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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I chose this cruise because it was going to Cuba. Through no fault of MSC, they could no longer go. I still decided to keep the cruise. I wished I had canceled. I have cruised about 10 time at this point, and expected the norm with this ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it was going to Cuba. Through no fault of MSC, they could no longer go. I still decided to keep the cruise. I wished I had canceled. I have cruised about 10 time at this point, and expected the norm with this one. First thing, the ship is old, there were missing numbers off the elevator buttons. There were areas on the boat, that you could see the water in the carpet. My brother went to use the men's room on the 5th floor and all the urinals were taped off and could not be used. The thermostat in my cabin was hanging off a nail. The plastic holder for the remote was coming apart. The one in my daughter's room completely fell apart so there were screws and the small plastic parts that her 17 month old son could have easily swallow. The food was horrendous. I literal spat the piece of Salomon out of my mouth. We stopped eating in the dining room after the 3rd day. The café, while there was crappy food there as well, we were able to find something to hold us over till we got to land. The ship on two of the stops, only reached the island at 12 noon and we had to be back on the boat by 5pm. The last stop, they had ferries taking us to land, we did not get to the island till minutes to 2pm and had to be back by 5pm. I never saw the cruise director, the sail away party was some canned music. The highlight of the cruise was getting to the islands The staff was mostly Hispanic and would either did not understand when you asked a question, or acted as if they did not understand, they did not smile. I had one guy speak to a gentleman right in front of me, but then held his head down and walked past me. My sister was given a glass of champagne, it was never removed from the room, we left the ship and the glass was still in the bathroom Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Great cruise staff, worked hard but everything was just very below par Entertainment was same thing every night with different costume. No new acts no variety. Drinks were so inconsistent , the same drink was made differently every ... Read More
Great cruise staff, worked hard but everything was just very below par Entertainment was same thing every night with different costume. No new acts no variety. Drinks were so inconsistent , the same drink was made differently every time. The coffee shop was simply very poor. The view from the coffee shop windows was of ladders. The same coffee ordered by us was made differently by the same barista. Not surprising just inconsistent. Food was the standard of Denny's . It was ok , just not great. The Marco Polo dining hall was just a bright cafeteria. Portion sizes were ....inconsistent. The shop was tired looking, lots of loose railings held by duck tape. Shore excursions through ship was well organised , but started 90 minutes after we were allowed to leave and we only then had 4 hours in port. Would not book through ship again Cabin was a good size and had a lot of storage. Shower was very small even by cruise ship standard and had shower curtain Met nice people, was bummed about Cuba but no onbaord credit would make us use MSC again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Like everyone else we booked this cruise to visit Cuba. Despite our disappointment, we decided to make the best of it and found we enjoyed the ports and the ship itself. Embarkation could not have been easier. And going through customs in ... Read More
Like everyone else we booked this cruise to visit Cuba. Despite our disappointment, we decided to make the best of it and found we enjoyed the ports and the ship itself. Embarkation could not have been easier. And going through customs in Key West made disembarkation a breeze. The ship is in good condition for her age and the activities and food were on par with other cruise lines. Some food we liked, other things we didn’t. We particularly did not care for the desserts overall. We only saw two of the shows, but weren’t particularly impressed. It may just be there weren’t our thing because others seemed to enjoy them. The reviews about cabin bathrooms are spot on. The showers are tiny, but there is plenty of storage for your things. Overall I would sail MSC again, but would like to try one of their newer ships with more bells and whistles. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
This was the worse cruise I have ever been on. The food was horrible. The service is horrible. The housekeeping was mediocre. The only good part was the kids club. My son was treated well and he met so many other children from different ... Read More
This was the worse cruise I have ever been on. The food was horrible. The service is horrible. The housekeeping was mediocre. The only good part was the kids club. My son was treated well and he met so many other children from different countries. The cruise was just like it was not organized. Several people had things stolen out of their luggage and no one was responsible. Customer service was really nasty and demeaning. one couple paid for an excursion and they are not from the US. The customer service told them that they did not pay for it. After a few days after we left that island they found out that they did pay for it and they were not accommodating. They wanted to pay the couple in US dollars and they were from Britain.It was just ridiculous The ship shook like the engine was going out. I could feel the vibration of the engine. It sounded like the carburetor was going out. I will never ever use this cruise line and I am going to tell everyone else not to use it. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Let me just say that I have been on more than 30 cruises and 10 cruise lines and this was by far the worst boat and cruise company I’ve ever gone with. Firstly, I walk into the room and I immediately got sick. I will preface this by ... Read More
Let me just say that I have been on more than 30 cruises and 10 cruise lines and this was by far the worst boat and cruise company I’ve ever gone with. Firstly, I walk into the room and I immediately got sick. I will preface this by saying that the boat is older (found out after booking) and I have mold allergies. I walked right to the bathroom and noticed that the shower floor was covered in mold. Our AC in the room also did not work properly and they were not able to fix it throughout the entire trip. Without the fan in the shower and without a working AC, the mold made me sick during the cruise and after. They would not move my friend and I and every time I asked if they could help, the only thing they did was have somebody throw bleach on top of the mold and attempt to fix the AC THREE times with no results. Firstly, that’s not how you fix mold especially more that’s over six months old.Secondly, going on a cruise to a hot destination and having some floors on the boat with no ac, I would not like to SWEAT in my room and be able to sleep well. Besides that, the set up of the room was what you would expect. Secondly, if you’re looking for a dining room that is flexible with what you’d like, good luck unless you get a suite and eat in the suite’s dining room. We felt like second-class citizens in the dining room compared to our friends who had stayed in a suite and were in the other dining room. We couldn’t get little side items and we couldn’t get a dinner as a smaller meal like you would be able to on Royal Caribbean and Carnival and other things of that nature. You could also tell the line was SUPER STINGY. A ravioli dinner had TWO ravioli. That’s an appetizer and when you asked for me, you had to pull teeth. My friend and I actually went to the buffet after the dining room most nights (we thought it may get better). Thirdly, no one knew the wine policy. Long story short, don’t carry it on unless you only want it the last night. You have to put it in your checked bag onto the ship. Positives: lots of dance lessons and the gym was what you need to stay active on a cruise. The state room housekeepers were also quick and efficient. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We choose this line and ship for Cuba and overnight stay. We were obviously disappointed but made the best of it. Embarkation was a breeze. Muster drill is a horror though. MSC needs to figure this out. I Did mention in my end of cruise ... Read More
We choose this line and ship for Cuba and overnight stay. We were obviously disappointed but made the best of it. Embarkation was a breeze. Muster drill is a horror though. MSC needs to figure this out. I Did mention in my end of cruise survey. It's outside in the heat, crammed with people and you have to have life jackets.... The ship is older but still nice. Elevator buttons need replacing and it's been stretched so sometimes you find a dead end or elevator that only goes up so high. I got lost a bit at first, would be nice if MSC would follow other lines and do a tour of ship to help ppl out ans lesrn their way around on embark day. Food- I've seen several bad reviews. I don't know where these ppl ate. We had anytime with our suite so ate in La Pergolia. All food was well presented and tasty. Mom's a veggie and still had food. She only said buffet needed more cooked veggie choices. Sometimes it did take longer but anyone whose been to Europe knows the dinning style is more relaxed than America. It's about the experience not rushing. I didn't like their eggs, tired twice and gave up but that's me. Pizza was good. I've been to Naples, Italy and has the real stuff so can say it was good. I had nearly everyday for snack or lunch. Gelato was good as well. Surf and Turf- we did 3rd night. Crab cake was to die for, 2 small lobster tails and steak... Very good and get the cheesecake with rum sauce... not to miss!! Caution... no tap water so you get charged for a bottle... also they do 15 percent discount on certain nights... The crew doesn't always understand English so if you need an answer