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563 MSC Cruises MSC Divina Cruise Reviews

Our trip ended a week ago and we still have a smile on our faces from just thinking about the wonderful time we had on the MSC Divina Caribbean cruise. The whole trip from beginning to end exceeded our expectations. The staff and ship were ... Read More
Our trip ended a week ago and we still have a smile on our faces from just thinking about the wonderful time we had on the MSC Divina Caribbean cruise. The whole trip from beginning to end exceeded our expectations. The staff and ship were outstanding. Not one area can be cited as disappointing. The ship was meticulously clean, the service top notch, and the facilities were 5 star or better. The dining staff was courteous and even attended to the special diet considerations (gluten and lactose free) at our table. Every meal in the dining room was special and delicious. The buffet had food options ranging from American, Italian, Mediterranean to other ethnic foods, such as Greek, Mexican and Indian. Many different pizza options were available throughout the day. The desserts were as tasty as they were beautiful. Our balcony stateroom with balcony was spacious and clean. Our room attendant was diligent in keeping it orderly and welcoming. The towel animals were sweet to see at the end of a festive evening. The entertainment was most impressive: opera, comedy, violinists, pianists, dancing in every genre, contortionists, gymnasts, singing...every night brought a special treat to the eyes and ears. Highly entertaining and so much talent on one ship! The whole entertainment team left us with light hearts and wide grins. The Divina is a beautiful ship. We are very happy that we had the opportunity to spend a week on it. We look forward to returning to it again soon.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Went on their 2 night Bahamas cruise in May of 2014. Having sailed on more than 60 cruises at that point and also having experienced more than 15 different cruise lines, I was curious to see what I would find onboard the MSC Divina. ... Read More
Went on their 2 night Bahamas cruise in May of 2014. Having sailed on more than 60 cruises at that point and also having experienced more than 15 different cruise lines, I was curious to see what I would find onboard the MSC Divina. Realizing they are a relatively newcomer to the US Market, I was open to what I would experience. Happy to report I was pleasantly surprised by much of the experience. I'm also a high ranking loyalty guest with RCCL, CCL and CEL, so my expectations would still be high given what I know of the other dominant cruise lines in the US. Here is my quick rundown. Entertainment was actually FAR exceeding my expectations. NEVER would have imagined they have the caliber of entertainers and shows onboard MSC. Totally caught me off guard. Food was within my expectations in particular the Italian menu items, were REALLY great. Fresh made pasta, sauces, pizza- all amazing as they should be given their Italian roots. Didn't get a chance to try their optional restaurants as it's was a short cruise and they were already booked up. Buffet was good and offered lots of choices. Had to sample their Gelato, which was AMAZING and worth the extra cost. Also their coffee was really European and so great, again worth the extra cost at the lobby bar. I drink coffee only on occasion but theme I do it's an event for me so this was perfect for the experience of it just like in Europe. Stunning is a word I would use to describe the Divina. Use of Textures and color combinations really makes for a sophisticated feel and atmosphere all around the ship. Crew was friendlier than I had expected given reviews I had rest. I think they are not used to how much Americans want to talk and interact with them. Once they saw we were friendly they opened up and really began to engage us. LOVE the Captain, so friendly and sociable. You can tell he lives what he does and also that his crew is important to him. All in all I went with low to moderate expectations but came back pretty impressed and wanting to go again. Think they are the rising star in the US and have no doubt I will cruise them again and not just in the caribbean. I love that they offer a different type of experience onboard. Tired of the same old cruises so we will certainly look to sail on the again, thinking Med for 2015. I say try them out now as their pricing is low enough. Once everyone learns about them, their rates will certainly go up. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
I just spent a week on this ship in early May and I loved it! This is a very nice ship. From the main lobby, to the room, outside decks, theatre, club, restaurants to teh staff etc. The food was amazing. Nothing was a "good enough ... Read More
I just spent a week on this ship in early May and I loved it! This is a very nice ship. From the main lobby, to the room, outside decks, theatre, club, restaurants to teh staff etc. The food was amazing. Nothing was a "good enough facsimile". The food was just great! Even the buffet had enough options, including the Mediterranean and Ethnic Corners, that were done well. "Caffe Italia" was a nice little cafe that made proper Italian coffee. The wine selection was quite good at the restaurants. I cannot recall the name of the restaurant but on deck 7 (or was it deck 6?) they had a restaurant that made authentic Italian pizza like they do in Italy. The "Galaxy Night Club" on deck 16 was a rockin' place every night. The deejay actually did spin some good tracks and had the crowd in a groove. Mind you some nights like the last night, there weren't as many people there. The staff were very attentive to your needs and very cheerful and knowledgeable. I'm a photographer and had my equipment with me and had nice chats with the photographers on-board. As well I had a chance with a couple of friends to meet the Captain, Pier Paolo Scalla, and he sat with us for a considerable amount of time and chatted with us from everything about the ship to his childhood. From the chat it was obvious to me, the Captain's personality and expectations are evident in his staff. I would recommend this ship and would sail on it again! Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This is my review of our week on the MSC DIVINA, May 10, Western Caribbean. I wont speak about any of the port activities because been in the Caribbean enough times that we in decided to just relax onboard this beautiful vessel.....we are ... Read More
This is my review of our week on the MSC DIVINA, May 10, Western Caribbean. I wont speak about any of the port activities because been in the Caribbean enough times that we in decided to just relax onboard this beautiful vessel.....we are experienced cruisers with almost 30 cruises under our belt.. We are elite on Princess but also have sailed with Royal Caribbean, Carnival and NCL. To begin with,,embarking is quick and easy 10 minutes from start to finish..had embarking number 17 and we were on board by noon. They advise that cabins are not ready till 2 PM but we made our way up to our cabin on deck 9 (Minerva deck) and lo and behold our mid ship balcony cabin was ready..we dropped off our carry on and proceeded to check out the buffet area. Cant say enough about the buffet on this ship.......very large...it continues all the way back where you can find different offerings So be sure to check it all out before making any decisions...the pasta station is awesome..as is all the pizza offerings...the deserts are plentiful, but some look better than they taste. Hamburgers and hot dogs premade but really terrific and good tasting.....all the fixings area available..... Our mid ship balcony was sufficient..however the drawer space is absurd...the drawers are so tiny you cannot fit your clothing in them...look like they are meant for baby clothes..BTW I am not a large person and could not fold any tops small enough to fit into the drawers without wrinkling them...even under clothing was a tough fit...very insufficient and my biggest gripe about this ship..and maybe my only gripe... Balcony size is sufficient for two..but a little small...no problem for us.. The food in the dining room and the buffet and everywhere Round the ship is pretty god..som,e she's better than others....but on the whole, pretty good..no complaints ..although I heard some passengers complain that the food was not hot enough..I found it to my liking every time...coffee is very strong and I needed to water it down to be able to tolerate it... The Internet service is good.pretty fast for a ship connection...1 purchased 100 minutes for $45...worth it for me... Just a note for you men...none of the public restrooms have urinals...a strange sight to most men....just thought would let you guys know... The ship is immaculate and with so much glass and mirrors around public areas, I never saw a fingerprint....pretty impressive.. The entertainment might be the best I have encountered on a ship...I would sail MSC again just for their nightly shows...all talented and trained voices and dancers...shows are terrific..don't miss one...they have plenty of activities to keep you busy..this turned out to be a baseball cruise and 4 former players held games and contests each day...well done and lots of fun if you are a baseball fan...we are.....and we won the baseball trivia challenge...our prize was an autographed MSC cap...... Loved it. No passenger art option me like not so welded , or battle of the sexes, etc. I think there are too many languages spoken on board and that may be why no games are played...some triva during the afternoons... Met some nice people on board....but encountered lots of non English speaking passengers and crew..sometimes it was difficult to communicate your needs to the crew. MSC still experiencing growing pains..especially In the service are, not for lack of trying...I am positive that as they spend more time around Americans and the Caribbean they will become better adapted to our way of cruising....would not hesitate to cruise with them again.. Don't hesitate to give it a try we did and had a great time!   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
I am amazed at some of the poor reviews I've read about the Divina. We thoroughly enjoyed our time aboard. I had planned on writing a lengthy review but as I sit here reading some of the poor reviews I have to rebut some of the ... Read More
I am amazed at some of the poor reviews I've read about the Divina. We thoroughly enjoyed our time aboard. I had planned on writing a lengthy review but as I sit here reading some of the poor reviews I have to rebut some of the ridiculous comments. So, I will summarize: Big deal!!! you couldn't use the ladies room while in the beauty parlor getting your Judge Judy doo? Off with their heads! OMG, no tap water to drink?? REALLY??? You must have thought you were in the Sahara! Confined to your room because the rails and elevators were sooo sticky?? I guess the numerous cleaning staff which were diligently cleaning and polishing 24/7 must have missed the elevator you rode in.... or could it be that one or more of the 4000 people onboard may have had some of that incredible Gelato on their hands... The dining room ceiling was too low??? Really???? Oh, and I especially love the comments about the foreign staff from "poorer countries". Damn those poorer foreign people! Let's talk down to them and be obnoxious by snapping our fingers at them demanding they bring us more bread. If they don't understand us, lets make them feel really stupid because, duh, everyone is supposed to speak and understand English! (I actually witnessed this and was ashamed and disgusted) GET A LIFE!!! You all paid unheard of low prices for a 7 day cruise on what in all reality is an incredibly beautiful ship. I'm sorry you didn't get the 5 star dining experience you expected, you cant get a filet mignon when you only paid for a happy meal! We found the ship to be spotless, the staff friendly and professional, the food and drink great, the shows and entertainment INCREDIBLE... so incredible, the performers received standing ovations at every show we attended. Any cruise or vacation is what you make it, we chose to have a good time and met some amazing people who all shared our impressions of the ship. Do yourselves a favor and book your Divina cruise with confidence. It really doesn't warrant these poor reviews. I HAVE SAILED CUNARD, HOLLAND, CELEBRITY, PRINCESS I WOULD STRONGLY RECOMMEND THE MSC DIVINA AND THE MSC LINE. IN FACT, JUST BOOKED A CRUISE ON THE MAGNIFICA. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Road access to the Port of Miami seems to have deteriorated since our last visit, signage from and after I 95 is very poor. Embarkation at around 1pm was a breeze, very efficient and friendly, 15 minutes from parking lot to walking on to ... Read More
