This was my fourth cruise on MSC Divina. It has become a home away from home. I absolutely love its elegant contemporary italian design, with every area meticulously decorated with high-end finishes and art. I find the food to be delicious with many vegetarian and healthy options. The staff and crew especially the maids, pool attendants, waiters and bartenders are upbeat, warm and friendly which makes cruising all the more enjoyable. Andre the cruise director is warm, engaging, and awkwardly funny. On this particular cruise I saw the captain Massa and hotel director Ziggy on many occasions greeting the guests, chatting in depth, even solving problems for them on the spot. They were asking many questions of the guests- wanted to make sure they were happy. Extraordinary!
I did hear some guests complaining and unhappy. Often people expect everything to be perfect or according to their unrealistic expectations. One thing is not perfect and suddenly they focus on this. Some people don't know how to relax and enjoy. I must admit though- MSC can do a better job of setting expectations correctly through better communication and specific information. Americans relax through information. MSC is quite vague at times. For example, they need better diagrams and details of the rooms. I got lucky because a previous guest had posted a video of the stateroom on youtube- otherwise I had no way of knowing if it would truly fit my needs. In all likelihood, we would not have booked this cruise otherwise.
This cruise I brought a friend who has never been on a cruise. She is well-traveled for business but doesn't vacation much, and I wanted to make sure we both would be comfortable and happy.
We booked room 12004 which is a large 2 room suite with Yacht Club privileges. The suite has a full living room with a separate bedroom. Both have a floor-to-ceiling curved wall of glass but no balcony. This room faces the front of the ship. Someone posted a video of this room on youtube, which helped me decide. 2 TV's, walk-in closet, vanity, another closet, 2 safes. The bathroom has a separate tub and shower. I must say, the room was perfect for our needs! Often she wanted to nap before dinner, while I like to unwind, watch a movie and have a glass of wine at that time- we had plenty of room to do both. We each had our own safe and our own closet- peaceful times for two traveling ladies! She used the vanity, I used the bathroom to get ready. We requested the king bed be split into two twin beds, which reminded me of my college dorm room! Except for the mauve suede walls, flat screen TV and wall-to-wall ocean view!
OMG Miami is so awesome. Stay at the ME for a chill upbeat boutique vibe. Poolside yoga Saturday morning, DJ in the afternoon. The pool cabana hotel suites are amazing!!!
My other favorite boutique hotel is the Sense in SOFI (South Beach south of Fifth) It's across the street from the beach (they will loans you beach equipment), has a 24 roof-top pool, 1 block away from the South Beach restaurants so it's quiet at night. Excellent restaurant in the lobby.