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With Reuben Goossens

Maritime Historian, Cruise‘n’Ship Reviewer & Author


Please Note: All ssMaritime and my other related ssMaritime sites are 100% non-commercial and privately owned sites. Be assured that I am NOT associated with any cruise or shipping companies or travel/cruise agencies or any other organisations! The author has been in the passenger shipping industry since May 1960 and is now semi-retired, but continues to write articles on classic liners and cruise ships in order to better to inform cruise and ship enthusiasts for their pleasure!



Please Note: Photographs, postcards and images on this page are from the author’s collection unless stated otherwise!

Part Five

SS Rotterdam Brochures - Page Two

Please Note:

If you arrived at this page via a search engine: Please read Part One first!

PLEASE NOTE: This Eight Page SS Rotterdam V Feature has been completely updated as well had five brand new pages added. However, I wish to announce that this feature is in reality a new work is also my very last ever work that I will do for ssmaritime or for any other of my sites. I have done so for reasons that may be well known to many of my regular readers. Therefore, I have now fully retired and will sit back and I am joyful with what I have achieved and I trust that you will enjoy reading the well over 620 classic liners, and other ships that are online! Thank you for your wonderful support I has been greatly appreciated!

Best wishes,

Reuben Goossens.

Maritime Historian & Founder of the “Save The Classic Liners Campaign.

And the “Save The SS Rotterdam Campaign.”



Please note that brochures on this page are owned and copyright © Reuben Goossens - and they must not be copied for any purpose whatsoever, be it for personal reasons or to be placed online, etc, unless written permission has been sought! Photographs are either from the author’s private collection or as noted.

Introduction to the Brochure:

The brochure featured below is the first edition of a brand new production and one of the most beautiful and certainly a costly publication to date. It was printed in January 1965 in the Netherlands by Holland America Line (HAL), and it is entitled “The Big Three.” Although many of the photographs are in fact on the SS Rotterdam, yet the brochure also features the great 36,667 GRT (Gross Registered ton) SS Nieuw Amsterdam completed in 1938, and the 24,294 GRT SS Statendam completed in 1956 as well as the occasional venue and some outdoor views are included.

As we think of the title, “The Big Three” today it may seem like a joke, for we are really speaking about three ships that are from just 24,366 GRT (Gross Registered Tons), with the largest being the HAL fleet flagship, the SS Rotterdam at 38,675 GRT. Back in those days these ships were considered as being large ships! However today cruise ships are so very different for now they no longer have their hull laid down and are fully built up piece by piece, but instead they are built on an assembly line of sorts and everything is prebuilt in sectors and then hoisted in place and bolted together. Today they build those massive Apartment (Condo) style cruise ships that can be anything up to 120,000 GRT and there are some even much bigger with up to 6,000 passengers, which is simply mad!


To be completely honest these new style of vessels are hideous to say the least, for most are more like huge theme parks and no longer resemble the days of the great ocean liners, not even those great liners that became fulltime cruise ships, for today they have lost the original ideal of what a vacation at sea is supposed to be like. Tragically these days it is more of a grubby money making concern for the ship owners, like Carnival Cruises and Royal Caribbean International, etc, as onboard their ships there are countless optional restaurants and so many packages for their Spa’s, Gym, Photoshop, Wine, and other packages, birthday, anniversary, and the list will go on and they will hound you until you go mad! In the day of the SS Rotterdam and still with today’s modern Holland America Line, although they may have several optional Restaurants, such as the famed “Hatted Chef” luxurious Pinnacle Grill and the Italian Canaletto’s, but you will never be approached to book, for the Pinnacle Grill is usually booked out early in the cruise due to its amazing popularity as it only costs US$29.00, for a stunning meal served on “BVLGARI” plates and with the finest Riedel crystal glasses and high quality cutlery. This same dining event on land would cost at least over 180.00 and then you would hope that the service would be as spectacular as it is on Holland America Line! But all dining on HAL is simply an event regardless the Restaurant!

SS Rotterdam’s magnificent Tourist Class Dining Room in all its grandeur



A view of a modern HAL Dining Room on the ms Oosterdam, but it continues tradition!

Besides the front and back cover this publication has an amazing 22 interior pages and considering that this booklet is printed on a high quality smooth thick firm paper, much like a quality business card, it certainly would have been a costly production!

As you open the front cover there is an introduction Page 1 then opposite on Page 2 is the historic sailing vessel of the 1600s the Halve Maen with a blueprint of the SS Rotterdam from the builders behind it in the middle. Then behind Page 1 there is a three-page fold away that has four sides with various views, these have as pages numbered 3 to 6, with three of these pages featuring large images of “The Big Three Ships!”

