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HAL ships visits - lots of dates/locations available

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    #91
    Originally posted by amberseaside View Post
    We went aboard MS Ryandam at Dover this last Sunday, lots of overheard comments were that it was much nicer on board than it seemed from the outside. What came over as superior to any ship we have travelled on was the wonderful friendliness of the staff on board, even the stewards going hell for leather to redo cabins had smiles for everyone. OK the cynic in me says excellent PR work but even some of the crew going ashore waved at our car as they walked along the roadside as we were exiting the car park. It's not a show, they really ARE that nice.

    Most cabins seemed refurbished though I didnt care too much for the overbearing colour scheme, a little drab and old fashioned and the internal curtains seperating the bed area on outside cabins made me feel claustrophobic even drawn back and I certainly would not consider an outside window cabin with the bed in queen configuration far less room than on Oriana for example andset in window style meant less light. I suppose we are used to the restrained decor on Holland America. It meant the glitz and glam of Azura was OTT for me.


    Personally, I felt all cabins were inferior to the ones on Azura, have not come across a balcony cabin yet to equal that for feeling of space, superb walk in wardrobe area and feeling of brightness. Again, I am used to these cabins and thought them quite spacious, equal to the Azura ones I saw.BIgger bathrooms plus baths but I prefer larger cabin. However, the balconies were large and seemed to feel a lot more private than newer ships and real teak better than this new plastic stuff.

    Big negative, although an intermittent smoker myself I would never dream of smoking in a cabin and some of them reeked of cigarette smoke, my husband being a non smoker said he found it overpowering. I agree this is an area that needs looking at although we've not come across any cabins with aproblem...so far.Also being a smaller ship you couldnt escape the smell of cooking from the galleys on lower decks, maybe less noticeable at sea? Lunch was excellent, though I do wish the American lines served better vegetables, 2 courgette slices dont help the 5 a day [Americans don't seem to like the veggies as we do but you can always ask for more...and get it] and I thought the fruit soup interesting but a little like melted ice cream.

    I liked the smaller feel to the ship though overall though a bit "glitzy" and old fashioned and some of the public areas showed signs of wear. If I could take the cabins and brightness and clean feel of Azura and replace that into the size of the this ship then it would be a good combination however their "list" prices are high. Seemed to have a good angle on sea day activities and entertainment strangly enough, I think HAL are not very good on the entertainment side on offer and I think one would avoid the rowdy night time elements that are creeping onto P&O here. People on our lunch table said it would make them consider a return to the smaller vessels and it did feel like a ship not a floating holiday resort.

    Overall - would we sail on Ryandam .... No! Would we try one of HA's newer vessels .... probably, at the right price! Could we have all we want from a ship? Would imagine on some of the premium cruise lines yes at a price though and would we put HA in the 5* category, on what we saw on service highly likely, on the ship itself re rooms, cabins etc etc not quite The Ryndam is not marketed as a 5* ship.
    I have sailed on the Ryndam a couple of times and loved it. At the time, we didn't think of it as small, as one member mentioned but I suppose it is in relation to the mega ships around.
    We liked it.
    Last edited by Mrs M; 26th July 2011, 12:00 PM. Reason: can't spell

    Comment


      #92
      I thought the Ryndam outside and balcony cabins were larger than Azura (although balconies not as big as those on C deck on Ventura/Azura) and when set up in twin configuration we definitely felt like there was a bit more space than on Azura/Ventura/Oceana. Because there is usually 4 of us in a cabin we prefer a slightly larger cabin even if this is at the expense of a slightly smaller balcony. They seem to have some pretty spacious inside/outside cabins on some of the newer ships - around 200 sq ft.

      I quite liked the cabin colour scheme as it seemed quite understated/tasteful, but I can see it is more 'gloomy' than Azura because it is more brown/beige.

      I'd happily book a trip with HAL at the right price!

      Comment


        #93
        Thank you all who have done the visits and reported back.
        We would have loved to have done one, but sadly not this year.
        A great way of getting more custom. I do hope we can manage one (if they do the same next year)
        But, with all that you have said and the photo's I am sure that with the right itinerary and price... HAL, here we come.
        sigpic*Carol M*

        Comment


          #94
          In reply to the poster who said Ryandam was not marketed as a 5* ship I think they should give their UK Marketing director who gave the welcome on board speech and patter a slapped wrist then as it was heard that referred to Holland America as a 5* cruise line hence my comment.

          Its lovely to see other peoples feedback on ones ideas though, shows what a very diverse bunch of cruisers we are. Even a couple we spoke to had a major difference on a cruise they had taken on the Eurodam, one loved it and the other totally disliked it calling it a bland ship. You cant please everyone all the time
          Last edited by amberseaside; 26th July 2011, 10:24 PM.

          Comment


            #95
            Originally posted by amberseaside View Post
            In reply to the poster who said Ryandam was not marketed as a 5* ship I think they should give their UK Marketing director who gave the welcome on board speech and patter a slapped wrist then as it was heard that referred to Holland America as a 5* cruise line hence my comment.

            Its lovely to see other peoples feedback on ones ideas though, shows what a very diverse bunch of cruisers we are. Even a couple we spoke to had a major difference on a cruise they had taken on the Eurodam, one loved it and the other totally disliked it calling it a bland ship. You cant please everyone all the time
            from my visit yesterday on the Prinsendam,I would suggest that HAL are offering a very good cruising experience,tho their prices seem just a little on the high side.

            jim

            Comment


              #96
              Originally posted by amberseaside View Post
              In reply to the poster who said Ryandam was not marketed as a 5* ship I think they should give their UK Marketing director who gave the welcome on board speech and patter a slapped wrist then as it was heard that referred to Holland America as a 5* cruise line hence my comment.

