Ms Koningsdam – a ships tour

A first look at the latest luxury cruise ship from Holland America Line

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Ms Koningsdam – a ships tour

I was invited to Amsterdam to take a look at ms Koningsdam, the latest luxury cruise ship from Holland America Line. This is a new class of ship for the popular cruise brand – Pinnacle Class – and combines the best of what their traditional guests love with some new experiences.

Designed by hospitality designer Adam D. Tihany and ship architect Bjorn Storbraaten, the ms Koningsdam blends Holland America's rich seafaring heritage with innovative design. The theme throughout the ship is based on music, with light-filled spaces and curves inspired by musical instruments; the art in the stairwells and in the elevator lobbys is all musically themed and even the carpets have a subtle and tasteful musical design. The accommodation decks are named after composers - Beethoven, Gershwin, Mozart, and Schubert.

Let’s start with some statistics:

  • Gross Tonnage 99,500 grt
  • Length 975 feet
  • Beam 114.8 feet
  • Ships Registry The Netherlands
  • Passengers 2,650
  • Crew 1,036
  • Staterooms 1,331
  • Dedicated 20 May 2016
  • Godmother Her Majesty Queen Maxima of the Netherlands

Let me take you round the ship in a photo tour - more photos can be viewed here.

Dining Venues on ms Koningsdam

Guests will have the opportunity to enjoy several dining options.

The Dining Room spans two decks and has floor to ceiling windows, and features a copper-covered wine tower, and is decorated in tones of red and gold, with sweeping majestic curved pillars adding a dramatic element to the space.

Sel de Mer is a new seafood brasserie offering a new twist on French classic.

The Grand Dutch Café is inspired by blue and white Delftware and you can enjoy Dutch treats such as Heineken beer, waffles and other snacks.

The Culinary Arts Centre is a kitchen by day, offering cooking classes, and a farm-to-table restaurant at night.

Gelato offers yummy frozen desserts, from scoops of ice-cream to other chilled treats.

The New York Deli and Pizza, situated by the pool area, provides authentic deli-style sandwiches and personal pan pizzas, as well as fresh salads for the more health-conscious.

Lido Market is decorated in greens and oranges, and has themed food stations, such as

  • Breadboard, for freshly baked breads and pastries
  • Wild Harvest, offering a selection of salads
  • Homestead, serving up comfort classics
  • Distant Lands, featuring flavours from around the world
  • Sweet Spot, for ice cream creations and desserts
  • Market Central, continental breakfast or light meals to grab on the go
  • Roasting Pan, hand-carved meats, fish and other heartier entrees
  • Perk, freshly brewed coffee, hot and iced tea, and chilled juices
  • Quench, premium beer, wine, and sodas

Pinnacle Grill - This award-winning guest favourite dining venue features choice cuts of beef and other steakhouse fare, complemented by boutique wines from the Pacific Northwest.

Tamarind – Tamarind offers fusion food from Southeast Asia, China and Japan, including a newly added sushi bar. Recently noted by Condé Nast Traveler for its “cuisine that rivals the top restaurants on land,” Tamarind is located on the Panorama deck, providing stunning views.

Canalettos is the onboard Italian restaurant offering a variety of authentic dishes to enjoy.

BLEND – This is a new venue to HAL ships and debuts onboard ms Koningsdam. Here guests will be able to blend their own wine and enjoy it at dinner or in the privacy of their stateroom. BLEND is a collaboration with Chateau Ste. Michelle, Washington State’s oldest and most acclaimed winery, and is the only purpose built wine-blending venue at sea. Top tip – don’t leave this to the last night of the cruise as you cannot take the bottles off the ship and your blended wine needs to be consumed onboard! Unless you have a group of friends to help you finish it! I thought this was a really innovative venue and would love to try it.

More photos can be found here- ms Koningsdam food, wine and dining venues

Open Decks and Pool areas

More photos of the open decks, public rooms, The Retreat, pool areas, kids clubs and more on ms Koningsdam

Ms Koningsdam Staterooms

Every stateroom on board ms Koningsdam has Holland America Lines' signature Mariner's Dream™ bed, featuring finely woven cotton linens and a plush Euro-Top mattress. All staterooms are large and spacious, and ms Koningsdam features the cruise line's first purpose-built staterooms for families, as well as single staterooms. I was delighted to see they had included bedside USB ports for charging phones and other gadgets.

