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351 MSC Cruises MSC Splendida Cruise Reviews

I chose this cruise for the itinerary which included all the countries and ports I would like to visit. The night stop in the major ports enabled you to visit everything you needed in the time available. Better than expected For a ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the itinerary which included all the countries and ports I would like to visit. The night stop in the major ports enabled you to visit everything you needed in the time available. Better than expected For a ship with nearly 4000 passengers, there were few times int he 4 weeks when the public rooms were crowded, and with a slight adjustment in your plans you could easily avoid the crowds. It was easy to get around, with 4 sets of lifts and numerous staircases. The variety of food served, once you realized you could ordered what you wanted - if you liked 4 entrees and only one main course- just order it! The embarkation and disembark was quick and efficient. Within 20 minutes of arriving at embarkation I was in my cabin and bags arrived within 15 minutes. Faster than most business class flights! Good points The service was excellent, and any request was quickly dealt with. Our cruise included extra lectures on art and history which for the age profile of the passengers was well received. Things which needed to change to get 5 stars Strangely for an Italian ship the pasta dishes were poor, sauces were watered down. To counter that the pizzas were excellent and freshly baked. There is a gap between travel agent and MSC with regard to visas to enter the countries visited. It did not affect me (as I searched the internet before boarding) but others were stopped visiting India as a result. Not sure why ice cream was not available in buffet - did not affect my scoring, but this was important to other passengers Suggestions to people thinking about booking Consider which excursion you would like before boarding. This lets you plan your trip more efficiency If you book well in advance you may received the drinks package complimentary - one of my better decisions (says my wife) Pre-book the laundry - at only £1 per item, it is well priced and efficient (and I did not use my full quota up!!) Overall very enjoyable experience which was enhanced by the MSC staff - would definitely re-book Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We last cruised with MSC in the Med 3 years ago and to be honest I was less than impressed so I was a bit apprehensive about booking this itinerary from Dubai for my wife’s birthday. What a difference - the quality of food in both the ... Read More
We last cruised with MSC in the Med 3 years ago and to be honest I was less than impressed so I was a bit apprehensive about booking this itinerary from Dubai for my wife’s birthday. What a difference - the quality of food in both the main dining room and speciality restaurants were right up there with the very best we’ve had on other cruise lines. I can particularly recommend Butcher’s Cut steak house where you can enjoy a 3 course dinner for an additional €39 - worth every penny! Although we didn’t go to any of the shows in the theatre the entertainment around the ship was also much improved with a number of very good singers performing in different locations. One comment would be that the seats in some of the public rooms, Aft Lounge and Purple Room in particular, were a bit too much about form over function. We also spent a bit extra to book a mini-suite (#11009). The room itself was lovely with sitting area completely separate to the bedroom. Two slightly disappointing items were the bathroom (very small) and the balcony (not glass so restricted view and overhung by bridge). If this is the quality of food and service that MSC are now doing across their fleet we’ll definitely be using them again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
So this is only the 2nd time sailing with MSC (First time was on the Magnifica) and we've sailed previously with NCL, RCI, HAL, Princess, Celebrity, Costa and P&O. Overall it was a fantastic cruise! The ports visited were all ... Read More
So this is only the 2nd time sailing with MSC (First time was on the Magnifica) and we've sailed previously with NCL, RCI, HAL, Princess, Celebrity, Costa and P&O. Overall it was a fantastic cruise! The ports visited were all really interesting (See reviews later on..), the food was great and the ship fantastic. Pro's: - Cabin was one of the best we've had. It was an aft facing on deck 12. Quiet and always clean. Our room steward was amazing. It was one of the bigger cabins we've had, and the balcony was huge too. Definitely recommend this cabin - Buffet was huge, varied and we always found a seat! It was comparable to NCL and RCI, not quiet as good as Princess or Celebrity - Embarkation - We were told to arrive at 5.50pm. We flew early so wanted to leave our bags at 10am and come back later. But were told we could check in! By 10.30am we were onboard, luggage in the cabin and having breakfast! I've never had this experience before, fantastic!! - Pools (3) and hot tubs (9!!) were amazing. Rather cold due to it not being so hot, but would be great for a Caribbean cruise - Gym was perfect size, never too busy - The ship seemed to have endless lounges and bars which was fantastic. Always able to find something nice and quiet Con's: - Evening meals were a bit hit and miss. Some were good, others not so good. - That's it. Nothing else that could be classed as a "Con" Overall, for the price and itinerary I would 100% recommend MSC and this ship. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We went on this cruise as a family of six and had a throughly good time, embarkation went very smoothly in Dubai and once on the ship we were very impressed with the condition and cleanliness of the ship. We had three rooms all with ... Read More
We went on this cruise as a family of six and had a throughly good time, embarkation went very smoothly in Dubai and once on the ship we were very impressed with the condition and cleanliness of the ship. We had three rooms all with balconies which were a good size and kept very clean, the dining experience in the main dining room was excellent with great food and drink expertly served by Erry Prastiana & Neel Pratap. The breakfast and lunch in the Bora Bora also had plenty of choices to suit all taste with daily specials on offer and great staff. The bars around the ship were numerous and all the staff were very helpful and pleasant and couldn't do enough for you especially i Made Muliana. The checking out on the last evening was a bit of a nightmare with a lot of incorrect billing and an automated credit card system which is difficult to understand. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Have cruised on MSC Splendida twice, both in Yacht Club, and being impressed by the good service in Europe I haste to return to see what's new as this ship is now deployed in China. There is not much changes in the hartdware part, ... Read More
