1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. MSC Cruises
  4. MSC Divina Review
  5. MSC Divina Cruise Reviews
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
This was our 4th cruise in Yacht Club. Although it still is a good experience we felt that it was not that good as before. The embarkation in Civitavecchia went smoothly as always. We were in the terminal already before 10 and had to ... Read More
This was our 4th cruise in Yacht Club. Although it still is a good experience we felt that it was not that good as before. The embarkation in Civitavecchia went smoothly as always. We were in the terminal already before 10 and had to wait until 10.30 that they opened the “lounge”. This is quite understandable. We were among the first to embark the ship but our luggage came first after 4 pm. The security drill is quite a torture in MSC as not all the people now it is mandatory or they time management is rather poor and they arrive almost 30 minutes late and everybody else need to wait for them. The cabin was good and the butler made all the changes we needed. That was actually all we needed her during the cruise. We are quite capable of walking alone to the restaurant or to the theatre or do not need to make us look important by walking around with the butler. By the week we noticed that it not the butler who takes care for your room but another person who is supposed to be invisible. The poor lady was almost scared to death when we managed to surprise her. She was still very lovely and polite always when we saw her afterwards. The butler herself was one day bringing something to the minibar and just entered the cabin without knocking with her key. That was a bit disturbing. The dinner in Le Muse was a bit chaotic. It was quite hard to get the table we wanted and although complaint the Maitre d´seemed to ignore us all the cruise. So no points for him. The food in Le Muse is very mediocre and the selection was not to our tastes every night. The waiters do their best but some of them seemed to be rather stressed and running and dropping things constantly. They serve each day couple of open wines, but quite often it was still too difficult for the waiter to now which wine you have been drinking. In the lunch time the selection by the YC pool is limited but beats the MSC public buffet which should be avoided by all means. The lunch is also served in Le Muse but we did not make but the first day. The own pool area is the real advantage of YC. In the older ships, like Divina, the layout is much better than for example in Seaview. The public pool seemed to be extremely crowded all the time. In Palma there is a dinner under the stars. That means just tables by the pool and a small buffet serving the same dishes they have served there for lunch. We hade the last table which meant that waiters did not find us to refill the wine glass. When we complaint it, the whole bottle was leaven in the table and we never saw them again. The captains cocktail party was this time a joke while the captain never made it. The officers and staff stood there for 15 minutes and disappeared like they were denied to speak if the captain is not present. No explanations given. For excursion the staff escorted you to the bus. In Palermo this worked and we were the first to enter the bus but in Marseilles it failed and we were the last to enter. The entertainment shows are very Italian. They really had no idea at all but the singers were exceptionally good and the dancers did their best with the strange costumes. We are still getting a bit bored with the standard acrobatic numbers which seem to be mandatory on every cruise. Yacht club has its own seating in the upper balcony with a staff member guarding it. We only used it once while the seats are not that good and there are always available seats in the theatre. The Yacht Club is still one of the best possibilities to enjoy some luxury for reasonable prices and we have already booked our next YC cruise. Without YC experience we would not recommend a MSC cruise. Our main wish for MSC is though that they would improve the kitchen in YC dinner restaurant. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We choose this cruise based on 1. Itinerary, 2. date, 3. expense. Meet all our requirements. Compare with other cruise line such as Royal Caribbean, Princess or Carnival, the food choices with MSC is limited, but with the money you ... Read More
We choose this cruise based on 1. Itinerary, 2. date, 3. expense. Meet all our requirements. Compare with other cruise line such as Royal Caribbean, Princess or Carnival, the food choices with MSC is limited, but with the money you saved, you can eat whatever you are missing on the shore and even better. The cabin is spacious and clean, there is always dancing class going on, the gym is one of the largest I have seen on the cruise ship. One thing to note about Marseille port, it's a LONG walk to the free shuttle bus, and it's not very enjoyable walk, so take the taxi or cruise ship shuttle out. The embarkment process is the best I have ever been to, everything moves swiftly, we were boarded at no time. The disembarkation process has little glitch, two people from our party were stopped at the exit, apparently computer has flagged them for balance not cleared, even we paid the night before. I find this strange, even if there is a balance, they should charge us the balance using the card on record, not stopping us. This actually caused us to missed the train. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We were visiting from Illinois and chose this cruise because it fit our schedule and the price seemed reasonable. We did spend additional money on entertainment and drinks, but in the end it was still a good value, especially with kids. ... Read More
We were visiting from Illinois and chose this cruise because it fit our schedule and the price seemed reasonable. We did spend additional money on entertainment and drinks, but in the end it was still a good value, especially with kids. Weather was great! Pluses: Nice looking ship with a variety of live entertainment, shops, bars, and activities. Great itinerary with interesting ports. Wide stairways made it easy to skip the elevator wait. Getting on and off the boat was generally smooth. The kids loved the mini-bowling. The cabin had adequate room even with the sofabed opened up. Beds were comfy. Minuses: Quite a few maintenance issues. Among the things which did not function for most or all of our cruise were one of the bowling alleys, the racecar simulator, some of the indoor hot tubs, several treadmills, and the air hockey games. The cabin bathroom was rusting in parts and smelled faintly of sewage. The pools tended to be overcrowded. There is a lack of public toilets, mainly due to poor design (one toilet stall covers a ridiculously large amount of area, even with a full sink inside!). Mixed: - The food. Breakfast was fine but repetitive. The buffet was OK but seafood and fresh fruit tended to disappoint. Snacks and desserts were often the best items. Main dining meals were slow to arrive and not consistently high quality, although they were sometimes good. We got the Fantastica package which offers free bottled water in the main dining room. When in Europe we are used to paying for water, Americans who complain about that forget that even a 15% tip is now considered stingy stateside. - The ship design. It takes some getting used to, although there are maps everywhere. Lots of zigs and zags. Among the more confusing areas are the buffet, the virtual world, and Deck 5 (where you have to wander among cabins to find the reception). Service: We found all the staff friendly and polite, and room service was very prompt. However, the customer service procedures were often baffling. I sometimes was bounced around between places to get charges dropped, and it would usually take about 5 minutes of a staff person pecking away at their keyboard to get even simple account changes made. Communication with guests could certainly be improved. I suspect one reason the lines are reception are long is that the onboard systems are poorly integrated. Ports: We did not do any excursions, and avoided the paid shuttles. Going independent did make things a bit harder, especially when the port was in an industrial wasteland, but when the official bus costs more than a taxi it doesn't make much sense to use the bus. We encountered a number of MSC-organized tours, and given the large group sizes and lack of English we don't feel we missed much. It's definitely worth buying an internet package if you're going independent, you will need to do a lot of searching and mapping. Passengers: Mostly Italians, but a fair number of French and Germans too. It's Europe so people smoke on the balcony. Lack of a common language made it harder to strike up casual conversations, and we didn't really get to know anyone the entire time. I can imagine this could be a drawback for the kids club, though to be honest our kids tend to shy away from kids clubs anyway. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose the MSC Divina cruise in the Mediterranean because of its unique itinerary for a seven night cruise and because of the opportunity to have a choice of ports from which to embark. Both of these were different from the other cruise ... Read More
We chose the MSC Divina cruise in the Mediterranean because of its unique itinerary for a seven night cruise and because of the opportunity to have a choice of ports from which to embark. Both of these were different from the other cruise line's offerings and paid it off. Also, since we were flying from Los Angeles to Europe, we wanted to see as much as we could each day, so no days at sea was exactly what I was looking for. We chose to board in Marseille since my husband wanted to spend a couple days in Paris prior to the cruise. As for the cabin, we paid for an inside guarantee with the "Fantastica" experience and were very surprised to be upgraded to a mid-ship balcony. Although the ship is a bit dated, it was very clean, the service was excellent across the board and the balcony cabin was very roomy. Our cabin attendant - I Putu Kertajaya, was excellent, and honored our requests. The itinerary included Marseille, Genoa, Civitavecchia (for Rome), Palermo, Cagliari, Palma de Mallorca, and Valencia. We were fortunate weather-wise with only two days of rain and good weather for the rest of the ports at the end of May, and to have calm seas. Previously having sailed many times with Princess, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Disney, and Carnival, I was curious about what differences would exist with MSC, so I read many Cruise Critic reviews. I learned that there would be differences from the above mentioned cruise-lines in the food and entertainment offerings so I was not surprised to find this to be the case. Both the buffet and the dining room menus have less entree options. Also, our "Fantastica" level of service included water bottles at meals in the dining room, (we found out late into the cruise) all who had not paid for this had to purchase water at lunch and dinner in the dining room just to get a glass of water with the meal. We were accustomed to being served free water at lunch and dinner in the dining rooms prior to this experience, so this was an unusual difference for us. Also, the entertainment in the theatre was not innovative or inspired and had the nightly repetition of the same talent, unlike others we have sailed with, but I was aware this would be the case from the reviews I had read. A variety of styles of music and dancing could be found in the lounges for those who enjoy that. The ports were all very pleasing and we explored most of them on our own taking trains and buses with the exception of two ship's excursions. Since people were embarking and debarking each day on this itinerary, it was hard to get a Cruise Critic meeting or Meet & Mingle party together. Also, with no days at sea, time was limited. We received a note in our cabin that the meeting date was cancelled, but then rescheduled for dinner in the Asian Fusion (new) Galaxy lounge/restaurant. This was a delightful sushi dinner with two ship's officers and just four of us Cruise Critic members. It was a very special evening for us on the ship and the two officers were extremely friendly and personable. This was one of the highlights. We had a really good week with the knowledge that this experience would be different in terms of food and entertainment. If you are accustomed to the cruise-lines mentioned above or the luxury lines, you will have a good time IF you are aware of differences and change your expectations...it's all in the expectations and this was a great daily itinerary. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Having read the reviews prior to booking I was a bit apprehensive. No need to be. Embarkation in Civitavecchia was very easy and swift. Just be sure if you're travelling to the City by train to validate your train ticket, we ... Read More