The rest of the booklet has a vast variety of photographs featuring all areas of the Rotterdam and the other two ships, etc, but towards the last pages there is an “Activities” page dated Friday May 8, 1964. Two pages later there are three photographs of 1. the much loved twins the mostly Tourist Class, with a very small First Class on Boat Deck, the 15,024 ton SS Maasdam and the 15,015 SS Ryndam. Also shown is one of three popular 60 passenger-cargo ships, the 11,366-ton SS Dinteldyk as well as the 5,635-ton MS Kloosterdyk one a number of passenger cargo ships that carry around 12 passengers.

There is no doubt that this brochure is one of the most desirable ship lover’s collector’s items, especially the first edition which is very rare indeed! I was very fortunate as I have been dealing what I believe the very best maritime memorabilia dealers in the world and I have been buying pieces from them for many years now and I recommend this wonderful concern!

Nautiques is owned and operated by Mr. Don Leavitt and he has well over 3,000 items of ocean liner and steamship antiques and collectibles spanning the last century available at any one time! You can browse through the site that has hundreds of shipping lines listed from around the world or visit the main page at … If you are looking for a rare item then contact Don Leavitt direct at;

Please Note: The above is not a paid advertisement but a personal recommendation of having given me such superb service and so many excellent items over many years and best still at excellent prices! Go and check the site and see the great value of the huge range of wonderful classic brochures, deck plans, or if you are seeking, there is also fine porcelain or dishes and silverware etc., available!

1st.Release Brochure - January1965

The envelope in which the brochure was posted in to Mr. William H. at the University at Virginia, USA

(Surname on the envelope and part of the address was removed for privacy reasons)


Front Cover - Featuring “The Big Three” Ships, sadly the colour on the cover of this edition was not great


Page One - The opening page, being an introduction to HAL featuring leisure


Page Two - Facing the Introduction page is this view of the famed Halve Maen and a blue Print of the SS Rotterdam


Page Three - The first of the inside attached three fold pages


Page Four - SS Rotterdam the HAL flagship


Page Five - The most beautiful Trans-Atlantic Liner ever constructed, the great SS Nieuw Amsterdam

This is according to most Naval Architects and some of the world’s most famous Maritime Historians


Page Six - the delightful SS Statendam



Pages Seven & Eight: Featuring technology and navigation and Fleet Commodore Captain Bouman aboard the SS Rotterdam





Pages Nine & Ten: The traditional funnel of the SS Statendam and scenes of passengers going on their Atlantic voyage





Above & below: Pages 11 & 12 show passengers enjoying a host of activities, including the 601 seat Cinema and an indoor pool





Above & below: Pages 13 & 14 features a Suite and the superb Dining Room on the SS Rotterdam

Amazingly the Dining Rooms in both classes were almost identical!





Pages 15 & 16: Revealing further onboard activities, including for the young ones! Note those stately funnels of the SS Nieuw Amsterdam!





Pages 17 & 18: Revealing the many services and facilities onboard and a large view of the ever popular Ocean bar





Pages 19 & 20: A Deck view and a May 8, 1964 SS Rotterdam “Activities” Program





Pages 21 & 22: A romantic sundown deck view and a list of other Holland America Ships





The Back Cover: Featuring a photo of HAL’s New York’s Pier 40 with the SS Rotterdam,

SS Statendam and two of their passenger-cargo ships


Souvenir Farewell Diner Menu Platter



Above & below:

A beautiful Delft Blue Farewell Dinner Menu Plate from the SS Rotterdam World Voyage Jan to Apr 1964

As you will see from the back of the plate, it is a genuine “Royal Goedewaagen Delft Blue” plate, thus quite costly items!




This is the cover of a 1960 One Class cruise plan

The interior plan is too large to scan I am afraid, but I do have a SS Rotterdam Deck Plan feature online



SS Rotterdam INDEX:

Part One:             Construction & her Maiden Voyage Sep 3, 1959.

Part Two:            Her Grey Hull days - Sep 1959 to 1971.

Part Three:          Her HAL days & Premier Cruises days - 1972 to 2000.

Part Four:            Brochure - Page One.

Part Five:            Brochure - Page Two - This Page.

Part Six:              Deck Plans, 1959 First & Tourist & a later One Class Cruise Plan.

Part Seven:         SS Rotterdam 1959 Specifications & Engine Room photos by Klaas Krijnen.

Part Eight:           Saving the Rotterdam 1995/97 - 2009.


Visit our ssMaritime Main INDEX

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Where the ships of the past make history & the 1914 built MV Doulos Story


Also visit my

Save The Classic Liners Campaign


Please Note: ssmaritime and associated sites are 100% non-commercial and the author seeks no funding or favours of any shape or form, never have and never will!

Photographs on ssmaritime and associate pages are by the author or from the author’s private collection. In addition there are some images that have been provided by Shipping Companies and private photographers or collectors. Credit is given to all contributors. However, there are some photographs provided to me without details regarding the photographer/owner concerned. I hereby invite if owners of these images would be so kind to make them-selves known to me (my email address may be found on only), in order that due credit may be given.

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