27
Nov 2013

Saying Thanks to the Crew at Thanksgiving

Submitted by: HAB Editorial Team
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At Holland America Line, we hear a lot of praise and kudos about our crew from our guests. Many times, it’s the crew that make a Holland America Line cruise an exceptional vacation experience. Going above and beyond to add a special touch, taking that extra step to make things perfect, a simple smile and good morning. What makes Holland America Line’s crew exceptional is that all of these extra touches come from the heart. They are genuine and sincere, done out of a true desire to make every moment memorable. To thank our crew onboard, each ship honors an Employee of the Month, someone who has gone that extra mile. The ships also have a monthly Service Award ceremony recognizing years of service, as well as a new hire luncheon to welcome all of the new crew to the Holland America Line family.

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We just came back from a Caribbean Cruise on the Maasdam. We would like to thank the crew who served us so well. Our room stewards, Agung and Kadek, our room was always neat and clean and they were always helpful. Our dining room waiters, Trisna and AA, were friendly and always ready to answer any questions we had. Our wine stewards Neil and Jerry were always friendly with a ready smile. The dining room staff always made our mealtime a happy one. In the Pinnacle Grill we had Kristina, Ary and Jane, as usual they were most attentive to us and very friendly. On the Lido deck we made friends with Dessy, Patricia and Mahrub, who truly made breakfast and lunch a delight. Jodene in the Gift Shop was most helpful. Our thanks to Holland America for having such a wonderful staff. They truly made our cruise a most enjoyable one. We are looking forward to our next one. — Guests Al & Pat De Paolo

Loyalty and dedication are a large part of the Holland America Line culture. Every month we honor the crew members who reach a milestone year of employment with the company. Statendam recently awarded 10-, 15- and 20-year service pins to several crew members who made up 155 years of total service! Stateroom Inspector Sumartono Sastro was honored for his 30 years with a specially made ring that has the Holland America Line logo in gold and three diamonds each signifying 10 years of service.

From left: Hotel Director Bert van Mackelenberg; Tailor Gerarado Malaca – 15 years; Stateroom Inspector Sumartono Sastro – 30 years; Executive Housekeeper Albert Lammers; Personal Cook Filipino Herminio Pagtalunan – 10 years; Security Guard Jose Cope, Jr. – 10 years; Staff Captain Michel Boer; Assistant Cook Joel Pugoen – 15 years; Security Officer John Prins; Poissonnier CDP Paulito Sante – 20 years; Restaurant Steward Willy Brand – 20 years; Dining Room Manager Donny Dharmawan; Culinary Operations Manager Bart Groenveld – 15 years; Senior Locksmith Oscar Padilla – 20 years; 1st Officer Albert Kienloff and Captain Eric van der Wal.

From left: Hotel Director Bert van Mackelenberg; Tailor Gerarado Malaca – 15 years; Stateroom Inspector Sumartono Sastro – 30 years; Executive Housekeeper Albert Lammers; Personal Cook Filipino Herminio Pagtalunan – 10 years; Security Guard Jose Cope, Jr. – 10 years; Staff Captain Michel Boer; Assistant Cook Joel Pugoen – 15 years; Security Officer John Prins; Poissonnier CDP Paulito Sante – 20 years; Restaurant Steward Willy Brand – 20 years; Dining Room Manager Donny Dharmawan; Culinary Operations Manager Bart Groenveld – 15 years; Senior Locksmith Oscar Padilla – 20 years; 1st Officer Albert Kienloff and Captain Eric van der Wal.

I sailed aboard ms Zuiderdam in November 2012, from Fort Lauderdale to the Bahamas, Aruba, Curacao, Costa Rica and Panama. I had such a wonderful experience and the crew was fantastic, especially the pool attendants. These guys really know how to treat people with such great hospitality. Special recognition to Nestor Duran Jr., Sarkadi, Irman Nadhiantari, Dennis Magpoc, Pete Gatpandan and Girley Mendoza. Keep up the great work! – Alexander J. Uribe

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Recently, Veendam also honored five long-serving employees who, when you combine their years of service, have exactly 100 years with the line. Pictured are the honorees as well as their managers who came to celebrate the achievements of their team members.

 Pictured from left: Culinary Operations Manager Cliff Strerath, Executive Chef Owen de Souza, Restaurant Steward Nono Setiono – celebrating 35 years, Dining Room Manager Ketut Johny Athena Frederix, Assistant Cook Elpidio Berja, Jr. – celebrating 20 years, Lead Stateroom Attendant Adhy Priyono – celebrating 10 years, Executive Housekeeper Parmonangan Nainggolan, Foreman SA Edilberto Ampuan – celebrating 20 Years and Staff Captain Colm Ryan – celebrating 15 years.


From left: Culinary Operations Manager Cliff Strerath; Executive Chef Owen de Souza; Restaurant Steward Nono Setiono – celebrating 35 years; Dining Room Manager Ketut Johny Athena Frederix; Assistant Cook Elpidio Berja, Jr. – celebrating 20 years; Lead Stateroom Attendant Adhy Priyono – celebrating 10 years; Executive Housekeeper Parmonangan Nainggolan; Foreman SA Edilberto Ampuan – celebrating 20 Years, and Staff Captain Colm Ryan – celebrating 15 years.

I cruised Holland America for the first time on a 10 day cruise to Panama, Half Moon Cay, Bahamas, Curacao, Aruba and Costa Rica and I was simple amazed at the level of service provided. The room attendants did an outstanding job of keeping the room clean and in order. The dining experience was excellent from the main dining to the buffet so enjoyable and the food was delicious. There were several people who served our group that kept us happy; Din Din, Denny, Mayan and manager Steptoe made sure we were happy. I fell in love with the crew on the Zuiderdam and hope we can travel with them again in the future maybe to another location because they certainly do know how to treat the passengers with the utmost love and respect. — Guest Pearlie Sanders

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Many of the Holland America Line crew members are far from home. They hail from all over the world, and it’s an international melting pot of cultures. A large portion of the crew are from the Philippines. When Amsterdam recently called at Manila, the ship welcomed more than 1,500 visitors over the two-day call.

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So a heartfelt thanks to all of the Holland America Line crew!

