Excellent new HAL ship

Nieuw Statendam Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 27

Overall rating:

4.7 out of 5
Nieuw Statendam

13 Night Southern Caribbean Seafarer & Bahamas (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip)

Sail date: January 20, 2019

Ship: Nieuw Statendam

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 7066

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Review summary

We loved the ship and the services. We would not hesitate to take this ship again, and might even see where it is going and prefer it over others.


5 out of 5
Four Star status got us welcomed aboard early. Very friendly experience.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
Main Dining aroom food was wonderful, as we have come to expect from HAL, but the specialty restaurants were SUPERB! Especially enjoyed Rudi’s and the Tamarind.

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5
Pool was nice, multiple hot tubs even better! Blend (wine tasting and then blend your own bottle) was fun and tasty.


5 out of 5
This new, larger than other dam ships (with the exception of Koningsdam), provides a multitude of music venues. BB King’s Blues Club, Rolling Stone Rock Room, Lincoln Center Stage, Billboard On Board - many evenings worth of entertainment. The 270’ screen in the Main Stage was perfect for BBC’s Planet Earth 2 presentation and also for the 2 dance shows, which were fantastic. Thoroughly enjoyed the entertainment, which on other dam ships has been less memory. Cruise Director was personable and entertaining.

Children's Programs

Did not bring children.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Impeccable. Our wine steward and waiter were attentive and quickly new our tastes, made excellent recommendations. Neptune Lounge concierges we’re friendly and determined to find a solution (and did) to a problem we had. Our room attendants kept our room spotless and well attended, always friendly and congenial when we saw them in the hall.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
Beautiful design - I loved the music theme throughout the ship. We had been a bit apprehensive about cruising on a larger ship (2600 passengers), but the layout accommodates everyone well. We did not wait in long lines and never felt crowded.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Very spacious suite, large bathroom with oversized whirlpool tub and separate large shower and double sinks, over 500 square feet including verandah, very comfortable King bed, spotless.

Ship tip

Enjoy the many music and dining options!

Ports of call

Ft. Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida

4 out of 5
Very busy port. We did a land and sea transfer to the airport and were greatly disappointed. Sat on the bus for 1.5 hours while they solved a mechanical issue. We did the Everglades tour on a previous cruise. Much better.

Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (Private Island)

5 out of 5
This is one of my favorite beaches. Clean white sand, good barbecue (included). This time we rented a Cabana (book early as they sell out fast) and felt it was worth the price. Stocked with sodas and water in the fridge, appetizers and lots of fruit brought to us. Attentive staff that checked in frequently. Waiter came by for drink orders. Snorkeling apparatus and floats provided. Misting fan and shower (cold, but nice to rinse off with).

Grand Turk Island Did not visit port

Port was canceled due to high winds.

Amber Cove (Puerto Plata), Dominican Republic

5 out of 5
A very full day. We toured the city center and a lovely church. Could have skipped the gift shop. Visited a chocolate factory (good tour with a couple free samples), a cigar factory and lounge (not my thing but others liked it), a rum distillery, a plantation and botanical garden (very interesting and a good guide), and had a typical Caribbean soup for lunch (included). Was recommended by FOOD and WINE magazine. I recommend it, too.

Kralendijk, Bonaire

5 out of 5
Best excursion by far! Toured Washington Slagbaai National Park. Our guide was knowledgeable and friendly. In addition to the main visitor center we went to a Turtle Nesting beach, a blowhole, and a protected cove. The wind was fierce that day and the waves were wild everywhere. Excellent tour but be advised it is a very bumpy ride over rough rocky roads. Not for anyone with mobility issues or back problems.

Willemstad, Curacao

4 out of 5
Lovely, especially at night. We have been several times and done most of the excursions. We did not this time. Wind was heavy and the “Old Swinging Lady” halted for a while. Our ship was large enough it had to dock farther away than on previous trips.

Oranjestad, Aruba

4 out of 5
Nice beaches, lots of shopping opportunities (though I did not). We took the KOOKOO KANUKU tour, a fun bus out to the California Lighthouse, Alto Vista chapel, past expensive homes, and time on Moomba Beach. Pleasant day. The beach restaurant has tasty Calamari and very tasty “Exotic Mojitos.”


4 out of 5
We had priority disembarkation and did not wait in line (but we could see others had a long line). Porters were plentiful. Line at customs went smoothly and pleasantly.

Traveler Photos

Verandah Spacious bathroom Alto Vista Chapel Our Suite Our Suite Lower Dining Room Surf’s up! View from the Cabana Nieuw Statendam KOOKOO KANUKU bus Boka Kokolishi
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