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MSC Grandiosa Cruise Review
0.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
39 Reviews

We are cured of any desire to travel on a large cruise ship

MSC Grandiosa Cruise Review by swisstrailblazer

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Nov 2019
  • Destination: the Western Mediterranean
  • Cabin Type: Aurea Balcony Stateroom

The Grandiosa is certainly an impressive ship - the LED roof is amazing - but, but, but..

The tall silver bar stools on Deck 6 are terribly uncomfortable and I kept sliding off. The first time I sat on the normal size silver chair it nearly fell over. The same goes for the chairs in the French buffet - they're terribly uncomfortable.

The 'easy' drinks package is essentially useless. We quickly upgraded to the Premium.

Our meals in the speciality restaurants were disappointing, except for the Japanese. When we ate at the French buffet my husband's roast chicken was raw in the middle and had to be replaced. When we went to Butcher's Cut, my steak was rare bordering on blue instead of medium rare.

We used the buffet for breakfast. We had no trouble getting a table except for disembarkation day. But why do they make it so hard to avoid carbs and sugar? If you have to avoid the fruit, the breads, the pastries, pasta, potato and rice, then there's little left to choose from. And breakfast hardly changed. By the time I got home I was craving vegetables. The disinfectant gel dispensers at the entry to the buffet and occasionally seen elsewhere were not working properly - the sensor was not detecting that people were putting their hands in to get the gel. And hygiene was NOT being enforced. What's the point of having gel, or all those washing stations, if nobody has to actually use them? And when they were used the staff did not tidy them up - whether it be by wiping up water spills or getting rid of carelessly discarded paper.

Il Campo Restaurant was nice enough. I just wish it was open for breakfast and/or lunch as well.

Cirque de Soleil was a bit meh. Dinner selection was limited, and wasn't all that good, to be honest. The show itself was less than an hour, and you couldn't have wine from your drinks package, not even premium. You had to choose from a limited selection of wines - bottle only, not by the glass.

The LED ceiling is certainly impressive... but... every so often it displayed a montage of guest photographs taken from their Instagram accounts. On our last night during our dinner at the Japanese restaurant we noticed that one of the photos chosen, when featured, was cropped and blown up to show just the ladies' breast area. Giant boobies on the ceiling would have been great for the gentlemen, I'm sure, but as an older lady trying to eat her dinner it really wasn't appreciated. Somebody please talk to whoever manages that montage about more appropriate picture selection.

When you leave, you walk through the arcade to the sound of "Time to Say Goodbye" (the song used for the Olympics years ago, and the LED roof displays videos of lots of the ship staff waving goodbye. It was quite touching, in a way. Our luggage group was "pink" but that color was nowhere to be found on the TV screens at all the carousels. We had to find a staff member - a challenge on its own - to find out where our luggage was. It turned out pink had been lumped in with "fuchsia". We had quite a wait for our taxi.

swisstrailblazer's Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Aurea Balcony Stateroom

The cabin is small, but we only sleep in it so that's not an issue. BUT, there is nowhere near enough storage and the bathroom is far too small. And the sliding wardrobe doors are awkward and hard to move. There's an area of hanging space that is hard to get to because the door does not slide fully out of the way. If young, slim, and flexible you will not have a problem with the bathroom. But if you are slightly larger, or have shoulder / back problems, you'll struggle to reach the toilet roll which is under the basin bench below the level of the toilet seat itself. We gave up and put the toilet roll on the bench instead of the holder. I must say, however, that the ventilation of the shower was the best I've experienced on a ship. The hinges for the door to the bathroom are tight, and noisy. You'll definitely wake your partner if you go to the loo in the middle of the night. The bin is a recycling only bin - one compartment for plastic, one for paper, one for food - and too small. It took us a few nights to find the more general rubbish bin inside the cabinet below the bathroom sink.

Our cabin steward was polite, but there was a hair on the bathroom sink when we moved in that didn't disappear until several days later (we left it there to see how long it would take). My husband caught a cold and went through tissues at a rate of knots. When empty we put the tissue box on the sink bench so that the cabin steward could easily see it and replace it, but he still missed it once and we had to call housekeeping. And we missed the little touches. He did not do things like put our PJs neatly back on the bed after making it.

As for Zoe and the medallion - what can I say - they're just gimmicks. The medallion was rarely seen on a guest, and when I tried to use it to open our cabin door it didn't work. After the first day we just didn't bother with it anymore and left the wrist band in our cabin. Zoe is basically useless. You can use it to turn the TV on and off but can't use it to select live TV, or a movie, or pick a channel so you end up having to use the remote control anyway. And you can't use it to turn off the lights in the cabin either. If you ask the time, it answers. If you ask about the weather, it offers to turn on the TV to show you the weather forecast but then you have to find the remote (again) to indicate select which cabin resident is asking the question before the weather is actually displayed. Why it needs to know who is asking defies understanding. Ask Zoe "what time is my tour" or "what time is my dinner booking" and you are simply told to check your ticket, or to contact the restaurant. Ask other stuff and you're invariably told to contact a crew member, or read your paperwork. There's a list of suggested questions, and it does answer those answers correctly, however by the time you've listened all the way to the end you've forgotten everything that was already said, and it's all information that is in the daily planner. Basically, Zoe is a gimmick that just repeats information that is readily available elsewhere and is not personalised AT ALL.

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