6 Comments

  1. Super photos of super crew members! Love seeing all the crew I know from 2 Statendam cruises this year: Bert and Bart, Albert L, Donny, Willy. Thanks for the great cruises!

  2. I could agree more! A friend and I sailed on Amsterdam earlier this year from Hong Kong to Cape Town and it was our first experience of Holland America. The service and attention paid by our stateroom stewards and La Fontaine dining room stewards as well as the stewards in to Piano Bar was exceptional. They all contributed to making the voyage memorable experience.
    Of course we must not forget the role played by all the other staff members starting from the top with Capt. Jonathan Mercer. He always to be seen around the vessel and ready to chat to the guests.
    Many thanks HAL , I hope to travel onboard again some day.

    J.E.Dixon

  3. Thursday, November 19, 2008

    To: Captain Edward G Van Zaane, ms Amsterdam
    Hotel Manager, Willem Cruijsberg, ms Amsterdam

    Notes from my cruise.

    Very pleasurable people and events.

    1. I wish to extend my personal thanks to Holland America Line for providing religious Services onboard your ships. This is my seventh cruise with Holland America and I have enjoyed the services on every single cruise. The wide variety of Chaplin’s and denominations selected by Holland America made each service interesting and very enjoyable.

    2. The following personnel have performed their job in an exceptional manner whenever I have been lucky enough to have contact with them:

    A. Ogai, works on the Lido deck behind the serving line where he is responsible of juice and other items. Ogai always has a friendly smile and always greets me and everyone else at his station with a friendly ‘hello’ and many times he asks if guests need anything else.

    B & C. Bramadi and Ganjar are the first people that every guest onboard the ms Amsterdam come in contact with when visiting the Lido deck meal line and Holland America selected the perfect Lido greeters. In their jobs as Assistant Stewards on the Lido deck both have made it an absolute pleasure to start my meals with their friendly smiles and greetings.

    D. Adonez, Beverage Attendant at the Explorer’s Lounge is truly remarkable. In my short nineteen days aboard I have never seen Adonez under any supervision. I have watched him work alone for weeks; taking any requests of the people waiting for the 2000 Main Dinner seating, keeping the lounge spotless and spending many moments keeping the assortment of chocolates filled and arranged neatly. I always find it wonderful when someone working within a business can be trusted to work totally independent within the company, knowing that he will always perform in an excellent manner.

    E. Jimpul, the morning and afternoon cook on the lido deck, greets me each morning with a broad smile and inquires on my previous day activities. He has also expresses interest in my past jobs during my Naval career and we have spent some time on my visits to the Philippines. Jimpul is a very warm hearted and kind person that takes interest in guests and makes them feel most welcome while onboard the ms Amsterdam. Additionally I must commit on the dedication he shows to his job; over and over again during my visits to his cooking station he is checking the temperature with his infrared thermometer and rotating food items so everything on his serving line is hot and ready to serve.

    F. Arif, deck eight doorman for the La Fontaine Dining Room and while working on the Lido deck is just remarkable in his ability to remember names and faces. Arif asked for our names as we entered to La Fontaine on our very first night and has never forgot our name of failed to greet us anytime he is at the front door or walking the Lido deck. Arif is an exceptionally kind and helpful; he always ensures any request that we have is filled or passed up the chain-of-command. I have noticed that Holland America already has Arif serving food at the pool during special events. He stated he really enjoyed his job when we talked with him later inside the Lido.

    G. Leo, the Piano Bar Waiter greeted Mrs. B and I by name while we were walking the Lido Deck during a special event by the pool. I had to think for several moments where I had seen Leo, but he knew it was on the Zaandam over two years ago during a Mediterranean Cruise when he worked on the Lido Deck. Leo’s memory and kind manor make him an exceptional candidate for promotion in the future. His present promotion to the position as Piano Bar Waiter has proved that Holland America has also spotted his wonderful abilities.

    H. One Holland America Petty Officer has made our current and past travels just a pleasure. Petty Officer Rahman, the In Room Dining Room Manager seems to be everywhere. I cannot think of a day I have not been greeted by Rahman around the ship or when I needed help on something he was close by. Just the other day I was requesting a special plate of food in the La Fontaine Dining Room with a Dining Room Steward, after reading the dinner menu, at noon, and out from the kitchen door steps Rahman who greeted me by name and took my request. My dinner that night was cooked just as requested. Petty Officer Rahman, Mrs. B and I have not seen one another in years but when Rahman first presented himself to Mrs. B and I in the Queen’s Lounge during a special event, he remembered not only our dining room table location in the Rotterdam Dining Room but he also remembered our table number on the Zaandam in 1996. Petty Officer Rahman is exceptional.

    I. Assistant Dining Room Manager Donny meets my wife and I at the door each and every night and always asks if there is anything he can do to make our evening in the La Fontaine dining room better. Additionally, before we have been served our main meal and always before we depart the dining room Assistant Dining Room Manager Donny asks if service and meal has been acceptable. His concern for quality is exceptional and should be rewarded by Holland America. Additionally it was noted in the Indonesian Crew Show guide that he took a top position to ensure the show was exceptional when we saw it. Bravo Zulu Donny, you are just super!

    J. Anhar, our Dining Room Steward, is a real gentleman and first-rate supervisor. He always stands by our table to greet both of us and ensures that Mrs. B has her seat pulled out and adjusted for her. He then asks about our day and inquires if there is anything special that we need before he starts dinner service. But the greatest quality of Anhar has been his supervision of his assistant Arjana. All during our continued excellent dinner service Anhar has allowed Arjana to assume more and more Dining Room Steward tasks, which is the mark of a superior leader in any job. He has trained his assistant to be a superior Holland America Dining Room Steward. The single mark of a superior supervisor is to train people under them to assume their job so there is never a change in quality when he leaves his job, gets sick, goes on vacation or is advanced to a higher position. For this, and this alone, Anhar has proved his total devotion to Holland America and should be marked for advancement.

