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Stories from the Sea, Past and Present

Author: Captain Albert (page 1 of 227)

2022 May 30; ms Rotterdam (VII) named in Rotterdam.

The ms Rotterdam (VII) was named yesterday in the Netherlands. The below Press Release was issued and I added some photos taken during the event in Rotterdam.

Holland America Line’s Holds Naming Ceremony for Rotterdam with Godmother Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands

Ship christened in namesake city in a ceremony steeped with tradition

SEATTLE, May 30, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Holland America Line’s flagship Rotterdam received the royal treatment in a ceremony rich with Dutch heritage May 30, 2022, in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands served as godmother and officially named the ship in front of invited dignitaries and guests.

Rotterdam was named by Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands in Rotterdam, Monday, May 30, 2022.

   Holland America Line’s Flagship Rotterdam Named in Rotterdam, Netherlands, by Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet.

Upon arrival, Princess Margriet was welcomed at the gangway with a traditional floral bouquet presented by seven-year-old Nora van Dijk, daughter of Nathalie van Dijk, who has been with Holland America Line for 15 years, most recently as a business development representative in sales in the Rotterdam office. During the daytime naming celebration, Carnival Corporation President and CEO Arnold Donald, Holland America Group President Jan Swartz, Rotterdam Captain Werner Timmers, Lord Mayor of Rotterdam Ahmed Aboutaleb and Mariner Ambassadors David and Gisela Gere joined Princess Margriet to officially welcome Rotterdam to the fleet.

Her Royal Highness Prinses Margriet of the Netherlands receives a bouquet of flowers from Nora van Dijk.

“Our heritage is rooted here in the Netherlands, and we are deeply honored to have Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet as godmother of her fifth Holland America Line ship,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “When Rotterdam was delivered in 2021 we postponed its naming ceremony so we could hold it in Rotterdam, because there’s no better place to name a ship than in the city it was named after. After a challenging couple of years, we are excited to celebrate this memorable moment in our company’s history.”

Following the ceremony, a gala luncheon was held onboard for invited guests. The festivities continued into the evening with a gala dinner and the opportunity for guests to pour champagne over the ship’s bell. The blessing of the ship’s bell is a Holland America Line tradition when welcoming a new ship to the fleet. 

Captain Werner Timmers, Her Royal Highness Prinses Margriet of the Netherlands, Mrs. Jan Schwartz, President of the Holland America Group. (Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Lines)

Rotterdam’s naming ceremony also was attended by Stein Kruse, senior advisor to the chairman and CEO, Carnival Corporation; Keith Taylor executive vice president, fleet operations Holland America Group; Randy Weisenburger, board member, Carnival Corporation; Nico Bleichrodt, vice president, international sales, Holland America Line and Seabourn; Jaap Smit, commissioner to the King; and Boudewijn Siemons, COO, Port Of Rotterdam and Chairman of the Cruise Policy Board. Antorcha was unable to attend the ceremony.

The Geres were selected as Mariner Ambassadors for Rotterdam to honor Holland America Line’s appreciation of its loyal guests who are long-time cruisers. Since first sailing in 1988 aboard Rotterdam V, the Geres have sailed nearly 2,500 days on Holland America Line, including several cruises on Rotterdam VI.

The bottle smashing against the hull after having been remotely released from inside the Mainstage.

A History of Royal Namings 
Holland America Line’s connection to The House of Orange goes back nearly a century to Prince Hendrik launching Statendam III in 1929. Since then, members of the Dutch Royal Family have launched 11 more Holland America Line vessels throughout the years, including Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet who named Prinsendam (1972), Nieuw Amsterdam II (1983), Rotterdam VI (1997) and Oosterdam (2003).

Additional members of the Dutch Royal Family who are godmothers include Queen Máxima, who named Koningsdam in 2016 and Nieuw Amsterdam in 2010. Then-Queen Beatrix served as Eurodam’s godmother in 2008. Rotterdam V was launched in 1958 by Queen Juliana. Then-Princess Beatrix named Statendam IV in 1957 and Prinses Margriet in 1960. Nieuw Amsterdam II was launched by Queen Wilhelmina in 1937.

Blessing of the Bell ceremony: From left to right: Andrew Donald Chairman and CEO Carnival Corporation, Mrs. Jan Schwartz, President of the HAL Group, Captain Werner Timmers, Mrs. Gere and Mr. Gere

About Rotterdam 
The third vessel in the Pinnacle Class series and the seventh ship to bear the name for Holland America Line, Rotterdam carries 2,668 guests and features highly successful amenities and innovations introduced with her sister ships. Throughout the ship, Rotterdam showcases Holland America Line hallmarks that drive one of the highest guest repeat rates in the industry: exquisite cuisine guided by seven of the world’s leading chefs; gracious, award-winning service; and superbly appointed staterooms and suites, including family and single accommodations.

