Three years after the ss Statendam IV had made her first world voyage in 1958 for the Holland America line the ss Rotterdam V was designated as the successor. The ss Rotterdam has made 29 world voyages. The first of 75 days started February 1, 1960 in New York and is known as “The cruise to four continents”. The last world voyage of 103 days started January 18, 1997 in Los Angeles. “The end of an era ” entered history with the sale of the ship. When the ss Rotterdam docked for the last time in Fort Lauderdale on September 30, 1997, the new ms Rotterdam VI lay ready to make the yearly world voyage. This tradition has been carried on by the ms Amsterdam in 2002 and the ms Prinsendam in 2004. The world voyage tiles have a dimension of 6″x 6″, if not otherwise stated.
In 1993 the first world voyage tiles were introduced and distributed with this special tile, packed in a box. In contrast to the other world voyage tiles made by Royal Goedewaagen since 1995, this tile (4,3″x 4,3″) has been manufactured by World Wide Cerama Card Tile Coaster USA in Hixson, Tennessee.
The 1993 series consists further of 4 tiles (4,3″x 4,3″), commemorating the passage through the Panama Canal and the crossing of 3 oceans. After a break of seven years, due to terrorist attacks and a large reconstruction, the ss Rotterdam started the 26th world voyage from New York, January 3, a 99 day cruise. Considering the size of the tiles and the year of manufacture it seems that this series also has been fabricated by World Wide Cerama Card.
The 1995 series consists of 4 tiles, representing the sailing route of the 27th world voyage of the Rotterdam. The ship did not make a world voyage in 1994 because the new ms Statendam V was choosen instead, for which no tile was issued. The cruise started January 23, 1995 in Los Angeles and ended 86 days later in Fort Lauderdale. Holland America Line introduced some surprises by offering new destinations to “repeaters”. For the first time the schedule included the Yap Islands in Micronesia, the Philippine Island Corregidor, Xiamen in China, Da Nang in Vietnam, Muscat in Oman and Aqaba in Jordan, after which the crossing to New York and Fort Lauderdale followed.
The 1996 series consists of 4 tiles representing the course of the 28th world voyage of the ss Rotterdam. This cruise entailed a route from Los Angeles to among other places: Tahiti, Auckland, Tasmania, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Bali, Hong Kong, Phuket, Bombay, Zanzibar, Capetown, Tristan de Cunha, Rio de Janeiro and Recife to New York. The cruise took 100 days from January 19 to April 26.
The 1997 series consists of 4 tiles representing the course of the 29th and last world voyage in 103 days of the ss Rotterdam. On Januari 18 the ship left Los Angeles via the Hawaii-archipelago, Bora Bora and Tahiti to New Zealand and Australia. The route continued via Sydney and Adelaide to the more frequently travelled: Bali, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Bombay, through the Red Sea and the Suez Canal to Haifa. Via Istanbul, Rome, Gibraltar, Lisboa, the Azores and New York, the Rotterdam finally docked on April 30, 1997 in Florida.
This concluded the End of an Era, which was commemorated by 3 tiles that could be bought on board during te last cruise.
The cruising career of the flagship ss Rotterdam V would be concluded in the 18-day Grand Final Panama Canal Cruise, which was so popular that five times as many passengers could have taken this cruise. On September 12, 1997, the Rotterdam went from Vancouver first to San Francisco; the Mexican destinations Cabo San Lucas and Acapulco had to be omitted due to weather circumstances. The cruise continued via Puerto Caldera (Costa Rica) through the Panama Canal to Curacao and Aruba and thereafter to Fort Lauderdale. When the Rotterdam docked for the last time on September 30, 1997 in Fort Lauderdale, having made 1003 voyages, the new ms Rotterdam VI lay ready to make the yearly world voyage. Also the Amsterdam and the Prinsendam would carry on the tradition in 2002 and 2004 respectively.
The 1998 series consists of 4 tiles representing the course of the 1st 97-day world voyage of the new flagship. The ms Rotterdam VI departed Januari 19 from Los Angeles, arriving on April 26 in New York. This cruise consisted of 30 ports and exotic destinations such as Tuvalu, Madang in Papua New Guinea and Brunei on the island of Borneo.
The 1999 series consists of 4 tiles representing the 2nd world voyage of the Rotterdam. The crossing back did not take place as usual from the northern route via the Azores but from the southern route via Madeira.