Having read the reviews prior to booking I was a bit apprehensive. No need to be. Embarkation in Civitavecchia was very easy and swift. Just be sure if you're travelling to the City by train to validate your train ticket, we accidentally didn't and were fined by a conductor. I imagine its a common revenue raiser. So we were in a bad mood due the train experience but were very pleased we could board the ship upon our arrival. The cabin was excellent, a lot larger than I expected (outside Bella cabin 5071). During our stay it was cleaned probably twice each day, we had a fantastic cleaner. The ship itself is excellent. We didn't find it too hard to get around and work "things" out. The elevators are often busy and easier if able to sometimes take the stairs. We quickly worked out that waiting in line for your turn musn't be a common European/Italian trait. This was most evident at the Ports queuing for hop on hop off buses. But it's something we got use to and just had to take in our stride (and nothing to do with the ship - they can't teach manners). We found the service on board was excellent. Only very minor things like asking for the price of a bourbon and coke at dinner was met with "I don't know" by the waiter. And she didn't find out -so saved me some money by not buying one. But again no big deal. The food in the Balck crab was great. We only ate there twice purely as we were often too busy to make the dining times and the buffet was more convenient. We didn't try any of the extra pay restaurants. We didn't take the drink packages as they were very expensive in Australian dollar terms. Particlularly as we had 4 in the cabin, my wife and a 4 and 9 year old that would all have had to take the package. Our children don't drink soft drink, my wife doesn't drink much. The sports bar was a favourite spot. You could order burgers, nuggets hot dogs etc. whilst watching world sporting events. The staff were exceptional. Whilst we cruised, there was a 10 beer for 25 Euro beer special. This was the best value/deal we could find for drinks on board by a long way. The theatre shows were excellent. We went every night and the kids also loved them. We played bingo a couple of times which again the kids loved, but I thought this was overpriced given the prize. I read some reviews abot the buffet. The whole family thought the range and quality was excellent. Though busy at times, you could always find a table. We rarely needed lunch on shore after the excellent breakfast. The access times to food on board should mean you'll never be hungry. Before cruising we probably had high expectations of the kids club. We didn't really give it a chance as when we signed the kids up, they basically seemed to be doing craft and drawings (it seemed a bit like baby sitting). My 9 year old and his friend pleaded with us not to stay as they basically wanted to play soccer on deck every spare moment. The kids that were there seemed very happy, just wasn't for our boys. The on deck soccer pitch was excellent. My son went on the waterslide, not sure why but it was too slow. He stopped in it a couple of times. Might have been water flow? Anyway he went on it a couple of times, but thought it average. The pools looked fantastic. We used the spas near the basketball court they were a bit quieter than the main ones. I tried the pool but it was a little too cold for me. We never did any of the cruise organised tours, made our own way on shore. Never used the boat shuttle as there was generally cheaper options at the port. It was greatly appreciated when on departure they waived the gratuity fee when requested. we preferred to tip direct and the gratuity fee is significant money in Australian dollar terms due the exchange rate. My wife gets very sea sick normally. This was a major concern and risk when we booked. Thankfully she was completely fine as were our kids with no ill effects whatsoever. Our friend unfortunately did and does suffer motion sickness so she spent some time in her cabin unwell. The boat and the ocean was very stable and smooth sailing. When organising our next holiday cruise, MSC would be my first choice based on value and quality. When booking this cruise part of the reason we chose MSC was the price so I was concerned the cheaper price would be reflected in service, quality or "somewhere", I was happy to find this not the case. I'd happily recommend the Divina to anybody looking for an excellent family cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
wanted to try the yacht club experience and do not regret! The only thing we missed was an indoor pool or indoor Jacuzzi for the Yachtclub. We also found the yachtclub restaurant way to far from the yachtclub cabins.You have to walk all ... Read More
wanted to try the yacht club experience and do not regret! The only thing we missed was an indoor pool or indoor Jacuzzi for the Yachtclub. We also found the yachtclub restaurant way to far from the yachtclub cabins.You have to walk all the way to the other side of the ship. Food was very fine, but not realy special. The gala night had a very simple menu. The waiters are very friendly in the Muze! The ship is beautiful, The staff very friendly. The shows are good but just not that good as the MSC seaside. The decoration of the shows is quiet simple. The Casino is great. Very little smell from the smoking area. We didn't do any organised excursions. In Palermo. The hop on Hop of that was great to see the city. In Cagliari we just took the bus up the hill to Porcel to visit the beautiful kathedral and walked all the way down. We have already been to Rome. A good alternative for Civitavecchia is taking a taxi to the Tenuta dell'Argento restaurant at 10 minutes drive from the city. It is a farm in the countryside we you have the best fresh meat restaurant. If I would go again on a cruise with Msc, but always in Yachtclub. All the rest is to crowded. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
The Divina is a beautiful ship, for sure. Clean, elegant, spacious. Definitely NOT American. And that's not a bad thing. We have plenty of "American style" cruiselines and to have another option is a plus. We've ... Read More
The Divina is a beautiful ship, for sure. Clean, elegant, spacious. Definitely NOT American. And that's not a bad thing. We have plenty of "American style" cruiselines and to have another option is a plus. We've recently returned from a 20 day Transatlantic journey and over the course of the cruise I've formed many opinions of this ship and the cruiseline in general. I'll start from the beginning. Sit back and relax- this may be information overload, but a lot of questions will be answered. Embarkation. Your cruise ticket will have a recommended time for your embarkation. Ignore that and get there when you want to. 11:00 am is fine. They will not turn you away. We did, however, have to wait awhile because as we found out once onboard, two crew members jumped ship in Miami. Defected. Left. So of course, immigration was investigating. We didn't have to wait long, however. We were onboard by 1:00 pm. Once we crossed over the gangway to the ship we noticed a lot of the ship was cordoned off and we had to go up to the Buffet- along with everyone else. So of course, it was crowded. Embarkation day- that's to be expected. No worries. We got our food, found a table and enjoyed our first Divina meal. The buffet is very large and the food is plentiful, varied and good. You do have to look around because there are different options around every corner. Burgers, hot dogs, wraps, pizza, salad and fruit can be found in the center area between Manitou and Calumet buffets. Fruit juices, tea and coffee are available all the time. They tend to run out of creamer a lot, though. Daily specials and desserts will be on either side. Just wander around a bit to get your bearings. Window tables are, of course, the most popular. They do have too many handicap accessible tables- they are usually all empty. Sit at one if you must, but be prepared to move if necessary. After lunch we checked on our cabin, which our amazing cabin steward, Maskur, told us was "almost ready." We were able to drop off our backpacks and go explore a bit. It was when we dropped off our bags that we noticed that our balcony cabin was small and had nothing more than a bed, a desk and two nightstands. No sofa. Quite a shock and disappointment considering they did not show a picture or diagram of our cabin style anywhere on their website. Balcony cabins are shown to have a sofa. This was a major issue for us- especially for a 3 week cruise. We waited a day to address this with guest relations because the we know the first day or two is so hectic for them. When we did go to inquire about the sofa we were told sorry- nothing we can do, the ship was sold out. Not wanting to give up so easily, we went back the next day to talk to a different agent. He seemed more sympathetic and understood that we didn't feel that we got what we paid for and said he'd contact us once we left New York City to see if there was another cabin available and if not he'd see what he could do. He never contacted us so we returned to him. Sorry- there was nothing he could do. We asked for a supervisor and he went behind closed doors to speak to his supervisor. The supervisor told him he had spoken to me at the Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle and I had told him or cruise was great. Partly true- I had actually said everything was great but we were disappointed in our cabin, which, of course, was brushed off. We were bewildered and disappointed but decided to shake it off and not let it ruin our cruise. So just beware- there is a very large percentage of balcony cabins that have ONLY a bed, two nightstands and a desk. No sofa, as is pictured on their website. Deceptive advertising. Issue number two is do not purchase anything online prior to your cruise. If you do and want to cancel or change your order once onboard- you won't be able to. We purchased a photo package on their website prior to sailing. Once onboard we decided that we did not need 10 photos of ourselves so we asked to cancel. Sorry- you purchased online you have to cancel online. Okay. We paid for 10 minutes of internet service to cancel our package. Since we'd already set sail we could not access our online account! Back to the photo department. Sorry. Nothing they could do. Sigh. Okay... well- we purchased the package, we'll choose some photos in a few days. You have to purchase all 10 at the same time. We went to the photo department to choose some pictures and found 7 that were decent so we asked them to hold those 7 until we posed for more photos on Italian night. When we returned and chose a few more pictures to complete our order- they had lost the original 7!! We had given them our chosen photos and our cabin number. Anyway- long story short- we ended up getting the manager involved. End result- they reprinted some (some were never found on the computer) gave us about 14 pictures instead of 10 and we're supposed to get a full refund because of all the time we had to spend going through all the photos multiple times. Haven't seen the refund come through yet. We did receive an email that it is being processed. Muster drill- a waste of time. You could not hear or understand what they were saying. Had there been an emergency it would have been total chaos. Television- on a 3 week cruise the ONLY channel we could access in English was a British news channel. Can we say "Brexit overload?" One or two days they did offer a few free movies, but the test of the time your choices were to pay for movies, watch British news or turn it off. Okay- enough with the problems we had personally. On with the good. As I said the ship is beautiful. And clean! Our room steward- Maskur- was amazing. Our waiter and his assistant were both wonderful. The staff in the buffet worked very hard. They will interact with you and converse with you if given a chance. They are far from home and missing their families. Ask about their family! They will beam as they tell you about their home. Food- The food in the buffet is plentiful, varied and good. We chose to eat there on several evenings when we didn't want to dress up for dinner. It was always great. The Black Crab is a beautiful restaurant. The variety is somewhat limited in my opinion but there was always something I could find and the portions are big. I never had anything that wasn't hot and good. The best kept secret is the Sports Bar. Hamburgers, Reuben sandwiches, fish and chips, Ceasar Salad, wings- all complimentary and all good! Finding a table is sometimes a challenge though. There are only a few tables and people tend to gather there to play cards or just chat without ordering food. And you have to eat your food there- you can't order and take it anywhere else. The Piazza del Doge has complimentary cookies, cakes and sandwiches throughout the day and night. Gelato is $3.50 for a small cup or $5.50 for a large. They also make Sundaes and shakes for $6.50- $7.50. I can't speak to any drinks packages- we never buy those. Not worth it for us. There are always juices, tea and coffee available in the Buffet. The bed- comfortable enough for me. A bit on the firm side but I slept well. Activities- Dance lessons, origami lessons, craft sessions, trivia games, scavenger hunts, bingo, exercise classes, yoga, etc. are available throughout the day. The entertainment team is busy and energetic all day long. Shows - Mostly music. Singing, dancers, a ventriloquist one night. As with any ship- we enjoyed some shows and didn't care for others. That's up to individual tastes. Ports- we booked the cruise for the ports. This was a 20 day Transatlantic repositioning cruise with incredible destinations. NYC, Bermuda, Azores, Portugal, Malaga and Valencia, Spain, Marseilles and Genoa. Overnight in 4 of the ports, which was amazing! NYC- was way too cold for these Florida people! We stayed onboard on a nearly empty ship, which was nice. Bermuda ended up being canceled due to weather.... from what I heard this was the 3rd time in a row Bermuda has been cancelled- but that could be hearsay. We ended up in Tenerife in the Canary islands. A bit of a RIP off many felt, because we were supposed to have 2 full days in Bermuda, instead we got an extra sea day, and a not so great alternative port- and no refund on lost port taxes for Bermuda. It would have made more sense to give us extra time in one of our shorter ports- as we only had 6- 7 hours in several of our ports. I do understand, though, that there could be scheduling problems. Finally- MSC is a fine cruiseline and the Divina is a beautiful ship. The big area that MSC needs to improve on is communication. Talk to 3 different people about an issue and you will get 3 different answers. They are not consistent. Know this before you sail and you will be fine. Their website..... well- I'll just say it needs work and I'll leave it at that. Will I choose MSC for future cruises? Probably not. Crystal staircases and pretty decor can't make up for poor customer service and lack of communication. MSC is privately owned, answers to no one and simply does not appear to care about their guests. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