Rotterdam delivers the best live music at sea with an exclusive collection of world-class performances nightly at Rolling Stone Rock Room with classic rock hits; Lincoln Center Stage, offering chamber music; Billboard Onboard, where live musicians entertain the crowd with chart-topping hits; and the popular B.B. King’s Blues Club, bringing the best of Memphis music to sea. With the 270-degree LED projection at World Stage, Rotterdam immerses guests in panoramic visual and sound effects.

In addition to the impressive Dining Room, guests can delight in specialty restaurants Rudi’s Sel de Mer, a French seafood brasserie; Tamarind, exploring traditions of Southeast Asia, China and Japan; Nami Sushi with tasty sushi and Asian spirits; Pinnacle Grill, the ultimate steakhouse at sea; Canaletto with family-style Italian dining; and Club Orange exclusively for guests in the Club Orange program.

Rotterdam to Explore Northern Europe and the Caribbean 
Rotterdam’s special seven-day “Rotterdam Naming Celebration” cruise departed May 29 and sails roundtrip from Amsterdam, Netherlands, also visiting Kristiansand, Stavanger and Flåm, Norway, with scenic cruising in Sognefjord.

Following the cruise, the ship will homeport out of Amsterdam and spend the season on seven- and 14-day Norway cruises, as well as explorations to Scandinavia, Iceland and the Northern Isles.

On Oct. 15, 1872, Rotterdam I — the first Holland America Line ship — embarked on its maiden voyage from Rotterdam to New York. Exactly 150 years later on Oct. 15, 2022, Rotterdam VII will depart Rotterdam once again as Holland America Line recreates this historic 150th Anniversary crossing with calls at Plymouth, England; New York and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The ship will then spend the season in the Caribbean sailing tropical itineraries roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale.

Find Holland America Line on TwitterFacebook and the Holland America Blog.  Access all social media outlets via the home page at hollandamerica.com.

About Holland America Line [a division of Carnival Corporation and plc (NYSE:  CCL and CUK)] 
Holland America Line has been exploring the world since 1873 and was the first cruise line to offer adventures to Alaska and the Yukon nearly 75 years ago. Its fleet of premium ships visits nearly 400 ports in 114 countries around the world, offering an ideal mid-sized ship experience. A third Pinnacle-class ship, Rotterdam, joined the fleet in July 2021.

Arrival in Rotterdam during the early morning.

2022 April 24; ms Noordam returns to service.

Good morning,

The following Press Release was issued by the company to advised that yet another ship, the ms Noordam has returned to service. At the end of the PR is a listing with the timetable for the remainder of the ships to return.

Holland America Line’s Noordam Returns to Service in Fort Lauderdale

Ship is the eighth in the fleet to restart since industry-wide pause in March 2020

Seattle, Wash., April 25, 2022 — After more than two years since the industrywide pause began due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Holland America Line’s Noordam returned to service Sunday, April 24, 2022, at Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The ship embarked guests for a 21-day Panama Canal transit to Vancouver, Canada, that will position it in Alaska through September.

The ms Noordam (IV) will be returning to Australia at the end of the Alaska Season.

To commemorate the occasion, Holland America Line held a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the terminal to open embarkation, attended by the ship’s captain and senior officers, with flag-waving fanfare from team members lined up to greet guests as they boarded the ship.

The first guests rejoining the ms Noordam in Fort Lauderdale. to the left Hotel General Manager: Mr. Colin Jacob, to the right the Master of the Vessel: Captain Mark Rowden.

 “We are excited to welcome guests aboard Noordam once again as we continue the pace of having all 11 of our ships back in service by June,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “With each relaunch we are able to bring more of our team members back on board and into the Holland America Line family. They have been waiting for this day to welcome our guests and get back to cruising.”

 Since Holland America Line restarted cruising in July 2021, Eurodam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam and Zuiderdam have returned to service with cruises in Alaska, the Caribbean, Europe, Mexico, California Coast and South Pacific. Volendam currently is under charter by the government of the Netherlands, positioned alongside in Rotterdam accommodating Ukrainian refuges.

 Following the Panama Canal transit, Noordam will spend the summer in Alaska, offering seven-day cruises between Vancouver and Whittier, Alaska, along with one special 14-day Great Alaska Explorer roundtrip from Vancouver in September. With a strong cruise presence in Vancouver, Holland America Line is set to position four ships out of the Canadian homeport in 2022. A fifth includes a visit at Vancouver at the end of April. Noordam also will offer longer Cruisetours that combine a three-, four- or seven-day Alaska cruise with an overland exploration of Denali National Park. Holland America Line is the only cruise line that extends land tours up to the unspoiled reaches of Canada’s Yukon Territory.

 After the Alaska season, Noordam departs on an epic sojourn westward with a 34-day Pacific Ocean crossing from San Diego, California, to Sydney, Australia, and a 35-day Australian Circumnavigation roundtrip from Sydney with 15 calls around the continent and scenic cruising in the Great Barrier Reef. The ship will sail into 2023 with 12- to 15-day cruises roundtrip from Sydney that explore New Zealand through March 2023, before crossing back over to North America for another season in Alaska.