or help, ask for someone who does... that's the only minor issue we ran into. Cruise Critic party was first rate (been to plenty of my 20 plus cruises on other lines) snacks, chocolate covered strawberries, drinks and cake. Just a note, the picture was not delivered to our cabin, I had to go to photo gallery and ask for it but got it without any problems and it's free. Spa, was great. I precooked a 30 min Bali message, 30 min facial and thermal suite day pass package. The girl did a wonderful job, asked if wanted harder or softer and was mostly silent. I knew they didn't have a place on receipt to add tips so took extra cash to give her. She deserved it. Eric, the cruise director was energetic and fun. Everyone we meet at party or when we did the pic with Captain always spoke to us afterwards when seeing us and was very friendly, including the captain. We ran into Benjamin, the international host, in Key West when coming back to ship and even though he was off duty, he still stopped to talk to us and another family. Ports- Roatan- I did the glass bottom boat and West end village excursion. The boat actually has a bottom piece that's under water level and Windows on both sides toy go down into, so kinda misleading but was better in my opinion. I got rum when shopping in village for 10 bucks a bottle. They didn't take it or saying anything so up to cabin with me it went. Costa Maya- We bought port pass. It gives entrance to bird aviary (with suspension bridges and you get a cup of seeds to feed various birds), chocolate factory/tour and tequila factor/tour plus use of pool without buying drink or food. Not in description is the 3 drinks you get as well at this one bar. Water, soda, virgin drinks or cocktails. Your choice. For 39 bucks it was well worth the price. Cozumel- I did the Jose Curveo tequila tasting and tour at Discover Mexico excursion. Very interesting and all. You taste 3 tequila with how to properly do it... then you get a full sized passion fruit margarita with pepper rim. Art museum and full taco bar (not in description again but a welcome find after all that booze) I recommend it. It was worth it, I just think MSC should work better to make sure they include everything in excursion descriptions. There was only 4 of us and I think more would have done it... Key West- you go through us customs.... quick look at passport and that's it. No questions about liquor or anything... I shopped here and then later went back out with dad to Kermit's for Key Lime pie. There's s Hemmingway rum distillery close to it if you want to do a tasting... It was free... Also, several cool shops in big building that include s buttery one and a cat/dog one if you are like me and need to bring a peace offering back for your fur baby. All in all, a good cruise with some minor issues. I would sail MSC again if we find a good price. I like traveling and Europe so had no problem with Mediterranean flair of MSC and honestly... if you go on a cruise and don't have a good time, that's on you. I've had issues and things I didn't like on all lines, but really it's a cruise. I've always enjoyed myself, regardless. Shows- we went first night, French Follies, 2nd night, Beatles tribute night (awesome but the guys were only on for 2 weeks) and The Greatest... Broadway hits... we skipped Adams Family (not interested) , Italian touch (too tired) and last night Abyss... so can't comment on those. I do have a review on MSC board under Armonia July 1st to 8th review if you want more detail of day to day or have questions. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
MSC Armonia had a very good itinerary in regards to Cuba, almost a 36 hour stop, unfortunately due to the US policy change, the itinerary was changed. The ship is showing its age, and it hasn't been kept as well as it should (see ... Read More
MSC Armonia had a very good itinerary in regards to Cuba, almost a 36 hour stop, unfortunately due to the US policy change, the itinerary was changed. The ship is showing its age, and it hasn't been kept as well as it should (see photos below). Food was better than average, ate at the dining room every night with the exception of one. The buffet is a bit limited. Enjoyed the minimal announcements (yes, they're repeated in four/five languages), but it's not as bad considering the minimal amount of announcements. Most of the public areas where clean (except the men's restroom at Bar del Duomo, it smelled like urine 24 hours a day!) Different show every night, and most were appealing, two of the shows needed a little help, they seemed like a high school version of a show. The ship didn't seem crowded, even though it was sold out. Embarkation and disembarkation was a breeze, and lines didn't feel congested. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. Wanted to go to Cuba but when that fell through we decided not to switch and continue. Embarkation was smooth and easy. No problem and it didn't take very long for us to get our luggage. We ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. Wanted to go to Cuba but when that fell through we decided not to switch and continue. Embarkation was smooth and easy. No problem and it didn't take very long for us to get our luggage. We had a very nice time. Our cabin steward Walter was excellent and so very very nice. He was very good to us. We loved our cabin!! We had a balcony on deck 10 and it was so relaxing. The cabin was very spacious and always clean. I think I will always get a room with a balcony from now on> I've been spoiled. . My granddaughter, who is 8 had a good time, but decided not to really participate in the kids club after the first day. Said it was too noisy and way too many kids. She loves being around other kids but this may have been a little too much. The buffet was just so so. We ate there a couple of times but I wasn't crazy about the choice of foods. You can always get a salad though so that worked out well. Dinner in La Pierloga (sp?) restaurant was better but be ready to spend about 2 hours having dinner. Service is very good. We had room service a couple of times and it worked out ok. They got our pizza order mixed up but they took care of it and it was very good. Loved the coffee bar but I think they need to add dessert, other than cookies, to it. Dessert, other than gelato and cookies, seems to be an afterthought. The gelato was excellent and should be open for after dinner also. I loved having the dessert bar on a Carnival cruise I took, it was nice to get a little treat anytime you wanted one. MSC should think about adding something like that. The entertainment was very good. They had something planned throughout the day everyday. We always did the trivia quiz with Sarah. Enjoyed the shows. My granddaughter made it a point of having us go every night. They were entertaining and had some very good singers. Movies were played in the business center all the time. NEED POPCORN!!! My only criticism about the entertainment was their so called 4th of July celebration. You can't just wear red, white and blue have someone sing the national anthem and have that be it. With, what I was told, 1600 Americans on board. They could have done a much better job of celebrating the holiday. I think they said they were going to have fireworks but I didn't see any by 10:30 or so that night. Eric the cruise the director is a treat!!! He puts a lot of energy into his job and he's very good at it. We really enjoyed him. Did the dolphin experience in Costa Maya and the Tulum excursion in Cozumel. Both were very good. It was very nice to be able to go through customs in Key West. Went super fast so we didn't have to do anything in Miami. Disembarkation was smooth. No problems at all. Overall we had a good time. I would do another MSC cruise with a different itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
First time cruise for us. Options were everywhere - but we settled on the MSC Armonia, for..... CUBA!!!!! and well overall cost. Opting for an Oceanview room, and Fantastica level. First off.... One huge turn off for us - MSC TAKE ... Read More
First time cruise for us. Options were everywhere - but we settled on the MSC Armonia, for..... CUBA!!!!! and well overall cost. Opting for an Oceanview room, and Fantastica level. First off.... One huge turn off for us - MSC TAKE NOTE: You don't need to harass your paying customers to purchase the more expensive drink packages ($189 per person to upgrade from Easy Drink - to Premium) Neither myself nor my wife, drink enough to justify the extra expense. Yet every single time I ordered a drink that was off the "Easy" menu, I was hounded by staff to upgrade. BIG Turn-off. Ok other than that one issue, the rest of the cruise was good, there were a few notable "maintenance" items - public restrooms that were out of order, wall panels behind toilets that appeared to have been ripped out of the wall. Oceanview Fantastica - Now we were warned that the overall rooms were smaller than a regular hotel. Understatement - One queen sized bed, had just enough room to squeeze around both sides, and the foot of the bed. I think the term my wife used was "Cozy" but it was comfortable for 2 people. The bathroom, now I read ahead of time that the shower was tiny. Well that is very true - if you turn around inside you will hit the curtain which will stick to you, and of course end up soaking the floor outside the shower area. The toilet was different than we have experience before; when you flush you need to close the lid, and it sounds like a jet engine going off, on occasion, you would have to wait a couple min before it would actually flush. Storage space, we were able to completely unpack 4 large suitcases, and 2 smaller carry-on bags and still had room to spare. NOTE: if you need to charge anything - there are only 2 plugs in the room, both located on the desk, beneath the mirror. The safe, and additional storage is located behind the mirror. Housekeeping staff - These guy's were phenomenal!!!! If I had to guess - they would check on your room at least 4 times a day. Once mid morning - to make your bed, and change out towels. Once mid day to tidy up - Once early evening to drop off the Daily Planner for the next port - Once mid evening to turn down your