The Great Alaska Adventure
MS Statendam 9.9.2012
MS Statendam 9.9.2012
Just The Facts:
Ship: Holland American Line: MS Statendam
Cruise & Tour dates: 7 September - 19 September, 2012
Captain: Frans K Consen
Cruise Director: Anthony Choice
Ports: Vancouver BC; Ketchikan, Alaska; Juneau, Alaska; Skagway, Alaska; Seward, Alaska; Denali, Alaska; Anchorage. Alaska.
This is my 2nd cruise on Holland America, my 2nd cruise to Alaska, and my 74th cruise overall. We are traveling with a group of 20 regular and new cruising friends.
|Capilano Suspension Bridge|
|ms Statendam at Canada Place, Vancouver Canada|
Day Two--Monday--at Sea
|Lido Deck - MS Statendam|
Day Three--Tuesday—Ketchikan, Alaska
Day Four--Wednesday—Juneau, Alaska
|Mendenhall Glacier - Juneau Alaska|
Day Five--Thursday—Skagway, Alaska
|Skagway Alaska - MS Statendam in background|
Day Six--Friday --at Sea
|Happy Hour in the Crows Nest|
Day Seven--Saturday--Seward, Alaska
|"Making her Momma Proud' @ Mixology Seminar|
Day Eight--Sunday--Seward to Denali
|Cabin Night Dinner Theater - Denali Alaska|
Day Nine--Monday--Denali, Alaska
|Mt. McKinley (Denali) from 75 miles away in Denali Park|
Day Ten--Tuesday--Denali to Anchorage
|Our rail car on the Alaska Railroad|
Day Eleven--Wednesday--Anchorage, Alaska
Rainy day in Anchorage. We slept as late as possible as we have a late flight. We completely repacked our bags to get below the 50lb. air weight limit, then we went down to the lobby about noon to visit with departing friends. We shopped for a while at the tourist locations then went over to Humpy’s Alehouse for a long casual late lunch. I had the Halibut Fish basket as I knew it would be the last proper Alaskan meal. I also had the bread pudding, it is served with a warm whisky sauce...both were very good. We then did some more shopping and returned to the hotel to relax and visit with the friends remaining before heading to the Ted Stevens Anchorage Int’l Airport. It is very common for people to book red eye flights from Anchorage, but we are fortunate to have a direct flight to DFW leaving at 8:30 pm. Due to weather and wind there were many flight cancellations, but we got away almost on time.
The MS Statendam is now considered a smaller cruise ship at 719 feet long and 55,819 gross tons. The ship never seemed crowded and was very clean and well maintained. There were more than enough activities to keep everyone busy if they wished. They had daily: Movies, Culinary Demonstrations, Trivia, Games, and various Seminars. Also Productions shows, Musical groups, and Dancing. The ship has a covered lido pool area that is ideal for Alaska cruising.
We have cabin 417 an interior cabin located very aft on the starboard side of lower promenade deck (6). The cabin has an exterior access to the outer deck just across from the cabin, great for viewing or a shortcut to forward area of ship as it circled the ship. The cabin has a lot of floor space if you split the beds into twins, larger than a Carnival standard interior cabin. It has the standard three sets of closets, key code safe, flat screen TV, hair dryer, and full couch. Our cabin steward did a good job maintaining the cabin. I would certainly recommend this cabin to the value cruiser.
The crew was for the most part very good. Of course the cocktail servers and bartenders in the Crows Nest became favorites and well as the mixology staff. Disappointed with dining room staff, not consistent at all. Anthony the CD seemed quite good. We enjoyed the Captain’s announcements in his unique staccato manner of delivery, very interesting. ;-)
My favorite food was the bread pudding, they usually had it somewhere every day. Also in a variety of styles: raison, rhubarb, sourdough, etc. The dinner entrees, when served, were all good and the buffet although not a big variety was also good. DW said the cookies were very good. Of course the first and last nights in the dining room were not a good experience.
Alaska Adventure Highlights
Two things were the highlight for me: The view of Mount McKinley (or Denali), the largest mountain in North America was tops. Although it wasn’t 100% clear, only 20% of visitors actually get to see it at all so we were lucky. I also very much enjoyed the Happy Hours in the Crow’s Nest that were wonderful. I later saw the bar manager (during the blackout) and asked him about our fun group at Happy Hour and he was very pleased with the volume of business and fun we added. They were nice to us and furnished hot horderves as a snack at each gathering, it really did make wonderful cocktail hours. I also enjoyed Cabin Night and our dinner at the Glacier Brewhouse very much.
What made the trip FUN was traveling with a fun group. Always rolling with the punches and making the best of every situation, the group was determined to have a great Alaska experience!
IT WAS AN ADVENTURE!
|Snoozemates in Alaska|