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Old January 28th, 2010, 09:18 PM
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Default Zuiderdam

I've been getting a lot of negative feedback re the Zuiderdam .Has anyone been on this ship recently and if so did you experience any problems ?
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Old January 29th, 2010, 02:35 PM
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I can't say have been on it recently. Curious what you may have heard?

It is one of the newer ships so it has plenty of verandah cabins and the Explorations cafe. I think it is one of the better HAL ships in terms of design.
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Old January 30th, 2010, 09:12 PM
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People are saying the the ship is greatly in need of repair .
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Old February 2nd, 2010, 10:42 AM
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I was on her last month. She does have some wear and tear, but she is almost 8 years old. I thought she compared favorably to the Westerdam, that I was on 2 years ago and, the Westerdam was about 4 years newer at the time. I wonder if people are unfavorably comparing her to the Eurodam or other much newer ships. A ship will show it's age.

My only gripe was the percentage of smokers seemed much higher. I have read former Celebrity smoking cruisers have defected to HAL. If you are senisitve to smoke, you may prefer another line, but otherwise, I had no problem with this ship.
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Old February 2nd, 2010, 02:50 PM
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Default Smokers

I dread the thought of being around smokers but am I correct that its only permissable in public lounges ?
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Old February 2nd, 2010, 03:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry43 View Post
I dread the thought of being around smokers but am I correct that its only permissable in public lounges ?
This is from Holland America's FAQ:


For the comfort of all of our guests, all indoor areas are designated non-smoking with the exception of:
  • Casino
  • Northern Lights Disco (ms Eurodam, ms Oosterdam, ms Nieuw Amsterdam, ms Westerdam & ms Zuiderdam only)
  • Outside Decks
  • Seaview Bar (except ms Maasdam, ms Ryndam, ms Statendam & ms Veendam)
  • Sports Bar
  • Crow's Nest (except ms Eurodam, ms Oosterdam, ms Nieuw Amsterdam, ms Westerdam & ms Zuiderdam)



Our ships do not have "nonsmoking" staterooms; however, all rooms are thoroughly cleaned after each cruise to assure the comfort of our guests. All showrooms are nonsmoking during performances.
Cigar and pipesmoking is permitted on the outside decks only.
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Old February 2nd, 2010, 07:35 PM
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Thanks for the research ,I appreciate it
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Old February 3rd, 2010, 09:18 AM
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Henry, that is the policy, but with more hard core smokers leaving other lines whose policies are more anti smoking, we found that smoke was more of a problem than past HAL cruises. We found we had to avoid walking through the the casino. We ate dinner on deck 2 and would have simply crossed through the casino to go to the show, but it was much more smoky than usual. We would go up to deck 3 and then sit in the balcony for the show to avoid the casino. We also could not enjoy the piano bar, as it was designated smoking and did no have a nonsmoking area, and was always extremely saturated with smoke.

We also had a neighbor who was a chain smoker. In the past, we have never had a problem with using our blacony, if we had a smoking neighbor. We would step back in our room for 10 minutes or so to give our neighbor time to smoke their cigarette, and then go back out. This time, that did not work, as our neighbor was constantly out smoking. I began to wonder if he ever left his balcony. I am guessing his wife would not let him smoke in the room.
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Old February 3rd, 2010, 10:26 AM
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Just for that alone I'm happy we decided against a balcony .I would think,however ,that people over 60 as the majority of cruisers seem to be would realize how harmful smoking is
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Old February 11th, 2010, 01:30 PM
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I'm a little late with my response but nevertheless - we found nothing to complain about on the Zuiderdam. (Jan. 12-22) My expectations can be rather high and I couldn't find anything wrong with this ship at all.

The only place we really had smoke problems was when we walked through the casino and we only did that once because of it.

The food was fantastic and the service the best we've had it years.

I don't see anything that would cause me to even frown.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 03:29 PM
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That sounds great .I have to tell my friends cruising with us because they heard negativity
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Old February 12th, 2010, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by felix_the_cat View Post
I'm a little late with my response but nevertheless - we found nothing to complain about on the Zuiderdam. (Jan. 12-22) My expectations can be rather high and I couldn't find anything wrong with this ship at all.

The only place we really had smoke problems was when we walked through the casino and we only did that once because of it.

The food was fantastic and the service the best we've had it years.

I don't see anything that would cause me to even frown.
You're right , Felix. HAL has the best food of all the mainstream lines I have cruised. I have also cruised once on Disney, and the food on HAL is also better than Disney.