    K. The Holland America employee that has made eating every night in the La Fontaine Dining Room one of the most enjoyable experiences Mrs. B and I have ever had onboard any Holland America ship is Arjana. Arjana has proven to be outstanding Dining Room Assistant Steward of all time. Arjana meets us at our table each night along with Anhar and always allows Anhar the first greeting and waits for Anhar to ask us if there is anything that we need and then delivers the request so Anhar does not have to interrupt his greeting. As more proof of the ability of Arjana being the perfect Assistant Steward Mrs. B and I have requested several items with our first meal and a hot tea flavor that we enjoy. Not once in our short six days onboard the ms Amsterdam has any request ever had to been made more than once and every night we receive each request at the same time during our meal. The table service of Arjana has been superior and made our evening meal a total pleasure. Arjana should be marked for advancement by Holland America.

    L. My genuine admiration for the job done twice a day by our Stateroom Steward Azwar. He has performed his responsibilities in a constant superior manor and Mrs. B and I look forward to returning to our Stateroom after breakfast and dinner to our spotless Stateroom. I sincerely hope that Azwar stays with Holland America and he works toward advancement. We have not spent mush time with Azwar in conversation because he is usually working in another Stateroom and we never interrupt a HAL employee unless we need something. I understand that you train employees to work around guests without disturbing them but you have exceeded this with Azwar. He is a spirit that makes our Stateroom spotless, as I said before, and does it, never to be seen doing it.

    M. I have also noted the superior ability shown by the Stateroom Supervisor Asep. In my 23 years in the United States Navy I found it very simple to spot exceptional employees performing their daily supervision jobs. This is because they were always available, on-the-deck and not in some office waiting for a phone call about a problem that needs attention. I my first four short days onboard the ms Amsterdam I have found Asep in the Stateroom passageways eleven times. Asep is always checking on the work of his Stateroom Stewards ensuring every minor flaw is corrected long before it could be discovered by any guest.

    3. Moving the evening entertainment, the very few times you did, for guests dining at 2000 to 1830 was just wonderful and allowed my wife and I free time after dinner. This should be a Holland America standard. Guests are able to go to bed early, attend one of the many events available at night or just walk off dinner on the decks of the ship. Showtime for Main Seating Guests at 2200 whenever there is a lost hour due to a time zone advancement change or they have early tours in the next day’s port makes seeing the entertainment questionable.

    4. I what to thank the Dining Room Staff for heating the coffee cups before the coffee or tea in placed into the cups. This simple step enhanced the wonderful service. It is so very nice to have a cup of tea (or coffee) stay hot for the entire meal.

    5. The Skipper of Tender 11 at 9AM, 18 November 2008 performed his duties in a totally professional manner. He kept his tender along side the loading dock of the ms Amsterdam in the high winds and seas. I never saw the tender move even inches away from the dock during loading in wind and a driving rainstorm. I also wish to express my total surprise in the professional docking he performed at Lahaina. I never felt even a small bump as the tender was tied up at the pier. The harbor was well protected but the Skipper was superior in his handling of the tender.

    6. I was joking with Jimpul, the morning and afternoon cook on the Lido Deck at the start of the cruise on how strange it was that the Lido management had hot fresh waffles for guests, hot syrup on the steam table and then the guest is provided cold butter for the waffle. Jimpul took my very simple request of placing butter in a very small container that could be heated and now provides his guests with hot melted butter, when requested. It seemed simple to me, hot melted butter is provided guests when lobster is served in the Main Dining Room.

  4. 10.17 to 11.19.09

    17 November 2009

    To: Captain Rik Krombeen, ms Rotterdam VI

    Via: Hotel Manager, Simon De Boer, ms Rotterdam VI

    End of Cruise Notes:

    As the very first item, I want to express my sincere appreciation to you and the entire crew for the outstanding service I received from everyone I have had contact with during this 32 day cruise. Holland America has always selected excellent personnel. My very first cruise was with Holland America 10 years ago on the ms Veendam and after taking a cruise on several other cruise lines, Mrs. B and I always returned to Holland America because we never found any other company with such constant outstanding service. We are looking forward to many more cruises onboard Holland America Line ships.

    People that provided outstanding service:
    1. I wish to extend my personal thanks to Holland America Line for providing religious Services onboard your ships. This is my tenth cruise with Holland America and I have enjoyed the services on every single cruise. The wide variety of Chaplin’s and denominations selected by Holland America made each service interesting and very enjoyable. With budgets tight and the economy even tighter I understand that this might be one of those positions that might be a little lower on the mandatory, needed or even must-have list! We were bounced around to several different locations for the first two weeks of the thirty-two day cruise but did end up daily in the Wajang Theater.

    2. Roland Garcia, the morning omelet cook on Port side of the lido deck, greets both of us each morning with a broad smile. Mr. Garcia is always spotless and always speaks clearly and carries himself in a manor you would expect of someone that has great respect for the company he is working for and working to advance in.

    3. Ketut Asta Darmawan, our Dining Room Steward, is a real gentleman. He always stands by our table to greet both of us and ensures that Mrs. B has her seat pulled out and adjusted for her. He then asks about our day and inquires if there is anything special that we need before he starts dinner service. It should be noted that Mrs. B and I were provided note after note about the new three star discount if we used the Pinnacle Grill but we turned them all down just so we could stay with Ketut & Aris in the La Fontaine Dining Room at table 76.

    4. Additionally, the Holland America employee that has made eating every night in the La Fontaine Dining Room on the ms Rotterdam very enjoyable for Mrs. B and I is Aris Rismayana. The table service of Aris has been excellent and made our evening meal a total pleasure. Aria should be watched and marked for advancement by Holland America Line if he continues his outstanding service.

    5. (Because of our change of Staterooms (1885 & 2654) in the middle of the 32 day cruise this note will list four names!) My genuine admiration for the job done twice a day by our Stateroom Stewards Dirman, Gede, Dadang & Komang. All have performed their responsibilities in a constant superior manor and Mrs. Beall and I look forward to returning to our Stateroom after breakfast and dinner to our spotless Stateroom. I sincerely hope that Dirman, Gede, Dadang & Komang stay with Holland America and work themselves toward advancement. We have not spent a lot of time with Dirman, Gede, Dadang & Komang in conversation because all are usually working in another Stateroom and we never interrupt a HAL employee unless we need something. I understand that you train employees to work around guests without disturbing them but you have exceeded this with Dirman, Gede, Dadang & Komang. All are “spirits” that makes our Stateroom spotless, as I said before, never to be seen doing it.

