Will be sailing Prinsendam Sept. 20, med. cruise.First time to Europe...so excited. Long time cruiser with HAL, am curious about the smaller Prinsendam, in comparision to the larger ships. Any insights would be great. Have A cabin, upper prom booked.
I sailed the Princendam last August, San Francisco to Alaska round trip and loved every minute of it. We were upgraded to an A cabin. Our first veranda ever. My travel buddy and I are seriously consider the October 16 sailing of the Princendam and we'll treat ourselves again to an A cabin.
The Princendam is a wonderful size by the end of your voyage you'll know everyone on the ship and they'll know you. It's like a small elegent town vs. the anonymity of a large flashy city. But it still has all of the activities you find on the other HAL ships. There's just fewer people doing them so they feel much more personal.
As on the other HAL ships, the Crow's Nest is my favorite place to watch the world sail by. They also serve Afternnon Tea there so you don't have to leave the view behind to go down to the Exployers Lounge, where the view is obscured by life boats.
The main dining room is all on one deck but the center of it is raised about 2 steps above the perimiter tables so if there's still day light outside you still get to see the view as well as see whats going on in the whole dining room.
The passengers also seemed to be a much more "traveled" crowd and there were a lot more English speaking Europeans than you probably find on HAL's cruises in the Caribbean, Alaska or Mexico.
I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time cruising Europe. I cruised the Baltic several years ago on the Massdam and loved every minute of it. I could have used a few more sea days but there was just so much to see.
Thank you so much for your reply, we are going with friends who have never cruised before and I wanted them to enjoy the experience that we have always had with HAL. Sounds like they will and we will enjoy the "new" ship as well.
We're sailing on Prinsendam May 17th, Med. Cruise. I can hardly wait. We can chat after our return. If you haven't already, check the following website for pictures of the Prinsendam. I found them really good.
I also sailed the Prinsendam 14 day Alaska from San Francisco (the last voyage of the season) and agree wholeheartedly. The ship is smaller and by no means flashy, but so uncrowded you feel like you have the ship to yourself. No lines, no crowds and the service was the most personalized of all the HAL ships I have sailed. The cabins are spacious, plenty of storage space and the ship fits very well into HAL scheme.
The pace onboard is relaxed, the guests were well traveled and never anxious. Being seasoned cruisers, they were less focused on activities, more on conversation, socializing and quiet travel. The service is more attentive then the larger, higher volume ships. Even the Lido was polished, glassware instead of plastic cups, more service personnel to seat you, bring coffee & drinks, always flatware on the tables rolled in clean cloth napkins and never did I have to wait for a table.
It was truely the most relaxing voyage, classic, comfortable and personalized I have had in some time. If the newest, glitziest ship is not your priority, the Prinsendam will please you.
Retired CD & ShorEx: Royal Cruise Line; Radisson Seven Seas: Celebrity; Holland America; Premier; NCL.
We are looking forward to our trip in October - Athens to Venice on the lovely Prinsendam.
We have just upgraded to an SS which will make the cruise extra special. I have only read good reports lately about this wonderful ship. Roll on October, but first in 8 days time we are off to Tahiti - "Paradise".
Until we sail on the Tahitan Princess - Tahiti to Hawaii
Until we sail on the Nautica - HongKong to Athens
My husband, Richard, and I and another couple are sailing on the May 7, 2004, transatlantic itinerary of the Prinsendam. We have booked a Cat. BC guarantee. Can hardly wait to experience this elegant ship.
We have previously sailed on the following:
SeaWind Crown, 1993
Song of America, 1994
Song of america, 1995
Best regards and happy sailing,
Carol Ann Westbrook