I wanted to relate to you our experience on the MCS Opera. From the time we checked in we started experiencing problems. The young man at the check in counter could not run our credit card, he said he would have to enter it manually, this would prove to be a problem later in the cruise. In addition, my picture for the room and charge card did not come out clearly. When I boarded the ship I was taken aside and asked to see my passport. I was then told I had to go to the reception desk and get a new picture. So that was the start of our cruise experience.
Our problems continued with the food. This being our 9th cruise we are very familiar with the quality and quantity of cruise ship food. The food on this ship was mediocre at best and of poor quality most of the time. Portions in the main dining room were small. On numerous occasions we had to go to the buffet after our meal to feel we had a complete dinner. One of my main courses consisted of veal cutlets about the size of a More
silver dollar. There were a total of three on my plate and about 2 ounces of potatoes to go with it. Three of our meals were inedible due to the meat being over cooked and dried out. Most of the fish dishes were of poor quality. I could go to any Denny’s or Applebee’s restaurant and get far superior meals than anything served on this ship. The chicken cordon bleu was breaded and deep fried and tasted like a McDonald’s Happy Meal. In addition coffee or tea were not available with dinner in the main dining room. I will not even go into the buffet food as I would just because it was even worse than the dining room.
My troubles continued with a member of the reception desk staff. Prior to leaving for the cruise we had contacted MSC regarding transportation to Amsterdam from the port, which is about 45 minutes away. We had been told that the bus ride was complimentary. Once on board we found this not to be the case. We had to buy a bus excursion into Amsterdam for 32 euros each. The next day, I received a note in my room to come to the reception desk to talk about these charges. As mentioned, before the problem with my credit card at check in was raising its ugly head. Upon my arrival at the reception desk and showing the young lady the note, her first words to me were,”You can’t make any more charges to your room”. When I asked why she said, “You didn’t run a credit card when you came on board”. When I related to her what had happened when we checked in she then told me, “That’s not how we do it, the people on shore don’t know what they are doing and you didn’t run your credit card”. After several more exchanges like this, and her telling me not to be rude, I asked to see her supervisor. Other than an apology from the supervisor nothing else was said or done about the incident.
I have attached a picture of the shower floor in our state room. Most of the edge of the shower is coated with mold. This was indicative of the cleanliness of the rest of the ship. Windows and mirrors smudged and dirty, tables in the buffet wiped with only a wet cloth that just spread the mess around instead of removing it. On one occasion I observed a bus boy drop his cleaning cloth on the floor, step on it, pick it up and continue to “clean” tables with it. I did not even contemplate going in the pools or Jacuzzis. At one time I saw an infant of about 12 months in one of the Jacuzzis, with a diaper on, and none of the staff asked it to be removed.
I have many more examples of problems with this ship including tendering issues, lack of amenities, and certain crew attitudes that would take too long to relate to you here. Overall, we were very disappointed with this ship and would never take another MSC cruise. We did not have any issues with the multiple languages on board and this was one of the bright spots of the ship as was the nightly entertainment. This ship was advertised as a 4 star ship and I would not even rate it a 2. This was not just our opinion but that of many other passengers we talked to while on board. One experienced traveler we met called this a Dollar Store cruise, which fits it very well. I would not recommend this cruise line to anyone in the future. Less