Upper Promenade Deck

4 Public rooms on the Upper Promenade Deck

Auditorium / Theatre (balcony):
Design: C. Elffers, Rotterdam
Execution: De Nijs Meubelfabriek, Rotterdam.

The balcony, intended for the first class, has a capacity of 163 persons and is connected with the orchestra, or main auditorium, by two sets of stairs. (See the section on the Promenade Deck for further information).

auditjwkoeneThe Theater in 1999  picture Jan-Willem Koene


The Theater now  picture Jan-Willem Koene

Ambassador Lounge:
Design: J.A. van Tienhoven, Amsterdam
Execution: De Nijs Meubelfabriek NV, Rotterdam

The heart of this room is the star-shaped dance floor, carried out in jarra wood, teak peroba, and ash, which is surrounded by concentric rings of furniture. The room is divided into sections by screens oriented toward the center of the room. These screens are made of circles of glass which are partially silvered and edged in bronze- and gold- anodized aluminum and set in rosewood frames. Identical glass is used in the exterior walls.

ambassador1Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

The bar, which forms one of the sections, affords its patrons a view of the dance floor. There is a raised stage for performers. A circular, dropped area of the ceiling spans the dance floor. It is equipped with fluorescent lights and carried out in panels covered alternately with yellow and red Vynide. The woodwork is of rosewood, while the window frames are of teak. The two wall decorations “Het Water” (The Water) and “De Lucht” (The Sky) are by the painter Van Hierck of The Hague. Allocated to first class passengers, the room had a capacity of 110.

Interieur-20100109_Koene_067Picture Jan-Willem Koene

rdm300-ambassador-up-deck-koene-5120020Picture Jan-Willem Koene

Central staircase, designed by Han van Tienhoven.

Forward wall: Mirrored glass panel, made by Van Tetterode Glasindustry. In front of it the banisters, reconstructed by Friends of steamschip Rotterdam (picture Jan-Willem Koene)

During liner voyages in the central staircase several sliding walls were used to separate first and tourist class passengers. All sliding walls were scrapped during refurbishment in 2007. Friends of steamschip Rotterdam recontructed one of them partially on the Upper-Promenade Deck (picture Klaas Krijnen)

Design: C.L.W. Wirtz, interieurarchitect GKf, Rotterdam
Execution: Fa. C.A. Eckhart Meubelfabriek, Schiedam.

The former first class cardroom formed a unit with the Library and the Forecourt, and was separated from the latter by a decorative glass wall manufactured by the firm of Pieterman, Schiedam and designed by C. L. W. Wirtz. The other walls were carried out in teak and ash woods.

Design: C.L.W. Wirtz, interieurarchitect GKf, Rotterdam
Execution: C.H. Eckhart Meubelfabriek NV, Schiedam
Furnishings: Mutero NV Interieurarchitecten, Rotterdam
Architect: J. Schuil

The former first class library formed an architectural whole with the Cardroom and the Forecourt. The Library was separated from the Forecourt by a decorative glass wall. The remaining walls were carried out partly in teak and ash, and partly in Vynide. The painting “Thuiskomst na Visvangst” (Homecoming after the Fishing Voyage) is by Nel Bouhuijs-Klaassen of Zandvoort.

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

Design: C.L.W. Wirtz, interieurarchitect GKf, Rotterdam

This space formed the entry to the Smoking Room and was flanked by the Cardroom (now the Shore Excursion Office) and the Library. A decorative accent in the form of a bronze railing containing plexiglass blocks which incorporated sea life and insects, designed by C.L.W. Wirtz and carried out by the biology department of the firm Europlastic NV of Hilversum, graced the entrance to the Smoking Room.

Interieur-20091219_Koene_098Picture Jan-Willem Koene

Smoking Room:
Design: C.L.W. Wirtz, interieurarchitect GKf, Rotterdam
Execution: Fa. C.A. Eckhart Meubelfabriek, Schiedam.

