I would absolutely recommend a trip to Hawaii just NOT on NCL! Everything was great until they took my money. After that I was ignored. No return phone calls or emails from my Senior Cruise Specialist! The ship itself is older, it had ... Read More
I would absolutely recommend a trip to Hawaii just NOT on NCL! Everything was great until they took my money. After that I was ignored. No return phone calls or emails from my Senior Cruise Specialist! The ship itself is older, it had a library, a room for table games and a room for funerals, but no clubs for dancing (only one that played older music). The shows were laughable. The staff was unimpressive. They did not seem to care about making guests happy at all. Dinner in the main dining room took 3 hours one of the nights and at least 2 each other night.. They were incredibly slow and the food was not that great. Te coffee was served cold. The shore excursions were expensive, we rented cars instead and did our own thing. They had a party on one of the nights called the famous White Hot Party. The staff dressed in white and wore wings. They had it decorated like a dance club with neon lights and then they played 80's music. It was practically empty. So boring. I have been on many cruises and have never been so disappointed in a cruise. Hawaii is wonderful and I would recommend it on another cruise line. Read Less
Leaving from San Pedro was great----no flying so easy in and out. Embarkation was a breeze. Staff friendly enough. Cruise director did her very best. Food in dining room and in the buffet not so good. the Emerald really needs a new ... Read More
Leaving from San Pedro was great----no flying so easy in and out. Embarkation was a breeze. Staff friendly enough. Cruise director did her very best. Food in dining room and in the buffet not so good. the Emerald really needs a new Chef! Food was blah! Dining room staff---especially the head waiter Edgar Vega was excellent and made up for it. He is a rock star! Entertainment was just OK they could step it up more......especially on this cruise to Mexico. It was good----but not over the top like other cruises. The production shows really need to some into the new century! Very dated. Overall rating....I give it a 7 out of 10. This is a good family cruise with many pools and activities for all to enjoy outside. Outside dining is good with pizza and hamburgers for the kids to enjoy so there are some pluses and of course movies under the stars which is a nice touch. Don't forget, if you are looking for more of a dining experience, the ship does have three specialty restaurants. High end and only $29.00 per person. well worth the experience. Bon Voyage Read Less
This was my 7th cruise, first with Norwegian. Food was just average, paid extra for Brazilian Steak House evening and waited forever for my drink and it took 15 mins to get a plate so I could be served. As we left the restaurant, ... Read More
This was my 7th cruise, first with Norwegian. Food was just average, paid extra for Brazilian Steak House evening and waited forever for my drink and it took 15 mins to get a plate so I could be served. As we left the restaurant, realized they had not even received all the meat options. Service was S L O W! Meat had little taste and wasnot worth the extra cost. Pool and deck service was zero, no one came around the entire cruise to take drink orders by the pool. Seemed like a lot of the crew was new, like it was their first cruise. The cruise line charges you a flat fee for the tips. I felt the crew was just doing a job, unlike other cruises where crew bend over backwards for you and are super friendly. This may have something to do with the all American crew of this crew. Unlike other cruises, foreign crew members are making money to send home to families, so going the extra mile to get a good tip is a great incentive. Entertainment was average at best. China, the Hawaiian Ambassador, on the ship was great. Her Leui making and hula classes were fun.
I picked up my alcohol bought during a port at the end of the cruise and they gave it to me in a used McDonalds bag. Uncool. Some of the entertainment crew clothes didn’t fit and looked like they were squeezed into their outfits, unprofessional looking.
The ports were beautiful and fun, but Norwegian can take no credit for that. Wouldn't take another cruise with Norwegian. Read Less
This was a great way to see all the Hawaiian Islands. Time on the ship was pretty much limited to evenings (if you want to get the most out of the Hawaii experience). There were shows and activities available on board , however, during ... Read More
This was a great way to see all the Hawaiian Islands. Time on the ship was pretty much limited to evenings (if you want to get the most out of the Hawaii experience). There were shows and activities available on board , however, during the day we were off ship and not interested in daytime activities. We did attend a couple of evening shows which were great.
The ship sailed mainly in the evening which was good because when the ship was sailing it was ROCKING - up and down, side to side. The water was extremely choppy and I didn't want to be moving away from my stateroom too much because it was hard to walk. The motion did not make me sick, just very hard to maintain an appearance of not being drunk while walking.
The crew for the most part were very polite and friendly. Cabin Stewards were AWESOME! always cheerful.
The bed in our cabin was very comfortable. The size of our stateroom was adequate. Would have like to have a few more TV/movie options that what was provided--and that was only because of the rocking motion of the boat (as stated above) and I personally not wanting to leave the stateroom while sailing.
