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Amsterdam - Explorer's Lounge, Explorations Café, La Fontaine Dining Room

Holland America's signature oversized lampshades welcome us to the exquisite Explorer's Lounge. Even if you don't like the rather old-fashioned look of this lounge with its oversized murals and dark colors, you will have to admit that the designers have again managed to create a cozy, home-like atmosphere.

La Fontaine Dining Room grand staircase

The Explorer's Lounge serves as a quiet lounge and has a perennial Sunday morning feeling with its soothing color scheme and oversized chairs lining a wall of floor-to-ceiling windows. Adjacent to the Explorer's Lounge is the Explorations Café, Holland America's new concept in which library, reading room Internet Café and coffee corner are joined in perfect harmony.  

During our port visit, the Exploration Café was a hub of activity and passengers were seen sipping coffee while surfing the net, taking it easy on one of the comfy relax chairs or browsing through Amsterdam's quite substantial choice of books. It is quite clear that the Exploration Café concept, which was devised in cooperation with the New York Times, is a winner!

La Fontaine Dining Room

Two decks high, the La Fontaine Dining Room is the ship's window-walled main eatery. Meals are served in two sittings here at assigned tables for two to eight. With its gleaming marble floors and gigantic bouquets of fresh flowers, the double entrances to the La Fontaine Dining Room on both decks are especially noteworthy.  

The unorthodox choice of furniture, colors and materials have resulted in a warm, yet glamorous dining room. With its beautiful backlit glass ceiling, the grand staircases and palm trees, the La Fontaine Dining Room was clearly inspired inspired by the days of the grand ocean liners and is a another tribute to the history of Holland America Line. Space between tables is quite generous, with the most coveted tables for two lining the railing on the upper level, overlooking the Captain's Table below.

Art Gallery looking into the Explorer's Lounge

Explorer's Lounge
Explorer's Lounge
Entrance to the La Fontaine Dining Room
La Fontaine Dining Room
La Fontaine Dining Room - coveted aft tables overlooking the wake of the ship
La Fontaine Dining Room

Stunning La Fontaine Dining Room

Explorer's Lounge

Exploration's Café
Exploration's Café
Exploration's Café Library
Card Room
La Fontaine Dining Room
La Fontaine Dining Room
La Fontaine Dining Room

 

Photos and text: © 2006 Bart de Boer - www.ShipParade.com

First published on August 20, 2006

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