There are 43 Neptune Suites on board ms Koningsdam. Guests who travel in these lovely suites can enjoy free laundry and dry cleaning, premium towels and slippers, corsages and boutonnieres for the first formal night, hors d'oeuvres served before dinner each evening, a cocktail party with ship officers, priority boarding for tender ports of call, priority dining and seating requests and much more. Pictured is Neptune Suite 7088, on Schubert Deck.

Each Neptune Suite features two lower beds that are convertible to a king-size bed, bathroom with dual-sink vanity, a full-size whirlpool bath & shower & additional shower stall, large sitting area, private verandah, floor-to-ceiling windows and measure approximately 465–855 sq. ft. including verandah.

The Neptune Suites guests have access to the Neptune Lounge, a private place to relax, socialise, grab a snack or use the on-hand Concierge to book spa appointments, shore excursions and dining reservations.

Other grades of accommodation include 266 interior staterooms, 12 single oceanview staterooms, 32 family staterooms, 94 oceanview, 710 verandah, 104 Vista Suites, 14 Signature Suites and just the one Pinnacle Suite. The ship also has 27 wheelchair accessible staterooms.

View more photos of ms Koningsdam suites and staterooms

Club HAL – Kids Clubs on board

Ms Koningsdam offers great facilities for kids of all ages and arrange activities for guests age 3 to 17, all supervised by the qualified youth staff, split into three age groups. Kids age 3 to 7, Tweens from 8 to 12 and Teens age 13 to 17.

Entertainment on ms Koningsdam

Entertainment is a big feature on this new class of ship, with Deck 2 – Plaza Deck – devoted to music.

The Queens Lounge is a double height room with a mezzanine level overlooking a dance floor and a stage, where BB Kings Blues Club is situated. We were treated to a couple of numbers expertly performed by the resident blues band. I could see this being a favourite place to come for a few drinks after dinner!

Further along Plaza Deck is the heart of the Music Walk and two very different venues; Billboard Onboard and the Lincoln Arts Centre. I really enjoyed the classical music recital performed enthusiastically by musicians of the Lincoln Centre in New York - Holland America Line has an exclusive partnership with them.

At Billboard Onboard I grabbed a seat next to the two back-to-back grand pianos and enjoyed some excellent singing and playing from the two talented musicians. We all sang along to Hey Jude! In the evening, the venue also hosts a guitarist and DJ, who will take turns performing shows centred around facts and figures of the music industry as chronicled by Billboard. Between the nightly performances, guests can sing and play along with trivia questions presented on screens throughout the room.

Towards the front of the ship, there is World Stage, an innovative theatre featuring a 270-degree LED screen. Combined with seating in-the-round and projected images, this theatre will be used to offer five new productions performed by a cast sourced from around the world. We were treated to a small sample of one of the shows and I have to say I was very impressed. There was singing, dancing, acrobatics, incredible lighting, awesome costumes and a thumping soundtrack that left you exhilarated. Being in-the-round everyone had a great view and felt part of the spectacle. I loved this venue and can’t wait to take a cruise to see the full production.

View more photos of ms Koningsdam entertainment

Ms Koningsdam summary

Even though I was only on for a few hours, I could tell that this is a ship that I would really enjoy! The food in the Dining Room was delicious, the service attentive, the entertainment we saw was outstanding & the ships facilities and innovation were great. What impressed me was the space – the elevator lobbies were very spacious, the public rooms were large and the pool deck was arranged with comfy loungers with tables for drinks (so often forgotten on the larger ships) and not over-crowded. The ships décor is lighter in tone than many of the other ships in the fleet and has a bright and airy feel about it with, whilst maintaining quality and class.

I would recommend this to all age groups; families, couples and singles, as well as those looking for a sophisticated cruise experience with lots of quality entertainment and dining options.

For further photo albums of the ship please see here – ms Koningsdam photo tour

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