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Holland America Line: Volendam

Volendam Review

Launched in 1999, for Volendam draws on the Holland America Line's incredible collection of artwork to enhance the ship's public spaces. Included are pre-Columbian fetishes and sculptures and Renaissance-era fountains imported from Italy in the hallway galleries.

The three-story atrium of the ship features an elegant sculpture inspired by the myriad of moods and colors of a kaleidoscope by Luciano Vistosi.

Similar in layout to Statendam-class vessels, these slightly larger sister ships introduced playful art and interior design theme elements to Holland America Line's classic vessels. Triple-deck atriums are distinguished by a fantastic—and fiber-optic-lighted—Murano-glass sculpture on Volendam and, in an attempt to be hip, an almost scary towering pipe organ on Zaandam.

The interior decor and much of the artwork found in each vessel has a predominant theme—Volendam centers on flowers and Zaandam around music. Look for Zaandam's collection of guitars autographed by famous musicians such as the Rolling Stones and a saxophone signed by former President Bill Clinton. The extra space in these ships allows for a larger specialty restaurant and a roomier feel throughout.

Holland America Line has enjoyed a distinguished record of traditional cruises, world exploration, and transatlantic crossings since 1873—all facets of its history that are reflected in the fleet's multimillion-dollar shipboard art and antiques collections. Even the ships' names follow a pattern set long ago: all end in the suffix dam and are either derived from the names of various dams that cross Holland's rivers, important Dutch landmarks, or points of the compass. The names are even recycled when vessels are retired, and some are in their fifth and sixth generation of use.

Noted for focusing on passenger comfort, Holland America Line cruises are classic in design and style, and with an infusion of younger adults and families on board, they remain refined without being stuffy or stodgy. Following a basic design theme, returning passengers feel as at home on the newest Holland America vessels as they do on older ones.

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Ship Stats
  • Crew Members 615
  • Entered Service 1999
  • Gross Tons 61,214
  • Length 781 feet
  • Number of Cabins 716
  • Passenger Capacity 1,432
  • Width 106 feet
  • New

Mar 1, 2017

Review of Volendam

Terrie F Age: 55 Occupation:Executive Administrator Number of Cruises: 3 Cruise Line: Holland America Ship: Volendam Sailing Date: 2015-03-3 Itinerary: Asia Over all is was fine with a friendly staff. Being on deck 7 we had access to the Neptune Lounge, and John C was a great Concierge and always so friendly and helpful. Same as the Alaska cruise back in 2013. We didn't take the cruise to eat, and basically the food was good, we had open seating

so we were put on the lower lever, and the first night was a zoo, but we believe that was due to the safety training at the lifeboat stations, so everything ran behind. Like other reviewers said...anything extra be prepared to pull out that card because it will cost you...we enjoyed eating at the Italian restaurant because of the small plates offered, and we enjoyed the pinnacle grill, it would have been better had they offered different daily menus. Need updated menus al around. Oh but the bugers and nachos on the lido were great lunches. 7002, Veranda Suite - nice size plenty of room...a bit outdated but kept clean. The cooking demonstrations were nice, and my husband attended a couple of wine tastings. Love the spa days I took, but the sales pitch for the products they used I could have done without. The excursions - Halong Bay we did he deluxe where lunch was included and it was fun. The islands were beautiful, the guy friendly and attempted to tell jokes, if you go on shore be prepared for girls on motor bikes to pull over and want to sell you pearls...which we bought for the grand girls (better than a t-shirt). Just go back and forth on $. We had private drivers in the other Vietnam locations because we're not big bus people and this was a return trip for my husband so it was special. The one tour we did that wasn't from the ship was a country side and cooking class http://www.vietnamprivatetour.com great tour, and it was less than other tour cost, plus it was so much fun, Big bus tour in Cambodia, just be prepared it's a 3rd world country, there are little children smiling and saying money but they are clueless to what they are asking for. Unlike our brats that cry because they don't have, or they need...they looked fine happy and dirty because they don't know what they don't have. If you don't want to see this, then don't go...if you want to educate yourself and want to make a difference someday, then go! We did go to the pepper plantation which was interesting. also big bus to Thailand, and pretty much it was what we expected. When we disembarked in Singapore I was ready to write a really nice review, then we disembarked. Departing in Singapore, easy.....But then my nightmare. My fault I know it, but when getting ready I got distracted and then the call came for us to depart. I left my ring, necklace and bracelet on the table. As soon as I cleared customs I realized it. Ran back thru security had to have an escort back on board, in tears ran in to the suite and in less than 30 minutes time - they were gone! GONE, I was sobbing, tore the room apart went and got John, told him the 2 guys that came in the room to clean balcony as we left, about the guy that was in the room when I ran back in (he came to get breakfast tray). My 2 days in Singapore was miserable, my ring which I just got for Christmas, my priceless necklace that my deceased dad had given me back in the 70's gone. They did a 2 week investigation and were sorry to inform me it had not be found. So no matter how nice, helpful or whatever - it doesn't matter. I would have gone on another Holland vessel, but never again. Customer relations in Seattle is slow to respond and until I wrote the president I hadn't heard verbally from anyone other than email. Don't leave your things around, no matter how helpful the sfaff....they aren't all honest.

