Ever since I moved to the Netherlands, my Mum has been planning to come down here for a visit. Little did we know that it would take almost two years before she actually did so. She eventually came over this past summer and was here for just under a week.
Together, we explored parts of the country that even I hadn't seen yet. I'd assumed that we would book a hotel here in The Hague for the duration of her stay - which we did - but she also wanted to experience something different. So, we decided to spend a night on the SS Rotterdam.
The SS Rotterdam is a retired ship located at the Rijnhaven port in the city of Rotterdam. It sailed for 41 years until its retirement in 2000 and then was converted into a hotel and museum in 2010. It's now also used as a venue for many events such as weddings, boat parties, and conferences; and is also a nice place to enjoy a swim and have a meal or a drink with friends.
When my mum first suggested to me that we stay at the SS Rotterdam, I was a bit reluctant. It's quite different from the places we've stayed at before and I thought it was a bit risky to book something that we were unsure of - in case we ended up not liking it. But I'm glad she talked me around to trying it out because it ended up being one of the best holidays we've been on yet! 😃
The cruise ship is colossal! 😮
We tried to tour the whole thing at least twice during our stay and got lost each time. Sometimes it even felt like we were walking through a maze! There's a double staircase on some of the decks, with each staircase leading to a different part of the ship. In some cases, we even went into one room through one door and ended up in another room as we were trying to find our way out of the first one.
However, the staff were friendly and helpful and were always happy to show us the way back to the deck - where the room we were staying in is located.
During our stay at the SS Rotterdam, we had dinner at one of the ship's restaurants (Lido Bar & Restaurant) once, but we had most of our meals in the Rotterdam city centre which we explored during the day. The easiest way to get to the centre of the city (where all the magic happens, so to speak) is by a water taxi - and it's a real thrill to ride in! It reminded us a lot of our time in Italy - Venice, specifically - and brought a bit of excitement to our rather calm holiday aboard the ship.
Below is a vlog giving you a quick tour of the SS Rotterdam, as well as a few pictures I took of Rotterdam.
But before you get to that, here are my *5 Tips for planning a Stay Aboard the SS Rotterdam:
1. Consider staying here towards the beginning of summer. We booked our stay for the end of July and the weather was horrible. It rained throughout and we didn't get the opportunity to enjoy the outdoor amenities.
2. If you can afford to, it's worth holidaying at the SS Rotterdam for at least two nights. We were only there for one night and regretted having not booked a longer stay.
3. Carry your swimsuits. There's a swimming pool on the deck of the cruise ship; and if the weather's good, you might as well make the most of it.
4. Although we enjoyed the meal we had at one of the restaurants on the ship, it was rather expensive. A more affordable option would be to dine in the city. There are numerous restaurants there to choose from and you can always get a boat taxi back to the ship afterwards.
5. Lastly, take some time out to tour the ship. It can get overwhelming as it is so big, but it's definitely worth doing so, regardless.😉😊