Have cruised on MSC Splendida twice, both in Yacht Club, and being impressed by the good service in Europe I haste to return to see what's new as this ship is now deployed in China. There is not much changes in the hartdware part, less Chinese than competitor ships. Most staff remain, particularly the good butlers. Heard that about 20% of staff are Chinese speaking and this helps to keep the cruise experience in a traditional shape although all passengers are Chinese and announcements are in Chinese. Great Yacht Club service remains, really helpful butlers better than the fake butlers on Silversea for example. Newspaper at choice is delivered in an original photofax format. Free minibar and drinks. Yacht Club is of course a 'ship with in ship' facility with a lot of private, never congested spaces. The service is so attentive that one is escorted to cabin and on disembarkation, even to stateroom when back from excursion. There are only less than 200 YC passengers. The YC restaurant, L'Olivio was good in Europe and is now even better in China. Not only with additional Chinese dishes, real Chinese Chinese food, not American Chinese as on many ships. In 4 days we had twice lobster, and steak is served differently each occasion. Other delicacies include sucking pig and abalone. Best cuisine, perhaps even better than the declining and cost cutting Silversea. Production shows each and every night, very entertaining. Good singers too. This is a 4-day cruise going only to Fukuoka in Japan, but the ship itself is my and possibly everyone's destination. There were almost 8 hours on shore. Alas, the 4-night trip turned out to be 5-night due to typhoon in Shanghai, but everyone is happy. MSC has taken out insurance for every passenger and they can claim hotel or flight change costs if applicable. Passengers are offered free internet for one day to manage travel matters. The additional day is of course free, as was also the waived service charge. No one can complain. Yacht Club members are offered free limosine transfer, in good cars and good service. As an old MSC customers in Europe I am happy with this in fact upgraded service. I have reason to believe that MSC in China manages better than their competitors such as Princess. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
H the same aving already taken an 8 night Cruise with the same Company but visiting Abu Dhabi and Oman, this time we wanted to see Bahrain & Quatar. We embarked at Abu Dhabi which we had already visited on our previous Crusie. ... Read More
H the same aving already taken an 8 night Cruise with the same Company but visiting Abu Dhabi and Oman, this time we wanted to see Bahrain & Quatar. We embarked at Abu Dhabi which we had already visited on our previous Crusie. Embarkation was quick & smooth. Our cabin was ready as soon as we went aboard. There has been a few changes to the ship which we had already sailed with on a Transfer Cruise . Changes for the best . 2 new theme restaurants and new larger shops. Fantastic selection in the Jewellery & Watch shop, also a vast choice of Tolietries,Make-up & Perfumes. General state of the ship is sparkling clean.Our cabin steward (Darma) was efficient & always available with a smile.Towels were changed twice daily. Bed & pillows were very comfortable and luckily we had no problems with the Air conditioning. No problems with Breakfast in our cabin. Always punctual. Also went to the La Reggia Restaurant for Breakfast. Vast selection on the Buffet & also a choice of cooked Breakfast available. Quality of food is good & variable especially in the Bora Bora Self-Service. However Dinner in the La Reggia Restaurant proved to be a disappointment. Meagre portions , rather tasteless and often just warm.Even the presentation could be improved. Service was excellent and our Waiters (Erwandi & I Putu) were always attentive and helpful. A surprise Birthday celebration by the Waiters improvising a Band was memorable ! Entertainment was very good. Beautiful Costumes ! Dancing & Singing top class in all Shows. Our day on Sir Bin Yas Island was very relaxing. Plenty of things to do . Good Self -Service lunch available. Bahrain proved alittle disappointing, Doha is in full expansion , 3 full days in Dubai were fantastic! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We booked this cruise several months ago at a Cruise Event in a local hotel. The MSC rep managed to get us a fantastic deal on a Yacht Club Cabin so we booked it there and then. We have cruised several times on other lines, but the ... Read More
We booked this cruise several months ago at a Cruise Event in a local hotel. The MSC rep managed to get us a fantastic deal on a Yacht Club Cabin so we booked it there and then. We have cruised several times on other lines, but the Yacht Club was amazing. We had a seperate check-in area. When we had completed the paperwork our butler Nadia personally escorted us to the ship which had a seperate gangway for the YC - however, my wife is in a wheelchair and there were a few steps onto the gangway so Nadia to us to where the lugguage was being loaded on via a ramp - she stopped the loading and escorted us up the ramp, through the bowels of the ship and back to the public area. The cabin was amazing but the YC service was unbelievable. They even printed out a full copy of our UK newspaper and it arrived as a bound copy every morning. The YC facilities are brilliant with a seperate cocktail lounge, deck and pools and restaturant. On the first evening, Nadia met us in the YC reception and escorted us through the ship to the private YC restaurant. Every night the sommelier would see what food we had ordered and then recommend a suitable wine - all inclusive of course. As YC guests we could get drinks in any venue on the ship. One nice touch was when we were sunbathing, waiters would come round with trays of ice-creams ! Overall the cruise was very good and we got off in most ports and used the 'hop-on' buses to see the sights - we never imagined the size of some of the cities. The entertainment was very good and tailored to the international mix of passangers- so lots of dancers, magicians etc. When we finally had to disembark it was 3.00am as we had an early flight back. Nadia was there to escort us off the ship, collect our luguage and see us on to the accessible shuttle. We cannot speak to highly of this cruise - only problem is that my wife will want to have the yacht club experience every time ! Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Really well done to the cabin stewards for a fantastic job they work tirelessly hard day and night nothing was to much trouble for them need to have a shower screen rather than a shower curtain need more t v channels for British guests ... Read More
Really well done to the cabin stewards for a fantastic job they work tirelessly hard day and night nothing was to much trouble for them need to have a shower screen rather than a shower curtain need more t v channels for British guests althogh its been a bit picky the furniture needs to be a bit lighter a little to dark but very comfortable bed ... good sound proffing houe keeping team kept everything clean always had a smile on their faces there is not enough English books in the library couldn't here the tanoy announcement in the cabin everthing was well organised considering how many passengers were on board loved the idea of a ten pin bowlig alley and the virtual Formula one car... when we first arrived and wen to the Villa Verdy restaurant we asked for a table for two although there wasn't one one the first night they went out of their way to accommodate us from the second night onwards.The trip to Sir Banni Yas Island was superb in fact all the trips we so well organised Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
