Greetings from aboard the MS Amsterdam in port in San Francisco.
Time flies and I realized that it had been ten years since I last stepped foot aboard a Holland America Line vessel. I am super excited to share with you how the product has evolved over the last decade.
Built in 2000 at Finccantieri yard in Venice, this vessel is considered a small ship today. Only 1380 guests get to sail aboard this fourth of the Rotterdam class ships together with 650 crew members.
Every detail of the vessel which Holland calls a “flagship” is meticulously taken care of. Over the years fabrics, carpets and amenities have been updated and the tech features aboard are state of the art. From the PBS’s partnership with America’s Test Kitchen (See pictures above) to entertainment from Lincoln center and BB Kings, Holland has upped the game in premium cruising while maintaining its sense of tradition and style that appeals to a more mature clientele.
Cozy lounges invite guests to relax and who would say no to a nice dinner at the intimate Pinnacle Grill (picture above) with its steak and sea food menu (small copay applies).
Cuisine is always a matter of taste in my opinion and most cruise lines strive to provide excellence in this area for a wide range of pallets. That said, our sample lunch aboard Amsterdam’s 2 storey main dining room was beyond reproach.
From a lovely shrimp and avocado ceviche (not pictured here) to petrale sole with beurre blanc and zucchini fritters, followed by a scrumptious desert of meringue, the meal was creative, beautifully flavored and pleasingly presented.
Another aspect of cruising in the premium and lower price segments are beverage prices as they are typically not included in the package. Again, Holland America Line is delivering value here as the above list shows. Note that during this fall’s booking promotion Explore 4, you can get the beverage package as a perk. (Ping me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details).
Outdoor as well as indoor pools ( with sliding glass roof) allow for usage in any type of weather which is super useful in cold and rainy conditions. Add to that a gym and a spa area with hot tubs, sauna and steam room as well as therapeutic hot tile loungers and you can round out your trip comfortably.
Accommodations are important aspects of a ships overall value to clients. This is an area where Holland shines as cabins are larger than average. The color scheme is warm and comfortable but on the traditional side. From an outside stateroom with window (pictured above) to the comfy Vista Suite with full balcony, this vessel offers quality accommodations that have stood the test of time for everyone.
I left the vessel re-invigorated about the value of smaller ships and with a great reminder of Holland’s traditional yet impeccable quality and history.
Why sail on Amsterdam? Small size of the vessel, comfort and coziness, great cuisine and all-weather equipment to make the most of any voyage. So ship ahoy- plan your next cruise now!
Stand by for more adventures to come!