Road access to the Port of Miami seems to have deteriorated since our last visit, signage from and after I 95 is very poor. Embarkation at around 1pm was a breeze, very efficient and friendly, 15 minutes from parking lot to walking on to the beautiful MSC Divina. We were greeted and directed to the buffet though we diverted by way of the Casino bar to pick up our beverage coupon, once again a quick and easy process.. We then ascended to deck 14 and the buffet for lunch. The buffet seemed surprisingly uncrowded, was easy to navigate with it's well marked stations and we had no problem finding a vacant table then or at any lunch time during the week. We pretty much stuck to the salad, fruit and Mediterranaen stations which while not lavish in their selection took care of our needs. We ordered from the limited but quite adequate room sevice menu and ate breakfast on our balcony all week so did not see the buffet in the mornings. At 2pm the cabins were declared 'open' and on inspection of our deck 8 balcony cabin we found a stylish room with a small balcony and an efficient bathroom with, to our delight, a bath tub. The balcony overlooks the ships boats but without obstructing the view. Our bags turned up fairly quickly with the courtesy of a knock on the door from our room steward, who unobtrusively took care of our cabin with great efficiency and always greeted us when we passed by. Lifeboat/safety drill differed little from any previous cruise, a liitle crowded, a bit warm and slightly protracted by explanations in 5 languages, though English was the only language used for regular announcements for the remainder of the week. We were booked in for early seating dinner at 6pm, on a 6 top we had two regular Canadian table mates and two who were occasional visitors. Service was good, our waiters were excellent with a good sense of humor, dinner selection was varied and the food generally good. Dinner lasted 1 1/2 to 2 hrs in part because we usually tried each of the 4 courses. The pasta dishes were interesting and always al dente, entrees were generally good and appetizers and desserts excellent. There was no pressure to rush dinner because the entertainment schedule was well thought out so no need to rush off to an event. We did not feel the need to try the speciality restaurants. Divina has multiple bars and lounges with several diverse styles of music playing at any time. Bar service was very good and you quickly recognized that the way to get drinks was to flag down one of many helpful servers to take your order, which left the bartenders free to mix drinks. This in concert with the fact that most people had drink coupons or packages made the process quck and painless. The production shows in the theater were generally excellent, the performers professional and enthusiastic with acrobats, tumblers and contortionis plus a cast of great dancers performing in every show. The shows were the best we have seen on any ship. Because of the diversity of venues and perhaps the mix of passenger nationalities people seemed to be spread all over the ship at any particular time and it never seemed crowded. The ship's multinational entertainment team who hosted the activities were brilliant, entertaining and unique in their approach, the cruise director was great, very low key. On sea days the pool areas were crowded but it was always possible to find a lounger, though shade was in short supply. There seemed to be less chair hogging than on many ships, once again perhaps because of the international flavor of the passenger list and a younger average age. Older North Americans seemed to be the only exceptions. Ports were pretty standard, Falmouth Jamaica was interesting, with an obvious presence of police and security personnel around the town the local vendors and taxi drives were polite, unaggressive and friendly. We savoured the peace of a quiet ship in Grand Cayman so cannot roport on the tendering, in Cozumel the ship docked at the 'old dock' close to town so walking in to the town center was a breeze. We arrived off the private island of Great Stirrup Cay with a cold front bearing down from the north so the captain announced a diversion to Nassau for the day, a pleasant surprise since most cruise lines seem to revert to a sea day when it is too rough for tendering into a port. We chose self assist disembarkation, very smooth process we were walking off the ship at 7am and driving out of the port 30 minutes later. All in all an excellent cruise, good service and entertainment and food every bit as good as our recent cruise on Ruby Princess and better than on RCCL last year. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
My husband and I recently returned from our second sailing aboard MSC Divina. Our first was on March 22nd in a Balcony cabin and the second in a YC1 in the Yacht Club. We enjoyed both but the Yacht Club was the absolute tops!!. The Yacht ... Read More
My husband and I recently returned from our second sailing aboard MSC Divina. Our first was on March 22nd in a Balcony cabin and the second in a YC1 in the Yacht Club. We enjoyed both but the Yacht Club was the absolute tops!!. The Yacht Club experience is probably the best kept secret in the industry. It started as we dropped our luggage at the pier, were escorted on to the ship by a butler and continued to be pampered until we disembarked the ship. Cabin price will of course vary with the suite category you choose but cannot be beat. The value is phenomenal as the experience is all inclusive with your wine, beer and cocktails when in the Yacht Club lounges or restaurants. The first time I took out my cabin card, other than to open the door, was on a visit to the spa. The ship is beautiful and very well maintained. We experienced better than excellent service and found the crew to be helpful and professional. The shows are outstanding in a beautiful, comfortable theatre – the Skywalker Show, a Michael Jackson Tribute, is one of the best. Even the photography service is professional and well executed. Pasta is fresh made on board and the food in the Muse, the private dining room for Yacht Club guests, was outstanding and the service, some of the best we have experienced on any ship. For Yacht Club guests, you could have a continental breakfast in the lounge, a nice casual breakfast in your exclusive pool area or a full breakfast in the Muse every day. You have butler and concierge service even in the smallest YC accommodation. We had a wonderful butler and his service was outstanding plus. One negative which was more the Port Of Miami as opposed to MSC was the long line to disembark. The Yacht Club is truly a ship within a ship. We would have no hesitation in recommending the Divina in any accommodation. We have already booked to return. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
After reading so many reviews both positive and negative, I decided I should share my experiences on my recent MSC Divina cruise. First about me; I am a 54 year old now single man from Ohio. After a somewhat recent ending of a six year ... Read More
After reading so many reviews both positive and negative, I decided I should share my experiences on my recent MSC Divina cruise. First about me; I am a 54 year old now single man from Ohio. After a somewhat recent ending of a six year relationship and enduring a tough winter, a friend of mine told me about the Divina and when he was going. I chose to sign up and used the idea of a cruise to help me get through the winter. On this cruise I was traveling on my own, but knew that my friend would be aboard the Divina along with several fun people from the Cruise Critic Message Board. Arrival at the Port of Miami: I arrived to the port at approximately 11:00 am. I made it through multiple security checks and walked into a large hall loud hall. (Wearing hearing aids, the noise was too much for me.) I walked into a line with little waiting approached the agent and started to check in. When the gate agent asked for my medical form in which I did not know what she was talking about. She was able to supply one and it was completed along with the rest of the check in process. When I asked about boarding groups, she told me that I should have a number handed to me at the beginning of the line. At that point it became apparent to me that I had not been approached as I should have been by a staff member handing out both the medical form and boarding group numbers. I found the right staff person, got my boarding card and everything was remedied easily. I guess this was just a hazard of travelling solo. Boarding the ship was a snap. Once on board, the ship was gorgeous. I immediately went to the Buffet and had a nice quiet lunch. As other reviewers have pointed out, the further back you go in the buffet, the quieter is it. I chose to sit near the aft, where there were large picture windows allowing for a view of the Miami Skyline. The food was quite tasty and there was a wonderful selection of both healthy and decadent selections at the buffet throughout the week. There were lots of public spaces in which to congregate, in fact most of Deck 7 is club after club after club. Probably my favorite place was the Garden Bar. The Garden Bar is outside and tucked away on the aft near the infinity pool. It was much quieter and much more relaxed than the other two pools. Our CC Roll Call had an informal gathering at the Garden Bar and it very quickly became our meet up area throughout the cruise. I must say that our CC Meet and Mingle was quite well attended there were dozens of members there. I guess there was so much traffic on our roll call, it caught MSC’s attention. In fact, Ken Muscat MSC’s Senior VP of Sales and Marketing attended our Meet and Mingle. He was a very nice man and took copious notes from our suggestions as well as our complements. I was travelling alone and chose to book and inside cabin on Deck 8. The cabin was small, but for one person it was just the right size. Storage was ample for one person, but with two formal nights, I could see how the storage space could be just a bit tight. The storage area had three cabinet doors, two which opened to a closet and one which opened to a shelf, the safe and several drawers. There were also two night stands, each with a drawer. The cabin had a desk with an upholstered cube to sit on with two shallow drawers, one which held a blow dryer. Additionally, there was a mini bar and a flat screen TV perched upon the mini bar. The bathroom was ample and had wonderful glass like doors which folded in allowing for the bath to feel even more spacious. The shower, once the doors were pulled out, made for a roomy shower. One interesting thing happened to my cabin while on the cruise; my cabin steward moved my beds apart to turn them into twin beds. The “renovation” of my cabin came as a surprise when I walked back in that evening. Seeing as the central space of the cabin made things seem roomier, I decided to try it for a day or two. After the second night, I saw my steward and ask him why he changed my beds. He told me that my neighbors had insisted that was their cabin and asked for the change. I did find the excuse weak, as told him I was not comfortable in a twin bed and to please change it back. When I returned to the cabin, the “renovation” had been un-done and all was back to normal. Speaking of cabin stewards, mine was quite pleasant and found the right mix between being friendly and not intrusive. The cabin was always clean and towels, regardless if I wanted them replaced or not, were always fresh. Dining aboard the ship was always a pleasure. Food was quite tasty and my dining mates at my table were wonderful people. At my table was my friend, who is Canadian, whose parents were from the UK, and five Brits. Even though we speak the same language, the Canadian often translated for me. One example of my Canadian friend translating for me, one of the ladies at the table was a retired Matron. I innocently asked her if she enjoyed her work in prisons, which elicited huge roars of laughter. My Canadian friend explained that in Britain, a Matron is the equivalent of a Head Nurse. I think I may have actually blushed at that point! One difference with dining on MSC, dinner is an experience. Dinner often lasted at least an hour and a half. Dining with delightful people often made that hour and a half go so quickly. Wait staff and bartenders were always pleasant and attentive. During the entire week, I ran into only one server who was a bit too surly for my tastes. Other servers more than made up for the one person’s surliness and the issue was quickly forgotten. A couple of other thing I must mention. Prior to leaving on the cruise, I had ordered the Allegrissimo Premium Drink Package. I must say I am glad that I did. Not only did the package include most liquors, it also included top shelf liquors, soda pop, the items in my mini bar, gelato from the gelato bar, pastries from the pastry counter and coffee drinks. While I am not a big drinker, the unlimited selection allowed me to try things I would never ever try. For example, Johnnie Walker Blue Scotch was one of the drinks included. Not being a Scotch drinker, I would never have tried it at $22.00 a shot. Since I was on the package I tried it and decided it was something I liked. A double or two of Johnnie Walker Blue in the evening or a Hennessey XO at $17.00 a shot would help me meet my cost quota to break even each day. I must say that after totaling my receipts from the week between all of my indulgences, the total more than exceeded the original $399.00 price for the package. If this package is available to you, I would heartily suggest ordering this before your board the ship. The package once you are on the ship increases in cost and is not available after the first day of the cruise. I must also mention the entertainment. Not only is the theater beautifully designed, with great sight lines and wonderful acoustics, the shows were also very good. Each show had a good combination of music dancing and acrobatics throughout the week. Even though I am not a huge fan of opera, there were two shows opera shows done throughout the week. Please do NOT miss these shows. They are incredible. The tenor was unbelievable good. Additionally, the ships photographers are extremely talented and took the time to take wonderful photos of passengers wanting their photos taken. After the first dinner, the photographers were never intrusive and often were stationed in different locations throughout the ship. The photographers would actually pose people to get a good photo of the person. My Canadian friend took several photos which were incredible. This was my thirteenth cruise and second with MSC. After this cruise, I will most certainly be taking more cruises with MSC as this was probably one of the best cruises I had taken in years. Would I recommend MSC? I most certainly and absolutely would!   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
