We cruised in November and took in a little of Barcelona before hand due to a strike in the city, arrived at the port waited for 2 hours of general disorganised chaos and then welcomed aboard to be shown to our balcony room which was not really a balcony but more of a large porthole which was not made clear to us when booking, it was difficult to see anything unless standing at balcony, I believe the balconies above deck 9 are full glass which would have been much better.
Our cruise started with the usual safety brief, I know this is mandatory but in 5 languages and every 2 nd or 3rd port this becomes unbearable for half an hour each time, we went up to the deck 14 buffet which was very busy , it was serving cold bland food mixed with people pushing and shoving to get to the food , the seating area is huge however it has to accommodate thousands and chances of getting a seat while you food is still warm is slim. Our worst experience of this restaurant was being pushed by a fellow cruiser rather than be polite enough to wait his turn for food, the service for drinks is sparse. Breakfast is also pretty poor in here.
We ate in the black crab main dining room, again food is a bit of a hit and miss , not sure if any of the dishes were authentic Italian and mostly lukewarm.
The entertainment inboard is not much better than silly games in the black and white bar to a man who looked like he had passed away many years ago while playing the piano in the jazz bar, although is really bad interpretation of Neil diamond was the highlight of our entertainment.
Through no fault of msc we did endure bad weather whilst leaving Gibraltar into the Atlantic which caused around 2 days of the ship rolling all day and night and no chance of sunbathing,general sunbathing ares when the weather was ok we're very busy and the entertainment at poolside was truly awful.
Our biggest gripe about the cruise was that our fellow guests that would just push and shove and shout amongst themselves and had no concept of queuing or indeed holding a door open for anyone , good manners does not feature ! The cruise has several ports which are accessible by car and although we paid quite a lot for our holiday our fellow mates were holidaying for a mere 200 pounds for an inside cabin, with this and a mix of general resentment from the staff to service there guests does not make for a special cruise.
We tried to make good a bad holiday however the final straw was in Sacramento restaurant where the service was slow as the staff were watching the football on the tv and the guitarist decided to stop and also watch the football, our food arrived and appeared to all be prepackaged, we were served potato wedges which had a large black in edible piece in it and when I called the waitress she took it away to ask the chef what was going on and he went into a rant, arms up in the air and then gestured to us in disbelief that his food wasn't good enough, we decided to leave with the chefs eyes firmly planted on us, a real lack of customer service and disregard for the guests in every aspect.
We cruised earlier in the year with celebrity from Miami and it is vastly superior to msc, great food, great people and great entertainment, msc needs to be much more customer focused and have better trained staff to compete with other cruise companies.