 Holland America Line will complete the restart of the remaining ships in the fleet through June with Oosterdam (May 8 in Trieste [Venice], Italy), Zaandam (May 12 in Fort Lauderdale) and Westerdam (June 12 in Seattle, Washington).

2022 April 18; Holland America Celebrates 149th Anniversary

Good morning,  Yesterday my company released  the below press release. We are 149 years young with 1 year remaining to our mile stone of 150 years. Also the naming ceremony of the Rotterdam VII is coming up in May.

Holland America Line Celebrates 149th Anniversary and Prepares for May Naming Ceremony in Rotterdam

 

Premium brand is getting ready to sail into its 150th year and prepares celebrations for Rotterdam, along with four more ships returning to service

 

Seattle, Wash., April 18, 2022 — Holland America Line is commemorating its 149th anniversary today as it moves closer to its 150th milestone next year. To mark the occasion, the day will be celebrated on board with grand desserts, special champagne toasts and festivities for guests and team members.

This is as far as I know the earliest poster which HAL published. Sometime between 1877 and 1880

In addition to the 149th anniversary, the cruise line will continue the celebrations through early June with the restart of Noordam (April 24), Oosterdam (May 8), Zaandam (May 12) and Westerdam (June 12) — bringing the entire fleet of 11 ships back in service — as well as the official naming ceremony for Rotterdam, which will be held May 30 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. In 2022, Holland America Line also celebrates 75 years of Alaska exploration.

ms Eurodam in Rotterdam

“As Holland America Line moves closer to the 150th anniversary of our founding, these past couple of years have shown us the importance of celebrating our milestones,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “This April is an important month with Holland America Line leading the return to Canadian cruising, the restart of Noordam and our anniversaries of our founding and travel to Alaska. We are grateful to be moving along a positive path, not only as a brand, but as an industry.”

The ms Rotterdam VII arriving in Rotterdam as seen from the Northbank of the river Maas.

The ss Rotterdam (I) sailing for the new World. In size she would fit 62 times inside the newest namesake,

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sailing Toward Holland America Line’s 150th Anniversary

As one of the longest-serving and most experienced cruise lines in the world, Holland America Line has become known for its award-winning ships and service. Though transportation and shipping were the mainstays of its business in the 19th century, the company began to offer cruise vacations in 1895. Today, Holland America Line operates 11 ships that visit nearly 400 ports across all seven continents.

Rotterdam’s Official Naming in Rotterdam

Holland America Line’s newest ship, Rotterdam, was delivered in July 2021, but the official naming ceremony will be held May 30. Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands will be the ship’s godmother, carrying on a tradition that began in the 1920s.

Rotterdam will depart Amsterdam, the Netherlands, May 29 on a seven-day “Rotterdam Naming Celebration” cruise that explores the gorgeous landscapes of Norway. When the ship arrives at Rotterdam May 30, a private ceremony will be held for invited guests that will be broadcast throughout the ship. During the voyage, guests will enjoy special events exclusive to the naming sailing, including a celebratory Gala Dinner and an opportunity to participate in the blessing of the ship’s bell, along with surprises and commemorative gifts.

For more information about Holland America Line, consult a travel advisor, call 1-877-SAIL HAL (877-724-5425) or visit hollandamerica.com.

2022, March 31: ms Volendam to help with the Refugee Effort in Rotterdam

Good morning, You might find the below Press Release of Interest.

Holland America Line Ship Will Become Temporary Home for Ukrainian Refugees in the Netherlands

 
Volendam will house and feed up to 1,500 people as part of government’s commitment to help families

 

Rotterdam, Netherlands, March 31, 2022 — Holland America Line‘s Volendam will be used to accommodate Ukrainian refugees as part of an agreement announced by Netherlands and City of Rotterdam government officials. The ship will dock in Rotterdam for three months to provide a temporary home for approximately 1,500 Ukrainians, part of a larger commitment from the Netherlands to accommodate 50,000 people who fled the war in their homeland.

 

“We are in a unique position to accommodate the immediate need for food and housing, so we felt it was very important to work with the City of Rotterdam and charter this ship,” said Gus Antorcha, president, Holland America Line. “Our company was founded in Rotterdam around the mission of helping immigrants find a better life. So today we’re proud to be a small part of a similar mission for Ukrainians who have tragically been displaced.”

 

Under the agreement to charter Volendam, Holland America Line will provide three hot meals per day, private stateroom accommodations, housekeeping services, use of public spaces, fitness facilities, internet access, and other necessities. Volendam will be staffed with approximately 650 crew members.

“We are known for our service and hospitality, and our team is ready to welcome our new guests as we would welcome guests into our own home,” said Captain Ryan Whitaker. “It will truly be an honor for us to make Volendam a comfortable and caring environment for these families who have been through so much.”

Volendam was scheduled to return to service May 15, with voyages from Rotterdam to Norway, the British Isles and Iceland. To accommodate the three-month commitment, Holland America Line will cancel three of those voyages and resume service on July 3 instead. Guests on canceled cruises are being notified today and will be accommodated on similar itineraries.

