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14 Genoa MSC Cruises MSC Bellissima Cruise Reviews

My husband and I have been travelling for over 30 years and this was the worst holiday we have ever had. The Staff and crew are disorganised and poorly trained in there jobs. They have no customer service skills at all. Most looked ... Read More
My husband and I have been travelling for over 30 years and this was the worst holiday we have ever had. The Staff and crew are disorganised and poorly trained in there jobs. They have no customer service skills at all. Most looked like they didn't want to be in the job and were reluctant to talk or smile and it came across as they were only there to get paid and tour the world. Not at all helpful in any way. From the time we arrived at the port with the embarkation disorganisation we hoped it would improve but sadly it got worse. When we finally got on the ship no one was there to tell us where our cabin was and we had difficulty finding it. When we made it to the room we were impressed by the cabin. It was clean and spacious. We requested early dining and even on our documentation we printed out before we left home it stated early dining at 5.30 pm ...only to find when we arrived we had been allocated 7.45 dining. We went to the restaurant and requested to change and was told there were no vacancies yet other members of our party were given the earlier time..no questioned asked. We were surprised that you had to pay for still water in dining rooms...Never had this before..surely for customer relations MSC could afford a glass of water with meals. On three occasions in the dining room the meal was not edible but if we went to buffet they closed at 8.30 and all that was available was pizza. My husband asked for french fries the second night of the cruise and every night he received fries no other vegetables even though we said no fries. Then they started giving me fries as well which I said no too but received them anyway.. Our cabin was cleaned daily, the bed made and bins emptied but the lid of the bin was dirty with spilt soft drink when we arrived and was still spotty on day 17 so not cleaned at all. Our balcony was only cleaned once during whole ship balcony cleaning. On other occasions the top decks were being cleaned and water was cascading down onto our balcony so we had to close the doors and stay inside. We were charged movie fees for movies which we didn't use and when we went to guest services and said we didn't use this facility and the girl , who was very rude, said we must have. We said we flicked through the titles but she insisted that we had confirmed the movies. WE know we didn't and then after much discussion she said she would delete it but next time we would have to pay no matter what...So we turned the TV off and didn't use it again. As for Zoe that was a complete waste of time. Very limited responses. There were no tissues available in the cabins which surprised us as with the amount of clients that had coughs and colds on board. The buffet was a nightmare there was no hygiene at the doors and people were coming in from toilets etc to food.unacceptable...The Europeans on board were terrible for picking up food with their fingers from the buffet and putting it on their plates then returning it to the buffet if they saw something they liked better further along the line. There was no one available to monitor the buffet lines.The buffet closed at 8-8.30 each night which was crazy considering there were over 4500 passengers on board..Surely it can be left open to say 10.00pm. The entertainment was average and it is the first time we have ever had to book and pay for the entertainment. On sea days there was nothing to do unlike other lines. The pool deck staff spoke in Spanish or Italian all the time and for us english only speaking we had no idea what was going on. MSC Tours...What can we say...very expensive for what was provided. Our introduction to Dubai tour was a shambles. We had a bus trip through some very ordinary streets ,Museum with about 500 people crammed into a confined space, a mosque which we were informed we couldn't go inside as MSC didn't have enough time to organise that component then a quick trip back to the ship. a 4-4.30 hour tour with us leaving the port at 3.30 and returning before 7 pm. We lined up at shore excursions for over 30 mins to complain and didnt get served so cut our losses and left. Others in our group got the hop on hop off bus outside the port and had all day for less cost. So make sure you check costs of outside tours before booking with MSC...most if not all ports had taxis and mini buses etc. Prices for all were about half the cost of MSC. The day before we left the ship I had Euros which I hadn't spent and went to guest services to pay off our account. At NO Time was I told that the account would be closed. The staff on the disembarking station were rude as well every time we left the ship and came back we were met with a very gruff grab of the card (snatching) and he would throw it back at us...it became a joke between the passengers as to how hard he could snatch and throw the cruise card at us......not good.... On leaving the ship on the 30th we got to the exit and my card brought up a RED screen and the person said I couldn't leave the ship until I had paid the Account...I was very embarrassed as he said it so loud and every one in the line heard but he didn't say that only 12.25 Euros that was owed. WE had signed a pre authorization form in our check in and assumed that this covered any balance owing when we left the ship..NO ...So we had to go back to guest services to pay the balance. We waited over 1/2 hour to be served( with all the new passengers the queues were very long)..We were served by a young boy who spoke very little english and had no idea and kept saying as we were new passengers we had to authorise our credit card. After getting very impatient trying to explain we were leaving the ship and had a pre authoration for our credit card to be debited with the balance owing...I asked to speak to someone else and then waited another 17 mins until someone else came. we were told that because we paid some of the balance in cash it had cancelled the pre authorisation. Why bother with pre authorisation if it doesn't work. I was told to pay balance but they wouldn't take Australian or American dollars which was all i had. After waiting more time finally someone in the office saw some sense and pressed a button and reactivated the pre authorisation of my credit card. We were told that we should have been told that this scenario would happen...again lack of staff training and customer service skills.Needless to say we missed our transfer and had extra costs with taxis etc... I am sure that there will be lots of negative feedback from this cruise as every one we spoke to had numerous complaints ..there was no atmosphere on board, the staff unhappy and rude, the MSC line was out to money grab on every opportunity available... All in all a horrible cruise and very disappointing as we were looking forward to it so much.. I would have like and expect MSC to compensate us for having to deal with all the problems we encountered but we will NOT hear from MSC again...They have our money..and don't care As for recommending MSC to our friends NO...we will be telling them the truth....For one bad experience the customer will tell ten people ...I will be telling my network which is extensive...through facebook , trip advisor and cruise critic as well a letter will be forwarded to MSC head office. We will not be cruising with MSC again... MSC NOT FOR ME Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Having now completed 7 cruises over 8 years with MSC we continue to enjoy the multi national experience both on board and counties visited. This cruise will rank as one of our favorites great ship great food fantastic crew and many happy ... Read More