The cruise was awesome overall, and of course there there always will be something that people will complain about, especially as spoiled as we are in the US with high expectations of outstanding customer service. Yes, European's are ... Read More
The cruise was awesome overall, and of course there there always will be something that people will complain about, especially as spoiled as we are in the US with high expectations of outstanding customer service. Yes, European's are a little different and be prepared to get no more or no less for what you pay for! If you want a nice balcony cabin, pay for one at the time of booking as there will be no "special accommodations or free upgrades" on board. The ship was ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS AND BEAUTIFUL and VERY VERY CLEAN!!! Employees really take great care of the ship non-stop day or night. Everyone was friendly for the most part except for a few few that probably hate their job and waiting for their contract to be over. Keep in mind all the staff is hired from over seas and only make between $900-$1200 a month for working 7 days a week 10-12 hr shifts sometimes - it's not easy!!! The Entertainment and Food was excellent with a great variety and trust me you will never be hungry or bored on this MSC Divina! I personally read a lot of reviews before booking this cruise for our honeymoon and as you noticed 2.7 out 5 is not a good sign on Expedia for example, but we came back way more than satisfied!!! Overall it's a great cruise especially for the low price compare to other cruise lines. The reason for low pricing has a purpose of letting people to get to know MSC and gain american business as their cruise line is fairly fresh on the US market. But I'm sure low pricing will not last forever, so if you thinking to book a cruise with them, don't take too long, we liked it way better than Carnival and Royal Caribbean! The drink prices are very reasonable, we purchased a coupon book on the first day for 15 drinks that you can use at any bar on the ship including the main dining room, it was $82 witch was a good deal. Ports of call were very nice except for Falmouth, Jamaica - not the best place! Please book an excursion there and don't try to explore on your own, it is a not a very safe place, we took a shuttle to Montego Bay and there is really not much to do, the only thing they have is a MargaritaVille for tourist and nothing else. Ochos RIos is a much better port with much more sight seeing... Cayman Islands and Cozumel were very nice, we did a swimming with the Sting Rays - it was unforgettable experience and much better than swimming with the dolphins and 3 times cheaper too! Good luck sailing and book your cruise soon, don't be afraid of the bad review that people leave it's really not that bad and way worth your money! Desserts are to die for by the way, freshly made daily!!! Julia from San Diego, Ca Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
The Divina receives the 'American Bear' award for 'Best Entertainment Value at Sea'! Service, 'extremely good'! (we tipped extra) Food, 'extremely good'! (we definitely gained weight) Ship, ... Read More
The Divina receives the 'American Bear' award for 'Best Entertainment Value at Sea'! Service, 'extremely good'! (we tipped extra) Food, 'extremely good'! (we definitely gained weight) Ship, 'beautiful'! (internet pictures don't do justice) Overall Entertainment value for your money, 'outstanding'! (balcony prices for less then other cruise lines ocean views!) If you want bad service, unfriendly ship employees, bad buffet food, a poor selection of buffet food, bad restaurant food, poor restaurant service, a bad embarkation, a bad dis-embarkation, bad shows, bad shipboard entertainment, raw bacon, bad hamburgers, weak drinks, poor room service, employees who never smile at you, an ugly ship, over priced bad excursions, and if you want to overpay for your cruise,,,,,, THEN YOU BETTER LOOK 'ELSEWHERE'! CAUSE THE 'DIVINA IS DIVINE'! When any little problem arose during our 14 days, (and most of them were of our doing) we were awestruck that the answer from the Divina staff was always, 'no problem', (the problem went away), and that answer always came with a smile! Embarkation, Dis-embarkation, flawless! Everyone you pass in the hallways says hello, the staff removing your plates at the buffet always smiled, if you ever smiled and reached out your hand it was immediately met with a smile and handshake! Our restaurant personnel not only remembered our names, but went out of their way to greet us if they saw us outside the restaurant! We were offered seconds in the restaurant of the more popular items without asking! Our balcony cabin was the equal or better of any other cruise line we've taken! Sitting quietly on the Divina, talking, relaxing, reading, sunning, while not being hasseled to buy a drink, or hearing blaring sales announcements over loud speakers every 3 minutes like on other cruise lines=happiness! Whether you buy the all you can drink packages(and they mean unlimited), the vouchers, or just buy your drinks with your cruise card, the Divina's drink prices are the fairest we've experienced on a cruise line! And we never had a problem getting a drink when we wanted one! No machine monitoring, the pours were excellent! Appreciation is a 2 way street on the Divina! A perfect example of this was the final show at the end of our 14 day cruise,,,,'The Michael Jackson Show' that received a loooong standing ovation, followed a few moments later by a personal thank you by the Divina Captain, and many of his officers to the audience for having sailed on the Divina! Then this was followed by the Michael Jackson Entertainer coming off the stage into the audience to greet the cheering crowds, and avail himself to countless photos with the audience, exactly as the Elton John entertainer when he was finished did earlier in the week! That's the kind of exceptional service/appreciation you get on the Divina, from everyone including the Captain! And this incredible entertainment value is given to you on an incredibly beautiful ship! Great job Divina, and a big thumbs up to your crew! We'll be back! No, we do not work for MSC, or any cruise line, we are not travel agents looking to sell you anything, just passing along a great entertainment value! Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
We travel and cruise a lot. Our very recent cruise on the MSC Divina was wonderful. As others have noted, the ship is beautiful. There are lots of things for children and teens but mainly I feel the ship is geared toward adults. Our cabin ... Read More
We travel and cruise a lot. Our very recent cruise on the MSC Divina was wonderful. As others have noted, the ship is beautiful. There are lots of things for children and teens but mainly I feel the ship is geared toward adults. Our cabin was very nice, with balcony. The room steward could not have been any more efficient or helpful, very nice man. The highlight of every day was the entertainment, awesome. The best I have ever seen on a ship or anywhere really. The performances were as good as Broadway, and operatic performances matched the Met! really quite unbelievable voices. I see some have criticized the food and the food service. This was unfair, our service was very good. We ate most meals in the dining rooms. All was quite good. Keep in mind that they serve over 3,000 people at each meal, no it is not like going to a local restaurant, in my mind it is better. As for the criticism about the private island food, considering that they had to bring all the food and servers from the ship, I felt it was quite good. Like anything else, if you wait to the last minute to eat, you will get what is left. There was plenty of drink available at the food pavilion which could have been taken on the tender if needed. Being flexible makes international travel much more enjoyable! I will book again with MSC. Our friends who were with us are also planning to rebook! Thanks MSC for a great vacation Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This short cruise was a very special occasion. It was to celebrate with my grandson for his first time cruising, and for his 7th birthday. We had a ball! We arrived early so that we could take advantage of an early lunch and then swimming. ... Read More
This short cruise was a very special occasion. It was to celebrate with my grandson for his first time cruising, and for his 7th birthday. We had a ball! We arrived early so that we could take advantage of an early lunch and then swimming. AC repeatedly went down the water slide as I stood nearby to take in the Downtown Miami skyline. Afterwards, we relaxed in a very modern decorated oceanview room with a balcony, complete with interactive tv and 24 hour room service. Dinner in the dining room was great; we enjoyed the European cuisine with its attractive presentation. Breakfast and lunch were buffet and offered a tremendous variation of all types of cuisines, Asian, American, Ethinic, etc. Our servers were very polite and accommodating. After sightseeing in the Bahamas through a purchased excursion, AC decided to participate in the MSC camp for kids and he loved it! I couldn't tear him away -- he had dinner with the other campers, played video games, dressed up in smurf costumes, and even won a prize for participating in a camp competition. The Divina has a 3D theatre and bowling on board, but we took part in so many other activites on the ship that we never got a chance to bowl or see the 3D presentation. However, the entertainment was good, and the kids really enjoyed the Michael Jackson show. Disembarkation was simple, fast and effortless! The only suggestion that I have to improve this great weekend would be for MSC to hire more waiterson the Divina. It took many of us over 30 minutes to order drinks from the bar, and that was after we realized that there were no waiters soliciting us drinks from our chairs by the pool. All in all, we both had a great weekend; AC did not want to leave the ship and I definitely would cruise MSC again...real soon! Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Having sailed with the usual suspects (Celebrity, NCL, RCCL, Princess, Cunard) this was our first time with MSC. Have to say was attracted by the very reasonable cost but also excited to try a new line. Read the reviews but the positives ... Read More
Having sailed with the usual suspects (Celebrity, NCL, RCCL, Princess, Cunard) this was our first time with MSC. Have to say was attracted by the very reasonable cost but also excited to try a new line. Read the reviews but the positives appeared to outweigh the negatives, so off we set. Embarkation was easy, fast and smooth, and we found our way to the cabin with no problem. Cabin good and spacious, plenty of storage for 2 women travelling together (we left our husbands at home!) BUT we found we were in an obstructed view cabin, which we had not been told about and did not want. Most of the balcony cabins had the usual glass panel but some towards the front have obstructed views, so if you're booking a balcony make sure it's not obstructed - unless you don't mind. In this one, if you sat on the chairs all you could see on our balcony was the steel side of the ship. Not good, the only reason I book a balcony is to sit with a drink in hand and gaze at the ocean. Our Travel Agent had not been told it was obstructed view and we definitely would not have booked it if we had known. So black mark to MSC. Am still trying to get some redress from them. However, we weren't going to let it ruin our cruise so we just headed off to the bar, of which there are many. As previous reviewers have said, drinks prices very reasonable compared with other cruise lines. We had the coupon books which are the best idea EVER, $72 for 15 drinks. If you're not a big drinker the Allegrissimo package isn't good value so this worked really well for us. In fact I bought 2 books and didn't even manage to finish the second, despite having as many drinks of all kinds - wine, cocktails, soft drinks etc as I wanted. Décor-wise the ship is beautiful, little bit 'shiny' for my personal taste but that's what it is, personal taste. Very clean, saw more people cleaning than on any other ship. Cabin and bathroom kept clean by our cabin attendant, who while polite and reasonably efficient didn't seem too happy in his chosen career. We asked him one morning how he was and his reply was 'I'm fine at the moment.......pause....but