Restaurant selection could have been better. We were not told there would be a dress code for some of the "complimentary" restaurants; so we did not have appropriate attire with us and that was disappointing. This cruise is to cater to those who want to explore Hawaii for a once in a lifetime experience. I would save the "dress up" restaurant experiences for other leisure cruises. Read Less
Overall we had a good cruise, but we don’t recommend stateroom 4518. When docked and water supply hoses were connected to the port side of the ship, annoying sounds could be heard in our cabin. The sound would change, but sometimes it ... Read More
Overall we had a good cruise, but we don’t recommend stateroom 4518. When docked and water supply hoses were connected to the port side of the ship, annoying sounds could be heard in our cabin. The sound would change, but sometimes it sounded like a washing machine and other times like a steam engine. This has got to be a known problem.
Guest Services assisted the best they could, but they didn’t have a better cabin to move us to, but they did move us to an interior room to sleep the night we were docked and our cabin was noisy.
Service was very good and so was the entertainment. The food was fair in the formal dining room.
This was our first NCL cruise and it was pricey for an ocean view room. This ship seemed a little old. Other passengers told us that they like NCL and not to base our opinion of NCL on this cruise experience. They told us that other NCL ships are nicer. Read Less
We chose this cruise as the best way to see a variety of the Hawaiian Islands.
SHIP - old, but recently renovated.
CABIN - very small for a balcony room, clean
DINING - food was good and what I would expect, not anything over ... Read More
We chose this cruise as the best way to see a variety of the Hawaiian Islands.
SHIP - old, but recently renovated.
CABIN - very small for a balcony room, clean
DINING - food was good and what I would expect, not anything over the top, other than specialty restaurant - Cagneys, which was fantastic.
ENTERTAINMENT - great comedian and magician, DJ was really good as was the entertainment in the Pink Champayne Lounge
ACTIVITES - not much going on, we missed the music on deck all the time and the deck parties we have experienced on other cruise lines.
SERVICE - it was seriously horrible. We have cruised 10 previous times (none with Norwegian) and have never had to search out someone to bring poolside drinks or assist us in a diningroom, or answer questions. This ship is completely different. The people working on this ship acted like it was a complete imposition for them to assist you. Even when tipped, no appreciation, nothing. In the Liberty Dining Room, we had to go find someone to fill our water, we filled our own wine from a bottle we purchased for dinner and the waiter actually slammed the coffee carafe in from of one of the ladies dining at our table as she had requested that he return with coffee. One night we were asked if we were ready for dessert and had not been served our entree yet. Many people were talking about how horrible the service was. I heard a lady ask a member of the crew - what is wrong with the morale on this ship? Several previous Norwegian cruisers on the ship told us not to judge Norwegian by this ship as they have had wonderful experiences on other Norwegian cruises, pretty sure we will not try again.
PORTS AND SHORE EXCURSIONS - ports are beautiful and we booked our excursions with outside vendors, they were also beautiful. Read Less
We chose the POA because it was our 25th anniversary and we wanted to visit Hawaii and it was a great way to see multiple islands. After reading some of the reviews we were a little confused by some things so I thought I'd clarify a ... Read More
We chose the POA because it was our 25th anniversary and we wanted to visit Hawaii and it was a great way to see multiple islands. After reading some of the reviews we were a little confused by some things so I thought I'd clarify a few since I couldn't find straight answers.
1 - The food in Cagney's is great for breakfast and lunch as a Suite guest. Martha (restaurant manager) has turned things around. The service and the food quality was great.
2 - Each suite is stocked daily with up to 2 (1 liter each) bottles of still or sparkling water.
3 - You pick three bottles of wine at check in that are delivered to your suite the night of departure. These bottles can be consumed in your cabin or at a restaurant or bar.
4 - A bottle of champaign is waiting in your suite at embarkation.
5 - You can pick soda to be replenished daily in your suite, up to 6 cans. This is something to consider in lieu of a soda card, however it doesn't cover any soda consumed in any of the restaurants or bars. We did the math and since most of our sodas were consumed in our Suite we didn't get the soda card.
6 - NCL has started offering a Hawaiian Unlimited beverage option, but it is $100 per person per day. Unless you're planning on consuming about 8 alcohol drinks per day it isn't necessarily worth it.
I've also uploaded a walk through video of the suite since there weren't any recent videos. It can be viewed by searching youtube for "Pride of America suite 8500"
Gulsen our Butler, Gene our Steward and Thomas the Concierge were absolutely amazing. Kaj the Hotel director actually performed our vow renewal and with Zoe's help from the group events group it was fantastic.
