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MS Veendam was named after a city in the Groninge Province in the northern Netherlands. The fourth of Holland America Line’s S-class ships, it was built in 1996 and underwent refurbishing in 2009. The 57,092 tonne Veendam has 10 passenger decks and can carry 1,350 passengers and 580 crew. It attracts families with kids as it offers dedicated areas and programs for different age groups.

Accommodation

MS Veendam has 674 staterooms: Inside (141 to 226 square feet), Ocean-view & Lanai (174 to 256 square feet), Verandah Spa (244 square feet with private balcony) and Verandah Suite (283 to 1,273 square feet with private balcony). All staterooms are provided with premium mattress, quality cotton bed linen, flat-screen televisions, DVD player and bathroom amenities. All suites  have fully-stocked mini-bars and personalised stationery as well as the exclusive use of the Neptune Louge.

Food

The main dining room on Veendam is the two-deck Rotterdam Dining Room, which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Other restaurants on board are the Pinnacle Grill, Le Cirque (fine dining), Canaletto (Italian) and Lido Restaurant (buffet).

Activities

The Greenhouse Spa offers standard spa treatments and services, such as facials, massages, thermal suites, teeth whitening and body wraps. The beauty salon provides hair styling and cutting, pedicures and manicures. The fully-equipped gym includes treadmills, stair-steppers, elliptical trainers, stationary bikes, free weights and exercise balls. There are areas for spinning, Pilates and aerobics. Aqua aerobics, tai chi and yoga sessions are also offered.

Families

MS Veendam’s Club HAL provides a wide variety of age-appropriate activities and facilities children aged three to 17 years. Three-six year olds can join activities such as pirate treasure hunts, storytelling, crafts, ice-cream sundae parties and a farewell pajama party. Tweens (seven-12 years) take part in Xbox tournaments, relay races, scavenger hunts and karaoke disco parties. The Loft for Teens (13-17 years) has mocktail mixology classes, late night sporting competitions, hip hop classes, scavenger hunts, tech classes and teen-only night club events. When there are more than 100 children on board, a HAL Talent Show is offered. The Culinary Arts Center has cooking classes for kids and teens.

Verdict

– Cruise Passenger 

“The cabins and beds were very comfortable. The spa rooms had small balconies with 2 chairs and a small table. The balconies were added onto the ship in a 2009 refit. The vista suite had a much larger balcony with the 2 chairs and a lounge chair. The vista suites had some extra storage and a jacuzzi. “-drneal

– Cruise Critic 

– Berlitz

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