I found the food very good in the main dining room. There is really no need to eat at the specialty, except for the ambiance of the Pinnacle, we also like to to have the fillet mignon, but even that was served one of the formal nights, not as large a portion, but it was there. As I always choose the smaller cut of fillet mignon anyway, the dinning room fillet mignon was enough for me.
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Old February 12th, 2010, 03:53 PM
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I am getting to the point of wanting to cruise as often as possible
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Old February 12th, 2010, 05:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry43 View Post
I am getting to the point of wanting to cruise as often as possible
Us too. Now that I've set my retirement date (Mary 28th) from my day job hopefully we will do more.
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Azamara
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Princess
NCL
HAL
Cunard
Celebrity
and some unknown tub

Yes, I'm a Royal Chump and proud of it.
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Old February 12th, 2010, 09:13 PM
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just got off the Zuiderdam yesterday on a Panama cruise, no problems at all. The food was great as was the staff. There were only a few smokers in the casino , they even had a smoke free night. Personally I wouldn't have given up the pleasure of sitting on my veranda every morning and night on the off chance I might be next to a smoker but that's me. Would definately recommend this ship to anyone.
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Old February 13th, 2010, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lkcoss View Post
just got off the Zuiderdam yesterday on a Panama cruise, no problems at all. The food was great as was the staff. There were only a few smokers in the casino , they even had a smoke free night. Personally I wouldn't have given up the pleasure of sitting on my veranda every morning and night on the off chance I might be next to a smoker but that's me. Would definitely recommend this ship to anyone.
Believe me-if you had a chain smoker next to you-you would KNOW. As I said, before this last crusie, I thought that many non smokers were nit picking, as on previous cruises my smoking neighbors were not a problem. Since they did not stay on their balcony all the time smoking, I would step back inside for a few minutes and allow them their smoke. This time that did not work. As I said, I began to think that man must never leave the balcony, and I suspect his wife would not allow him to smoke in the room.
Until you have experienced such a neighbor, you will not understand.

My fear is, with Celebrity's more strict non smoking policy, that "hard core" smokers are now cruising HAL,(I don't see most smokers changing, only those severely addicted would change I would think) and so the percentage of smokers are higher than it used to be.
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Old February 16th, 2010, 09:44 AM
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I'm retired 11 years but Mrs.Henry43 only 2 .
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Old April 23rd, 2010, 07:22 PM
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My wife and I sailed the Zuiderdam in Jan 2008 just before a drydock refit. Many said it was well worn. We noticed some wear and tear and a a general need for some work, but it did not distract from our awesome time. The smoke in the casino was bad. Fortunately, my wife and I have no desire to be in a casino. We are both very active and didn't mind using the stairs to avoid the casino. The ship does have a poor design routing you through the casino. Occasionally we noticed the smell of smoke on our balcony, but as someone stated it did not persist as the smoker did not persist. There were a few issues. The Lido buffet got crowded at meal times and a BBQ dinner party on the pool deck was extremely crowded. I had to really hunt for some chairs for my wife and me which I promptly gave to an older couple. I think HAL's food, while good was not per their reputation.

The service and entertainment ranged. We had an Elton John impersonator that was top flight entertainment. Our room steward was exceptional. Our dinng room staff was good, but only that. The crew organinzing tendering was dismal.

High Tea was a lot of fun. High Tea provided us with an abundance of entertainment. If you want to meet some very colorful people, go to High Tea.

My wife and I were very happy with our vacation onboard the Zuiderdam. We felt it was a good value. We would do it again and confidently recommend it.
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Old April 24th, 2010, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven View Post
My wife and I sailed the Zuiderdam in Jan 2008 just before a drydock refit. Many said it was well worn. We noticed some wear and tear and a a general need for some work, but it did not distract from our awesome time. The smoke in the casino was bad. Fortunately, my wife and I have no desire to be in a casino. We are both very active and didn't mind using the stairs to avoid the casino. The ship does have a poor design routing you through the casino. Occasionally we noticed the smell of smoke on our balcony, but as someone stated it did not persist as the smoker did not persist. There were a few issues. The Lido buffet got crowded at meal times and a BBQ dinner party on the pool deck was extremely crowded. I had to really hunt for some chairs for my wife and me which I promptly gave to an older couple. I think HAL's food, while good was not per their reputation.

The service and entertainment ranged. We had an Elton John impersonator that was top flight entertainment. Our room steward was exceptional. Our dinng room staff was good, but only that. The crew organinzing tendering was dismal.

High Tea was a lot of fun. High Tea provided us with an abundance of entertainment. If you want to meet some very colorful people, go to High Tea.

My wife and I were very happy with our vacation onboard the Zuiderdam. We felt it was a good value. We would do it again and confidently recommend it.
The Elton John impersonator was good. We saw him on the Westerdam in April 2008. He was not on the Zuiderdam in January 2010.

BTW, the Celebrity stricter smoking policy took effect in January 2009, and so I don't think you would have noticed more smokers in January 2008 from defecting Celebrity cruisers now cruising HAL. I had no problem either with my April 2008 cruise on the Westerdam.
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I have now achieved-
ONE HUNDRED DAYS ON A CRUISE SHIP!!!!!!!!!!
139 days total

Booked: Celebrity Silhouette November 23, 2014
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