Aegean Majesty

Former name: MS Veendam (Holland America Line)

Aegean Majesty current position

Aegean Majesty current location is at East Mediterranean (coordinates 37.64510 N / 21.32459 E) cruising en route to KATAKOLON. The AIS position was reported 56 minutes ago.

Current Position

Specifications of Aegean Majesty

Year built1996  /  Age: 24
Flag state Netherlands
BuilderFincantieri (Marghera, Italy)
ClassStatendam
Building costUSD 150 million
OwnerMediterranean Dream Inc
OperatorSeajets Cruise Line (Seajets Ferries Greece)
Speed21 kn / 39 kph / 24 mph
Length (LOA)219 m / 719 ft
Beam (width)30 m / 98 ft
Gross Tonnage57092 gt
Passengers1350 - 1620
Crew588
Passengers-to-space ratio35
Decks13
Cabins675
Decks with cabins5
Last Refurbishment2016-2021
Sister-shipsMS Maasdam (Aegean Myth), MS Ryndam (CMV Ida Pfeiffer), MS Statendam (CMV Vasco da Gama)
Former namesMS Veendam (Holland America Line)
Christened byMary Frances Debbie Reynolds (for Holland America Line)

Aegean Majesty Review

Review of Aegean Majesty

The 1996-built Aegean Majesty cruise ship (fka "MS Veendam") is the 4th and last Statendam (S-class) ship of Holland America, together with MS Statendam (CMV Vasco de Gama), MS Ryndam (CMV Ida Pfeiffer) and MS Maasdam.

IMPORTANT: in July 2020, Carnival Corporation (via Holland America Line) sold 4 liners. MS Amsterdam and MS Rotterdam were sold to Fred Olsen Cruise Lines (to be renamed "MS Bolette" and "MS Borealis"). MS Maasdam and MS Veendam were sold to an undisclosed buyer. In late-August was revealed the new shipowner's name - Seajets Ferries (Greece). The Greek ferry company operates the fastest ferries in the Cyclades Islands and starts a cruise shipping division with all 3 liners - Aegean Myth (HAL Maasdam), Aegean Majesty (HAL Veendam) and Oceana (P&O UK). For the cruise vessels was contracted Optimum ShipManagement Services SA (Piraeus-based company) that also manages the Celestyal Cruises fleet.

All scheduled for the 4 ships cruises were cancelled or assumed by other HAL ships.

  • A total of 46x Holland America Veendam ship cruises were cancelled (November 3, 2020, through October 2, 2021), including 7-14-21-day Western Caribbean and 7-14-21-day Southern Caribbean roundtrips from Tampa Florida (through March 28, 2021), 28-day repositioning Mediterranean to Baltic (Civitavecchia-Rome to Amsterdam), Northern European roundtrips from Amsterdam (14-23-28-37-day Baltic, British Isles, Iceland and Norway Fjords, 2021 June 5 through August 23), 12-26-day repositioning Baltic to Mediterranean (Amsterdam to Civitavecchia), 14-28-day Holy Land roundtrip from Civitavecchia (Italy-Greece-Turkey-Israel-Malta).

Following the vessel's acquisition, Seajets Aegean Majesty was initially docked/moored at Katakolon (Olympia, Greece).

History - construction and ownership

Holland America Line (HAL) is a Seattle-based cruise company owned by Carnival Corporation (shipowner). Between 1873-1989, HAL was a Dutch cargo and passenger shipping company operating regular Transatlantic crossings between Holland and the Americas. HAL was founded in 1873 as "Dutch-American Steamship Company" headquartered in Rotterdam Netherlands. In 1989, HAL was acquired by Carnival Corporation for around EUR 530 million. Among the company's assets are the Westmark hotel chain (Alaska-Yukon), Worldwide Shore Services (warehouses-logistics) and Half Moon Cay (Caribbean private island).

Holland America MS Veendam cruise ship

The 57,092-ton, 1,266-passenger cruise ship ms Veendam still keeps her traditional strengths. Veendam's signature has been her personal ambiance and multitude of retreats, where cruisers might enjoy a quiet moment or a book. Passengers might still carve out a private space - whether in one of the blissfully convenient window-facing lounge chairs in the Explorations Cafe, a corner of the Crow's Nest or Explorer's Lounge, a padded deck chair on the Deck 6 walk or one of the many slices of outer decks stepped up the bow of the cruise liner. The only time that passengers really feel the crowds, is when they are queuing up for dinner in the Rotterdam Dining Room or the Lido Restaurant, the same as other cruise ships.

Cruise itinerary program

MS Veendam itinerary program is based on Canada cruises from Quebec and Boston MA in the summer, Mexican Riviera cruises and Panama Canal transit on repositioning.

(December 22, 2017, through April 2018), MS Veendam cruises to Cuba were roundtrips from Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale Florida). HAL's 7-, 11-and 12-days long Cuban itineraries also visited other Caribbean ports of call. Prices started from USD 900 per person (double occupancy inside cabin rates). Bookings opened on May 26, 2017.