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  • New

Mar 3, 2015

Asia

Over all is was fine with a friendly staff. Being on deck 7 we had access to the Neptune Lounge, and John C was a great Concierge and always so friendly and helpful. Same as the Alaska cruise back in 2013. We didn't take the cruise to eat, and basically the food was good, we had open seating so we were put on the lower lever, and the first night was a zoo, but we believe that was due to the safety training at the lifeboat stations, so

everything ran behind. Like other reviewers said...anything extra be prepared to pull out that card because it will cost you...we enjoyed eating at the Italian restaurant because of the small plates offered, and we enjoyed the pinnacle grill, it would have been better had they offered different daily menus. Need updated menus al around. Oh but the bugers and nachos on the lido were great lunches. 7002, Veranda Suite - nice size plenty of room...a bit outdated but kept clean. The cooking demonstrations were nice, and my husband attended a couple of wine tastings. Love the spa days I took, but the sales pitch for the products they used I could have done without. The excursions - Halong Bay we did he deluxe where lunch was included and it was fun. The islands were beautiful, the guy friendly and attempted to tell jokes, if you go on shore be prepared for girls on motor bikes to pull over and want to sell you pearls...which we bought for the grand girls (better than a t-shirt). Just go back and forth on $. We had private drivers in the other Vietnam locations because we're not big bus people and this was a return trip for my husband so it was special. The one tour we did that wasn't from the ship was a country side and cooking class http://www.vietnamprivatetour.com great tour, and it was less than other tour cost, plus it was so much fun, Big bus tour in Cambodia, just be prepared it's a 3rd world country, there are little children smiling and saying money but they are clueless to what they are asking for. Unlike our brats that cry because they don't have, or they need...they looked fine happy and dirty because they don't know what they don't have. If you don't want to see this, then don't go...if you want to educate yourself and want to make a difference someday, then go! We did go to the pepper plantation which was interesting. also big bus to Thailand, and pretty much it was what we expected. When we disembarked in Singapore I was ready to write a really nice review, then we disembarked. Departing in Singapore, easy.....But then my nightmare. My fault I know it, but when getting ready I got distracted and then the call came for us to depart. I left my ring, necklace and bracelet on the table. As soon as I cleared customs I realized it. Ran back thru security had to have an escort back on board, in tears ran in to the suite and in less than 30 minutes time - they were gone! GONE, I was sobbing, tore the room apart went and got John, told him the 2 guys that came in the room to clean balcony as we left, about the guy that was in the room when I ran back in (he came to get breakfast tray). My 2 days in Singapore was miserable, my ring which I just got for Christmas, my priceless necklace that my deceased dad had given me back in the 70's gone. They did a 2 week investigation and were sorry to inform me it had not be found. So no matter how nice, helpful or whatever - it doesn't matter. I would have gone on another Holland vessel, but never again. Customer relations in Seattle is slow to respond and until I wrote the president I hadn't heard verbally from anyone other than email. Don't leave your things around, no matter how helpful the sfaff....they aren't all honest.