the date and itinary we wanted to spend christmas in dubai,you could not fault a single thing the ship is magnificent and the staff wre wonderful, hubert and jean the pool attendants smiling and only to willing to help at 6.30 in the ... Read More
the date and itinary we wanted to spend christmas in dubai,you could not fault a single thing the ship is magnificent and the staff wre wonderful, hubert and jean the pool attendants smiling and only to willing to help at 6.30 in the morning, manuela from rumania in the early breakfast at 6 and surbessa from cape town and all of them on early brekfast smiling happy could not do enough for you,all of reception alice juliio andrea lilly to many to mention osama grm,could not fault givanni the maitre di, we did eat in the main restaurant a few times but 9.pm. is a bit late for us and 6 is to early so ate in the buffet which was incredible, and ate in the butchers cut superb, the animation team were incredible and the dace teachers wonderful dancers i know what i am talking about i was a dancer, there was something for everybody the only drawback ignorant greedy rude passengers of every single nationality, what the crew have to put up with with some of these passengers is disgusting i felt sorry for the crew most people need a lesson in manners will definately cruise with msc again and hope to cross paths with every single member of the crewxx Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We got the Fantastica experience that included 12 drinks per passenger. Even though it was in MSC's computer system, we did not get the drink vouchers as we embarked. For one reason or another the reception staff couldn't take ... Read More
We got the Fantastica experience that included 12 drinks per passenger. Even though it was in MSC's computer system, we did not get the drink vouchers as we embarked. For one reason or another the reception staff couldn't take care of the issue right away and we had to make 3 trips to the reception desk. However, that was the only issue we had. Ship: It was immaculate. Very beautiful. We liked sitting at the lobby as it was the most stunning place. Our cabin was the same as we had in other cruises. Our stewardess was always friendly and asking if we needed anything. There are no urinals in the men's bathrooms. The elevators were also packed in the evenings. We had to take the stairs most of the time, but we welcomed the exercise. Dining: We were assigned to La Reggia. We had Alejandro as a waiter, from Honduras, and he was as good as it gets. The ceviche appetizer was great as well as most meals. Only a couple of times we found some fish dishes not that great. The portions were small, but you can always order more food. We, instead, would go for a nice fresh slice of pizza at the buffet, when necessary. We also used the buffet for breakfast and I found a couple of things that I really liked. The ship was at full capacity, but we always found an empty table. Entertainment: There were 3 or 4 after dinner shows we enjoyed, such as space Odyssey. The shows were 30 minutes long. Most nights, at 11:45PM the entertainment team had funny activities at the Aft lounge. The lounge was always packed for these activities, and hard to see anything if you get there late. Bars: We usually found ourselves having coffee or drinks at La Piazzetta. We also liked the Purple Jazz bar and the sports bar. On the other hand, La Prua piano bar was uncomfortable with all the cigarette smoke coming up from the casino. I found the drink prices standard as most places. Entertainers sang/played mostly popular English songs. Kids Club: My children, 10 and 11, found the kids activities in their group geared toward the younger ones. So they would spend most of the time with us or at the pools. As a parent, I found the kids club staff very nice and accommodating. My kids looked forward to the sail away and foam parties at the water park, animated by the entertainment team. Photos: Buy the $100 package before you sail. They do not have it available during the cruise. We made the mistake of not buying it before hand. Once in the ship, you have to negotiate. I liked how Royal Caribbean had photographers as you exit the ship at each port. MSC did not have them. Wellness: My wife got her hair done and a massage. She was very satisfied and they had decent prices. Ports: We loved all the ports. We were among the first to come out to the port and the last to come back in. In Valencia and Marseille, it was cheaper and more convenient for the 4 of us to take a taxi than to buy the MSC downtown shuttle. We paid 15€ for a taxi each way for 4, instead of 46€ (2 adults and 2 kids) round trip with MSC, and we could get the taxi to go back anywhere, instead of walking back to the rendezvous place. We always went on our own and did not buy any excursions through MSC as we found them expensive. Overall, we had an amazing time. We experienced excellent service all around the ship. We don't speak Italian, but made several Italian friends. Compared to Royal Caribbean, we found some things better at MSC and some better at RC, but that was fine with us. We accepted the differences and got our money's worth. I will sail with MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We always book a nice veranda room but were lucky to be upgraded to the Yacht Club with a suite.....great room...concierge and staff couldn't have been more helpful...private butlers when ever needed. Fully stocked mini bar topped up ... Read More
We always book a nice veranda room but were lucky to be upgraded to the Yacht Club with a suite.....great room...concierge and staff couldn't have been more helpful...private butlers when ever needed. Fully stocked mini bar topped up every day for free, which along with the endless drinks package is always good......boat was on time to every port with long enough port stays to see the highlights of each town....variety of bars.....with a couple of fairly decent singers...... Yacht club fine dining was exceptional....overall an amazing 7 day cruise and relaxing time as it was after 2 weeks in Netherlands and before 5 weeks we were spending around Italy......was a little apprehensive prior to getting there as we have done 4 cruise but never with MSC..we were told they were "ok"...well id say more than ok....I would cruise with MSC anytime any where, especially on this boat. Regards everyone Westyfrompresty Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Far from the maddening crowds we selected Yacht Club for this cruise and wasn't disappointed. We were spoilt rotten by the attention and the care we received from the crew and members of the staff. We found the experience gratifying ... Read More