Having now completed 7 cruises over 8 years with MSC we continue to enjoy the multi national experience both on board and counties visited. This cruise will rank as one of our favorites great ship great food fantastic crew and many happy memories. Aurea experience anytime dinners great fun with food well presented attentive service by Rico our waiter and personally treated every night by one of the Restaurant managers Antonino from Sorrento. Buffet was good with a variety of foods available to suit all tastes cheeses cold cuts were all high quality with ethnic foods reflecting current port of call Speciality restaurants Butchers Cut magnificent ...went back twice French Restaurant great experience yummo Theatre only small for this size ship so getting to the free shows takes some advance planning Sky lounge after dinner is great as well as the Studio lounge Overall great experience with next MSC cruise booked for 2021 Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We bought this as a package that included flights. We looked forward for over a year to a beautiful new ship and watched the progress of its construction. Sadly the anticipation was the best part. Bellissima is a huge ship that crams in ... Read More
We bought this as a package that included flights. We looked forward for over a year to a beautiful new ship and watched the progress of its construction. Sadly the anticipation was the best part. Bellissima is a huge ship that crams in as many cabins and people at the sacrifice of public areas. There are never enough seats in the public areas although there are tables available, the lack of seats makes it difficult to find a spot. The deck chairs around the main pool are crammed in and always seemed to be reserved even though this is supposed to be a no no. The main pool deck 15 has the smoking area so it stinks of cigarettes. There is always entertainment there, if you call it that, and games with only a dozen or so participants at all times. It’s very loud and in your face, so a quiet time around the pool is not possible. The other very small pool at the rear is better but again lacks seating. The music here is over loud speakers and could be softer. There’s a bar here but again lack of seating and also a smoking area. Bar staff overall on the ship are rude or indifferent, and lack the necessary skills to operate a bar. The bars are also lacking in seating, with so many guests onboard and nowhere to sit. The so called adults only bar was out of order at least twice when we tried that one, and one of the bars only had drinks above our drinks package. Now regarding the drinks package. We bought the easy package a year out from the cruise. We have friends who sailed earlier this year on another MSC ship who were able to have drinks up to €6.50......so they happily had Jameson’s on their cruise with no problem at any bar. MSC are very misleading in their description of the packages and describe a selection of spirits, cocktails and wines. We were aware that the beers included were Heineken and found also Amstel light, which is ok. The selection of spirits however is bottom shelf Bells whisky, Vodka, Gin and bottom shelf Rum. No bourbon, which is my drink. All of the decent drinks were €6.50 but our package was up to €6.00 and no exception. We can only assume that MSC have changed that between the time of our friends cruise and ours. The cocktails aren’t cocktails, they are mixers like G&T and Vodka and orange, but we did find a way around it. If you are stuck on the easy drinks buy your non alcoholic cocktails and a shot of rum etc with the mixer separate and just mix it in! When we questioned the drinks package all they were interested in is upgrading your package for an exorbitant amount of money. We would’ve been better off paying as we go. Bar manager Tafseer Said did his best to rectify our issues with the bar and whenever he saw us he always checked that things were ok. Chocolate bar a huge waste of space that could be better accommodated with, say a lounge area, as lots of chocolate on display but no one in here buying. The massive casino is just another attempt at making money and could’ve been a quarter of the size as hardly anyone using it. Obviously an indoor smoking area which was offensive. Again that would’ve given more nice public area. No library or place to have a quiet read. Cirque Du Soleil was a amateurish performance and the so called cocktails were a choice of non alcoholic mai tai, gin and tonic or rum and something. NOT COCKTAILS as described and they were awful with most people not drinking them. Dining.....we didn’t eat in the animal farm buffet although did a walk through a couple of times. As a Coeliac I needed to eat in the main restaurants. A plus is that this is a Coeliac certified ship with a Gluten Free kitchen. I was served only by the head waiter at all times and every effort was made to accommodate this without exception. Yoseph in the the main dining and Marcelo at breakfast. I usually skipped lunch but on one occasion did use the restaurant for lunch. We found the service slow here and they charged for a bottle of wine rather than a glass on our package. My advice is to keep track of the charges as there were a few mistakes made and other guests had the same issue. The evening meals were nice but towards the latter part of the trip they became mundane. Service however by Greisy Maria in the main dining room was excellent. If you are Coeliac you will have no worries here. My only issue is that the buffet could have some dry pre packaged crackers gluten free so that a light lunch with, say cheese and lettuce could be had. On the Hurtigruten line this was accomodated. I do carry my own rice crackers however and I would recommend doing this. The cabins are a little smaller than the MSC Poesia which we have sailed on before, but quite comfortable. It’s strange but on a new ship things like the lounge looked really old and I can’t help but wonder that it may have been fitted out with things from another ship, maybe having a refurb? Bathroom a little small esp for larger people but quite adequate. Shower was nice and hot with a good amount of pressure, . We are both small so it wasn’t any great issue for us.The cabin boy was warm friendly but needs more training. Lots of dust that wasn’t attended to both in the cabin and bathroom and on a few occasions I had to leave a note to replenish the