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  • New

May 6, 2014

singapore to singapre

The cruise commenced and ended in Singapore and was overall very enjoyable even given the illness issue. The ship itself is probably showing its age somewhat which is more apparent if you have sailed on one of their newer vessels (i.e. Oosterdam). For a first time cruiser it is good value. Personally I would opt for one of their more recent vessels. The food in the Lido Buffet was good to very good and an improvement on other HA ships we have

travelled on. The same applies to the main dining room where there was plenty of choice. We opted for fixed dining on this occasion and managed to be teamed up with a great couple from Sweden which led to some very interesting discussions over dinner. We dined at the Pinnacle Grill (their speciality restaurant) for which you pay a surcharge of around $25 per person. This is a step up from the main dining room in terms of food quality and service and is well worth the surcharge and as a change from the normal routine. The decor was not as impressive compared to the similar restaurant on the Oosterdam and is no doubt due to the age of the ship and the limited space available on Volendam. We occupied stateroom 6102 on Navigation Deck which is an outside stateroom with two large windows overlooking the front of the ship. Immediately outside is a corridor which leads on to a deck area in front of the stateroom which is a great vantage point when entering ports. It is in our view the pick of the outside staterooms if you don't want to upgrade to a balcony version. There are a number of bars/lounges spread throughout the ship in which various artists perform. The main showroom put on a number of shows and of particular note were two Scottish entertainers who performed twice during the cruise. They were definitely the highlight with the quality of the remaining acts of a lesser standard. Outside deck games are available as well and a reasonably stocked library. We tend to organise our own excursions usually at a much lesser cost than the ship's excursions and better quality. However the ship's excursions are well organised and it means that you don't have to bother yourself particularly if you are not computer savvy with organising it yourself and are prepared to pay the extra. The cruise was a good introduction for people who had not visited Asia previously although we had already been there a number of times ourselves but still found it interesting. Singapore is always fascinating with its ever changing skyline, great hotels and a myriad of restaurants lining the river. They have also developed "Gardens by the Bay" which is essentially a botanical garden with every type of plant from all different climate zones. It incorporates two huge greenhouses to maintain certain plants in a controlled atmosphere - well worth a visit. We stayed at the Grand Copthorne in a fabulous room looking down the river and couldn't their reception staff teach some other hotels about client service ! It was also possible to catch a river ferry right outside the hotel to anywhere of interest and it was very cheap. Next stop was Malacca where it is quite easy to walk from the pier to the places of interest. It has quite a few historical areas due to Portuguese, Dutch and British colonial administrations. As we had been to Penang a number of times we limited ourselves at this port to a walk around their historical buildings and downtown - always interesting. Next port was Phuket and we opted to go to Padang Beach which we had visited some 20 years prior. Whilst in those days it was a paradise it is now wall to wall shops and wall to way beach chairs - a bit of a disappointment and perhaps taking off to one of their other less crowded areas would have been a better choice. The highlight of the whole trip was an overnight stay in Burma (Myanmar). We opted to fly to Bagan (a former capital ) which is situated in a valley on the edge of the Irrawaddy river. There are some 3000 odd temples in this valley of varying sizes and designs and it well worth a visit. We flew Air KBZ, a local airline who could not be faulted with excellent inflight service. We booked our overnight stay with Oway Travel and could not recommend them more highly. They are a local company in Rangoon and organised our entire two days without a hitch. They arranged transfers from the port (some 60kms from the city) to the airport and return, two return tickets to Bagan, pick up and return transfers at Bagan to the hotel and overnight in a deluxe room at the Aureum Palace Resort Hotel - a truly incredible architectural achievement which was only matched by the gracious and courteous manner in which the staff responded. Next call was to Port Blair in the Andaman Islands which was a complete debacle from the obtaining of visas to arriving at the port itself. We were unclear from the relevant websites exactly what type of visa was needed for what was essentially a six hour visit. We emailed two different authorities (the visa issuing company and the high commission in Canberra) both of which went unanswered. Eventually we applied for a tourist visa which cost $135 EACH for a six hour stopover. That however was not the end of it - the day before reaching Port Blair we were advised that we needed to fill out further visa forms as well as provide a photocopy of our passports. Needless to say the entire ship was more than a little rattled particularly as the Front Office had to do all the photocopying !! To top it all off there was no immigration activity carried out !!! Presumably by the look in the dining room they decided that a meal was better than carrying out further immigration checks !!!!!! After all that we decided to remain on board and wonder why Holland America even entertain going there given the inconvenience to the passengers for what is essentially a six hour stopover - you don't need this short of hassle on a holiday. There are any number of more attractive options in Thailand etc., who are keen to welcome tourists. Langkawi was a refreshing change and as always is a great spot to visit with some incredible beaches. Unfortunately my travelling partner fell ill with a gastro problem which had swept the ship and which he managed to cop twice. That put somewhat of a dampener on the remainder of the trip. To the ship's credit they responded instantly by a major and ongoing disinfection of the ship and their medical team was brilliant. We managed an overnight stay in Kuala Lumpur which is about 60kms from the pier. Again an interesting city with substantial improvements since our last visit and plenty to see. The cruise terminated at Singapore. The one disappointment with this cruise was the crew who seemed to lack friendliness and courtesy which is so apparent on their other ships.

