CruiseMates' Readers Cruise Reviews

Holland America Line Maasdam by Rob Holloway Eastern Canada May 20, 2006

Cabin Category: Balcony Cabin Number: 165 Cruise length 7 nights.

Our vacation was to spend a week with our daughter who works in Boston, then take the seven (7) night MS Maasdam cruise from Boston to Montreal and visit our other daughter on Montreal and her children.

We wanted to take a cruise with less people (1,266) instead of the 2,600 type ship. It worked out well as we celebrated a birthday in Boston then our grandson's in Montreal. We flew from Victoria BC (Vancouver Island) Canada to Ottawa then to Boston a week prior and stayed at Hotel 140 for $149 US a night. Hotel 140 is located just off Cobley Square and is an renovated YWCA. Very clean room , small but the price and location in heart of Boston at graduation time cannot be beat. Logan airport is busy and old but taxi was fine and rate was about $25 which includes the tunnel and AP fee. Taxi to the pier itself in the south end was about $15 including tip. Porters took our bags about 11:30am, gave then $5, swift checkin after we were assigned number 3 group, probably onboard by noon with rooms available by 1pm. They take you to Lido deck to wait and a buffet is available. One tender to Bar Harbour, pier stops each day (Halifax, Sydney, Charlottetown, Sea day to Saguenay Fjord , Quebec, Montreal).

All our tour tickets were pre-booked and paid and were in our cabin when we arrived. Holland America does a very good job in selections and tour operations. Our dining room service was excellent , table 64 (1st seating) but the table was set for 10 and only about 7 showed up which dropped to two couples and one single lady. Next time we will stay with the 6:15 seating or later as it is too early when you return from a tour to relax. Next time we will request a table for 6 instead, easier to know people. We did have a good time with our table mates. We used room service for breakfast most day and tipped $2 each day, those trays are heavy to carry from the dining room. Always on time and excellent food choices. We used the laundry service and it was returned same day even though we selected normal service, surprised us. Our room steward (ASEP) room 165 Balcony V deck was excellent.

The entertainment was a good mix, though they could have brought onboard more local talent. We are in our early sixties and were in the younger group but who cares, lots of energy though, at night the younger folks held court. The ship has been renovated and those beds were wonderful and comfortable.

Internet service is expensive at $0.75 a minute with a setup fee and plans to a lower rate. The speed was slow, not like a true ADSL/CABLE. The room and computers though were excellent What was missing, a mute point , was not knowing the order of colours departing the ship on the last day. We did arrive late about an hour but as we were one the last groups, off by 10-10:30am in Montreal.

Rob Holloway

Our cruises: Alaska August 2001 Infinity Celebrity Mexico November 2001 Sea Princess British Isles August 2005 Golden Princess Canada/New England May 2006 Maasdam Holland America

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