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Just back from an amazing cruise on the beautiful MSC Divina. This was my 6th cruise on MSC so I wasn't put off by the negative reviews and this cruise on the Divina certainly met all of my expectations. I acknowledge people have different tastes, likes and dislikes and for me MSC and NCL provide me with the best cruise experiences with Royal Caribbean following very close behind. P&O and Cunard are not for me, however I can appreciate why some people would like them. So the relevance of this is that some reviews seem to state nonsense as facts rather than opinions. For example, the reviews that state the buffet only offers hot dogs, burgers and pizza! This is completely untrue. Yes, there are these items available (and the pizzas are delicious by the way) but walk through the buffet and you will find fresh salads, pasta, curries, roasts, various vegetables, rice, potatoes, fish etc etc!! The food in the evening was also very good - I was never served a cold dinner - and if there was something on the menu you didn't like they would always bring you something else. The ship is well laid out, spotlessly clean and beautifully decorated. I sailed on the Divina a couple of years ago soon after its launch and I can say the ship still looks amazing and is obviously immaculately maintained. The staff are without exception the friendliest and most helpful you could expect to come across on a cruise ship. How they manage to be so cheerful when confronted with so many miserable and rude passengers is beyond me! We met some great people on the cruise - Australian, American, Irish, Belgian, Swiss, Spanish, French, German and British and we all commented on how grumpy and abusive some of our fellow passengers were. How can they expect any service at all if they are so incredibly rude and obnoxious to the hard-working staff? It seems some passengers (I call them the professional complainers) deliberately create a scene so as to get priority treatment - and indeed we witnessed this in the main dining room. Please MSC - do not pamper to this disgraceful behaviour - better these few idiots never sail with you again than potentially lose the business of more people who are genuinely trying to have a good holiday! Embarkation and Disembarkation was fine - again the same as with other cruise lines. Hundreds of impatient people trying to get on or off, jump queues and getting stressed. Just relax, follow the instructions and you will be fine. One criticism was on arrival in the American Virgin Islands, MSC should have been more upfront with how long the formalities would take and some unfortunate passengers only managed to get off mid-afternoon for a couple of hours on shore. I was lucky - managed to get off at 10am and got a ferry to St John - a beautiful island with empty, white sand beaches! However I did pay more for my cruise experience (Aurea package) so the old adage you get what you pay for seems to apply. Entertainment on board was excellent - the Galaxy disco was not as busy as the last time I sailed on the Divina, however this was an 18 night cruise so there was an older demographic - most people of working age don't get that amount of time off. The party nights on the pool deck worked very well though and people of all ages seemed to enjoy themselves. (Thankfully all the grumpy passengers had exhausted themselves by moaning all day so were probably tucked up in their beds!) Ports of call were also very good - weather was a little unkind in Barcelona, Malaga and Martinique but beautiful for the rest of the cruise. So that's it. An excellent cruise aboard a stunningly beautiful ship. Good food, great entertainment, fantastic cabin and above all wonderful staff. Amazing value for money!

Awesome Grand Voyage Across the Atlantic and Around the Caribbean

MSC Divina Cruise Review by OptimistKeith

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
Just back from an amazing cruise on the beautiful MSC Divina. This was my 6th cruise on MSC so I wasn't put off by the negative reviews and this cruise on the Divina certainly met all of my expectations. I acknowledge people have different tastes, likes and dislikes and for me MSC and NCL provide me with the best cruise experiences with Royal Caribbean following very close behind. P&O and Cunard are not for me, however I can appreciate why some people would like them. So the relevance of this is that some reviews seem to state nonsense as facts rather than opinions. For example, the reviews that state the buffet only offers hot dogs, burgers and pizza! This is completely untrue. Yes, there are these items available (and the pizzas are delicious by the way) but walk through the buffet and you will find fresh salads, pasta, curries, roasts, various vegetables, rice, potatoes, fish etc etc!! The food in the evening was also very good - I was never served a cold dinner - and if there was something on the menu you didn't like they would always bring you something else.

The ship is well laid out, spotlessly clean and beautifully decorated. I sailed on the Divina a couple of years ago soon after its launch and I can say the ship still looks amazing and is obviously immaculately maintained.

The staff are without exception the friendliest and most helpful you could expect to come across on a cruise ship. How they manage to be so cheerful when confronted with so many miserable and rude passengers is beyond me! We met some great people on the cruise - Australian, American, Irish, Belgian, Swiss, Spanish, French, German and British and we all commented on how grumpy and abusive some of our fellow passengers were. How can they expect any service at all if they are so incredibly rude and obnoxious to the hard-working staff? It seems some passengers (I call them the professional complainers) deliberately create a scene so as to get priority treatment - and indeed we witnessed this in the main dining room. Please MSC - do not pamper to this disgraceful behaviour - better these few idiots never sail with you again than potentially lose the business of more people who are genuinely trying to have a good holiday!

Embarkation and Disembarkation was fine - again the same as with other cruise lines. Hundreds of impatient people trying to get on or off, jump queues and getting stressed. Just relax, follow the instructions and you will be fine. One criticism was on arrival in the American Virgin Islands, MSC should have been more upfront with how long the formalities would take and some unfortunate passengers only managed to get off mid-afternoon for a couple of hours on shore. I was lucky - managed to get off at 10am and got a ferry to St John - a beautiful island with empty, white sand beaches! However I did pay more for my cruise experience (Aurea package) so the old adage you get what you pay for seems to apply.

Entertainment on board was excellent - the Galaxy disco was not as busy as the last time I sailed on the Divina, however this was an 18 night cruise so there was an older demographic - most people of working age don't get that amount of time off. The party nights on the pool deck worked very well though and people of all ages seemed to enjoy themselves. (Thankfully all the grumpy passengers had exhausted themselves by moaning all day so were probably tucked up in their beds!)

Ports of call were also very good - weather was a little unkind in Barcelona, Malaga and Martinique but beautiful for the rest of the cruise.

So that's it. An excellent cruise aboard a stunningly beautiful ship. Good food, great entertainment, fantastic cabin and above all wonderful staff. Amazing value for money!
OptimistKeith’s Full Rating Summary
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