New “Alaska Up Close” programming and sustainable seafood certification highlight anniversary season
Seattle, Wash., Oct. 7, 2022 —Following a full season of 107 cruises and Cruisetours aboard six ships, Holland America Line set sail from Alaska for the last time this year with Eurodam and Koningsdam completing a final port visit at Ketchikan yesterday, Thursday, Oct. 6, before ending at Seattle, Washington, and Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, respectively on Saturday.
“As this successful season winds down, we’re pleased to see growing interest in Alaska 2023,” said Gus Antorcha, president, Holland America Line. “Alaska is a bucket-list destination and people are excited to travel more. We’re seeing bookings well above levels from similar periods in the seasons prior to the industry pause.”
The 2022 Alaska season was Holland America Line’s milestone 75th Anniversary exploring the Great Land, and the cruise line celebrated with a “Love Letters to Alaska” contest, new “Alaska Up Close” shipboard programming, a “We Love Alaska” marketing campaign, and two new partnerships that celebrate the brand’s commitment to serving sustainable Alaska seafood.
“Holland America Line’s 75th Anniversary in Alaska got off to an incredible start with Koningsdam as the first ship back in Canada in more than two years, and we kept building momentum with new immersive programming, partnerships that focused sustainability and more,” added Antorcha. “No other cruise line can deliver Alaska like Holland America Line, and this season we focused all of our expertise and passion on giving guests a memorable Alaska experience that touched all elements of their vacation, from enrichment to culinary to shoreside tours.”
Koningsdam First Ship to Resume Cruising in Canada
At the start of the season on April 8, Koningsdam became the first cruise ship to return to Canada in over two years with a call at Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. The ship’s call marked 905 days since a cruise ship has visited the port, and it also was a maiden call for the ship. The next day Koningsdam arrived at Vancouver for the start of its Alaska season.
‘Alaska Up Close’ Immerses Guests in the Local Culture
Holland America Line launched its “Alaska Up Close” program that deeply immerses guests on Alaska cruises in the local culture with authentic onboard programming, cruise activities and award-winning shore excursions. The exclusive experiences are delivered through experts leading workshops and lectures from those who know Alaska best, EXC Talks exploring the stories of real Alaskans, tours highlighting the best of each destination, and fine dining events showcasing the culinary traditions of the region.
Partnership with Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute
Holland America Line partnered with Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) to highlight the line’s leadership and commitment to sustainably sourced local seafood. The first formal partnership of its kind between ASMI, the state of Alaska and Alaska’s fishing industry, and a major cruise line highlights Holland America Line’s use of Alaska seafood exclusively on all six ships serving the Great Land.
To celebrate, Holland America Line introduced three new seafood dishes created by Culinary Council Member Ethan Stowell: a fried Alaska cod sandwich, Alaskan salmon chop and roasted fennel crusted Alaska halibut. This is in addition to several Alaska seafood dishes that are already on menus throughout the ships. On any Alaska cruise, the line serves more than: 2,000 pounds of Alaska Salmon; 1,000 pounds of Alaska cod; 800 pounds of Alaska halibut; 500 pounds of Alaska rockfish; and so much more.
Certified by Responsible Fisheries Management
Holland America Line was awarded Responsible Fisheries Management (RFM) certification — making it the first cruise line to achieve this distinguished credential by serving only fresh, certified sustainable and traceable wild Alaska seafood. RFM certified all six of the cruise line’s ships that sail to Alaska following an independent audit. RFM is a third-party certification program for wild-capture fisheries and is aligned with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries
Fans Profess Passion for Alaska in ‘Love Letters to Alaska’ Contest
On Valentine’s Day 2022 Holland America Line launched a “Love Letters to Alaska” contest in celebration on the 75th Anniversary. More than 40,000 hopefuls submitted a letter professing their love for Alaska or why they would like to visit. Selected as the best of the best by a panel of judges who have a connection to Alaska, Washington state or the cruise line, Deborah Thelwell from Phoenix, Arizona, was named the grand prize winner of a seven-day Holland America Line Alaska cruise for two in a Neptune Suite.
‘We Love Alaska’ Campaign
With 75 years of Alaska exploration, Holland America Line wanted to show the locals its devotion to the region by having all six Alaska ships proudly display a new “We Love Alaska” logo below the Bridge. Holland America Line encouraged guests to snap a photo of the ship with the logo and post to social media.
2023 Alaska Season
From April through September 2023, guests can explore Alaska on 121 cruises aboard six Holland America Line ships. In addition to seven-day itineraries, Holland America Line is bringing back the popular 14-day “Great Alaska Explorer” cruise for two departures. For explorers who want to travel farther into the Great Land, 16 different Cruisetours combine a three-, four- or seven-day Alaska cruise with an inland exploration of Denali National Park. Holland America Line is the only cruise line that extends land tours up to the unspoiled reaches of Canada’s Yukon Territory.