    When we entered both our Stateroom on the first day I handed Dirman, Gede, Dadang & Komang list of requests to change our Stateroom in many ways to make our 32 day cruise more relaxing and to allow more counter space for our computer and personal effects. Every single request was performed by the time we returned from our evening meal. It is always the little things that Holland America does that makes us return over and over again and Dirman, Gede, Dadang & Komang meet the highest standards of Holland America Line.

    6. On the very first night onboard the ms Rotterdam, 17 October, Officer Margaretha Alleman , Assistant Dining Room Manager, greeted Mrs. B and I at our table and she was just exceptional in her English, the way she carried herself, her wonderful smile and how he made Mrs. B and I feel like we were honored guests onboard the ms Rotterdam VI. She had a small conversation with us and then continued on with escorting more and more guests to their tables. After several minutes Officer Margaretha Alleman returned to our table and completed the answer she started before he was interrupted by her duties. Wow! What a memory. Officer Margaretha Alleman is just exceptional.

    During our 32 day cruise Mrs. B and I have asked Officer Margaretha Alleman for several requests and she has always provided a kind nod of the head and words of assurance that each request would be answered and replied to as fast as possible. Not once has Officer Margaretha Alleman ever forgot any request, even if it took several days to provide the research for a recipe and typing up the answer.

    The night before we ended the first half of this wonderful cruise I overheard the couple at the next table that it was their 50th Wedding Anniversary while they were talking to my wife so the next time Officer Margaretha Alleman walked by our table I informed her of the special event very close to the end of the evening and she rushed to the kitchen and rushed back before the couple left for the evening and held a small celebration for them, all within just 10 minutes of being told of the special event. It is a very special touch like this that makes Holland America Line what it is.

    I hope you know what a superior employee Officer Margaretha Alleman is; during this short cruise we have watched her walk the entire Dining Room many, many times during the meal to help Stewards, clear tables, refill water and tea pots and even bring food from the kitchen when orders get backed up. Not once did I ever see Officer Margaretha Alleman ever talk down to an employee or publicly correct an employee. I strongly recommend Officer Margaretha Alleman for advancement for what I have seen as superior job performance.

    7. WOW, what a honor to meet your Dining Room Manager of the La Fontaine Dining Room Wawan Kartawan. A wonderful senior officer in your company that just makes the
    La Fontaine Dining Room run like clockwork. Officer Wawan Kartawan was always on top of everything under his control. No matter how early I got up for a tour and entered the Lido even before any serving line was open there was Officer Wawan Kartawan on the job instructing his assistant on needed touches to make the Lido perfect for the guests and helping any steward with large trays or completing table setups. When does this supervisor sleep? I repeat; not once did I ever get up before Officer Wawan Kartawan was on-the-job and moving at ‘light speed.’

    8. My father always taught me that the measure of a man or woman is best when he or she asks properly and treats others with respect and does the correct thing when he or she thinks nobody is watching them. On 23 October 2009 in the Lido Restaurant, on or about 1300, Mrs. B was watching the foot traffic when the Lido Restaurant Supervisor Office Ozgur Turnuklu was observed cleaning a table and when he got his hands and arms totally full of dirty table items he was walking to the back of the Lido to place the items in the dishwasher when he came upon a Lido Steward and said: “Sir; may I place these items on your tray?” The Steward naturally stopped for the Lido Restaurant Supervisor Office Ozgur Turnuklu where he placed the dirty dishes on the tray so Ozgur could continue his supervision job and the dishes continued on to the back room to be washed.

    What kind of wonderful supervisiors does Holland America Line hire? Lido Restaurant Supervisor Office Ozgur Turnuklu is one of the best examples I have ever seen with those kind words he addressed the person under his authority with. Without exception, this very small gesture on his part showed what a gentleman he really is inside and I will remember it always as doing the right thing under pressure when people are bumping into themselves during lunch in the Lido.

    9. How does Holland America find people like Maria, the HAL representative at the hotel in Athens where your guests spent a wonderful three days under her guidance and concern. Maria had all the answers on where to buy a six pack of soda two blocks away to where to get pills for a runny nose around the corner. When it took a cab ride to get to a store, Maria not only had the cab driver instructed by the Bell Captain as to which place we were to be taken she also insured that the total price of the trip was finalized before we left. And as we left I could see her jot down the license number of the cab we were in just in case we had a problem. She informed us during questions with her that she has worked with HAL for over 20 years and has loved every day of it. Holland America should put this individual in the front office in Seattle. What class!

    10. Three more excellent people working with HAL during our three days in Athens were the guides Penny and Alex and the driver Michael, all superior. All the tours were wonderful and Penny and Alex were so good that we almost forgot that it was raining for the entire three days we were in Athens. It’s always nice to help an entire country with a water shortage.

    11. Bus service to and from the ship in Barcelona, Spain was absolutely superior. There were busses lined up on the pier to take the large number of departing guests to downtown and just a few small 15 person vans later that night to return to the ship. The transportation coordinator did an excellent job.

    Speaking of bus transportation, I wish to thank Holland America Line for “spraying” every tour and pier bus before the guests use the bus. Keeping the guests healthy seems to be job one at HAL!

    12. I wish to thank the Macarena Hotel in Seville for the excellent lunch during the “Palaces of Seville’ tour. All the cold food was cold and the hot food was hot. Additionally, both meals in Israel “Nazareth Highlights & the Sea of Galilee” and the “Jerusalem & the Old City” tours were excellent. The meal on the” Giza Pyramids, Sphinx and Museum of Antiquities” was also absolutely outstanding. I might add that this was the only place that allowed a ‘soda’ for people that did not want to drink themselves under the table with unlimited wine provided.

    13. Ryan Molina, the Beverage Attendant in the Explorer’s Lounge is truly remarkable. His command of the English language is excellent and we have had some short talks about where I spend most of my time in the United States and was I surprised when he started listing off the names of the Baseball, Football, Hockey teams and some of the political leaders of my state. After many conversations with Ryan, he informed us that he took the job with Holland America because he was not able to book a job on another cruise line that he has had many contracts with. I also know from the way he presents himself, keeps the entire Explorer’s Lounge in perfect ship shape appearance and works under no supervision that you also saw in him his abilities and placed him in this independent job position. It would be a great loss to Holland America Line if you let this fine employee leave Holland America and return to “that other brand X cruise line!”

