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Nieuw Statendam, Western Mediterranean and Atlantic

5

Our second HAL Cruise and great value last year - with free flights from Heathrow included in the Fare.
Med Itinerary - From Rome to Barcelona. We like independant exploring and the HAL excursions (like most cruise lines) are expensive. HAL is a very cosmopolitan mix of cruisers, mainly North Americans, Brits and Dutch - more couples, less families. Quite a spread of ages but probably mainly 30+ with the majority 40+

We had a clear view Balcony - high and forward - so a little overlooked by the Bridge, but otherwise a great location with ease of access to decks above and quiet location.

Love the food on HAL (variety , choice , quality) , the Salad Bars are Lunch are great and a good way to balence the large multi course dinners each evening! IMO a notch up on (sister Carnival Brand) P&O and that of RCL (certainly in the MDR). Always super friendly staff. Initially put on their flexible dining for the Main DiningRoom had no issue getting switched to a second sitting quiet table.

Drinks are fairly pricey. however good quality and very friendly staff who very quickly got to learn what you wanted and enjoyed a chat. If your managing a budget (who is not!) they did have a happy hour on the ship - but not on the outside decks which was a little frustrating! . It was better value in the Restaurant to buy wine by the Bottle and the MDR satff always allowed us to use half a bottle and get the bottle out the next night. Of course if you are 'big drinkers' - HAL have the 'Have It All' option which is good value especially in far flung desitantions where the European Roaming may not be included on your phone contract [if you need to stay in touch]

The show times and early sitting / late sitting did not align so we often only caught the end of the main show. HAL dont have the size of main shows in the world show lounge [they are rather low key in comparison] of say RCI but then they have excellent Music Venues with a strong live music (Rock and Jazz).

We like the little luxury touches - chocolates on pillows / chilled fruit water waiting at embarkation etc.

Statendam is Beautiful, staterooms lovely, fantastically well maintained ship, smooth vibration free, great gym, pickleball courts, nice deck area. There seems to be alot of space per passenger (again it feels more premium) An unexpected highlight were the secluded 'curtained' seating areas surrounding the main pool that you would normally only get by paying for a Cabanna - a nice touch and great for relaxing with a cocktail watching the sailaway.

In Summary we always enjoy all our cruises and can see the merits of all the cruises we have done (each line does something we like) but for couples, wanting a bit of luxury / but not stuffy good value (especially late deals or free flight deals) friendly crusing with a high quality food offering and great live Music I'd say HAL was difficult to beat and we will 100% be back with HAL

Paul
Post Date: 22/01/2023
Score
Cruise Overall
5
Ship Overall
5
Dining
5
Service Onboard
5
Accommodation
5
Public Rooms
5
Boarding & Disembarking
5
Excursions
3
Value for Money
5
Review Images
Customer Reviews
Dorothy wrote a review in Aug, 2021
Theo wrote a review in Mar, 2022
Great service and the food is decent quality. In my opinion the ship needs some modernising.
Neil wrote a review in Mar, 2022
Dorothy wrote a review in May, 2022

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