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Amy

Age: 53

Occupation:Hairstylist

Number of Cruises: 8

Cruise Line: Holland America

Ship: Oosterdam

Sailing Date: 2011-08-16

Itinerary: Mexican Riviera

There were long lines checking in at the Port of San Diego, and no one to help with bags until we got to the front of the line. This cruise was a short one week R&R for us following my husbands surgery in January, so not having anyone from the cruise line to help us was difficult.

Once checked in however we were escorted to a special boarding area set aside for passengers with Suite reservations. We were even taken on board before other passengers and I have to admit was a first for us and a very pleasant experience. We had a Champagne bottle on ice waiting for us in our cabin, and always had use of the concierge right across the hall from us.

The over all experience kept fluctuating from being the best cabin we ever had to being dissappointed in Holland American ships. I thought it was dark and closed in, compared to other ships with lots of windows, and open spaces that allowed for a lot of natural light.

The food was more exceptional than on other lines, especially when we opted to dine on the formal night at the optional dining room, where we paid a cover which was worth it. The best food and service we'd ever had comparing it to other cruise lines.

I was not so enthusiastic about the morning and lunch buffets. We found ourselves walking around in circles trying to decide what was being served where.

The cabin which was a Verandah Suite was the largest we'd ever had and this was our eigth cruise. It was wonderful and looked just like the pictures on line. Except the furniture was really old and our two chairs were peeling and so dirty, that I would not sit on them. My opinion is that this ship is way overdue for a refurbishment. One day I had to ask our cabin attendant to clean the vents over our bed, because we were both coughing from the dust.

As we walked down the halls , I noticed the vacumm being used on the carpets was a shop vac. Not very ergonomic. Dust comes out of the back and we could smell it.

I loved the free computer photo shop classes. Holland America definitely offers different activities, like cooking and sewing classes. If you are a Martha Stewart, this is for you!

We did not participate in any port excusions. We thouroughly enjoyed Cabo. It is a glissening jewel in the sun ! It had been at least 7 years since we had been there, and it has changed so much for the better. It truly represents the Mexican Rivera.

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