Boarding the ship at Venice shipyard where the ms Nieuw Amsterdam was built and sailing to the docks in Venice was an incredible experience. The captain took the ship out into open waters and then before returning to the docks in Venice, sailed the ship down the Grand Canal, right past St. Marks square…it was truly a magical moment to be a part of.
The ms Nieuw Amsterdam itself is an exact replica of the Eurodam only with much softer tones of beiges and greens. The ship had an excellent feel to it, both warm and bright. Although it is by far the biggest class ship in the Holland America Line Fleet it definitely retains that Holland America Line feeling everyone knows and loves. The artwork on the ship is remarkable – there is a 20-foot long painting of the New York City skyline as you enter the Explorer’s Lounge that is absolutely
stunning. The upside down New York City skyline that spins around hanging from the ceiling in the atrium is truly something to see as well. And of course the staff, well what can you say about the staff of a Holland America Line ship- other than they were of course the best I’ve ever seen!
The following day was the actual christening ceremony with Princess Maxima of the Netherlands attending and being named the godmother of the ship. The event was truly amazing. It began with a water parade of fifteen boats; each boat flew a flag with the name of each ship in the Holland America Line fleet and aboard was the captain from that ship. Upon arriving at the docks each captain left their boat and lined up in front of the ms Nieuw Amsterdam with their flags behind them waiting for the arrival of Princess Maxima. The Princess arrived and was greeted
by each captain and Holland America Line President, Stein Kruse.
Next we had a luncheon held in the Manhattan Dining Room followed by the actual christening event in The Showroom. Stein Kruse spoke and introduced the captains of all fifteen Holland America Line ships – they rose out from the floor and lined up all together on stage. It was truly an incredible moment to see that kind of representation from each ship. Then it was time of course for godmother Princess Maxima to officially name the ship, which she did so gracefully and eloquently.
Lastly, Stein Kruse announced a new and exciting feature – there would be a permanent board placed onboard the ms Nieuw Amsterdam and everyone sailing on the inaugural event will sign the board so that they would permanently be a part of the ships history and she begins her journeys at sea. Princess Maxima signed the board to kick off the official signing event and the following day the board was placed out on the Lido deck for everyone to sign. It is a wonderful feeling to be a part of the ships history.
This was truly a memorable event and an incredible ship. Cruise Specialists is proud to be able to now offer her to our many valued clients as she sails around the world. For more information on ms Nieuw Amsterdam sailings visit our Holland America Line Page.