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34 Naples to Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

Just back from a week on the Bellissima. It was amazing! 9 previous cruises with RC, first time with MSC and think we're converted. Positives: We were mainly converted thanks to the food, RC is very American, and as MSC is ... Read More
Just back from a week on the Bellissima. It was amazing! 9 previous cruises with RC, first time with MSC and think we're converted. Positives: We were mainly converted thanks to the food, RC is very American, and as MSC is Italian it's obvious via the food which was just amazing! Even the buffet was 10/10. The homemade piazzas 24hrs a day are AMAZING, compared to Sorrentos in RC. Yes the portions are smaller than RC in the main dining room but I like that, your're not too full and also means you can try more than one main if you want and not be too full. The entertainment was amazing, no comedians or magician due to so many languages, all musical but they're very good! There are entertainment staff that hang around with the passengers which are brilliant at getting people up dancing and enjoying themselves. We're a young couple and always disappointed in RC that the bars and nightclub don't really stay open past 1am, this cruise the music was going until 4am and always full of people dancing. The ports of call were all amazing, except Marseilles we weren't too impressed with. (Naples, Sicily, Malta, Genoa, Barcelona, Marseilles, day at sea, Naples, not in the correct order). Disembarking was so much better than RC, we didn't get off the ship until 2pm after lunch. Embarking was also so much faster and easier, as unlike RC where everyone gets on and off the same day, there are different people every day so its much faster. Negatives: Too crowded everywhere esp the pools and Jacuzzi, you need to queue for the Jacuzzi. The worst thing was the cirque du soleil (shows were amazing) but that you have to pay. I have never experienced on a cruise where you have to pay for a show, I though this was bad. Options are "Dinner & Show €35" or "Cocktail & Show €15". I said "neither please as I have the drinks package, so just the show please", replied "no problem you're booked in" Then to my surprise we paid for the show unknowingly. I think I should have been told ok well it's still going to be €15 just so you know. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
My family of four sailed in July out of Genoa. Embarking was easy and fast. Ship was beautiful, Immaculate , and easy to navigate. The staff were very friendly and courteous, the waiters were fantastic, our room steward was awesome , ... Read More
My family of four sailed in July out of Genoa. Embarking was easy and fast. Ship was beautiful, Immaculate , and easy to navigate. The staff were very friendly and courteous, the waiters were fantastic, our room steward was awesome , every employee on this ship was great . The food was good , there are more restaurants that you pay extra for than are included . I didn’t like the fact that you couldn’t get ice cream anywhere unless you paid extra . I think MSC nickel and dimes too much, too many fees for anything extra . There was enough food where you didn’t have to buy anything extra . The ship was crowded but we always found a table for breakfast and lunch at the buffet . We ate dinner In the dining room every night and the food was very good and had enough variety. We booked the fun pass for the kids online before we left and it was a good deal for $120 you were able to spend 180 euros on games in the game room , the card lasted for both kids for the entire cruise , they also had basketball and soccer but the basketball hoop was broken the first 5 days of our cruise so it was mostly soccer . I also booked the laundry package for $48 they washed 40 items of clothing and if you booked online you can give them a few pieces a day until you added up to the 40 items I didn’t have to have it done all together which was nice because I was able to bring less clothes . The WiFi package was good too I had no issues the speed was fine and it worked well I purchased the unlimited plan and my family toggled back and forth using it and it worked well. I also purchased the cirque show which I really think should have been Included in the cruise fare , very cheesy to charge for a show , the show wasn’t that good it was just ok , my 14 year old fell asleep during it and my 16 year old was bored . The drinks that were included in the ticket were awful you don’t get to choose your drink they had two choices of drinks that were sitting on a bar when you walked In and they were not good , they didn’t even have soda for the kids they were given virgin mojitos. The other shows on board that were included were good and you can book them on the screens around the ship with your room key , very easy and all the shows were available and we booked them the same day . We booked a family room which was two rooms that connected and our balconies connected too , this was a great choice as we had lots of room and having two bathrooms were convenient. We booked shore excursions with the ship and they were good , I was very happy with them . I’ve cruised RCL, NCL, Disney and MSC Fantasia in the past , I do like MSC they do Nickel and dime you with all the extra charges I feel they should include more with the cruise fare but overall I would recommend the Bellisima, the pools were nice crowded especially on sea day but that is expected . The staff were wonderful , they work very hard and have to serve thousands of people with a smile every day I give them a lot of credit . The ports were amazing , I chose this ship because of the ports . We flew into Milan and took the FlixBus to Genoa the bus station is 2 blocks from the port which made the return very convenient. I would definitely book MSC again . Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
we have just returned from a weeks cruising on the Marella Explorer 2 from Naples to Messina / Dubrovnic / Split / Venice / Ancona back to Naples some people have mentioned Naples airport being a nightmare - we found it to be fine ... Read More
we have just returned from a weeks cruising on the Marella Explorer 2 from Naples to Messina / Dubrovnic / Split / Venice / Ancona back to Naples some people have mentioned Naples airport being a nightmare - we found it to be fine after collecting your luggage it was an approx 5 mins walk to board the coach on arrival at the cruise port ( approx 25 mins by coach) the boarding process was speedy and efficient - we arrived on board approx 1130 hrs ( we had an early flight from Stansted at 0600 hrs ) - our cabin was ready at 1230 hrs we had a great time / good food - especially the lovely Latitude and Vista restaurants / great entertainment couldn't fault anything we arranged all excursions ourselves - which we found was the most economical way our favourites were Dubrovnik and Venice which were both stunning and to round off a superb week , Captain Kostas stopped the ship off Stromboli ( Volcano) to watch it erupt - amazing would highly recommend this cruise / ship Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Our first ever cruise with the family on MSC Bellissima. All 4 of us (two teen boys) gave it 10/10. We could not fault anything. We had a balcony room and it was spotless, as was the entire ship. Food was really good and the staff are ... Read More
Our first ever cruise with the family on MSC Bellissima. All 4 of us (two teen boys) gave it 10/10. We could not fault anything. We had a balcony room and it was spotless, as was the entire ship. Food was really good and the staff are really amazing, despite working long hours, etc. Always a smile on their faces. Malta was the highlight of the cruise, we will definitely return there. Francesco & Leonalla in The Masters of the Sea bar were very attentive and deserve a special mention, they go out of their way to bring a smile to your face and entertain you, as was Gabriella and the Cuban guy in restaurant Posidena. Even though there was probably 4-5K passengers on board, it never felt over crowded and disembarking was smooth and efficient. We had a week in Sorrento afterwards but i think in future, i will stay first and cruise second, as you have far more choice of food on the ship. We ate in one of the speciality restaurants The Butchers Cut and the steaks and desserts did not disappoint, food and wine really good. The gym was a good size and boys also liked the indoor airconditioned multi sports hall. Really enjoyed the whole experience, MSC provided a superior service and will cruise again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I booked this cruise with my sister as a 'taster' for alot of cities in our bucket list and also wanted to experience what cruising was like. The booking process was floorless and staff at our local Tui (West bridgford, ... Read More
I booked this cruise with my sister as a 'taster' for alot of cities in our bucket list and also wanted to experience what cruising was like. The booking process was floorless and staff at our local Tui (West bridgford, Nottingham) very helpful and accomodating. They seemed genuinely excited for us! I'll talk about the cruise itself first: ship was lovely and was big enough you weren't falling over people. There were plenty of amenities and we didn't feel we lacked anything. The squid and anchor had a traditional British pub feeling and to sit on the back if the ship with staff topping up your drinks regularly was bliss. The coffee port was great for not just coffee but also books and board games, there was a slight charge for those (ourselves included) that weren't on the top up inclusive package but it was minimal in our opinion. The pool side was always a hive of activity and although got very busy we never struggled to find somewhere to chill on a sunbed. You do need to get there earlier or move beds around for shade but again, this was always manageable. Staff are on hand for anything you want. The show's in the show lounge were entertaining and there are some very talented performers. The decks are great for walking round on and just watching the world go by. Food: we are in vista which was always lovely, the carbonara was the best