Oosterdam Cruise Review to Alaska - Inside Passage

Contributor Level: Purser

Experience
7+ cruises

Review
1

Helpful Vote
1

3 out of 5

OK but far from wonderful

Sail Date: September 01, 2012

Reviewed: 4 years ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Balcony

If someone asked me about cruising on the Oosterdam I would probably recommend it with reservations as long as they understood what they were getting. It is an older, smaller ship and it is a Holland America cruise. If that is what they are looking for and understand what that means they should be ok.
Getting on and off the ship even though there are less than 2000 passengers is slow and difficult so plan ahead if you have an excursion.
However I would recommend any Celebrity and most RCC and Princess ahead of this line.

Pros: Nothing stands out except maybe the beds they were the best on any cruise so far

Cons: So many areas that need work

Recommends Oosterdam? Yes!

Ship Quality
A smaller\, older ship that needs lots of attention and updating. Some of the things that stand out in my mind are; the overall cleanliness and upkeep\, the lack of a comfortable chair anywhere on board\, the outdated decor\, the weak daily activities and the cabin layout.
Food and Dining
This is a mixed review because the food in the Vista and Pinnacle restaurants was very good\, presented nicely and served well. However the food in the Lido was not very good at all and the selection and hours of operation left much to be desired. The Pinnacle is well worth the extra charge for lunch or dinner and we enjoyed it completely. My one complaint about the Vista was the night they sat us all the way to the back of the ship\, it is so noisy back there that you have to shout to your dining companions to be heard and the vibrations are strong enough to shake your whole table. After that we asked to be seated in the middle of the ship which they did and it was much more enjoyable.
The Lido is a whole different story\, the food is not that good\, not always hot enough\, sometimes it has obviously sat too long. They don't get the tables cleared very fast and 4 out of the 7 days I noticed food on the floor that was not picked up. Only pizza between 8pm and 10:30
Cabin / Stateroom
The steward did a great job\, was very friendly\, helpful and professional. The room seems very small even though it is listed at nearly 200 sf. I think it is just a bad layout. Almost no drawer space and the desk is of no value plus the small couch is very uncomfortable to sit in and hard to get out of. The tub and shower were nice but the tub was cracked\, didn't drain well and the tiles were chipped. Nice storage in the bathroom and a great shower head. Everything worked just old. The door to the veranda did not shut tight so we had a constant whistle due to the wind. They worked on it but didn't solve the problem. There was a light above our veranda which had obviously had a fire at one time but they had not repainted the area so it looked really tacky.
Service and Staff
For the most part the service staff was quite good but I must admit that this is my first cruise where I encountered some obviously sullen and unhappy crew members and the only time I have said hello to a crew member and been given dirty looks. That happened more than once on this ship and one of them was an officer. The captain on the other hand was one of the best as far as communication and friendliness. He even taught a class on cooking pancakes.
Entertainment
The singers and dancer were quite good and did 3.5 nice shows\, none of them standouts but all of them entertaining. I didn't like either of the comics very much but based on the laughter around me most of the rest of audience disagrees with me so maybe they just weren't my type. The talent in the lounges was pretty weak\, I love live acts but there was none on this ship that I went looking for. Just about average. The daily activities were boring and repetitive but they do have a nice small movie theater. Good library and internet area but lousy chairs so not much fun to spend time there.


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