Far from the maddening crowds we selected Yacht Club for this cruise and wasn't disappointed. We were spoilt rotten by the attention and the care we received from the crew and members of the staff. We found the experience gratifying in every sense having sailed on this beautiful ship a couple of times before and have enjoyed every cruise we have been on. If there was a criticism they should vary the itinerary of the ship a little I have been to all the ports of call and done most of the excursions. As for the ship it was clean and well maintained we never felt crowded and always found a space to eat and when were were on deck there was plenty of sun loungers available with fresh towels. The bars held a broad selection for drinks and there was food always available. We were so impressed we have booked another cruise with MSC on the Meraviglia in the Yacht Club just to see if the experience can be beaten. Loved every moment of the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I have just recently returned from a cruise on board the MSC Splendida. I travelled with my partner and our 2 boys aged 10 and 7. We did the Mediterranean cruise from Genoa for 7 nights 27th May – 3rd June. We have cruised with MSC ... Read More
I have just recently returned from a cruise on board the MSC Splendida. I travelled with my partner and our 2 boys aged 10 and 7. We did the Mediterranean cruise from Genoa for 7 nights 27th May – 3rd June. We have cruised with MSC once before, last year on the MSC Preziosa so knew exactly what to expect. The Splendida is practically exactly the same except for some different themed bars etc. The ship looks great, very clean with some lovely areas. We again chose the Aurea experience, we all like the choice of ice creams, drinks (cocktails) and the my choice dining. The included massage is also very welcome, we walked a very long way through the week. The weather was absolutely fantastic all week. We made use of the main pool area on the top deck and the kids enjoyed the pool and made some friends through the week. They also enjoyed the water slide although on a couple of days it was out of service. We usually had no problems with sun beds. There was often entertainment. A snow\foam party and a dj when leaving Cagliari which we thought was great. Our cabin was very nice on deck 12 near the front, the sofa always converted to a bed and back again when we were out and kept very clean. The food was also very good in the restaurant with a very good selection. The kids had the choice of the children’s menu or the normal menu or something from both which they often done. We also chose breakfast in bed one morning which was delivered on time and very nice. I did chose cereal for the kids expecting this to come with milk but it didn’t. It seems I should of also ticked the option for milk, the kids wasn’t happy with me! So it was off to the buffet for 2nd breakfast. The ports of call were all very nice, on some days there was free port shuttle buses and on others it was close enough to walk or a paid service provided by MSC. These are often expensive, with the 4 of us it’s cheaper to get a taxi, and much easier too. For example the bus to Marseille would have cost the best part of 60 euro for 2 adults and 2 kids but a taxi was 20 each way. Another option is to walk to a bus stop and catch a public bus for a few Euros each. We never done any of the excursions, we chose to do this all on our own. We had fun exploring. We did do a 3-4 seater 3-wheeler thing tour of Palermo for 35 Euros. This may not be everyone’s cup of tea but was great fun. The driver whizzing through the streets and traffic stopping at all the key points of interest for the chance for a photo or to get out and take a look. There is plenty of entertainment on the ship; we didn’t do any of the shows this year. We just didn’t find the time. The kids only spent an hour or 2 at kids club; they didn’t really go much on it. I think they preferred to be with us and messing around in the pools and slide and making friends. We purchased the cabin entertainment pass for unlimited use of the F1 sim, 4d simulator and the bowling; this had gone up from last years 55 on the Preziosa to 80 euro. The kids love the bowling and probably between them had about 70 games through the week and at 6 Euros a player offers good value. It was also fun for a couple games with a beer, it’s not a full size alley. They also enjoyed the 4d sim and made use of that. The f1 car is also very good but on a couple of days it wasn’t working and on others had no sound. I think I only went on it once were it was working properly which was a shame. The f1 sim on the Preziosa is better in my opinion. We also were able to borrow a football and have a kick about in the sports area. The staff were mostly very friendly and polite, remembering our names. The restaurant Maitre d’ only letting the kids eat if they could tell him the cabin number in Italian. They enjoyed this banter. There was one waitress who remembered us from the Preziosa last year. We had a great week on the Splendida, fantastic weather and some nice places visited. It was certainly good enough to come back home and book up for August 2018 on the MSC Seafront. We all can’t wait. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We decided to book a cruise because our friends recommended and they also told us about the yacht club. The service in yacht club was excellent and even our diets (gluten free and lactose free) were professionally taken care. We ... Read More
We decided to book a cruise because our friends recommended and they also told us about the yacht club. The service in yacht club was excellent and even our diets (gluten free and lactose free) were professionally taken care. We experienced interesting excursions. Specially we would like to mentioned the excursion to Portofino when we were in the port of Genoa. The ship looks massive outside but as soon as you are inside you forget it. The design is subtly done and you can move from one beautifully decorated space to another. In my opinion the cabin's interior was rather dark, otherwise everything was fine. There was enough space for your clothes. Because of your diets we decided to dine in the yacht club restaurant every night. They could take care that our meals were specially prepared for us. Additional spice to the dining brought the play with the dress codes. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Got on in Barcelona it was raining embarkation was pretty easy room was great had a balcony we were on level 12 right in the middle we didn't know what to expect as first timers but we had a great time met some really nice people we ... Read More
Got on in Barcelona it was raining embarkation was pretty easy room was great had a balcony we were on level 12 right in the middle we didn't know what to expect as first timers but we had a great time met some really nice people we took the drinks package through our booking agents and it paid off as drinks averaged 5/6 euros each food was good shows were fine and weather was great ship was huge and lovely to walk around and find a nice sometimes quiet place to sit it had a sports bar showing all the football and boxing plenty of beds if you needed one to sunbathe staff work hard and ship started to really fill up as we neared the end of our cruise pizza was fab and there's enough variety to surely satisfy everyone we will sometime in the future do another cruise possibly in the Caribbean .Also the ports we stopped at where fine genoa and Valencia the stand out ones for us Marseille Palermo Cagliari Parma were nice just done the hop on bus tours which was fine we stayed on board at the Rome stop as been a few times and it was Sunday so we knew it would be very busy Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I embarked the MSC Splendida in Marseille on Jan 28, which was also the Chinese New Year’s day and so there was a sizeable contingency of Chinese passengers. It was actually the last night of the itinerary when I embarked, as the ... Read More