    14. The best overall music entertainment held onboard the ms Rotterdam during this entire 32 day cruise was done by The Piano Man Stryker. He held the following specials: Songs of Romance, Country Hoe Down Name That Tune, Stage & Screen Name That Tune, Hits of Broadway, Through The Decades, A Little Bit of Country, Oldies but Goodies, Around the World Name That Tune, etc., etc., etc.; but the absolute best, Standing Room Only, was his repeated Ol’ Tyme Gospel in the Piano Lounge twice and his filling of the entire Queen’s Lounge. Holland America should clone this entertainer and have him on every ship. I have never been so entertained by a single person night after night after night. The Energizer Bunny would wear out first!

    15. Adde Kurniawan, the La Fontaine Dining Room Door Man on Deck 5 was superior in his greeting of each and every guest, his polite conversation and his willingness to do anything to make the last moments of an outstanding dinner unforgettable.

    16. Because of his smile and attention to detail while working almost in a corner of the Lido; Arther Quilal-Lan stands out. Arther always presents himself well and handles the ‘throngs’ of adults wanting there ice cream very well; much better than I could ever do. I have watched him handle requests from three people at the same time and it never rattles-his-cage. His attention-to-detail is remarkable. Even while dishing out ice cream he watches the desert line and when something runs out or he is asked about an item he takes action to answer all questions and inform his supervisor of items needing attention. Thanks, Arther Quilal-Lan.

    17. Your Lido Chief De Partie, Mr. Cor Van Der Plas, on the Port side, is unquestionably one of the finest, hard working, and gracious Lido Chiefs I have had the pleasure of meeting over the last thirty-two days. There is nothing he will not put together and cook for me upon request. I genuinely hope that Holland America Line keeps this marvelous Chief within your company and gives him an early promotion at the first opportunity. No matter how early the Lido opened (and there were many on this cruise) Mr. Cor Van Der Plas held his head high and carried himself like someone that was very proud of the company he was working for. His English was first-rate!

    18. Why was my Stateroom so very clean? Well I have already told you about the first-rate work provided by my four Stateroom Stewards (moved in the middle of the thirty-two day cruise) but the person behind the Stewards who ensured the Holland America “Signature of Excellence” each and every day was Mr. Suryono, the Cabin Inspector for three entire decks, that as you know, have many times the rooms as the top suite decks. This Petty Officer was spotted by Holland America and advanced to the exact right position. We have talked about his job and some of the inspection jobs I had in the US Navy and I can see why he was selected for this position; he does not allow anything but exceptional cleaning on part of the room Stewards. I really enjoyed his remark during one of several conversations that his clip board was his ‘office.’ I told him about the Harvard Business School and the policy of M.B.W.A. (Management By Wandering Around), which is the only way any supervisor or CEO can truly know what is going on. I remember using white gloves in my zone inspections on US Navy war ships during a deployment and I thought that during many inspections that some sailors “’standing by’ for inspection were going to faint when they saw my white gloves!”

    19. I want to thank Dani, an Asst. Dining Room Steward in the La Fontaine Dining Room for the great job he does as he moves his cart of coffee, tea, hot water & cups between the tables around the Lido. He always addresses me by name and always has a smile. Thanks for refilling my cop daily and the daily smile no matter how early in the morning.

  5. 23 May 2009

    To: Captain Harm-Jan Arnold, ms Statendam

    Via: Hotel Manager, Theo Haanon, ms Statendam

    End of Cruise Notes:

    I wish to express my sincere appreciation to you and the entire crew for the outstanding service I received from everyone I have had contact with during this 14 day cruise. Holland America has always selected excellent personnel. My very first cruise was with Holland America 10 years ago on the ms Veendam and after taking a cruise on several other cruise lines Mrs. Beall and I always returned to Holland America because we never found any other company with such constant outstanding service. We are looking forward to October when we again sail with Holland America on the ms Rotterdam for over thirty days.

    People that provided outstanding service:

    1. I wish to extend my personal thanks to Holland America Line for providing religious Services onboard your ships. This is my ninth cruise with Holland America and I have enjoyed the services on every single cruise. The wide variety of Chaplin’s and denominations selected by Holland America made each service interesting and very enjoyable. With budgets tight and the economy even tighter I understand that this might be one of those positions that are lower on the ‘mandatory’ list!

    2. Moving the evening entertainment for guests dining at 2000 to 1900 was just wonderful and allowed my wife and I free time after dinner. I hope that this would be the Holland America standard. Guests are able to go to bed early, attend one of the many events available at night or just walk off dinner on the decks of the ship. Showtime for Main Seating Guests at 2200 when there was a lost hour due to a time zone advancement or the guests just had early tours in the next day’s port; made watching the 2200 hour entertainment questionable.

    And speaking of entertainment, I wish to express my thank you for “Kimika”, they were just great. I only wish I could have attended each of their four shows.

    John McDonnell was just wonderful. He had absolutely nonstop jokes. Yes not every joke was the best I ever heard but his ability to talk about his family made it real easy to bring each joke to the way I grew up or I could think of someone I knew that made the same mistakes.

    The banjo playing performed by Doug Mattocks was almost surpassed by the incredible knowledge he had of the instruments history. This is the first entertainer I have ever had the pleasure of seeing where the history of the instrument itself was as remarkable as the music produced by the virtuoso himself. The show was simply outstanding!

    3. Wahyu, works on the Lido deck behind the serving line where he is responsible for toast and provides limited help to the line cook. Wahyu always has a friendly smile and greets me and everyone else at his station with a friendly ‘hello’ and always asks if guests need anything else.

    4. Firman is the first person I have contact with on the Lido deck meal line and Holland America selected the perfect Lido greeter. In his job as Assistant Steward, he has made each day an absolute pleasure to start my meal with his friendly smile and personnel name greeting.

    5. Chris, the Beverage Attendant at the Lido Pool is truly remarkable. His command of the English language is excellent and we have had some short talks about his home town and the surrounding area which I have had the pleasure of visiting many, many times during my assignments in the United States Navy. He keeps the area spotless in whatever area he is assigned.

