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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Just finished an MSC cruise on the Armonia to Cuba...I will never be sailing with MSC again. The ship is looking "long in the tooth:" dirty stained carpets, worn finishes, and just all-around looking tired and old. Cabins ... Read More
Just finished an MSC cruise on the Armonia to Cuba...I will never be sailing with MSC again. The ship is looking "long in the tooth:" dirty stained carpets, worn finishes, and just all-around looking tired and old. Cabins didn't have enough outlets, and the crew - while generally "fine" - was not exceptional in any way. In short, there was nothing on this cruise the blew my socks off: not the entertainment, not the accommodations, not the food, not the service. Everything was just kind of "meh." The food in the restaurant was unexceptional at best, and thrown-together at worst. Buffet: way too small for the size of the ship. Entertainment, especially the shows, was mediocre compared to other cruise lines. None of the crew - including the entertainment - appeared happy to be on this cruise, and everyone was simply going through the motions. Worst: we sat on the tender boat to get back on the ship for 45 minutes because their re-boarding process is INCREDIBLY inefficient. MSC isn't ready to do battle with Carnival PLC's cruise lines or Norwegian or RC. Won't be making this mistake again...! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
My best friend and I choose this cruise because we have been wanting to go to Cuba. We both have been on this ship before. I am just going to get to the point. The second day I was showering and noticed the water was coming out the shower. ... Read More
My best friend and I choose this cruise because we have been wanting to go to Cuba. We both have been on this ship before. I am just going to get to the point. The second day I was showering and noticed the water was coming out the shower. No big deal i thought. step out the shower to find my feet under water. Well the room flooded and into the hallway. Our stateroom attendant was awesome. They brought in this huge blower to dry the floor in the room. Well we leave out for a couple of hours to come back to a room smelling like mildew. We told our attendant we cannot stay in the smelly room. We go and talk to the customer service people and at first they tell us they dont have a room to put us in. Then they blame my friend for the floor still being wet saying she turned the blower off(we weren't in the room). They were so nasty to her i was appalled. Somehow they found a room for us, so we had to pack up all our things and move to the new room. Our new stateroom attendant was so horrible he complained to customer service and had the tips taken off(we gave cash to the 1st attendant). The manager of the floor said he was going to give us 30% off a future cruise within the next year, cool. fast forward 3 weeks later and we got $77 off. This was the worse ship I have ever been on. The dinningroom service wasn't great either. I asked for some crackers to take my meds and they never brought them. But they had soup and crackers. They were lacking in service there too. just simple stuff like I asked for no ice and they bring ice(i am always cold). The guys couldn't even get our names right (kristin and rebecca). The food was just okay, and the waiters didn't listenq when i asked for certain things. To be honest i have sailed many ships with Royal and their customer service has gone down the drain big time. The best part of the cruise was the Havana excursion. we did the Havana bucket list and it was amazing. It is a long excursion but you get to do everything....smoke a cigar, rum tasting, site seeing, dancing and local food. worth the cost. Quick recap... cabin was horrible, service was horrible, dining was meh, excursion was awesome Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We choose this cruise because the original itinerary included Santiago, Cuba. Last November we were on the Holland America Veendam and sailed to Havana and Cienfuego. Havana is a large city and we decided another trip (plus Santiago) was ... Read More
We choose this cruise because the original itinerary included Santiago, Cuba. Last November we were on the Holland America Veendam and sailed to Havana and Cienfuego. Havana is a large city and we decided another trip (plus Santiago) was of interest to us. As it turned out after 49 cruise with 8 different cruise company this was definitely out worse cruise. Not sure when Santiago, Cuba was cancelled and replaced with the Cayman Islands we could not tender into Santiago. But we did accept that. However, the cruise itself was just short of a disaster and like others we were happy to disembark March 25. To start the cabins are tiny and we ended up with bunk beds over our own. Not much room to move but my wife did bump her head twice. The news channels on the TV were not available until the last three days and even then half the time the picture and sound was frozen. No movies in the cabin to watch and only 2 that were shown up on the top deck. The Windjammer cafe was always jammed with people eating overcook food. The windows all around the ship were dirty which ruins the views of the seas. I finally hit the ceiling when I order a package of 3 wines and after the first bottle was told I had to have of one of each of he three choices. I fought that one out until the Director of Food and Beverages relented and allowed us to have a second bottle of the one we preferred. The food in the dining room was mediocre at best. What a tremendous difference between our Cuban cruise on the Veendam and the just concluded trip on the Empress of the Seas. NEVER AGAIN will we sail with Royal Caribbean. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We just disembarked from this cruise and we feel SCAMMED. Be ready for subpar service, a rundown ship, a truly awful excursion selection (and team) and a terrible schedule. Communication is at a minimum on the MSC Armonia - we ended ... Read More
We just disembarked from this cruise and we feel SCAMMED. Be ready for subpar service, a rundown ship, a truly awful excursion selection (and team) and a terrible schedule. Communication is at a minimum on the MSC Armonia - we ended up being booked on a WeightWatchers cruise. Be careful booking with MSC, the WW participants were kind - but imagine if they book a less hospitable cruise takeover. Overall, we were expecting a luxury Caribbean cruise line and instead non-WW guests were treated as an afterthought by staff. Furthermore, delays are not explained, arrivals and departures change on a whim, and you never truly know what you signed up for. Expect to be nickle and dimed every step of the way including a bill of over $200 for having your room cleaned, extra charge for tequila (even with the unlimited drink package), and fees for the internet package (THAT DOES NOT WORK). The excursions. Bad bad bad. The on-board excursions staff are rude. The excursions themselves are overpriced. Our tour in Havana was government sponsored propaganda with a guide who could barely speak English. The taxi drivers spoke better English than him. We ended up getting an amazing private tour the next day - riding in a 50s convertible isn’t worth the extremely high price. The ship itself is old and small - not a big deal, since that’s all that the Havana port can fit. The entertainment was bizarre. Sometimes we’d go to an event and it just wouldn’t be happening. This could be because more than half the ship was WeightWatchers and doing their own private events. It made nightlife quite boring. We would arrive to empty rooms where events were supposed to happen. One night, at midnight, the disco had all the strobe lights going while the house lights were on and no music was playing. Again, bizarre. Oftentimes, we’d arrive to the musicians playing to an empty room - I attribute this to the WW cruise diverting passengers and attracting a crowd less inclined to enjoy the nighttime entertainment. Most people took this cruise to go to Cuba - which is what MSC advertised. First of all, most (non-restaurants) places in Cuba close around 4-5 PM. Disembarking the ship by 3 means you have very little time to explore on your first day. Furthermore, Cuba (a Catholic country) is closed down on Sundays, so don’t expect any more on your second day. So the second half of your time in Cuba is minimized because a lot of shops and museums are closed. Some positives, our waiter at dinner was attentive and kind - but when we ate elsewhere the service didn’t match. The bartenders will also make you wait, even when no one else is at the bar. Our room was kept clean. Always plenty of seating on the open decks. It’s obvious that this cruise line isn’t aware what Americans enjoy, and has a very long way to go until I would ever recommend it. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We are retired and have never been to Cuba before. We thought this would be the perfect cruise for us. We couldn’t have been more wrong. Our first impression was great disappointment. The pool was netted and the water was green. The ... Read More
We are retired and have never been to Cuba before. We thought this would be the perfect cruise for us. We couldn’t have been more wrong. Our first impression was great disappointment. The pool was netted and the water was green. The hot tubs were netted and empty. This was to be the theme of our experience as there so many time things were out of order or closed for maintenance. The soft serve machine was down, three of the seven treadmills were inoperable and the gym was insufficient for the number of guests wanting to use it. We resorted to walking on the walking deck, which was also closed for maintenance in some areas. This ship just came out of dry dock and it was evident. The Windjammer and bars were lacking in supplies that had not been restocked in time for the cruise, but we’re eventually restocked by day five. The shore excursions left a lot to be desired as one was canceled just days before we boarded the ship. Actually after experiencing one of RCL tours with this cruise, we were blessed that it was canceled. We booked a tour for a night in Cuba with RCL and it was so bad, the majoryof people walked out. The music was amateurish at best. We paid $109 per person to walk to a local restaurant and get two drinks and an appetizer that consisted of sliced cold cuts, cheese, grated carrots, and lettuce. We walked across the courtyard to another restaurant had