soap. No big issue though. Beds were always well made and comfortable. We were on deck 11 in a balcony room and had a little verandah with two chairs. One major bone is that they don’t provide Kleenex tissues in the room!!!! Now this may seem mundane but when you have to waste your time in ports looking for a supermarket to buy tissues then it’s an issue. Even a lowly two star hotel motel provides tissues, so a beautiful new ship not providing them is ridiculous. Is this their way of cost cutting? The cabins are built with a slot for them and there were many complaints about it. We had to use toilet paper when we ran out of our own......really poor! The entertainment in the theatre was, for the most part, quite good except for Daniel mime! I’m sorry for the artist but it was terrible. A children’s matinee would’ve been more professional. Lots of people walked out, including us. We gave him a second chance another night but it was equally awful. I felt embarrassed for him. The opera was boring as the songs weren’t known songs as expected. Most of the shows we’re pretty good though. Again the lack of public areas was an issue after the show there was nowhere that you could get a seat for a drink. Very crowded and few seats. This ship is very poorly designed and this view was shared by many guests of more than one nationality. One English lady said “For a beautiful new ship how do they get it so wrong?” That sums it up. There were long queues at guest reception at all times. Unfortunately we had occasion to complain about several issues including returning to our cabin one night to find someone’s luggage in our room. This was met flippantly with a ....it’s not your luggage question..... when my husband went to reception about it there was a very distressed Italian man gesticulating about his lost luggage and when my husband approached, the staff member gave him the hand and said he’s busy, upon which my husband said if this is about luggage, then I have it! The public area toilets weren’t serviced well with a lack of soap and toilet paper. Hand sanitizer wasn’t enforced esp when entering food areas. I remember on the Poesia there were staff at the entries making sure this was done. Had occasion to speak to the Voyagers club woman. What a rude pig of a woman she is. Excursions were disorganised with us finding ourselves on mixed language buses even thought we were at the meeting point well before time. Other English speaking were on English speaking buses so we looked like we were the leftovers. Annoying. Also the timing was ridiculous with our bus always last even though all guests were onboard. In Muscat we were half hour past the time of the Mosque being open because of this. Rome Baroque tour was good with a good guide. We didn’t see Marseille as apparently weather didn’t permit docking although the weather appeared fine and sunny. We docked at Toulon instead which is a little village. Nice enough but not Marseilles. Some people had booked independent tours in Marseilles so they forfeited. Whilst the MSC excursions are more expensive and not always fantastic, we felt that it’s a safer option as if there are any issues like this the MSC are liable. Khasab is a total waste of a day. There is nothing here except a few shops all with the same stuff, and all run by Indians. It’s a grotty little nothing. Don’t know why they even dock here. We had a long stop and yet a port like Heraklion we only had four hours. The queue to re board at Khasab was two hours standing in the sun as they only had three tenders operating for five thousand people. Tempers were frazzled to say the least. Unfortunately for us we are booked on MSC again next year but only seven days. We traveled on MSC Poesia in 2011 and this was a good experience compared to Bellissima. On the basis of this cruise, had we not already booked, we will never use MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
The Ship: A brand new, gleaming white ship. I was in awe of the size as I walked towards the harbour at how high she sits above the water. The embarkation in Genoa as absolutely seamless. Basically no queues and excellent service. From ... Read More
The Ship: A brand new, gleaming white ship. I was in awe of the size as I walked towards the harbour at how high she sits above the water. The embarkation in Genoa as absolutely seamless. Basically no queues and excellent service. From arrival to boarding it took about 15 minutes. There were plenty of check in staff, so i have no idea why there have been so many people complaining on the forum about embarkation being stressful. Issued with room card and wrist band which we could use to open doors and pay for goods, an excellent idea. Once onboard security was quick and easy to get through. Initially we were asked if we wanted to avail of package upgrades, but because we already had premium plus drinks package all we did was politely decline. I can see why some people think there is a "hard sell", but we didn't experience that. You can choose to just walk on, stop stressing out! In photos and videos I got the impression that the ship looked a bit tacky in places, but I couldn't have been more wrong. It really is very tastefully done and looks beautiful in all areas. The layout of the ship is excellent, easy to navigate and has interactive screen throughout to help you find where you are going, make bookings and see what is happening each night. Plenty of lifts and never waiting more than a minute or two for one to arrive. Deck areas are nicely laid of and plenty of places to lounge in. I tended to find the aft (Horizon Pool area) of the ship a bit quieter and more chilled, especially on a day at the dock. We had access to the aurea package members only 'Top 19 Solarium Deck' which was nice. Its a little quieter and has plenty of loungers if you want to chill out. The only thing I would say is the MSC could make it feel a bit more special. Some plants and greenery wouldn't go astray to give it a more exclusive feel and the service here wasn't always very good to be honest. There is no bar, you have to order from the attendant or go to the "pantry" which looks like a little kitchen and i found this a bit odd. Dining: Ok people, the food on board is incredible. Let's start with the Marketplace Buffet. I really do not understand all the moaning about "lack of choice" and so on. Seriously I never found myself wanting, which begs the question, what do some people want!!?? I found all the found tasty, fresh and plentiful. They put a lot of pride into onboard cooking and food presentation. From the mozzarella factory to the breads, cakes, pizza and beautiful pastries etc. If anything it appears that a lot of people are just downtright greedy and wasteful gluttons. Try a little of everything, but waste less people! Yes, the Marketplace can be busy at peak times, but a top tip is move to the rear of the ship and you'll find lots of space, emptier buffet points and a more calm atmosphere. We ate 50/50 between the assigned restaurant and speciality restaurants. Both were fantastic. The lighthouse restaurant had great set menus and plenty of selection. Service was top notch, we never had to ask for