    6. Maciek, the morning cook on the lido deck, greets me each morning with a broad smile and inquires on my previous day activities. Maciek is always spotless and always speaks clearly and carries himself in a manor you would expect of someone that has great respect for the company he is working and working to advance in. We have had several discussions already on some of the highlights of the different ports we have visited and he has shown that he is a very warm hearted and kind person that takes interest in guests and makes them feel most welcome while onboard the ms Statendam. Additionally I must commit on the dedication he shows to his job; over and over again during my visits to his cooking station he is checking the temperature and rotating food items so everything on his serving line is hot and ready to serve.

    7. Agus, the doorman for the Rotterdam Dining Room asked for our names as we exited the Rotterdam Dining Room on our very first night and has never forgot our name or failed to greet us at the front door or anytime we meet him on the ship. Agus is an exceptionally kind and helpful; he always ensures any request that we have is filled or passed up the chain-of-command.

    8. Cecep, our Dining Room Steward, is a real gentleman and first-rate supervisor. He always stands by our table to greet both of us and ensures that Mrs. B has her seat pulled out and adjusted for her. He then asks about our day and inquires if there is anything special that we need before he starts dinner service. Additionally he provides both of us the next day’s menu and inquires if there is anything at all that we would like in addition to the menu to make our dining pleasure more enjoyable. But the greatest quality of Cecep has been his supervision of his assistant Yayat. All during our continued excellent dinner service Cecep has allowed Yayat to assume more Dining Room Steward tasks, which is the mark of a superior leader in any job. He has trained his assistant to be a future superior Holland America Dining Room Steward. The single mark of a superior supervisor is to train people under them to assume their job so there is never a change in quality when he leaves his job, gets sick, goes on vacation or is advanced to a higher position. For this, and this alone, Cecep has proved his total devotion to Holland America and should be marked for advancement. It should be noted that Mrs. B and I were provided paid for dinners in the Pinnacle Grill by Holland America but turned them down just so we could stay with Cecep and Yayat in the Rotterdam Dining Room.

    9. The Holland America employee that has made eating every night in the Rotterdam Dining Room one of the most enjoyable experiences Mrs. B and I have ever had onboard any Holland America ship is Yayat. Yayat has proven to be the outstanding Dining Room Assistant Steward of all time. Yayat meets us at our table each night along with Cecep and always allows his supervisor the first greeting and waits for Cecep to ask us if there is anything that we need and then Yayat delivers the request so Cecep does not have to interrupt his greeting. As more proof of the ability of Yayat being the perfect Assistant Steward Mrs. B and I have requested several items with our first meal and a hot tea flavor that we enjoy. Not once in our time onboard the ms Statendam has any request ever had to been made more than once and every night we receive each request at the same time during our meal. The table service of Yayat has been superior and made our evening meal a total pleasure.

    Yayat should be watched and marked for advancement by Holland America Line if he continues his outstanding service.

    10. My genuine admiration for the job done twice a day by our Stateroom Stewards Nur and I. Made. Both have performed their responsibilities in a constant superior manor and Mrs. Beall and I look forward to returning to our Stateroom after breakfast and dinner to our spotless Stateroom. I sincerely hope that Nur and I. Made stay with Holland America and work themselves toward advancement. We have not spent a lot of time with either Nur or I. Made in conversation because both are usually working in another Stateroom and we never interrupt a HAL employee unless we need something. I understand that you train employees to work around guests without disturbing them but you have exceeded this with Nur and I. Made. Both are “spirits” that makes our Stateroom spotless, as I said before, never to be seen doing it.

    When we entered our Stateroom on the first day I handed I. Made a list of requests to change our Stateroom in many ways to make our 14 day cruise more relaxing and to allow more counter space for our computer and personal effects. Every single request was performed by the time we returned from our evening meal. It is always the little things that Holland America does that makes us return over and over again and Nur and I. Made meet the highest standards of Holland America Line.

    11. A note must be made of the outstanding job performed by Gerscy at your Front Desk. After just a single meeting with Mrs. Beall and I on our first day aboard, she never forgot us and always greets us by name when we approach the Front Desk. Selecting Gerscy to work on the Front Desk shows the absolute high standards Holland America Line has in selecting Front Desk employees.

    12. Let me say that both Mrs. B and I had the pleasure of having Oka, a Steward on the Lido deck, approach us the morning of 15 May and remember our names table location and even what after dinner mints we liked when he was the Doorman of the Rotterdam Dining Room on the ms Westerdam over two (2) years ago. As I stated before, what an absolute pleasure it was and how remarkable it was that he spotted us from clear across the Lido sitting area. The Lido sitting area was extremely full this morning due to the Glacier Bay views and for Oka to spot us is just another example of him exceeding the high standards of Holland America Line.

    13. On 18 May, Tio surprised me during Royal Dutch High Tea when he brought to my table a packet of Bigelow Jasmine Green Tea. That in its self was not the issue that impressed me, it was the fact that Tio, over a week ago, brought me a selection of tea to my table during the same High Tea and I selected the Jasmine Green Tea and seven days later Tio remembered me and brought the Jasmine Tea to my table. The memory of Tio is absolutely outstanding and I want to share this note to you about his outstanding service. Tio is just remarkable and should be marked for advancement.

    14. Joshua, Beverage attendant, on deck eight, during the late seating was remarkable in the help he provided our table Steward on 17 May. Because of the large number of new people looking for their tables the night we left Seward, AK our Steward and Assistant Seward were trying to seat other guests at their tables so Joshua stepped right in and greeted the new guests, seated the new guests at their table and provided each person with a menu. He was just seconds in providing water for the guests when our Steward and Assistant Steward were able to catch up with their tasks and take over. Joshua showed just how well the entire team works together in the Rotterdam Dining Room.

    15. Another reason that the Rotterdam Dining Room works so very well is Petty Officer Robbin. Petty Officer Robbin is truly remarkable in helping all the Stewards in their tasks. Mrs. Beall and I have watched him serve food, clear tables and carry on a conversation with guests almost at the same time. I have noticed on the name tag that he is also in charge of “Crew Care!” I did not understand the term so I asked my Steward about the job and after he described the task to me I could understand why Petty Officer Robbin was picked for the job; he truly cares for the people under him. You have selected the perfect person for the job. I truly hope that Petty Officer Robbin advances further in your company for watching his management ability during the last two weeks, he has impressed me with making sure that excellence is always provided in the Rotterdam Dining Room.