two drinks, an appetizer and tipped our server and the cost of that was about $35 total ( not per person). What a huge mark up for profit, especially when you can get a Lobster dinner in town between $12-15 per person. If anything we’ve reminded ourselves of why de shouldn’t book tours with the cruise line and continue booking thru Airbnb. Our tours in Cienfuegos and Havana that we booked thru them were simply amazing and so much more affordable. We had a three hour walking tour with a small group of five and the cost to us was $45. Our guide even bought us gelato and mojitos as we toured. We had breakfast in Chops and they were slow and didn’t listen to what I requested. I asked for an omelet with mushroom, bell peppers and cilantro and I got an oil covered omelet with tomatoes, onions, and spinach. I ended up not eating it. As we waited we observed ceiling that were missing, paint that was peeled or incomplete. The size of the ship was nice, however, as we didn’t feel overwhelmed by the number of passengers on the ship and there were plenty of areas to go for a quiet retreat if we needed it. With all that being said, I would probably sail again on this ship, but would wait a year so that all the issues could be resolved. I certainly WOULD NOT book another shore excursion thru the cruise line. Airbnb experiences had won my loyalty and business for shore excursions. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Anyone reading my other reviews will know that I am a huge fan of Regent, we have met many lovely people over the years, welcomed them to our hoes and even gone to their weddings. As Cruise Critic makes clear in its own review of the ... Read More
Anyone reading my other reviews will know that I am a huge fan of Regent, we have met many lovely people over the years, welcomed them to our hoes and even gone to their weddings. As Cruise Critic makes clear in its own review of the Voyager, the make up of the guests are generally well educated, well travelled people and they choose Regent because they will meet likeminded people. The ship, staff, officers and entertainment were all exactly as I describe in my review of the first half of our cruise. Thoroughly decent, hard working and friendly people who I would happily sail around the world with forever. Why then, you will be asking, have I rated this cruise 'terrible'. The simple answer is that having broken our 17 day cruise in two without telling us, there was also one other fact that Regent had omitted to mention when we booked - which was that they had booked two groups of 250 each on 'corporate incentive trips'. We can only speculate (and Regent has not denied) that there was always a plan to split the cruise and that these two groups were already booked on the Voyager when we booked 9 months ago - that can be the only explanation for limited availability to us and then lots of availability for the first 10 days. So, 500 passengers got off in Miami on 5 March and two groups got on. One group was no problem, well behaved, beautifully dressed although ultimately they were a group and would wear their corporate T-shirts to remind us we were on a corporate trip and did not join in with things like trivia (which went from standing room only to three teams overnight). However, the second group were something else. As I want to ensure that Cruise Critic print this review I will not go into detail about them, suffice to say there was a virtual mutiny aboard especially with the 73 guests who had booked a 17 day cruise and were now trapped on a ship with 250 people on a 'booze cruise'. Guests were demanding meetings with the captain (what could he do?), the corridors being patrolled every evening to try and enforce the dress code, the pool deck became a no go area. There was no mid cruise survey done... Yes we were on a lovely ship, with lovely food (delayed due to our fellow guests ordering everything off the menu in one sitting) and we got to see some lovely places. But it was that feeling of dread coming back to the ship, the frustration of not being able to go to the pool, the worry that any of them would be on an excursion we were booked on. But most importantly it was that feeling of betrayal that this beloved brand that have looked after us so well and who we have such fond memories of, could have done this to us in such a cold and calculating way. Regent have assured us, in writing, that this was a mistake and will never happen again. However, they seem to believe that because we have had so many lovely trips with Regent we can overlook one bad experience. We work very hard to be able to afford the Regent experience and this was a week of our lives and precious holiday time that we will never get back and for which we paid full price. We have come home more stressed and frustrated than when we went which is getting worse by the day as Regent head office bury their heads further into the sand and refuse to recognise the problem. Mistakes happen but the art of good customer service is how you recover from them and it seems that Regent still have that lesson to learn. As soon as they realised the scale of the problem they should have dispatched a senior executive out to the ship to apologise in person and offer those affected something. This is not about money, it is about recognition of the monumental mistake made (or imposed on them from above) and there are many things that they could have done which would have cost them very little at the time. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
