We booked a special with MSC to the Portuguese Island in January 2012 on the Sinfonia. Unfortunately, there was a Hurricane and the Captain decided it wasn't safe, and we went to Port Elizabeth. Which was really disappointing, but of course it wasn't the Captains fault. The seas was quite rough, i did get a bit seas sick on the first day, I found it worse in the evenings when you are laying on the bed. After popping 2 Valium pills, I slept like a baby. There was 4 of us, we all shared 1 room, at first the room was really small and not much room to walk, but after separating the "double bed" into singles against the wall, there was more room. The Rooms are small, but we would only be using it sleep. The bunk beds, were not what I was expecting. But they were quite comfortable. The shower was very small, but we managed.
The entertainment in the evenings was FANTASTIC! for me that was the Highlight of the cruise, the food was good. We ate in the sit down restaurant for dinner and tried them for breakfast and lunch. I was a little disappointed for an Italian ship, that there weren't much garlic and brinjal - you know those Mediterranean style flavors -- they did however have fresh homemade breads and pastries that were out of this world. Their cakes were light and great. They also had homemade ice creams in the sit down restaurant for dinner. The portions were quite small on the sit down meals, but you could order more if you wanted.
The staff were friendly and helpful, especially the waiters in the sit down restaurant. The other Highlight for me was the midnight buffet with the carving. Being a chef myself, I really appreciated this.
The one problem we did find on numerous occasions, was the theater, that there weren't enough seats. Specifically with the staff " talent-less" show. My mom was in a wheelchair so she had to ask the people if she could "join" them at the wheelchair friendly table (they weren't in wheelchairs), the people just kept coming in thou, and were seated up the stairs, and people were standing. Which blocked the people at the top level that were seated from seeing. They stood, but unfortunately my mother didn't see the show as she could stand or see. During the other shows there wasn't really a problem, as they generally had 2 shows. Other then that we had a wonderful time. We are actually booked to go later this month again (we hoping that we can get to the Portuguese island this time ?), we will be going on the New ship the Opera. I'm really looking forward to it.