“We are very sorry for the inconvenience this will cause to guests booked on the three canceled cruises,” Antorcha said. “We hope they understand the unprecedented nature of this situation and why we felt it was important to work with the government on this initiative in support of these families in need.”

Volendam will be docked at Merwehaven, a cargo port on the north side of the River Maas in Rotterdam. Remaining docked will ensure Ukrainian families can transit easily to and from services in Rotterdam.

 

Holland America Group has already been working with its own team members who are Ukrainian. A $1 million emergency assistance fund provides direct financial support. Team members from the region also receive counseling assistance, free internet service to communicate with family, and scheduling accommodations such as early disembarkation or an extension to remain on board as needed.

 

The family foundation of parent company Carnival Corporation’s chairman Micky Arison and his wife Madeleine also announced a pledge of $3 million to charities helping Ukrainian refugees. In addition, Holland America Line will look to raise awareness and funds through its On Deck for a Cause program, in which guests on every cruise may take part in a non-competitive 5K fundraising walk. The money raised will go to Direct Relief.

“We stand for peace and our hearts go out to everyone whose lives have been upended by the invasion of Ukraine,” said Arnold Donald, president and chief executive officer of Carnival Corporation & plc. “We have crew members from 145 countries and we sail with guests from nations around the globe, so we feel deeply the impact of this humanitarian crisis and we join many others in supporting relief efforts.”

2022 Feb 01 Press Release HAL extends Military on board spending offer to Canadians

 

Holland America Line Extends Military Onboard Spending Money Offer to Canadians; Now Includes First Responders and Healthcare Heroes for Select Cruises Through May 2022

Bonus credit good for sailings to a variety of destinations including Alaska, Europe, Caribbean, Mexico and Panama Canal

 

Seattle, Wash., Feb. 1, 2022 — To honor and thank first responders and healthcare workers, Holland America Line is extending its Military Appreciation Offer to members of these communities with $100 Onboard Spending Money. The premium cruise line is now also including heroes in Canada, along with the U.S., in the offer.

The bonus credit is available for select Have It All cruise bookings to a variety of destinations through May 2022. Reservations must be made by March 15, 2022.

“As a company committed to service, we wanted to recognize those who continue to give incredibly selfless service with an extra ‘thank you’ for answering the call,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “Our hope is that while they are relaxing on vacation with us, they can enjoy their time on board just a little more.”

The appreciation offer — that now includes first responders, healthcare workers and active, retired and veteran members of the military from the U.S. and Canada — can be earned on a variety of cruises to Alaska, Europe, the Caribbean, Hawaii, Mexico, Pacific Coast, Canada/New England and Panama Canal:

  • Alaska and Cruisetours: 7-day cruises roundtrip from Seattle, Washington, or Vancouver, B.C., Canada; or between Whittier, Alaska, and Vancouver.
    • Every Alaska cruise includes a visit to one or more of Alaska’s iconic glacier destinations.
    • Ports include Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan or Skagway, Alaska, along with Victoria, B.C., Canada.
    • 9- to 18-day Cruisetours that combine a cruise with an overland journey to Denali and the Yukon are included.
    • Aboard Eurodam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Noordam and Zuiderdam.
  • Canada/New England: 7- or 9-day itineraries from Fort Lauderdale to Montreal, Quebec, Canada; and between Boston, Massachusetts, and Montreal.
    • Ports of call include Bar Harbor, Maine; and Canada’s Halifax and Sydney, Nova Scotia; Charlottetown, P.E.I.; and Quebec City, Quebec.
    • Aboard Zaandam.
  • Caribbean: 6- to 11-day cruises roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale that all include a call at Half Moon Cay, Holland America Line’s pristine Bahamian private-island.
    • Southern, western, eastern, tropical and partial Panama Canal itineraries.
    • Guests will explore a combination of ports depending on the itinerary, including the islands of Aruba, Barbados, Curaçao; St. Thomas, Puerto Rico, St. Lucia, Dominican Republic, Grand Turk and Jamaica.
    • Aboard Rotterdam, Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam and Nieuw Statendam.
  • Europe: Seven- to 28-day cruises, including back-to-back Collectors’ Voyages, to Norway, the Baltic, Mediterranean, Iberia and transatlantic.
    • Depart from Barcelona, Spain; Lisbon, Portugal; Civitavecchia (Rome) and Venice, Italy; Piraeus (Athens), Greece; and Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
    • Transatlantics depart from Fort Lauderdale and cruise eastbound.
    • Aboard Nieuw Statendam, Oosterdam, Rotterdam and Volendam.
  • Hawaii: 18-day cruises roundtrip from San Diego.
    • Calls at Honolulu, Hilo, Kona, Nawiliwili and Kahului, Hawaii, and Ensenada, Mexico.
    • Aboard Koningsdam.
  • Mexico: 7- to 14-day cruises roundtrip from San Diego.
    • Calls include the Mexican ports of Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, Cabo San Lucas, Loreto and Pichilingue.
    • Aboard Koningsdam and Zuiderdam.
  • Pacific Coast: 7-day cruises roundtrip from San Diego along California coast.
    • Ports include Avalon, Santa Barbara and an overnight in San Francisco, along with Ensenada, Mexico.
    • Aboard Koningsdam.
  • Panama Canal: 14- to 19-day transits between San Diego and Fort Lauderdale though the famed Panama Canal.
    • Calls along the way in Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica and Guatemala.
    • Aboard Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam and Zuiderdam.