The 2000 series consists of 3 tiles representing the 3rd world voyage of the Rotterdam beginning in Fort Lauderdale and ending 96 days later in Los Angeles. The journey began unusually with the passage through the Panama Canal and followed in the direction of South America. The uniqueness of this cruise is that Holland America Line was the first great cruise company to include the 7th continent Antarctica. From Buenos Aires the Atlantic Ocean was crossed towards South Africa and the Indian Ocean in the direction of Singapore. Subsequently the cruise continued to the large cities of South East Asia and via Japan and Hong Kong to Los Angeles.
The 2001 series consists of 3 tiles of the 4th world voyage of the Rotterdam: from Los Angeles via the Bounty-island Pitcairn to Sydney, continuing to, among others, Indonesia, the Philippines, Hong Kong and Vietnam to Singapore and via Bombay through the Suez canal to different places on the Mediterranean Sea, finally via the Azores ending in New York.
In 2002 for the first time the ms Amsterdam was introduced to make a world voyage, commemorated in series of 3 tiles. In comparison to former world voyages 15 new ports of call were included. The Amsterdam made 2 maiden calls: one in Richards Bay (South Africa) and one on the island of St. Helena, a British overseas territory, 2000 miles west of the African coast and mainly known as the last place where Napoleon spent his last years in exile.
The 2nd world voyage of the Amsterdam in 2003 consists of a 108-day cruise to 5 continents, including Antarctica. The Amsterdam left Fort Lauderdale on January 4, visited 38 ports, including Easter Island and the exotic Bounty-island Pitcairn and made maiden calls in Guam and Saipan. The voyage ended on April 22 in Los Angeles. The tile measures 8″x 4″.
The first world voyage of the ms Prinsendam in 2004 is the 39th world voyage made by a ship of Holland America Line. In 108 days from Los Angeles on January 20 to New York by May 7. The series consists of 4 tiles of 4″x 4″, representing the following 4 segments of this journey: Los Angeles-Sydney; Sydney-Singapore; Singapore-Rome and Rome-New York.
The 2005 series consists of 4 tiles representing the sailing route of the 2nd world voyage of the Prinsendam (116 days), leaving from Fort Lauderdale on January 13 and arriving in New York on May 9. The cruise entails 4 segments: Fort Lauderdale-Los Angeles-Sydney; Sydney-Singapore; Singapore-Cape Town and Cape Town-New York.
The 2006 series “Circle of the Sun” consists of 4 tiles, representing the 108-day cruise to 36 destinations, 22 countries and 6 continents. The Prinsendam left Fort Lauderdale on January 5, covered a distance of 30.000 miles and made a maidencall in 9 ports. Segment 3 is missing in my collection; the picture is the design for the tile.
The 2007 series “Dream of Discovery” consists of 4 tiles, representing the 105-day world voyage of the ms Amsterdam. The cruise entails 4 segments: New York-Sydney; Sydney-Singapore; Singapore-Rome and Rome-Fort Lauderdale.
After a break of three years in 2011 the Holland America Line began distributing tiles again. The 6th world voyage of the ms Amsterdam launched a new tradition, the commemorating tile was made in an oval shape (4,7″ x 3,7″). Departing January 5 and sailing roundtrip Fort Lauderdale, the Amsterdam rings in 2011 with a 110-day journey, a port collector’s dream that includes 10 overnight calls, visits to an impressive collection of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and three maiden ports of call.
Here you see the design for the tile. It is not yet present in my collection.
The tile of the 7th world voyage of the Amsterdam in 2012 (103 days) shows the sailing route beginning and ending in Fort Lauderdale. First to the east of South America and Antarctica, crossing the Pacific Ocean to Australia and Asia. Subsequently through the Suez Canal to Europe and then the crossing to Fort Lauderdale.
The tile of the 8th world voyage of the Amsterdam in 2013 (118 days) shows the sailing route again beginning and ending in Fort Lauderdale. However, this time the route followed through the Panama Canal to the west of South America, via the Pacific Ocean to Australia and Asia, and subsequently via the Cape crossing the Atlantic Ocean back to Fort Lauderdale.
The tile of the 9th world voyage of the Amsterdam in 2014 (113 days) shows the sailing route beginning and ending in Fort Lauderdale. It is the 55th Grand World Voyage for the company. The route is almost the same as the 2013 itinerary.
The tile of het 10th world voyage of the Amsterdam in 2015 (114 days) depicts the sailing route beginning and ending in Fort Lauderdale. The Amsterdam visits 45 ports in 25 countries and 6 continents. This time the ship followed the western route to Australia via 6 Polynesian islands, with overnight calls in Syndey, Bombay and Dubai.