I embarked the MSC Splendida in Marseille on Jan 28, which was also the Chinese New Year’s day and so there was a sizeable contingency of Chinese passengers. It was actually the last night of the itinerary when I embarked, as the majority of guests had embarked in Genoa, so on my embarkation day I enjoyed the gala dinner and the show ended with the crew parade chanting ‘time to say goodbye’. Indeed this was the third time I cruised on this ship, similar itinerary, same class of cabin. One main reason was that I think MSC’s Yacht Club is among the best cruise experience I have had, the other was that there was not much of a choice of a European cruise in January, and I needed a cruise (now that I cruise virtually every month). Yacht Club was great because I like big ship facilities and activities, while within this ‘ship within ship’ I also enjoy a high-end service environment. The dinner tonight, the Gala, I had Foie Gras and lobster, and it was good to start the cruise this way if in a somewhat reverse order. Nowadays you can virtually choose to embark on any port of the itinerary. I chose Marseille (in theory the last port), despite inconvenience of the cruise terminal, because I wanted to stay there for a few days pre-cruise. Be aware that the embarkation port affects price due to capacity control, a good tip if you look for as better deal. The Terminal is not in town but a taxi ride from the Vieux Port costs only EUR20. The winter sea was not really rough but the ship rolls a bit the first night, and next morning we were in Genoa on a Sunday. Afterward the sea was smooth. The ports followed were Civitacecchia, Palermo, Valletta, and Barcelona, all popular ports of call. This is probably a very popular itinerary for the general cruiser, but as I have been to all these places several times I took a relaxing holiday. Indeed, the ship is my true destination. It is great that the weather was good almost the whole trip and the seas are not rough. Opinions on MSC cruises differ, particularly for North American guests. I note with interest that while last month on NCL most passengers are American and English, on this ship it is predominantly European but not particularly Italian. Thus English was the first language. But what Americans may dislike the ship for reason that it is not Americanized, this I as well as many Europeans consider it an advantage. For example, the food is very Italian, the true Italian way, not the internationalized or Americanized Italian. Not Hamburger and hotdog. It is strange that the ship’s only alternative paid dining venue is a Tex-Mex restaurant. The food may be good but the name in itself is to me a deterrent so even on a third cruise I have never tried it. I would say that the food is adequate for normal class passengers (I have tried the cuisine on Magnifica and Musica both do not have Yacht Club), and for Yacht Club it is very good. The service and atmosphere in the L’Olivio Restaurant is among the best at sea, of Silversea and Crystal standard if the food quality is less due to still a price difference. The Top Sail Lounge is great, and this is a venue open only to Yacht Club passengers. And on a warmer sunny day the buffet lunch on the 18 level outdoor terraces are memorable. These venues (including a private pool) and drinks and snack consumption there are free to Yacht Club passengers. Yacht Club boasts of butler service and they are true butlers. You have choice of newspaper, and this is not the 4 page A4 version but the photocopy in A3 of the whole of Daily Telegraph on A3 format, bounded and delivered every morning. No other ship, including Silversea and Crystal which are more expensive, delivers such service. The cabin is comfortable, the bath has a good tub and there is a walk-in wardrobe. In my opinion, Yacht Club is great value for what you pay and what you get. For me, a passenger that has cruised nearly 100 times over 30 years, I come for a relaxed holiday and the ports of call are of no importance to me. I had come to enjoy top service but also big ship facilities and spectacular shows, and I am not disappointed. The shows on MSC are among the best, a production show every night. There are, uniquely, semi-classical music performances on this ship and people enjoy it. HAL is the only other cruise line that performs classical music (on Eurodam). MSC is one of my favourite cruise lines if I want a big ship, and at Yacht I enjoyed first class facilities and services. MSC Yacht Club is among the first of ‘a ship within ship’ and other cruise lines are now doing similar. I will return. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Great value for the dollar with an interesting itinerary. Prior to departure we were given a complimentary upgrade to the exclusive yacht club. Upon arrival at the port in Barcelona, we were seated and offered champagne. After about a ... Read More
Great value for the dollar with an interesting itinerary. Prior to departure we were given a complimentary upgrade to the exclusive yacht club. Upon arrival at the port in Barcelona, we were seated and offered champagne. After about a 15 minute wait, we were escorted to the yacht club check-in area and then led on the ship by our butler. We were greeted in the concierge area of the yacht club and given basic information about the services provided. After we were given our cruise cards, we were escorted to our room. our bags arrived about 30 minutes later. We unpacked ourselves, but our butler would have done it for us. We enjoyed the private Topsail lounge area which had continental breakast and afternoon and evening hours d'oeuvres out every day. The private restaurant was very quiet, although it is located on the opposite end of the ship from the yacht club. The food was delicious offering a wide variety with many courses each evening. We chose a late dining time of 8:45 and were seated immediately each evening. We also ate breakfast and lunch on most days in this restaurant as well. the service was very good - not exceptional, but very good. It was unseasonably cold so lounging on the sun deck was not an option. The spa offered excellent value for the dollar. It was seldom very busy. We enjoyed the saunas and steam rooms. the entertainment on the ship was great, although we would have like to have heard the tenor and soprano sing more often. Disembarkation was without incident as we were escorted off the ship, picked up our luggage and put in a cab which was waiting at the terminal. We were off the ship at at the airport in Barcelona in about 45-50 minutes. We love MSC and have cruises booked for April and October 2017 already. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
When researching for an European cruise for Christmas holidays we came across this which was of quite low tariff. Having sailed in semi-luxury cruises before we were somewhat concerned about this cruise because of relatively low charges. ... Read More
