MSC Seascape, the second EVO-Class ship launched by MSC Cruises in a little over a year, is all about continuity. The Geneva-based cruise line is doubling down on its mission to conquer the North American market with this gorgeous 170,000-gross-ton vessel.
Identical to its sister ship MSC Seashore in nearly every way, MSC Seascape features a glitzy, New York City-inspired aesthetic. The metropolitan glamour touches are best exemplified in the four-deck Atrium with its dazzling staircase featuring 10,000 Swarovski crystals. But even with its swanky appearance, MSC Seascape is still a family-friendly ship at heart with multiple pools, play areas, an expansive Doremiland kids club, game rooms and the brand-new thrill ride Robotron (the one feature that notably sets it apart from MSC Seashore).
While the ship's design draws inspiration from the Big Apple and a hearty helping of Americana (albeit through a European lens), MSC Cruises' international charm is very much intact on board MSC Seascape, as evidenced by the large presence of international cruisers. In fact, the American touches are a homerun among the MSC faithful. And although English might not be the most prevalent language among passengers, for the most part you'll find no issues communicating with the courteous and cheerful staff.
A smidge larger than sister ship MSC Seashore, MSC Seascape can accommodate 5,877 passengers at double occupancy. As big as the ship is, it features a smart layout with plenty of nooks and crannies that enable you to find the right spot to revel or relax, at your leisure.
MSC Seascape has 19 decks (the highest one is Deck 20, but Italian superstition nixes number 17). A neat little feature is that every deck on MSC Seascape is named after a famous island, from the Phi Phi Islands of Thailand (Deck 4) to the United Arab Emirates' Sir Bani Yas island (Deck 19).
Despite the high number of decks, MSC Seascape manages to deliver intimate spaces that do a good job at limiting overcrowding. One way the ship achieves this is by breaking up the traditional main dining room into four smaller restaurants spread across Decks 6-8, each with distinct décor and feel but identical service and menus.
With its 13 pools and water features, MSC Seascape strives to strike a balance between kid-friendly and adult-enticing settings. The centerpieces are the Marina Pool and the Jungle Room Pool, located on opposite sides of Deck 18. Both are somewhat small, and during our sailing, the Jungle Room Pool's indoor setting (it features a retractable roof) attracted the most attention from passengers. But on MSC Seascape's Caribbean sailings, it's entirely reasonable to see the outdoor Marina Pool take center stage. The adults-only Infinity Pool on Deck 8 is a little slice of paradise; a very 'Instagrammable' spot on the aft of the ship that also features a bar and a gelato station.
MSC Seascape features 140,000 square feet of public outdoor space, reinforcing the notion that this is indeed a ship for warm weather sailings. While this wasn't super useful during our December sailing from Bermuda to New York City, the ship's Caribbean itineraries from PortMiami will make all the outdoor space shine.
With 2,270 cabins and 11 categories, variety is not an issue on MSC Seascape. Featuring muted yet elegant tones and decor, the cabins throughout the ship are comfortable and efficient. Families can take advantage of the fact that in-room sofas convert into extra beds. Additionally, the ship features 75 dedicated cabins for guests with mobility challenges, a slight increase from MSC Seashore's total of 66 cabins.
Where the ship's cabins really shine, though, is in the luxurious MSC Yacht Club. Perched at the top of MSC Seascape, across Decks 16-19 on the aft, the Yacht Club is MSC's ship-within-a-ship suite experience and the undisputed crown jewel on MSC Seascape. The complex features 131 suites as well as its own restaurant and an exclusive (and expansive) sun deck with a pool, whirlpools and a buffet.
With so many comfortable amenities, it's entirely possible to spend all your time withing the confines of the Yacht Club. And if and when you leave, your attentive butler can either escort you to your next destination within the ship or arrange reservations for dinner or shows for you. We've said before that the perks of the Yacht Club make booking an interior suite here better than a bigger cabin elsewhere on the ship, and this opinion holds true on MSC Seascape.
With 11 restaurants on board MSC Seascape, you'll have a cornucopia of choices. The ship's complimentary eateries -- the buffet and the four-restaurant main dining room -- are decent options. We liked the layout of the Marketplace buffet and its bistro-like ambiance, and the main dining room's restaurants offer a substantial level of intimacy not typically found on ships with large dining rooms. The quality of the food and of the service, however, tends to be inconsistent.
A much different story is served up on all five of MSC Seascape's specialty restaurants. It stands to reason that if something costs extra, it will invariably be better than the complimentary options. But on MSC Seascape, the difference felt more pronounced than other similar cruise lines. Your culinary preferences will determine which of the specialty restaurants is best. We especially enjoyed the steakhouse Butcher's Cut and the upscale atmosphere of seafood-focused Ocean Cay, but you can't go wrong with any of them.
On par with the specialty restaurants, the Yacht Club Restaurant dials up the dining experience as well. The location alone is peerless, as one would expect of a suites-only restaurant, but the menu and the attention to detail surpasses expectations. You can also eat at the Yacht Club's buffet or enjoy snacks throughout the day at the Yacht Club Top Sail Lounge, so choices are also plentiful here.
For the most up-to-date testing, masking, and vaccination requirements aboard MSC Seascape, please refer to MSC Cruises health and safety protocols. You can also refer to Cruise Critic's guide to masking requirements on the world's major cruise lines.
* All meals in the four main dining rooms and Marketplace Buffet
Water, tea, coffee and milk; juice available at breakfast only
Use of the water park and sports area
Use of the fitness center, excluding classes or training sessions
Most daily activities onboard, including trivia games, live music, and classes and workshops
Use of the kids', tween and teen clubs
Access to Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, including buffet lunch and use of sun loungers on the beach
Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks (except water, tea and coffee)
Room service (included for higher-tier cruise packages only)
Some evening shows
Meals in specialty restaurants
Wi-Fi (except for Yacht Club passengers)
Spa treatments, fitness classes and training sessions
Purchases from onboard shops
Robotron, F1 simulator, XD and arcade games
In line with MSC Cruises' strong international appeal, MSC Seascape draws an international audience. During our sailing, which originated in Rome (Civitavecchia), English (specifically, North American English) was far from being the most spoken language among passengers and signage throughout is multilingual (English, Italian, German, French, Spanish and Portuguese).
Sailings from Miami will likely attract a higher number of North American passengers, but cruisers from Europe and South America traditionally make up about half of MSC's travelers, so this may likely still be the case on MSC Seascape.
The ship also featured daily meets and greets (both hosted and unhosted) for LGBTQIAP+ as well as single and solo passengers at the Loft Café on Deck 8, while sober cruisers had daily meetings at the Uptown Lounge also on Deck 8. MSC Seascape is mobility-friendly throughout, and features ADA cabins with automatic ramps to access the balconies, wheelchair and scooter-accessible doors and bathrooms and closets with pulldown racks for wheelchair height.