Seattle, San Diego and Fort Lauderdale are convenient drive-to departure cities and easy-access homeports. Holland America Line’s sailings are especially convenient for the many troops stationed California and Florida.

Onboard, the appreciation credit can be used for shore excursions, spa treatments, beverages, specialty dining, gift shop purchases and more. The offer is valid with Holland America Line’s “The Ultimate Upgrade Event” promotion available with the Have It All premium fare that includes stateroom upgrades, 50% reduced deposit, and $75 kids fares in Alaska when sailings as a third or fourth guest, along with four popular amenities: shore excursions, a drink package, specialty dining and Wi-Fi.

For more information about how to book the Military Appreciation Offer, consult a travel advisor, call 1-877-SAIL HAL (877-724-5425) or visit hollandamerica.com.

— # # # —

Find Holland America Line on TwitterFacebook and the Holland America Blog.  Access all social media outlets via the home page at hollandamerica.com.

 

About Holland America Line [a division of Carnival Corporation and plc (NYSE:  CCL and CUK)]
Holland America Line has been exploring the world since 1873 and was the first cruise line to offer adventures to Alaska and the Yukon nearly 75 years ago. Its fleet of premium ships visits nearly 400 ports in 114 countries around the world, offering an ideal mid-sized ship experience. A third Pinnacle-class ship, Rotterdam, joined the fleet in July 2021.

The leader in premium cruising, Holland America Line’s ships feature innovative initiatives and a diverse range of enriching experiences focused on destination exploration and personalized travel. The best live music at sea fills each evening at Music Walk, and dining venues feature exclusive selections from Holland America Line’s esteemed Culinary Council of world-famous chefs.

2022 Jan. 27 Press Release Naming ms Rotterdam

Holland America Line Celebrates Naming of Rotterdam with Ceremony in Namesake City and Special Seven-Day Voyage  

 
Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands to serve as the ship’s godmother

 

Seattle, Wash., Jan. 27, 2022 — Holland America Lines newest ship Rotterdam is set to get the royal treatment at a naming ceremony in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, May 30, 2022. Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands will be the ship’s godmother, carrying on a Dutch royal tradition that began in the 1920s.

 

Rotterdam’s special seven-day “Rotterdam Naming Celebration” cruise sails roundtrip from Amsterdam, Netherlands, departing May 29 and also visits Kristiansand, Stavanger and Flåm, Norway, with scenic cruising in Sognefjord.

 

“Our new Rotterdam is a spectacular ship, and we are thrilled to have its naming ceremony scheduled with a celebratory cruise that allows our guests to join the festivities and officially welcome her to the fleet,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “Our history is deeply rooted in the Netherlands, and it was only fitting to name our newest Rotterdam in the city of Rotterdam with a royal godmother to honor our Dutch roots. We are deeply grateful that Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet will once again act as godmother to a Holland America Line ship.”

 

When the ship arrives at Rotterdam May 30, a private ceremony will be held for invited guests that will be broadcast throughout the ship. During the voyage, guests will enjoy special events exclusive to the naming sailing, including a celebratory Gala Dinner and an opportunity to participate in the blessing of the ship’s bell, along with surprises and commemorative gifts.

 

Once the ship departs Rotterdam, guests will spend the remainder of the voyage exploring the ports of Kristiansand, Stavanger and the stunning fjords and charming villages of Norway. A highlight of the itinerary is a day of scenic cruising in Sognefjord. The largest and deepest fjord in Norway, the “King of the Fjords” is one of the world’s most beautiful destinations lined with majestic mountains and lush landscapes. In Flåm, the famous railway offers an unforgettable experience, climbing from sea level to 2,800 feet, crossing back and forth over rivers and passing through 20 tunnels.

 

Book the ‘Rotterdam Naming Celebration’ Cruise with Have It All

Travelers who want to be a part of the festivities can book Rotterdam’s naming voyage and join in the celebrations. For guests who appreciate taking an inclusive vacation with extra amenities factored upfront into the price, Holland America Line’s “Have It All” premium package includes shore excursions, beverages, specialty dining and Wi-Fi in one base cruise fare.

 

“Have It All” guests on this cruise will receive one shore excursion up to $100 value or $100 off any one tour; a Signature Beverage Package that includes up to 15 drinks per day; one night specialty dining in Pinnacle Grill, Tamarind or Canaletto; and a Wi-Fi package.