service, they always anticipated our needs. Top tip is to go slightly earlier, about 1900 and you'll find it less busy and bag a seat by the amazing aft full height windows. We tried The Butchers Cut and teppenayki restaurants, both had fantastic service and it was well worth the extra supplement - you're on holidays, spoil yourself! **DRINKS PACKAGE** we took the premium plus package and I have to say it was well worth the money! We had whatever we wanted, when we wanted it. Everything is included on it. Everything. Even if you're not a big drinker I think it's worth it. We had champagne/cocktails in the champagne bar before and after dinner every night. We got to know the champagne bar staff well and they were absolutely incredibly good to us. We tried every cocktail on the menu, Moet and Chandon, Veuve Cliquot etc, I really can't think why you wouldn't get the drinks package!? Entertainment and activities: There is so much to see and do on board, particularly at night that you really do need to be well prepared. I suggest planning your evening carefully around theatre shows, dinner, galleria light shows and Cirque du Solei. The evening along the Galleria were my favourite. It's a real riot of colour and fun. Lots of music and dancing made it a sociable and interactive experience. The entertainment staff were excellent. For those moaning about this being a "party ship", well you need to wise up. If you don't like the music and dancing there are plenty of places for you to go, like the jazz bar (Sky Lounge) or the British Pub. You're on holidays, enjoy yourself and embrace there relaxed European vibes.... or alternatively go on a Cunard cruise if you're worried you might have fun, good forbid! Cirque at sea was a great experience. The purpose built theatre was wonderful and the shows incredible. One of the evenings it was used for the MSC Got Talent show where crew members from around the world sang and danced - Don't miss this!! Honestly it was one of the most fun and enjoyable parts of the cruise, especially the Haka Dancing ships firemen from Maori. The whole crowd was wild for it. The theme nights were fun - White night, 70s night, space night and pool party - the staff put a lot of effort into making sure people have a lot of fun and you can see it when you look around and see guests dancing and smiling. Service: Again I cannot find any reason to complain here as so many feel the need to! Never once did I find myself wanting for anything. All needs anticipated and catered to. Once some of the staff got to know my name they greeted us personally. Plenty of people on deck taking orders for drinks and atttending to all needs. On a side note it's not all about who you see, it's what you see. The ship is spotlessly clean, shining and well maintained. I never once saw a grubby surface or dirty public area. Well done to all behind the scenes staff. Recommendations: book the aurea package if you want access to the spa, it's well worth it! Great facilities and really relaxing. Because I had this package I rarely got off the ship and spent most port days here chilling out. One of the nicest spa areas i have ever used. Ignore the hard sells in the spa and you'll be good. The Sky Lounge seems to be very under used which is a shame. Head there for unique cocktails and great service with special treats! We didn't travel with children, but I think my nieces and nephews would have really enjoyed this ship and I'd love to take them some time. Great places for kids to be entertained all day. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
OK, The ship, absolutely beautiful and huge!!! We have cruised twice before with royal Caribbean and Carnival but this ship leaves the rest in its wake. The cabins were great, I travelled with my husband and my 6 foot teenage son and we ... Read More
OK, The ship, absolutely beautiful and huge!!! We have cruised twice before with royal Caribbean and Carnival but this ship leaves the rest in its wake. The cabins were great, I travelled with my husband and my 6 foot teenage son and we had enough room although we did have a balcony. The beds were so comfy I dreaded leaving it behind. Also the shower room was bigger than any we have had before. Now dining, anyone that says there was not enough to eat must have been on a different ship than we were! The market place was open all of the time serving salads, chips, burgers, pasta, pizza etc etc, I just don't understand the complaints about the food. We ate in the restaurants at breakfast and for our evening meals. No the portions in the restaurants were not American size portions, its an Italian ship so Mediterranean food and portions. In saying that the food in the restaurants was beautiful and changed every evening. We had the Aurea experience and if possible I would go Aurea or Yacht Club. No queuing for embarkation or restaurants as you get anytime dining. Cirq de Soleil meal and show were definitely worth the money although once we went to the normal nightly entertainment I couldn't get my husband and son to go to another one!! Service was fantastic, I read somewhere on here that you don't have to pay the tips at the end, no you can have them removed but why? The staff were happy, attentive, helpful! Why wouldn't you tip? For the 3 of us the tips added were approx £200, I can remember exactly but no way would I have cancelled them, so just DON'T!!! Get off in Marseilles, it was our favourite. Approx £10 each for a transfer into the town, coffee shops, little side streets with wall out, really enjoyed it. Pompeii was worth the money although take plenty of water, 40 degrees when we were there, really interesting. Went to the beach when in Valetta, 19Euros each for the bus. Could have stayed a little longer, you get around 3 hours on the beach after travel. All in all we had a blast, it's what you make of it. I was really apprehensive before w went because of the reviews but I shouldn't have been worried. One thing, the market place is a bit of a cattle market and as one other person mentioned on here, watch out for the rude French. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Where do i start lovely shiny new ship comfy cabins and thats where the compliments stop staff no idea what they doing the ship is full of rude passengers who shove and push you in any queue i had one grab the tings for food out my hand ! ... Read More
Where do i start lovely shiny new ship comfy cabins and thats where the compliments stop staff no idea what they doing the ship is full of rude passengers who shove and push you in any queue i had one grab the tings for food out my hand ! These were not British people but other nationals one guy took the whole row of sun-beds with the cushions to reserve them this is at 7am arguing with the pool staff who removed them all inclusive drinks are like acetone and if you upgrade to premium package the run out after 3 drinks of your brand ! the buffet well if u like pizza burgers and hotdogs all day and all night this is the ship for you food repetitive and the deserts tiny and limited total chaos on board then theirs the excursions well they cancelled one of my trips booked by accident i went right down within minutes of booking and when i tried to cancel / transfer to another trip on tuesday for Thursday they told me i had to give 48 hours notice ! Well thats 48 hrs and i had booked it seconds ago but no they wanted 50 percent cancellation charge ! So we went on the trip the entertainment is awful for a new boat compared to other new boats who were out standing always some thing to do the boat rocks from side to side all the time even in calm Waters last night the coat hangers battering in the wardrobe drove us insane we had to take them all out so if you get sea sick take some pills With you the casino tiny compared to others i wont cruise msc again was first and the last ncl and royal Caribbean so much better Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
