Since both my husband and I are seasoned sailors, we tend to prefer smaller ships; however, the price for a trip to Bermuda was right so we decided to go on this cruise. Let's start from the beginning!
Processing of passengers at the terminal proved to be a somewhat slow process in what felt like a huge warehouse facility. Photos were taken for I.D. purposes, then we hurried up and waited in rows of chairs to eventually hear our "boardingn number" called.
Once on the ship itself, we found it to be a beautifully appointed ship and very clean. Once in our cabin and ready to unpack ou clothes, we found that there were some missing hangers (the type that clip into a ring on the rod). I called down to housekeeping asking for additional hangers and was informed we'd have them shortly. Meantime, we doubled up our clothes on the existing hangers. Several hours later (we boarded about 2:00 p.m.), and after dinner and evening show, we still didn't have the hangers. I called back a 2nd time and was told "Patience Madame". I thought 7+ hours was being patient. Called again the next day (3rd call) and was told we'd have the hangers shortly. Again, no results. Found our cabin steward who got us hangers within minuts! I give high marks to our cabin steward who took excellent care of us during our trip.
Because of work being done on the dock area in Bermuda, the itinerary was changed so that we went to Naussau first. As a result, we only spent 2 days in Bermuda as opposed to the original 3 days we were to be there.
Upon arrival in Bermuda, ship had to anchor and tenders used. Seas were rough and several individual were injured. I must commend the crew as they did a tremendous job of helping passengers on and off the tenders.
Dinner... our dining room steward was wonderful with the exception of one thing only. When I asked for a glass of Cabernet-Sauvignon to go with my rack of lamb, I was told that the wine was a white wine, and not red. This was such an unexpected piece of information that I just decided to order Merlot instead. I can only assume that the steward thought I had ordered Sauvignon Blanc.
Menu selection was excellent but food was usually served lukewarm - never hot.
Breakfast and lunch in the Cafeteria were sheer bedlam! Finding a table was akin to looking for a diamond in shag carpeting. Unless one got there before the serving stations were open, your chances of finding a table were very low. Consequently, we started going to the restaurant for lunch and breakfast... at least we were led to a table with available seats there. Service was another issue though. Menu options were more limited and food was tepid at best. One morning, I asked for a mushroom omelet with 2 links of sausage and got scrambled eggs with bacon! Communication was a problem. If we asked about something which was not a familiar word to the crew, we got a shrug as they walked away.
Back to the Cafeteria... on the PLUS side... the salad bar was excellent.
The caliber of entertainment was superb! Unfortunately, in order to get a seat, we had to line up 30-45 minutes ahead of time. The balcony was not the answer either as there was a bar at eye level so that we had to sit forward on our seat in order to see above it or scrunge down in your seat to see below it.
The variety of lounges provided good variety of music from ballroom to latin and classic. We enjoyed ballroom dancing several evenings and a quiet cocktail in one of the quieter lounges.
Some of the staff was borderline rude on a couple of occasions that we witnessed. Once was in the library where 2 male staff membes were doing an inventory of the books. One lady found a book she would have liked to read but access to the book was unavailable (doors were locked). She was informed in a less than diplomatic manner that an inventory was being conducted. No smiles, no "I sorry"... just very abrupt reply to her query.
There was a lot of activity in the pool area. My husband and I did find a quiet spot at the stern where we were able to relax and read our books without all the noise and activity. The crew did a wonderful job of entertaining those passengers who wanted to participate in a wide variety of programs.
Some passengers complained about the fact that announcements were made in several languages but I didn't find that to be a problem as, if I missed the announcement in English, I could then catch it in one of the other languages as I speak French and Spanish.
Overall, the bottom line is, would we go on the MSC Poesia again? Answer... it depends on the itinerary and price but we do prefer smaller ships (350 passengers and less is our preference). No long lines and better service since there are fewer passengers.