On October 15, 1872, a group of sixty immigrants boarded a HAL-Holland America ship and set sail for NYC New York. This was HAL's very first voyage on the steamship SS Rotterdam (aka "MS Rotterdam I"/1872-built by Henderson, Coulborn & Company).
Exactly 150 years later, the 2021-built ms Rotterdam VII set sail from Rotterdam (Netherlands) recreating HAL's very first cruise. Call ports include Le Havre/Paris (France) and Plymouth (England UK) prior to the Transatlantic crossing (RepositionCruises.com) and arriving in NYC.
Gus Antorcha (HAL's current President) said the day was historic for the company/brand as they departed 150 years to the day Holland America’s first ship began her journey to New York City.
“In that time, we’ve carried immigrants and cruising vacationers, soldiers and refugees and earned a reputation for extraordinary care and welcoming all those guests as if into our own homes. As we sail into our next 150 years, that environment of service will be our hallmark as we create exceptional experiences for guests around the world.”
The company invited fans to come to Cruise Port Rotterdam and Wilhelminapier (in the city's Kop van Zuid neighborhood) for a festive shoreside sail away party, recreating a departure from centuries past when liners were sent off with fanfare.
Fireboats spraying water and a flotilla from the local yacht club came to see Rotterdam off.