we have to wait and see what the afternoon and the evening bring'! Not exactly one of life's Pollyannas! Food-wise, I have to say we were disappointed with the variety at the buffet. Celebrity definitely win hands down here, the buffet set-up itself was confusing and not well laid out, and the choices, while adequate, were not as good as they could have been. Very greasy bacon, no Canadian/English bacon, no smoked salmon/herring etc.at breakfast, so that was a disappointment. Lunch OK, lots of pizza - which was good - and pasta but again, nothing really to make you want to have seconds. Dinner in the MDR was mostly good and if you wanted other choices/more of a dish/didn't like something, our server happily complied. Probably one of the nicest and friendliest servers I've every encountered, he was such a joy all of us at the table (4 couples) jointly tipped him extra. Our table-mates were great but of course that's the luck of the draw. Entertainment was excellent, theater comfortable and great acoustics. Fabulous little café in the Piazza Del Doge I think it was, with great ice-cream drinks, coffees and wonderful selection of pastries. The pool areas were beautiful, nicer than other ships I've been on and loved the pool aft by the Garden Bar, not the main pool but a great area to be in with THE best choice of music - not live, but a really great selection. And no loud PA announcements :) Spa was wonderful, staffed by Balinese therapists and masseuses, so you get the experience of being in Bali without the cost of getting there! Had some wonderful treatments, their packages are pretty well priced. Disembarkation easy, we went to our assigned meeting point in the theater (they do say you have to vacate your cabin by 7.00 but we got all our hand luggage ready to go, went up for breakfast and came back down) -our disembark time was 9.30, so we didn't have to rush and it wasn't a problem leaving our stuff there till we got back from breakfast. Took a little while to be called, but we were comfortable sitting in the theater and were off and through Customs etc by about 10.30 so not too bad. Biggest complaint I had was using the website prior to the cruise - although we did book through a TA I did go on the site several times and found it very difficult and non-responsive. Apparently they have hired some big techie and will be re-doing the entire site, so that's good news. Also their Customer Service leaves a lot to be desired, they don't seem to know everything they should and take forever to answer the phone. F grade here MSC! Overall would I sail again with MSC? Yes, I would. But would like to see better food variety. And I have to say my first love is still Celebrity............ Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This May four of us enjoyed a seven day western Caribbean cruise on the MSC Divina. We booked balcony cabins and were very pleased with the rooms, the service and the cleanliness. The shows were excellent, the ship captain was very ... Read More
This May four of us enjoyed a seven day western Caribbean cruise on the MSC Divina. We booked balcony cabins and were very pleased with the rooms, the service and the cleanliness. The shows were excellent, the ship captain was very accessible and very communicative throughout the cruise. Andre was a great master of ceremonies for the trip and hosted all of the shows and kept people well informed. One of the great surprises on this ship was the very reasonably priced drinks, wines and cocktails. The "white night" during the week where everyone is asked to wear white was fantastic providing a very high energy night of latin salsa dancing, conga lines and guest appearances by the ships entertainers who are all great singers and dancers. The ship is gorgeous and very clean, plenty of rest rooms, easy to get around. You really get a great value for your money on this ship. The restaurants were of highest quality and the dinner service was always top notch. Food is good not great, but to be expected when a kitchen is serving thousands of dinners per night. Excursions were great as well Highlights: 1) Very good shows. Same people every night but a different them. Short and excellent shows every night 2) Food, very good not great but restaurants were available to you as well 3) Beautiful ship, great captain, crew and Andre as MC. Smooth ride, you'll sleep like a baby 4) Gym, facilities, shops, night clubs all top notch 5) A GREAT value for the money There are a few areas for improvement: 1) This is more of a European cruise experience, English is not the first language of most crew members so communication is sometimes a challenge. The few minor issues we had were worked at the front desk and for the most part were not successful. It was a bit of an attitude issue by the customer service people where "customer is always wrong" and that was not appreciated. 2) I had a problem in the casino where after winning a $900 bet, was told the maximum payout is only $600. I spoke to the pit boss who explained the situation, and I was glad to win $600 and did not want to spend a lot of time getting negative about what happened. 3) The flow of people through the buffet needs improvement, people are running into each other like angry ants on an ant hill. Buffet food choices were fine and varied at both breakfast and lunch. Plenty of pizza at night and ice cream in the afternoon. 4) In Nassau we were parked next to Norwegian Getaway and I saw the captains bridge watching with binoculars as the Norwegian crew enthusiastically welcomed their passengers back on the ship with music, red carpet treatment and jello shots. MSC could stand to learn a few lessons about providing better customer service to meet the high expectations of North American passengers Overall an EXCELLENT experience and highly recommended. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
I usually pass on reading long reviews. Now I find myself writing one. Our latest adventure took us out of Miami on MSC’s Divina for a week in the Western Caribbean. If you’re considering MSC, this information may be helpful. ... Read More
I usually pass on reading long reviews. Now I find myself writing one. Our latest adventure took us out of Miami on MSC’s Divina for a week in the Western Caribbean. If you’re considering MSC, this information may be helpful. Embarkation in Miami was a breeze with twice the staff for check in, and all friendly & helpful. We found our own way to our balcony cabin, mid-ship on deck 13. Having paid way less than half the fare of our usual Holland or Celebrity cabin, we were pleasantly surprised to find not only a very large bed but a good deal more room to move around. The shower was refreshing, and didn’t leak all over the place. Again, a pleasant surprise. We had read reviews about ‘cold’ and ‘unhelpful’ personnel on MSC, particularly the Divina. Our steward was really thorough, kept us pampered and couldn’t have been nicer. No chocolates or swans found their way to our pillows, so we didn’t find any melted surprises the next morning. The interactive television had no updated information about our account, so we traipsed down to Guest Services to see what had happened to our pre-booked packages. The young lady seemed more than happy to tell us nothing had come through and that their internet system needed some updating. She later earned her stripes with another issue, but this seemed a bit of a sour note on which to start. The bartender across the lobby seemed to appreciate our frustration, and bought us a drink. Nice recovery. Dining is always a crap shoot for two guys. You either get paired with a couple of old maids or squeezed into the largest table in the room for group therapy. The latter the case here, we enjoyed the food & the conversation, but couldn’t get past the unfriendly wait staff. We chalked it up to being perpetually in the weeds due to the sheer volume of guests. We took the rest of our meals at the buffet where everyone was at ease and pleasant. Breakfast there was really good, and the rest pretty standard except for the pizza: it was great. We did not try any of the other dining venues, but have to wonder why one of them is devoted to pizza at a hefty surcharge when the free pizza at the buffet is so good. There was plenty of seating, and the tables cleaned efficiently between guests. Anyway, my hat’s off to their attentive and professional staff up there, and the consistently good, strong coffee. The ship itself is beautiful and large, nicely appointed and well-maintained. The staff managed 3000 guests safely and efficiently, including the tenders. There are endless pools and lounge areas and no fighting for chairs. Each of the dinner shows offered a blend of talent including singing, dancing and acrobatics. The theater was massive, beautiful and had some of the best acoustics at sea. Each evening, a troupe of about twenty small children marched with their ‘kiddie club’ guardians into the front rows. With faces painted and sporting show-themed accessories, they were pretty entertaining, too. Some notes in brief: --Shore excursions only worked interactively two days out, and then sold out. Use the desk and book early. --There were two formal nights on this 7-day cruise, but only about half dressed for dinner any night. --Plan to be out of your cabin at 7:00 a.m. on the final day of your cruise, --Do not expect to get an elevator the morning of disembarkation. --Label and put everything outside your cabin door for the porter unless you want to carry it down flights & flights of very, very crowed stairs full of angry people the following morning. All in all, we enjoyed our cruise experience: Comfortable and clean accommodations, nice ports and staff that are generally more reserved than those found on other ships serving South Florida’s ports. The passengers were a refreshing and diverse group of young people. If you relish a dining experience each night, get to the Maitre’D for a small table and/or try out some of the other dining venues, like the Eatily Steakhouse. Alternatively, enjoy the people-watching at the Calumet Buffet, because we’re happy to say there’s no Lido Deck here. By the way, disembarkation was the smoothest of any cruise ever, with bags on carousels and swiftly moving Immigration & Customs lines, too. We were off and out in less than ten minutes.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
For us and our experience, The MSC Divina was Ah-mazing! Albeit less than half the cost of any other Cruise Line sailing at the same time, and the passenger mix was 39% American and the rest European/South American. A big change for Jerome ... Read More
For us and our experience, The MSC Divina was Ah-mazing! Albeit less than half the cost of any other Cruise Line sailing at the same time, and the passenger mix was 39% American and the rest European/South American. A big change for Jerome and myself. Virtually No Children were aboard, as we sailed in a Week (May 3rd-10th, 2014) when all kids are in school, having just missed the dreaded "Spring Break" Season. I am always mindful of our sail dates, as now with their new promotion MSC Divina just started, all kids sail free, 17 and under. Which was just extended from 11 and under. The Food was awesome! We waltzed thru the buffets each morning, found nine individual stations of crispy bacon (and I made a point of sincerely looking over and over, every day for any sign of raw bacon, at each station, so I could complain. But I saw none, ever. Sadly the bacon is all crispy, crispy, crispy and is placed upon bread to soak up the grease and the pans are changed rapidly to maintain crispness). The eggs were always fresh, fresh fruit was abundant and there were so many International Breakfast choices, plus a hand carved meat station each and every morning, afternoon and evening. Yes, at the initial buffet entrance, it was crowded as folks did not wander further enough aft and insisted on congregating up front. But just by walking to the rear of the ship, passing the ginormous buffets, on each side of the ship, was the best option for awesome seating and no lines for food. The buffets were abundant and the food repeated in several stations on our way aft, except for the Mediterranean Stations and the Deli Station. The view from the aft was amazing! And those tables were always available. The best tables in the house and no takers. There were 12 Coffee and Beverage Stations and Two Specialty Coffee and Liquor Bars in the Buffet Area. The free coffee was excellent. There was a selection of free specialty waters rotated in different stations (Strawberry, Kiwi, Mango-Orange, Mango-Pineapple, or Pineapple), Lemonade and Iced Tea with plenty of Lemons available each and every day. It was fun finding the different waters. I was impressed and cannot complain about one thing in the buffet. The MDR food was very good. I had a great cut of Prime Rib one night that was fantastic, I had the lobster tail another night and it was just okay. Overall the food was actually, comparable to most I have eaten on any ship. I ordered the NY Strip off the alternate menu and it was superb. The pasta dishes were always al' dente and the variety of sauces presented each day were veritably Italian in flavor. But, we never had a bad meal, we never had a bad experience and always felt that we were catered too. Minor, inconsequential challenges, that happen every day whether on a ship or not, that would send some screaming "Travesty!", do