    16. On 18 May, Officer Wayan Pugah greeted me at High Tea and he was just exceptional in his English, the way he carried himself and how he made Mrs. Beall and I feel like we were honored guests onboard the ms Statendam. He had a small conversation with us and then continued on with escorting more and more guests to their tables. After several minutes Officer Wayan Pugah returned to our table and completed the answer he started before he was interrupted by his duties. Wow! What a memory. Officer Wayan Pugah is just exceptional.

    17. On 18 May, during breakfast, (the Lido cook I have noted on my first LOC to you) Maciek, was on the opposite side of the Lido from the waffle maker, so after a small greeting between us I proceeded to the waffle maker and “bingo” there was Maciek looking for me and making me a hot waffle. Maciek absolutely went 110% out-of-his-way to make the start of my day special. On all the other HAL ships I have had the pleasure of being onboard I was always able to find melted butter for my waffle, so when I told that to Maciek, he always placed some cold butter found at the start of the serving line on a plate, places the plate on a hot surface allowing the butter to melt and then give me my hot waffle right out of the waffle maker with the melted butter. All this is such a small thing in the huge production you provide in your management of the ms Statendam hotel; but its people like Lido Chef Maciek that heard my simple request for some melted butter for my waffle from my second day onboard and made sure that each morning I have melted butter.

    18. Because of his smile and attention to detail while working almost in a corner of the Lido; Yus stands out. Yus always presents himself well and handles the ‘throngs’ of adults and children very well; much better than I could ever do. I have watched him handle requests from three people at the same time and it never rattles-his-cage. Thanks, Yus!

    19. D. J. Greg is an absolute hoot! D. J. Greg is always seen with a smile and always keeping all the “Dam Dollar” events moving. Being able to interview and find that exact person with the ability to handle large groups of people, with little to nothing in common, (except for being on the best cruise ship in the world), in somewhat small spaces must be a special task at Holland America. D. J. Greg must have passed his test with flying colors. I not only enjoyed his many “Dam Dollar” events but also the job he got his ship name for; “D.J.!” D.J. Greg was great!

    20. Wow! What a superior Cruise Director Holland America has found in Lizabeth Knight. Lizabeth’s greatest asset is that when she says over the Public Announcement System: “We’ll see you ‘round the ship” she means it! Every single day as I walked the passageways Lizabeth is always somewhere talking to guests onboard the ship making her one of the most informed people at Holland America on what guests want and like. Her selection of entertainment on a very large or small scale was superior and her presentation prior to any large entertainment or after the entertainment was exceptional. She always had a new story to tell of something funny that happened that day onboard the ship or reached into her bag of jokes to start the entertainment off with a laugh.

    Additional; I must state that Lizabeth Knight always told the guests about the Filipino and Indonesian Crew Shows. After nine trips on Holland America I can state for a fact that these shows have not been talked about by all other Cruise Directors before or after the main shows and left the entire event to speak for its self as just a single line in the Daily Program.

    Lizabeth Knight also has another remarkable asset because of her father who was in the United States Air Force where she developed a great empathy for members of the armed forces. I saw this in person during one of the meetings she arranges on the ship that she actually attends herself and stays for the entire event. Lizabeth found it difficult holding back tears when stories were told of great heroism that ended in a loss of life for members of the armed forces.

    She started every Meeting of Vets with a wonderful story about her childhood in the military on different bases and a little funny story that happened to her or her family. Holland America absolutely hired the best Cruise Director in the Fleet with the selection of Lizabeth Knight.

  6. 13 November 2010
    To: Captain Vincent Smit, ms Ryndam VI
    Via: Hotel Manager, Robert Versteeg, ms Ryndam VI _______________

    End of Cruise Notes:

    As the very first item, I want to express my sincere appreciation to you and the entire crew for the outstanding service I received from everyone I have had contact with during this 32 day cruise. Holland America has always selected excellent personnel. My very first cruise was with Holland America 10 years ago on the ms Veendam and after taking a cruise on several other cruise lines, Mrs. B and I always returned to Holland America because we never found any other company with such constant outstanding service. We are looking forward to many more cruises onboard Holland America Line ships.

    People that provided outstanding service:

    1. I wish to extend my personal thanks to Holland America Line for providing religious Services onboard your ships. This is my eleventh cruise with Holland America and I have enjoyed the services on every single cruise. The wide variety of Chaplin’s and denominations selected by Holland America made each service interesting and very enjoyable. With budgets tight and the economy even tighter I understand that this might be one of those positions that might be a little lower on the mandatory, needed or even must-have list!

    2. Tyzar, our Dining Room Steward, is a real gentleman. He always stands by our table to greet both of us and ensures that Mrs. B has her seat pulled out and adjusted for her. He then asks about our day and inquires if there is anything special that we need before he starts dinner service. It should be noted that Mrs. B and I were provided a note about the new three star discount if we used the Pinnacle Grill along with a free meal in the Pinnacle Grill; but we never considered leaving the excellent service provided by Tyzar, Sumerta and Ade in the Rotterdam Dining Room at table 78.

    Additionally, the Holland America employee that has made eating every night in the Rotterdam Dining Room very enjoyable for Mrs. Beall and I is Sumerta. The table service of Sumerta has been excellent and made our evening meal a total pleasure. Sumerta should be watched and marked for advancement by Holland America Line if he continues his outstanding service.

    And a note about trainee Ade. We have watched the dedication and time that Tyzar and Sumerta have spent with Ade this week and I am happy to report to you that Ade has performed flawlessly as he has already gone from just helping Tyzar & Sumerta around their station, to picking up dishes at the table, to keeping our water glasses completely full for the entire meal to providing our tea service after the meal.

    3. My genuine admiration for the job done twice a day by our Stateroom Stewards Khamdan and Made. Both have performed their responsibilities in a constant superior manor and Mrs. B and I look forward to returning to our Stateroom after breakfast and dinner to our spotless Stateroom. I sincerely hope that Khamdan and Made stay with Holland America and work themselves toward advancement. We have not spent a lot of time with Khamdan and Made in conversation because all are usually working in another Stateroom and we never interrupt a HAL employee unless we need something. I understand that you train employees to work around guests without disturbing them but you have exceeded this with Khamdan and Made. All are “spirits” that makes our Stateroom spotless, as I said before, never to be seen doing it.