              Its lovely to see other peoples feedback on ones ideas though, shows what a very diverse bunch of cruisers we are. Even a couple we spoke to had a major difference on a cruise they had taken on the Eurodam, one loved it and the other totally disliked it calling it a bland ship. You cant please everyone all the time
              No slapped wrist. They have 5* ships...and I haven't been on the ship since it's overhaul.
              Last edited by Mrs M; 27th July 2011, 05:39 AM.

              Comment


                #97
                Originally posted by jimtheoldsalt, felixstowe View Post
                from my visit yesterday on the Prinsendam,I would suggest that HAL are offering a very good cruising experience,tho their prices seem just a little on the high side.

                jim
                On the monday visit I noticed in the ships daily paper that first sitting for dinner was ..entry 1730 dinner starts at 1745 hours,have read the brochureand it seems to be standard throughout the fleet,that is much to early for me

                jim

                Comment


                  #98
                  Originally posted by Mrs M View Post
                  No slapped wrist. They have 5* ships...and I haven't been on the ship since it's overhaul.
                  5* ships,maybe but the prices are 5* looked at a 14 day trip from Tilbury to iceland ,faeros,,scotland and return to Amsterdam..
                  inside cabin £2711 per person.Thats high.

                  jim

                  Comment


                    #99
                    Thanks to Royston for the link to HAL for the Ship visits .Spent a most enjoyable day yesterday looking over the Ryndam, great to compare it with the larger ships in the Hals fleet. Good lunch, good company.

                    A smaller Ship still has a lot to offer, as they can get into Ports the larger vessels cannot enter so many itineries are more interesting.The rooms were well laid out and adequate and clean. Nice teak flooring on the balconies and wrap around deck. For a 17 year old Ship it is still looking good.

                    All the staff we came into contact with were exceptionally friendly and helpful.

                    Would I now travel on a smaller ship such as this Yes if the price was right.
                    sigpic
                    Wen

                    Comment


                      Great photos Jim. cannot wait till we are on our day visit when she docks in Greenock in Sept.

                      we were invited for a day visit on Eurodam when she was docked in South Queensferry in June but it was cancelled due to a 'virus'.
                      don't want to work, just want to cruise.

                      Comment


                        Re Prisendam visit at Greenock on 6th September. Has anyone received details of the exact meeting place and time? We have our registration and confirmation e-mails but nothing else and Tuesday is fast approaching!

                        Comment


                          we were on the Prinsendam for the day visit when it was docked in Greenock. we had a lovely day despite the rain and wind.

                          we couldn't view any of the cabins as the ship was full. we have never been on a ship that small before. it had such an intimate feel which was nice. the decor was understated and tastefull. it was small but perfectly formed. surprisingly the library was very big for the size of ship. bigger than libraries on much larger ships. the 3 course meal was beautifully presented and tasted superb. I had a look at the prices of the ships tours and found them very expensive eg $60 for a coach only trip to Glasgow, many were over $100 and even $200pp. the price of drinks were on par with Celebrity and RCI.

                          despite the rain and wind there were at least 3 pax getting off the ship with shorts!! now thats optimistic.

                          thanks Royston for letting us know about these ships visits. when looking for a cruise in future we will also look at HAL, thanks to this visit.
                          Last edited by Issyalex, Glasgow; 10th September 2011, 10:52 PM.
                          don't want to work, just want to cruise.

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by Issyalex, Glasgow View Post
                            we were on the Prinsendam for the day visit when it was docked in Greenock. we had a lovely day despite the rain and wind.

                            we couldn't view any of the cabins as the ship was full. we have never been on a ship that small before. it had such an intimate feel which was nice. the decor was understated and tastefull. it was small but perfectly formed. surprisingly the library was very big for the size of ship. bigger than libraries on much larger ships. the 3 course meal was beautifully presented and tasted superb. I had a look at the prices of the ships tours and found them very expensive eg $60 for a coach only trip to Glasgow, many were over $100 and even $200pp. the price of drinks were on par with Celebrity and RCI.

                            despite the rain and wind there were at least 3 pax getting off the ship with shorts!! now thats optimistic.

                            thanks Royston for letting us know about these ships visits. when looking for a cruise in future we will also look at HAL, thanks to this visit.
                            Glad you had a great time Issyalex, we were so sorry to miss it. I hope we get another chance to go.
                            sigpic
                            Tiggertom
                            shaken, not purred

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by Issyalex, Glasgow View Post
                              we were on the Prinsendam for the day visit when it was docked in Greenock. we had a lovely day despite the rain and wind.

                              we couldn't view any of the cabins as the ship was full. we have never been on a ship that small before. it had such an intimate feel which was nice. the decor was understated and tastefull. it was small but perfectly formed. surprisingly the library was very big for the size of ship. bigger than libraries on much larger ships. the 3 course meal was beautifully presented and tasted superb. I had a look at the prices of the ships tours and found them very expensive eg $60 for a coach only trip to Glasgow, many were over $100 and even $200pp. the price of drinks were on par with Celebrity and RCI.

                              despite the rain and wind there were at least 3 pax getting off the ship with shorts!! now thats optimistic.

                              thanks Royston for letting us know about these ships visits. when looking for a cruise in future we will also look at HAL, thanks to this visit.
                              Hi Issy. We were on Prinsendam yesterday at Tilbury. I agree with your views, we thought she was a lovely ship. We were also lucky enough to view a variety of cabins and were very impressed with the size of them and that most of them had a bath.

                              We were not very impressed with the Rotterdam when we visited her in Dover but the Prinsendam appealed to us in every way and we would certainly consider sailing on her if the itinerary appealed to us.
                              Jill

                              Comment


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