I have ever eaten and they use a cheese wheel table side to prepare it, latitude was great although peak times meant a short wait (pager and bar close by to wait), this only occured once during a 2 week stay and we only waited 10 minutes. They also did a lovely breakfast, french toast highly recommend! Nonna's was a break from a formal meal and we enjoyed the service and views, my sister had pizza and I had a calzone, both lovely. Snack shack does what it says on the tin, easy grab and go and plenty of choice. Market place is buffet and the choices are great, some reviews have been unkind about this place but we enjoyed it and after a long day sight seeing you don't always want to get dressed up for dinner and want something less formal. Cabin was very spacious (5006) and we had the reception and restaurants on our floor. Loads of space for things, wasn't disturbed by noise and was very pleased. This was an inside cabin and we don't feel we missed having a window or balcony at all. Special shout out to Idris and his team for keeping our cabin spotless and well stocked, brilliant team and do nice and accomodating! The app you can use is great source of information and we used this daily along with the cruise news. The trips we felt were well priced and enjoyed them all, organised and no issues for the 5 we booked in advance. We also got off at 2 other ports during our stay. Staff make you feel so special, nothing is too much trouble for them. They had the patience of saints for the more demanding people and were always smiling. The shops were great and had excellent deals on daily, Pandora was my favourite and the prices were impressive, I came away with 2 rings, 2 charms and a new bracelet and they were cheaper than on the mainland. Best bits, trvi fountain, Sorrento, Dubrovnik, Venice mind blowing, Highlight was our last night when we sailed past stromboli where an active volcano had erupted the week before was still active. To watch lava running down the side of the mountain and see periodic explosions was surreal. Overall we have absolutely loved our holiday and are definitely hooked on cruising. The bad bit (sorry); Naples airport. Never in my life have I experienced anything like this. On arrival we were told we would need to collect our cases after all. They took over 2 hours to come round the carousel, we then had a 10 min walk at the hottest time of the day and had to wait 90 mins in direct sunlight for coaches to take us to the ship as they were stuck in traffic. On our return journey we were made to wait 2 hrs to go through to the plane with around 300 other people in a small area with no air conditioning. One person passed out from the heat and had to be taken away by ambulance. Nobody would tell us anything and the staff were beyond unhelpful. When we finally got on the plane (90 min delay at this point) we were informed by the captain we couldn't go as our cases were still in the tarmac waiting to be put on. All in all, we returned to the UK 2 and a half hours later than expected. I would NEVER fly to Naples airport again and unless a different port is used would not go on explorer 2. That said, we will be booking with marella again, just avoiding Naples due to the diabolical service Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
As a National Customer Account Manger of one of the UK leading holiday companies and having now complete 15 Marella cruises I like to give an honest rounded option on the experience. Whilst this isn't a new ship and other reviews I ... Read More
As a National Customer Account Manger of one of the UK leading holiday companies and having now complete 15 Marella cruises I like to give an honest rounded option on the experience. Whilst this isn't a new ship and other reviews I read before the cruise also stated its new to the fleet and its a nice ship. The positives. Nice ship with some really good venues, bars and restaurants. The customer service from all the staff from cabins to bars & restaurants etc is excellent and what you would expect from Marella. The negatives. This ships sail out of Naples the worst airport experience I've had in 40 years both on arrival and departure so beware when you book. An hour and a half to get you luggage, another 20 minutes walk up bank with your cases to the coach park and another 20 minutes queue for the bus. Not the best start to a holiday going back was worse. Food was well below the standard and the worst myself and wife experienced in all our sailings. Respective tough meat dishes, no roast of the day,Jacket, boiled or roasts and only chips twice in the week. The sweet selection was basic and the same every night. As we and others arrived late on the ship due to the debacle at Naples airport the lunch buffet was closed and limited food on offer. The late night buffet was really basic and not worth the effort. We paid £100 for the drinks upgrade on the first day as I would rather drink Heineken rather than Fosters and my wife Bulmer rather than Strongbow ( personal choice) Two of the main bars Pool bar and the Squid and Anchor didn't stock these. The entertainment was pretty dreadful. The two best acts