4 Marseille Fitness Cruise Reviews

I have cruised before, but my wife had not, and she was looking for "an over the top" experience". So I began searching for big ships doing the Mediterranean in November. MSC had a lot of ships and the Meraviglia is one ... Read More
I have cruised before, but my wife had not, and she was looking for "an over the top" experience". So I began searching for big ships doing the Mediterranean in November. MSC had a lot of ships and the Meraviglia is one of the top 10 largest ships afloat, very new, and the video was amazing. The reviews however, were anything but amazing. Like lukewarm and even negative reviews about our favorite restaurants, I have learned that most negative reviews are more about missed/too lofty expectations than reality. The biggest gripes about the Meraviglia seemed to be food and staff. Since the boat is so high tech and wondrously equipped, no one really complained about the ship. Sure enough, even our tablemates as well as others on board echoed the Cruise Critic complaints. They ranged from now having butter and iced tea (both free, readily available) to non English speaking staff who were "unfriendly". If your attitude is "I am the guest and I expect to be served", you will be disappointed. If you engage the staff with your own smile and understand they work 11 hours a day, even my first time cruising wife was amazed at how every waiter and staff person smiled back.....even when they had to say "no" (like when we were late for dinner and the gatekeeping waiter apologized saying he was not allowed to let anyone in past 7:45, so I asked him to ask for his captain, which he did, and of course, the captain, his boss, let us in). MSC offers the lowest prices afloat for the most interesting itineraries and the newest boats.....but unless you are traveling Yacht Club, you just cant expect white glove service--but you can expect politeness and cleanliness and entertainment and "service". And we got all of this and more. Dinner. We only ate at the standard Waves Restaurant. Three sittings, We were the second. The appetizers and desserts were great, the entrees, though varied were not as good and need improvement. Not to worry though because the astonishing buffet, open 20 hours a day, had stupendous selections of excellent food from simple salads, to homemade pizza, Halal and ethnic specialties, rotisserie *the roast veal carved to order was smashing), plus an on board mozzarella factory (you could see it being made) that ensured great caprese salads and more. And they changed the offerings every day! Housekeeping. In a word, perfect. No goofy doorknob hangers telling staff to clean up the room. Just press a button. Spotless. The Room. We opted for an admidships deck 12 interior cabin because my wife was worried about seasickness. The cabin was huge, with a queen plus bed, great pillows, lighting, etc And the bathroom has the best shower afloat in my experience with infinite hot water! And a blow dryer!. Staff. What a great group of waiters and support staff rom Central America to Ukraine and Africa. Just knocked themselves out to please! It surely helped that we engaged them instead of treating them like servants. Prices: For 5Euros we got any two items delivered free to our room. Drinks were 6Euros. The best ice cream and chocolate (made on the boat) were $1-3Euros. The coffee, water, tea, ice tea, etc. were all free at the buffet. So no complaints about the "extras" The experience: 32 elevators, four pools, an arcade full of shops, sky bars, full size basketball court, full size bowling alleys and a water slide that went OVER the edge of the ship, outstanding singing and dancing "Broadway" type shows and Swarovski glass staircases made onboard life hugely satisfying. The guests. Where were all the seniors? This was the first cruise I have ever been on where there were so many families, disabled people, young honeymooners, babies, kids, etc. from so many different countries. A true multi-cultural experience. Our table mates were from the Dominican Republic (an MD and his wife), honeymooners from Colombia, and a couple from Florida. A great itinerary and all of the above for $1300 for 7 nights? Yup, and we cant wait to go again! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
I would like to start off by saying that this cruise was booked whilst on-board a previous MSC cruise in the year (Voyagers Club), therefore understandably chuffed with the already discounted trip/cabin/onboard credit ect. The ... Read More
I would like to start off by saying that this cruise was booked whilst on-board a previous MSC cruise in the year (Voyagers Club), therefore understandably chuffed with the already discounted trip/cabin/onboard credit ect. The Meraviglia is huge, well planned out and therefore should provide any passenger with a pleasant experience, over the duration of the holiday not once did I see an unclean part of the ship nor did I have reason to complain about the facilities. Travelling with my wife it is fair to say that we know what we want from a holiday and can easily compare the Meraviglia to past MSC holidays! DO NOT DO THIS ! this is where we learned very quickly that this trip is going to be different in many ways. If you are willing to sail away and embrace the new you will have an excellent time..... If you natter on to your newly found friends at dinner about your last cruise and think that that the waiters will have time for you then you will probably have a terrible time... > forget that honeymoon cruise in the Caribbean or that time that you took the kids away on a cruise where you found all the fun to be had at sea! It is very hard to repeat the same experiences, my thoughts below are reasons why I state this....... 1. Technology, your granny will hate it but get used to it as the MSC is top class with scrolling information boards at every lift point (much like scrolling on a mobile phone), scan your card or wristband at the terminal to get a map, book dinner of to simply check on tonight's shows. In room TV info is just amazing with on demand movies, news, safety info and future cruising info 2. Cleanliness - Its clean and tidy, almost OCD level so don't mess up the ship or your room for that matter as your cabin man/woman will notice. 