In the period November 2020 - April 2021, the liner is homeported in Tampa Bay (Florida). The program has scheduled a total of 18 Caribbean cruises plus 2 Transatlantic crossings.

Cabins

MS Veendam has a total number of 675 cabins (of which 193 Suites, no Balcony, 138 Inside, 16 Spa rooms) in 31 grades. Most ms Veendam staterooms are 175-255-sq.foot oceanview rooms (345). Almost 30% of ship's accommodations have private balcony views. 18 are the wheelchair-accessible rooms. The largest aboard ms Veendam is the Pinnacle Suite (935 ft2). There are also Lanai cabins (38, category CA, on deck 3), Spa cabins (3 - Interior, IQ category), Spa suites (12, BQ).

Implemented fleetwide in 2019, "Club Orange" program provides exclusive amenities to Suite passengers booked in categories Neptune and Pinnacle. Bonus perks by this program include:

  • priority services (check-in, disembarkation, tendering, dining reservations)
  • 24-hour concierge service (assistance, information, reservations)
  • exclusive dining venue (serving complimentary Pinnacle Grill breakfast and Dining Room dinner, plus exclusive dishes)
  • dedicated Concierge Desk (Guest Services and Tours)
  • room service (a la carte breakfast menu with complimentary gourmet dishes - including smoked salmon, steak and eggs)
  • sparkling wine (embarkation day), Club Orange tote bag, premium bathrobes (cabin use, available for monogramming and purchasing).
  • Club Orange Restaurant is part of the Main Dining Room (designed as separate VIP dining section).

Shipboard dining options - Food and Drinks

Veendam's restaurants include the Rotterdam Dining Room, the Lido buffet, and the intimate Pinnacle Grill. There is also a casual poolside option for hot dogs and burgers, a coffee bar, and complimentary room service round-the-clock (from hot breakfast choices to dinner selections). The Lido buffet is efficient and has great sea views through its floor-to-ceiling windows. The buffet serves continental breakfast from 6:30 a.m., full breakfast (7-11 a.m.); lunch (11 a.m.-2 p.m.); and dinner (6-7:30 p.m.) Hours are adjusted during embarkation/debarkation and on port days. There are extended hours for ice cream, sandwiches or late-night offerings. Tea and coffee are available at the Lido at all times. The lines are manageable, even at peak times, with lots of available tables.

Follows the complete list of ms Veendam restaurants and food bars.

  • Pinnacle Grill (62-seat reservations-only seafood/steakhouse restaurant with fine wines selection; free for passengers under 12 yo). The venue transforms into “An Evening at le Cirque” once per cruise via a partnership with NYC “Le Cirque” French restaurant.
  • Rotterdam Restaurant (696-seat, aft Dining Room; features open seating Breakfast and Lunch, two Dinner options – 2 fixed seatings or “Any Time” dining between 5:15 p.m. - 9 p.m.
  • Terrace Grill (fast food pool bar; complimentary)
  • Lido Restaurant (372-seat complimentary buffet restaurant; offers self-service Breakfast 6:00 a.m. -11 a.m., Lunch 11:30 p.m. - 2 p.m., Afternoon Tea, and Dinner 5:30 p.m. - 8 p.m.)
  • Canaletto Restaurant (Lido Restaurant annex; operates as an Italian restaurant for Dinner, reservations required)
  • Slice (poolside Pizzeria).

Shipboard entertainment options - Fun and Sport

The vessel's $2 million art collection retains the overall feeling of stylish and traditional with superb antique Delft, marble busts, armor and paintings of old Holland America vessels on display. Even nightlife - one of Holland America's weak points - has been enhanced by the refurbishment; the open plan of Deck 8 creates a superior vibe in the evenings when the energy of the casino spills over into the bar places, and shoppers in the stores get lured across the walkway to the piano bar when they hear a favorite tune. By day there are trivia games, Bridge, Bingo, Sudoku, movies, cooking demos and mixology classes. Poolside bands play various music on sail-aways and sea days. The New York Times-sponsored Explorations Cafe is ship's active hub throughout the day and evening. It holds more than 2,000 books plus a host of periodicals and DVD library. There are write-on/wipe-off crossword puzzle tables, touch-screen interactive maps and a cubby of puzzles and games. An adjacent card room and computer/Internet stations are also available. Other amenities include: complimentary 24-Hour Room-Service, Supervised Kids Program ("Club Hal"), cruise ship weddings, Internet/WiFi Access, Laundry/Self-Serve Laundromats.

Holland America MS Veendam cruise ship

Follows the complete list of ms Veendam lounges, clubs and other entertainment venues for kids, teens and adults.