blankets, and change out any towels. Room Service - Now here is one area that was confusing - We had been told prior to the cruise that "Fantastica" level did not pay the "$8.95" for room service delivery. HOWEVER - aside from the basic continental breakfast - we were charged for the "Delivery" charge, plus gratuities. Now the Continental breakfast was good, fill out the card, and hang it on the door before 2am, and they will deliver to you at the time slot you requested. Mind you - pay attention to the time you request vs time of arriving in port. The "Hot Breakfast" morning - was ok, nothing to write home about..... Waffle, egg's, omelet, bacon, sausage, fruit plate, with coffee, and juice. Certainly more food than we expected, but was still basic. La Pergola - The more elegant of the dining rooms - we did not have the pleasure of eating here. But was informed that it was the same fare as found in Marco Polo. Surf-n-Turf - the newest addition to the ship. $35 per person for dinner. Menu was basically just as it sounds - Steak and seafood options. Once again - we did not have the pleasure of eating here. La Brasserie - Buffet - was acceptable - a typical buffet with less than flavorful food selection - and well generally people were more rude in the buffet than anywhere else on the ship. Staff were doing the best they could muster. Marco Polo - portions were well lacking - food for the most part was quite good - but seriously 2 ravioli's served on a rather large bowl? Staff here were quite good, they were friendly, and remembered everyone's names, and generally what each of us drank regularly from the first night. Pizza / Pasta Bar - Pizza, what can I say, typical Italian fair - probably one of the best meals found on the ship. However in 7 days, I honestly cannot recall ever seeing Pasta offered. Grill - Burger / Hot Dog Bar - As one of the cruise members stated - "We are Italian, we do great Pizza, but not the best Hamburgers" I shall leave it at that. Bar Del Duomo - the center for most of the interior late night entertainment. Arrive early, else there will be no seating for you. Staff were exceptional the Entertainment Cast were good, the live band was acceptable - the singer was worth the listen, even when she was singing in other languages. Rum Bar - Serving, well mostly Rum options - but also everything else, the music was a heavy Latin flair, good for dancing, and even just enjoying a Cuba-libre - or Mai-Tai. White Lion Pub - A replica of an English pub, with a concentration on higher end drinks - think Gin and on Tap beer's (best selection on the ship) only draw back - It is adjacent to the Cigar Room. If you have any allergies to smoke, not the best place to congregate. Il Lido Bar - Pool bar - more often than not this place was busy, and the general customer was rude, and discourteous to everyone else. The staff were once again - doing the best they could to keep everyone happy, while attempting to go above and beyond. Library - A good semi-quiet place to relax during most hours of the day and night Palm Beach Casino - Small maybe 100 video machines - with approximately 5 table games (1 Roulette, 1 Blackjack, 2 others (three card poker I believe)) The only place on board that Cash was gladly accepted. MSC Business Center - AKA the movie theater. Seats about 150 people and offered movies throughout the cruise. Granted they were not first run movies, but a season or two back. Teatro La Fenice - The meeting place for almost all Excursion's, as well as the live entertainment theater for nightly shows. During our cruise, 6 nights of song and dance, 1 night a Beatles tribute band. Show's were good, not exceptional - ONE note here something we noticed, as well as several other guests noticed. Most of the singing (if not all) was lip synced. Hardly noticeable, until you do, then hard not to see it happening. Overall the work, costumes, and general planning that went into each show was worth it. Quite entertaining. Shopping - Each day there were tables setup with sales on everything from souvenirs, perfume, watches, clothing to electronics. Some sales were WOW 75% off Invicta Watches..... and loads of inexpensive jewelry for your wife, mother, daughter, or significant other. In addition - there were specialized shops, a Clothes store, Pharmacy/Perfumeria, Swarovski, Effy, a Watch/sunglasses/ electronic's shop, and of course a Duty Free shop (yes alcohol can be purchased by the gallon bottle, but you will not receive it until the last night of the cruise.) Pool / Hot tub area - ok we made the mistake of crossing through here one time. Way overcrowded when at sea. The pool and hot tub area was full of kids, as was the Doremi water park area. Mind you for the most part - the kids appeared unsupervised and were left to run rampant. Aurea Spa / Beauty Parlor - Ladies, if you want to partake in any of the optional (Cost involved) treatments - Make your appointment early on in your cruise. This place books up fast. Overall cost - comparable to any land based spa / beauty parlor.... Tip - buy products from the beauty parlor to get exceptional discounts on treatments..... ($70 hair treatment was free, after an $80 purchase of specialized shampoo/conditioner/style cream) Ocho Rio's Jamaica - We opted for a "Bamboo Rafting on the Martha Brae" an hour of a slow river relaxing ride. Couple of things to note - this is probably one of the farthest commutes offered (1.5 hrs each way) so - do not expect to get any time at the port to shop. Also the planning was lacking - once the rafting experience was over, we were shuttled to a church that was locked up tight. Then one stop "Bathroom" break at a small souvenir shop, arriving back at the port with just enough time to board before departure. Grand Caymen - Stingray City - Approximately 3hr's total - 15 min bus, 30 min boat, and about an 1.5 hrs in the water. Cayman Express crew were great, informative, and helpful, drinks were available for purchase on the boat trip, As was a single changing room/bathroom. Bring your waterproof camera, a towel, and a change of clothes - oh and plenty of sunscreen. Cozumel - We opted to self tour the island - Ernesto's Rentals - $60 a day for a jeep wrangler - one word of caution - these are well used, and abused vehicles, and not up to "American Rental Company" standards. But we were able get around the island without any problems with the vehicle. Opted for a stop at El Cedral, Playa Plancar, San Gervasio, and a Tequilaria. Eastern beaches were inundated with the Sargassum seaweed, the beaches and water were turned a dark reddish brown color, and in many places smelled of rotten egg's..... Costa Maya - Once again - we opted for self tour, specifically looking for the "Maya Healing Ritual" think of it as a themed day spa. $89 per person for approximately 1.5 hrs of uber relaxing time. First a soak in a deep heated herbal bath, with a head, neck and shoulder massage. Then to the "Mayan Sweat Lodge" for a traditional Mayan song, and some history of the practice while you relax in the "sauna" type room. Then face painting time, well ok not really, but you do a white clay mask, while relaxing and another song by the local "shaman" Then off to a cold shower, and into another deep soak in coconut milk bath (ok so it is not 100% coconut milk - it does have a coconut scent, but it is mostly just hot water bath, along with some more head, neck and shoulder rubs. Lastly, the "Hammock Massage" you will be wrapped in towels, then cocooned within the hammock. where you will get an coconut oil rubdown on your arms, and leg's, then a full back of body work over by the masseuse that is laying beneath you, using their legs and feet. OMFG it was certainly an experience.... Granted it is not completely authentic, but it is still a relaxing time that you can decompress and forget the rest of the world. Afterwards, a quick drink in the complimentary lounge chairs at the white sand beach (part of the "Healing Ritual Package" chairs were free, drinks were not) Then on to the Aviary "Aviarius" - Not the greatest for to cost, but you are right in the middle of many birds, while perched atop tower's connected by swinging bridges that zigzag over the port. The birds will come sit on your hand, shoulders, arms, head.... while you offer up some feed that is given to you when you enter their world. While you traverse the Aviary, you get a chance to look down upon the Dolphin experience. Now let me tell you this - the water that the people were waiting to swim in looked absolutely filthy, the green algae was floating everywhere. (see pic's attached) Now one warning about Costa Maya - IF you opt to stay in the port, the vendor's are super aggressive. Every single shop had someone trying to drag you inside to peruse their wares. All in all - The cruise was enjoyable, relaxing, and just what we both needed, would we opt for the cruise again, yes - but we would do many things differently.... Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise due to the stopover in Havana, which, although not the fault of MSC, was extremely disappointing. We are from the UK and only received notification of this a few days before we were due to leave. The pathetic $400 ... Read More
