A Cut Above

Koningsdam Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 32

Overall rating:

4.4 out of 5
Verified Review
Koningsdam

11 Night Southern Caribbean Wayfarer (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip)

Sail date: January 24, 2018

Ship: Koningsdam

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 6041

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Review summary

A great ship, great food and service. But terrible procedure for disembarkation.

Embarkation

4 out of 5
Check-in at the pier was quick and easy. As is usual, once on the ship the Lido buffet was overcrowded and had no available tables. After decades of this problem, you'd think they would devise a better way to disperse the crowds and alleviate the congestion. How about opening more than just one dining option for embarkation lunch?

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
Food in all venues was excellent. Choices and food preparation in regard to variety and flavors was definitely better than other cruise lines we've most often sailed with.

Grand Dutch Café

5 out of 5

As an alternative to the usually crowded Lido buffet or New York Deli & Pizza, the Grand Dutch Cafe was never crowded (we were always late lunchers) and the service staff was great! They were always pleasant and, can you believe it, they were Dutch! Kudos for hiring staff to go with the culture of this themed venue!

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5
As one might expect, activities and enthusiasm are a bit underwhelming on Holland America. But honestly, that's one reason we chose this cruise. Trivia and silly "game shows" are about our speed these days. On the other hand, if you want an extended vacation to hone your skills on the basketball court or perfect your shuffleboard slides, you won't have to fight for time on the court, and it is a nice facility with little wear 'n tear.

Entertainment

5 out of 5
The singer/dancer shows here were definitely a huge step above others. The show "Musicology" is definitely woth seeing. The excellent choreography and dancing combined with the wrap-around lighted walls create a spectacular show! This is not the same tired, over-done, standard musical song-and-dance review that we've seen umpteen times on other ships. It's original, it's fresh, and it's stunning. As fir the comedy and guest entertainer shows, well, yes, they're a bit predictable and "been there, seen that." The BB King blues band was great. Way too loud, but very good.

Service and Staff

4 out of 5
Most all the staff in dining venues were great. The only downfall was service staff at the New York Deli & Pizza -- not very attentive or friendly. They were actually not that different than most staff at non-dining room venues on other cruises, but in comparison to the great, friendly service in all other venues on this ship, it was a sore spot.

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
Ship still has the new feeling. The layout is a bit odd in some areas. Especially on Lido deck and above, you have to figure out where to go up, down, port, or starboard to get from one end to the other. There are too many dead ends and locked doors. Also, the entrance to the main restaurant is right at the elevators on decks 2and 3 aft, causing congestion every evening. If you're a stair person like us and your stateroom is aft, if you happen to be on deck 2 at 5:30pm and want to walk up to your stateroom, good luck getting around the hordes of people waiting in line for "my time" dining.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Actual space in the stateroom is fairly typical, but storage space is better than most other cruise line's ships, as is typical of HAL. The bathroom is absolutely the best! On this ship, instead of having the smallish bathtub/shower, they've put a walk-in shower - an excellent design change! If you're tired of taking showers on other non-HAL ships where your butt barely fits in the shower space, you gotta take a cruise on this ship!

Ship tip

The options for more sophisticated entertainment is a real hilight of this ship. The Lincoln Center stage is a really nice alternative to the standard piano bar and traditional band options.

Ports of call

Ft. Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida

4 out of 5

Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (Private Island)

5 out of 5

San Juan, Puerto Rico

5 out of 5

St. John's, Antigua

5 out of 5

Bridgetown, Barbados

4 out of 5

Pointe-A-Pitre, Guadeloupe

4 out of 5

Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas

5 out of 5

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

4 out of 5

Grand Turk Island

3 out of 5

Disembarkation

4 out of 5
Disembarkation was surprisingly slow, I assume because there were so many other large ships in port the same day. There were only 4 immigration lines for the 2,500+ passengers. Also, beware being quarantined on the day of disembarkation. Our traveling friends were quarantined on the last day, and as a result they made them get off the ship before everyone else, whereas we had late disembarkation. I understand that HAL doesn't want to expose other passengers to potential illness, but there was NO place for them to rest or wait away from the crowds once they disembarked! So, our friends who were not feeling great and potentially contagious, had to sit on a bench near the taxi stand, in the sun, for more than two hours, amidst all the other disembarking passengers. That's a big FAIL on Holland America's part.
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