When researching for an European cruise for Christmas holidays we came across this which was of quite low tariff. Having sailed in semi-luxury cruises before we were somewhat concerned about this cruise because of relatively low charges. Negative reviews certainly did not help our anxieties. Yet we decided to go on the cruise which proved we made the right choice. The ship has a nice decor and appears grand. I do not rate the food in the cruise as extraordinary and if food is your primary priority do not use this cruise. Best would be not to go in any cruise, or even any holiday and spend that money in lavish restaurants in your own city. As with any holiday there were few minor disappointments but they did not affect us. The service we received was generally good, yet we thought crew was not that friendly. They work incredibly hard though. I believe the massive workload and relatively low wages would make them somewhat frustrated. There were not many restaurants in the ship, which was OK by me. The buffet restaurants were open almost 20 hours a day and tea, coffee and water were available 24 hours a day. There were many drink packages to select depending on one’s needs. We used only one shore excursion, Rome and Vatican, which I thought was good but somewhat rushed. Other facilities and activities in the ship are generally OK. I think not having a captains announcement every morning would be a disappointment, but daily newsletter may serve the purpose. If you want a decent holiday and want value for money, this would be one of the options to consider. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This was our first cruise and we were certainly not disappointed. The ship was fantastic and all the staff were always smiling. Food was very good, all though I was surprised that they could not make a real caparchio. We had a balcony ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we were certainly not disappointed. The ship was fantastic and all the staff were always smiling. Food was very good, all though I was surprised that they could not make a real caparchio. We had a balcony cabin. Lots of space, real nice bed and I loved the balcony. Bars and restaurants are luxurious and the staff were fast to take orders and serve. Entertainment was mostly fun, but off course, some times a bit to Italian, but then again, it's an Italian ship ;-) We upgraded to Allegrissimo package and will certainly do it again. Nice that we didn't have to think about what we ordered. Only issue is the redwines. Italy makes such great wines, so they could be a better standard. Overall a fantastic holiday and we will certainly book Splendida again. about the excursions. We didn't take any, so don't know if they are good Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Value for money cruise, great service, friendly and helpful staff. Plush cabins with pleasant décor. The ship is stunning, spotless, with a great variety of venues to relax and enjoy. Dining is good, although we do miss the ability to ... Read More
Value for money cruise, great service, friendly and helpful staff. Plush cabins with pleasant décor. The ship is stunning, spotless, with a great variety of venues to relax and enjoy. Dining is good, although we do miss the ability to eat when we want with fixed time dining still being the norm and having to share a table is not what we prefer these days. However, MSC did an excellent job of matching us with our tablemates. There could be a wider range of alternative dining venues, as the Sante Fe Tex Mex, although good, is the only real alternative to the MDR. The buffet is a good size, but as with all lines can get busy and so getting a seat can be a challenge. The variety is good and so you won't starve. The opening times are also longer than I have experienced on many other lines. Photo costs are more reasonable than other lines, as are the beverage prices, gratuity is more reasonable as is the daily service fee at €9 pppd. The layout of the ship is really good and so passenger flow is excellent, only access to the Villa Verde restaurant on deck 6 can be confusing at first. Internet access is basic, but far more affordable than other lines. Although you can 'upgrade' to faster service (faster by giving your access higher priority). Entertainment is adequate with the team encouraging people to join in on many occasions, but not forcing you. Plenty of events during the cruise from a 70's 80's evening to a White Party, Gala evenings are still observed with many in formal attire and the photographers are fantastic with the results! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our third cruise on MSC Splendida and our seventh MSC cruise in total, having been twice on her sister ship MSC Fantasia and also on the Lirica and Armonia. The cruise departed Southampton on 5 October, heading towards Genoa ... Read More
This was our third cruise on MSC Splendida and our seventh MSC cruise in total, having been twice on her sister ship MSC Fantasia and also on the Lirica and Armonia. The cruise departed Southampton on 5 October, heading towards Genoa via La Coruna, Lisbon, Gibraltar and Barcelona, having set off from Hamburg two days prior. The cruise was booked via the MSC Voyagers Club Selection, which is their reward scheme. We got an incredible deal and packaged the cruise with a stay in Lake Garda and Milan before flying home. Embarkation at Southampton was quick and efficient. Our boarding time was 3pm but we were onboard by about 12:30, despite my other half having put the cruise paperwork in the main luggage and this being sent to the ship before we’d checked in! Splendida is an absolutely beautiful ship, there is no doubt about that. As we boarded the ship we were ushered in to the main atrium area, which is just absolutely stunning. There are bars on three levels, deck 5, where there is a grand piano and seating area, deck 6 where there is the mixology bar, serving all the usual drinks plus expertly crafted cocktails and deck 7 where there is the coffee bar. All of these decks are linked by two sweeping Swarovski crystal staircases, which apparently costs €5000 per step! We headed to our cabin to collect our cruise cards and found a tray of chocolate covered strawberries and a bowl of fruit in the cabin from MSC. Our balcony cabin, on deck 10 (cabin 10114) was of the usual MSC standard, with a large double bed, plenty of wardrobe and drawer space, shower room and sofa. The beds are high enough of the ground to allow you to store your suitcase underneath which is a bonus, we have been on cruises or at hotels where this hasn’t been possible. Having picked up our cruise cards we went to the buffet for a spot of lunch and were immediately greeted by a beaming smile and hello from the waiter who had looked after us at Christmas on MSC Fantasia. When you consider how many guests he must see over the year it’s quite something to be remembered. Following lunch we headed down to the piazza area on deck 6 for a glass of champagne, no surprises that the crew in there recognised us too and made a fuss of us being back. Whenever we step foot on an MSC ship, my partner and I look at each other and think ‘we’re home’. The piazza is a great area for people watching. It’s set out like a small town square with a couple of shops around the outside and iron tables and chairs on a tiled