 

“Have it All” fares for the “Rotterdam Naming Celebration” cruise begin at $1,749 per person, single occupancy. Taxes, fees and port expenses are additional.  Cruise-only fares begin at $1,399 per person.

 

A Long Royal Relationship

Holland America Line’s connection to The House of Orange goes back nearly a century to Prince Hendrik launching Statendam III in 1929. Since then, members of the Dutch Royal Family have launched 11 more Holland America Line vessels throughout the years, including Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet who named Prinsendam (1972), Nieuw Amsterdam III (1983), Rotterdam VI (1997) and Oosterdam (2003).

 

Additional members of the Dutch Royal Family who are godmothers include Queen Máxima, who named Koningsdam in 2016 and Nieuw Amsterdam in 2010. Then-Queen Beatrix served as Eurodam’s godmother in 2008. Rotterdam V was launched in 1958 by Queen Juliana. Then-Princess Beatrix named Statendam IV in 1957 and Prinses Margriet in 1960. Nieuw Amsterdam II was launched by Queen Wilhelmina in 1937.

 

Rotterdam was delivered by the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy July 30, 2021, and sailed a transatlantic first voyage before spending the fall and winter on its inaugural Caribbean season sailing roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Beginning in May, the ship will explore Europe, heading to Norway, the Baltic, British Isles and Iceland, all sailing roundtrip from Amsterdam.

2021 Dec. 23; Holland America press release Zuiderdam returns to service.

Zuiderdam Resumes Service from Port of San Diego; Second Ship from California and Sixth Back to Cruising

 
Click to Tweet: .@HALcruises’ Zuiderdam resumes #cruising from the West Coast. Ship departs San Diego Dec. 23 and will sail roundtrip through April 2022. Three additional HAL ships also to cruise from San Diego in the coming months.

Seattle, Wash., Dec 23, 2021 — Holland America Line’s Zuiderdam returned to service today from Port of San Diego in California, the second Holland America ship to resume service in San Diego since the industrywide pause.

 Zuiderdam’s crew celebrated the return in holiday spirit with sleighbells ringing and Santa and his elves on hand to open embarkation and welcome guests back on on board. Zuiderdam joins Koningsdam, which resumed service in San Diego Oct. 10. Holland America Line now has six ships cruising again in the Caribbean, Mexico and along the Pacific Coast of the United States.

  

Zuiderdam Hotel General Manager Colin Jacob (left with scissors) helps 7-year-old Levi Stengel cut the ribbon to welcome the first guests aboard Zuiderdam, as the ship resumes cruising after a several-month pause. Catherine Stengel, Levi’s mother, stands behind him, and Captain Frank van der Hoeven is to the right of Levi.

 “San Diego is an important homeport for us, and we are excited to have two ships back in full-time operation here with the restart of Zuiderdam today,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “We are proud to be part of the San Diego community, which has continued to show us tremendous support throughout our restart. There’s no better way to kick off Zuiderdam’s season than with a holiday cruise full of joyful guests and our grateful crew who are happy to have them back on board.”

 Zuiderdam’s first cruise is a 10-day “Mexico and Sea of Cortez” that will be followed by Panama Canal departures and a grand 35-day South Pacific sojourn and Pacific cruise. Koningsdam sails a series of seven-day cruises to the California Coast or Mexico and two longer Hawaii voyages that run through April 3, 2022. Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam each make one call at San Diego in spring 2022.

 

Earlier in the week on Dec. 19, while remaining alongside at San Diego’s B-Street Cruise Terminal, Zuiderdam took part in the San Diego Bay Parade of Lights with an illuminated “Ho Ho Ho” on the ship’s side to show community support.

About Holland America Line in San Diego:

Holland America Line has been homeporting from the Port of San Diego since the 1990s. For the upcoming 2021-22 season, the cruise line will bring more than 81,000 guests to the city, which will result in more than $35 million in direct spending.

Operationally, each ship visit directly contributes $364,000 to the local economy in provisioning (fuel, food, flowers, piano tuning, supplies), port taxes, and spending. When Koningsdam and Zuiderdam call at San Diego, both ships will connect to shore power, reducing the ships’ carbon footprint.

Throughout the years, Holland America Line has been actively involved with more than 30 nonprofits in San Diego County through giving, shipboard lunches and cruise donations, including La Jolla Playhouse, San Ysidro Health and Girl Scouts San Diego.

For more information about Holland America Line, consult a travel advisor, call 1-877-SAIL HAL (877-724-5425) or visit hollandamerica.com.

2021 Dec. 21 Happy Holidays

Dear Readers

My blog is still in limbo as far as daily posts are concerned as I am still at home. I have not been able to obtain an L visa from the USA embassy in London yet as they are on reduced capacity and HAL Marine operation is also not ready to let me start hopping  from ship to ship again.

The fleet is slowly getting back on it’s fleet. The next ship Zuiderdam is due to depart for her first cruise on December 23 from San Diego to the Mexican Riviera.

By that date we will have:

Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam and Zuiderdam back in operation.

