SEATTLE – Holland America Line, a leader in defining the premium cruise experience, recently was awarded nine 2010 Readers’ Choice Awards including Best Eco-Friendly Cruise Line and Best Private Island for Half Moon Cay, its exclusive paradise in the Bahamas, from Porthole Cruise Magazine, one of the world’s leading cruise travel publications.
Porthole Cruise Magazine’s Readers Choice Awards are determined by thousands of the publication’s readers who vote on their favorite cruise lines in a wide variety of categories including Best Private Island, Best Shore Excursions and Best Itineraries.
“Porthole Cruise Magazine is the top source of cruise and destination content for novice and veteran travelers alike,” said Bill Panoff, publisher and editor-in-chief of the magazine. “Our readers appreciate the quality and overall cruise experience that a premium line such as Holland America Line delivers every day.”
Holland America Line’s 2010 “Readers Choice Awards” include:
Best Eco-Friendly Cruise Line
Best Private Island (Half Moon Cay)
Best Alaska Itineraries
Best Northern Europe Itineraries
Best Central/ South America Itineraries (including Panama Canal)
Best Canada/ New England Itineraries
Best Shore Excursions
Best Medical Facilities
Best Overall Facilities for Physically Challenged Passengers
“Holland America Line is delighted to win these prestigious awards from the readers of Porthole Cruise Magazine,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “We are proud to be recognized for our in-depth cruise itineraries, enriching shore excursions, environmental commitment and an unforgettable premium cruise experience on board.”
Half Moon Cay Receives Best Private Island Honors
For the past 10 years, Porthole Cruise Magazine has awarded Half Moon Cay its Best Private Island Award. Half Moon Cay features 15 beach front air-conditioned cabanas, a natural 700-acre lagoon and endless fun-filled excursions for nature lovers and adventurous travelers alike. Here guests can enjoy fascinating excursions on the island including horseback riding by land and sea, snorkeling and swimming with stingrays in a secluded cove, biking tours, the AquaTrax watercraft adventure tour and parasailing.
Top Itineraries Garner Top Honors
Holland America maintained its leading position as the cruise line with the Best Alaskan Itineraries. In 2011, the line will sail seven ships on 13 unique itineraries, highlighted by scenic cruising in Glacier Bay National Park, Hubbard Glacier in Yakutat Bay and Alaska’s renowned Inside Passage.
Holland America Line also received top honors from Porthole Cruise Magazine recognizing its Canada/ New England voyages on msMaasdam and msEurodam that explore the historic seaports and stunning fall foliage of the region. The line’s 2011 itineraries range from seven to 13 days and will feature 24 sailings between May and October.
This year marks the first time the line has earned a Readers Choice Award for its acclaimed Northern Europe itineraries aboard seven of the line’s 15 ships, including the newest addition to the fleet, msNieuw Amsterdam. Port calls featured in the Northern Europe sailings include Copenhagen, Denmark; St. Petersburg, Russia; Helsinki, Finland; Bergen, Norway; and Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Rounding out the honors garnered for top itineraries are the line’s Central/South American voyages, a series of sailings that explore the region’s natural beauty, indigenous cultures, full transits of the Panama Canal and scenic cruising on the mighty Amazon River.
Eco-Friendly Initiatives, State-of-the-Art Medical Facilities
Holland America Line won the Most Eco-Friendly Cruise Line award for its commitment to responsible environmental practices for a range of comprehensive and innovative fleet-wide programs. The programs emphasize waste reduction and recycling, use of cleaner-burning propulsion technology and cutting-edge cleaning solutions. Holland America Line also has a history of embracing new environmental technologies such as shore power while ships are in port and becoming the first cruise line to install state-of-the-art, level-four water treatment systems and implement a whale strike avoidance program.
Completing the awards, Holland America Line received recognition for its accessibility and medical facilities. Holland America Line ships accommodate guests with a variety of special needs including those requiring wheelchairs, scooters or service animals, those who have sight or hearing impairments, and those using oxygen. Each ship is equipped with a medical center carrying much of the standard equipment found in North American hospital emergency departments.