Overall we had a fantastic trip. The ship is in good shape and although we didn't eat at the buffet we had good food at every restaurant we went to.
The ship is smaller than many of the Caribbean ships that you may be familiar with both on NCL and other cruiselines. However, that makes it seem "less crowded". In addition, because of the size some of the amenities you would expect aren't at the same scale. For example the pool is not as large as you might expect. The entertainment isn't as "top rate" either and there aren't as many other amenities as you'd find on some of the other ships, like water slides, rollercoasters, ice skating, etc. However, because of the nature of this itinerary, ie you're at a different port every day, much of your time is spent off the ship, and very little on it.
As far as dining, as I mentioned previously we didn't do the buffet, but the selection of food choices, both specialty and otherwise mean that you won't go hungry no matter how picky you are. There's a coffee bar, gelato bar, sushi bar, bakery. Granted all a la cart. There's also the cadillac diner (which is 24x7 and included), which has great milk shakes and simple "diner" fare. East Meets West and the Tepanyaki restaurants have "good" quality asian bistro food as well as a hibachi experience. The Moderno Churascarea is a great experience for those that like the brazilian steakhouse style. The Tuscan Bistro is excellent italian food. We did not eat at the french restaurant but heard positive reviews. All of the restaurants have no dress code except Liberty and the French Bistro which require close toed shoes for men and no shorts for women.
Our experience with service was great from all of the crew. We never had anything less than excellent in terms of how people acted or reacted to requests.
In fact, our experience was so positive we have already booked another trip, with our three college age children for spring break. We've also been advising people who are "new" to cruising that its a good intro, since you don't typically have any sea days, and it could very easily make you want to do more. In speaking with other guests who have had problems with motion sickness in the past they commented that they didn't experience it this time since we are predominantly sailing at night when its either dark outside or they're sleeping. Read Less
34 of us set sail on 2/23 to explore the marine world around the western side of four islands. The Explorer was filled with an engaging and inclusive group of passengers, who were just the nicest group of people imaginable.(you can ask ... Read More
34 of us set sail on 2/23 to explore the marine world around the western side of four islands. The Explorer was filled with an engaging and inclusive group of passengers, who were just the nicest group of people imaginable.(you can ask the crew). Highlights include the night snorkel with manta rays. There were more opportunities to snorkel in Kealakekua Bay. I really enjoyed swimming off the back of the boat. Some passengers went paddle boarding and kayaking. One of the other highlights was the dinner served at the museum on Molokai. It was very genuine and very lovely.
Whales were abundant. We saw great numbers of spouts, breeches, and flukes. There were moms and babies. There were gentlemen suitors following some of the females. We saw 3 types of dolphins, and of course, sea turtles.
This ship had the best food of any boat I have sailed. Every meal was freshly and individually prepared. The deserts and pastries were heavenly.
One of the most important aspects of this cruise was the crew. Each and every one of them worked incredibly hard to make sure passengers were happy and well cared for. Every crew member knew, and used, each passenger's name.
Our cabin was clean and comfortable. It was refreshed twice daily.
UnCruise is not for everyone. There's not a lot of glitz, no games, and no big productions. Entertainment might be a presentation on sea turtles or fish. Because we were close to shore most of the time there was cell service but no ship wifi. You can wear very casual clothing all week and there is no need to get dressed up and nobody really wanted to. Read Less
The Holland America Eurodam is as old-fashioned a cruise ship as they come--with 3 "gala" nights with quite a few tuxedos in evidence on a 17-night cruise, with the towel animals and the chocolate buffet if you want them, and ... Read More
The Holland America Eurodam is as old-fashioned a cruise ship as they come--with 3 "gala" nights with quite a few tuxedos in evidence on a 17-night cruise, with the towel animals and the chocolate buffet if you want them, and with mostly senior cruisers at this time of year and on a cruise this length. But for those with a love of old-style cruising, the itineraries and the value really can't be beat. The Eurodam loses points for an interminably long line for check-in in San Diego (disembarkation was much more efficient) and for virtually no welcoming ritual (no champagne) but after that initial disappointment, what's not to like? Excellent food in the dining room and, for an extra price, at Tamarind, the Asian-fusion specialty restaurant--and good food, too, and lots of choices in the Lido buffet (once you figure out the times to come so you don't have to search relentlessly for an empty table). The staff is mostly Filipino and Indonesian and always smiling and eager to please; what pleased us most is that they truly seemed to be enjoying themselves and each other and took much pride in whatever task they took on. The public areas have recently been renovated are are quite glamorous--and we appreciated the vintage cruise ship photographs on the walls, the tasteful art (especially the stunning Bas Sebus print in our verandah cabin), and the many musical choices for listening. This wasn't a cruise of fervent dancers, but we could have danced every night ("Mustang Sally" to "Uptown Funk") at the fabulous BB King Blues Club. Our favorite things about this cruise were the two astonishing dance and light show performances by One Step Dance Company, truly, the most spectacular productions we've seen in more than 15 cruises and the superb culinary talks/demonstrations by the American Test Kitchen host Annette.