3. Entertainment - Excellent but you'll need deep wallets to get rid of the kids for an hr, 100 euros will get a arcade pass to the flight simulator and F1 car simulator and similar, the water park and high ropes are FREE though so just make sure you use this facility. 4. Adult entertainment - Cirque du soleil, I didn't know what this was at the time but just book and see the show before you board to avoid disappointment, most easily the best show that you will witness on water. SONAR was so so cool. 5. Dining, Expect busy waiters and long wait times at the bar the STAFF versus PASSENGERS ration is miss managed, the only way to have a nice little chat to staff would be the Anchor pub, and that'll be because they know that mainly English passengers go there. Strongbow will be part of your drinks package if you have it. 6. Meeting friends - Not likely, If you are really lucky to keep in touch with your allocated dinner guests and make a point of meeting up or suggesting paring up on land to do some shore excursions then maybe you will> my experiences when even trying to strike up a conversation with others are that the ship is so so big why bother as I wont see you again for the rest of the cruise, even at the voyagers exclusive party and meet the captain it was like being in the middle of a busy shopping mall surrounded by (yes like minded) strangers. Summary - I had an excellent time with my wife and can say that the ship itself is amazing and takes all week to discover each and every facility, MSC have some nice touches, ill try not to spoil all of the quirky tricks that make you feel good about being on holiday but here are two (x2) must have experiences.... A. Get up before six (6am) and walk under the dome (dome show) to see the sky and hear the morning birdsong. B. Be up on deck (poolside) when sailing away from ports to experience Andrea Bocelli's TIME TO SAY GOODBYE song (the younger cruisers will be more familiar with the film step brothers - either way its a nice touch) .......If this is your first cruise I would consider starting with other smaller ships within MSC's fleet before you go big time. Whatever you decide or if you have already booked you will have a nice trip so make the most of it and put in a little effort with others- you'll be grateful when staff remember you for the right reasons and not just because you were complaining at reception- have fun guys. Mr Lee Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
I wanted to try different company and I wanted to see different ports in the med.The cabin I had was inside cabin with a window was kept very clean,The dining restaurant and the buffet restaurant were excellent the food plenty and tasty. ... Read More
I wanted to try different company and I wanted to see different ports in the med.The cabin I had was inside cabin with a window was kept very clean,The dining restaurant and the buffet restaurant were excellent the food plenty and tasty. The staff was very nice my wife lost her hand bag and one of the cabin steward found it and handed it at the reception desk,Being a French speaking ship we wanted an excursion with English guide and the PR on the ship Irina Davydova went out of her way to help us and I want to thank her. For a ship over 20 years old it is kept very well and for the money me and my wife paid for the Cruise was more then worth it also the entertainment was very well organised with different things every night embarkation and disembarkation went very well and the security excellent on a good note Ice cream should be available at the buffet restaurant. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
I just got back from the Navigator of the Seas last week. It was a 5 day cruise out of Miami to Cozumel and Belize. There were three ladies (including to myself) who stayed in an aft Jr suite and 2 male friends who stayed in a balcony ... Read More
I just got back from the Navigator of the Seas last week. It was a 5 day cruise out of Miami to Cozumel and Belize. There were three ladies (including to myself) who stayed in an aft Jr suite and 2 male friends who stayed in a balcony room. We are all unmarried, in our early thirties and have no kids. I was the organizer for the trip and used this site for advice. Just before we left I read a lot of very negative things about this boat which worried me. Overall one of my girlfriend's and I really loved it and thought everything was great and that the ship was beautiful and clean! My other girlfriend and one of the boy's thought the service was lacking and the ship could have been better. The other boy thought it was really great but would have liked a larger newer boat (Oasis of the Seas) so that the possibility of more partying people in our age group would be higher. I will run down some lessons learned and or things that may be helpful and then go into more detail about the port days. · We stayed the night before the cruise at the Clevelander in south beach. this is a 21 and over hotel with admission to their rooftop deck for all guests. Tiny rooms (think Manhattan) but it is beachfront and has great south beach nightlife. wonderful time but NOT for people with kids (under 21 policy) or those who are light sleepers (you can hear the club and poolside bar which is open LATE). Great for people who want to do the South Beach thing you see in movies and music videos. Great for those who want to be right on the beach and be walking distance to all the shopping and Art Deco. Great for deep sleeper. · Embarkation was super easy and quick. I wanted to get there early but my friends didn't believe me when I said we could board before 2pm. One of my friends had two partial bottles of water in