We chose this cruise due to the stopover in Havana, which, although not the fault of MSC, was extremely disappointing. We are from the UK and only received notification of this a few days before we were due to leave. The pathetic $400 OBC no way compensated for the dreadful ports which we replaced Havana. This cruise was priced higher than the regular Islands and Costa Maya and Roatan are both resorts we have visited many times before. Having booked and paid for flights for hotels pre and post cruise we could not cancel without suffering huge penalties. However, we decided to make the best of it. Unfortunately, it was very difficult to do so due to the general attitude and culture on the ship. I was horrified by the cruise drill which was the most badly organised and shortest I have ever attended (on 40 plus cruises)! As a vegetarian I often have problems aboard US ships but this took some beating! All the food arrived lukewarm and best and we experienced long wait times. I don't think this was the fault of the staff , simply that there were just too few of them. On the second night I realised every vegetarian dish was Indian food. I do love Asian food but not everyday! I was told that was the menu that they changed for the US based cruises. One of the Restaurant Managers, whose name I won't mention on here but probably should, was bustling around doing absolutely nothing. He said he would take personal care of my food and proudly presented me with a place of overcooked vegetables with a spoonful of brown rice. I asked if I could have ravioli the following day, it's an Italian ship after all, this arrived overcooked dry and with no sauce. I couldn't eat it. This restaurant manager starting getting stroppy with me and I had to tell him to change his attitude as it wasn't appropriate. The good thing about this cruise that it was only for a week! I strongly urge readers of this to look at other options before booking this cruise line We will NEVER sail with MSC again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We are one of the people who were affected by the travel ban to Cuba. We had booked a 7 day cruise with MSC for ONLY the reason that they offered a 2-day stop in Cuba. Of course, it wasn't their fault that travel to Cuba was banned ... Read More
We are one of the people who were affected by the travel ban to Cuba. We had booked a 7 day cruise with MSC for ONLY the reason that they offered a 2-day stop in Cuba. Of course, it wasn't their fault that travel to Cuba was banned 2 weeks before our cruise but while other cruise companies offered full refunds and other great options (like moving your itinerary AND getting 50% off your cruise), MSC's "fix" was not anywhere as generous. We could have changed our itinerary (but with no fantastic perk like 50% off) and seriously considered it as other than Cuba we were not excited about our itinerary and had just done a similar itinerary last year with another cruise company. However, my husband was excited about a 48-hour excursion we had booked and paid for, so we decided to go ahead and give the cruise a try. The excursion, which was the only reason we continued with the cruise after Cuba was off the table, ended up being cancelled at the very last minute and the excursion desk at MSC was rude and cold in their response to our disappointment. At one point, my husband and I had 3 excursion employees shaming us, holding up a print out of their excursion policy and making us feel terrible. And this was after my husband had been very calm, concise and articulate ~ we weren't attacking anyone, we just wanted to salvage our cruise experience. No one at MSC expressed any concern for our disappointment and instead blamed us and made us feel stressed. We did try to keep our chin up and found a way to enjoy our time together but we will never use MSC again and encourage others to think twice before spending your hard-earned money and vacation time with a company that works with an attitude that does not put customer's enjoyment first and foremost. My husband truly feels our vacation was wasted :( and that is not a great feeling. On the bright side, the day-to-day staff on the boat was kind and helpful. They always had very good fresh fruit and bottled water was complimentary with our drink plan. The other vacationers were wonderful and many where as disappointed as we were so we at least had some sympathetic ears. The boat is small and not good for people who suffer from sea-sickness. The boat is also older, shabby and not-updated. The food was mediocre and sometimes less than mediocre. We heard many great things about other cruise companies like Royal Caribbean, Princess and Norwegian (even Carnival). All of these companies offered generous compensation to customers who had booked itineraries to Cuba and helped disappointed customers adjust to the unexpected and disappointing changes in their vacation plans. Save your money, increase your chances of a positive and fun cruise experience ~ Do Not Use MSC! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My experience on MSC was different from what I typically experience on other cruise lines but I still had a good experience. Getting on and off the ship was very easy and quick. The staff was always friendly and helpful. It was very ... Read More
My experience on MSC was different from what I typically experience on other cruise lines but I still had a good experience. Getting on and off the ship was very easy and quick. The staff was always friendly and helpful. It was very easy to navigate the ship but sometimes you had to walk through one of the dining rooms during dinner to go from point A to point B which was a bit strange. Food in the dining room was good. I was able to try new fish I had never been offered on other cruise lines. We also enjoyed the pizza and gelato. I did miss the chairs on the lower deck which is where I typically hang out. I also missed watching movies poolside. I did not observe people being chair hogs. MSC has everyone with a scheduled excursion to report to the theater. It was very chaotic and not clear what you were supposed to do when you arrived. In Ocho Rios, we did the Brimmer Hall Plantation Tour with Beach & Lunch. It was an hour drive to the plantation. The demonstrations were interesting but rather than pull us around on a trailer they could do those near the house. The plantation itself wasn't very impressive nor was the beach or lunch. I enjoyed the Best of Caymen in Georgetown. We visited a turtle farm, Hell, and a rum store. The Best of Cozumel was OK. After the English guide presented his info, the Spanish guide then repeated it all. We spent too much time at the history museum and not enough time at the chocolate museum. At the tequila store, they actually gave everyone a taste of 5 different kinds. I did not schedule an excursion in Costa Maya. It's a nice port for shopping and hanging out. I did not attend any of the evening shows. They were all music and dancing type productions. I had put in a request online for an extension cord and distilled water for my CPAP but never received any response so I brought my own. While sailing with MSC was a different experience than with other cruise lines, I enjoyed my trip and would sail with them again. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Embarkation/Disembarkation: We chose this cruise because of the overnight in Havana and because we had a very good previous experience with MSC. We were celebrating our 30th anniversary. We left out of Miami and it was the fastest and ... Read More
Embarkation/Disembarkation: We chose this cruise because of the overnight in Havana and because we had a very good previous experience with MSC. We were celebrating our 30th anniversary. We left out of Miami and it was the fastest and easiest embarkation we've experienced. Our assigned check-in time was 2:30, but since we had to be out of our hotel room at 11:00, we arrived at 11:30. We dropped off our luggage, parked the car, and walked across the street to terminal F. We had priority embarkation with our Aurea experience, but it wasn't necessary. Before noon, we were on the ship sipping a drink. we sat at the forward pool bar with the best bartender at sea, Ryan Felix! Disembarkation was just as smooth as embarkation.We were in the first group called because we chose the Aurea experience. We walked off the ship, picked up our luggage and headed to our car. We had to meet with customs the morning of Key West, so there was no customs stop in Miami. Drink Package: We had the Premium Plus package which is the most inclusive package. While we may not have drank our money's worth, and I didn't bother to do the math, it was so nice to get water, specialty coffees, smoothies, specialty bottled juices, mini bar items, and any alcoholic beverage with no worry about paying a bill. I will definitely do this again. You also save the service charge when you purchase the package prior to embarkation. An extra 15% really adds up. We gave an additional cash tip to our regular bartenders at the end of the week. Spa: After our drink, we headed to the spa to book our appointments. We each had a massage included as part of the Aurea experience and I had pre-booked the Golden Jasmine package. I definitely recommending booking spa services in advance. Even with some specials thrown in during the week, the advanced purchase prices were significantly lower. We had massages or other treatments by 4 different spa staff, and each one was excellent! The only negative I have concerning the spa is the thermal area. There is not much there and it is quite small compared to other ships. One steam room was functioning correctly along with 4 heated loungers. We usually visit this area everyday when we cruise. We only visited once on this trip. When we told staff in the spa that several features were not working they pretty much said. "Oh, well. We get it fixed and it works for little bit and then breaks down again." At least they're honest? This and the Top 13 Private Solarium are the only areas where MSC really needs to upgrade and the only real disappointment on the Armonia. My husband used the gym daily and said that it was adequate. Cabin: At 2:00 an announcement was made that we could enter our staterooms. We headed to 1225, Aurea Suite. The cabin was spacious and comfortable with a tremendous amount of storage space. We loved the walk in closet and additional cabinets. There was plenty of room to store our belongings out of sight. I still would call this a deluxe balcony, not a suite. Our stateroom attendant, Emmanuel, was excellent! He kept the ice bucket and mini bar full and our stateroom immaculate. The bed and furnishings were in good shape and very comfy. The bathroom was average, but did have a bathtub. The balcony felt slightly larger than the norm, but we wished for more comfortable chairs. The dividers rattled at night and we remedied that with a little duct tape! It is an older ship and these little things give that away. There were very loud noises from the solarium above at night that interfered with sleep. On the last day I asked one of the solarium attendants, Sean, about it and he told me that they move all of the chairs at night and clean. He seemed very concerned and said that they are to move the