We did a week on Grandiosa from Genoa to Malta and back on 25/10.
It was great, we felt really safe and looked after. We covid tested 3 days before departure at home then again on the day of departure (MSC's test in port) and again 3 days before disembarking. Gel was everywhere as were good handwashing stations which we were made to use before all meals. We wore masks everywhere except at table but this didn't really spoil it - you get used to it.
It was a shame they mucked a few things up... they lied to us before departure saying we could choose dining time between 5.30 or 7.30. This was to make us choose 7.30 as the 5.30 didn't exist. I think they hold the 9.30 slots for either Italians or higher paying guests. We should have asked to change...
Also Cirque du Soleil was closed. The other entertainment was good - we understood there were not enough guests to warrent big shows and the "Beatles" lookalikes were good and did a good show. The shows were very short though.
They also used the excuse of weather to keep the water slide park closed for all except one day, when it rained. Guess what - they can't keep it open if it rains and then they were not flexible enough to open it on another day so we didn't get to use it. That was really disappointing and spoilt the holiday for the kids so be prepared for it. That said all other kids activities were great - much better than Costa.
The pools and tons of jacuzzis were great, some sea water and all heated sufficiently for the end of october. There were plenty of sunloungers, sofas and chairs for lounging. Again better than Costa (especially Costa Smerelda which wasn't good)
Food was ok, breakfast good with an "egg man". Lunch buffet was ok, always good food but a smaller choice - I guess covid driven. Dinner wasn't as good as Costa (neither quality nor service) but was ok - a bit rushed though with plates cleared and new plates put down with one flourish. We purposely dine in the restaurant instead of the buffet to be more relaxed but this wasn't.
The bars were great - all a bit quiet, shame. The coffee was good in the bars (latte/cappuccino etc.) - sometimes a bit tricky getting it nice and hot though!
We were told it was a 6300 passenger ship with only 1300 on board. Another lie was when I phoned to book I checked very carefully that everything would be open - I was assured it would be and that there would be a full compliment of staff - there were however only about 400 (we were told). Ok, so it's covid but PLEASE DON'T LIE.
The cabins were ok (we were 4 in it) and we were upgraded from seaview to balcony which we didn't really use. The beds were good, pillows, duvets and duvet covers good and don't ruckle up or untuck. The kids' bunks however were a bit short but the kids were ok. Bathrooms small (but good and good showers) as were wardrobes but we managed.
Excursions (obligatory otherwise you're not allowed off - covid regulations) were really good. We did Naples/Pompei and Valetta/Mdina. Quite pricey but worth it.
If you just want a veggying holiday and not get off at all then it's great. The public areas, dome with its dome show, deck 15 pools/jacuzzis and atrium are quite spectacular, as good at Costa Diadema and much better than Smerelda.
Staff were great, really friendly and worked hard. They weren't allowed off for three months. Shivangee to name but one of the great bar staff - but they were all great.
All in all a really good cruise - definitely safe, good value for money and we'd go again even in covid times. Just a few niggles that spoilt it - shame.
Really good and covid safeView All 505 Pompeii Walking Tour Reviews