So we wanted to visit Cuba and thought a cruise would be a stress free way to experience it. While Cuba was great, the cruise part was horrible. The ship had just gotten out of dry dock and was clearly in no way ready to sail with ... Read More
So we wanted to visit Cuba and thought a cruise would be a stress free way to experience it. While Cuba was great, the cruise part was horrible. The ship had just gotten out of dry dock and was clearly in no way ready to sail with passengers. When we first arrived, there were rust stains on our carpet in our state room from the sprinkler, things were dusty, the closet door was off the hinge, our hot water and water pressure didn't work, some drawers didn't open and some did but were old and rickety. There was even an exacto-knife blade left in one of the drawers. Our balcony floor had some sort of grime on it to the point that we didn't even want to step foot out on it. They corrected the stain and water pressure situation. That night however, at about midnight, we began hearing banging and noises that sounded like hammering that went on until 4 in the morning at which time loud moving of table and chairs began. Sure enough, there was a construction crew working in the middle of the night on the pool deck immediately above our cabin. This went on for 3 nights in a row, despite being told it would not happen again. Even when that stopped the 4th night, we would continue to hear the moving of the table and chairs when the cleaning crew began around 4a.m. We go no uninterrupted sleep the entire time! At one point we began to smell very strong sewer stench that went on for two and a half days. There was a maintenance crew working on pipes during that time so clearly there was a problem. We heard from several people that their toilets overflowed and one lady said her hair dryer even caught fire! The entire ship is very dated, with cabinetry in the cabins that don't work, stains on apolstry, musty smells in many areas of the ship, no shade on the pool deck, pool not even filled or working the first two days. The staff did the best they could with a horrible situation and the food was actually quite good. The ship itself was beyond horrible and Royal Caribbean should be ashamed of themselves to send it off in this condition. It absolutely reflects on the quality of this corporation and we will not longer give them our business. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
There is a REASON there are very few pictures on RC website of this ship- it is because it is old and stinky has few amenities and is basically the WORST ship I have ever been on RC or otherwise (have been on Celebrity RC Gaugan NCL ... Read More
There is a REASON there are very few pictures on RC website of this ship- it is because it is old and stinky has few amenities and is basically the WORST ship I have ever been on RC or otherwise (have been on Celebrity RC Gaugan NCL Carnival) The ship is very smelly with weird hot smelly pockets The ship is LOUD - I was up until 2 last night with the constant noise The Gym SPA and pool area are a JOKE THE FOOD IS ROUGH - They charge now for ROOM SERVICE so heads up on that (10 with the mandatory tip include for a RS order) The boat is a non-stop attempt to sell you CRAP (and when I say crap I mean crap) The info talk given regarding disembarking in Cuba the ship staff made INAPPROPRIATE comments about the Women working the port in Cuba - it was sexist creepy unnecessary and rude Cienfuego is a waste of time of a stop - there is nothing really there - it smells walking into town and you are BOMBARDED with taxis or shore excursions (typical 3rd World) peddlers they are mildly aggressive - Everything has been broken - ice machine ice cream machine drink machines - this ship is like the WORST car at the USED CAR LOT I would NEVER NEVER NEVER recommend this BOAT to anyone and frankly RC is on my poo list too- I will NOT use RC for any cruise ever again - this is ridiculous I am still on board - it is so bad I felt compelled to write this NOW Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I’m a “Diamond Plus" member with RCL. The opportunity came up to visit Cuba, and it has always been on my bucket list. Having recently retired, I added this to the list of future cruises I booked with the cruise line. We were ... Read More