This was a 7 night cruise and our 8th (7th with MSC, 1 with RCI). We traveled with our cousin and his wife. My husband and I stayed over in Milan the night before boarding - it's a 90 min train trip to Genoa and a 10 min walk to the ... Read More
This was a 7 night cruise and our 8th (7th with MSC, 1 with RCI). We traveled with our cousin and his wife. My husband and I stayed over in Milan the night before boarding - it's a 90 min train trip to Genoa and a 10 min walk to the harbor where we dropped off our suitcases downstairs (everything was clearly marked and staff on hand to help with directions) and boarded quickly and effortlessly. The ship is beautiful and in quiet areas we could still smell the new carpets. We had a balcony cabin (9246), and the bathroom (and especially the shower) is nicer than before - no more shower curtain but a curved door. The hair dryer was fine. I took 2 plastic clothes hangers with for wet clothes to dry with fewer wrinkles. I loved the MSC for Me app - no wifi required, you can check all activities and mark the ones you would like to attend, get reminded about the show, send messages to your friends, it worked great. Table 232 during the early seating (7.30 pm) in the formal dining room was assigned to the 4 of us, and it was perfect - a square table in the back corner with the most amazing waiter - Dede. The service was great, the view perfect, the food was amazing - could not fault anything. The variety was good and portions bigger than before. Every night's menu had healthy options available, but also at least 3 deserts! I took a black cat suit, 1 pair of dressy heels and different jewelry, which was good for 3 dinners, and a LBD for the other 3 and 1 missed dinner when we came back too late in from Barcelona. My husband took a dark suit with white shirt for the 2 formal nights, and dark blue pants with button shirts for the other nights. The pool area was spacious and we received good service from the bars and waiters. We got the drinks package that we could order basically anything up to 10 euros, which was perfect for us. There was a good variety of cocktails, wines, sparkling wines etc. The music at the pools was too loud for my taste, but that's just me. There was also the odd deckchair hog, but most people just took off the stuff and shrugged when confronted when the culprits came back a few hours later. We can learn from the Europeans! The nightly free shows in the theater was very full and quite good. The Cirque du Soleil shows (we saw both!) were amazing! We went for the option of show and cocktail - 15 euro pp and so worth it. Naples - easy walk to the old town with lots of little shops. We took a ferry to Sorrento, walked around (tough walk for good views) and loved it - especially the handmade shoes. Messina, Sicily - we walked to the train station and took a 1 hour train ride to Taormina - spectacular little hilltop town with great views and pretty alleyways. Valletta, Malta - far but easy walk to the old town, which we loved. We got a map that offered 2 walking routes with good descriptions. Felt a little like Dubrovnik. The modern part of town was also beautiful with tree lined streets, clean, with nice green spaces. Barcelona, Spain - got the public bus to La Rambla, walked up to the metro, went to La Sagrada le Familia - we booked tickets in May for 10 am entry. It was amazing. We took the elevator up the one tower and walked down. Stunning. Met up with another cousin and chatted and had tapas and beer until we had to go back to the ship. Amazing day. Marseille, France - The yellow jackets were planning a protest from 2 pm, which we were warned of by a notice placed in our cabins the night before. So we just walked to the old town and took Le Petite Train to the cathedral, which was stunning. It was informative and fun. Back through the old town and back on the ship before anything happened. We received our (correct) bill in our cabin the night before disembarking. As per other reviews, we received an envelope with pictures in our cabin a few days before, which we just returned to our cabin steward, who was amazing, by the way. Back in Genoa, we disembarked with our suitcases at 8.30 am after a breakfast in the fdr and walked 5 mins to the bus station to go to Milan to get a train to Venice. We loved everyday and can absolutely recommend it. The worst of the experience was getting information from the MSC South African staff, which was very frustrating. But the ship and international staff was incredible and restored out faith. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Stunning ship. A few minor teething issues but all round excellent. Sky bar was our favourite with stunning views. Card de soleil. Two options .. a meal or cocktail. We took the latter and went to both shows. This is a must do so book ... Read More
Stunning ship. A few minor teething issues but all round excellent. Sky bar was our favourite with stunning views. Card de soleil. Two options .. a meal or cocktail. We took the latter and went to both shows. This is a must do so book as soon as you’re on board. Food really nice although buffet can be busy go to the rear and much calmer. Drinks package. You will get asked multiple times. Basic package covers a few wines , Gordon’s gin and tonic, Heineken or Amstel beer . All coffees and water .so good value. Cabin ,,, balcony on 8 floor. Large balcony so very happy .. only issue with noise coming from party night in floor below. Staff excellent .. friendly and efficient Shore excursions far too expensive. Do it yourself.we boarded I. Barcelona which is a fantastic city. During the cruise we visited Marseiile ... take free shuttle that drops of at dock entrance and walk 20 minutes to old port. From there we took le petit train (8 euro) to Norte dame for fantastic views over city. About 30 minutes to top and 10 minutes Dow. Compulsory to get off train .... about 15 mins in queue. Genoa.... walk out of terminal and pick up map for free from tourism booth. Shows a few nice walks going initially through market then heads into old town. Walk takes a casual two hours taking in all the old buildings and squares of note. Real authentic feel to the town. Naples.. ship right into town where you can get ferry to sorrento, capri etc. We have been here before so took hop on hop of bus tour. 2 routes , B route round coast far nicer and no car congestion. Approx 23 euro. Messina. Not a lot to do in the port but walk round old town. Valletta.. lift from cruise port to town cost one euro. Lovely town to walk around and sip an aperol spritzer. Walked to ferry point for sliema ... approx 3 euro return. Nice shops and a mall if interested. Lastly, In room smart assistant Zoe good for Bluetooth speaker not much more. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