furniture very quietly. That night, I didn't hear a sound. I only wish that I had said something after our first night! Anytime we mentioned a concern the staff was eager and efficient in trying to resolve it. I would choose this stateroom again. I gave it a 4 rather than 5 rating because of the balcony noise and chairs and the fact that it was not a true suite. Emergency Drill: This was fairly quick and easy. We needed to carry our vests from our cabin but were not required to wear them. Guests who did not attend were required to complete it the following morning. Dining: We ate in La Pergola restaurant for dinner every night. This is the anytime dining venue for Fantastica and Aurea guests. The hostess, Brenda, was wonderful. The first evening we had dinner at 8:00. It was very busy and the tables for 2 are nearly touching. My husband has poor hearing and we could not have a conversation. I spoke with Brenda on the way out and she promised a quiet, more intimate table if we could arrive at 6:00 each night. We did and it was perfect! If you like a quiet dinner, 6:00 is a great time to eat. Our waiter was Anil. He was very attentive and efficient. He always knew to bring our bottled water and favorite wine as soon as we entered the room. He made wonderful suggestions and made sure that we were happy with everything we ordered. You are always free to order more or to change your selection if you do not enjoy your selection. The servings are smaller than on most ships serving the Caribbean, but every meal was more than I could eat! I have read complaints about both the quality and quantity of food on this ship, but we did not find that to be the case. Each meal was delicious, from start to finish. If the portions are not adequate for you, you can simply order more food. We also want to mention the restaurant manager, Gochell. Hopefully I spelled that correctly! He stopped by the table each evening to see if there was anything we needed and to ensure that we were happy with our meals and service. He was very personable and had an excellent rapport with his staff. We discovered that he will be on the Meraviglia with us in November and can't wait to see him again! Most of our meals were eaten in La Pergola. Breakfast and lunch were very good. If it was closed we ate at the buffet or had pizza. The buffet had great salad, fruit, smoked salmon sandwiches, and wraps for lunch. We didn't really eat much there. It always seemed so busy and guests served themselves. I loved the way HAL served guests at the buffet. One of the few things that can ruin a vacation is getting sick. The fewer people touching the food and utensils the better! We enjoyed the pizza, but tried the burger and fries one day and didn't care for them. The gelato was good and a nice touch on a hot afternoon! We gave dining a 4 rating rather than 5 because of the up-charge on the menu for steak and lobster as well as other items that used to be included. The regular dining room menus should be all inclusive. We also took into consideration the buffet service. Bars: The forward pool bar and staff were awesome! Be sure to ask Ryan for the world's best Bloody Mary! It really was the best one we've had! The staff will concoct just about anything you can imagine. Just ask! Some of the same crew worked at the Rum Bar in the evenings. The Rum Bar had wonderful drinks, service, and entertainment. We are early birds and light drinkers, so we didn't venture out too much at night. The San Marco Coffee Bar was also excellent. We had coffee here every morning before breakfast. They also have wonderful chocolate croissants! There is also a smoothie and juice bar located just outside the spa on the pool deck. This was often breakfast or a snack. We loved being able to grab something healthy after all of the overindulging we did! Entertainment: We almost skipped out on the shows because we had read some really harsh reviews. Don't listen to reviews!! I know that sounds funny coming from someone who is writing a review! The nightly shows in the theater were absolutely fantastic! The singers brought tears to our eyes and the acrobats were incredible. They were so good that we went twice one evening! I wouldn't miss it. It can get crowded, so get there a few minutes early. They were not taking reservations as we had read prior to our cruise. We had use of the Top 13 private solarium which came with the Aurea Experience. You can also purchase daily or weekly passes. It was OK. We love quiet and hate fighting for pool chairs, so we did appreciate knowing that we could always find a lounge chair. There was usually staff there who would get you towels or bar service. Sean was one of the attendants and was wonderful! He was eager to assist and he was such an interesting guy! There were only about 6-8 chairs in the shade at any time during the day, so it was hot! You had to arrive early to grab a spot in the shade. They need to put up some type of cover. There were only showers to cool off and handheld spritzers. Another odd thing was that we could smell sewage at times. It depended on the wind. On our last cruise with HAL, we rented private cabanas at the top of the ship. These were covered and offered 2 loungers, a table and 2 chairs with views of the water. We had an attendant and additional chairs on the sundeck for sunning. The butlers brought you beverages, food, and cold towels. They really spoiled us! We really missed this space on Armonia. As far as activities, we missed the art auctions and wine, etc. tastings that we usually enjoy on a cruise. Ports: We took this cruise to go to Cuba. We booked a private tour guide and driver for Saturday and a food tour for Sunday through Strawberry Tours . Two days into our trip, it was announced that US citizens were no longer permitted to travel to Cuba. It was very sad. I cried for 5 minutes and then decided to continue enjoying our wonderful vacation. We were shocked by the behavior of some of our fellow passengers following this announcement. They were yelling and threatening the crew. The cruise director, Miguel was physically attacked. His attacker was arrested when we arrived in port. Some passengers started a petition and lawsuit against the cruise line. We were stunned. On any cruise we know that the itinerary can be changed for any reason. It certainly was not the fault of the crew! It's just part of the deal. Cuba was a bucket list item for us and we were very disappointed, but we were on a lovely ship, eating great food, and enjoying amazing service. MSC gave each passenger a $400.00 OBC, extended our stay in Cozumel, and added Key West. That was generous and it was done quickly. I was so impressed by how well the staff conducted themselves. You could see the stress in the customer service desk staff and the shore excursion staff. They were really being abused by some guests. We only got off the ship in Cozumel. We took a cab, did a tequila tasting, and visited a few beaches. There was so much seaweed that we didn't go in the water. We like our beaches in Florida much better! We did some shopping at the port and headed back on board. We love staying on the ship in port. It's so nice and quiet! No lines for anything! Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle/ Welcome Back Party: This was the best Meet and Mingle! Miguel, the cruise director, and Carlos, the activities director, hosted. There was such a nice selection of finger foods and drinks, as well as a beautiful cake. It was nice to meet some of the staff and the new cruise critic friends we talked with online. We were glad to bump into familiar faces during our vacation. I definitely recommend that you take part if there is a Meet and Mingle on your cruise! Miguel and Carlos had a group picture taken and gave each of us a copy as a gift. The welcome back party was also very nice. There was plenty of champagne, photos with the captain, and wonderful live jazz music. The saxophone player was so talented! I'm sure that was just too much information, but I tried to answer the questions that I had before our cruise. We really enjoyed both of our MSC cruises and are looking forward to sailing on the MSC Meraviglia in November. It will be our first Yacht Club experience and we are really looking forward to it! I wouldn't hesitate to sail on this ship again! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I continue to read negative reviews of this cruise and I’m left scratching my head. I guess each trip is what you make of it but MY experience on Armonia was excellent. The ship was spotless, classy, and not a spot of rust to be seen. ... Read More
I continue to read negative reviews of this cruise and I’m left scratching my head. I guess each trip is what you make of it but MY experience on Armonia was excellent. The ship was spotless, classy, and not a spot of rust to be seen. The crew was attentive and courteous and our cabin stewardess constantly kept the cabin clean. The food was the best that I have ever had on a cruise and the drinks (I had the Easy package which included drinks up to $6) were excellent. The itinerary was fantastic since it included two days in Havana. Cuba is a magical place with friendly people, old American cars, and beautiful Spanish architecture. I believe that MSC has made a customer for life. I would not hesitate to book this same cruise again or any other MSC ship. Don’t believe the negative reviews and experience it for yourself! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We had an amazing cruise. I give a 5 star for everything. If I had listened to some of the reviews, I would have missed out on this amazing experience. We were the last cruise that was able to go to Cuba and I can express how fortunate we ... Read More
