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After reading all those bad reviews i was pretty worried. It was our first cruise and we went with a 2,5 year old son.We chose this ship, because they claim to by family friendly and they have designated areas for kids to play. After the cruise I have to say that this cruise has a great potential but our vacation did not fulfill our expectations. The problem of the ship is the staff and the management. The ship: I have to say that the ship is beautiful. We had a room with a balcony and it was great. It is smaller but the space is limited so I cannot complain about that. I have to give credit for the mattresses and pillows. I usually have trouble sleeping in a hotel room because the beds and pillows are not comfortable but it is not a case here. Food: Breakfast and lunch in the buffet (the marketplace) was good. The breakfast was everyday the same, for lunch they did some change every day. You have plenty to choose from and it was not cold as many of the complaints said. Dinner in the restaurant was very good, always something interesting to choose from the menu. The problem at dinner was time. We were there with a little boy and it was really difficult to keep him busy till the food came. I always got there at 18.30 to order from the menu for all of us and my husband came with my son at 18.55. Sometimes the waiter kept me waiting for 20 minutes till I could order the food. Then it took a long time for the food to come. I understand that they needed time to cook the main meal, but i don´t understand why we had to wait 20minutes for desserts! I also understand that couples there did not need to rush and could stay there for two hours. But families with kids don´t have that much time and as a family friendly ship they should understand that. Other families with kids had the same problem, their kids falling asleep while waiting for food. But the biggest problem is, if you have any food allergies or intolerance. Recently we have discovered that our son has a milk allergy. So when we got onboard, i went to the reception to find out what can be done. I waited for 15 minutes at the reception in line. Then i told the man at the reception about the allergy and asked if they can arrange that the restaurant knows about it for dinner. For 15 minutes he was doing something on the computer, typing, did not say a word. Then he said "you are all set". I was like okay, thank you. At our first dinner in the restaurant i asked the waiter about the allergies. on the menu they did not write the allergy information. After his confused look i knew that it will be a problem. His boss came, but he did not know about milk allergy anything. he asked about lactose but it is not the same. For breakfast and lunch it was a problem too. Every food has a label and you can read the title in 6 different languages, but you will never find out, if there is milk /gluten/ or anything else. If you cannot risk it, you can have something from the fruit and salad bar, but that´s it. Fortunately I brought some snacks for my son onboard but it is really sad that you have to bring your own food. Kids areas: The ship has good facilities for kids and claims that they are available 9.00 till 23.00. But it is not true. The facilities were opened only during baby time and baby care time. Baby time meant that you can be there with your child, baby care meant that you could leave your child there with staff. But the hours were horrible. Baby time was during the time when we were on land or during the time when the baby was asleep, or during our dinner time. I could not be there with my child during baby care and i did not want to leave my child with a stranger without proper qualifications. I saw that the girls were just standing there and let the kids watch tv. We wanted to play in the sports arena, but they would not borrow us a ball to play with. So we bought a ball the next day on land, but they kicked us from the sports arena because that time was reserved for soccer, but noone showed up for soccer!!! This “family friendly” claim looks good on a paper, but the reality is different. Staff: The biggest problem of the ship is the staff. We have travelled around the world, stayed in 4*/5* resorts, but we have never seen this kind of attitude. During the whole stay, i haven´t seen our waiter smile or make a small talk. People at the excursion desk or kids clubs behaved like you were bothering them. Once I stopped at the excursion desk to ask about excursions at barcelona. First I asked if she could tell me at what time we should be in barcelona. She said "check the screens". I mean, after 3months doing the same route every week, you know these things, and it is part of your job to know these things, but i don´t understand why she could not tell me, or be at least nicer. So we visited barcelona on our own. I ordered a coffee at the bar, waited for it for 20 minutes. If I haven´t already paid for it 5 euros I would have left. The waiter that took my order saw me waiting, but every 5 minutes he just said reminded the other waiter the make that coffee and that was it. The only nice person was the man that cleaned our room. He was always smiling, asked if we needed anything, or joked with our son. Out of these people he had the worst job, it was not part of his job to deal with people, but he was the best.

