As you probably see from the other reviews, this cruise was a mess. We went on one of its first voyages on 12/18/22, and it is our last MSC cruise. We’ve been on both the MSC Divina and Armonia before and had nothing but good things to say about those. However this cruise is nothing like those. Our cabin was a Junior Suite on deck 9 which let me tell you, is nothing like a Junior Suite on any tiene cruise. For starters, the balcony was around 15 feet long and 5 feet wide. The bathroom was less than 5 feet in total length. I don’t understand why they’d didn’t take out some space from the balcony and made the bathroom a little larger. Taking a shower was uncorfortamble for us and we’re not even tall or large people. Our room had a creaking noise in the rear wall next to the balcony door. They sent out a carpenter and the carpenter said he couldn’t do anything because the noise was coming from inside the wall. The noise was excruciating and basically impossible to sleep with and would only get worse as the boat rocked more. Guest services told us that they couldn’t do anything about it because there were no other rooms in our section available and the only thing they could do is offer an emergency room for one night which obviously doesn’t solve the original problem as we would have to go back to our room the next night. When we asked if they could just put us in a room that was in a lesser class and just reimburse us the difference, they said that their policy didn’t allow this because it would be considered a downgrade. We didn’t care if it was a downgrade as long as we would have a room with no noise. This made our 8 night cruise experience horrible. Not only was guest services unable to accommodate us, their employees weren’t even professional. The front desk employee, Vandana was very thoughtful and tried her best to find a solution however, her supervisor who was in the back room for the 30 minutes we were there trying to find a solution refused to come out when we asked for him. Very unprofessional on his part.
Apart from this terrible experience, the cruise itself wasn’t good compared to the other MSC ships we’ve been on. For starters, the buffet has the same breakfast, lunch, and dinner everyday. There is no variety, nothing changes from one day to the next. The only thing that changes is a meat section that has a chef cutting meat but there was only 2 or 3 different meats throughout the whole cruise that they would just rotate. The food in the buffet was often cold as well and the long lines to get food or get a table was extremely annoying and not very organized. The food in the main restaurant was on a whole other level compared to the buffet.The food was pretty good for the most part and the service from our waiters, Mahendra Tek Bahadur, Josue Cartagena, and Gerald Abayon, was even better and quite frankly, was one of the only parts of the cruise that we looked forward to every night. They were all very welcoming and helpful and I’m sure they will move up in their positions in the future. We also noticed that for the first time in ANY cruise that we’ve been on, ice cream is not included. Ice cream was only included in the buffet at a certain time, but outside in the ice cream parlor that was open all day on deck 18, they would charge you $4 for the ice cream from the machine. What’s even worse is that for the specialty ice cream that’s not from the machine, they charge you the exact same price. How does that make sense? They also charge you for table tennis like others mentioned which also makes no sense. After paying over $2k a person for an 8 night cruise, it’s a slap in the face to see the cruise try to squeeze every penny out of you. Overall this cruise was a nightmare and the many people we spoke to along the way said the same. Very unlike MSC and it’s a shame to see it like this. For being such a brand new cruise on its second or third voyage, its very disappointing to say the least. If you’re thinking about booking on this cruise, I suggest you look at others such as Princess or Celebrity which won’t disappoint you.