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amsterdam cruise ship photos
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Amsterdam Facts & Figures
Owner/Operator:Holland America Line
Year built:2000
Builder:Fincantieri, Italy
Former names:-
Gross Tonnage:62,735
Length:237.8 m (780.8 ft)
Beam:32.2 m (105.6 ft)
Passengers (normal):1,380
Passengers (maximum):1,738
Crew:642
Service speed:21.0 kn
Sister Ships:Rotterdam
Amsterdam Photo Gallery
Amsterdam Holland America Line cruise ship photos Amsterdam Holland America Line cruise ship photos Amsterdam Holland America Line cruise ship photos Amsterdam Holland America Line cruise ship photos Amsterdam Holland America Line cruise ship photos
Amsterdam Holland America Line cruise ship photos amsterdam holland america line cruise ship photos amsterdam holland america line cruise ship photos amsterdam holland america line cruise ship photos
Welcome Home Amsterdam

Text & Photos © 2006 Bart de Boer - please note Amsterdam was refurbished after this article was written

In May of 2006, the city of Amsterdam welcomed its floating namesake as Holland America's Amsterdam docked at the downtown Passenger Terminal for a two-day visit. On the last leg of a transatlantic positioning voyage that took her from New York to Copenhagen, Amsterdam attracted many onlookers during her stay in the city she was named after.

We start our exploration at the top. Amsterdam has ten passenger decks, crowned by Sky Deck that sits all the way forward over the bridge and rewards sunbathers with beautiful sea views over the bow through floor-to-ceiling windows. One deck down and we come to Sports Deck. Focal point here is the Crow's Nest, Holland America's trademark observation lounge. A beautiful, classic mural with gilded figures adorns the forward stair tower that leads up to the Sports Deck. The port side entrance to the Crow's Nest is equally impressive, reminding one of the old Holland America ocean liners. Inside the Crow's Nest, you quickly notice the different areas that make up this spacious observation room.
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Continuing on Sports Deck, we pass by the sliding glass roof that covers the Lido Pool below. Next to the twin funnels are tennis and basketball courts. And all the way aft is "The Loft", Holland America's attempt to lure youngsters and to shake off the line's old-world image. With an Internet Room, Disco, plunge pool and café with hammocks, who wouldn't want to be a kid again?
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Spa", "Sun", "Swim" are the S- words that sum up all that Amsterdam's Lido Deck has to offer. With two swimming pools, an extensive Gym and Spa, bars and a large casual restaurant, you may never want to leave this deck on a relaxing day at sea. Start your day in the Ocean Spa for a spin in the Gym or perhaps a relaxing massage with an ocean view.

Amidships is the spacious and bright Lido Deck that can be covered by an enormous sliding glass roof, an essential feature in the chilly waters of Scandinavia or Alaska. The Amsterdam's design team (Dutch VFD Design) should be commended for making the Lido an utterly delightful place to spend many hours, come rain or shine. So, what is there to do at the Lido except seeing the sliding roof open ... and close? Well, there is the casual Terrace Grill section, offering burgers and fries at lunchtime. Ample padded lounge chairs are set up around the average sized swimming pool, wading pool and twin whirlpools. Then there is the giant chess set, but best is the fabulous Pool Bar, designed like a beachfront café with umbrellas and rattan chairs overlooking the main pool.
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From the Lido Pool, sets of automatic doors lead to the impressive Lido Restaurant. Featuring very original chairs and tables, this casual eatery open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and offers panoramic sea views through walls of glass. The self-service counters are all neatly grouped together in the center line of the room, with drink stations dotted around for thirsty souls. The atmosphere of the Lido Restaurant is just right, cleverly avoiding the canteen feeling that is so apparent on many large cruise ships. There is even an alfresco dining area all the way aft on the open deck. Here, you'll find Amsterdam's other swimming pool, lots of lounge chairs and a cozy Pool Bar. And a sea breeze!
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With two full-length decks of public rooms and restaurants, you will always find "your" corner on Amsterdam. The Dutch design team have managed to come up with an ingenious layout that is like a puzzle, with little nooks everywhere. Using dark colors, offset by bright reds and pinks and a selection of eclectic artifacts, the result is nothing short of stunning.

The only public room on board Amsterdam that has not been designed by VFD Interiors is the Queen's Lounge, a double-deck showroom. Carnival Corporation's "in-house designer" Joe Farcus has designed the Queen's Lounge with a warm, distinct look that will appeal to most.
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Walking aft from the Queen's Lounge, we stumble across the huge Astrolabe, a grotesque astronomical centerpiece dominating the three-deck Atrium. Surrounding the Atrium on this deck is the Atrium Terrace and the rather uninspiring Ocean Bar. Further aft you walk straight into the Casino, which shares its space on the deck plan with the Shopping Arcade and on oddly place Sports Bar. Because of the lack of windows in this area, it all looks a bit garish and dark. Perhaps the room will work better at night, when the casino action starts and the shops open.
Our favorite bar on Amsterdam must be the Amstel Bar and the adjacent Rembrandt Lounge. Designed brilliantly in a semi-circular form, this room approaches the style and grace of the old Nieuw Amsterdam and Rotterdam as they crossed the Atlantic in the sixties. With its boldly colored dance floor, its fine artwork and cozy seating alcoves, this is the place to be!
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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.

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!
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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.
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Apart from the La Fontaine Dining Room, Terrace Grill and Lido Café, Amsterdam has some more culinary surprises in store. Housed in a cavernous windowless amidships section of Promenade Deck is Holland America's much-applauded Pinnacle Grill, offering the best in premium steaks and seafood.

By adding an interior gallery, the design team have cleverly avoided the feeling of being closed in. Still, it is a pity that the best food on board is served in a room without sea views. Dining at the Pinnacle Grill is available to all guests on a reservations-only basis. and costs approximately US$ 20 per person. Try it at least once during your cruise - you won't be disappointed! And should you wish to know how all these exquisite dishes are prepared, hop across the corridor to the Wajang Theater. At first glance, this is a regular seagoing cinema. But once the curtains open a complete professional kitchen is revealed; the stage for Holland America's Culinary Arts Theater.
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Looking a bit misplaced in between the antique artifacts and dark colors is the modern, trendy Wine Bar, the place to go for that before-dinner drink or to participate in any of the wine tasting sessions. And if all this wine makes you forget all about time, just take a look at that gigantic Astrolabe taking up all available space in the Atrium.
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For a breathe of fresh air, Lower Promenade Deck offers a wrap-around teak walkway that comes complete with steamer chairs and glorious sea views. It is here that we say goodbye to Amsterdam, a "modern classic" that is small enough to feel cozy, but large enough to have all the amenities you would expect on the flagship of the Holland America fleet.
Amsterdam Interior Photos (2006)
Crow's Nest - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer Crow's Nest - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer
Lido Pool - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer Lido Restaurant - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer

Lido Pool - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer
La Fontaine Dining Room - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer Explorer's Lounge - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer

Explorer's Lounge - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer
Entrance to Queen's Lounge - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer Queen's Lounge - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer

Queen's Lounge - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer
Atrium - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer Crow's Nest - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer

Rembrandt Lounge - Photo © 2006 Bart de Boer
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