We were four of a group of 13. Port was a nightmare when we arrived and staff ranged from bothered to outright rude. This includes talking about passengers behind their backs like they were idiots. Nothing about boarding was well marked, efficient, or pleasant. Even when I beamed a smile and thanked them and wished them a wonderful day. Our dining group got split into different times and dining rooms.
We boarded. Staff talked among themselves...no welcome or anything.
At the end of the cruise we found out the individuals can not accept cash tips, and can result in termination. When we inquired about it we found. All tips go into a pool and are divided equally. So a waiter who does excellent, like ours, will not see the tip as you'd give it. They can accept gifts. Which my account for lack of attention of some, explain, Not excuse.
We went to rooms. They were ready. Small but do-able. Shower was tiny and curtain even stick to my size "0" DD. Room attendant was not great. No fruit. daily letters always late.
Saw about dinner reservations. They told me who ever booked it only booked for 9. Funny...I made the booking for the group and handled everything. Ended up with a table for 9 and a table for 4, Late seating in the Ibiscus. Waiter and Assistant waiter were AWESOME! Found little to no language barrier. Food in dinning room lacked flavor. Cocktail staff were SLOW! Buffet food was good. Juices were VERY watered down. Lines awful and sorry to say my fellow americans were rude, wasteful, gluttons.
my roomy is a gym junkie and spent 2 hours a day there. Clean. Location pleasant. Equipment was current, easy to use and adequate enough to get through her usual weekly rituals.
Kids program was a soar spot with me. Loved getting to spend time with kids and enjoyed ourselves in spite of the lack of a kids program. The time block they called a Jr. program was when there were really no adult activities to speak of. As a parent I was looking forward to a little child free time with other adults. That did not happen. It is also a BIG mistake for MSC. If the kids are safe and entertained...parents will spend $$ on Spa treatments, go to activities in lounges and drink more, hit casino and any number of other areas where the line makes $.
I found entertainment staff on pool deck amusing. Shows in theater...Not what I expected. I've seen better shows on other lines. Found the magic act lacking, and chair dance number between sets vulgar. NOT KID FRIENDLY. Everything in theater was classical or Circe de sole-ish. Fine for a night or two. Would have like more entertainment options. As kids sail free a rating or description of shows would have helped. Or make the shows kid friendly. Even a few pranks by staff on pool deck had me cringing when the kids were there.
Seating my the pool was always available. Although at least 2 days I found it too windy to stay there long.
Ports we did our own thing so can not comment on excursions.
Disembarking was as bad if not worse then embarking. Had to get luggage and drag it with you lines started as 2 split into 6. people pushing, cutting each other off, running your toes over, etc. only to get to 1 agent handling 2 lines.
Overall we had a great time because we kept an open mind, great attitude, a fun group and an awesome dining staff.