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Reviews (2,227)
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Reviewed July 28, 2011

I first saw the S.S. ROTTERDAM in 1986 while on a cruise in Alaska. I was on a smaller and slower ship when she passed us. WOW, what a truly magnificent ship she was steaming by us over the icy waters of Inside Passage. I longed to walk her decks one day and experience the stuff of legends.

Unfortunately, I was never able to ride her as a passenger. So when I booked a transatlantic crossing on her replacement, the M.V. ROTTERDAM to their namesake city, I thought I would finally get to see the one time pride of the Dutch Merchant Marine. What a disappointment! All movement around the ship is controlled by electronic key passes and a security staff that L.P. Beria, founder of the Soviet KGB, would have been proud of. The security staff is everywhere. And the most storied rooms onboard: The Ritz-Carlton Room, the first and second class dinning room, the theater, the Queen's Room, First Class Smoking Room, et.al. are all off limits, even with the paid tour. What a disappointment! Attempts to see these spaces brought rude scoldings from the security staff. While watching the video production "The ROTTERDAM Experience" a uniformed guard came in and said it's closed for the night and shut it off without any apology. Entreaty to the hotel's desk clerk fell on deaf ears. The security staff has the upper hand, and they gladly exercise it.

The ship is a too far to walk to the city center, so there are two rather expensive restaurants aboard for dining. The casual Lido Restaurant and the costly Club Room. Entrees in the Lido Restaurant at dinner ranged from about 19 Euros to 23 Euros, and everything was ala carte. A bowl of soup for a starter was 9 Euros and the prices for various green salads were about 15 Euros. The food was good but not exceptional. Also the waitress refused to bring tap water to the table, so we were forced to purchase bottled water. Her excuse was that a glass of tap water is only provided to those whom need it to take medicine.

Apparently, the ship is controlled by the hotel, the tour concession, and the catering company, and never the twain shall meet. The only relationship they have is that they are all located on the same ship. It's a system that isn't working, and the ship being in bankruptcy is evidence of that. I might suggest that the entire operation takes a lesson from an early American axiom, "United we stand. Devided we fall." Until that time, I have no desire to return.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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6  Thank FXPeditions
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 22, 2011

My girlfriend got one night for 2 in this hotel as a present for her birthday, so I was lucky! This hotel is actually an old ship from the Holland-America Line, which became obsolete when commercial airlines started flying between Europe and the US. Anyhow, this was their flagship and it was still tiptop when it was taken out of business. Fortunately it got a second life as a hotel.
The room we had, I think it was 1002, was very spacious. We thought we would get a small inside cabin, but this was a 'Superior' room, and indeed it was! Very modern, clean, two windows (portholes of course), spacious bathroom and the room itself was also very spacious! There was a LCD-tv with digital TV and the bed was very, very comfortable. The walls are quite thin, also you can hear everything that happens down the hall. But I live in a city center, so I'm used to noise and people shouting, so other guests which walk by talking to each other doesn't bother me at all.
The staff was friendly. There was free internet (great!), but the signal wasn't strong enough although our room was close to the lobby. We didn't try the breakfast because it was too expensive for us (€18,50pp). One downsight: On checkin we were told that the cost of using the minibar in the room was €9,50. She explained that it didn't matter if we took one drink, or emptied the minibar completely, the cost is €9,50. So I almost took a coke immediately when I entered the room, until my girlfriend told me this was too good to be true and indeed: a coke from the minibar was €3,- and the €9,50 are additional costs for just using the minibar. Hmm.. quite expensive and also a bit misleading I guess. I would be ashamed if I were the receptionist and had to charge €12,50 for one coke. Anyhow, our stay was very nice and comfortable.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank RikBrouwer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 17, 2011

I stayed on the "SS Rotterdam" (aka Cruise Hotel) in April 2011 for 1 night. This hotel is located on the SS Rotterdam, a former Holland America Line cruiseliner and used for sailings between Europe and New York, and also around the world trips.

The ship will never sail out again, it's now positioned on a quai with an upcoming neighbourhood nearby. It's location is reasonable, views around are very good, but the distance to public transport (metro line) is quite far and therefore not for everybodies liking.

