Cruise Ships


Major makeover adds to all the excitement

When Rotterdam sailed from Fort Lauderdale on December 16, 2009, guests enjoyed many new Signature of Excellence enhancements and amenities completed in a 28-day drydock in the Bahamas.

She received the trendy Mix lounge, innovative Retreat Pool, classy Showroom at Sea and the addition of the industry’s only Lanai staterooms. Every stateroom now features a fresh new cabin and bathroom design as well.

Says executive vice president Richard Meadows: “Rotterdam looks spectacular. The enhancements are going to impress our guests and engage them in exciting, new ways.”

ms Rotterdam of Holland America Line

The upgrades began with new fixtures and soft goods in staterooms and bathrooms. New Lanai accommodations were added along with several additional staterooms on the aft portion of each ship. Additional highlights feature a resort pool called The Retreat, the Showroom at Sea, Canaletto Italian restaurant and the new Mix lounge midship.

The most visible and engaging alteration is to the aft of Rotterdam, allowing for a new resort-style pool area on Lido deck called The Retreat. With a shallow area where guests may lounge in chairs and dip their toes in the water, the new pool invites guests to relax and enjoy a new pool bar, an upscale pizzeria called Slice, and a giant LED screen for evening movies. A new canopy and wind screens provide additional covered seating for the Lido Restaurant, too.

In the Lido restaurant, Canaletto comes to life for dinner when a section is transformed each evening into the complimentary specialty restaurant with glass partitions and an Italian ambiance. Dishes range from putanesca to penne alla vodka. Although reservations are encouraged for this casual dining venue, walk-ups will be accepted. Canaletto is open for dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

The latest enhancements include several other public areas.

  • The Casino and Piano bars were reconfigured into a multi-themed area called Mix with three separate bars - Martinis, Champagne and Spirits & Ales - serving their namesakes. Next door, the high-energy casino was redesigned and the main show lounge was transformed into the Showroom at Sea with the ambiance of a glamorous nightclub and a new slate of shows. Carpets were replaced in most public areas and an upscale luxury jewelry shop called Merabella also was added midship.
  • All staterooms received new decor, carpeting and soft goods and bathrooms saw an “extreme” makeover with new vanities and cabinetry. Rotterdam now has an additional 44 staterooms with additional verandah, new Lanai and inside availability.
  • 23 staterooms near the spa (on Verandah deck) have become “spa staterooms” featuring a variety of enhanced spa amenities. On Lower Promenade Deck, 39 new Lanai staterooms are created by replacing existing windows with lanai doors that open directly onto the walk-around promenade, and adding a few additional rooms in this category.
  • Maasdam, Ryndam and Statendam will receive Signature of Excellence enhancements beginning in early 2010. Veendam received all enhancements in April 2009.

    Future enhancements will be completed in two phases. First, in a series of drydocks in 2010 and 2011, the three additional ships will receive the addition of Mix, Showroom at Sea, Canaletto and other public area enhancements, and stateroom upgrades. The second series of drydocks in 2012 and 2013 will add The Retreat and new staterooms on the aft portion of the ships, as well as forward verandah and spa staterooms.

    Vital statistics

    Operated by Holland America Line
    Built at Fincantieri, Italy
    Entered service: December 1997
    Refurbished: 2009
    Registered: Netherlands
    Gross tonnage: 59,885 tons
    Cost: $250 million
    Passengers: 1,404
    Passenger decks: 12
    Lifts: 12
    Crew: 600
    Officers: Dutch
    Staterooms: 660 including

    Length: 780ft
    Width: 106ft
    Draught: 26ft
    Engines: Diesel-electric


    Two dining rooms (two sittings), alternative dining options, casino, cinema, library, one outside swimming pool, two swimming pools (one with magradome), beauty salon, fitness centre, self-service launderette.

    Holland America Line

    Holland America may be one of the oldest names in cruising, celebrating its 145th anniversary in 2018, but it believes in keeping up with the times. More...

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