If you go to the spa be sure to bring your own slippers as they are not provided as they were on the other ships. Not sure if this is a fleet wide policy now or just on the Koningsdam? Also the lockers in the dressing room didn't lock either. They were all out of order.
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The best meatball sandwich I've ever had in the deli on deck 10, and I was told their pizza was outstanding.
Be sure to visit the Grand Dutch Cafe for delicious treats that are complimentary.
Ships are being promoted with slogans and often gimmicky "themes". The theme for Koningsdam is music - the decor throughout the ship uses musical references, and the programming of the concerts lives up to that promoted theme - no gimmick in this case! It's still a fairly new ship. I had read about "teething troubles" on early cruises, but by the time I took my cruise everything seemed to have been worked out, I recall no hiccups. While I can't comment on many items that are important to other pax ("fine" dining, alcohol service, group activities etc.), my experience was overwhelmingly positive. A minus point: The audience of the classical concerts from the Lincoln Center Stage is being bothered, often greatly, by noises from passers-by who may not be aware of the concert because they can't see across - there should be a staffer placed right there to ask them to "keep it down". And the electronic quasi-musical rings and dings from the slot machines in the nearby casino should be turned off during performances. What I don't understand is how smoking can be allowed indoors in the casino - it stinks up the concert space and passage ways far and wide. By December of 2018 the ship will be in dry dock and the location of the Lincoln Center Stage will be removed to the back of the ship - let's hope that this will take care of these issues. I happen to get really annoyed by constant background music - the cheesy pop-music type in particular (like hearing, as I did one day during a meal, what seemed like a hundred repetitions of "help me Rondo, help help me Rondo" - whoever the blasted Rondo is or was, I could have killed him or her). On recent Celebrity cruises this was a serious issue that drove me to my cabin when there was no escaping the "music" and its repetition of a very short playlist in the buffet restaurant. So I was pleased to hear that the background music in the Lido Market restaurant was mostly played at a much lower volume. Not so on sun decks of course, but to the ship's designers' credit, there was always a nook and a cranny to be found where the "music" was either distant or not audible. Do most people really want to hear loud non-stop music day-in day-out? Beats me.
Take the several sets of stairs to take in the art work. Workout at the gym!
If you get up late and the Lido Market is closed, get your breakfast bagel on Deck 11 where the pizzas and sandwiches are servies. We all enjoyed our breakfast begels.
The Tamarind restaurant was well worth the price. We highly recommend the Blend if you like wine. We really enjoyed the Spa area although the cost of the thermal pool and steam room area was expensive.
It was one of the nicest ships on which we have sailed.
Attend as many evening shows as possible, they are terrific
Be sure to see the BB King all stars and the Billboard music venue.
Do your research BEFORE you book. cruisedeckplans.com will give you information that you will not find anywhere else, for a minimal fee. Find out where your room will be, and what if anything, may be a problem with it. Your comfort in your stateroom is EVERYTHING, so be sure it's going to suit you.
I enjoyed the Windows Digital Workshop program very much. Learned a lot.
Make reservations early for cooking class and lunch in Culinary Arts if interested. I waited and it filled up for the remainder of the cruise. Movies by the pool were difficult at times as they did maintenance during the movie and you couldn't hear!
We booked our excursions with non-Holland America providers at savings of about 35%. We also used the Hop-on Hop-off buses at Bergin ans Alesund for excellent city tours- options not offered by Holland America. We bought our train tickets at Flaam directly from the railroad at substantial savings.
Try to become familiar about the ships facilities soon after getting on the ship.
make sure dining room reservations are confirmed and check to make sure they are!!
Expect poor food
I would recommend that you get a dining room set reservation, rather than dine on your own time. The experience you will have with a food steward that knows you is such a great experience.
This is a peaceful ship. Not a party croud. If you are looking to get away from seniors, this is not the ship.