  • Atrium (3-deck high midship open-floor area with live performances)
  • Promenade Deck, Walking Track (jogging is not permitted)
  • The Showroom at Sea (600-seat theatre/main show lounge; also serves Holland America’s enrichment program (via a partnership with BBC Earth)
  • Queen’s Room (40-seat meeting room, hosts digital workshops via Microsoft partnership, computer classes, social networks, blogging, photo editing)
  • Photo Gallery & Shop; Art Gallery
  • Wine Tasting Bar, Gourmet Shops (bottles available for purchasing, wine sampling)
  • Wajang Theatre & Culinary Arts Centre (203-seat cinema; offers culinary classes and cooking shows presented in demonstration kitchens)
  • Atrium Terrace with boutiques; Atrium Shops (boutiques for duty-free tobaccos and liquor, perfumes, watches, clothing, HAL logo merchandise, souvenirs); Marabella Luxury Shop
  • Ocean Bar (121-seat Atrium bar and lounge, with dance floor and stage for live performances)
  • Casino (served by Casino Bar and Sports Bar)
  • Hudson Room (40-seat meeting room; used as Cards Room)
  • Half Moon Room (60-seat meeting room)
  • MIX Lounge (has 3 parts, with live music and trivia games)
  • Explorations Cafe (88-seat specialty coffee bar and patisserie; also serves as ship’s Library and Online Centre/Internet computers room)
  • Explorer’s Lounge & Bar (60-seat lounge with bar; classical concert performances)
  • Neptune Lounge (24-seat club venue for Deluxe Suite and Pinnacle guests only)
  • Fitness Center (gym with separate Aerobics Room); 2 jacuzzis
  • Greenhouse Spa & Salon; Lido Pool area, served by Lido Bar and Terrace Grill; Sea View Pool area served by Sea View Bar
  • The Retreat (sun deck area, adults-only)
  • Crow’s Nest (250-seat observation lounge; bar and dance floor; becomes disco at night)
  • Tennis Court; Basketball Court; Shuffleboard
  • Club HAL (kids lounge, complimentary youth programming)
  • The Loft (teens club lounge area, with Video Games Arcade, computers, PlayStations; teen disco)
  • The Oasis (40-seat teen-only outdoor area).

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Named after Veendam Holland (capital city of the Dutch province Groningen), Veendam is Holland America's 4th (last) S-class liner, with sisterships MaasdamRyndamStatendam. Ship's Inaugural Cruise/Maiden Voyage was on January 14, 1996. Ship's godmother was Mary Frances Debbie Reynolds (US actress, singer and businesswoman / 1932-2016).

Ship's interior is floral-themed. In the Atrium area is the 3-story high impressive cut-glass sculpture "Jacob's Ladder". The liner has an USD 2+ million art collection - from classic paintings of life and stylized flowers to flower-themed ceiling murals. A valuable antique is the Japanese samurai armor from late-17th-century.

(Holland America) MS Veendam refurbishment 2016 review

During drydock 2016 (done at Freeport Bahamas) the Veendam vessel received the following Suite cabin upgrades:

  • furnishings (sofas, chairs, headboards), carpeting, wall coverings, privacy curtains, draperies, bed runners, bed skirts, (vanity), new make-up vanities (quartz stone tops, modern lighting), dressers, dressing tables, nightstands, LED reading lights, wardrobes (with lighted closet rod)
  • cabin decors and amenities (espresso coffee machine, binoculars, free mimosas with in-cabin breakfasts)
  • USB outlet (on the bed's headboard), power outlets, LED ceiling lights
  • BOSE SoundDock (iPod stations)
  • interactive HDTV system (Internet capabilities, free movies on demand)
  • All Suite bathrooms were also renovated.

Veendam ship's 2016 refurbishment was part of Holland America Line's USD 300 million fleet renovation program (scheduled for 2016-2018) that also included updating onboard entertainment, dining and suites fleetwide.

Also in 2016, Holland America Line updated the Veendam's shipboard programming (enrichment, entertainment and children) replacing the old "Dancing With the Stars" with "BBC Earth" content.

  • The ship's theatre lounge started hosting daily expert lectures, presentations, a nature-themed game show with BBC Earth screenings and introductions by the crews that filmed these series. A signature concert in the evenings was based on the "Frozen Planet" program (polar regions-themed) - a spectacular multimedia show with live musicians.
  • The ship's children (Club HAL) facilities featured an explorer trail, workshops (including on journalism and filming), fact shows (animals, dinosaurs).

Holland America themed cruises featured access to the BBC Earth series creators, sharing behind-the-scenes media and stories. Children had the opportunity to participate in filming workshops.

In 2009, during the drydock refurbishment in Freeport Bahamas, 2 decks of new balcony cabins were added to the ship's rear. The refit also added Lanai staterooms (on Promenade Deck).

Aegean Majesty User Reviews

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smaller older ship

by Craigscruises4u
38 Reviews written
8 days, round-trip from Stockholm, Sweden
Departure date: 11 Jun 1999
Cruise number 9 . Guests of PSARA and Holland America Line, 10 Agency managers cruising on the HAL MS Veendam Departure date : 11th June 1999 Cabin number : C612.- mid ships deck 5 Oceanview Total pax : 1350 , Crew :568 : Decks : 11 Cruise - Baltic - 7 nights Stockholm return ( see map...

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