I’m a “Diamond Plus" member with RCL. The opportunity came up to visit Cuba, and it has always been on my bucket list. Having recently retired, I added this to the list of future cruises I booked with the cruise line. We were told we could start embarcation at 11:30, but a representative came out and told us that there were going to be delays letting us onboard as the ship "wasn't ready to receive us yet." I found out later that this was the first day it had been our from drydock. Let me start by saying if this had been my first cruise with RCL, it would have been my last. The ship was in such disrepair. The first issue was the pool. The water was green and they covered it with a net so no one could use it for the first two days, and the hot tubs were empty. When we went to use the gym, three of the seven treadmills were out of order and there wasn’t enough equipment to satisfy the demand, so we opted to use the walking deck. This was partially closed off so there was mixed direction because everyone had to turn around and go in a different direction. This resulted in chaos on the deck as joggers tried to dodge the casual walkers going in both directions. We wanted to enjoy a soft-serve cone, but the machine was tagged (just like the treadmills) with a "Out of Order" sign. We had breakfast in the Specialty restaurant CHOPS. When I ordered my eggs benedict, the egg yolks were solid. I ordered an omelet with mushrooms, bell peppers and cilantro, and I received an oil laden omelet with tomatoes, spinach, and onions. While waited for our meal, we observed the paint peeled from the ceiling and beams, as well as missing ceiling tiles. When we went into the Windjammer to get coffee, there were no coffee mugs or soup bowls. We had to hunt them down. In some areas of the the ship, you could smell chemicals, as it was still undergoing renovations such as painting, and carpet removal/replacement. In the hallway where our cabin was located, the halls were extremely hot because the contractors left the doors to the workrooms open and all the heat from there filled the hallways. Certainly not conditions for anyone to be working in, so I understand why they left the doors open to let some of the heat into the hallways. As for our Cabin, it was very tight! You couldn't walk around the bed as the end of the bed was abutted against a small table that held the TV. The location was not desirable, and I'm not sure how we ended up at the front of the ship, when I specifically stated we don't like the front of the ship, we prefer the middle or back. With that being said, we were located directly beneath the theater, so twice nightly we were entertained with the noise of the performers dancing on the floors over our heads. If that wasn't enough to irritate someone, there was the added feature of the anchors going down which rattled our cabin and filled it with noise. Every time we got underway, our room rattled and roared as well. (This wouldn't have been so bad if we didn't get underway at 1:00 a.m. or if it occurred when we weren't in the room) When we ordered drinks from the bar, we asked for a MasterCard (a red and yellow drink) but the bartender used coconut instead of mango when he made it. We had to stand there and watch him the second time to make sure that it didn't have coconut and sure enough, he almost did it again! We booked two tours, but one was cancelled before we even got on the ship. I suppose you could say it was a blessing because the tour that we did book, was a huge disappointment. We were led by a guide about three blocks from the ship to a local restaurant (we walked there), and we sat in a group table. We were served two drinks each (mojito, and cuba libre), and an appetizer (four slices of coldcuts, and cheeses, and shredded carrots and lettuce). There was a band playing in the restaurant - one that Simon Cowl would very quickly shut down - and a couple of dancers. All of this came at the bargain price of over $200/couple. WHAT???? SERIOUSLY!!! This was so bad, that everyone left within an hour. The tour was supposed to start at 9:00 and end at 12:00, but no one was there when we walked past it at 11:00. When we walked out, we went across the courtyard to another restaurant that had a band playing. We ordered two drinks each and an appetizer and the total (including tip) came to $35.00. What a mark-up. If anything, this was an important lesson in NOT BOOKING with the cruiseline for tours in the future. We went for dinner the next night in the same neighborhood and had a lobster dinner and drinks, and the total came to $34.00. (Lobster was $12/plate and drinks were $2.50 ea. (Again, mojitos and cuba libre). Overall a huge disappointment and completely missed all the marks for the amenities that we use while traveling and not what we’ve come to expect from. RCL Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
The cruise was chosen because of the destination. I was very interested in going to Havana, Cuba. We booked a personal, private tour there which was fabulous. We did not get to Great Stirrup Key because of rough seas. Since we had ... Read More
The cruise was chosen because of the destination. I was very interested in going to Havana, Cuba. We booked a personal, private tour there which was fabulous. We did not get to Great Stirrup Key because of rough seas. Since we had to tender to the island it would have been dangerous. Having had a dangerous tender experience on a Norwegian cruise years ago, I was very happy to just have another day at sea. This cruise included the open bar. I thought that would be great, but it proved to produce LONG lines. I don't think the bars were properly staff. Our embarkment was delayed because the ship was late coming out of dry dock. My first impression by the Norwegian Rep directing us to our check in position what terrible. In asking her a question, she was rude and told me, and I quote, 'I really don't care." I will never take a Norwegian cruise again. Read Less

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