floor, with some tiled benches for extra seating. There are excellent cakes and ice creams available here (at an extra cost, depending on your drinks package) and we often skip dessert at lunch and come here for a cake and a glass of champagne for afternoon tea. Following the muster station drill it was time to change for dinner. We were on the first sitting in the La Reggia restaurant. Although we had requested a table for two we were on a table of eight, six of us English and an Australian couple, they were a great crowd therefore we didn’t look to move to a table of two, had there been one available. Every night we were nearly the last table out of the restaurant as the conversation just kept flowing between us, with plenty of laughs and discussion thrown in. Your dinner guests really can make a holiday in that respect. A lot of people seem to complain about the food on MSC. What I would say to them is don’t go with the expectation that you’re going to have steak and chips every night. MSC is an Italian cruise line, the Italians like to take their time over dinner and have up to seven courses, with an appetizer – perhaps prawn cocktail, smoked salmon or something like that, then a salad course, then soup, then pasta or risotto, an entrée, dessert and cheese. You don’t have to have every course. My advice would be to try a bit of everything though! With so much choice on the menu I do find it hard to believe that people can’t find something they like. Food is very subjective, but my favourite entrées are duck breast with sour cherry sauce or the roast prime rib of beef. Breakfast and lunch in the restaurant has altered since we first started cruising with MSC, there is now a ‘bistro’ concept in the MDR, which consists of a buffet area in addition to the a la carte options. You can order from the menu and help yourself from the buffet selections. The advantage of this is that the deck 14 buffet gets incredibly busy at peak times and it can be difficult to find a seat. In the MDR you are shown to a table and have waiter service, much more civilised. There are also items on the menu that you wouldn’t get in the buffet such as smoked salmon, eggs benedict etc. The evening entertainment was varied, and some of the theatre shows very impressive. On one night the lead singer in the show ‘Amour’ which is an opera gala was ill so this was cancelled and another show put on in it’s place. Amour was then shown in the afternoon of our final day at sea, I’m so glad we made time to go and see it; the show was really good with an amazing sound, backed by a pair of violinists and a pianist. As Splendida has so many bars and defined areas, there are so many different acts you can see. The Purple Bar was a great spot to watch Irena, a European singer who sang both English and German songs. We got to know her over the week and on our final night she actually changed her line up and sang a song from her other set that we’d told her was our favourite! The Inoteca wine bar has another grand piano, the pianist in there played a mix of songs from musicals, classical and old favourites. This is a great spot to sit and they have some wonderful wines available and will bring you some tapas to go with your wine. The service in here was excellent, with the two waiters Ivan and Ivan working well together and always with a smile on their faces. The Aft Lounge is a bit of a party venue, with a dance floor and a proper band playing the usual party type music, and the animation team having fun and encouraging people to party. In terms of the ports visited, they were all very nice with plenty to see and do. La Coruna is a very pretty town, however it turns out we visited on a local holiday day and a lot of the town was shut, with the exception of churches, museums etc. We didn’t go to the Hercules tower, although we sailed out past it and got a few good photographs from the top deck. Sailing in to Lisbon was a wonderful experience, going underneath the bridge – I was on the top deck and wondered whether we would make it underneath, there can’t have been much more than ten feet between the very top of the ship and the bottom of the bridge, or at least it seemed that way! I was sad to leave the ship as we had such a wonderful time, with no problems whatsoever. We did encounter a few English people who had decided it wasn't for them as they were used to Cruise and Maritime - MSC is a world away from CMV's offering, so I can understand why they didn't enjoy it. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Excellent & Faultless!! We booked this cruise with a group of friends [agegroup 25 - 70 English] because it included the drinks package. One couple had only cruised with NCL and we wanted them to experience different standards. ... Read More
Excellent & Faultless!! We booked this cruise with a group of friends [agegroup 25 - 70 English] because it included the drinks package. One couple had only cruised with NCL and we wanted them to experience different standards. My brother is Black membership level we are Gold so knew what to expect. We made our own travel arrangements via our personal travel agent, my brother, cruise specialist of North America Travel Services, for transportation to Southampton and return flight British Airways to LGW airport. Then booked a 9 seater Eurpoacar vehicle to transfer LGW to LBA. Embarkation was unbelievably smooth and were able to acces our cabins imediately. But, we did find it strange to have to open our cabin & fumble in the dark for our key card to activate the lighting system! Then we had 24hrs to register a credit card to the account [usually done landside at check in.]-- this needs addressing by MSC as not the best sustem BUT our only complaint on the whole cruise.Faultless! I must mention that we have cruised on Luxury cruise ships, to mid market, to freestyle - American, English & Italian. The ship is Prestine - the hygiene policy is amazing! The Inside cabin was the largest we have ever experienced. The staff were happy, with the ability to open a conversation and confiem we were having a good time. Our steward was incedibly attentive as if we had our own personal butler! asked for extra hangers -immediately a dozen New hanger were delivered - not damaged tatty hangers left by past cruisers! We have enjoyed MSC precviously but the food has never been above average - this time far, far improved.- Tip think Italian in choice and even timing - lunches fantastic. We had read the buffet at breakfast was chaotic so decided to eat less and enjoy a wake up call & breakfast in our cabin. super arrangement, always on time & coffee very good. The wake up stretch and zumba and dance classes excellent and fun! The facilities and bars were so good we only managed to make 3 shows but very good, taking into account the constraints of language. we didn't use any MSC excursions but made our own plans. However the limitations of the restricted port visits MSC are know for did not restrict our plans or sightseeeing. i.e. In Barcelona we disembarked at 8am for a leisurley stroll on La Ramblas experiencing it coming to life! I reiterate the staff were happy and enjoying their jobs.This is the essence of the passengers having a great cruise! Thank You MSC we will be back to enjoy yet another fantastic cruise! Maybe possibley organise the disembarkation better - I had to find a little fault! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