To be completely transparent about my review, we booked this cruise about a month before we set sail. We took advantage of MSC's status match, which only put us at the silver level. We paid for a very inexpensive inside guarantee ... Read More
To be completely transparent about my review, we booked this cruise about a month before we set sail. We took advantage of MSC's status match, which only put us at the silver level. We paid for a very inexpensive inside guarantee room, but when we were assigned a room, we were upgraded to an aft-facing balcony. The upgrade was so unexpected, and the room was so awesome, the cruise already turned out way better than we could have hoped. As for the actual cruise, as stated in many reviews, MSC has a very European flair. We quite enjoyed meeting so many Europeans on board, but this does make the experience slightly different than many mainline US cruises. Dinners in dining room are a little slower. The entertainment is a little more classical. We really enjoyed the Italian opera. The buffets can seem quite crowded, and since people take a little longer to eat, it can be hard to find a table, and not everybody has the same idea of what a line is. We found the ship to be beautiful, with many different types of lounges and public areas. The pools were quite large compared to some ships we've been on, with a water slide, an adults only area, a solarium, and many hot tubs. The gym was well appointed, but always crowded. It may be because the weather was not great. We really enjoyed the lecture that was given by a very interesting crew member about each upcoming port. It really helped us in our understanding of the places we visited. We found the service to be outstanding. Every crew member we interacted with was very helpful, polite, and interesting. We've read lots of reviews about the food being of poor quality, but we found it to be just fine. There was always something interesting to eat. Portions seemed just right, and our service at dinner was very responsive. An area that could use much improvement was the disembarkation process at ports. Lines to get off the ship were usually non-existent, and usually just turned into a mob. There was usually little or no supervision of this. Also, for some reason, our ship was always at the furthest dock. This meant that after fighting the crowd to get off the boat, you had to fight another crowd to get on buses that would take you to the port entrance. In some instances, MSC actually charged for some bus rides. We usually took the long walk to avoid the crowds, but in some ports we weren't allowed to walk. Though we stopped at a lot of ports, many stops were for 8 hours or less which made exploring the ports difficult. There also didn't seem to be many interesting excursions to choose from through MSC. Our room was very nice. It was relatively large with a nice couch seating area. The TV was pretty useless, but we didn't watch it anyway. The balcony was huge. There were 2 lounge chairs, 2 regular chairs, a table, and still plenty of room. Bathroom and shower were very comfortable. Overall, we had a great time on our first transatlantic cruise to Italy. We would recommend it to anyone, and would definitely hope to cruise on MSC in the future. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose this cruise for the itinerary, because several ports had an overnight giving 2 days in those ports. I saw Divina launched in Marseille in 2011 and sailed on her as a solo traveller the following year, and loved it, so was looking ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the itinerary, because several ports had an overnight giving 2 days in those ports. I saw Divina launched in Marseille in 2011 and sailed on her as a solo traveller the following year, and loved it, so was looking forward to sailing on her again. I have a friend I travel with now but we choose to have our own cabins. Paying a single supplement is huge so we always book interior cabins. I booked this cruise roughly 18 months prior to departure and choose cabins on deck 9 close together. On getting our final payment papers I discovered we had been allocated different cabins 4 decks apart, not the cabins I had chosen. I contacted MSC Sydney and they said MSC had the right to change cabins even though I was under the assumption we had in fact paid more for cabins midships on a specific deck. Eventually we were allocated cabins on the same deck but deck 13 forward - not an ideal position as far as I was concerned. My friend and I were very disappointed and in fact I didn't want to take the cruise. We are both Black Card members with MSC but that did not change the situation. Our early preference dinner seating had also been changed to late seating. Once on board in Miami we went directly to the Black Crab restaurant to ensure we could get first seating for dinner as we both require to eat early for health reasons. We were told there were no seats left and that early seating was reserved for American guests - that did not impress us. Thankfully we recognised a head waiter we had met on an MSC cruise from South Africa last year (and he remembered us) and he organised seating for us at the early sitting. Having two days in port was fabulous as it gave you the option to stay ashore in the evening. New York was our first port and we used the Hop on Hop Off bus that included a boat tour to the Statue of Liberty. Great value for money to get around NYC. Bermuda was the second port but unfortunately there was a medical emergency and we had to turn back towards the US for a helicopter transfer, which took about half a day. During that time a storm developed near Bermuda and stopped Divina from getting into Kings Wharf. We had 5 fairly rough cool days at sea before arriving in Ponta Delgado in the Azores. I'd been there before and just loved it the first time. The weather was also fabulous - they'd had several days of bad weather so we were lucky. Teneriffe in the Canary Islands was substituted for Bermuda but just for one day. Lisbon, Portugal our next port was great. We had an overnight and left early the next morning. Remaining ports for a days visit were Malaga and Valencia in Spain, Marseilles ending in Genoa. We were joining MSC Sinfonia the following day for a Mediterranean cruise so an overnight in Genoa - a really surprising city. We mainly used the Hop on Hop off bus or just walked around the port. Most port authorities have their own shuttle buses too and fro the entrance, often free so there is no need to book the MSC shuttle which was often quite expensive. The food was good and the buffet has an excellent choice of food, although I feel the restaurant menu is not as good as it was when I first started cruising with them. The entertainment was very good, however on the sea days there was not a to to do as the pool deck areas were not usable, due to rough seas and low temperatures. A lot of passengers spent their days in the covered pool but to me it was like a sauna and very noisy. If you decide to book this repo, make sure you take adequate warm clothing - a lot of passengers hadn't researched temperatures, and MSC sold a lot of jackets. Thankfully I had done the research and had a down filled puffer jacket and body warmer. New York hovered on freezing on both days and several other ports were not at all warm and the wind was quite cold, so my jacket and body warmer got a lot of use. The Social media package is a good option to keep in touch with family and friends and much cheaper than buying a full internet plan. This wasn't advertised on the website but I had used it on previous years with What's App being my prime app. It's also much faster than Messenger and more secure. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. Unfortunately they are not offering the same one next year or we would be on it again. 1. The ship is beautiful! The cabins are spacious and clean. The ship overall is kept in top ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. Unfortunately they are not offering the same one next year or we would be on it again. 1. The ship is beautiful! The cabins are spacious and clean. The ship overall is kept in top notch form. Both in repairs and cleanliness. 2. The food is very good. We did wish that MSC offered free dining in more locations like Norwegian cruise line does. Eating in the dining room every night got monotonous. 3. The entertainment was very good. Talented dancers and singers, but VERY repetitive. The opera could be eliminated, although they were very good singers. Other entertainment in the bars was very pleasant. 4. We had no issues with embarkment and disembarkment. The embarkment was slow, but apparently not a MSC issue, but customs issue... so I heard. Once they began though it happened quite quickly. Most of the luggage was in our rooms within the hour. The other suitcase was more like two to three hours. We didn't sit and wait, so I'm not sure exactly. We went to the sport bar right away because no one was there. That worked our great. 5. Lovely pools. Enjoyed the depth because they weren't packed full of standers. They were deeper pools, so you had to swim somewhat. 6. The dining staff rating is a bit lower because of this being a European ship. They don't gush over the customers as we Americans are used to on other cruise lines, tho they weren't rude either. The bar waiters and waitresses seemed quite pleasant. 7. Our room steward was very nice but due to the language barrier he didn't say much, but always smiled. No towel animals or towel persons as we have grown to expect from other cruise lines..no big deal. 8. There was a morning activity at the pool each day which I though was great. Stretching, exercise, dance lessons...etc. As I said earlier. I really wish they would have offered the exact same itinerary for 2020...disappointed. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our 32nd cruise on many different cruise lines and our 4th on the Divina. I have written positive reviews on the Divina in the past mentioning the nice ship, the interesting international diversity, the great entertainment and ... Read More
This was our 32nd cruise on many different cruise lines and our 4th on the Divina. I have written positive reviews on the Divina in the past mentioning the nice ship, the interesting international diversity, the great entertainment and good food. However, I now feel compelled to write about a few issues that I hope get addressed and that other guests should know about. The first issue that guests should be prepared for is if their itinerary (or the previous ship’s itinerary) includes Columbia. Apparently, the Customs and Border Patrol found some illegal drugs in a toilet on the Divina last fall and are being very careful. The cruise before us went to Columbia and their disembarkation on Feb 21 was delayed 3 hours while every non-US citizen was fingerprinted before leaving the ship and the ship was inspected. That, in turn, caused a delay of 3 hours in our embarkation in Miami. I’m not complaining. I’m just letting you know of possible delays in case you have early flights. The second issue is the new drink packages that were changed in November. We signed up for our cruise in June. We made the reservation knowing the ship and seeing a new promotion labeled “Drinks on Us”. The package was labeled “490W19 – FREE UNLIMITED DRINKS” on the invoice. We thought this was similar to other packages on Celebrity and NCL where there are usually some limitations based on the price of the drinks. When we got on the Divina and tried get the drink of the day, we were told it was not covered by our drink package. In fact, most normal drinks like the Bahama Mama, Miami Vice, Pina Colada, Mai Tai and daily specials were not covered. They showed me the flyer about our package that stated “Savor the freedom to satisfy your thirst at any moment with a dedicated selection of house wines by the glass, one brand of draft beer (Heineken*) and/or Miller Lite bottled beer (for Caribbean itineraries only), selected spirits and cocktails, ….” It turns out that the “selected spirits” were only their “house brands” that only included Bacardi White Rum, Seagram 7, Smirnoff vodka, etc. AND only one of them per drink. Out of their menu of cocktails at the bar, only two were included in this package, and never the drink of the day. The only mixed drinks included “on their list” were “Rum & Coke, Gin & Tonic, Vodka & Lemon, Whiskey & Coke, Long Island Iced Tea, Cape Cod, Moscow Mule”. I even asked for a Rum Punch and at two bars, I was denied. The restrictions were based on the house brand, not the price of the drink. On the first day at sea, after our Cruise Critic Meet and Greet, I got an appointment with an assistant bar manager and expressed my displeasure at