I had read about MSC's Yacht Club being a less expensive rival of NCL's Haven. We had really enjoyed the Haven, but the prices are getting crazy! So, I called my TA to find a cruise in the Yacht Club. Boy, did she! We were in ... Read More
I had read about MSC's Yacht Club being a less expensive rival of NCL's Haven. We had really enjoyed the Haven, but the prices are getting crazy! So, I called my TA to find a cruise in the Yacht Club. Boy, did she! We were in the Royal Suite on the Bellissima, which wasn't even built when we booked! Also booked a Deluxe Suite for my son and his wife. Our cabin was FABULOUS! The beds were blissful. We had 2 balconies and a hot tub on our deck, which we made use of! The Yacht Club was truly relaxing and enjoyable. Everyone was friendly and wanted to ensure our experience was positive and memorable! We ate in the YC restaurant almost exclusively....we did eat in the steak house 1 night, as we had matching Black status. The bar in YC was pleasant, with hors d-oeures available and often entertainment (piano, violin, etc) playing. We didn't use the pool on top, since we had our own hot tub, but there was a cabana available for us, if we had wanted it. Appreciated the wrist band to open cabin door---I didn't have to carry anything! Food: we kept to the YC dining room. The portions are smaller on MSC, but that is actually a good thing....they are more in line with what a portion SHOULD look like, instead of the huge portions Americans are used to eating. Of course, they will bring additional or even cook up something special! (Yes, we did ask if they were going to have creme brulee, which they were not planning, but made special for us! Bend over backwards service!) AND, there was lobster on the menu one night, which has basically disappeared from other lines! The only disappointing experience we had was in the steak house--and it really wasn't a bad experience. We were full from our dinner and wanted to have our dessert sent to our room. They would not acquiesce, but they would allow us to come back later and have our dessert. I have a suspicion that if I had mentioned it to the YC folks, they would have been aghast and rectified that immediately, but it wasn't a big deal---as I said, we were full! Drinks were included and we never went to any other bar (except for the Cirq shows---we had the drink and show tickets. The drinks were horrible at the show! Just figure the cost of drink/show package as the cost of the show. Learned to take a drink from the YC bar and pass on the show drinks.) We purchased a spa package on-line and enjoyed our experiences. In fact, both of us ended up adding another massage. We did go to the thermal suite, but only once, but it was quite nice. What can I say....when you have your own hot tub on your balcony, where else do you want to be? Getting on and off the ship was a breeze when you are escorted by your butler. In fact, he escorted us to shows (allows you to walk right in and avoid the line), and although the shows only run about 30 minutes, we enjoyed the 3 we attended (and the 2 Cirq shows). The elevators even have a priority call for YC. BIG TIME SPOIL ALERT! We used to always lose weight on a cruise because we took the stairs. Nope, not this one! When the elevator comes direct and takes you direct, it is really hard to walk those stairs. I will say, that if you have someone with limited mobility issues, this is THE WAY to go. This was our first Med cruise. I loved the shore excursions (and the MSC prices if you purchase before boarding were more reasonable than other lines, I thought), but the flights are what keep me from doing overseas more often. I think I will wait a couple of years before doing that again. Or, maybe I'll do a transatlantic on either end of a cruise (guess that will have to wait until I retire!) Until then, I have already booked 2 more MSC YC cruises out of Miami. I am still looking at NCL Haven, but only because it is going somewhere I can't get MSC (or MSC is already sold out!) Thanks CC posters, for cluing me in to the Yacht Club! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Yes, MSC is a cheap price and you pay for everything on board, including water at the evening meal. We filled our water bottles up at the buffet and were able to take them off the ship and back on,. Tea and coffee available all day from ... Read More
Yes, MSC is a cheap price and you pay for everything on board, including water at the evening meal. We filled our water bottles up at the buffet and were able to take them off the ship and back on,. Tea and coffee available all day from the buffet. The meals at the buffet were of a good assortment including carvery, eastern, spaghetti, hot dogs, hamburgers, chips,soup, salads,pizza,vegetarian and plenty of desserts. We ate at the restaurant for breakfast and dinner. You could also eat at the restaurant for lunch if you prefer to dodge the buffet. There was never a time that we couldn't get a seat at the buffet. Meals of average size but you could ask for seconds. There is a steak house at extra cost. We did not have the drink package preferring to buy as we needed it because we were in port every day except one, Plenty of staff constantly there to serve you. Such a sparkling ship with the staff constantly wiping, dusting and vacuuming. At least 10 very hot spas to each accommodate 8 people with warm showers afterwards, not cold. Plenty of pool activities and fantastic childrens rope course, water tubes, etc. Embarking and disembarking very smooth and well organised. The staff were very helpful and polite. I find it hard to believe that some passengers comment otherwise. Only downfall was the at least 5 different nationalities on board which didn't help if you wanted to have a conversation with someone whilst sitting around the deck. May be this was because it was a Mediterranean cruise. We did not take the shore excursions because we found at every port there were local buses or hop on off buses which were a quarter of the price of MSC. We would definately cruise on the Bellissima again, a beautiful ship. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Dining: There is a german and spanish chef so seafood was not as good as with an italian chef. Dinners are fast, our waiter was really nice. In the free buffet (Deck 15) there is a huge choise of food, and really good quality as ... Read More