Which leaves Zaandam, Volendam, Oosterdam and Noordam and Westerdam still on standby.  Those are scheduled to come back in service in 2023. Please see www.HollandAmerica.com for the planned cruises.

So while I am still at home. much concentration is on the Holland America hobby side.

I have added  the biography of Commodore Bijl to the site. See under Captains of the past tab which might make for some interesting reading.

Then I am also starting to gear up for 2023 when the company will celebrate its 150 years of going strong. Several books are in the pipe line and more news about that in January when the draft cover designs have been made.

In the mean time I am wishing everybody a Merry Christmas and a Happy and also Healthy 2022.  Times might be difficult but no doubt there is a light at the end of every tunnel.

2021 Nov 21; Nieuw Statendam returns to service.

Good morning,

I am still at home waiting for better times to come. The company is still reluctant to restart the support program that I deliver to the fleet as it involves hopping from ship to ship. Also I am still waiting for the USA embassies to re-open so I can renew my travelling Visa.

But there is some good news. Today the 5th. ship of Holland America returned to service. The ms Nieuw Statendam, 2nd ship of the Pinnacle Class started her Caribbean Cruise season, under the command of Captain noel O’Driscoll.

The company issued the below Press Release.

 

Nieuw Statendam Returns to South Florida Cruising Today and Marks Holland America Line’s Fifth Ship to Reenter Service


Click to Tweet: .@HALcruises’ Nieuw Statendam returns to South Florida #cruising today, kicking off its #Caribbean season. The Pinnacle Class ship marks fifth

for the cruise line to reenter service.

 

Seattle, Wash., Nov. 21, 2021 — Holland America Line’s Nieuw Statendam departed Fort Lauderdale, Florida, today on its first cruise since the industrywide pause last year. The ship marks the fifth Holland America Line vessel to reenter service, joining RotterdamKoningsdamEurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam.

Ribbon cutting ceremony in the Terminal before receiving the first guests.

To commemorate the occasion, Holland America Line held a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the terminal to open embarkation, and team members greeted guests with flag-waving fanfare as they boarded the ship. Nieuw Statendam set sail on a seven-day western Caribbean itinerary that will visit Nassau, Bahamas; Ocho Rios and Port Royal, Jamaica; and Half Moon Cay, Holland America Line’s private island in the Bahamas.

Half Moon Cay, our private island, is one of the ports of call during the Caribbean cruise season.

“Today is another milestone in our return to service, with Nieuw Statendam starting operation just in time for Thanksgiving, and we have a lot to be thankful for this year that we’re getting back in the water,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “Today is a great day for Holland America Line, and our team members can’t wait to welcome guests on board.”

Nieuw Statendam will spend from November through April in the Caribbean on cruises ranging from seven to 11 days, all roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades. Guests looking for a longer getaway can embark on a Collectors’ Voyage — combined back-to-back itineraries that offer an in-depth exploration covering more than one part of the region.

Every Caribbean cruise includes a call at Half Moon Cay, Holland America Line’s award-winning private Bahamian island. This quaint sanctuary has evolved into a tropical playground for cruise guests and features the white-sand beachestwo-story villas and private cabanas; delicious dining venues like Lobster Shack; a children’s waterpark; and a variety of fun-filled tours for nature lovers, adventurous travelers and explorers.

 

Holland America Line has been homeporting from Port Everglades since the 1990s. Operationally, each ship visit contributes $364,000 directly to the local economy in provisioning (fuel, food, flowers, piano tuning, supplies, etc.), port taxes and spending. Holland America Line works with nearly 100 South Florida vendors who supply the company and its ships with goods and services.

Throughout the years, Holland America Line has been actively involved with more than 30 nonprofit organizations in South Florida through giving, shipboard lunches and cruise donations, including Seafarers’ House, Henderson Behavioral Health, Coast Guard Women’s Leadership Initiative, Symphony of the Americas, The Opera Society and more.

 

For more information about Holland America Line, consult a travel advisor, call 1-877-SAIL HAL (877-724-5425) or visit hollandamerica.com.

Captain Noel O’Driscoll and his Nieuw Statendam Team getting ready for setting sail again,

 

2021 oct. 28; Latest Press Release Art on board the ms Rotterdam VII

Holland America Line’s Rotterdam Sets Sail with World-Class Floating Art Gallery Valued at Over $4.1 Million

More than 2,500 pieces from dozens of global artists enhance the ship’s design 

 Seattle, Wash., Oct. 27, 2021 — Holland America Line ships have long been regarded as floating art galleries for their extensive collections of museum-quality pieces. When Rotterdam sets sail for the first time Oct. 20, 2021, guests are in for a visually rewarding journey with some of the most thought-provoking, striking and bold pieces in the fleet — including historical works and memorabilia from beloved previous sister ships.

Rotterdam’s art collection is valued at more than $4.1 million and was curated by Oslo-based YSA Design and London-based ArtLink, who collaborated with acclaimed hospitality design atelier Tihany Design. The result is a museum at sea with 2,645 pieces of diverse works ranging in value from $500 to $620,000 that spans the decks, public rooms and staterooms.

More than 37 nationalities are represented by Rotterdam’s artists, with the greatest number of contributors coming from the Netherlands, United States and United Kingdom. Artists also hail from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Republic of Korea, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and Ukraine.

Many of the pieces focus on entertainment, showcasing themes of music, dance and movement, weaving the ship’s narrative of a “new sound of cruising” into the art. The works are in many media, including photography, painting, mixed media, illustration, prints and sculpture.

Holland America Line History Finds a Home on Rotterdam

Holland America Line’s newest Rotterdam is the seventh ship in the fleet to bear the name, and some previous works of art from Rotterdam VI, which left the company in 2020, have found a new home on the newbuild. Eight historical paintings are now on Rotterdam, including depictions of Rotterdam I, Rotterdam II, Rotterdam III, Rotterdam IV and Rotterdam V. The ship also hosts three previous Rotterdam ship models, and the bell from Rotterdam VI can be found in the Crow’s Nest.

Fun Facts, Figures and Highlights About Rotterdam’s Art Collection:

  • The Atrium Sculpture

    The largest and most expensive piece is “Harps,” a 7.5-ton stainless steel sculpture in the Atrium that spans three decks. With dynamic color-changing spot lighting and a mirrored ceiling, the work is a striking focal point on board. “Harps” was produced and designed by ArtLink, based on a concept by Tihany Design. It is valued at $620,000.

 

 

  • Book art

    The smallest works are by Betty Pepper, who uses reworked books and adds intricate details and scenes made from old maps. They can be seen in the forward stairwell between decks 7 and 8. The exquisitely small elements are a testament to Pepper’s ability to work at a scale that few artists can master.

 

 

 

  • Aft Staircase Zoology

    Each of the stairwells has a theme that reaches from top to bottom. The theme of the forward stairs is architecture, midship stairs is music and aft stairs is zoology.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Rolling Stone

    The oldest artist is Baron Wolman (deceased), born in 1937. The U.S. native was the chief photographer for Rolling Stone magazine from 1967 until late 1970. He was ranked among the 20th century’s elite and most collectible photographers.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Neptune Lounge

    The youngest artist is Leva Berlande. The 31-year-old rising artist is a student from Latvia and has a painting featured in the Neptune Lounge.

 

                                                       Sel de Mer Wall mural

  • As with Rudi’s Sel de Mer on Nieuw Statendam, Master Chef Rudi Sodamin’s son and emerging artist Magnus Sodamin created a visually stimulating mural that adorns the wall in his father’s namesake specialty restaurant on Rotterdam. Called “Oceans Feast,” the work measures 23 feet long and 3.6 feet tall.

  • Italian artist Federico Picci contributes conversation starters that tie in magically with the ship’s design. His photographs capture how music would look if we could not only listen to it but see it, too. In one image, balloons float out of a piano, representing the evanescence of something that evaporates in the air as it is created, like the element of sound.

 

  • One of the most striking and expensive pieces is a dazzling, illuminated crystal “Key” (treble clef) created by Dutch artist Hans van Bentem for Deck 3, midship. The piece is valued at $27,000.

 

  • Considered among the most avant-garde pieces in the collection is a fiberglass sculpture of an otter in the aft stairwell lobby on Deck 9 by Spanish artist Okuda San Miguel. San Miguel is known for his distinctive style of colorful geometric patterns that portray animals, skulls, religious iconography and human figures.

 

  • In the embarkation area is a work titled “Billie Holiday” by Ani Abakumova. It is made up of 3 miles of threads — 8,000 threads in total. Abakumova’s husband is a mathematician who developed an algorithm that enables her to create images from threads that change color without using paint.

 

  • One of the most valuable works is a mixed media on canvas piece in the forward stairwell lobby on Deck 8 by Mehdi Ghadyanloo, an Iranian artist, painter and muralist known for his gigantic trompe l’oeil–style murals. Ghadyanloo recently had solo exhibitions in Almine Rech’s galleries in Paris and Brussels, and now Holland America Line guests can enjoy his captivating art.

 

  • Yongsun Jang, from Republic of Korea, welds cross sections of stainless-steel pipes to configure clusters of “cells,” then puts it all together to represent different organic beings. For Rotterdam, he created cello and pan flute sculptures for the B.B. King’s Blues Club/Lincoln Center Stage space.

 

  • The vibrant work of Lisa Krannichfield is on display in the Club Orange specialty restaurant. Her pieces meld the border between masculine and feminine and explore what it means to be fashionable and make a statement.

Art in Club Orange Restaurant.

Art in Club Orange Restaurant

 

 

 

 

 

 

Guests can admire the decks inside and out and discover inspired works from a global assembly of emerging artists who share the spaces alongside some of the most renowned talent in the world.

 

Japanese Dress

 

Strawhouses

 

Dubai

Musical note

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