this overly restrictive drink package, especially compared with other cruise lines, that I was not aware of the limitations when I signed up for the cruise and the inconsistency in applying the restriction across the various bars. I also questioned why we couldn’t just pay for the difference on a drink by drink case if we needed a second spirit, like on other cruise lines. He explained that this drink package was new and they were having problems implementing it. He suggested that we buy the higher drink package, but with no discount. We declined. As a solution, we started asking for simplified drinks with only one spirit, like “Bacardi with fruit juices”. Later, some bars were serving a simplified Pina Colada even though it was not “on their list”. Related to this was the long wait times to be served at the bars. The bar staffs seemed very inefficient and unorganized. They would just make one drink at a time. There was no sharing of tasks between them (like "I'll make that drink since I'm already making one"), a lack of pre ordering one person ahead so that simple or related tasks could be combined, and poorly laid our stations requiring staff to constantly run back and forth. They also constantly added too much ice to slushy drinks before blending so that a third of the drink had to be thrown out. Combine that with their "short pouring" resulted in weak drinks compared to other ships. Also, they insisted on printing out receipts and having you sign them. What a waste of time and paper. So be prepared for long waits and weak drinks. My third issue that I raised with assistant bar manager, the Safety officer and the Environmental officer was the lack of trash receptacles and poor housekeeping in the pool deck areas, especially on sea days. No one was picking up empty drink glasses, soda cans, straws, napkins and plates. It was windy and they were tipping over, spilling out leftover ice cubes, liquids and straws with blew around on the deck, some ending up in walkways causing slippery conditions and some being blown overboard. When I discussed this issue with the MSC officers, I mentioned that Celebrity had officers stationed on the stairs looking for hazards to ensure they were cleaned up quickly and that when I complimented the Celebrity officers for their vigilance, they stated that their captain had made Safety a very high priority. I also pointed out that other ships such as Celebrity and NCL have a number of large receptacles on the pool decks for cans and trash so that guests can help in housekeeping. The MSC officers did not seen to care about these safety and environmental issues. I did not see any changes during the rest of the cruise. A final and somewhat minor issue was limited to the dining room. There were 7 of us at our table and almost every medium rare steak that we ordered was either really very rare or way overcooked. And half of them were very gristly and the plain knives were not able to cut them up. They were so bad that we ended up sending 3 of them back for replacements. Luckily, we had a great waiter and he started to pre check the steaks before bringing them up to our table. Just a heads up. Again, the ship was nice, but there needs to be improvements in these areas before I return to the Divina. It's too bad because their itineraries are very nice. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
This was my second time on the Divina and DH first time - largest ship we have sailed on to date. We chose the Divina for our winter escape for the itinerary and price - excellent value. Embarkation- we arrived at the terminal at ... Read More
This was my second time on the Divina and DH first time - largest ship we have sailed on to date. We chose the Divina for our winter escape for the itinerary and price - excellent value. Embarkation- we arrived at the terminal at 1130 and after a short wait at security, breezed through the check in process and got to the waiting/preboarding area to the announcement that boarding would be delayed. Never got an answer to why Customs delayed it so...at 2:00 there were still small groups coming off the ship. Finally started boarding at 3 and on board at 3:30. Immediately went to see the restaurant manager to get our seating time changed and then up to our cabin. Our luggage beat us there, unpacked, then went to the safety drill. Note to MSC, thank you for having the drill in the various lounges, but don't have people bring the life vests if we aren't having to put them on. Huge tripping hazard when everyone is leaving dragging their vests behind them. Dining: we ate all of our dinners at Villa Rosa and had excellent dining companions. Our servers were excellent as well. Food is subjective but I will say food was average to good. Best cheesecake I have had for a long time and I enjoyed the duck and different pasta dishes. Food was served hot but I noticed that service was uneven. Some with different servers were getting dessert while we were getting our entree. We enjoyed talking at our table so slow service was not an issue for us but would be for some. We ate breakfast and lunch at either the buffet or the Black Crab restaurant when open. Only used the buffet during "off" times as it was normally PACKED, not appealing. Pizza is very good and we liked the salad and fruit bar. Ate once at the Sports Bar, good wings! Wish they could expand their food service hours and seating area (lose the bowling alley). Did not do any pay restaurants- would like to see the Eatery revamped with more inviting seating and the Galaxy change to a steakhouse. Ship and service: ship is beautiful, large, clean. We did not experience any service issues and found crew enjoyable. Room steward was very good. On sea days the Divina felt crowded and pool area was even more packed than the buffet, with the normal chair hogs. Evenings it was difficult to get seats at some of the bars, and some areas definitely needed more bar servers. Enjoyed the different music offerings at the bars, and only went to a few shows which were good. Would like to see the Golden bar and photo area revamped in the future as they are in the middle of a major walkway, and the Black and white lounge is under utilized. Stick a good band in there and it would be filled (band offering there for us was poor). Ports: we had a great time in all the ports and this was the number one reason why we chose this cruise. Tortola- grabbed a cab and went to the beach. Antigua and St Kitts did MSC excursions exploring both islands to see the major sites and both were well organized and informative local guides. Martinque we used a private tour, Visio tours, and the guide was excellent and saw the rainforest, rum distillery, and a beach. St Martin took the water taxi to downtown for shopping and some bar time, then back to the ship early to enjoy an empty ship. Weather was perfect!! Disembarking: did self walk off at 0800, as did the rest of the ship it seemed with a very long line. MSC if you want a smoother process set up a second exit point to move people faster! But in closing, we enjoyed our cruise and would choose MSC again. We enjoyed the multi national cruisers. We cruise to see new places and to unplug/relax. Mission accomplished! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this line as we'd previously been booked, and heard that the Yacht Club was very good and although perhaps not as good as NCL's Haven was so much better of a price that the rationale for booking was quite clear. To be ... Read More
We chose this line as we'd previously been booked, and heard that the Yacht Club was very good and although perhaps not as good as NCL's Haven was so much better of a price that the rationale for booking was quite clear. To be honest, we traveled on the Divina about 5 weeks previously and were so unimpressed that we would have cancelled this upcoming cruise if we could have. Well; that would have been a mistake! On our 1st cruise we had had several discussions with management and I believe that we were not the only folks who found problems, particularly with food quality, preparation and presentation in the YC dining room Le Muse. They brought in a new manager, Idris, who took charge and there was evidently a serious overhaul of food and other services in the YC under his direction. There was a dramatic improvement in service and food quality although this wasn't universal. I shall go into more detail below, but again I must reiterate that there was a palpable improvement to the point that would draw us back quite happily to Divina and possibly other MSC ships. We were delighted by the high level of service and attention from the staff. In particular one of the Assistant Butlers, Prankash was genuinely endearing and attentive. He was kind and always assisted whenever he could. The Officer Manager of the YC, Idris was outstanding. He checked constantly on all guests and operations and made rounds frequently. We cannot give enough credit to him for improving the YC operations, particularly dining, and also all service staff for their happy dedication to service. As mentioned above, the food quality and presentation had improved dramatically since our previous cruise. This said, MSC simply must start using better quality beef! In general, any of the beef dishes were almost unpalatable no matter how the cooking was done. Desserts need to be improved (frozen from an outside vendor?). As well, the quality of soups was not all that great. Salads were limited in that the only dressing available in general was oil and vinegar. The other dressings, even when available, were commercially prepared. But again, other foods such as pasta, fish and some vegetarian foods were excellent. And presented in a lovely fashion unlike what we'd seen on our cruise 5 weeks before. Whereas we used to almost look with trepidation towards our upcoming dinners in Le Muse, this was no longer the case and allowed for full enjoyment of the cruise. The cabin was lovely. Good storage. Kept quite clean. The bed was very comfortable too. The bathroom was a tad small but fine. Temperature control was excellent. Our main issue, and this applies to many newer ships, is that the balcony although large enough for recliner chairs if not full recliners (which we miss!), only had uncomfortable straight back chairs with one foot rest available. To truly enjoy a balcony experience (day and night), comfortable seating is a must and this needs to be addressed. On deck in the YC there was plenty of seating. There was a nice bar and buffet for breakfast or lunch. The pool was fine. The major drawback is that on days without any wind and a hot sun overhead, there was little to no shade or protection! We knew about this in advance and purchased high quality umbrellas that we could pack and held onto the chairs or a nearby railing quite well. These provided excellent sun protection and improved our enjoyment of the outside deck immensely. MSC really needs to rethink what seems to be a no (ship provided) umbrella policy. One significant issue though relates to overall cleanliness of the public areas of the ship including public washrooms (especially the ones outside of Le Muse) and surfaces like handrails. We have been on at least 50 cruises in the past and are used to seeing staff cleaning and polishing surfaces almost constantly, This was not so on Divina. Moreover, hand sanitation was not really enforced and yet there was an outbreak of norovirus on the ship! Use of hand sanitizer prior to entering dining areas or re-boarding the ship should have been enforced much more rigorously (with or without norovirus). Some public washrooms actually had unpleasant odours related to poor sanitation. This issue is not minor and in concert with the other more minor issues noted above reduced our overall score from excellent to 'good'. We did not go to the main shows this time. However we enjoyed thoroughly the small ensemble entertainment that was available throughout the ship! One could enjoy a piano-violin duo in one area, while in the next it was possible to enjoy high quality latin music and dancing! Just excellent! The ports of call were really quite good. We did not get off in Jamaica as Ocho Rios is not one of our favourites to say the least. We really liked Colombia, and also Panama. As for embarkation and disembarkation, I would say that the other cruise lines could learn something from MSC as regards treatment of suite or YC (Haven, Retreat) guests. This was done in an exemplary fashion and was seamless. It seems to us that MSC keeps trying to improve, and they are succeeding! Over time, it might even become our preferred cruise line! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We sailed on MSC Divina because we got got a bargain and to entice us we were "matched" to the level on NCL/Carnival, we found the ship to be nicely designed, our cabin was comfortable and the amount of amenities and dinning was ... Read More
We sailed on MSC Divina because we got got a bargain and to entice us we were "matched" to the level on NCL/Carnival, we found the ship to be nicely designed, our cabin was comfortable and the amount of amenities and dinning was plentiful, we were hesitant because people's reviews had made it seem like there was too much pasta on the menus, we found the opposite, the food was very tasty and the selections was great, they still need to work out a few kinks, in the black crab restaurant ( where we were assigned ) we had to wait for our coffee to accompany our desserts, but it seems like every cruise line is cutting staff and you don't get quite the prompt service that we expect. The itinerary was wonderful too, going to shore and coming back into the ship was painless and we loved the fact that the ship stayed longer in ports than most cruises we have taken, that was nice surprised. Another pleasant surprise was the entertainment in the theater, we enjoyed all of the shows, they did an amazing job and would certainly would do another MSC Cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