From brochure HAL 1960

The first class smoking room enjoyed wide views of the promenade deck and the surrounding sea through large windows on either side. For that reason, the sides of the room were furnished with sofas which had reversible backs, so that they could be made to face either the windows or the center of the room as desired. Columns of Bangkok teak stood in front of the window walls. On the other walls the same teak was used in combination with raised Vynide panels set off by anodized aluminum strips.

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

Teakwood screens adorned with bronze sculptures of individuals from various parts of the world with their typical smoking articles – a Chinese, a Turk with a water-pipe, a leopard-man of central Africa, a Hulele woman from Ceylon, a native of Crete, and an (American) Indian with a peace-pipe – screened the passageways to the Tropic Bar and the Ritz-Carlton Room. These screens were designed by sculptor Evedine Schuurman-Henny and executed by the firm of Joosten, Arnhem. The portable furniture is decorated in gray stripes designed and manufactured by the painter V. E. Elenbaas. The ceiling is V-shaped and consists of teak-framed coffers with infilling of white and yellow Vynide. Lighting fixtures were designed by J. Hogervorst and made by ANVIA, Almelo. The glass sconces were manufactured by the Royal Dutch Glass Factory in Leerdam.

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1994)

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1994)

Pictures Klaas Krijnen

Tropic Bar:
Design: C.L.W. Wirtz, interieurarchitect GKf, Rotterdam
Execution: Fa. C.A. Eckhart Meubelfabriek, Schiedam.

Intended for first class passengers during liner service, the bar is designed around a painting which covers the entire wall, some thirty square meters. The painting Tropical Nights was designed and painted by Wally (V. E.) Elenbaas. The other walls are constructed of narrow teakwood panels. The original lighting fixtures were, as in the Smoking Room, designed by J. Hogervorst and made by ANVIA, Almelo.

During the years Holland America Line changed the interior of the Tropic Bar, which also happened during renovation in 2007-2010. The original closets behind the bar disappeared as did the baldachin. Our volunteers restored the baldachin and the closets behind the bar. PPG took care of color analysis and spraying the doors of the closets.

The Tropic Bar with the artwork of Wally Elenbaas  Picture Klaas Krijnen.

The situation in 1999      Picture Jan-Willem Koene

The restored closets behind the bar   Picture Jan-Willem Koene

The bar with the restored baldachin and the closets      Picture Jan-Willem Koene


Pictures Jan-Willem Koene

Design: Mutero NV, Rotterdam
Execution: De Nijs Meubelfabriek NV, Rotterdam
Architect: J. Schuil.

From brochure HAL 1960

This room has a capacity of 222 persons on two levels. It is the most prestigious room on the ship, designed for first class passengers when on transatlantic service. The balcony is reached from the main floor of the room via a broad curving staircase. The clock on the wall between the two entrances is designed and crafted by the blacksmith Leo Brom of Utrecht. The railings on the stairs and on the balcony are also by his hand. The stair rail is decorated with fish being menaced by a sea monster at the bottom of the stair rail, and eventually being caught in a fishnet on the balcony railing.

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

The huge wall painting depicts life surrounding the Aegean Sea and was designed and carried out by Cuno van den Steene from Baarn. The dance floor, carried out in variously toned bronze is meant to recall the ocean floor, swept back-and-forth by the tides. It was designed and executed by Jan Eloy and Leo Brom. A slightly elevated stage is placed adjacent to the dance floor.

Interieur-20100109_Koene_28Picture Jan-Willem Koene

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

The ceiling is intersected by six channels covered in a translucent material behind which fluorescent lights in colored tubes are concealed. These lighted panels are meant to convey something of what sea creatures see when they look up though the surface of the water toward the sky. The woodwork is carried out in Japanese ash, also known as tamo. Tabletops with glass mosaics were manufactured by Haro Op het Veld. A number of tables feature table lamps.

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)

Picture Klaas Krijnen (1996)