not ever affect my overall opinion of our vacation. I call them Life Experiences. My favorite "Travesty" by the way, was watching a lady get irritated when she asked for "Lemon" for her "Wat-a" to one waiter and then, impatient as she was, less than thirty seconds later asked another waiter for the same thing, then had the where-with-all to ask a third waiter passing by. Then, almost immediately, the first waiter returned and brought her a mountain of lemons in a dish, and then the second waiter did the same, and about a minute after that the third followed suit. She thought that it was a "Travesty" that it took too long. Palease! It has been years, many years since I was on a ship and the main dining room offered The Baked Alaska Parade. It was fun, and reminiscent of ocean liners Dining Parades of days gone by, and the dessert itself was just as spectacular as I remember as a child. I keep sitting at my dining room table here at home waiting for the parade to start, but alas, it's not happening. The Daily Buffet featured a 4:30 PM Deli "Make Your Own Sandwich" Bar and it was an incredible site to see each afternoon. It was posted in the daily's but I guess folks weren't hungry, not very many showed up, even on sea days. We had late dining seating (8:45PM), so I managed to build myself a Dagwood Sandwich almost every day.....and all the meats and cheeses are hand sliced right in front of you on the gigantic, the size of a Fiat, slicing machines. The breads available each and every day, are all exceptional fresh baked creations. The Eataly Steakhouse Specialty Restaurant was exactly like the one in New York City. Except in New York City, there is a 6 month wait for a reservation or a three hour wait for a table if you did not have one. The Steakhouse is not marketed enough on board the MSC Divina, or more folks would try it and equally enjoy it. We pre-ordered the $24 per person package, but my recommendation would be to fore go that and to just stick with the Ala Carte menu available, and by the way, the prices are on the menu. The MSC Divina, with Eataly in particular, has not fully grasped the Specialty Dining concept as other Cruise Lines have. Most folks will not pay ala carte pricing for dinner, when the Main Dining Room is included with the cruise fare. The pricing should just be an up charge and that's all, similar to what is offered on other cruise lines in their respective steakhouses. The Eataly pre-order $24 Up charge includes an appetizer and either pasta or entree, but there is no Steak Entree available (except for a medallion offering which is sliced steak and not a STEAK). Steak is separate and the prices range from an additional $24 NY Sirloin to $60 for a T-Bone for Two. The Filet Mignon is $30. So I was, needless to say, a bit perplexed and confused with this offering. Though the food was awesome, it was not fully explained. It is also very odd at first, sitting on plexy plastic chairs, but that's The Eataly Restaurant Chain's schtick in New York and Italy. I promise though, that after the first glass of Prosecco and your first bite of your incredible Filet Mignon, you will forget all about the plastic chairs. Our Service was outstanding and truly exceptional. Need I say more about the awesome pizza? Not the buffet pizza, but the hand crafted Italian Pizza. Oh goodness, gracious me! The Pizza is phenomenal. Crispy crust, fresh toppings, fresh from the oven and can be delivered to your room. Just ask. The daily offerings of twenty different fresh baked foccia breads is also an incredible hidden treat. Nothing like an afternoon snack, foccia and olive oils to dip, with a wonderful Cappuccino and Bailey's, that is a yummy yum yum. Room Service menu was really cool. I had Smoked Salmon, a Caprese Tomato Salad and a Prosciutto Antipasto Platter almost every day. It got to the point that when I would call Room Service, the gentleman operator would address me by name and say, "Same thing today?" On the last night of the cruise, we enjoyed the Seven Course Gastronomic Galaxy Experience Specialty Restaurant Dinner. We dined graciously in the Window Walled, Deck 17 Galaxy Restaurant, overlooking the gorgeous ship's pool and a truly romantic sunset. The room reminds me of the old, what were they called....(Crown and Anchor Clubs?) perched high above the sea. That dinner experience, complete with 7 awesome Mediterranean specialty chef prepared dishes, and an even more incredible 7 glasses of specially selected wines paired with each course, rounded out a very special cruise experience that should not be missed and is definitely worth the $50 per person cover price. Our service in Galaxy was top notch, which was also always the case throughout our experience on The MSC Divina. Main Dining Room Service. In the Main Dining Room, It's called "European" Dining. My American take is better known as "Country Club" Dining. We ate in The Villa Rosa Dining Room, which is the smaller of the two Main Dining restaurants, at a table for two. It was like celebrating my birthday in a wonderful restaurant every night. What it is not like, is eating in an American Corporate Restaurant with me having to "Shovel Down My Throat all the food at once in 45 minutes time". It's not "get 'em in and get em' out" service. (This is what I have heard my fellow Americans dislike about The MSC Divina. Many say that they are not used to "Dining" and are used to shoveling food, hurry, hurry, hurry, and going thru the motions, gobble, gobble, gobble, rush, rush, rush) To me, it was like being in Italy, or in a European Cafe and lingering for hours enjoying each others company, every single night. Sipping wine, champagne, San Pelegrino. Savoring our food. Savoring each other. After 25 years of being together, we forgot how to hold a conversation at dinner and enjoyed each others company once again. We got to do this for seven amazing nights. It was not slow service. It was Romantic, Country Club, International, Italian Service. Our Service Team excelled at taking care of us, taking care not to rush us, and for that matter everyone around us felt the same, as we could tell by their international sign language of their smiles and laughter, as they were all Europeans. We were the only Americans in our cluster. And Yes, there were a few languages challenges, but I turn those into learning opportunities instead of complaints. Like when Jerome ordered at lunch, everyday, "Anisette" with his espresso. The servers, no matter which one, would bring him "Hennessy" No matter how many times you repeated Anisette, Hennessy would be brought. Instead of getting horribly upset and it becoming a "Travesty!", we chose to figure out what the challenge was. It was not until I looked in the menu and Anisette was listed as Sambuca. The servers knew Sambuca. They did not know Anisette. Anisette sounded like Hennessy. I gathered them all around and we had "English Booze Class" It was so funny. "Anisette?" "Sambuca". I would show them. "Hennessy?" "Not Anisette". It was fun. But really, okay, whose mistake is that? Mine or the server? When I have a language barrier, no matter with whom, I turn it into a learning experience for both of us. And that goes for whether it occurs on my shores, in the USA, or not. I forgot, I am not in the USA anymore. I am on a European Ship not an American ship like that I am used to. I chose the Divina to have a European Experience, not an American experience. MSC is a European Cruise Line, and they should not waiver from their principals of product, and that, in my opinion, is part of my adventure. If Dinner is like celebrating an occasion every night, then we had an equally gorgeous Lunch in the Villa Rosa Restaurant every day. Yes, I said every day, even on Embarkation Day and as well as in all Ports of Call, was The Villa Rosa open for Lunch. I have not had lunch daily in The MDR in years. Try it, it's wonderfully fun, especially with afternoon cocktails. The Entertainment? Spectacular! No, make that Mesmerizing! Exactly like enjoying Cirque du Soliel every night. Yes, what we had read is all true. Plus there are 14 bars that have nightly entertainment too. All at the same time. A walk through the ship brings you to different venues and a variety of nightly Live Bands, Live Groups, Live Comedy, Live Shows, Live Soloists, Live Opera, Live Violin Concertos, Live Italian Duos, Live, Live, Live. It's Entertainment Overdrive. We were not bored with the entertainment offerings. As a matter of fact, we could not fit them all into the cruise, so we have to go back on The Divina just to enjoy the enormous entertainment offerings. The Ship? The most incredible, attention to detail, Italian Design, ultimate classic cruise ship ever, and yes, the Swarovski Crystal Staircases are breath taking! Super clean, superior accommodations, and so many public areas, bars, clubs, lounges and so much open deck space. But for some, sadly no complete around the ship Promenade. There is a Promenade Deck, but the view to the ocean is obstructed by the Life Boats. After five minutes on the open decks high above the sea, I frankly never missed the "Promenade" after that. The Pools. There are over a dozen water features throughout the ship. There are three main pools, but we found many, many water features in the private areas as well, one of which is Top 18. Top 18 is an adult only deck, located above the Galaxy Restaurant with special chaise loungers and a private water feature with towel service, fresh fruit service, bar and beverage service and solitude. Definitely worth the price of $10 per day for peace and solstice if there are a lot of kids on board. Nice breeze consistently flowing thru the darkened glass privacy slats. There is an identical sun deck opposite the Top 18 that surrounds the smoke stack that also has a water feature that is just as private, seek and you shall find. The Infinity Pool is a fun place to hang out, right by the Garden Bar. It's always crowded and we met lots and lots of folks there, and had some of the best times of the cruise. It was like a party there every day. The bar tenders and servers really got to know us and we were one of the "421" club so the bar is always open for us. The "421" Club. We purchased the Premium Allegrissimo Drink Package which includes everything imaginable. It includes all liquor and more. It includes everything in the mini bar in your stateroom, as much as you would like to consume and as fast as the Room Steward can replace it. It includes fresh squeezed Orange Juice. It includes Gelato and Pastries. It includes all specialty coffees. It includes most anything that you desire to drink or eat that comes with a charge. All for $399 per person pre-ordered (not pre-paid) prior to sailing. If you wait to purchase it on board, as it is only available the day of sailing, it is going to be 15% higher plus 8% sales tax, bringing the package to almost $500. Now, one other thing. Jerome drank Johnny Walker Blue on the rocks, at $22.00 a shot, and had three a day. It is included. Every drink of the day, every $6.00 bottle of San Peligrino at dinner is included. Every glass of champagne, every wine on the wine list is included. Every can of soda is included. We added up all our receipts we signed for, and they all were itemized but zero'd out, and they totaled over $1,400.00. Would we have consumed that much if we were paying for it? Probably not. But this is the kicker. We enjoyed the cruise so much more and had the freedom to have everything we wanted without thinking or worrying about the cost. It was included. It was a totally new feeling to just be able to order what ever we wanted and that made us try and experience so many more things than what we would have normally done. Gratuity is included with the package, but we always tip a dollar or two more in cash. One other thing. All persons in the cabin over 21 must purchase the package. We have now coined it...."The All-You-Can-Drink-Kiss-Imo" package. The Crew.....absolutely gorgeous! Mama Mia! I think that every employee is first chosen for "Beauty" and "Looks", then they fill in the blanks with talent. Every single Officer and crew member is either very pretty or very handsome. Everywhere we went, we found that their uniforms are pressed and worn proudly. I was impressed by the constant smiles and "Hello's", and I am one who offers the "Hello" first, by the way. I don't wait to be greeted first, as I don't like to treat crew members as if they are invisible. Our Room Steward Dan S brought us wash cloths the first day (yes, we asked), and kept us stocked up throughout the cruise. Again, it's an American thing. American's like wash cloths. I brought my eBags travel Ice Bucket with me and Dan S kept it filled each day for me, twice a day. Dan S also kept that mini bar filled to capacity for us and always made sure I had enough Absolut Vodka in the fridge for my Martini's on the Balcony. Again, with the Premium Allegrissimo Package, I could have as much as I wanted and Dan S made sure of that! He and is assistant were an exceptional team and truly one of the best duo's in all our experience. We found the crew to be professional, courteous, and happy. I asked our wonderful room steward Dan S how he liked the Divina, and he told me he was on his 4th contract with MSC and loved the Divina the most. One of the main reasons he loves it is because how the crew is treated in their living arrangements. The crew cabins are duals with one bathroom, not quads with one