I am a 46 year old from Indiana. I traveled with my family which consisted of my wife, my 2 10 year old boys, my 70 year old mother and her 68 year old sister. We have all cruised before on Princess, NCL, Celebrity, Disney, and MSC. This cruise was in March and we had just cruised on the MSC Divina las October. I have no cruise status, but the family does travel alot. Embarkation was in Genoa. We learned last fall on the Divina that you dont need connecting rooms if you get balcony rooms next to each other. When you do this you can open up the divider on the balcony between the two rooms and use that to go back and forth between the rooms. The only downside to this was that one night it was pretty stormy outside and the divider banged made noise until I found a way to secure it.
Embarkation was fst and friendly. My mother has a cane and once the MSC staff saw this they sped us all through the process and we did not have to wait at all. One nice feature about the ship picking up passengers at about every stop is that our room was ready for us as soon as we got onto the shop at noon.
We knew pretty much what to expect with the ship prior to arrival because it is essentially the same as the Divina. I do have to say that the Divina seemed a little nicer than the Splendida. There were a couple more upcharge restaurants on the Divina, although we didnt eat at any of them on either ship. Coming from the USA where there is a mexican restaurant on every corner and a steakhouse on every other corner it was hard for me to justify paying more to eat mexican on the ship. We always get a balcony at the rear of the ship on the floor nearest the buffet. This allows us to grab food and return to our balcony if we cant find a table in the buffet. This was a problem on the Divina, but we never had a problem finding a table at the buffet on the Splendida. This also allows you to be a quick walk to the pool or hot tub without having to walk down a long hallway.
The food at the Main Dining Room was so so. I definitely would not go on MSC for the food, but I definitely would not skip the MSC because of the food. It is no Celbrity, but it wasnt much worse than DIsney. My youngest got steak every night and the rest of us tried pretty much everything. The wait staff was friendly but not speedy. You have to expect long dinners in the Main Dining Room though. We only ate in here 4 nights. The evening buffet was smaller than the lunch buffet which was a real bummer. There were not as many choices for dinner than for lunch. There were always good pizza, hamburgers, and a good pasta. They had calamari everynight. I usually like calamari, but this was the fisshiest tasting, rubbery stuff I have ever had. The big disipoinment was not free lobster on the boat. Overall though I liked the food.
It was in the 60's most days and people were not at the pools. I had the drink package and found that the pool bar was the place to be. Very friendly bar staff and no crowd. The ports were nice except for Marseille. Marseiile was the dirtiest place I have been. I have been to Beijing, Central America, and Chicago and found Marseille to be a huge waste of time. Not worth the bus ride. Palermo was the best, then Malta, then Rome, then Barcelona. I would do this cruise again in a heartbeat.