Dining: There is a german and spanish chef so seafood was not as good as with an italian chef. Dinners are fast, our waiter was really nice. In the free buffet (Deck 15) there is a huge choise of food, and really good quality as well. Embarkation: The embarkation and disembarkation was really fluent on this ship, everything went well. I recommend Park TorreSud if you want to park in Genoa, it is cheap and fast and working with MSC. (60-70 € /week) Entertainment: There are good parties at night. Apart from the free (daily 35min) theater, wich is also really good, you can try Circue du Soleil, which is 15€ + 15% /person. There are two shows for this price with coctail included, Syma and Varélia. We went on Syma, it was 42 minutes long (measured it) but I think worth the price and iunique opportunity. There are some other options to entertain yourself, but those are not so cheap. 30€/30min at bowling, or 55€/hour, or F1 racing for 10 minutes which looks amazing but also costs 10€. There is VR maze or XD cinema as well. But there are more free programs as well: football and basketball court, AQUA PARK WHICH is AMAZING, and also a climbing circle at the aqua park, which is really scary and fun. Fitness&Recreation We have gold voyagers membership club card, so we can enjoy the spa one hour for free, but it is a huge hipe. I would give 2,5/5 for it, nothing special, and there was no tea, wellness feeling, and nor outside view. The gym seems to be to small at first sight for a ship with this size, but it was not full. It is a really techie gym, powered buy technogym, eg. the running machine has an option to compete with others, etc.. Pools and Jacuzzi were good, and there were nearly always space int them :). Onboard experience: There is a really nice shopping hall inside the ship, with ~5 restaurants, swarovski stairs, very nice led ceiling with good animatoons, and phermacy. There are really good programs and big parties, we love italians:). Public rooms: Especially the theatre, the LED dome, the reception and the covered pool area were the most amazing. Also the aquapark was really really good as well. Service: Reception There is a reception guy usually in the middle, and he is simply such an idiot. We asked him about voyagers system, and he acted like we didn’t know english, but he couldn’t say a normal word, and he really liked z-s. When he said to us “Zathz not zrue” we were close to call his manager, but at the and we did. The others are helpful. Cabin The cabin boy looked liked trying to fight his depression. Animators were really nice. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Booked this cruise nearly 2 years ago. I have sailed with MSC a couple of times beforehand so I had an idea what to expect. We embarked at Genoa, as we had stayed overnight in a local hotel we boarded early so that part was very ... Read More
Booked this cruise nearly 2 years ago. I have sailed with MSC a couple of times beforehand so I had an idea what to expect. We embarked at Genoa, as we had stayed overnight in a local hotel we boarded early so that part was very easy. What we did not like was we were hassled to have our photo taken prior to passport control. We told the photographer the we did not want these as we would not buy them as we were in our travelling clothes (not a good memory) in order to get past them we eventually let them take our photos (more on this later in review) On boarding the ship we were impressed with the interior all nice and sparkling, we took our hand luggage to the cabin. First impressions very fairly positive. We got changed and quickly headed for a hot tub as we thought ship was going to get very busy later on. We headed for the buffet, seemed to be a good selection to choose from. Later on we looked at the daily program, this advised as that our 8.00pm dining time had been put back to 8.30pm, so we decided to watch the show. when the show had finished we made our way to the lighthouse restaurant on Deck 6, we met the lady at the front door and she said that we were late and the restaurant was closed. We told her that the program said dinner was at 830 but she did not know this. She called over the restaurant manager and explained the situation. he eventually let us in together with about 50 of us that had also read the program. Food was OK but portions small, as most days the food was warm but not hot. The menu makes food sound spectacular but it is as most places nice patterns on a plate with a bit of sauce applied with an upside down spoon, We went back to cabin to unpack, by this time the bed located in ceiling void was down, only problem was poor design that the ladder stopped the wardrobe door from opening (if wardrobe had been located 1 foot nearer to door the would not have been this problem) Bathroom is small but adequate, nice shower but not enough room to dry yourself. We could not find the bin at first but we eventually found it under sink by giving a panel quite a tug. As the cruise progressed we wanted to try out some of the things on offer on top deck, I wants to do the Himalayan ropes course so I got up there quite early. when it was my turn the chap said where is my blue wristband (I had no idea what he was talking about) he told me to go to reception on deck 5 to get this. (I was not happy) Later in the day I went to reception to get this wristband, reception did not know what I was talking about. I went back up top and saw a different person and he said I had to go to a little table the was hidden by the top of the slides to sign some for of waiver. (I did a ropes course of the Carnival Horizon and there was no such hassle, they even had little lockers to but your pocket stuff in as you were not allowed it on the course). I said can I leave some stuff here but was told this was at my own risk. It was soon noticed that there is a lot of charging for the extra activities. this annoyed me as I had been on the Splendida a couple of years ago and to do the bowling, racing car and 4d cinema was a fixed price of 35 euros for everyone in cabin for the whole cruise (7 days) no such luck on this, MSC operate a thing called fun pass which I think is the wrong choice of phrase. it is not a pass in any way. It is a scheme where you but so much credit a you are given a little extra for free, only trouble is that the racing car is 10 euros a go and only lasts 5 minutes so entertainment will not last long unless you have very deep pockets. the 4D cinema was excellent but again very expensive as was the 10 pin bowling. Only on the last day did I do any of the activities (my son 1 go on the racing car and each of us 1 go on the 4D cinema and boom 15 minutes later you are 25 euros worse off. A few days into the cruise there was a photo package on our bed, we had a very quick look and realised that these were the photos they had taken when we boarded, they looked awful. We put them in the pocket shelf under the TV. A couple of days later. I noticed there was a charge on our account of 35 euros from the photoshop, we went to reception to complain as we found there was also a little slip of paper in this folder that said I had to tick a box to say If I wanted them or not. The reception said that I should fill this in. I pointed out that this practice is unfair, I told them that if I want something I will go to the place, pick it up myself and go and pay for it in the standard tradition. I did say to them that if a were to leave a dirty sock in my cabin with a note inside asking for 10 euros with a tick box yes/no (same difference). Zoe (the in cabin assistant is a