It was our first day on the cruise ship MS Eurodam by Holland America Line. We were very excited to discover the gems of Spain. Our trip began in the harbour of Barcelona and on board we discovered our amazing Signature Suite.
When we stepped into our Signature Suite on the Eurodam, our luggage was already there. Also a lot of information was available, including a deck plan of the MS Eurodam and the German-language program for the first day. The program included all the information about what to do on onboard. But first we had a look at all the amenities of our cabin. Afterwards we went to the Sail Away party at 5 pm on deck 9.
The Signature Suites on the Eurodam are all recently renovated and decorated in light gray and brown tones.
There is a large sofa with an armchair and a coffee table. On the table was an empty fruit bowl with a list of fruits. On the list you can mark the desired fruit in the beginning of the trip. The choice was between red and green apples, bananas, pears and oranges. You will then receive complimentary fresh fruits. When needed, the fruit basket is refilled during the trip. Beside the sofa stood a big dressing table with an illuminated mirror, a magnifying mirror and a hair dryer. The bathroom was equipped with a large double sink, a shower, toilet and a whirlpool bathtub. Also, there was shower gel, shampoo and conditioner from Elemis, a famous British spa and skincare brand.
There were also personalized cruise stationery and three postcards of the Eurodam. Additionally we received an ONBOARD value booklet for Signature Suite guests, the program for excursions and a booklet with port Informations for our cruise. The ONBOARD value booklet is a saving book with a variety of onboard services and amneties such as:
Also we found our card for the Soda package. We had pre-ordered the Soda Package online. The Soda package contained Cola, Fanta, Sprite, Tonic Water and Ginger Ale from the tap (no cans). It does not contain water. We paid US$ 25.00 online and received a value of US$ 50.00. We had bought two packages, which was to much. We did not drink so much soda due to the long time on land in the ports. Next time we would only buy one package. You have to carry the card for the soda package all the time with you, because they swipe the card everytime you purchase a soda from the package. We could use the soda package in every bar and restaurant.
The Signature suite had a big working corner with a large window to the balcony. Here was the minibar and we found Binoculars for use during the voyage. For our luggage there were three wardrobes with double doors, we really had a lot of space. Here we could have easily accommodated luggage for 14 days. In the wardrobe were life jackets as well as two nice bathrobes, an umbrella and a basket for shoes. Here one could put in shoes for the free shoeshine service.
Above the sofa hung a big flatscreen television with approx. 48 inches. On the television we found information about the menus of the restaurants and get travel tips. The video On Demand Interactive TV System contained a lot of movies and series in different languages. Our balcony was really big. There were two armchairs and a table. The only deficiency: we had the balcony directly next to the glass lift and one could see perfectly from the lift on to our balcony. It was a pity, but we did not want to get disturbed by that, because otherwise the balcony was simply wonderful.
Now we were curiuos to see the rest of the Eurodam. However, before we left our cabin we ordered an ice bucket for our champagne. Aboard Holland America Line each guest above 21 years old may bring one bottle of wine or champagne (no larger than 750ml) in their carry-on luggage at the beginning of the cruise, which may be enjoyed in the cabin. For additional wine or champagne bottles you have to pay a US$18.00 corkage fee. Other spirits are not permitted. The ice bucket came immediately and we got to know our very friendly cabin steward.
At 3 pm the mandatory sea drill took place on the Eurodam. After the drill we went on deck 9. On deck 9 the sail away party took place. We enjoyed Spanish tapas and drinks (charged). A really fantastic variety of tapas was offered and there were tables everywhere around the pool. We enjoyed the sunshine and the Spanish music while leaving Barcelona.
Before dinner we went to the welcome aboard champagne hour at the Art Gallery on deck 2. Besides many other pictures, we saw two 3D pictures of Romero Britto. We found out that many pieces of art are offered exclusively onboard by Park West. Art lovers can buy a piece of Art which will be delivered home. A little bit further on deck two we also found the amazing Gallery Bar.
We chose the open seating for dinner in the main dining room. Open seating means that we could choose to go to dinner between 5:30 pm and 9:15 pm. Sometimes we had to wait a bit for a free table. In that case we received a Buzzer which lighted up when the table was free. Just like on other cruises we could choose a starter, a main Course and a dessert. Icewater was complimentary. They offered a good variety of wines which you could order (charges apply).
After dinner we visited the Smooth Sailing Show of the Cruise Director with Location Guide Tom and afterwards the B.B. King´s All-Stars Club. We can recommend both. At the Smooth Sailing Show, Tour Guide Tom gives really excellent tipps for excursions ashore. We really liked the fact, that Tom gives you a lot of information about the ports. On other ships we experienced this kind of show as a sales pitch for land excursions offered by the cruise line. This is not the case on the Eurodam. You get great informations for visiting the cities on your own. Tom also gives you advice on local food you should try at the destinations. At the B.B. Kings Blues Club a motown band plays the best Memphis music.
The exciting first day came to an end for us with a cocktail and a show. In the cabin we found the program for the next port and a cute towel animal with a chocolate greeting. We were excited to visit Valencia tomorrow, the first gem of Spain on our trip with the Eurodam.