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CruiseClout score: 95.0
ms Zuiderdam: Fun, fine wines & loads of youthful energy
The first ship in Holland America's Vista-class series, the ms Zuiderdam uses the latest industry and environmental technologies, such as her use of a diesel-electric power plant for optimal energy efficiency and an Azipod propulsion system.
As with most of the Holland America cruise line, this ship features exquisite art and antiques while serving up a combination of youthful energy with traditional cruise fare. Whether it's more gourmet dining, such as Le Cirque, or a pub crawl throughout the ship, there is sure to be something for everyone.
Who will like sailing on Zuiderdam
This ship typically attracts an older crowd, usually from early 50s to mid 70s. However, this ship also has amenities for children and can attract the young at heart.
Where Holland America's Zuiderdam sails
The Zuiderdam sails the Southern Caribbean and through the Panama Canal in winter. Summer sailings include Mediterranean cruises including La Goulette (Tunis and Carthage), Barcelona, Spain Monte Carlo, Monaco Santa Margherita Ligure (Portofino) Italy Civitavecchia (Rome) and Venice Italy, and Istanbul, Turkey.
Probably most notable is the Dancing with the Stars at Sea program, where passengers are offered lessons in waltz, cha cha and jive. Following lessons, the top dancers compete on the ship to win a performance on the last night of the cruise. The "champion" then wins free tickets for Holland America's Dancing with the Stars Champions cruise.
The Culinary Arts Center features a demonstration kitchen and offer interactive gourmet cooking lessons, taught either by culinary guests or the cruise's chefs. The Pub Crawl through the ship is $19.95, but gets you four drinks not including beer and the raucous crowd you might meet. Meanwhile, the Explorations Cafe is a comfortable, coffee house environment where you can read or surf the internet. Also, an Indonesian tea is offered usually once during every cruise and is not to be missed.
Although most passengers are older, there are still amenities for kids. Club HAL offers facilities and activities for kids ages 3-12, while The Loft is designed exclusively for teens to have fun, socialize and hang out with people their own age.
Vista Show Lounge features talented vocalists, dancers, illusionists, comedians and variety acts. The Culinary Arts Center becomes the Queens Lounge at night, with performances of contemporary and classic rock covers by the HALCats, the cruise line's own band. The Crow's Nest offers beautiful views by day, but at night turns into a nightclub.
This ship remains fairly casual for shorter voyages, with several formal nights with cocktail dresses and sport jackets. Longer voyages will usually have more formal attire.
Interested in a cruise on this ship?
Have you sailed on ms Zuiderdam? What was your take on the art and ambience? We would love to hear about your experience — please share!
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Top highlights on this ship
- The Waterford crystal seahorse greets visitors and introduces them to the art throughout the ship.
- The Lido Deck pool offers a retractable roof for colder days, along with a large polar bear statue to keep you company.
- The Greenhouse Spa offers a full hydrotherapy pool.
- Le Cirque at Pinnacle Grill brings the famous New York restaurant to life on the ship.