Delight snatched from disaster
Statendam Cruise Review to Alaska - Gulf of Alaska
Sail Date: July 19, 2009
Cabin Type: Oceanview
Traveled As: Singles/Friends
Reviewed: 8 years ago
We recently had an opportunity to sail on Holland America's Statendam while doing the northbound run from Vancouver B.C. to Anchorage, Alaska.
The trip was almost ruined before it began when it took two Northwest Airlines gate agents 45 minutes to check in about 20 travelers and who then told us we were too late to make our first flight, even though we still had 25 minutes in a relatively small airport. Unfortunately, we only had one shot at getting to Vancouver in time to make the cruise, however a call to Holland America's Urgent Travel department produced results which still amaze me today. A very professional agent named Linnea listened to our plight, then put us on hold for about 5 minutes and came back on the phone with totally new travel arrangements including hotels for the first two nights. While we did miss the first sea day and two nights of the cruise, the arrangements made in their place were equivalent (if not better) as we got to spend a full day in the first port city (Ketchikan) before the ship arrived. A local Holland America rep met us at the Ketchikan airport and took us to our hotel and then again met us the next morning and took us to the ship. From the pier, a Statendam rep took us aboard and checked us in as if we were VIPs - still in time for our morning shore excursion! Holland America picked up all expenses for our re-routing and the service was fantastic!
From check-in to disembarkation, the service on-board was nothing less than excellent. The smaller ship made cruising the glaciers in Glaciers National Park really breathtaking, while still providing the stability for a smooth ride. All of our shore excursions were facilitated by knowledgeable guides and were very interesting and comfortable. Our outside cabin was relatively large with an nicely sized bathroom, and our "obstructed view" window was anything but - the main obstruction was that it overlooked the walking track on the Promenade deck. Our last minute booking required us to dine in the open seating area of the Rotterdam restaurant however we were immediately seated each night regardless of our arrival time. The food was on par with any mass produced cruise line fare and was served promptly by friendly and attentive waitstaff.
Holland America has definitely won my next-cruise business with their immediate and courteous service and continued attention to detail.
Food and Dining
Service and Staff
Cabin / Stateroom
Ports of Call
Pros: Holland America's constant attention to customer satisfaction.
Cons: The typically Alaskan weather