I’m writing this review as part two covering the last 10 days of a 21 day back to back sailing so I can detail the second cabin and Eastern Caribbean ports. For a more detailed overall review of our sailing please first see my part one ... Read More
I’m writing this review as part two covering the last 10 days of a 21 day back to back sailing so I can detail the second cabin and Eastern Caribbean ports. For a more detailed overall review of our sailing please first see my part one as this will be a shorter review covering only things specific to this sailing. As back to back passengers we were able to be some of the first allowed back on the ship, Yacht Club and special assistance passengers were gathering as we were queued to re board just ahead of them. As Aurea passengers we were entitled to two massages which is the first thing we went to schedule once on board. We then slipped by our cabin, met our steward and were able to drop off our carry on bags before heading to lunch. Aurea guests are allowed to eat in the lower Black Crab restaurant for embarkation day lunch, don’t miss this as it is one of the best lunches you will get on the ship, including special items available only that day. After our wonderful meal service on our previous leg I decided I wanted to give up our My Choice dining, where we could have a two top table (albeit tightly spaced), and asked if we could get an eight top group table for people from our Cruise Critic Roll Call. Arthur, our head waiter, was able to get one assigned and again we had good service with great company for all our MRD meals. I want thank the Divina dining staff for being so accommodating with our multiple special requests. We moved from an aft facing Fantastica cabin to this sailings forward Aurea Suite with large balcony. Cost for this cabin was about $1500 more for one less day. Aurea included the Classic drinks package at the time, we upgraded again to the Deluxe package which cost about $206 per person less than when we upgraded from the Fantastica included Drinks On Us package. So we got the Aurea perks including thermal spa access, two massages and a much larger stateroom for about $1100 more. I’ll go ahead now and say it wasn’t worth it, I really preferred the aft facing Fantastica balcony. As noted after looking at the special two tops for My Choice dining, with literally two inches between tables, we decided to forego that perk. In the end we didn’t even use the massages and cancelled them the day before. We also never used the thermal spa access as it really was a let down after being on Seaside. They even removed heated tile loungers so quite little remained to entice us back to the spa. We went to the Exclusive Top 18 solarium once, it couldn’t even begin to compare to the Aurea area on Seaside. In addition to being a pain to get to the loungers were barely different than the regular pool decks, the round cabanas, which were the only shade, were extra cost and bar service was sporadic and extremely limited. Servers had coolers stored in a side room where they got your drinks. The hot tub looked nice and was actually hot, the view down onto the main pool deck was questionable. Since I had sailed Divina in 2017 I was aware or these Aurea shortcomings, the sole reason I booked Aurea was the cabin. We were able to secure cabin 10007, a fairly rare opportunity as these suites book up early and deck 10 are considered the best. Be aware that each deck’s corner Aurea suite is different. Cruise Critic and YouTube proved invaluable in seeing the differences. While deck nine cabins are actually slightly larger, they have a significantly obstructed view from the bow structure and the useable balcony area is much smaller. This was a true suite with separate living area and bedroom, something I’ve grown to like after sailing many NCL suites. The living area had a couch that became a double bed, storage was a little limited and the TV was small (both rooms). The master bedroom was spacious with lots of storage, the view from those forward facing full windows was spectacular. What I didn’t expect was the overall dilapidated condition of this cabin. Our cabin steward, Eduardo, did everything possible to keep it clean, but overall it was a letdown. The couch/bed was horrible, the cushions were destroyed and it looked like it came from a yard sale. One of the end tables was missing a lamp so there was a hole in the top where it once was mounted. Over the desk in the main bedroom there were three lights missing, covered over by peeling duct tape. Everywhere the furnishings were chipped and had peeling scuffed corners. The worst by far was the bathroom. I did know there was a tub rather than shower, what I didn’t know was how dysfunctional it was. Having only a half glass partition water sprayed onto the floor at the back. It was also too high so the showerhead proved much too low for my 6’4” body to use. Getting back to that water issue, over the years it has evidently caused an issue under the bathroom floor. The bathroom had a severe mold smell, covered up with lots of bleach. I tried putting water into the floor drain to be sure that wasn’t it, we ended up having to leave the door closed as the horrible smell was then contained by the negative pressure from the air vent fan. I really should have said something on the ship and I did mention it on the post cruise survey, but it was so painfully obvious that I’m sure they’ve had a multitude of complaints. Until this ship has a refurbishment I would never recommend this cabin. The balcony is accessed from the side at the living area. It opens to a very narrow balcony where you can only walk forward to a wider forward section that is in front of the bedroom’s sealed windows. We had some wonderful sailings into and out of ports, but it became too windy for my taste once at sea, the aft facing balcony was better. Sun exposure was also a problem for me, again the aft balcony was better. I don’t regret booking this cabin as it was a unique experience that I have seldom seen available. On other ships I would consider booking Aurea again, on Divina it is highly unlikely as I do not see it being worth the increased price point, especially now that it includes a lower drink package. Aurea and Black status guests were assembled in the theater for disembarkation within 15 minutes of each other. Both were called at the same time to leave the theater to join the disembarkation line. We had a late flight home so debated whether to stay on the ship as long as possible or find a place to stay for the day, in the end we put our luggage out the last night and booked a day hotel for the time before our flight. We had time for breakfast in the MDR headed to the theater and left the ship as the first official group about 8:45am. As typically happens there were already people from later groups trying to get into their baggage areas even though their disembarkation color had not yet been called. We quickly found our bags and were through customs waiting with the masses for an Uber about 20 minutes after leaving the ship. We booked a day room at B Ocean Resort in Fort Lauderdale. While fairly expensive at $140 for an afternoon I couldn’t take hanging around FLL airport until our 5:30pm flight. We got a room in the complex across the street and a long walk to the beach area. It was decently clean and had a few expensive dining options for lunch. We were allowed two beach chairs and use of the pool and other facilities. It was nice to be able to relax and shower before heading to the airport. I had read that FLL was not allowing anyone past security until three hours before their flight departure so did not want to get stuck there with the severely limited venues before security. It would be nice for MSC to offer some excursions ending later at this airport. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Clean ship. Service in dining room super slow. Food adequate, not great. Took 2 hours for breakfast one morning. Luckily it was a sea day. Be careful in the islands. Some people on our ship had an incident in Antigua. Google ... Read More
Clean ship. Service in dining room super slow. Food adequate, not great. Took 2 hours for breakfast one morning. Luckily it was a sea day. Be careful in the islands. Some people on our ship had an incident in Antigua. Google it. Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Beach at Tortola was nice. Favorite port is St. Maartens. Nice beach. Room was bigger than expected. Good service with our cabin steward Dale. Beach towels in rooms need to be upgraded. Did not like the buffet on Deck 14. Wanted more variety. Same thing every day. Regret not trying the gelato. The Italian coffee on Deck 7 is excellent, along with the pastries. Pizza is superb as well. Super hot and fresh. Do not miss these items. Entertainment was spectacular. Best of any cruise ship. Well choreographed. Dancers, singers acrobats gave it their all. Amazing. Many discrepancies of amounts charged on the "drinks on us" package. Please check your bill when you get it. Overall had a nice time. I believe MSC is working on their service. Americans don't take as long as Europeans dining. That may be the issue. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
This was our first time sailing on MSC. Overall we were very satisfied with the cruise. The staff were all very friendly even when dealing with some not so friendly customers. We really liked the food, bars and "Drinks on us" ... Read More
This was our first time sailing on MSC. Overall we were very satisfied with the cruise. The staff were all very friendly even when dealing with some not so friendly customers. We really liked the food, bars and "Drinks on us" package was fine for us. The ship is beautiful. We did miss the outside areas since you cannot walk around the whole outside without coming in. Improvement in the cleanliness of the mens washroom. The ladies was fine and clean. Good value for our money. We liked the food and and the choices offered. Always had something we enjoyed. We are not big on entertainment, however, we enjoyed the shows we attended. Entertainment in the bars were exceptional. Getting on and off the ship was really easy. We walked off with our luggage. Enjoyed the ports but some islands are struggling to rebuild from the damage of hurricanes. I read some negative reviews, but overall we enjoyed the ship and the cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was a family cruise with 22 people. I was very sceptical after all threw bad reviews. EMBARKATION: was very quick. Room was beautiful but could have been cleaner. I'm a clean freak and parts of the corner if the floor ... Read More
This was a family cruise with 22 people. I was very sceptical after all threw bad reviews. EMBARKATION: was very quick. Room was beautiful but could have been cleaner. I'm a clean freak and parts of the corner if the floor weren't very well cleaned. The main parts were cleaned daily. I like the bathroom better then Carnival and Princess due to the shower having glass doors that fold in when not in use. FOOD: Main dining room was really quite good. Did have 2 dishes that I sent back which is highly unusual for me to ever do. Buffet was not my favorite. Too many pushy people and food was not my favorite. There was a lot more variety then I was expecting though. Homemade cookies were great! Pizza was really good as well. Sports Bar was great. Food great and atmosphere great. Chicken wings great! CASINO BAR: Cannot say enough about Mark in the Casino Bar. He makes the most perfect drinks ever and is the nicest guy!!! STAFF: Very understaffed or just not enough staff in the right place at the right time. SHOP STAFF: Not very friendly and honestly sometimes rude. ENTERTAINMENT: Honestly the best entertainment of any cruiseline I've been on. Nightly shows ate incredible and most of the bars were open and had good entertainment nightly. OTHER CRUISERS: This is an Italian cruise ship so there are a lot of Europeans. I was very surprised how many of the "richer" Europeans agreed as if they were entitled and would push in front of you. Very rude people but not all of them. Just be aware and don't let it ruin your vacation. WOULD I DO MSC AGAIN: It would have to be a really good itinerary and great price otherwise I will stick with Carnival and Princess. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We decided to try an MSC cruise because of the itinerary and the price. We read more negative, than positive, reviews and were a little hesitant, but booked the Divina and we are very glad that we did! It was a great cruise! We ... Read More
