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New ship No. 2 — Holland America Koningsdam

Second in a series of new ships for 2016

Ship-Konigsdam

It’s been six years between new ships for Holland America, so imagine the anticipation leading up to the launch of the Koningsdam. It will be the first ship in the Pinnacle Class (presumably there are more to follow) and the biggest ship in the Holland America fleet, which will shrink by a ship when the Koningsdam arrives, having despatched the Ryndam and Statendam to another member of the Carnival Corporation family, P&O Australia.

Launch date: April 8

Capacity: 2,650

Sister ships: None yet

Maiden voyage: Rome return (7 days)

Home port: Fort Lauderdale

Ships then in Holland America fleet: 14

Interesting: Since the Nieuw Amsterdam was the last new ship in 2010, it’s safe to assume this will be unlike any of the 13 siblings, starting with the fact it carries 500 more passengers, is one deck (12) higher and weighs 13,000 tons more than Holland America’s last newbie. Besides a more contemporary look and feel, there’s also more of an attempt for passenger participation, with BLEND a wine-making program designed in conjunction with the well-known Chateau Ste. Michelle, and the Culinary Arts Center for hands-on creations at individual cooking stations during classes conducted by celebrity chefs. Holland America has also joined the club in dining with “As You Wish” choice of seating and time.

In the news…

• Norwegian’s new slogan to attract cruiser customers — “Feel Free!”
• Carnival to charge as much as $6 per plate fleet-wide for new room-service items
• Star Cruises positioning ship in near Hong Kong, in Guangzhou, China

Today at portsandbows.com: All the latest cruise news


Carnival Inspiration
4 nights
February 15, 2016
Los Angeles (return): Catalina Island, Ensenada
Inside: $179
Cost per day: $44
www.carnival.com

Holland America Crowns 'King' Of Ships

Kudos to Holland America for moving into the 21st century…make that the 20th century. For the first time since 1873, a Holland America ship is getting an original name.

It’s the ms Koningsdam.

The ship will arrive in 2016 and be the biggest in Holland America’s aging fleet. Of the 15 ships currently still part of the fleet, four are at least 20 years old and all but three are at least 10 years old. The last new ship will be age six by the time the Koningsdam arrives. ms KoningsdamThe comparable in people years would be about age 33…so imagine being 33 and getting a new sister!

Koningsdam?

The name means “king” in Dutch. The timing is ideal because it pays tribute to King Willem-Alexander, who last year became the first king of the Netherlands in more than 100 years. The last male Dutch male baby was Prince Alexander, who was born in 1851…and that’s today’s history lesson.

Clearly, Holland America was waiting for another king to come up with another original name for a ship. Hmm, wonder if this ship will have a “godfather” when its name becomes official?

The Koningsdam will carry 2,650 passengers. The average Holland America ship carries 1,650 and the Nieuw Amsterdam — the last new ship in 2010 — has a capacity of 2,106. By today’s standards, all are far from being classified as “mega ships.” In advance of the Koningdam’s arrival, two other Holland America ships — the Ryndam and the Statendam — will be departing (in 2015) for Australia to sail under the P&O flag.

The familiar three-letter suffix at the end of all Holland America ships remains intact. One thing nobody’s been able to say about this cruise line for a long time is that it’s adding another “dam” ship.

Today at portsandbows.com: The latest in cruise news

Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas
7 nights
November 30, 2014
Port Canaveral (return): Coco Cay, St. Thomas, St. Maarten
Inside: $499
Cost per day: $71
www.royalcaribbean.com

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