Nieuw Statendam Cruise Review by teamflames
- Sail Date: April 2019
- Destination: Eastern Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Standard Interior Stateroom
Overall we had a great cruise, the weather was mostly great, the ports were new to us, HAL has benefited from having the Koningsdam before this ship, awesome music and entertainment and a great variety of dining options.
Fellow passengers were much younger than a normal Hal crowd with loads of families. The cruise felt very busy but the overall vibe was very positive.
We embarked in FLL for the first time. We arrived a little later than we normally do in the early afternoon and were on the ship very quickly. We had lunch in the mdr where the ugly problems from previous HAL cruises quickly reared their head ie the laboriously slow “sommeliers”. After eating the first 2 courses I left the restaurant and got our own drinks by the time I returned the sommelier was only just arriving at the table to take our order. A complaint to the manager ensured it was much quicker every time following which was good but just to be safe we still took a glass with us. Even worse than the slow ordering is the fact that if you have the drinks package your wine has to be collected from a bar and makes the process even slower, they are the only cruise line we have come across that make it this difficult. As with other HAL cruises food in the mdr was inconsistent but overall a good experience.
We loved the other variety of food onboard, stand alone pizza bar, burger bar and the Dutch cafe were all very high quality. The lido is very good, the bread was top class as were the salads. We love that they serve you making it healthier for everyone.
The ship is new and overall we really liked the design. Music themed modern art adorns the ship and makes it interesting to explore. A promenade and jogging track made outdoor exercise easy. The theatre with 270 degree screens was great and the new dance shows were awesome. The comedian was very funny as well. There are 2 pools, the aft pool is adult only and was a nice area (except for the smoking) but the policing of children was inconsistent. The highlight is the music venues. Duelling pianos, rock band, BbKings blues band and classical group made for amazing variety and all were high quality. One area of the ship that was a bit of a disappointment was the crows nest, we thought the one on the Koningsdam was disappointing but this is even worse. It is trying to be the explorations cafe, shorex desk, bar area and meeting room. There is not enough seating and it seemed to attract families with young small noisy children.
Hal is not known for a lot of activities which we normally enjoy, there were a couple of trivia’s but not a lot else of interest to us but with such nice weather and other activities such as table tennis, shuffleboard etc there was plenty to do onboard.
Service - Hal regulars always rave about Hal service but personally we find it overrated. That is not to say it is poor just that it is average. Guest relations were again poor. Our stateroom attendant was friendly but just average. Waiters and bar staff were efficient.
One issue we had was when a very drunken passenger threatened me, bar staff has already cut him off and called security but they didn’t arrive in time and surprisingly no one followed up the issue with me despite taking my details. When I queried this later I was simply told the passenger was dealt with - strange that I saw him as drunk again the following day.
We bought the drinks package which we think is good value with bottled water, nice coffees and great cocktails. Wine choices are very limited though.
We missed Half Moon Cay due to weather which was disappointing but we really enjoyed Turks, Puerto Rico and St Thomas (seriously lucky as only ship in port!). Embarking and disembarking was easy.
As the cruise was expensive we only booked an interior cabin but it was very large (it seemed to be bigger than others we saw). We really liked it but there was no couch.
Overall an enjoyable cruise with high quality decor, great variety in dining and entertainment, new technology and solid service.
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