We decided to try an MSC cruise because of the itinerary and the price. We read more negative, than positive, reviews and were a little hesitant, but booked the Divina and we are very glad that we did! It was a great cruise! We disembarked RC Allure of the Seas on January 20th and went to Terminal G to board the MSC Divina. We had to take a taxi from Terminal A to G as it would be impossible to walk as it was rainy and the area was under construction. The embarkation process started at 11:00 AM and we were at the buffet, having lunch, at 12:00. Our room was ready at 1:30 and we had our luggage by 2:00 pm. The muster drill was at 4:30, even though, departure time wasn't until 7:00 PM. Our meeting point was at the Piazza del Doge and it was chaotic. You couldn't hear because of the noise and I would have to say that it really was a waste of time. I'm so glad there wasn't a disaster at sea because the muster drill was a mess! Room: 8150 Fantastica Ocean View - The room was of good size and it seemed wider than the room we had on the Allure. The bed was comfortable. I liked that there were a lot of drawers and shelves for storage. It is definitely in need of a refresh - carpet was old and stained. It was kept clean by our steward, Ronald, who did a fantastic job of taking care of us and our room. This room was located right at the hallway from the elevator/stairs and it was in a great location to the public areas on decks 7 & 6. We took the stairs most of the time. It was fairly quiet considering the location by the elevator/stairs. Entertainment: We thought that the shows were great. The singers and dancers were professionals and much better than other lines we have been on. The musicians in the lounges were excellent and there was never a lack of music. Food: We had read so many negative reviews about the food that we didn't know what to expect. For the most part the food in the dining room was hot and good. But there were times when it was inedible. I ordered the pappardelle with sea scallops and it was awful - very salty, the pasta stuck together like paste and there were only 4 tiny bay scallops. I found that the seafood was very disappointing and I expected better pasta dishes from an Italian cruise line. There was a good selection in both the dining room and the buffet. We could always find something to eat that was to our liking. We had pizza at the buffet and it was very good, but the pizza that you pay extra for in the La Cantina di Bacco was excellent! For $10 you can get a medium size pizza with ingredients of your choice and it is made right there. A must try! We didn't eat at other specialty restaurants as we didn't like the choices. This is where Divina is lacking - it needs more restaurants. We did eat at the Sports Bar and the wings and fish and chips (no additional charge) were very good. Staff: We had read that the staff is unfriendly and this was just NOT true. Everyone we came across was friendly and greeted us. If you treat people with respect they will do the same to you. The ship is beautiful - very shiny with black, white, silver and of course, the Swarovski crystal stairs! We thought there was too many mirrors everywhere and what looks like a corridor is actually a mirror causing a little confusion for us. Some of the hallways in the public areas are narrow and can get congested. It took several days to find our way around as there are decks that you can't walk from aft to forward. The walking/jogging path on deck 15 is usually blocked with loungers so you couldn't walk/jog through. The ship didn't feel crowded because most of the passengers were at the pool decks during Sea Days. Pools: We didn't use the pools because you couldn't find a lounger after 9:00 AM as they were all saved with orange towels. MSC doesn't enforce a "no saving loungers" policy. Drink Package: We upgraded from Drinks On Us to the old All-inclusive Classic Package before the cut off in November. We had no problems with this - our card was coded with 534 and we got everything that was included - even gelato. And, the gelato is delicious! We are Classico Chianti drinkers and were glad that one of those was included in our package. All in all, we really enjoyed this cruise! I think Americans were the minority, but we didn't mind as we enjoyed the diversity and we met some very interesting people from all over the world. We didn't have a problem with language as we all spoke the some language - "Cruising MSC." I think that MSC is stepping up their game to attract the U.S. passengers. From the reviews we read it appears that the staff are now friendlier and dinners aren't as long as they are in Europe. In fact, we seemed rushed in the MDR. Dinners only took about 1-1/2 hours for a table of 6. The entertainment, activities, staff and rooms are great - MSC just needs to improve on the food. We will definitely cruise MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
Booked this cruise for a winter get away and we REALLY picked a good time to be away as the Midwest was Frigid. We sailed with 2 other couples. Embarkation was very smooth and we were on the ship after a very short wait. The Divina is a ... Read More
Booked this cruise for a winter get away and we REALLY picked a good time to be away as the Midwest was Frigid. We sailed with 2 other couples. Embarkation was very smooth and we were on the ship after a very short wait. The Divina is a very beautiful and well maintained ship. We went to the Sports Bar shortly afternoon to find out it would not be opening as advertised so went to buffet on 14. The buffet sported a very good selection of different foods and there was some variety change throughout the entire cruise. The Black Crab dining room was a little different as many of the dishes were not up to par and only a FAIR selection overall. Difficulty getting ice to table on a few nights and also several wines were unavailable even when suppose to be on the package. Mario, the restaurant manager was very friendly. We had an Aft Balcony on 13. The room was very nice and well cared for. The balcony was only about 2 ft deep, so barely a balcony. The TV had only a few channels that weren't MSC related or news. Bathrooms were fair size and the body wash was poor quality. Theater shows were pretty good and several happenings each night. The staff at POSIEDEN Pool bar was great and Garth from Arkansas was FANTASTIC !! Don`t be scared to try this line and their ships. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
First the good. This is the second time we have been on MSC Divina. She is a large vessel that is absolutely beautiful in design and appointments. She also seems to be extremely well maintained and is kept super clean and well painted. ... Read More
First the good. This is the second time we have been on MSC Divina. She is a large vessel that is absolutely beautiful in design and appointments. She also seems to be extremely well maintained and is kept super clean and well painted. The carpets are clean, the glass and light fixtures are clean (something I notice) and the ship is well lit. Embarkation for us was a big improvement this year for one BIG reason. We are "Black" card level repeat cruisers so we get priority embarkation. MSC finally realized that it does no good to offer priority check in only to then dump everyone in a big room while waiting to board. So now if you get priority check in you also get priority boarding as well. Are you listening other cruise lines? !! The ship operation went very smoothly and the weather while windy for the first few days was mostly sunny. Port arrivals and departures were right on time. We did have to miss the port in Grand Cayman but the captain made every possible attempt to make it happen including parking the ship in the harbor while further assessing the forecast. A storm over the island made it just too rough for safe tender service so we had an extra day at sea and an earlier arrival in Cozumel. The entertainment on board was better than average with more american style shows and a bit less Italian opera than a year ago. The passengers seem to still be about 70% European. I want to mention the superb saxophone player who entertained by the rear garden pool bar in the afternoons and evenings. A very talented musician. Debarkation went fairly smoothly except they send almost everyone to a theater in the front of the ship which then makes for a long slow line to the one exit ramp they use. It would really help if they used the second ramp that seems to be available in Miami. Now for the shortcomings. First the food in the main ding room while slightly improved from last year was still disappointing on several evenings. The quality of the meat was very poor in the MDR multiple nights. It was cooked correctly to order but was just a poor quality cut. The exception was the prime rib which I thought was tender and perfectly seasoned. Chicken was generally better but the Chicken Cordon Blu was also very poor. We had very excellent service from our waiter and his assistant throughout the cruise. We went to the Eataly premium restaurant one night and had a very good meal. My son had the filet and said it was the very best he ever had. Hmmmm. A note: the phone reservation people were NOT manning the reservation phone during posted hours. Called numerous times with no answer and finally had to go to the Eataly when it opened to get a reservation. The buffet still needs some serious reworking! The layout of the food is just plain silly and a waste of the large space available. The most desirable items are all in the forward area of the buffet and the aft section seems to be just an afterthought. Pizza (very good) and burger type food is all in the forward area but no burgers are taken to the back area. Two salad bars in the forward area but none in the back. Only a bowl of salad in back with no dressings. At breakfast there are no trays of scrambled or sunny side up eggs anywhere but the forward area. There are custom omelet makers at all four areas this year and kudos they take your order and giver you a number so you don't wait in a 10 minute line. I got conflicting information each day about whether they could make custom scrambled eggs. Trays of sausage, bacon, fruit and bread in all areas but pre-made eggs only in forward section. Of course this leads to huge and unnecessary crowding at the forward end. OK, the one really BIG complaint that needs to be aired to the public is the "tipping". I don't know what the current state of affairs is on other lines but on MSC the "tipping" policy is no longer what people think. It came to light to some passengers that the daily "service charge" that is added to each persons on board account is no longer being distributed to the service crew as tips! This also is true for the 15% "service charge" that is being collected on each drink at the bars. Instead, the service crew (bartenders, cabin stewards, waiters and such) are being paid a regular salary just like the captain and hotel managers. As passengers we have always been led to believe that these "service charges" were necessary to make sure the service people were compensated as they are in restaurants and bars on land. If they are now going to be salaried employees then that money should be incorporated into the regular cruise fare and the "service charge" nonsense dropped.. MSC (or any other line that is now doing this) should stop the somewhat dishonest game they are playing with the fares. Having said that, I believe MSC is trying hard to build their brand and slowly learning what it takes to attract the american market to their ships. I look forward to seeing the new private island in Bimini later this year and how they will compete with the other big players in the future. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
Based on the 21 day itinerary you might have already guessed we now consider ourselves MSC regulars, we have had four previous cruises on the Seaside and Divina. This review will cover the first 11 day Southern Caribbean leg of our 21 day ... Read More
Based on the 21 day itinerary you might have already guessed we now consider ourselves MSC regulars, we have had four previous cruises on the Seaside and Divina. This review will cover the first 11 day Southern Caribbean leg of our 21 day back to back cruises. We have been cruising since 1991 and primarily sailed NCL before switching to MSC in 2017. The kids are out of college and one is now married so we’re now sailing as a mid-fifties couple that enjoys spending quiet time together as well as meeting new friends on the ship. Divina was the first MSC ship we sailed on and in that first review I said it was not a ship I would sail again unless the itinerary was great. Well, these itineraries brought me back. This sailing was originally scheduled as a Panama Canal visit but was later changed to the ABC islands, I actually preferred this itinerary and booked when I found a good deal on an aft facing Fantastica balcony that someone gave up when MSC dropped the canal visit. We also upgraded from Drinks On Us to the Deluxe beverage plan. While I was happy about the itinerary and cabin I had major concerns about spending this amount of time on what I consider a fairly boring ship, and since we rarely visit the buffet how monotonous it may become eating in the same dining room every day. Luckily while on Seaside in September I learned Arthur from the Yacht Club restaurant was going to be a head waiter in the MDR while we were on board. I was also hopeful that Ziggy would be the hotel director, unfortunately he went on vacation pretty much the exact dates we were on board. So with a DVD player and a stack of movies we decided to see what it would be like to remain on Divina for this length of time. We flew into Fort Lauderdale the day before and took a $40 Uber down to L Hotel in Miami Beach. An oceanfront hotel really isn’t mandatory for us when we’re going to be in an oceanfront room on the cruise. L Hotel was clean and in a good location, an easy walk to the ocean boardwalk, a grocery and dining. The room was large and a little Spartan, I found it strange there was no caddy for holding our suitcases which ended up on the floor. We took an Uber down to South Pointe Park Pier and watched the Saturday ships sail out as our Divina departed on Sunday. There were eight large ships in Port of Miami the next morning so I was a bit concerned about traffic at the port for embarkation. Complicating