would recommend the ship because of the size of the cabins. The next cruise that we take, I will do more homework on the size of the cabin that's for sure! Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We chose this cruise because of it's port intensive itinerary, not because we were excited about traveling on the new ship. It is pricier to sail on the new kid on the block but our son and his wife had never been to the southern ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of it's port intensive itinerary, not because we were excited about traveling on the new ship. It is pricier to sail on the new kid on the block but our son and his wife had never been to the southern islands, so we were left with no choice. We are unabashedly fans of the Nieuw Amsterdam and Eurodam and hoped that the Koningsdam equaled or bettered the Vista class ships, but we felt that it did not. As soon as we entered the ship, I felt that the ceilings were much lower, giving a slight claustrophobic feel. After we unpacked, we went straight up to the Retreat area where we had booked a Family Cabana, as we have for the last half dozen cruises on the NA and Eurodam. The Family Cabanas on those ship are HUGE -- they contain two double loungers, tables and chairs to seat four AND two larger chairs for relaxation. Imagine our surprise/dismay and angst when we were shown our Family Cabana and it was HALF the size (or smaller) than the ones on the Vista class ships! We were stunned. Only TWO single loungers fit inside (even though the description says FOUR LOUNGERS), along with two nice chairs and a small table in between them (think coffee table height, not dining height). There was no way that our party of four adults could actually relax and feel comfortable in this space ... certainly not the way we had on the other ships' family cabanas. PLUS, the price of the rental was the same! With a new ship like this, one would think everything would be bigger and better ... Nope. We were extremely disappointed in the cabana, but not the normal cabana experience. Our cabana stewards were excellent all week and they, too, felt badly about the sub-par cabana. The Assistant F&B Manager told us that many people who have experienced the other family cabanas complain when they see what they have been rented. I will add my agreement to those who write about the odd angle of the toilet in the staterooms. To save a few inches of space, they have "jammed" the toilet into the room in such a way that "sidesaddle" becomes a word that is rarely used in that area! The Koningsdam has many features that their other ships don't: Blend (pay $79 to blend your own wine), Notes (pay to blend your scotch), Culinary Art Center (pay $39 for dinner), Gelato Bar (pay for a cup of gelato). In other words, there is a profit center nearly everywhere you turn. To be fair, the Dutch Café is new and we really enjoyed the sandwiches and other food items (including desserts) that are complimentary. The coffee, wine and beer is for sale there, making it somewhat of a profit center. The small World Stage theater is puzzling. The "stage" is at floor level with the guests in the front -- there is no elevated stage as on the other ships. To make it more intimate (or to save valuable space?) it only seats 660 on a ship that holds 2600 people. To try to accommodate as many as possible, there are three shows a night. The two early shows are in demand and people go early early to get seats. The late show then is under-attended, making for low energy audiences for comedians and variety acts -- no very nice. I agree that there is very little to do onboard, especially sea days. We attend every trivia event but there isn't a lot more that interests us -- no ping pong tournaments or basketball games excite us! I've heard they are eliminating the position of the young woman who usually assists in the culinary events and hosts things like origami, etc. because they are bringing in the America's Test Kitchen crew. I can only guess that there will be even less side activities as a result. We are HAL cheerleaders but we finally have to admit that the food in the MDR seems to have slipped. We did not plan to dine in the Pinnacle Grill this time (Tamarind and Sel de Mer were the only ones we planned on) but the menus in the MDR were so uninspired on several nights that we even went to Canelleto rather than dine one more time in the MDR. By the way, we were very pleasantly surprised by the offerings in Canelleto! (The same old desserts in the PG are disappointing -- time for some new selections.) The ports (we had been to all of them in the past but our son and his wife had not. The only one we had not been to was Antigua -- and the high winds caused HAL to cancel the stop there -- no complaints -- safety first): St. Maarten -- Son and wife took catamaran excursion -- said it was great. St. Lucia -- Son and wife took aerial tram through rain forest -- said it was amazing Barbados -- Son and wife went to Harrison Caves, where you ride a tram through the caves -- said it was very amazing San Juan (diverted there instead of Antigua -- kudos to captain and HAL for finding a substitute port instead of making it another sea day) -- stayed on ship because we've been there so many times Martinique -- Husband and I walked around until we found a lovely French café with a view of the water. Had a great experience navigating the "no English" menu and it was our favorite time of the cruise. Son and wife took tour to various spots and enjoyed it St. Thomas -- same old, same old. The service on the ship was excellent, as always. Carson, the cruise director was great, as was the assistant cruise director, Nathan. Thanks to all members of the crew for always being the best! Having said ALL of this -- we will go back to our beloved NA and Eurodam. This ship just feels too profit oriented. I certainly don't mind any business being out to make money, just don't let me be so aware of it at every turn! Oh! Just one thing about disembarkation: We used the app "Mobile Pass" to make customs and immigration easier. We got off the ship at 7:45 a.m. and was told that the Mobile Pass line wouldn't be open until 8! If you use the app, you do not have to fill out that little blue form. But if you can't use the Mobile Pass app/line, you are "in trouble" if you don't have a back up handwritten form to hand in! Read Less
Koningsdam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 0.0
Dining 4.5 0.0
Entertainment 4.5 0.0
Public Rooms 4.5 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 5.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0

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