bathroom. It is more like a luxury resort job for the him and he enjoys his job very much, and consequently is very happy. I spoke with dozens of crew members, bar servers, bar tenders, and all told me how happy their lives were because of how accommodating MSC was. All of them told me that they were on their 3rd, 4th or even 10th contract with MSC. All came from other cruise companies and all said that they make more money and are treated better on MSC than any other cruise company. One of the biggest interesting facts on the MSC Divina was finding out how many married couples and co-inhabiting couples were crew members on The Divina and how much MSC went out of their way to accommodate them in quarters together. Happy Crew means Happy Passengers means Happy Company means Happy Profits. Not to say there were not challenges with both passengers and crew members and I did personally witness a few incidents, which are to become part of our "Adventures". Happily, these situations were dealt with swiftly and completely, professionally and proficiently. I looked for an "Unhappy Camper" of a crew member, and could not find one. Where were all these miserable crew members I read about? I for one, often mistook rude or unhappiness for not understanding or being able to communicate properly, thus not unhappy, just frightened of us Americans. On one occasion, there were a couple of crew members not having that good of a day, but the supervisor immediately took care of it and all was well with the world again. I ordered a newspaper to be printed and delivered every day to my cabin. As soon as we boarded, I went to guest relations and ordered my paper from a selection of about 200 world wide papers. We live in South Central Florida, so I chose The Miami Herald. It cost's $3.00 per day, and it's sensational. I highly recommend the paper, and it was delivered everyday before 9AM, consequently, just before my "Coffee Kicked In", so it made the experience that much more enjoyable. They have this really cool technical computer that prints out the papers and binds them. Just order it and see how much fun it is. The paper is a heavier grade so it can be read up on deck with your coffee in the breeze. Funny, when I brought it up on deck, or in the restaurant with me, everyone wanted to know where to get one. Now you know. Yes, MSC would like to increase their market share with Americans, but in my opinion, much of it should be on their terms and not ours. Why be like everyone else? The Divina offers a much different, more relaxed, less stressful cruise vacation than what I usually have experienced with the "Other Guys". I felt as though as soon as I boarded on The MSC Divina, I just left Miami and was immediately whisked into a European country, even before we left the dock. I enjoyed the experience immensely. Yes, The MSC Divina and for that matter all of the MSC Ships are not for everyone, and they should not be. They are carving out a niche in the American market, and they have found Jerome and myself. I like them. I appreciated our vacation and came to understand the remarkable differences. But truly, it reminded me of all the challenging European jaunts I have experienced though out my life, how much fun the adventures were, and we have never been more impressed with the whole package known as The MSC Divina. Our Experience was Celebrity Style, at below Carnival pricing. Value personified with a huge amount of substance. The style is incredibly European Elegant, not American Splash, and a whole lot of relaxation. Truly a great experience for Jerome and myself. We will be returning to The MSC Divina! Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This 2-night cruise on MSC Divina was a great taste of the MSC experience and already has me thinking about my next cruise with MSC. I had a beautiful balcony stateroom where I got to live my dream of having coffee on the balcony and ... Read More
This 2-night cruise on MSC Divina was a great taste of the MSC experience and already has me thinking about my next cruise with MSC. I had a beautiful balcony stateroom where I got to live my dream of having coffee on the balcony and watching the view as we pulled into both Nassau with the clear blue waters and our early morning arrival in PortMiami, too. While onboard, I dined at the buffet, main dining room and the Eataly Steakhouse -- everything was great, especially the pasta at Eataly which is made onboard the ship. During our time in Nassau I decided to stay on the ship since I've already seen most of Nassau on past cruises. I really enjoyed getting to explore the ship and spent the majority of the day spending time by my favorite MSC Divina Pool, the infinity pool at the back of the ship on deck 15. They also had a great bar here with friendly bartenders. While I didn't participate, I also enjoyed watching the aqua cycling class that took place at the infinity pool -- definitely something different than any fitness class I've seen before. I also enjoyed going to the Michael Jackson show in the massive Pantheon theater. The entertainment throughout the ship was top-notch. My cabin was always kept clean and the cabin steward was never intrusive, but made sure the cabin was kept tidy. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly and I was off the ship by 7:30am by using the self-assist option and carrying my own luggage off. Overall, it was an amazing 2-night getaway and I can't wait to sail on MSC Divina again because it is a truly stunning ship with subtle touches of sophistication and the MSC experience seems like a breath of fresh air compared to the other lines I've cruised with. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Let me start by saying we (my wife and I) have been on 25 cruises over the past 15 years. We tried MSC because of the great deal offered. We weren't expecting much, but what a great surprise we got. After a few minor hick-ups, the ... Read More
Let me start by saying we (my wife and I) have been on 25 cruises over the past 15 years. We tried MSC because of the great deal offered. We weren't expecting much, but what a great surprise we got. After a few minor hick-ups, the week was great. The MSC Divina is beautiful. The rooms were nice. We stayed in a balcony cabin which was ok but the way this ship is designed the deck above our room extended above our balcony so no sunshine on the balcony. We ordered the all inclusive package, which included ALL alcohol, soda and all of the ice cream and cappuccino bars. It was a great bargain...... Shows were top notch. By far the best cruise ship entertainment we have experienced over our 15 years of cruising Staff was nice but there was a bit of a language barrier. Embarkation and dis-embarkation was one of the easiest we have ever had Already booked on the Divina for next year Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
After reading previous reviews, I almost didn't want to go. However, everything must have improved a lot over the past few months. This was about our 10th cruise and the easiest to embark and get off of any previous cruises. The ship ... Read More
After reading previous reviews, I almost didn't want to go. However, everything must have improved a lot over the past few months. This was about our 10th cruise and the easiest to embark and get off of any previous cruises. The ship was beautiful and the staff very friendly except for a few cocktail waitresses. Our cabin attendant went out of his way to get any extra wash clothes, etc. we asked for. We thought the bed was great and the cabin very soundproof. Loved the glass shower doors. The entertainment was the best of any cruise we've been on and liked having cruise exercise/dance classes by the pool area. The ONLY negative was the food. It was very mediocre. Carnival was exceptional in comparison. Salad bar very limited and buffets not changed much. Desserts tasted like cardboard. Evening meals were just strange. However, we didn't find the food cold as others reported. The last stop was to the island and due to high seas, the captain determined we could not tender in so he made arrangements for us to go to Nassau which was not part of our itinerary and I'm sure cost them extra. It was nice not to be constantly hassled to have pictures taken or order drinks while on deck as is the case with some other shipping lines. I would positively go on MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Due to the mixed, and not too great reviews, we expected very little. Boy, were we pleasantly surprised! The ship is simply gorgeous. The public areas are well spaced, well lit, and well used. Our balcony cabin was clean, and big enough to ... Read More
Due to the mixed, and not too great reviews, we expected very little. Boy, were we pleasantly surprised! The ship is simply gorgeous. The public areas are well spaced, well lit, and well used. Our balcony cabin was clean, and big enough to be comfortable in - good closet space, and great room darkening curtains. The food was good and plentiful. The help in the dining room were not always English proficient, making for some interesting games of charades. On many days, the search for a lounge chair - not in the sun- was nearly impossible. Though the policy of the ship is to remove towels after 1/2 hour of non-use, that is rarely done. The best features of this ship are (1) the music venues available every evening. Lots of choices, all well done in all the lounges and (2) the high energy shows every night in the theater. All in all, this was a good cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
We took this wonderful cruise, after the last game of the world cup. Been a avid cruiser, I saw the cruise line had a nice route and decided to book it. I book a yact club family suite after reading good reviews about it. I strongly ... Read More
We took this wonderful cruise, after the last game of the world cup. Been a avid cruiser, I saw the cruise line had a nice route and decided to book it. I book a yact club family suite after reading good reviews about it. I strongly recommend the Yact club!!!. From the moment we arrived on board, it was wonderful. We were received by a Butler that took us directly to our beautiful suite. From the pillow menu, to the nice stocked mini bar, to all the personal attention we recieved at all times; I must say that by far, that is been the best cruise we ever taken. we were spolied from day one. Our first contact at the consierge, Tomas, and Guiseppe the Le muse maitre D, from there on it was amazing!!!!. I had read mixed reviews from past Divina cruisers and was careful before booking the cruise. I guess must of the negative complains are due to the fact that people are just to cruising with non European companies. Europeans are more open to change as others. We have no complains whatsoever and we are already looking forward to book our next summer holidays with MSC. Keep up your excellent work, and thanks for a memorable cruise!!! Nieves Family Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
I have never written a review, or had the desire to do so until now. My husband and I have sailed on RCCL, HAL, Celebrity and are Platinum members on Princess. Reading reviews on MSC were so varied, but we couldn't resist the price ... Read More
I have never written a review, or had the desire to do so until now. My husband and I have sailed on RCCL, HAL, Celebrity and are Platinum members on Princess. Reading reviews on MSC were so varied, but we couldn't resist the price and wanted to try them! We are so happy we did! Embarkation was less than 30 minutes around 2:00, no lines, and EASY! We were a bit worried when we still hadn't received our luggage until after 6, but it all came soon! Our balcony cabin was wonderful! We had cabin 10080 with a HUGE balcony! I love the layout and the amount of space in the room and bathroom. We saw our cabin steward once, and that was to ask for our robes which he promptly delivered. He took care of our cabin very well, but I did miss the daily greetings and smiles that are often on other cruise lines. I loved that this wasn't all Americans. It was so pleasant to hear all the different languages. We ate at the buffet and main dining. There are so many choices at the buffet, I can't understand the complaints. I liked almost everything! LOVED the cheesecake! Main dining was fine, and I am gluten free (by choice),and never did talk to them about this. There were enough choices. We had wonderful table mates, and our waiter was very nice. We went to two shows which I thought were great! I did think it sounded a bit funny when they sung American songs with their very strong Italian accent. It just added to the appeal! There were a few things here and there that could have been better, but not enough to complain about. We just roll with the punches. There was a lot more skimpy bathing suits than I've ever witnessed on any of the other cruise lines. 95% should not have even been wearing them! By the end of the week, I had seen way more butts than I ever want to see in one week! That being said, we are actually bringing our 5 children on this same cruise in December. We saw a lot more amenities on MSC for children, than any of the other cruise lines. The price is just too good to pass up! I have tried to price a cruise for all 7 of us on other lines, and no one is coming close! I know the deals that MSC has out there won't last, but we are grabbing one before they are gone! All in all, we loved this cruise! It was so relaxing. We would recommend MSC to everyone, but not to expect an Americanized cruise line. I truly hope MSC stays the way they are. Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
