Holland America’s Music Walk Changes the Game for Cruise Ship Night Life

Holland America’s newest ship, Nieuw Statendam, debuted in late 2018 as the second in the fleet’s Pinnacle Class, joining sister Koningsdam. 

Nieuw Statendam carries up to 2,666 passengers sailing from Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. And these cruisers get to enjoy a spacious ship that offers elegant spaces filled with whimsical art work, as well as world-class dining experiences in eateries like Rudi’s Sel de Mer, Canaletto and Tamarind. 

This new cruise ship also refines Holland America’s revolutionary Music Walk concept, which first was fully realized on Koningsdam. Music Walk offers a nightly entertainment experience unlike anything else in the cruise industry. 

While cruise ships typically offer live music acts in various lounges scattered throughout the ship, Music Walk offers a highly coordinated experience along a long stretch of Deck 2 on Nieuw Statendam and Koningsdam.  

Cruisers get their fill onboard nightly to a range of music stylings that suit all tastes. Most cruisers we have sailed with love all the genres and make sure to get an ample taste of all of them each night 

B.B. King’s Blues Club is the place to enjoy awesome shows. The band belts out rhythm and blues classics, as well as other popular songs that you can easily bop to in the comfort of your chair or lounger. However, you will inevitably be drawn to the dance floor as you soak in the vibrant atmosphere.  

This venue is also enjoyed from seats that wrap around the atrium style opening that rises to the third deck. The acoustics and environment are fabulous for these performances. The space is used for B.B. King’s and Lincoln Center Stage, with a quick change of the stage’s decor to accommodate either program. 

Lincoln Center Stage on Nieuw Statendam
Lincoln Center Stage is your place to catch performances of classical music.

Lincoln Center Stage on Nieuw Statendam features a string-and-piano quintet playing classics – or classic takes on modern hits.  

Rolling Stone Rock Room is located a few strides away from here, and the music does not clash because the Music Walk design incorporates a set of doors in between that keep the sounds separated. 

The Rock Room house band jams out to covers of rock-and-roll favorites in a dark and moody setting that evokes the feel of a hip night club. It also offers a small dance floor.  

Billboard Onboard on Nieuw Statendam
The dueling pianists draw a big crowd for fun sing-a-longs.
Billboard Onboard on Nieuw Statendam
All of the music attractions are located right off a main corridor on Deck 2.

Billboard Onboard is packed nightly as cruisers fill in around the dueling pianos honoring requests and playing a lineup of energetic sing-a-long hits. The husband-and-wife piano-playing duo on our sailing was delightful 

All of the venues are wide open to the main corridor, so passengers can hear the music and easily slide into the action, whether taking a seat or hitting the dance floor. 

Rolling Stone Rock Room on Nieuw Statendam
The Rolling Stone Rock Room Band plays fantastic renditions of classic hits.

Rolling Stone Rock Room on Nieuw Statendam

B.B. King’s Blues Club and Rolling Stone Rock Room are usually packed till late with cruisers enjoying the night life. Drinks service is easily available throughout, with staffers roaming the clubs. You can also pull up a stool at the lively bars located at Billboard Onboard and Rolling Stone Rock Room. Whiskey aficionados are wowed by the selection of more than 100 whiskey varieties at Notes, a small bar and impressive wall of whiskey bottles that sit tucked into the Music Walk next to Billboard Onboard. 

Cruise Compete

Several other ships in the Holland America Line fleet give a flavor of Music Walk, with two or three of the music venues onboard. It all comes together on the newest ships, though, as Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam offer all four spots.  

The result gives cruisers on these ships the chance to enjoy a kind of music fest onboard each night. It creates a night feel of community and camaraderie as the area fills up each night as passengers either plan out an evening of musical entertainment or just wander the Music Walk and follow their ears to find the rhythm and style that suits their moods. 

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John Roberts
John Robertshttp://www.inthelooptravel.com/
John Roberts is a freelance travel writer and operator of InTheLoopTravel.com. His writing aims to help travelers find the best ways to explore destinations in a fun, fit and adventurous way.

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