For weeks now I've been following Holland America Line's Eurodam News Blog and counting the days (only 15 more!) until I reach Southampton and embark for a week-long sailing that includes the Dedication Ceremony in Rotterdam on July 1st. Having experienced a similar event aboard Oosterdam a few years ago, I know it will be a HUGE celebration, especially with Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands serving as Eurodam’s godmother.
Completion of the ship is certainly moving along at a quick pace. Only yesterday the materials for the fourteen cabanas to be located in the Retreat on Deck 11 were hoisted on board, and workmen are already busy assembling them. Cabanas in the Retreat offer a spa-like private area where passengers can relax with refreshments and deluxe leisure amenities. The tented cabanas are being furnished with modern woven chaise loungers, ottomans, and upholstered settees. All include the use of bathrobes and plush towels, hand-held fans, an Evian spray mister, and iPods preloaded with music. Chilled waters are available and guests can look forward to iced fruit skewers in mid-morning and frozen grapes, chocolate-covered strawberries, and a glass of champagne in the afternoon. An additional eight cabanas located around the Lido pool. Sounds heavenly and I'll certainly try to reserve a cabana before they are all booked up.
On a practical note, I'll be "connected" while aboard Eurodam with my own laptop computer so I was pleased to learn that 60% of staterooms feature safes large enough to accommodate a laptop, while the remaining 40% have a standard-size safe. Due to the ship’s structural design, stateroom location determines whether it has a laptop-size safe or standard safe in the closet. I'll try to find out how to determine that in advance while I'm on board. All in-cabin safes are operated by using a personal four-digit code so valuables are conveniently accessible.
In order to share the unique experience of the special inaugural cruise and Eurodam Dedication Ceremony, mark your calendar and check the Cruise Diva Blog for daily updates starting on June 28th. In the meantime, catch the Eurodam News Blog for photos of the ship's progress.