We had an amazing cruise. I give a 5 star for everything. If I had listened to some of the reviews, I would have missed out on this amazing experience. We were the last cruise that was able to go to Cuba and I can express how fortunate we were. We were given a really great room that had a window at the front, and a window at the side. There was a king and a pull down bed in the front room and a sofa bed in the other. The entertainment was top notch. Our teenagers insisted that we go to the shows each night (we didn't miss one). There were all good but our favorite was the Adam's family show. The food was amazing. Seriously, I think the pizza was the best I ever had. The gelato was amazing. We ate in the Marco polo dining room every night and the dining staff took great care of us. Our housekeeper kept our room spotless. If someone has a complaint about this ship, the food, the entertainment, the staff, or anything else, they really don't deserve to go on a cruise. What I liked most was that this was full of people from all over the world-who all went to see Cuba. Arriving in Havana was one of the most exciting experiences of my life (and I travel a lot) They had to translate into 5 different languages, and I like that. We made new friends from Australia and the Philippines. We enjoyed the pub quiz. Karaoke was fun too- the multi talented staff speak so many languages! I wish i had done the dance lessons that the entertainment staff hosted. We missed not having comedy, but you can't make it funny if you have to translate it so I didn't mind that there was no comedy. We did the Hemingway Tour in Havana, and it was so interesting. Our guide was terrific. We got to see outside of Havana, Hemingway's house, and the village where he fished and you do start to understand how poor the people are in Cuba so I am sad that cruises from the USA won't be going there any more. (if you ever get to go- bring money to be generous with! The average Cuban lives on $20 a month! And bring cat food for the street cats you will see, toiletries because people need it, toys for the kids, crayons, whatever- the people appreciate it!. We gave a young man a soccer ball that we brought with us. He was so happy to get one!). The ship may be a bit older but it is fine. I went on Norwegian epic on spring break and did not enjoy it any more than I enjoyed this cruise. It was different but also amazing (I have cruised on Carnival Paradise, Carnival out of Jacksonville, Norwegian Epic and Bahamas celebration, and I loved every cruise I have been on, but this was a particularly special experience. If you are spoiled and a difficult person, don't go on this cruise. The staff are too nice and you don't deserve it. But if you are an adventurous person who likes to meet people from different cultures, and you are a nice and easy going personality, then go! I nearly cancelled our trip because of some of the reviews, and I would have been so sorry if I had. One of our top 10 trips ever! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Decided to try MSC because I liked the sail/stop schedule. Big mistake. HUGE. The ship belongs in the bone yard. Very tired. Balcony doors don’t open. Air conditioning doesn’t work. TV and Internet is a joke. Entertainment is ... Read More
Decided to try MSC because I liked the sail/stop schedule. Big mistake. HUGE. The ship belongs in the bone yard. Very tired. Balcony doors don’t open. Air conditioning doesn’t work. TV and Internet is a joke. Entertainment is horrendous. The food is terrible all the way around, only second to the deplorable, disingenuous leadership of the ship who have no interest in hearing about your issues let alone resolving them. Avoid this ship and cruise line at all cost. It was a complete and utter nightmare from making the booking to settling the bill. This company should stick to transporting what they are good at and it’s not people. Service is clearly not in their DNA. I would not sail with MSC again if it was free. Traveling with a group. We all share the aforementioned sentiments. It was so disappointing to meet up each evening as a group and to have nothing but horror stories to share. I don’t typically write bad reviews but felt compared to share. This should have been one of the most memorable trips for the books. Unfortunately, the memories will not be as I’d hoped. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We booked the cruise because of the 2 days in Havana and we enjoyed the full cruise as well. We had sailed on the Poesia a couple of years ago and we liked the Armonia cruise more. The food was definitely better on the Armonia. The ... Read More
We booked the cruise because of the 2 days in Havana and we enjoyed the full cruise as well. We had sailed on the Poesia a couple of years ago and we liked the Armonia cruise more. The food was definitely better on the Armonia. The Hotel Director on the Armonia went above and beyond and most of the Senior Staff were very friendly and outgoing. Our cabin steward did a good job and we liked our cabin. A major problem I had was with the layout of the ship. I have a small mobility scooter and between different areas of the ship there are a lot of raised bars on the ground. Each time I drive over one it jolts my body and I ended up with a really painful back and really sore spasms. I had to take pain pills and muscle relaxants the whole time. I tried going on the outside deck to get from one end of the ship to the other but it was often blocked off for some reason. The doors are not automatic either and I often had to wait for someone to come along so I could go to the buffet or to get to an elevator. When I told the Hotel Director he was sympathetic and was aware of the problem. He did send me a nice souvenir to cheer me up. Can't beat the value of MSC. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
My first cruise but my wife's seventh we chose this at fairly short notice because we wanted to visit Cuba. Getting on and off the ship were a breeze, we boarded early it took us a total of about 20-30 mins from when we entered the ... Read More
My first cruise but my wife's seventh we chose this at fairly short notice because we wanted to visit Cuba. Getting on and off the ship were a breeze, we boarded early it took us a total of about 20-30 mins from when we entered the terminal until we were on the ship. Just please remember it's a small ship not a mega ship, a great place to unwind and de-stress, having said that there are enough things for kids to do as well. It was a wonderful first cruise for me and my wife said the best she's been on by far, she been on them all. There were a lot of Europeans, South Americans and Aussies on board which made it more fun for us, learning about them and their Countries. MSC converts we are, can't wait for the next one, sooner rather than later i hope. Cabin was nicely laid out, bathroom was large with a bath and the balcony was a good size. Everything was spotlessly clean from day 1 until we left the ship. Our cabin steward, Anna, was amazing nothing too much trouble and always had a smile on her face. We dined almost exclusively in La Pergola which was very good, praise to the Manager and Host Brenda who were brilliant all the time. The food was excellent every meal, in fact after the 3rd Day we had trouble choosing, the Manager asked if we trusted him? We did and he chose our meals almost every day from the on and he didn't disappoint us once. We ate at the buffet on the day we got there and the roast beef was very good. All bars and other eating areas looked to be good as well. The shows were good and thankfully kept fairly short, which in my opinion was all the better for that. Now to the Service we had an extraordinary experience with all staff on board. They were so nice, helpful and happy even when people gave them a hard time for seemingly nothing. There are several people who deserve a special mention, Manooj one of the Officers, Anil Singh and JackyLou Natagoc from the Bar Service staff were all outstanding .They really made the cruise that bit more special with their attitudes, happy faces and outstanding personalities and service. Ports and excursions were all great from cooking Jerk Chicken in Ochos Rios and Mayan Tour in Cozumel. The best port by far for us was Havana, the people were wonderful and really made the place a joy to visit. We did a Hemmimgway Tour which was informative and a lot of fun we had a blast. The second day we did a Classic Car ride in a pink 50's Bel Air again this was great and our driver Jesil took us all over the city. The Architecture of the older buildings in truly wonderful, the Russian era buildings were not as beautiful, of course, however the gave a great insight into how people lived. The Flea Market is a must do it's a short walk from the ship, out of the Port turn left about 5 blocks. There are some wonderful souvenirs here paintings, leather goods, t-shirts and so much more. Don't forget some cigars and rum from a legitimate source. Also please take some candy for the kids there, you give one piece out and 20 more show up. We are also going to take some kids clothing on our next visit. Havana, Cuba and it's citizens have their problems but what a joy they were to meet. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
We went on the 7 day RT cruise from Miami. Never cruised with MSC before and actually had pretty low expectations from the reviews, but thought we would go with an open mind because we really wanted to see Cuba and it was a good price plus ... Read More