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Sep 15, 2013

Alaskan Cruise

This was our first cruise to Alaska which we boarded in Vancouver. It was awesome and fantastic. We were on the Volendam and I know that there last cruise on the Alaskan route is September 24th. Just make sure you take advantage of their shore excursions and all that the ship has to offer. I took computer classes on photo organization and editing.....it was so informative...you had to get to class early! The food was wonderful, take advantage

of the Pinnacle Grill which is a little extra but well worth every dollar! The spa was amazing...I actually got my hair cut and coming from Miami Beach...and being a fanatic about my hair...I normally wouldn't have allowed anyone to cut my hair but she was amazing...(I went ot get it blown out)...Marlene should be working in New York City or Miami Beach! She was trained in London and she was the best! The staff was wonderful and I am now recuperating from our 7 days in heaven: visiting Alaska with Holland America! Food was good and many choices for those of us that like to watch what we eat! We took advantage of the Pinnacle Grill which was a little more but a very relaxing and romantic experience for my husband and I. Staff for excellent! We upgraded to a suite and we loved it ! As this was my husbands dream trip, we afforded ourselves the luxury of a suite...and with it came free laundry and dry cleaning services and a concierge room. Less packing for me and we had personal service..everyone was very attentive! Plenty of space and a nice balcony. Extra bathroom space was the icing on the cake! So much to do...computer classes, dancing lessons, lectures, cooking demonstrations, exercise classes and lectures....wow....the classes were wonderful. We took advantage of them all and sometimes we just read in the explorers Lounge...our needs were were totally fulfilled> And the Spa..don't miss getting a massage and hair services. Marlene will surely be offered a job in a Paris or New York hair salon! Don't miss the excursions. We took the Tracey Arm Excursion as our first one and it was beautiful. My first glacier, was seen here...and then we got to see Orca Whales (otherwise known as the Killer Whales I believe).. We went Kayaking in Skagway with Packers Expedition....and I understand they also provide hiking tours...which would be great. White Pass train ride was a nice experience and then to Kayak on a glacier lake. And don't worry, they had all the clothing and although it was lightly raining, this was a fantastic adventure for us. And then do some Salmon Fishing in Ketchikan. What a great way to finish our last shore excursion! We were able to send what we caught home. I normally don't like fishing at all but this was a wonderful time! Ask for Axel for your boat captain! My husband had been talking about taking a trip to Alaska for many years. We even offered to take all our children around 5 years ago but just couldn't put it together with everyone's schedules. So we made the decision to go it alone, just the two of us. What a wonderful trip we had. We took the Volendam out of Vancouver. We arrived 2 days early and stayed at the Pan Pacific Hotel. What a gem and great location no only for getting on the cruise ship but for touring Vancouver. On sailing day you simply hit the elevator button and you are a few feet from the entrance of the entrance to embarkation of ship. Outside the door is the hop on and off buses which we found was a great way to see Vancouver! Sailing day was a breeze, they were so organized and it was a mere 10 minute procedure. We took the inland passage route and it was beautiful every minute of the day. Even when it rained....

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Aug 16, 2013

Alaska

All in all not an experience we would want to repeat. Mediocre food. Very nice cabin. Kept very clean by the young Balinese staff Did not care for the entertainment. Very expensive tours when booked through the cruise line The staff from Bali and Singapore were lovely people, but the same could not be said about the European and American staff, who were obnoxious and ignorant. The food was mediocre most of the time,

and inedible the rest of the time, although the sweets were not bad. The weather was very poor, and the whole experience was boring. They try to charge 11 dollars a day, for tips, but obviously they use it to supplement the obscenely low wages that most of the staff are paid, especially the Balinese and Singaporeans. You can tip who you want. You don't have to pay this surcharge, and all you have to do is inform the purser when you get on the ship at the start of the cruise. We found this out when we went with Royal Caribbean, which, incidentally, is 100 times better than this lot. Drinks are very expensive on board, and they ran out of the only beer that I liked, towards the end of the cruise. Not to be repeated.

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