total waste of space, less said the better on this so called technology) Plenty of storage space in a relatively small cabin, 2 large wardrobes and a very small safe. Buffet food during the day times could be a bit hit and miss Breakfast was plentiful but the 2 downsides of the buffet are 1/ People wandering aimlessly about, not realizing that a queue is forming 2/ The button to press when you want a drink you might have to press it at least 6 times. We had the Cirque du Soleil including in our booking. It was Ok but nothing to write home about. The Galleria Bellisima is quite spectacular looking but that is about it, the tiny area where entertainment takes place is too small With such a large ship I think they need to have 3 decks of entertainment as the galleria is a huge void of space covering two floors where on smaller ships the are more bars and areas to watch something a little different. This does not exist on the Bellissima so that is a big no from me. The theatre is Ok, thankfully the shows are only 35 minutes long and too samey too much dancing. When shows finish the galleria gets packed very quickly, I found it easier to go up to deck 7 and walkalong With a ship of this I was surprised that we were bobbing up and down from Malta to Barcelona via a sea day. on board Activities via games and quizzes were virtual non existent We had the Easy package which you are limited to Heineken if you wanted a beer, Bar list state 40cl but when you get your drink you find the glass is only just over 3/4 full. We did order a smoothie but when we saw the banana they put in it, there is no way we were going to drink that. Be careful if you have allergies in the MDR as the waiters seem to be a little vague on what this means. 2 on our table had a nut allergy. so the head waiter had to really look after them as some of the items bought out DID contain nuts. My wife booked a hair appointment, she attended on time but was told she was an hour late. they did realize that they were wrong but did not apologize, to a woman getting your hair done is supposed to be a pleasurable thing, but my wife was not happy with this experience. Disembarkation was very easy. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose this cruise as it was stopping at ports we wanted to visit on dates when we wished to be away. The Bellissima is a stunning looking ship and has something for everyone. Our cabin was on deck 10 midship and was lovely with a ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was stopping at ports we wanted to visit on dates when we wished to be away. The Bellissima is a stunning looking ship and has something for everyone. Our cabin was on deck 10 midship and was lovely with a balcony, reasonable space and being a new ship did not show any signs of wear and tear. Our cabin steward Genesis was attentive, friendly and always happy to see us. He maintained our cabin beautifully and recognised a particularly special date that we celebrated whilst on board ship. At this location on the ship it was difficult to know whether the ship was moving it was so quiet with no noise from adjoining cabins or fromthe engines. Our allocated restaurant was The Lighthouse on deck 6 excellent choice for us as we had a table for 2. The menu was varied and offered something different every day to suit most requirements. Meals were well presented and of good quality. Service was excellent and the staff who served us each day at table 479 were Carissa and Abdul and are worth a special mention for their professionalism and attention nothing was too much trouble and again went out of their way to celebrate our Ruby Wedding Anniversary. Breakfast and lunch served in the Marketplace was a challenge. There was plenty of choice and something for everyone but the shear numbers of diners at any one time made the experience quite stressful. The staff were as efficient and patient as they could be given the logistics of numbers and seats available at any one time. There were good shows on board and plenty of entertainment for all ages. The musicians who played in all of the areas were first class with music choices to suit all tastes we particularly liked the Jazz trio who played each evening on Deck 16. We purchased the Cirque Soleil show and dinner at 40 euros each which was very good value for money . The show was excellent, food very good and Alwyn and his team served everything beautifully so that dinner was served before the show commenced. We have scored food at 3 because of the breakfast and lunch experience. Weather whilst on board ship was not particularly good so consequently much of the outdoors facilities were not in use. They were however very clean and well presented with water facilities to suit all tastes the water park on deck 18 would be great fun for families. We enjoyed our holiday we would cruise again but not for cruising sake but to see particular places that are included in the itinerary. We did not book MSC excursions but instead booked with local providers in Naples we did a tour if Naples and went to Pompei in a small group of 6 with a very knowledgeable guide. In Messina we did the same and rode the cable car to the top of Etna and visited Tourmina. Again an excellent excursion with small numbers and a local guide. Every other port we did our own thing and really enjoyed. This cruise met our expectations and we would consider MSC in the future provided the itinerary met our requirements. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We embarked on at Genoa. The cabin was a good size, the bed and pillows are very comfortable. Everything we needed was at hand. The bathroom although small, served our purpose. Unfortunately Zoe was unresponsive. The ship is ... Read More
We embarked on at Genoa. The cabin was a good size, the bed and pillows are very comfortable. Everything we needed was at hand. The bathroom although small, served our purpose. Unfortunately Zoe was unresponsive. The ship is beautiful and lived up to the hype. The personnel were friendly and courteous at all times. I know the waitrons and entertainment personnel work exceptionally hard in ensuring the client enjoys the experience. Our dining experience was good. We had interactive personnel which we appreciated and engaged with every evening. Food was excellent as well. We unfortunately missed out on the captain’s dinner since we attended the Circ du Solei performance which was entertaining. The buffet areas were a bit noisy, but then that is expected. We only did one excursion and that was to Pompeii, which was well organized. The downside was we were not able to enter certain sections since the operators had not informed the tour operators in their new times. We will most definitely plan our next MSC cruise Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
MSC Bellissima Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 5.0 N/A
Dining 4.5 3.4
Entertainment 5.0 3.2
Public Rooms 5.0 3.7
Fitness & Recreation 4.0 N/A
Family 5.0 3.6
Shore Excursions 4.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 3.0 N/A
Service 4.5 3.5
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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