We went on the 7 day RT cruise from Miami. Never cruised with MSC before and actually had pretty low expectations from the reviews, but thought we would go with an open mind because we really wanted to see Cuba and it was a good price plus we got the Easy drink package and WiFi for free. They will match your status with other lines, so be sure to do that before you go. We flew into Fort Lauderdale and used the ships transfer to Miami. FLL is a Southwest hub and the prices were better than Miami. We had to wait at the airport for a while before they had a full bus to take to Miami. Next time, I would probably just taken a taxi or Uber. One thing I want to note here is that the porters at the Port of Miami are extremely pushy regarding tips. Our bus driver told us the porters would pick up the luggage after it was unloaded and we didn't have to do anything. The porters made us bring it to them and put it on the cart for them and then held their hands out for a tip to "make sure it got to the cabin safely". This sounded like extortion to me and it does not make the cruise lines look very good (even though the porters are Port Authority employees). Our dinner mates were from London and they were appalled by how the porters acted. Embarkation in Miami was super smooth, walked right on the ship around 1:30 pm. This was the easiest embarkation we've ever experienced. I think it helped that they did not process your credit card at embarkation, which was different than I'd experienced before, there was a machine on board that you used to link your card with your room, again super easy, just different. This cruise was only 25% Americans so there were many languages spoken. All announcements were made in at least 5 languages. Also, a lot of people did not show up for the mandatory safety drill, which was frustrating waiting for the crew to round them up while we waiting for them outside in the heat. We had ocean view cabin 9271, it seemed similar to OV on Royal Caribbean's smaller ships. The bed was only a double, I would have liked to had a king, but it was fine, and we knew this before we boarded. The air conditioning in this room did not work very well, I had to contact customer service multiple times to get it fixed, but it did get fixed, and they sent us a bottle of wine and strawberries to apologize, which was a nice touch. Our room steward was very efficient and was friendly. A plus was that we were near the rear of the ship and there was a deck with seating close to our stateroom. We had first seating in the main dining room. Since this is an Italian cruise line, I was expecting good Italian food, but I was disappointed. My husband got the New York strip steak on the standard menu every night, he said it was very good. I got different things, but nothing stands out as my favorite. The service was ok, some nights were better than others, be prepared to order dessert with your meal. We had breakfast in the dining room and it was standard, same thing every day, nothing great. We found the buffet to be always crowded and the choices very limited. But don't miss the pizza out on the pool deck, while some of the toppings were a little crazy at times (like hot dogs, tuna, and many other oddities), the cheese pizza was great, best I've ever had on a cruise. As far as shows, we only went to one and walked out, they are kind of quirky because of so many languages spoken on board. In Cuba, the ship brought in dancers that were similar to the Tropicana, which was nice for people that didn't go on the excursion. We didn't participate in many activities or entertainment. It looked like they had a nice kids program, but we didn't have any kids with us. Overall, the staff was friendly and helpful, very much the small ship feel. They are a family owned cruise line and I got that vibe. They seem to really be trying to win the American market. They are employing experienced people from other popular US cruise lines, which seems to be helping. We only took one excursion from the ship and that was a tour of Grand Cayman, it was fine, no problems, small van with good air conditioning. We went to the sea turtle farm, Governor's beach, the town of Hell (which was disappointing, just a tourist trap), and Tortuga Rum Cake factory. We loved Cuba and were so happy we were able to experience it before the travel ban went into affect. Will definitely go back if it is lifted. Disembarkation was fine, well organized. Our luggage was neatly lined up and waiting for us to pick it up when our color was called. It is important to wait until your color is called, many people did not, so they had to stand there waiting for their luggage, which caused some congestion. We took the ship's shuttle back to FLL, which was very easy since they had crew directing people at the door going out. We went into this cruise with low expectations, but it ended up being a good cruise. We like MSC better than a couple other popular US lines. As long as they have good deals, we will be back. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I Chose this boat because of all the ports it went to. First of all they give you like a 6 hr window for each island, but I said let me just go for it anyways. Embarking was smooth and pretty easy but to disembark it was a hassle. First of ... Read More
I Chose this boat because of all the ports it went to. First of all they give you like a 6 hr window for each island, but I said let me just go for it anyways. Embarking was smooth and pretty easy but to disembark it was a hassle. First of all the ship got to Miami like at 7am which everyone typically is sleeping or just waking up and all you hear is the loud speaker already telling you the process of leaving the boat and what color tags goes first ( I would have liked to wake up to a nice announcement of the typically thank you for choosing us and blah blah) but they basically are rushing you out. The boat on some floor smells like a wet rag like moldy.. My bathroom smelled like sewer or maybe the pikes were old. Overall the cabin was okay and my housekeeper was "GREAT". The food SUCKED, Your best bet was the pizza, hamburger, and hot dogs on the ship. I had the basic beverage package which included some alcoholic bevs but not all the ones I wanted to so I upgraded and they charged me a extra 15% service fee for it apart from the service fee that they charge at the end of your stay. For the drinks I had to say please put enough alcohol in it because u can tell the alcohol was watered down or idk but it just tasted like juice to me (I am not a heavy drinker) but everyone who came with me on the cruise said the same thing. Without exaggerating maybe 80% of the staff was pretty rude or maybe they just didn't like working there. A good handful of the staff that stood out just because they were so attentive and nice. (Deck 11 by the pool, Deck 5 the Bacardi bar, some of the waiters in the "Marco polo") On Sunday morning the crew members had a fire drill exercise and ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL of the announcements were made in the passengers cabins which was VERYYYYYYYYYYYYY annoying. I could keep going on about complaints but I think I've pretty much covered all the things that bothered me the most. Hope this is helpful for people who are considering Armonia. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
After baking this cruise through a travel company, i got access to the MSC traveler website. it wasnt working for the first 3 weeks! At one point I called them, and they nicely told me they could only talk to me after my travel agent ... Read More
After baking this cruise through a travel company, i got access to the MSC traveler website. it wasnt working for the first 3 weeks! At one point I called them, and they nicely told me they could only talk to me after my travel agent called them. Once the payment had been made in full, much of the information about the cruise disappeared from the website. 2 months before departure date, the itinerary appeared, showing the jamaica port had changed. The MSC Armonia is a smaller ship, but is clean and not overly fancy. They work hard to keep it clean and it seems to work. The staff is very helpful and attentive. We had a fantasia suite which allowed us to have dinner at the La Fogolata (or something like that) restaurant at the same table each day. I like that. We had the same table and waiters the whole cruise. Speaking of food, the food is prepared well and presented nicely. The portions are fancy restaurant portions. However, you can have additional food, all you do is ask at no charge. The variety was good, plus they have standard food you can order if the selections of the day don;t interest you. The buffet is open all the time, except from around 2 a.m till around 630 a.m. The buffet has everything from soup and salad, to pizza, pasta and burgers and also fruit and desert.. Drinks are $6 each or more, if you want something specific, it will be around $10 each. The wait staff is very nice and friendly in the bars. The fantasia suit is tight if there are more than 2 people in the room. There is a walk-in closet, with drawers and a shelf above the hanging space. There are built in shelves in the walls, hidden by doors, so there was plenty of clothing storage for 3 adults.(impressive) The bathroom is a typical size for a ship, however there is a deep tub. It would be tricky for someone with limited leg or hip mobility to get in and out. Lots of storage in the bathroom for toiletries. We didnt go to any of the shows. It looked like they were acrobats. Not a fan of those, so we didnt try to go. One night the cruise staff sang broadway hits with scenery showing behind. I guess that may have been fun, but not to my taste. We prebooked our excursions through the website, months in advance. The tickets were in our room the second morning. However, no description was provided. So, i remembered some of what was to be seen or done, but there was no info provided with the tickets. Once I went to the excursion desk to see if I needed a towel for the river rafting cruise, they guy assured me I wouldnt get wet! Its a river, so of course I would get wet. He didnt offer me the written info about that excursion, he just answered my question. The river tour on inner tubes was a nice way to spend the day, A few rapids, but nothing scary. And the tour guides were there to help even before you knew you needed help. great guys! When we booked our cruise we were to go to Montego Bay and I booked the zip line tour for my adult son in Montego Bay. I had done that zip line and it was awsome. MSC changed the Jamaica destination from Montego Bay to Ocho Rios without advising us in advance. I had also been to Ocho Rios in the past and was not impressed. Prior to MSC changing that destination, I booked the excursions. The Ocho Rios zip line apparently is not worth the money, and had it not been for climbing the falls, that whole excursion would have been a waste of time (according to 42 year old son). I think MSC should have handled this better, We went on the Deluxe Beach break in Cozumel. Don;t waste your money. The bus drops you off and tells you they;ll pick you up at a specified time. You are on your own to find the beach, a chair, umbrella or cabana which apparently was not included in the $90 purchase price. The cabana is $55 with a $25 refund. The cabana is a mattress that has a rubber covering (like a baby mattress) and 2 pillows. The top of the cabana is