We sailed on the MSC Seaside for a week and immediately took another week cruise on the Princess Regal. These ships are quite different and attract a different crowd. For this review, I will often compare the two for a more informative review.
The embarkation was as smooth as one can get thousands of people on a boat in a few hours. Yes, we had to wait, but in each case it was no more that twenty minutes in line, I think this is acceptable. Both ships had port facilities that was meant to handle large crowds, MSC had recently built their own.
MSC closed the staterooms until 2 PM on embarkation, we were able to access our stateroom at 1 PM on Princess. The MSC Seaside is very flashy, and yet elegant with chrome and mirrors everywhere, while the Princess Regal had fancy wood decorations concentrating around the lighting. Unfortunately the fake wood reminded me of my 1985 Chrysler LeBaron Woody so I was less impressed with this ship. The MSC Seaside had a open feel in all common areas, while the Princess Regal had many circular areas with seats for a more private feel. The Atrium on the Seaside was 4 levels in height and was impressive with chrome, mirrors, and a very fancy stairway, while the Princess was 3 levels with more of the wood and fancy lighting.