her carry on and they were not taken or even inspected. This method to smuggle liquor would have worked. The Suite line wasn't any faster than the regular lines the boys used. Our rooms were ready. · The boat was fully booked because of those from the canceled NCL Dawn 11/29 sailing. These people got sickening deals like 219pp balcony. · Luggage arrived by 5pmish. We used rum runners with no problem in both checked luggage and pockets of cargo pants I met a Canadian couple who took on four bottles of wine in their checked luggage with no problem. · We slapped luggage tags on two 12 packs of soda and they arrived at our rooms around 11pm after we called guest services asking about it. Clearly this is okay to do since they looked for and delivered it. · Windjammer on embarkation day was very crowded and it was hard for my friend to get a coke with her coke card. She continued to have a hard time with quick service using the coke package. She was the only one in the group with the package and occasionally got cokes for us (one here or there) with no issue from the staff. I saw couple who openly shared one coke packge. · VERY few kids onboard. Lots of Floridians and tons and tons of couples which made some of us miss our SOs at home. · Dramamine Low Drowy formula (only one to use medicine the entire time) made me super drowsy so I would take it right before bed instead of in the middle of the day. I don't know if this made a difference or not. One of the boys used the patch and stopped because of the extreme dry mouth and drowsiness. One of the girls got sick on day three on a particularly choppy day. · You can use the aerobics area in the gym for your own thing (stretching, yoga, core work) even when classes are going on. · As reported by one of the boys, the steam room in the men's area in the fitness center had some gentlemen who took advantage of the translucent steam for public "amorous" activities. (I am just saying what he saw in there, no judgment) · I took a bottle of mango wine from Belize onto the ship with no issue at all by splitting it between two emptied bottles of water. I did this because of the learnings on embarkation day about bottled water and also because the mango wine was clearly homemade and the bottle was leaking. · The ATM charges a 6.5% fee. · The boys spent most of the time in the casino and they, along with several other we met, won money during the cruise at lost it all the last night. Table minimums go as low as 4 bucks during the day. Only one non smoking day in the casino on formal night, I think. · Tender tickets were used as a crowd control measure and weren't actually collected when we went onshore in Belize which is a good thing because we never got them. · The mini golf was fun but the range is not well kept and a drainage problem left pools of water and some mildew smells. · My Time dining is a compromise. You get pretty quick service if you don't join other people (dinner in 1 hours without any rushing) but because you get a different wait staff each night the service is not as good as regular dining. We did not do reservations and never had to wait for a table because we were open to sitting with others. We met three great ladies who became subsequent dinner companions this way. Though some of my friends thought the service was spotty, (at times horrible in their opinion) they still rather that then a fixed dinner time. · Main Dining room for breakfast and lunch was slower but nice and a great way to eat a normal portion of food as opposed to the Wind jammy jammy (as we so affectionately called it) · Portofino's on day 3 was okay. Even though the place was almost empty, the pacing of the dinner was SO slow (perhaps for couple in love) that we couldn't wait to just leave. The eggplant rollatini-like appetizer and fillet with risotto was AMAZING! · When drinking outside of the room we stuck with drinks of the day for cost savings. Mojitos in Bolereos were also under 6 bucks. · The night club was surprisingly fun. In our early 30's we were probably smack in the middle of the age range. The drink of the day there changes in the night two or three times depending on the bartender which is great because you can get different things for the same low price. · Evidently they punch a hole in the seapass cards of kids between 18 and 21. I punched a hole in my card to use with a lanyard. It took the night club bouncers 5 min to verify my age before letting me in. i laughed that they though I looked anywhere near 21! · Guest Services is open 24hrs a day so we avoided the seemingly ever present lines by visiting them very late at night. · The lounge chairs on deck 12 at the back of the boat are quiet and not crowded like the pool side of deck 12 is. Great for reading while sunning. · I had three glasses of free champagne at the captain's night thing in the promenade on formal night and could have had more but three is enough for me. · The aft balcony is AMAZING and so worth the walk. We asked for and received a third lounger for the balcony from the stateroom attendant. This size room was good for three ladies. · Disembarkation was delayed. We were scheduled to disembark at 8:30 and didn't get out to the taxi stands till 10am. I guess it was a customs thing. There were only 4 border agents to process all those people. Getting a taxi was super easy. Overall it was a wonderfully fun cruise. All my friends had a great time and we met some very fun and friendly people. The ship, though clean and very pretty, kinda has a vegas look to it. I think it is probably fairly tasteful as compared to other cruise shios but when i saw the pics from my friend's time on the Oasis, the modernity of that ship really makes this and the others in the Voyager class look dated. This had no effect on my fun but i think my next cruise will be on either the Oasis or the Allure to experience what a sparkly new ship feels like. Read Less
Sail Date November 2009

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