No alcohol, or even bottled water, is included so bar tabs can quickly mount, but if you only want a glass or two of wine at dinner, drinks by the glass are probably the way to go.
We signed up for free-style dining and, once we learned the right time to come, never had to wait for a table for two.
This was a truly enjoyable, relaxing--and delicious--time. And we loved all those sea days! Read Less
We are a married couple in our 60's. This was our 17th cruise overall, but our first on Holland America. We were cruising with our regular cruise companions, another couple in their 60's. We have cruised on Celebrity, ... Read More
We are a married couple in our 60's. This was our 17th cruise overall, but our first on Holland America. We were cruising with our regular cruise companions, another couple in their 60's. We have cruised on Celebrity, Princess, Royal Caribbean and Carnival in the past. We normally take cruises of 10-14 days so this 17 day cruise was our longest yet. Rating this cruise itself is difficult as it was a bust in that we only saw two of the five scheduled stops in Hawaii. This was mostly because of bad weather. So rather than focusing on the cruise we will provide our observations of Holland America in general.
The Eurodam is a beautiful ship and the perfect size. The service was outstanding. The food was great. The entertainment was enjoyable. Embarkation and Debarkation were as easy as any ship on which we have traveled. Why then only three stars?
Using a baseball analogy, it is widely accepted that many of the cruisers on Holland America recognize that they (we) are in at least the bottom half of the seventh inning in life. What we want to do with the last two innings is based on our individual prospective. The great majority of HA travelers are like travelers on the other lines we have been on only with a few more of life's scars. They want to have a good time, enjoy the scenery, the food, the drinks and everything else that can be found on a cruise ship. Life has been tougher on some than to others and HA seems to have experience dealing with those issues.
This was scheduled to be a seventeen day round trip cruise from San Diego to the Hawaiian Islands with stops in Kona, Honolulu, Kauai, Maui and Hilo on the Big Island. Because of predicted bad weather the captain decided to by-pass Kona and head straight to Honolulu. When we arrived in Honolulu the wind was strong and all of the afternoon tours, including the luau's were cancelled. We were then told that because of bad weather predicted for Kauai (they suffered a severe storm) we would not go there. When the weather forecast did not improve we were told we would be staying in Honolulu an extra day and then return to Kona the following day. This meant that Lahaina, Maui would be taken off our schedule. No excursions were available through the ship for the second day in Honolulu so everyone was on their own.
The following day we arrived in Kona, a port where the ship's tenders are needed to go ashore. We did not drop anchor. Even though the seas looked calm to most with no white-caps to be seen anywhere, the captain decided the harbor was too dangerous to transport people on the tenders. As fairly seasoned cruisers we realized that we had been in tenders in much worse than we were witnessing in Kona and that got us thinking as to why that decision was made. Our reasoning is that because we were traveling with so many people with considerable life issues it would be impractical, if not impossible, to transport all those people safely with the crew that was available to assist them.
Therefore, we lost our third port and we headed back out for another sea day. We have been on cruises where ports were missed and we understand that is always a possibility. What made this tough for us this time was that in lieu of going to Kona or Maui as scheduled the cruise director suggested people could gather for a game of CHECKERS in one of the lounges!
When we arrived in Hilo for a last possible Hawaiian stop the gangway was not put into position at the designated time. The captain advised us that because of rough water the gangway was not holding steady and a safe walk off the ship may not be possible. He was assessing the situation. I think he may have heard the mumblings of the several hundred of us who had gathered in the atrium and the gangway was opened shortly thereafter. We had a great day in Hilo doing a private tour with a company known as Big Island Aina Tours that we HIGHLY RECOMMEND. We spent the next six days sailing back to Ensenada, Mexico and then on to San Diego for debarkation.
While the cruise was not what we had planned or hoped for, we still had a great time. (If you can't enjoy yourself on a cruise ship chances are pretty good that you can't enjoy yourself).
Getting back to that baseball analogy: If you are a person who enjoys some of the finer things in life and just wants to live with grace and dignity during the last few innings you can have a really nice time on Holland America. You can't beat the service or the food. But, if you have the problem we have in that you still live with the allusion that there may be at least one more headfirst slide into home left in you (albeit in slow motion), HA may not be the place for you. Read Less