things was the government shutdown said to be affecting disembarkation times due to Customs staffing issues. We left the hotel around 9:45am and arrived at the port a few minutes after 10am. Divina was at terminal G rather than her normal terminal F, luckily I’m familiar with that terminal also. They had already opened the security lines and we waited in line for about 15 minutes before getting past the scanners. Once in the check in hall we found the priority line for Voyagers Black status and Aurea passengers, no line at all. Regular check in had about 250 people in line and probably took about 20 minutes. The check in agent we got insisted we get a regular boarding number and I really didn’t feel like arguing so I took the number two boarding card from her. I then kept watch for the priority boarding personnel and asked, she looked at our Black cards and took us with her to begin boarding around 11:30am. We slipped by our cabin and saw our steward who was fine with us dropping off our carryon bags. Since no dining rooms are open on embarkation day we headed straight to the buffet for a quick meal before it became too crowded. We had time to kill since we were already familiar with Divina so we decided to check out our assigned dining table. We had requested and received late dining and were assigned a roomy table for six in Arthur’s section. It turns out MSC seems to be grouping tables by Cruise Critic membership as all people at our table were signed up for the Meet & Mingle. By then it was after 2pm and cabins were open so we headed back to see our luggage had arrived so we unpacked and checked out the number one highlight of this sailing. I’ve never sailed in an aft facing cabin so had done a bit of research before we left. The best idea I saw was placing hammocks on the large balcony. Our cabin was 11303, inside it was a typical roomy 190sqft balcony cabin but the actual balcony is about three times as deep as a standard balcony. It had one lounger one chair and one table, plus a lot of extra space. Aft facing cabins on deck 10 are a little deeper, but I feel they are so long they obstruct the view from inside the cabin – kind of like looking down a long corridor to see the ocean. There were plenty of structural railings to hang the hammocks, a YouTube search yields some great videos. I’ve sailed in many suites and this setup made this sailing almost as good a retreat as the Haven or Yacht Club. The included minibar with the Deluxe beverage package also helped. The cabins are showing age, the décor is a bit dated and the TV’s are small. The carpet and furniture are a little worn but not worn out, our cabin steward, Larry, kept it very clean and was always smiling and asking what he could do for us. We packed clothing for 7-8 days and had two laundry packages over the total 21 days, as usual we over packed but still had enough storage by using the suitcases under the bed as drawers for less used items. The bathroom is typical for this class of stateroom, but a bit more functional than on Seaside. I love the inward folding shower doors, they make the bathroom feel much larger. As I mentioned earlier one of my big concerns for these sailings was becoming bored as my first time on Divina I felt there weren’t a lot of activities nor does it have any of the wow features that are found on the newer ships. Add to that we’ve seen many of MSC’s shows and unfortunately have noticed there really isn’t much variation, even between Seaside. We tried, but ended up going to only two of the theater shows the entire 21 days. I had a feeling after our last Seaside sailing that this would be the case. What I found though was that I actually liked having the extra time where one large group was in the theater and the other was dining where I felt like we had the ship to ourselves. We usually went to La Luna piano bar for drinks, as they had a more eclectic drink selection. The only part I found strange was while La Luna and Golden Jazz bar would open around 5:30-6pm the evening performers would not start until 7:30 or often later. For those of us with 8:30 dining it would be nice if they began a little earlier as we like to take our time with a leisurely meal and often didn’t leave the MDR until 11pm. That left us barely catching the last bit of the lounge’s performers before they closed. There were usually theme parties later into the night, but we mostly just walked by and weren’t enticing enough for us to stay. The late night disco was always desolate, perhaps it was the ship’s demographic. The Black and White lounge evenings alternated between music genres and typical cruise games like Not So Newlywed, Quest and crew/passenger paired dancing competitions. Those events were usually well under way by the time we finished dinner. During the day we often participated in trivia or name that tune events held two to three times a day. While enjoyable for the first sailing we didn’t participate much on the second sailing as they often used the same questions. On sea days the pool deck became crowded, we had 3800 passengers and chair hogging was rampant. It even extended to the outside tables around the pool deck. People reserved a lounger in the sun and a lounger or table in the shade and moved back and forth. The ship has one mediocre water slide, an aft adult only pool, a main pool and a forward semi enclosed pool with retractable solarium roof that attracted the families with small children. Hot tubs usually had a couple of spaces open, the ones on deck 16 aft were less crowded. A couple times a day entertainment staff would host typical poolside games at the main pool stage area, but we really didn’t watch any of these. We’re card players and more often would meet up with others at the wine bar/Eataly pizza area as it had the best tables for card playing. For good old relaxing the best place was out on our balcony in our hammocks with a drink. As I mentioned earlier we sailed Divina in 2017, also in a Fantastica cabin. On this class ship I don’t feel YC, or even Aurea, is as good a value as on other MSC class ships. So I was aware of what the MDR experience was going to be and I was worried about eating there for 21 nights. We would get one specialty dining meal on each leg, but MSC had just made significant changes to the two remaining specialty restaurants. Eataly had the menu changed from more of a steakhouse to what they called a “marketplace”. And Galaxy was changed to a sushi restaurant. My original plan was to purchase some extra specialty meals, but after learning of these menu changes and then that Arthur would be in the MDR I decided to wait until a few days into the sailing. We were assigned the upper level of the Black Crab restaurant, Jose was our waiter Cesar was assistant and Arthur was our head waiter. The first night only one other couple came to dinner and we learned we were both on Cruise Critic. A second couple joined us on the second night, also on CC, and we invited a solo traveler to our table after the Meet & Mingle held the second day. Food is so subjective I usually barely touch on it in a review, but on this sailing dining was a big part of our enjoyment of the cruise. I am far from a picky eater but do know good cruise line food. We often sail MSC Yacht Club and Haven on NCL, and have been to most all the US sailings MSC and NCL specialty restaurants. While the quality can be hit or miss and the portions are somewhat small I was usually able to find combinations that were satisfying, often ordering multiple starters and/or main courses. We also asked for extra vegetables as MSC often seems a little lacking in this area. Once the entire table started ordering in this fashion it did try our server’s skills in working out a serving order where we would all finish near the same time. Someone might order three starters another might get one starter and two mains, I never ordered dessert but liked espresso after the meal. Sure there were gaps when only half the people at the table had food and it made the overall service take significantly longer, but with good company and good wine, thanks again to the Deluxe package and Arthur, it is my preferred dining experience. I sailed NCL for years and a big reason was their Freestyle dining where you could always find a table for two, one of my biggest concerns when moving to MSC was assigned dining as I can’t always afford Yacht Club or Aurea. I do remember assigned tables back in the 1990’s but this with MSC is different, perhaps due to being more experienced, or perhaps due to being more vocal about my desires. I’ve found MSC staff quite willing to do anything within their control to try to make your experience what you want. I told the servers we weren’t interested in a quick meal and had no problem if special requests took a little more time and they accommodated. At one point this did cause some concern with a couple at our table as our meal service often ran 2 ½ hours, particularly one time when there was a scheduled evening show they wanted to attend. They were offered expedited service at our table and even to move to another table that had requested faster meal service if that was what they desired. At first I had felt a little bad they were unhappy with the length of dinner as I felt my request was affecting their enjoyment, but after they refused that offer I no longer cared. As a spoiler I will add here that we enjoyed our meals so much that we actually gave up our private My Choice dining that comes with Aurea cabins and arranged a table for eight with fellow CC Roll Call members for the second leg of our back to back. We ended up eating one specialty meal at Galaxy, Arthur arranged for us to have his favorite server as he worked with her for some time. The atmosphere is terrific and the view and service was spectacular. But as we frequent a sushi restaurant at home the food was fair to poor. We had the “Dining Experience” as this was our free black card meal and it was okay for getting away from the MDR, if I missed a Yacht Club meal for it I would be disappointed. A very dumbed down sampler menu with a several bland cooked items the couple pieces of raw fish lacked texture and were tasteless. However after the disappointing meal we decided to order a couple special a la carte items and they were much better. I’m going to include here our one specialty meal for the second leg at Eataly Marketplace. After looking at the menu we decided not to waste a dinner here, instead we chose to go for lunch on a sea day. While dumbed down from the previous Eataly Steakhouse menu it was a good meal and provided a needed break from the MDR and buffet lunch menus which by late into our 21 days was getting a little monotonous. I’ll include a brief note about breakfast and lunch. We tried the MDR on sea days and buffet on port days and this became the only area I found the food lacking. Perhaps lacking is an inaccurate term, maybe monotonous is better. I don’t usually eat three full meals a day, usually breakfast at home for me is very small. While Divina had a wide selection of offerings for many cultures but I had a hard time finding something different over time. The omelet station was good for a few times a week, but my usual was some bacon some potatoes and some fruit. Not bad, but not memorable. Lunch was similar with the exception of the embarkation lunch for Aurea passengers who get to eat in the lower Black Crab MDR (all others except YC eat in the buffet). That was the best lunch of the cruise with special offerings only that day. Okay, this is running a little long and I still want to cover the second leg so I can detail the forward Aurea Suite with large balcony and Eastern Caribbean ports in part two of this review. I’ll briefly describe our back to back experience. We were changing cabins from the very back to the very front of the ship. We packed up all our belongings into suitcases and left them in the cabin, only taking valuables with us to the B2B meet up in the Black & White lounge. We went to guest services the last night and received our new sail cards. Partially because someone was missing and partially because Customs was slightly slow we were delayed in the lounge about an hour longer than expected. I’m not sure why but it was handled differently than our previous MSC B2B. Rather than going through customs individually at multiple stations like a regular disembarkation we all just lined up and walked with our passports open past one officer who just nodded as we passed. We then lined up and waited a few minutes before being allowed to re board. Once out of the lounge the entire process took about 30 minutes. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise because of the 11 day duration and the destinations. The ship itself is amazing and huge - we are first timers so we were awed by the dimensions. Getting in is well organised but long and a bit difficult at times. The ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the 11 day duration and the destinations. The ship itself is amazing and huge - we are first timers so we were awed by the dimensions. Getting in is well organised but long and a bit difficult at times. The room was very quaint and nice, small for a family of four but we knew that when we reserved. Everything was quite handy in the room and we were happy being together. The guests on board vary, majority from Italy, US, Eastern Europe Czech and Hungary, Brazil - all over the place, it's truly international. The other positives were the food in the buffet which was excellent - perhaps the best buffets I have come across in a long time. Everything was super fresh, pizza was delicious, so were the pastas. Felt no need to go to Eataly with the standard of food so high. Salads and fruits were plenty and varied. Got slightly bored after a week and decided to go for the Far Eastern sushi place which was also nice, although sushi quality was just ok. The biggest letdown in food was the main restaurant where we should have dined every night from 6PM. Went once, super busy, waiters not on top of their game at all, half hour for a glass of wine, not friendly waiters at all, very confused and rushed service. The quality of the food was also poor compared to the buffet. Prawn cocktail, lobster bisque, vegetable soup, and others were a joke at best. I wasn't aware of how big the pools were on board, but they should be at least 50% larger if possible to accomodate the people. Not sure if this is technically possible, but I would go for bigger pools and less hot tubs. Although the hot tubs were almost always full with 10 people minimum. Internet usage is a ripoff, I must have spent 500 dollars for using the net with my family - constantly had to check how many MB remain. Also, the daily per person service charge that I only found out about on board is a huge ripoff. Much better to give tip to staff that actually do their job well. Like our cleaners - wonderful guys, always smiling and doing up our room 5 times a day and hoovering even at 9 PM. Kids programs - we couldn't get our 7, 10 year olds to go to programs, because they couldn't attend the 11+ group where the games were more to their liking. I understand this of course, but age 4-11 is too wide unfortunately and involves drawing and lego which they didn't want to take part in. Tips: - reserve beds with towels early. You shouldn't do that on paper, but this is not enforced by staff at all and you are left without a sunbed after 9 AM. - go to buffet rather than fixed dinner. What is the point of getting substandard food with rushed impersonal service and also have to dress up in dinner jackets and stuff each night? - go see the plays, the entertainment is really quality with some great voices - reserve your own excursions on shore. they are cheaper and last much longer than the boats organised trips. The duration of these are 4 hours max and you spend at least 8 on shore, so why not hire a car, do your own thing? - check credit card for all extra charges added on - do not get a drinks package unless you want to drink more than 2 cocktails and 3 beers a day. especially given the fact that you will be paying for drinks all day when you get off on the islands. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and price. This was our 6th cruise and the first time on MSC line. Getting onto the ship took about 45 min and we were allowed to go to our cabin right away. We were in 12253 which is a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and price. This was our 6th cruise and the first time on MSC line. Getting onto the ship took about 45 min and we were allowed to go to our cabin right away. We were in 12253 which is a balcony/aft/port. Our steward Rubean greeted us right away and asked if we had any special requests. The cabin was clean with a nice size balcony and was serviced twice daily. The service was very good in the Black Crab for dinner and our servers Joebert and Robin were always attentive and efficient. While the food was good, it was not on par with other lines we've sailed on. Dinner was served promptly and never took longer than an hour from start to finish and food was always served hot. Trying to find a seat in the buffet for lunch on sea days was a challenge and dining times in the Black Crab (for lunch) were very limited (12-1:30) and only offered on sea days. The buffet had great fresh salad and fruits. The chilled soups served daily on the fruit bar were really good especially the Watermelon/Coconut. For the most part the Buffet offered the same food daily with minor changes. The servers at the buffet work very hard and clear tables asap. The entertainment in the Theater was really good especially the Tribute to Queen show. To get to the theater, you had to walk through the smokey Casino or go up and around by walking through the narrow cabin hallways. Finding a lounge chair on sea days was next to impossible as they were all"saved" with orange towels tied to them. Apparently everyone goes up early in the AM and grabs a chair for the day. If you are not an early riser, you are out of luck. Also, the bars by the pool get very busy. We read some negative reviews about the Europeans being rude and pushy but we did not find that to be the case. We met some couples from all over Europe that were quite friendly. The "Drinks on us" package was really a bonus. There was a limited selection but we researched and printed out what was included in advance. All you pay for is the 15% gratuity. Staff was good about letting you know what was or wasn't included as well. The running track is very hard to find and not much to speak of but if you go down to deck 7, you can walk either side of the ship with very little traffic. Public areas on the ship were kept clean and hand sanitizer was offered at both the Buffet and main Dining room. We chose "express" disembarkation and that was a total mess! We got down at 7:00 am and the line was all way down to the casino and coming back up the other side. There was no clear (roped off) defined line and people were cutting in front and not bothering to go down into the Casino and up and around. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
This was a casino certificate from Mohegan Sun Casino in CT. We decided to upgrade to the Yacht Club after reading other reviews of MSC. I’ll try to break it down into areas. Due to an ice storm, we had to change our flight from ... Read More
This was a casino certificate from Mohegan Sun Casino in CT. We decided to upgrade to the Yacht Club after reading other reviews of MSC. I’ll try to break it down into areas. Due to an ice storm, we had to change our flight from Sunday, day of embarkation to Saturday. We had been on a layover in Baltimore-Washington for about 7 hours and had to stay in a pretty awful (last min. booked) hotel with no elevator near Miami Airport. We were afraid we were going to arrive late once our hotel transfer finally showed up but we arrived in good time. After drop off, we went right to the Yacht Club tent and were ushered right in to the boat. They tagged our luggage and carry on bags (we didn’t have to carry anything). Once inside the shore butler team took care of is. The process was so fast, we even cut the line a few times with the butler team and were provided champagne and treats while waiting for our key cards to be made up. Once on the boat, we were taken right up to the Yacht Club Too Sail Lounge. It was nice with drinks, snacks and canapés. Once our room was ready (about 10 minutes later) we were shown our room by our private butler, Marcella (awesome!!) who showed us the room, converge and elevators up to the One Pool/Bar. In the room she showed us the the mini bar (complimentary), walk in closet, bath and offered us a pillow menu if we wanted different pillows to sleep on or certain drinks and snacks in the minibar. The bed was foam, which we have at home so we are used to that. Pillows and sheets were good quality Egyptian cotton, very comfy. The TV had ports to connect a video game or computer to. The TV selection was a little dull, but it’s vacation and we didn’t watch more than a few movies at night. The balcony was small, but adequate with room for two chairs and a small table. There was a fruit bowl (filled every day with our faves) and champagne. There was both sparkling Pellegrino and Still mineral waters (complimentary) throughout the whole trip. There was a couch in the room and a table as well as a stool and desk The bathroom was marble. The sinks were not very large, but there was storage under the vanity and in the cabinet in the room. The tub was large enough and the shower was good pressure. I love to soak so it was nice for me. We ate all of our dinners in the Yacht Club Le Muse restaurant which was at the back of the ship (Club was at the front), which was a little strange. The menu was somewhat limiting (a lot of European dishes) and new to get used to, although different each day. My hubby wanted a steak and potatoes each night and they accommodated him. Most of the rest of the guests dining were European, Germans and Italians and not many children on board. The portions were fine as far as I was concerned, eve though I had read complaints of small portions. The deserts were perfectly sized to give a taste. We sometimes couldn’t make up our minds so they brought us a few to try. On sea days we ordered pizza from Eatly and it was brought to our room at no extra charge (we did cash tip tho) and it was excellent, very Italian! The few times we went to the buffet it was total chaos, much like buffets on other lines, but the set up of different stations makes one have to cross all over to get all the different choices. I don’t know if it was just general confusion or lack of signs, but it was chaos and the food, other than the salad and fruit was below average. The choices at the Top Sail and the One Bar were better. I actually lost weight from all the fruit and veggies combined with walking about 6 miles a day when in port. The One Bar had breakfast daily an omelet station and waffles could be ordered. It was often windy up there in front of the ship. The breakfast buffet was limited to continental pastry, cereal, home fries, bacon and sausage which were not very hot. They also had fruit and yogurts. It was still better than going to the chaotic buffet. Yacht Club is the way to go! The shops were nice. Boutiques (carried better brands I.e. Tommy Hill. Guess?, etc. ) sizes ran to about 14 in women’s. There was also jewelry, perfume, makeup, logo items, candy, toys, photo shop, liquor and cigarettes. Throughout the cruise there were tables set up in the area of the coffee, gelato and pastry shop that sold watches and accessories. The casino was small but there were some table games and bingo available (costing extra) We did not go to any of the shows (we are not really show or disco people) we did enjoy the hot tubs in the One Pool and La Sirene (indoor pool with retractable roof) pool areas. We don’t have any kids so we did not go to the kids or teen areas. We also didn’t go on the water slide because it was closed one time and had a long line another time. The ship on general was beautiful! A lot of marble, statues, and mirrors. It is Italian after all. The main staircases were clear glass with various size Swarovski crystals that shined like diamonds. Just beautiful. The ports were Bonaire, Curaçao, Aruba, Ocho Rios, Jamaica, Grand Cayman and Cozumel MX. Bonaire: not too much to do unless you like to snorkel and scuba dive. We went for a 6 mile walk. Wilmastead, Curaçao. We went shopping and over the “floating bridge” into town to walk around and shop some more. We bought some Dutch tiles and linens. We had lunch and tried our luck at the casino near the docks. It was very windy that day, but warm and beautiful. Oranjestad, Aruba. We had been here before and took a tour of the island and the church in the past so we went to Dunkin Donuts and a couple casinos. We had planned to take one of the busses to the beach but there was a rainstorm, so we went to some of the upscale shops in the port area and had lunch. Ocho Rios, Jamaica. We had planned to take an excursion to walk up Dunn’s River Falls, but decided against it and instead decided to walk into town and hit the beach then go to lunch at Margaritaville. The initial walk through the taxi area was difficult because the drivers are quite pushy. Since it was Sunday, most of the shops were not opened, except the jewelry store and the others that seem to be on every island. Our walk into town was a little scary. Hubby and I are not people who scare easy, we are pretty tough, but the men began to follow us to try to get money from us and to get us to buy drugs. Not our thing. A few commented on my blond hair. We are in our 40’s but don’t look it so I think they thought we would be interested in buying some pot. Most of the women we saw were dressed for church and it was interesting to see security people at the church. We ended up going back to the ship before Margaritaville opened up. We spent the day up at One Pool/Bar. Grand Cayman. No pier so tenders would have to be taken. It was too windy and choppy so the captain canceled the port call and we had a sea day. One thing about the ship some complained about was the announcements being made in 5 languages. It is a very European cruiseline and we encountered people who spoke many languages. I thought it was fascinating to speak to people from all over the world, who all seemed to be able to speak English. Cozumel, MX. We just went for a long walk looked at souvenirs, took pictures and had lunch at the outside mall at the pier. It was a nice area. Funny seeing armed men in military vehicles about every 10 min. driving up and down the road. The sellers were a little pushy and the things were pretty much the same. We bought some rum cakes and brought them home We were so busy we didn’t get to the gym or thermal spa.’The thermal spa is included with Yacht Club which has steam rooms, hot tubs and relaxation rooms. All in all the staff worked very hard to please us. They always had a smile on their face and a friendly hello. I would love to go on MSC again in the Yacht Club. It was totally worth it. Read Less
MSC Divina Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
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 3.8
Rates 5.0 3.7

Find a MSC Divina Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise