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Holland America Line: Zuiderdam

  • Holland America Line

Zuiderdam Review

Launched in 2002 with a named inspired by the Southern compass point, Zuiderdam was the first ship in Holland America Line’s Vista-class. Suspended in her three-story atrium, a Waterford-crystal seahorse is the first of her exquisite art pieces that passengers see.

Other notable art throughout the ship includes a painting of Queen Beatrix by pop culture artist Andy Warhol and medallions by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Ships for the 21st century, Vista-class vessels integrate new, youthful, and family-friendly elements into Holland America Line's classic fleet. Exquisite Waterford-crystal sculptures adorn triple-deck atriums and reflect vivid, almost daring color schemes throughout. Although all the public rooms carry the traditional Holland America names (Ocean Bar, Explorer's Lounge, Crow's Nest) and aren't much different in atmosphere, their louder decor (toned down a bit since the introduction of the Zuiderdam) may make them unfamiliar to returning passengers.

Veterans of cruises on older Holland America ships will find the layout of public spaces somewhat different; still, everyone's favorite Crow's Nest lounges continue to offer those commanding views.

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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What You Should Know


  • Next to the Crow's Nest, an outdoor seating area is a quiet hideaway
  • Exterior panoramic elevators offer an elevated view of the seascape
  • You can borrow iPod shipboard art tours


  • Vista-class ships do not have self-service laundry rooms
  • Murals in Pinnacle Grill restaurants look out of place alongside priceless art found throughout the rest of the ships
  • Some chairs in Pinnacle Grill are so heavy that they barely budge without effort
Ship Stats
  • Entered Service 2002
  • Passenger Capacity 1,916
  • Crew Members 817
  • Number of Cabins 958
  • Gross Tons 82,305
  • Length 936 feet
  • Width 106 feet

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