    When we entered our Stateroom on the first day I handed Khamdan and Made list of requests to change our Stateroom in many ways to make our 14 day cruise more relaxing and to allow more counter space for our computer and personal effects. Every single request was performed by the time we returned from our evening meal. It is always the little things that Holland America does that makes us return over and over again and Khamdan and Made meet the highest standards of Holland America Line.

    4. I want to thank Jhon Wayne, an Asst. Dining Room Steward in the Rotterdam Dining Room for the great job he does as he moves his cart of coffee, tea, hot water & cups between the tables around the Lido. He always addresses me by name and always has a smile. Thanks for refilling my cup daily and the daily smile no matter how early in the morning. And Jhon; where did you get the Ma Ma Lou cart horn?

    His ‘clone’ on the Port side Lido, Sandy, was also superior in his job. He spends time meeting people, providing for their needs and calling many by name. I only wish that I had the ability to remember names as so many of your excellent employees do. Sandy is a great Ambassador for Holland America in making each guest he comes in contact with feel like they are the only one in the entire Dining Room.

    Both Jhon Wayne and Sandy have that personal friendly attitude and Holland America ‘touch of class’ by making everyone they come in contact with feel special!

    5. Rhia at the Front Desk provided superior assistance to me each and every time I requested help. On the first day onboard I gave Rhia a list of items to I needed done to make my stay better and not only were all my requests granted; Rhia gave me a personal phone call 24 hours after I arrived and went through my list with me to ensure that each and every item was performed and at my satisfaction.

    6. Yogi, the Rotterdam Dining Room Door Man on Deck 8 was superior in his greeting of each and every guest, his polite conversation and his willingness to do anything to make the last moments of an outstanding dinner unforgettable. He provided fine service on our cruise and always made us smile when we left his station.

    7. Carlos, the Beverage Attendant in the Explorer’s Lounge is truly remarkable. His command of the English language is excellent and we have had some short talks about where I spend most of my time in the United States. I also know from the way he presents himself, keeps the entire Explorer’s Lounge in perfect ship shape appearance and works under no supervision that you also saw in him his abilities and placed him in this independent job position. Carlos was rotated to a bar, which I do not spend much time in so our nightly talks ended after the first cruise.

    8. Lido (and Rotterdam Dining Room) Steward Luthfi was such a surprised to meet today, 10 days into the cruise. He remembered me from the last ‘in transit’ cruise and remarked about me being in the Lido during most mornings and afternoons. We had a wonderful conversation about his twenty-six years with Holland America and all the places he had been, which were many of the places I have been while in the United States Navy. I asked him to list all the Holland America Ships he had been on and he knew them all; the ones that are no longer with the Holland America Company and all the current ones. We spent a short time talking about ports-of-call and then we spent a small amount of time talking about his home. I would not ask why he has so many years with Holland America and was not promoted to Petty Officer because there might be something in the past he would feel bad about telling me. But the bottom line is that if I had an employee with almost three decades of service with a company I ran, that performed well enough to be rehired 26 times, I would want him to have something on his badge or clothing noting this fine service. How about a jacket, hat or badge on his uniform noting his long service with Holland America? Everyone is not able to be a leader, I know, but the ‘troops’ are what make HAL and if Luthfi is so very good that you have hired him twenty-six times; he must do an very good to excellent job.

    Of course right after I get the note on Steward Luthfi included in this report I meet Lido and bottom deck Rotterdam Dining Steward Suminarsa with his 35 years serving Holland America. We had a wonderful talk and he really made me feel like I was just starting out with Holland America and I really never went to many ports with the United States Navy after I asked him where he had visited during his 35 years of service. What a warm hearted employee you have with Steward Suminarsa.

    9 Wow! Holland America has a star in its employee with Patrick in the Rotterdam Dining Room. He did the ‘farewell’ to the guests and then the band started playing New York, New York of Frank Sinatra fame and Patrick wondered the entire Dining Room singing to individual guests at their tables and, of course, looking up and down as he sang to the entire Dining Room. If you do not know what you have available to you yet you should give Patrick a second look. This Steward could be the next Piano Man Stryker that you want to send on all your world cruises to entertain the Dining Room at each segment of the World Cruise.

    10. Thank you Noel in the Explorer’s coffee bar. Every time you see me you say “Hi” and wish me a good day. Thank you for your daily smile.

    11. Having the string Quartet that plays in the Explorer’s Lounge, play with the Hal Cats at night in the Showroom at Sea was superior thinking. The music was just wonderful.

    12. I wish to thank the maintenance department for the repairs on the eight items that did not work so well when took stateroom 420 during the two weeks. Each and every item was repaired the day I reported it by some unknown person while we were away from our cabin so I cannot provide names, as I should. I do not like to be the one reporting door hinges missing screws or banging doors that need hydraulic ram adjustments but the problem is there and it needs fixing.

    13. Lifestylist Clare did a super job in handling all the people that showed up for games while in port or at sea. She never forgot the name of my wife or myself after the first meeting. Wow! What memory.

    14. You need to know about the Tour Guide Dionico who picked us up in the bus in Costa Maya, Mexico (along with the bus driver) and took us to see the Chacchoben Mayan Ruins. This individual, as it turns out, studied the Mayans and he took a job with his travel company so he could tell the complete story to visiting guests. He brought pictures, props, maps and collected items (reproductions) from Mayan history and spent the entire hour trip in the bus taking us back thru time so when we reached Chacchoben we all had an idea of what life was like and he could spend the time, in detail, with more pictures, prints and maps; of the building of the temples and why building faced the directions they did and so very much more. Dionico should be on a Holland America Ship where a real expert could do a lecture on history. You will not believe his knowledge.

    15. My thanks to Ikram for his daily service of coffee and hot water for my tea in the Lido; he always has a smile for me and always asks how I’m feeling and if he can get me anything else to make my meal and time in the Lido better. Your super Ikram!

    16. As a final note I wish to thank Koko for being right there each and every morning when I exit the elevator. Koko delivered my daily newspaper each morning, gave me a broad smile and always provided his wonderful greeting. Thanks Koko!

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