MSC Divina Cruise Review by keeponcruisin48: Had a great time
Overall Member Rating
Had a great time
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Having sailed with the usual suspects (Celebrity, NCL, RCCL, Princess, Cunard) this was our first time with MSC. Have to say was attracted by the very reasonable cost but also excited to try a new line. Read the reviews but the positives appeared to outweigh the negatives, so off we set. Embarkation was easy, fast and smooth, and we found our way to the cabin with no problem. Cabin good and spacious, plenty of storage for 2 women travelling together (we left our husbands at home!) BUT we found we were in an obstructed view cabin, which we had not been told about and did not want. Most of the balcony cabins had the usual glass panel but some towards the front have obstructed views, so if you're booking a balcony make sure it's not obstructed - unless you don't mind. In this one, if you sat on the chairs all you could see on our balcony was the steel side of the ship. Not good, the only reason I book a balcony is to sit with a drink in hand and gaze at the ocean. Our Travel Agent had More
not been told it was obstructed view and we definitely would not have booked it if we had known. So black mark to MSC. Am still trying to get some redress from them.
However, we weren't going to let it ruin our cruise so we just headed off to the bar, of which there are many. As previous reviewers have said, drinks prices very reasonable compared with other cruise lines. We had the coupon books which are the best idea EVER, $72 for 15 drinks. If you're not a big drinker the Allegrissimo package isn't good value so this worked really well for us. In fact I bought 2 books and didn't even manage to finish the second, despite having as many drinks of all kinds - wine, cocktails, soft drinks etc as I wanted.
Décor-wise the ship is beautiful, little bit 'shiny' for my personal taste but that's what it is, personal taste. Very clean, saw more people cleaning than on any other ship. Cabin and bathroom kept clean by our cabin attendant, who while polite and reasonably efficient didn't seem too happy in his chosen career. We asked him one morning how he was and his reply was 'I'm fine at the moment.......pause....but we have to wait and see what the afternoon and the evening bring'! Not exactly one of life's Pollyannas!
Food-wise, I have to say we were disappointed with the variety at the buffet. Celebrity definitely win hands down here, the buffet set-up itself was confusing and not well laid out, and the choices, while adequate, were not as good as they could have been. Very greasy bacon, no Canadian/English bacon, no smoked salmon/herring etc.at breakfast, so that was a disappointment. Lunch OK, lots of pizza - which was good - and pasta but again, nothing really to make you want to have seconds. Dinner in the MDR was mostly good and if you wanted other choices/more of a dish/didn't like something, our server happily complied. Probably one of the nicest and friendliest servers I've every encountered, he was such a joy all of us at the table (4 couples) jointly tipped him extra. Our table-mates were great but of course that's the luck of the draw.
Entertainment was excellent, theater comfortable and great acoustics.
Fabulous little café in the Piazza Del Doge I think it was, with great ice-cream drinks, coffees and wonderful selection of pastries.
The pool areas were beautiful, nicer than other ships I've been on and loved the pool aft by the Garden Bar, not the main pool but a great area to be in with THE best choice of music - not live, but a really great selection. And no loud PA announcements :)
Spa was wonderful, staffed by Balinese therapists and masseuses, so you get the experience of being in Bali without the cost of getting there! Had some wonderful treatments, their packages are pretty well priced.
Disembarkation easy, we went to our assigned meeting point in the theater (they do say you have to vacate your cabin by 7.00 but we got all our hand luggage ready to go, went up for breakfast and came back down) -our disembark time was 9.30, so we didn't have to rush and it wasn't a problem leaving our stuff there till we got back from breakfast. Took a little while to be called, but we were comfortable sitting in the theater and were off and through Customs etc by about 10.30 so not too bad.
Biggest complaint I had was using the website prior to the cruise - although we did book through a TA I did go on the site several times and found it very difficult and non-responsive. Apparently they have hired some big techie and will be re-doing the entire site, so that's good news. Also their Customer Service leaves a lot to be desired, they don't seem to know everything they should and take forever to answer the phone. F grade here MSC!
Overall would I sail again with MSC? Yes, I would. But would like to see better food variety. And I have to say my first love is still Celebrity............ Less
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Pros, Cons, and Bottom Line
MSC Divina didn't disappoint.