Please note that this review is completely on line with no hidden plans or agendas. I have been cruising since 1972, I worked as a Cruise Director for 12 yrs aboard many ships starting in 1972 including all Home Lines, Sitmar Lines, Royal ... Read More
Please note that this review is completely on line with no hidden plans or agendas. I have been cruising since 1972, I worked as a Cruise Director for 12 yrs aboard many ships starting in 1972 including all Home Lines, Sitmar Lines, Royal Caribbean Intl, Costa Cruises, and many others. I spend close to 17 weeks a year doing what I love to do... cruisin'! Straight up.... here goes... Arrived at Port of Miami around 1:15pm and found the terminal still filled to the max with guests still coming off and newbies waiting to board AND check-in. At this time of day, the process should have been already in full gear but it was clear that the ship was either delayed for clearance by Customs and/or the terminal staff was over-whelmed with check-ins. BOTH! Seems that when the ship is delayed for disembarkation, it will cause havoc checking-in. I was lucky I found staff in the terminal who knew me and quickly got me checked in and cleared and up for boarding. One thing mscCruises still does for immediate impression, they have their staff meet & greet guests as they board. This was done by all cruise lines years ago but most stopped this welcome. I personally liked it. It immediately makes you feel the excitement of 'a' cruise. Being then pointed in the right direction made things easy at this point. Since cabins were not ready, now was the time to venture out and get acquainted with the Divina. Immediately, one could not help but notice her beauty. The Divina is magnificent; filled with wonderful Italian artwork and the public lounges are truly decorated with a European flare. We chose to walk a bit and then venture up to the buffet for lunch. The area of the buffet is actually quite large; from port to stern and aft to forward. Even with all the areas, it seems very congested with people wanting to eat, look and stand. Headed right for their pizza section! Probably the best pizza on any ship!! Real hand-tossed dough with all the trimmings. Did I say GREAT PIZZA!!! The other areas of the buffet were well marked and labeled. Salad fixin's were fresh as was all the fruit selections. The areas for a more hearty meal offered meats, chicken and fish. Vegetables were available also. Meats and chicken were good. Fish was either too fisher in smell (nope) or dry. The pasta offerings were fine. The main problem I saw for the buffets was that the stations became extremely tight to maneuver about because there is also bar-seating in front of all the buffet stations. Yes there are tables/chairs throughout but the bar seating was difficult. They had a children'es buffet area that seemed to offer a wide selection for kids. Lunch was fine. Before I leave the meal portion..... breakfast in the buffet area is not the way I want to start my day.... everyday! Not that the food was bad, it was that because of the layout, this area becomes the worst traffic congestion for any ship! Sorry..... but people are rude.... no patience early in the morning..... and since it's a buffet, they think it entitles them to eat almost the entire platter of eggs or bacon or waffles. Seriously, the lines of people trying to get their breakfast sends them to start saying the food for breakfast is bad. Not really..... Come on..... you can't screw up scrambled eggs or waffles or french toast or bacon or sausage. I think (as it happened to us) we get frustrated having to wait on lines in the morning to eat and especially coffee! I did run out of food at various times on various days for breakfasts, but I think that is always because when there are delays, one will consume or take more so that they do not have to stand back on line for seconds. Fix the seating in the buffet area during dry dock and you will alleviate this problem. Maybe. Arrived at our superior balcony stateroom. Nice size and having the seating area/vanity closer to the balcony gave it a more comfortable feeling. Liked having the bed closer to the bathroom for those late night runs! lol Stateroom was clean, smelled fresh and the bathroom the same. Never greeted by our stateroom attendant the first day/night - something that should have been. In fact, after we showered and left for dinner/evening, we returned to find the Cruise in Review for the next day on our bed BUT the bathroom was never done after us leaving for dinner/evening and the bed was not turned down. If they had time to drop off the Activities Schedule, then they should have done the room. Since I had a previously scheduled meeting the next morning with the hotel director, I brought it up and pleased to say that we had morning and evening service the rest of the cruise. :) When we met our room steward the 2nd day, he apologized for not introducing himself to me as well as not doing the cabin. Said that on the turn around day, they are swamped! That was OK.... So first evening's dinner. Late seating, table for 2 Aft against the window. Table was FANTASTIC!!! View was INCREDIBLE! Our waiter came over and we did the introductions. After so many cruises for so many years, I pretty much have my routines down pat; especially the dining room. I informed our waiter that we eat quickly and that we expect the service to be prompt, friendly and enjoyable. Once that was said, our pace for all meals were wonderful. No delays - we never had to wait to be fed with all of the other tables around us. This was how we wanted it and this is how we got it. Very pleased. Our waiter was fantastic! Very outgoing and had no problem with the English language at all. No his assist did not speak alot of English but knew enough to get by.Our waiter.... not at all a problem. Again, he was great! I know many people have complained about the dining room service and how long it takes. We did witness this first hand and saw that the overall time in the dining was way too long. There were those we overheard complaining that it took them 1.20hrs to get their meals, etc. I know that this is being addressed by mscCruises and they know that this need to be handled immediately. Food..... we had no complaints. Our choices were fine. Not huge portions but what we had was nice. Our meal started at 8:45p and we were walking out of the dining room at 10:05p. The lounges are magnificent and there are so many to choose from. The entertainment they have in their lounges (NOT THE THEATRE) need better music. The North American market know their music and what they like. Some of the duos/trios were OK, but to have them featured in lounges where being interactive with the audience is as important as what their drinking..... it was not! These lounges need to replace all of their lounge bands/duos/trios with American bands/duos/trios that will keep people in there! The music and the atmosphere go hand-in-hand. The better the music, the more fun people will have and that totals higher revenue because the bars are busy!! Now the Theatre......... some of THE BEST ENTERTAINMENT ON THE HIGH SEAS! I will give them credit for their shows in this venue. They are fantastic! I know there were some reviews that said the performers for all the shows are the same. Duh!!!!!!!! SOME of them perform in more than 1 show but MOST of them are incredible in their own performance. I was thrilled at the shows that they put on. I guess when one of their shows is Italian Opera and another show is singing... maybe the same person is doing both shows. That happens on every ship. I would hope that they bring on at various times, solo singers. Since there is no ship orchestra, these singers would have to sing to tracks or use one of the other bands on board. But..... I'm glad they've done away with the jugglers, comedians and novalty acts as other ships continue to use. Throw a singer in there like Bobby Arvon for example..... he would do incredible on the Divina!! Guest Services Desk. Not a problem there at all. Everyone we spoke with there had no problem speaking English and all were very friendly and helpful. These complaints that they couldn't find an English-speaking staff has no merit. In fact, we sat by the desk since this was one of the centers of the ship and never heard anyone complaining about the Desk being rude or not understanding them. Hmmm? Public announcements. Yep.... in 4 or 5 languages. So what?? This is a matter of safety and there should not be any issue here. MSC Cruises carries much more international people and being considerate for special and/or emergency announcements is fine with me. They do not do announcements throughout the day. Where do some of these people come up with saying that announcements run all day long. BS. Tender Service: Same as with any other cruise line. When the tender to an island, they sue the #number# system which seems to work well for all. There were no issues that I witness with this. I think the biggest misconception about MSC Cruises is that they do not care about their guests. From my point of view. NOT TRUE. What North Americans needs to understand is that the cultures from here to anywhere else is one simple thing when it comes to service aboard a cruise. 1. Europeans do not like to be bothered all the time by staff asking them if they "need a drink'.... "can I get you a towel"...... 'would you like another iced tea". When they want something, they will go after you and ask you to get them. 2. Americans like to be bothered all the time by staff asking them if they "need a drink'.... "can I get you a towel"...... 'would you like another iced tea". Those of us Americans that enjoy travel like and want to be pampered. That's how we are made up. We don't like it when we have to ask you to get us something. We want you to know that already so make sure you;re on your toes and ready with that iced tea! This is a problem that MSC needs to fix if they want the North American market. It is up to each division head on board any ship that relies on business from the North American to train their staff in how to catered to the US. We are a catered country and expect that when we travel, we are catered too. It doesn;t make us a bad person, it's just how the US is when it comes to travel - whether here throughout the states or aboard or even on a ship. Sorry, but so many of the complaints people have made about MSC.... well.... I just can't find them all. So they don't have a egg-grill in the buffet area. You want a certain style egg, go to the dining room. They ran pout of a dish you wanted in the buffet..... then ask someone for it. If they ran out of it, maybe it's because it was that good and many people wanted it. I'd rather have to wait for a dish then find it sitting soiled on the buffet station. Someone you spoke to couldn't understand you.... then you can always ask to speak to another. Maybe the overall food wasn't the best of ALL cruise lines. Remember that this is a family rated cruise line and is not Seaborn or Crystal. But there will always be something there for you to eat, soomeone you can speak with and most important...... someone that will say... welcome aboard! Overall... Yes I would and will cruise on mscCruises again here from the US. I am a high Pinnacle Member with Royal, close to Zenith with Celebrity and look forward to building points now with mscCruises. For their product and how they offer it, keep it up MSC Cruises.... you'll do fine here! Ciao Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
My wife and I decided to sail the MSC Divina for our 15th Wedding Anniversary, and enjoyed our cruise thoroughly... I do not understand many of the negative comments. The ship was beautiful and well maintained... The food was diverse, ... Read More