As a lifelong American, I enjoyed my European cruise on MSC Splendida VERY much. It was a peaceful, comfortable, cultured trip which I wasn't expecting due to reading previous negative reviews. I didn't encounter hoards of ... Read More
As a lifelong American, I enjoyed my European cruise on MSC Splendida VERY much. It was a peaceful, comfortable, cultured trip which I wasn't expecting due to reading previous negative reviews. I didn't encounter hoards of people who refuse to "queue". And although very sensitive to cigarette smoke, it wasn't a problem on Splendida... in fact, it was the LEAST-smoky casino of any cruise ship I've been on. (This is my 7th or 8th cruise, and all previous sailings were on Carnival or Royal Caribbean.) I was surprised that the ship NEVER seemed crowded at all. Almost all the room categories were sold out a month before sailing, so I'm not sure where everyone was. Fastest embarkation (Hamburg) that I've ever experienced on a cruiseline. The evening shows were singing & dancing. It was the same 8-or-10 performers every night, just like Carnival, so it got a bit boring and I skipped a few shows. I will say that these performers were definitely a higher caliber than Carnival's. Their dance/language training was obviously more sophisticated. (Of course, Royal Caribbean is still the best entertainment at sea, in my opinion, because I prefer the broadway-style musicals.) I'm not sure if Splendida's emcee was the cruise director or not. He didn't waste a lot of talking talking about himself... he just got right to the point, introducing the evening show. He spoke in English first, brief and succinct, then repeated it in 4 or 5 other languages. Other things that were also superior than my American cruise experiences: --No annoying announcements or sales pitches over the intercom. Awesome. --There was always room in the hottubs. Maybe it was due to cooler temps during our week. --The atmosphere on board was noticeably calmer than the rowdy Carnival cruises or crowded noisy Royal Caribbean ones. --The itinerary was ambitious, and the ship allowed more time in each port than they had previously advertised. --The wine bar gave unlimited delicious free appetizers when you purchase a bottle of wine. --I noticed the age-group was a bit older than my former cruises, which is probably why everyone seemed so well-behaved. --Didn't have to tip extra to anyone or feel obligated to provide financial support to MSC employees. MSC instructs passengers not to tip extra. $9 tip/day is billed to the cabin. The room attendants did their job efficiently. The table servers were johnny-on-the-spot and didn't get overly social, but conversed briefly if we engaged them. There was always someone waiting to serve us if we needed anything. --Formal dining room gave free bottled water to American passengers. (Each evening, you have to sign the receipt for $0.00). There weren't many stores on-board. MSC didn't try to make this cruise all about their company. It was such a noticeable difference in attitude! I really appreciated not being exposed to a hard-sell throughout the cruise. Actually, I do remember the buffet being too crowded a couple times. We took our breakfast to our room twice. Buffets on American ships have the same problem. Only 2 disappointments: --Wi-Fi was sometimes too slow to use in the cabin. It was noticeably better in the public areas, and Guest Services confirmed that. You absolutely MUST log off the Splendida system at the end of each session, then disconnect your device, or it may use up your data allocation. --The formal dining staff didn't do a song/dance during the dinners. It's okay, though... it's sometimes a bit of a "Dance, monkey, dance!" on the American cruises & their waiters probably hate being circus performers. I would definitely cruise with MSC again. No hesitation at all. Overall, I still think Oasis-class and Freedom-class ships (Royal Carib) are the best, and the Caribbean climate is warmer, but passenger behavior was better on MSC, and the European port destinations are obviously classier and safer than the poor Caribbean islands whose economies are dependent on the cruise industry. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Chose this cruise as it was booked with friends, our first time cruising .As there was a coach full of us we were taken directly to the ship Embarkation was smoother than i imagined .Cannot fault the service the staff are hard ... Read More
Chose this cruise as it was booked with friends, our first time cruising .As there was a coach full of us we were taken directly to the ship Embarkation was smoother than i imagined .Cannot fault the service the staff are hard working friendly helpful and dedicated.We mainly chose to do excursions ourselves The choice of food was plentiful freshly prepared and even at busy times we had no problems finding a table or having to queue for more than a min or two .Our Cabin was spacious comfortable and clean - cleaned dailyThe beds were so comfortable fresh towels etc. The entertainment crew were superb i cannot fault any of the staff -always willing to assist if needed with smiles !!! Chose a drinks package which is excellent value when you add up coffees cold drinks wine with dinner and the odd couple of cocktails !! .Didnt use the tv in the cabin as there was plenty to explore and enjoy on the ship .Had excellent treatment from the on board doctor and the best massages from the Spa staff . Dressed up some nights casual others Disembarking was not the best back at Southampton but still only took about as hour just found the queuing a bit troublesome due to disability Tips system - fair as it is shared and they do deserve !!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
First time with MSC and couldn't really fault. Great value taster cruise from Hamburg to Southampton on an "All Inclusive" basis. Ship is large and well laid out. Plenty of space and nowhere seemed too busy. Staff ... Read More
First time with MSC and couldn't really fault. Great value taster cruise from Hamburg to Southampton on an "All Inclusive" basis. Ship is large and well laid out. Plenty of space and nowhere seemed too busy. Staff were friendly and attentive. Never had to ask to order drinks, they were on hand throughout. Fine dining was OK and buffet very good for choice. Went to 2 or the 3 show nights which were really good, even if a little unsure of the storyline. Embarkation was a breeze and super quick. Disembarkation was slow and arduous. My only gripe. No irons so you have to pay 5 Euro plus to have a shirt ironed. Overall, and although we still prefer Norwegian, can't really fault the value of MSC. We've also travelled with RCL and actually prefer MSC. Will definitely travel again, in fact we've booked 3 more with MSC over the next 12 mths. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
MSC Splendida Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 3.3
Entertainment 5.0 3.3
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.6
Family 5.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.1
Enrichment 2.0 3.0
Service 5.0 3.8
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates 4.0 3.7

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