Holland America Line has announced that the first of its three new ships, scheduled to be launched late in 1992, will bring HAL back to Europe in spring of 1993.

The 1,266-passenger Statendam will sail May 7, 1993, from New York to London starting a 35-day Grand Europe Cruise to be followed by a series of 13-day and 12-day cruises in northern Europe, along the Atlantic coast, and in the Eastern and Western Mediterranean.

This is the first time in some 30 years that HAL has cruised in Europe. The European summer program will be preceded by a series o introductory cruises from Fort Lauderdale.

The Statendam is the first of three new ships under construction at Fincantieri in Italy. Two sister ships, the Maasdam and the Ryndam, are scheduled for delivery in 1993 and 1994.

HAL also announced that the Rotterdam will be offering a world cruise in 1993, which the line has not offered since 1987.

HAL claims that the Statendam will be most luxurious and most innovative ship ever built for the company.

The Statendam will have a total of 633 staterooms including 29 suites and 120 deluxe cabins with minibars and private balconies. Each suite will also have a small private dining area. The ship will also have 352 large outside staterooms and 132 inside staterooms.

Special features include a 600-seat, two-deck show lounge; an ocean view spa; a domed Lido pool area, with children's wading pool and two Jacuzzis; and a two-deck 745-seat dining room with a curved "grand entry" staircase, located at the stern of the ship to provide ocean views on three sides.

There will also be two large audiovisually­ equipped meeting rooms adjacent to the 249-seat movie theatre to accommodate the company's incentive business and other large groups.

The 50,000-ton Statendam will be 720 feet long with a 101-foot beam. The ship will have a lower berth capacity of 1,266-passengers and carry a crew of 550. In the HAL tradition, officers will be Dutch, and the crew Indonesian and Filipino.

A. Kirk Lanterman, President, has said that HAL has set three objectives with its new vessels: a strong presence in Europe; a year-round presence in the Caribbean; and the deployment of five, rather than four, vessels seasonally in Alaska.