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The Holland America Cruise Line (formerly known as the Dutch America Steamship Company founded in 1873) has operated for over 136 years. Over this period of time the shipboard experience has evolved from trans-Atlantic steamer to a global cruise company. It’s no wonder today Holland America is the essence of modern sophistication. Its competitors are Celebrity Cruises and Princess Cruises. The Holland America experience, however, is more refined as evidence by outstanding cuisine.
The leading competitors to Holland America Line are Celebrity Cruises and Princess Cruises. The Holland America experience, however, is superior as shown by a few factors:
Both the main dining room(s) and the alternative dining restaurants offer an extensive variety of selections that are often influenced by the cuisine of the city, or country, where the ship is sailing. The alternative dining options onboard Holland America Line are notorious. Canaletto features Italian cuisine, Tamarind offers an Asian Fusion dining experience, while the Pinnacle Grill offers a range of dining options highlighted with Holland America’s Sterling Beef. Additionally, Holland America now features Le Cirque at Pinnacle Grill for an extraordinary dining experience on just one night during each cruise.
The cabin size is plentiful and the bedding package is reminiscent of first-class bedding found at Ritz-Carlton and Four Seasons hotels. You will be hard-pressed not to have a good night sleep on a Holland America Line cruise.
The ships are a thoughtful blend of contemporary décor with wonderful glass objects d’ art found alongside antiques from the history of Holland America Line and from the far-reaching corners of the globe.
While the cruises will frequent major ports of call, Holland America often finds the off-the-beaten-path ports frequented mostly by small ship cruise lines. Holland America positions its ships throughout the year to the best cruising markets in a given season – Europe (England, Northern Europe, Greek Islands and the Mediterranean) and Alaska in the summer, Caribbean, Mexico and South America in the winter. And, Holland America features exotic cruises to Hawaii, Tahiti, Australia, the Middle East (Dubai) and Asia (Vietnam, India, Bali, Singapore, Hong Kong, etc.). Holland America even features a world cruise each year.
Seasonally, Holland America competes with several of the mass market cruise lines in the Caribbean and the Mexican Riviera. There is an obvious difference in the passenger profile of Holland America vs mass market cruise lines. The easiest way to put it is that I have never heard that Holland America has ever held a “hairiest chest contest” at the pool.
Of particular note with Holland America Line is the Culinary Arts Center which features cooking demonstrations. Also, the Collections of Holland America Line offer specially chosen shore tours that enhance guests’ appreciation and understanding of the port of call.
Holland America Line continues to improve the on-board experience and has committed $525-million in their Signature of Excellence program. The program is adding new facilities and public spaces, added services and amenities of each ship. Holland America has been recognized for this effort in receiving the prestigious Five Star Diamond Award from The American Academy of Hospitality Sciences.
Have you been on a cruise? If so, which one is your favourite?