MSC Lirica - Pacific Coastal: MSC Lirica Cruise Review by Joanne Irwin

MSC Lirica 2
Joanne Irwin

Overall Member Rating

MSC Lirica - Pacific Coastal

Sail Date: January 2004
Destination: Panama Canal & Central America
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
The new Lirica is a beautiful vessel. Technologically advanced, it provided a smooth, quiet cruise even in some choppy waters. The room (windowed outside cabin) was very nice and clean. More than sufficient storage space. Our ports of call were wonderful - interesting, historical with beautiful scenery.(Panama Canal, Central America and Cartagena, Colombia.) However, MSC Cruise Line will have to improve its cuisine to compete with mainly American cruise lines. This is my 7th cruise. Previously, I've sailed with NCL, Princess, Premier and Carnival. The food on the Lirica was absolutely horrendous. And I do not avail myself of cruise vacations for food. I eat to live, not live to eat. The quality and presentation of food were awful and inferior. Bacon and sausage were inedible. Bacon consisted of 90% fat and barely cooked. Eggs usually served cold. Main meals deficient in choices, quality and presentation. Meats (i.e. beef) tough and grizzly. Desserts were practically nonexistent. Each More night we had a choice of either ice cream or cake. The latter a frozen piece of tasteless flour, cream and fluff. On night one we were handed a wine list. We made choices, then told they were out of wine. Finally, our number 4 choice was in stock. Our last stop was to be at Key West. Everyone had to report to Immigration at 6:45 a.m. for passport clearance. That was a fiasco. After waiting 2 hours for immigration to board, the only scrutiny was a look at passport and look to see if each face matched passport. No one's name was checked off, etc. How would anyone know if an individual was cleared? Then we never made it to Key West because ship anchored off pier and tenders were unable to navigate the choppy waters safely. There were other cruise ships docked at the pier. People who had never been to Key West were very disappointed. Disembarking for excursions was poor, disorganized and unsafe. MSC needs to formulate a better system so cruisers will not be made to stand on stairwells for an hour while waiting for disembarkation. Clearly, a safety hazard existed. Additionally, bar staff and servers were poorly trained. They had little experience in making cocktails, evidenced by poor quality and taste of drinks. Again, the ship was lovely. Crew attempted to accommodate passengers. However, on day one it was obvious that staff was stressed. They didn't appear to be a happy lot. They lightened up on day three. MSC has potential. They need to make major changes. We were a party of eight and none of us would ever sail on one of their ships again. Less

Published 11/23/04

Cabin review: 8705

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Joanne Irwin
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