Life aboard the NoordamFebruary 1 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C
Settling nicely into our cruise ship - Holland America’s Noordam. It has had a recent makeover and looks fresh and very comfortable with all new carpets and furnishings. We have a nice stateroom on the Upper Verandah Deck, with a large balcony. The bathroom even has a small bath as well as a shower, although I don’t know if I would get out of it once in! We have bathrobes and Elemis toiletries which is nice. Given the number of sea days, we decided to buy the Green House Spa Package, featuring hot mosaic-tiled beds, thalassotherapy pool, steam rooms and sauna - lovely to relax in with views of the ocean.
The entertainment is not as varied as Royal Caribbean, and the emphasis is on more classical tastes, with musicians performing on the intimate Lincoln Center Stage or in BB Kings Blues Club. The Duelling Pianos are also very popular. There are a number of Coffee and Chat sessions with the personable Cruise Director Chris (beep!). He delivered a very interesting audio-visual presentation on the history and development of the Holland America Line, including its role during the war transporting troops. Interesting to note that the line’s first ship - the Rotterdam - was built in 1872 in Renfrew! All very different from our usual fare, but very enjoyable. The first full show in the World Stage Theatre featured the singers and dancers in a tribute to Billboard hits, and was of a very high standard.
The food so far has been outstanding. We have a lovely table for two in the dining room (how anti-social!), but usually go to the Lido buffet for breakfast - great variety including excellent omelettes.
Our Captain’s welcome toast was a poignant occasion as the the officers and representatives of all departments came on stage to pay tribute to Captain John Scott in this his final voyage after 45 years before disembarking in his home city of Auckland. The Captain delivered a heartfelt speech. He finished by saying that, as we will have noticed, the first day at sea had been quite rocky, and we can all claim to have sailed through a hurricane - defined as 64 knots, when we had experienced 64.5 knots.
All in all a very relaxing and pleasant start to the cruise. Just arrived in Hobart, Tasmania. The ship has docked within walking distance of the town so we are looking forward to exploring it - hopefully no Devils! 👿Read more