shadecloth and the sides untie to provide more shade. Rubber and sweat and skin or sand is not a good combination. Snorkling is limited to a very specific area and their mayan ruins in the ocean is man made out of concrete. We got one free drink and never saw the waiter again. The food was a buffet (they said it had a value of $30) and it was pathetic. Chicken nuggets, like McDonalds serves, noodles with what was supposed to be alfredo sauce, tiny ribs, pulled pork, and rolled tortilllas that were supposed to have pork and cheese inside, but did not. Drinks at the buffet included 4 juices, probably generic koolaid. In Havana, we did the Hemmingway and Rum tour. Interesting info about Havana and Hemmingway on the bus to the hhemmingway home. There was no guided tour of the Hemmingway estate, it was self led. The rum factory tour did not happen since the factories are closed on Saturday. We did go to a store where we could by rum and cigars. We also were taken to 2 bars for daquiri's Interesting and fun, but another MSC Cruise tour bus was also at the bars so it was really crowded and loud. Sunday we went on the Cigar and Rum tour. Remember, factories are closed on weekends. We did tour the Havana Club and they gave us a tour of the model of the rum factory. There were samples of rum. Then we went back to the store we had been to on Saturday for purchasing rum and cigars. We never got to see how cigars are hand rolled. Then, we went to one of the same restaurants from Saturday and learned how to blend cigars and rum into a delightful event. That was interesting. The casino is small. The 11th floor pool deck is where a lot happens. It is loud and crowded in the evening. We stayed mid-ship on the 10th deck and could hear the bass while walking down the hall almost to our room. The last night, they cleaned the 11th floor deck, and it was loud in our room. The cruise itself was nice, i was disappointed in their excursions and the way MSC ignored the changes to the excursions as described. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
Like many Americans, I have always wanted to see Havana, mostly because we weren't allowed to travel there. When that changed, I started making plans to find a cruise that had a overnight stay there. The Armonia sailing was 7-nights ... Read More
Like many Americans, I have always wanted to see Havana, mostly because we weren't allowed to travel there. When that changed, I started making plans to find a cruise that had a overnight stay there. The Armonia sailing was 7-nights with an overnight in Havana for less than 5-night sailings on other lines that didn't even include an overnight stop. Having just taken my first MSC cruise last December on Divina, and enjoying that one, I decided to go ahead and book. I'm glad I did because I fear that the powers in Washington will again close travel to Cuba, which would be a real shame. I hadn't been on a ship this small since my first couple of cruises, but I still managed to stay lost half the time! I really like the personal feel of the smaller ships. I'm not a fan of ships so large that you don't even have the time or energy to explore. With having only one sea day, I knew that a small ship would be perfectly adequate. Yes, the buffet is small. No, there's no separate adult-only pool area. But the inside cabin was large enough for my adult daughter and I. The shower was extremely tiny with the result that the shower curtain kept getting pushed out of the way and water soaking the bath mat (we are not super-large women). But it certainly not anything that would keep me from booking the ship again. I didn't not get a drinks package. DD isn't much of a drinker so we figured we wouldn't come close to getting our money's worth. I stuck to mostly beer during the day and wine with dinner. DD had a few frozen drinks. For such a small buffet, the selection was decent. I tend to not eat from a buffet for lunch, so usually had a burger or pizza with both being quite good. Dinner in the MDR was just OK. Nothing really great but nothing that I felt I didn't want to finish. I would've preferred another sea day, as I've been to the other ports multiple times. But I always get off the ship, and since DD hadn't sailed in over 6 years (since her honeymoon), she wanted to get out and do things. But, of course, the real purpose of this cruise was to see Havana. It was everything I'd hoped for. Beautiful architecture juxtaposed with crumbling infrastructure. Gorgeous, classic cars that, on closer look, appeared to be held together with bondo and paint. Good food; friendly people. I loved it and would go back tomorrow if I could. Actually, since I don't have any cruises booked between this October and the next, I've just spent all morning researching and pricing sailings to Cuba for next April or May. I'm just afraid that the travel window to Cuba will be slammed shut and I won't be able to return. So, if you're an American interested in Cuba, I highly recommend that you book now and go as soon as you can because we don't know what's going to happen in Washington. We did ship tours in all the ports except Havana. I typically do not do this, but we wanted to climb Dunn's River Falls in Jamaica, so booked that. Then, DD's husband wanted to buy excursions for us in Grand Cayman and Cozumel, so we did the amphibious bus in Grand Cayman, and the Best of tour in Cozumel. I'd rate both about 3-1/2 stars. For Havana, I booked all our tours with Strawberry Tours. I booked a classic car tour for Saturday afternoon and reserved the entire car (they hold 5 pax) for $99, which was less than MSC wanted for one person. We had a Barbie-pink Chevy convertible. The driver didn't speak much English, but they do point out that you're getting a driver, not a tour guide. If that's what you want, you can add that person for an extra charge. After the ride, we walked back to the ship (only getting mildly lost), showered and changed, and went for a quick dinner (it's open seating on this evening). Then back out for our "free" Nightlife tour. We went to three different bars and had a Salsa dance lesson at the second. It was a fun way to spend the evening. Drinks ranged in price from 3 CUCs to 6. Back to ship before midnight where we all went up and had pizza before bed. The next morning, we did a 3-hour walking tour of the old city, visiting 4 different public squares. It was very hot out there! I personally would've preferred a more leisurely walk with more time to stop and take photos and then less of a history lesson standing out in the sun in the squares, but our guide did try to keep us in the shade when possible. Overall, for the 2 free walking tours, it was a real bargain. I believe I tipped the guide 10 CUCs for the bar crawl and 20 CUCs for the walking tour, which involved a lot more information. I would certainly book with them again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
I’ve traveled on MSC Divina out of Miami and loved it, I can honestly say that MSC brought a new level of elegance to cruising in south Florida, but the Armonia is just not up to the standards that Miami cruisers are use to. Even the ... Read More
I’ve traveled on MSC Divina out of Miami and loved it, I can honestly say that MSC brought a new level of elegance to cruising in south Florida, but the Armonia is just not up to the standards that Miami cruisers are use to. Even the cheaper Carnival lines out of this port are better. The air conditioning didn’t work for 2 days Not just in our room but all the rooms in our section. The ship has no insulation to keep out noise. You could hear all the noise from outside your stateroom. Especially from the buffet room above us. We literally had to be given another room just to sleep in one night due to the heat and noise. For this I do give them credit. The Food was always cold and the service is not up to standards that I personally loved about MSC. Unlike the Divina, the cigar bar in the Armonia has no bar, so you have to go out looking for a waitress to get you a drink and bring it back to the cigar room. I’m in the entertainment business and my wife and I loved the shows on the Divina. Totally 1st class. The shows on the Armonia remind me of a refined high school play. This ship needs to be retired or sent to another port where the standards are not as high. We will not be cruising on the Armonia again and don’t expect to refer anyone else either. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I decided to book MSC Armonia because of the itinerary and great price.After reading the reviews I hesitated about this cruise but for my surprise it exceeded my expectations. I had a great time with the Entertainment crew, they were ... Read More
I decided to book MSC Armonia because of the itinerary and great price.After reading the reviews I hesitated about this cruise but for my surprise it exceeded my expectations. I had a great time with the Entertainment crew, they were awesome! Every night was a party, very happy, good vibes cruise. My 9 years old boy was in love with all the Youth activities, this girls were amazing and my kid loved all of them. He cried the hole morning just because he had to say goodbye. He enjoyed every dinner, show and activities with all the kids. My waiter Dewa and his team, the best ever! Good menu and tasted delicious. Beverages had a good price if you do not by the package and you will find different kind of beverages, coffee, tea, milk, juices...all included on the package. Itinerary was excellent and all ports too. Dolphin swimming at Cozumel and all silver shopping at the Costa Maya beach was the most I enjoyed. Cuba is an experience you need to have and make your own opinion. What I liked about this ship is that is was not boring at all, it was a happy environment, like a big family. If you don't like tropical music, dancing and having a good time please, do not waste your money booking this cruise. Read Less
MSC Armonia Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.7
Dining 2.0 3.2
Entertainment 3.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.3
Family 5.0 3.3
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.1
Enrichment 3.0 3.0
Service 4.0 3.6
Value For Money 4.0 3.5

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