Sunday, January 23, 2011

Holland America - A 5 Star GF Vacation!!

I love food and LOVE cruising. Since my diagnosis with Celiac disease, I really didn't think cruises would ever be as pleasurable with my gluten issues. I was planning a much needed vacation and was THRILLED when I came across Holland America, whose tag line is "A Siganture of Excellence."

Holland America notes on its website its ability to accommodate vegetarian, kosher, gluten free, diabetic, and any other dietary need. The website alone wasn't enough to convince me - so I called. I was pleasantly surprised - it was true! Holland America gets Kinnickinnick products delivered to the ship, and EVEN has a GF special order form where you can order bread, pancakes, muffins, pizza, pasta and MORE prior to boarding the ship. Holland America requests this form one month prior to boarding, and does its best to make sure the items are ordered and on the ship for you.

Well... you fill out the paper and hope for the best when you get on the ship, but, you really don't have to worry on Holland America. They have the BEST service I have had on a cruise ship (reminding me of how cruise ship service was 15+ years ago) - service with a HUGE smile. The accommodations were unreal - the service was amazing, and MOST importantly, the GF meals were AMAZING.

Below, I have some snapshots of some wonderful GF accommodations made for me. P.S. - I was told there were 12 other Celiacs on the ship being accommodated, numerous vegetarian and kosher requests as well.  I was NEVER sick on the ship. The ENTIRE staff dealing with food was EXTREMELY educated on gluten free foods, even the staff on the buffet line on the pool deck knew exactly which foods were GF - and were always 100% correct!

GF Bread - I had multigrain, pumpernickel bread, english muffins, and even chocolate chip pancakes.  Best of all, room service even delivered it to my room in the mornings!

GF Potato and Leek Soup, Yum!
Lamb Chops!  (I had lamb chops 3/7 nights, YES Holland America does feed you quite well)!
Sorbet was ALWAYS a desert option
Our main server for dinner was Beni, he was plain and simply, THE BEST! This was the special dessert HE MADE HIMSELF for me nightly!!! Yes, I did tell him I loved him, on numerous occasions - in front of my boyfriend! =) Can you blame me??
The BEST accommodation yet!
Holland America gets a GOLDEN THUMBS UP!!  Thank you so much for a wonderful, healthy, happy, gluten free vacation!


  1. Sounds wonderful! I've just booked my first cruise with Celebrity (next week - can't wait!). I've heard that they are also good at gluten free food, so hoping for some good food with no cross contamination :-)

  2. Sounds fantastic! Thanks so much for posting the details as we are considering switching from Princess (they do pretty well with GF food) to Holland America.