February 2016 - Westerdam to Caribbean - Eastern
This was my first cruise with Holland America Cruise Line. Let's start with the cabin. I had a ocean view cabin and while the cabin was about the size I was expecting, but the tv was tiny. I would guess it was a 20 inch screen. You had to see very close to even watch anything. The beds were actually comfortable. Kinda right in the middle of firm and plush. My friend just sailed on Norwegian and said the beds were so hard him and his wife had to put 14 pillows down on the mattress and put a top sheet on in order to sleep at night. Now the bathroom. It has a small tub which is fine especially if you have children with you but I really didn't like the shower curtain due to the fact that the tub is narrow so I was constantly pushing the curtain out with my arm. The toilet is in totally the wrong place. It's angled towards the bathtub so if you are tall or large (or both), your knees hit the tub! Now for some good news, The crew were all very friendly. The best stand out as far as crew is Andy Knox who is the ship's Show Host. He is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet anywhere. He's always on top of things and has an awesome speaking voice while conducting the entertainment events. He deserves a raise for all the hard work he does. He handles several events per day but is never late and is always looking nice and is prepared. I'm bad with names but the casino workers especially were very friendly. The dealers were all very cool and experienced. The waitstaff was quite attentive. Now the food. The food was a little below par with Royal Caribbean save for the Vista Dining Room. That experience was on par with most cruise lines. But the Vista Buffet was no where near as tasty as the choices I've had on other cruise ships. They say the average guest gains 10 lbs on a week long cruise? I gained 0 pounds. Also, the 24 hour room service choices need to be upgraded. The choices are ok but not that great. Lastly I'll talk about the entertainment. The shows were good and not too long. The standout of all the shows is a pair of identical twin brothers called Synergy Violins. Jeff and Steve Neil are expert electric violinists who perform a fusion of classical, rock, and pop music with as much energy as a nuclear reactor. They were top-notch Vegas level talent. Holland America had just hired them and boy did they make the right decision. I strongly suggest you go to their website (google the name of the group) and check them out. They really love what they do and it's not just a job for them. They happily meet all the guests and are true professionals and good guys. Well, I hope this review helps you make your vacation a good one!