ms Noordam to Debut With Holland America Line’s Signature of Excellence Enhancements in Place

SEATTLE, July 11 /PRNewswire/ — It may be the fourth ship in the Vista Class series but when the ms Noordam debuts in February 2006 it will be the first of its kind. The 1,848-passenger ms Noordam will showcase all the service and product enhancements of the line’s $225 million Signature of Excellence initiative, including the addition of an Explorations Cafe — a cyber-coffee house powered by The New York Times — expanded Pinnacle Grill, and a new Pinnacle Bar.

“We are delighted to introduce the ms Noordam as our first new ship fully equipped with all Signature of Excellence enhancements when she sails from the shipyard early next year,” said Rick Meadows, CTC, senior vice president, marketing and sales. “She’ll head into service on our newest Caribbean itinerary providing guests sailing from New York City with the top premium experience in the cruise industry.”

Other major Signature of Excellence attributes will include the innovative Culinary Arts Center presented by Food & Wine Magazine; an expanded Greenhouse Spa and Salon; and upgraded youth facility that includes the Teens-only Loft. Also new — and unique to the Noordam — will be the Pinnacle Wine Bar, offering a wide selection of worldwide wines.

Special Signature of Excellence amenities add to the welcoming ambience of the Noordam’s 924 staterooms — 87 percent of which offer ocean views. All feature plush Euro-top Mariner Beds, deluxe waffle/terry cloth robes, flat panel TVs, dvd players, magnifying make-up mirrors with halo lighting, massage shower heads, professional hair dryers, and complimentary fruit basket.

Holland America Line’s new One-Touch Concierge Service will also be in full operation when the Noordam arrives. All guests in verandah suites will enjoy personalized phone concierge service to assist with special requests, spa or dinner reservations, room service and other needs. Offering similar assistance, food, and a place to relax and work, the Neptune Lounge also will continue to offer concierge service to deluxe verandah suite guests with One-Touch Concierge Service available when the Neptune Lounge is closed.

New Culinary Arts Program in Partnership with Food & Wine Magazine

Among the most progressive of the Signature of Excellence enhancements will be Holland America Line’s recently announced Culinary Arts Center presented by Food & Wine Magazine. More than 60 celebrated chefs and culinary experts per year will provide cooking demonstrations and intimate classes in the new state-of-the-art onboard show kitchen.

Four acclaimed culinary experts are confirmed during the Noordam’s inaugural year: Johnny Iuzzini, executive pastry chef of New York’s renowned Jean Georges restaurant (April 5, 10-day Caribbean); John Howie, owner/chef of Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar in Seattle (July 30, 10-day Europe); Charles Dale, founder of Aspen’s Range and Rustique restaurants (Sept. 18, 10-day Europe); and Anthony Giglio, wine author and sommelier (Nov. 25, 11-day Caribbean).

The Culinary Arts Center with its state-of-the-art show kitchen will serve as a hub for the interactive gourmet experiences. Guests in the audience can get an up-close view of the cooking action on large, plasma screens, while other guests also may watch these events from the comfort of their staterooms. Each Culinary Arts Center will have portable cooking stations where groups of up to 16 guests can participate in hands-on classes.

New Explorations Cafe powered by The New York Times

The new Explorations Cafe — powered by The New York Times offers guests an opportunity to sip coffee, browse through one of the most extensive libraries at sea, enjoy a wide selection of music at one of several listening stations or surf the Internet. They also can work The New York Times’ crossword puzzles and access “TimesTalks” events and the website.

Youth Program Expands Club HAL(R), Adds The Loft for Teens

Younger cruisers now enjoy supervised, age-specific activities in a more comprehensive Youth Program and expanded Club HAL(R) designed for kids ages 3 to 12. The younger ones can enjoy creative activities at art tables, watch big-screen television and play on a fun slide. Older kids, ages 8 to 12, have an area featuring arcade games, air hockey, foosball, Karaoke, Internet access and Sony Playstations. Teens, ages 13-18, can enjoy their own special place to relax and socialize called The Loft, teens-only lounge designed to resemble a New York artist’s loft.

Gourmet Dining and the Greenhouse Spa & Salon

Dining choices aboard the Noordam will include the expanded Pinnacle Grill restaurant featuring Pacific Northwest fare and wines, and four dining times in the main dining room. Guests can also enjoy enhanced Lido dining and complimentary, 24-hour room service menu.

The Greenhouse Spa and Salon will provide guests with a wide range of exotic skin, body and hair treatments. The spa features new treatment rooms, a thermal suite and hydro-pool, as well as access to a spacious, well-appointed fitness facility.

Eleven Caribbean sailings will depart New York, beginning with the maiden voyage of the Noordam on February 22, 2006. Fares start at US $1,199 per person, double occupancy.

About Holland America Line [a division of Carnival Corporation and plc (NYSE:CCL) (NYSE:and) (NYSE:CUK) ]

The award-winning premium cruise leader’s fleet of 12 ships offers nearly 500 cruises from 27 homeports and excels at providing gracious and attentive service. It’s renowned “Tradition of Excellence” includes Signature of Excellence, a $225 million initiative targeting product and service enhancements in stateroom accommodations, dining, service, enrichment programs and activities, and worldwide itineraries. Six ships are completed with the rest to be finished by the end of 2006. For more information, consult a travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (877-724-5425) or visit

World’s Leading Cruise Lines

The highest-rated premium cruise line in the world, Holland America Line is a member of the exclusive World’s Leading Cruise Lines alliance, which also includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Princess Cruises, Cunard Line, Seabourn Cruise Line, Costa Cruises and Windstar Cruises. Sharing a passion to please each guest and a commitment to quality and value, these lines appeal to a wide range of lifestyles and budgets. The World’s Leading Cruise Lines offer exciting and enriching cruise vacations to the world’s most desirable destinations.

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