Despite that, the city of Rotterdam is served by the water taxi, which can be booked from the ship to anywhere in/around the city of Rotterdam. Beware that the cost of these watertaxi can be high (crossing of the Maas river to the city centre is close to EUR 20,-).
Also a EUR 2,50 oneway/EUR 4.00 return ticket on the ferry can be booked from a kiosk in front of the hotel. That ship, operated by Spido, sails once per hour on average. It's a cheap and nice alternative way of transport.

About the hotel.

Check-in was chaotic. Only 2 young girls acts as check-in staff on the counter, with about 20 guests waiting to be served. 2 other counters were not staffed, so waiting times were too long. Also no airconditioning in the lobby seems available.

Room:

a large room, small hallway and a seperated bedroom area (with coffee/tea, LCD TV), and seperated seating area (with make-up, some storage). A bathroom is very basic, but clean and offers everything you need. There is only a shower, no bath.

Minibar:
Stocked with average drinks, pay EUR 9,50 and you take it all. You cannot pay for just 1 beer or softdrink. Your only choice is pay for the complete contents of the minibar.

Breakfast buffet:

Plenty of food available, large variaty of breads and fruits, cereal and warm dishes. Pancakes are prepared on demand as well baked eggs (showcooking). Coffee/Tea is selfservice from a machine. The breakfast room (Lido restaurant) is large, and can be busy/crowded. That might be the reason that the hotel offers 2 sessions of breakfast (either choose one of these 2 timings).

On the Deck:

Small "poolbar" serving drinks, no delivery on the table, so get it yourself from the bar. Price level is high. Do not expect a nice pool either, depth is maybe 50cm max, no way that it can be used for a swim, and the water was seemingly dirty during our stay. Also general public can access this deck just to look around or have a drink.

Check-out:

This went pretty quick, but an error was found in our invoice which had to be corrected. The staff was willing to solve this quickly, so that was handled correctly.

Overall:

on Average a clean hotel, interesting property, but can be busy (also general public, tour visitors, exhibitions etc.) Most areas are 'public', only the hallways to the rooms are closed off by secured doors.
Staff is mostly young (teenagers, trainees), so expect them not to act professionally at all times. We noticed details in the breakfast service, rude language in the check-in area etc.
Breakfast is very good, but pricey. Beware that no place for breakfast is elsewhere nearby, so you have not much choice other then going in the city centre (which costs you about 45 minutes at least). The room is standard, but comfy and a lot of space, and clean.

Recommendable: yes but at a pricelevel of EUR 75,- per night max. Otherwise you better take another hotel elsewhere to receive a better overall experience.

Note: as a hotel guest, you can NOT enjoy a tour on the ship, so if you want to explore more, an additional (high) fee is asked for.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank skycruiserNL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 21, 2011

The hotel in located in the old passenger / cruise vessel ss Rotterdam. We arrived a bit late in the evening, but still could enjoy the sun on the deck near the pool with a nice drink. During the day you make a tour through the vessel including the bridge, engineroom etc. We expecte small rooms for the price but instead it was a large room with a normal bathroom (Shower only) and a walk in closet. This vessel was not designed for cruising but travelling in style. The rooms were just perfect. Breakfast was in the Lido restaurant and then we noticed that there were a lot of people on board.
The hotel has a nice bar. In fact this is one of the first hotel bar were actually guest enjoyed a drink in the evening. For us it was a perfect stay the moment we arrived we were in a relaxing different world.

Room Tip: No idea. Just book as we did.
  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled on business
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Thank normandic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 12, 2011

We stayed in the Cruise Hotel for one night last weekend. The boat itself is beautiful and the views over the city and harbor are very nice. The downside of the location is that it is quite far away from the city center. Transportation to the city center by boat with Spido stops around 17:00 already. You have to take a water taxi then (more expensive) or go by car as the metro is quite far away.
The rooms are nicely decorated in the original style of the ship. They have all the features you would expect of a hotel in this price range (good beds, tv, mini bar etc).
Would certainly recommend to stay there one or two nights to experience the cruise feeling and enjoy the views / ship.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Peter_and_Suzanne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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