My wife and I decided to sail the MSC Divina for our 15th Wedding Anniversary, and enjoyed our cruise thoroughly... I do not understand many of the negative comments. The ship was beautiful and well maintained... The food was diverse, plentiful, and well-prepared... The staff was hard-working and very accommodating... The shows were very entertaining and professional... The excursions and disembarkation were very organized... We were in Room 8001 (inside stateroom) on Artemide Deck... Our room porter (James) was wonderful... Our room was ready roughly 15 minutes after arriving on the ship (roughly 2:45pm)... James apologized (in English) for the tardiness in preparation, explaining that many cruise-related preparatory tasks were somewhat delayed due to the late wrap-up of tasks from the previous cruise. James serviced our room at least twice a day, asking us on the first night which seating that we had for dinner so that he could ensure that he "turned-down" our bed each evening without disturbing us. We always had clean/fresh washcloths, towels, and linens. Every room porter that we encountered in the halls was "nice", greeting us (in English) anytime that we passed them. Most of our luggage was delivered to our room before 4:30pm, with our final bag arriving while we were attending the the pre-departure safety demonstration. We were assigned to the 2nd-seating for Dinner, per our preference... There were two waiters that attended to our needs (Hary and Made). Both waiters were very nice and recalled our meal & drink preferences each night at the Black Crab. We enjoyed our 4-course meals (appetizer, soup & salad, entree, and dessert) within 30 - 45 minutes each night. The nightly shows were entertaining & delightful (each lasting roughly 45 minutes)... The Captain and the Cruise Director were hilarious and very personable. Both seemed to be very interested in ensuring our comfort & happiness, as well as securing our future patronage. There are two aspects of the cruise that I believe that can be improved... 1. Creation and Strict-Enforcement of Adult-Specific Areas (Lounges & Discos) after 10:00pm -- there are a large number of youngsters on the cruise, so its hard for many adults to enjoy late-night entertainment areas 2. Dress-Code for Dining Areas -- shoes and shirts should be a strict requirement for all dining areas (including buffets) -- wet individuals coming into buffet dining directly from pool areas cause a slipping hazard on floor and dampen the chairs with their wet clothing -- shorts and jeans should not be allowed in main dining rooms on "formal" nights Overall, our cruise experience was excellent... I would encourage anyone reading the reviews to use their own judgement, as their are some individuals that are complainers by their nature... Unfortunately, there are also some individuals who have stooped to deceptions through pure exaggeration and untruths. Despite many of the bad reviews that I read prior to booking, I decided to take the cruise and form my own opinions... I'm so glad I did! Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
Hi everyone. We sailed on the Divina for a 7 day cruise which departed Miami on August 2nd, 2014. Overall, we had a fantastic cruise. Here are my thoughts and opinions about our experience. We had 2 families traveling together. Our family ... Read More
Hi everyone. We sailed on the Divina for a 7 day cruise which departed Miami on August 2nd, 2014. Overall, we had a fantastic cruise. Here are my thoughts and opinions about our experience. We had 2 families traveling together. Our family of 4 (husband, wife, 2 college-age kids), and another family of 6 (husband, wife, 3 college-age kids and an 82-year-old grandfather). EMBARKATION: As I posted previously from the port, embarkation day was a mess due to a gas leak at the terminal. Basically, thousands of people waiting to board were first stuck outside the terminal in the heat and there was much confusion about at which gate we would actually enter. The port authority employees were for the most part grouchy and not too helpful, which fueled the fire of the passengers' unrest. By the time we made it inside, there were understandably extremely long lines to actually check in. Upon check in, the MSC employee who helped us had zero information, and merely told us to "go sit over there to the left." Because they could not disembark the returning passengers until the port authority gave the AOK, the departing passengers could not board so that left a glut of people with nowhere to sit. Most were sitting on the tile floor, and it appeared especially hard on the elderly and those in wheelchairs. As the hours ticked by, there was no word on what was happening either from the port authority employees or from MSC employees. That was the big problem, no information. I understand that it was a serious situation, and a gas leak meant that the safety of everyone was top priority – however, some official information should have been imparted to the waiting passengers. As it was, everyone was disgruntled and there were a lot of rumors and hearsay floating about. Any information would have gone a long way to placate passengers. They finally opened up a seating area in NCL's part of the terminal so that people could get off the floor. A port authority employee told our group that it was MSC's fault, and a MSC employee told us (once we were onboard) that their hands were tied and it was the port authority that was calling the shots. SHIP/PUBLIC SPACES: The Divina is drop-dead gorgeous! Visually stunning. Beautifully designed, modern, but not over-the-top gaudy. There are a myriad of spaces onboard where you can sit, relax, read a book, enjoy a drink, chat with friends or fellow passengers, or just take in the surroundings. One of my favorite things to do during our cruise was to get up before my family, grab a book, and find some place to settle in for an hour or two. With somewhere around 17 bars/lounges onboard, you'll never run out of a place to relax. Remember that deck 7 runs from fore to aft, and from there you can access anyplace you need to go. FELLOW PASSENGERS: On our sailing, there was a fantastic mix of international passengers. On one elevator ride, I heard Italian, French, German and possibly Portuguese being spoken. Loved it! One gentleman who helped me at the reception guest told me that he needed to be fluent in 6 languages in order to do his job properly. Impressive! I had a great conversation in the Calumet bar with 2 bartenders from India, and they told me some incredibly interesting things about their part of the country. I could cite many examples where it was fun interacting with other passengers and ship staff who were from all parts of the globe. The international atmosphere on the ship was one of the highlights for me. DINING: The buffet was enormous. I found the quality and the selection of the food to be quite good. The buffet tended to be a bit hectic at times, however we always found some place to sit. The staff clearing the tables was efficient and friendly, so as soon as a table was vacated it was promptly cleared and cleaned. Loved the fact that a portion of the buffet remained open until late (until at least 2 am). They had a make your own sandwich bar, as well as lots of fresh hot pizza in many varieties – something for everyone. It really fit the bill after an evening in the casino or on the dance floor. We had breakfast only once in the MDR and found it to be loud and a bit chaotic, so we chose the buffet for the rest of our mornings. We did not eat in the buffet for dinner. We opted for the MDR each evening. I loved the experience. Dinner was leisurely, never rushed, with time between courses to chat. If you want to eat quickly, opt for the buffet. Courses were bread, starter/appetizer, soup or salad, main dish, and desert. If you'd like coffee with your desert, just ask. We opted to go to the coffee bar after dinner each night to have a fancier coffee! Our waiter Jose was excellent, though it appeared to me that he did not have enough help. He had 4 tables (two 10-tops, a 6-top and a 2-top) basically to himself. Dinner portions were perfectly sized – not gargantuan, but enough to enjoy each course without leaving the table stuffed to overflowing. Some at our table requested more than one serving of each course, which was always an option. We had the Allegrissimo Classic package, so we requested bottles of water for our table to supplement the sometimes slow refilling of water glasses. Worked out just fine. (Your waiter can take bottled water, wine and soft drink orders, but a bar waiter will take cocktail orders.) My son celebrated a birthday onboard, so I ordered a birthday cake for him. It was very reasonably priced - $18, and delicious! The staff carried it to our table and sang happy birthday to him. Really fun! ALLEGRISSIMO/DRINKS/BARTENDERS: We booked the classic package in advance. Loved, loved, LOVED this package. It was very affordable and made our vacation that much more relaxing. The Divina offered a huge selection of cocktails, wine, beer, liqueurs, cordials, soft drinks, and zero-proof drinks from which to choose. The bartenders were all excellent, and I found my drinks to be very consistent throughout the ship. The cocktail servers are not in-your-face, and I had to flag them down most times, which was fine by me. Many times if I went up to a bar to order a drink, a server would take my order and bring it back to where I was seated, which was nice. My only minor complaint is akin to that of the wait staff in the MDR – there were not enough cocktail servers. Seems to me like they are a tad overworked and in short supply. We found this especially to be true in the coffee bar where our group sometimes had long waits for service. ENTERTAINMENT: The shows in the Pantheon theatre are unlike anything else at sea. Frankly, I've found the entertainment to be spotty on our previous cruises – some very good, some wincingly bad. Not so on the Divina. Very good across the board. The live music throughout the ship was wonderful. One evening there was a live band playing Latin music in the Black and White lounge. We had a great time just watching everyone dance. The ship also had the usual cruise fare like bingo, trivia, various classes etc. Plenty to do for all interests. The entertainment staff did a great job of mixing with the passengers and keeping them engaged without being annoying. POOLS: We spent most of our time at the Garden pool and bar area. The pool was always full, but because of the small size it was mostly used for cooling off and chatting. The other 2 pools were always kept clean and there were plenty of loungers to be had, even with a full ship. Prime spots right next to the pool went quickly, but I was happy lounging on the side of the ship away from the main pool area. Also got better bar service there. The main pool deck has a large screen where movies were shown in the evenings, and there were a couple of fun dance parties there as well throughout the week. CASINO: I found the slots to be tight (a sentiment echoed by some of my fellow passengers), but the casino was beautiful and had a great vibe to it in the evenings. There was no bar wait staff in the casino – but if you sidled up to the bar the bartenders were prompt and quick to take your order. They held slot tournaments on our two sea days – which were free to join. (There is an entry fee on some cruise lines.) Prizes were $200, $100 and $50 in free play. I did not play the table games, but everyone seemed to be having a grand time. The décor in the casino was gorgeous and classy. ONBOARD ANNOUNCEMENTS: This is one of the things I adored about our time aboard the Divina. In order to contribute to a relaxing cruise vacation, general announcements were kept to a bare minimum. The captain would make an announcement once a day, and you'd hear from the cruise director maybe once per day. Barring that, or an emergency, the loudspeaker was not going off all day long announcing bingo, jewelry sales, excursion bookings, casino contests, drinks of the day etc. I honestly hated that part of our past cruises. All that info can be found in your Daily anyway. CUSTOMER SERVICE ONBOARD/DISEMBARKATION: I will say that we found all our interactions with any staff throughout the ship a very nice experience. Everyone was pleasant and professional. I only ran into a couple of customer service related issues. I had prebooked the Allegrissimo Classic package. Upon getting our first 2 drinks in the buffet, however, we noticed we were charged for them. I immediately went to the reception desk and they printed new cards and said they'd remove the charges from our bill. The day before disembarkation, I asked for a printout of our bill. Those drinks were still on the bill. I pointed it out, and was assured the charges would be removed. The night before disembarkation, we were to have our luggage in the hallway outside our room by 1:00 a.m. Bags were to be picked up and a copy of our final statement was to be delivered to our room. By 3 am our bags were still there. I called reception and they assured me that they would be picked up. When we awoke at 6:30 a.m. our bags were still in the hallway and we did not have a copy of our bill. I went to reception and was faced with huge lines at both desks. I had to wait for 50 minutes just to get to speak with someone. (Again, they were extremely short-staffed with just 2 workers at each desk - especially on a morning when they could anticipate a glut of passengers needing to settle and/or contest their bills.) When I finally got a printout of my bill, those 2 drink charges were *still* on the bill. The guest relations person had to call someone from the bar staff to remove it. Third time's a charm I guess. I then had to let them know that our bags were not picked up. I will say that the person at the desk was a bit accusatory and asked me what time we put them out (she was the one exception to the consistently pleasant attitude I encountered throughout the ship). I let her know that they were out well before 1:00 a.m. She made a call and told me someone would pick them up. Bags were still there at 9 am and we were to disembark at 9:15. I finally found our room steward and he called someone to assist. After his help, a couple of very nice gentlemen finally came to pick up the bags. They were there in baggage claim shortly after we got through customs, so all was well in the end. THE UPSHOT: Despite a couple of hiccups, our experience with MSC aboard the Divina was very enjoyable. I would not hesitate to sail with them again.   Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
MSC Divina Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.3
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.4
Enrichment 1.0 3.2
Service 4.0 3.6
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates 5.0 3.7

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