Dissapointment

MSC Meraviglia Cruise Review by jj11

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
After reading all those bad reviews i was pretty worried. It was our first cruise and we went with a 2,5 year old son.We chose this ship, because they claim to by family friendly and they have designated areas for kids to play. After the cruise I have to say that this cruise has a great potential but our vacation did not fulfill our expectations. The problem of the ship is the staff and the management.

The ship:

I have to say that the ship is beautiful. We had a room with a balcony and it was great. It is smaller but the space is limited so I cannot complain about that. I have to give credit for the mattresses and pillows. I usually have trouble sleeping in a hotel room because the beds and pillows are not comfortable but it is not a case here.

Food:

Breakfast and lunch in the buffet (the marketplace) was good. The breakfast was everyday the same, for lunch they did some change every day. You have plenty to choose from and it was not cold as many of the complaints said. Dinner in the restaurant was very good, always something interesting to choose from the menu. The problem at dinner was time. We were there with a little boy and it was really difficult to keep him busy till the food came. I always got there at 18.30 to order from the menu for all of us and my husband came with my son at 18.55. Sometimes the waiter kept me waiting for 20 minutes till I could order the food. Then it took a long time for the food to come. I understand that they needed time to cook the main meal, but i don´t understand why we had to wait 20minutes for desserts! I also understand that couples there did not need to rush and could stay there for two hours. But families with kids don´t have that much time and as a family friendly ship they should understand that. Other families with kids had the same problem, their kids falling asleep while waiting for food.

But the biggest problem is, if you have any food allergies or intolerance. Recently we have discovered that our son has a milk allergy. So when we got onboard, i went to the reception to find out what can be done. I waited for 15 minutes at the reception in line. Then i told the man at the reception about the allergy and asked if they can arrange that the restaurant knows about it for dinner. For 15 minutes he was doing something on the computer, typing, did not say a word. Then he said "you are all set". I was like okay, thank you. At our first dinner in the restaurant i asked the waiter about the allergies. on the menu they did not write the allergy information. After his confused look i knew that it will be a problem. His boss came, but he did not know about milk allergy anything. he asked about lactose but it is not the same. For breakfast and lunch it was a problem too. Every food has a label and you can read the title in 6 different languages, but you will never find out, if there is milk /gluten/ or anything else. If you cannot risk it, you can have something from the fruit and salad bar, but that´s it. Fortunately I brought some snacks for my son onboard but it is really sad that you have to bring your own food.

Kids areas:

The ship has good facilities for kids and claims that they are available 9.00 till 23.00. But it is not true. The facilities were opened only during baby time and baby care time. Baby time meant that you can be there with your child, baby care meant that you could leave your child there with staff. But the hours were horrible. Baby time was during the time when we were on land or during the time when the baby was asleep, or during our dinner time. I could not be there with my child during baby care and i did not want to leave my child with a stranger without proper qualifications. I saw that the girls were just standing there and let the kids watch tv.

We wanted to play in the sports arena, but they would not borrow us a ball to play with. So we bought a ball the next day on land, but they kicked us from the sports arena because that time was reserved for soccer, but noone showed up for soccer!!!

This “family friendly” claim looks good on a paper, but the reality is different.

Staff:

The biggest problem of the ship is the staff. We have travelled around the world, stayed in 4*/5* resorts, but we have never seen this kind of attitude. During the whole stay, i haven´t seen our waiter smile or make a small talk. People at the excursion desk or kids clubs behaved like you were bothering them. Once I stopped at the excursion desk to ask about excursions at barcelona. First I asked if she could tell me at what time we should be in barcelona. She said "check the screens". I mean, after 3months doing the same route every week, you know these things, and it is part of your job to know these things, but i don´t understand why she could not tell me, or be at least nicer. So we visited barcelona on our own. I ordered a coffee at the bar, waited for it for 20 minutes. If I haven´t already paid for it 5 euros I would have left. The waiter that took my order saw me waiting, but every 5 minutes he just said reminded the other waiter the make that coffee and that was it. The only nice person was the man that cleaned our room. He was always smiling, asked if we needed anything, or joked with our son. Out of these people he had the worst job, it was not part of his job to deal with people, but he was the best.
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