on the ship were the crew show and the guest artist from the UK. The bands The Collective were great but the Vibe were awful and looked and sounds as if the got together 5 minutes before the ship sailed. The rest of the entertainment crew were the worst I've seen on any cruise or even in the UK. This was an Adult cruise and they fed us kid type games shows backed up with poor jokes, lousy singers on top. If the Cruise Director/staff spent less time talking about themselves and put more focus on the customers it would have been better. The ports of call were good but the usual information you got maps etc from destination services were none existent. I purchase the internet for work back home if you don't use your megabytes you loose them. Summarise. Great ship. Excellent service. Entertainment rubbish. Food Poor. Talking on a new ship to the fleet, sticking it dry dock for two weeks and getting it out on the ocean is always going to have problems. You might change the name but not the previous shame. Marella have built up loyal following myself and wife included. The have built up the fleet of good ships and created a brand in Marella. This ship is way off the standard of any of the others and needs some serious surgery. I would give this ship a wide berth for 12 months till they sort the basics of the food and the entertainment out. I like many others would never travel into or out of Naples airport again its an nightmare. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
My husband and I chose Bellissima for two reasons; a fantastic itinerary and the fact that the ship was brand new. As expected, the ports did not disappoint, however, the cruise experience left a lot to be desired. Truth is, we never ... Read More
My husband and I chose Bellissima for two reasons; a fantastic itinerary and the fact that the ship was brand new. As expected, the ports did not disappoint, however, the cruise experience left a lot to be desired. Truth is, we never really felt that we were guests on this cruise, but rather passengers, on a new and beautiful ferry. With passengers embarking and disembarking daily, calls for lifeboat drills every afternoon, announcements being made in five languages, etc., we never did feel that there was any real beginning or end to our vacation. In fact, we boarded in Barcelona, and just two days later we were treated to the farewell show in the theatre. And we were on a seven day cruise!! Our cabin was fine, clean and comfortable, and the production show cast and shows were terrific, but unfortunately the behaviour of the passengers in the theatre was unbelievably rude and disrespectful to both entertainers and other passengers. It is really very difficult to understand why toddlers are seated in the front row at shows beginning at 9:15pm!! Obviously, MSC has not set, or chooses not to enforce, any standards of conduct in public places aboard this ship, as rudeness, pushing, and constant noise abound. The volume in the Market Grill was so loud that we couldn’t wait to finish our meals and get out. Other disappointments on this sailing were with the quality of the food, (French fries served with main meal and no vegetables of any sort), hot food not hot, no service of coffee in the dining room unless requested, etc. In fact, the service in the Market Grill and Dining Room was dismal, as it was not unusual to see service staff standing around stations rather than offering service to passengers. Similarly, in the Market Grill, not once did we see any service staff offer to bring a passenger a coffee, or to assist anyone in finding a seat etc. Additionally, we were extremely disappointed with the lack of activities for adults (all games were in the pool area where the noise was deafening), and the fact that there were no enrichment programs or even just talks on the ports, or on the Mediterranean, or anything, really. This cruise was a lesson learned for us; an error on our part which we will not repeat. However, we both believe that if MSC is hoping to join the ranks of the excellent mainstream cruise lines sailing out there, they really have their work cut out for them. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
this was chose for the places to visit that we liked to go to. Firstly can i point out that this ship is a New to Marella cruises and not a Brand new ship as some say and was never listed as a Brand new ship. Anyway on to the review , The ... Read More
this was chose for the places to visit that we liked to go to. Firstly can i point out that this ship is a New to Marella cruises and not a Brand new ship as some say and was never listed as a Brand new ship. Anyway on to the review , The flight was good and on time , on arrival at Naples airport we were at the far end of the airport to get off the flight the transfer buses were slow in arriving and on arrival in the airport we had to wait close on an hour for our luggage .one all luggage collected we were then pointed to were we had to get the transfer bus to the ship , this was a long walk not really suitable for the elderly or those not good on their feet. we were then directed to the transfer bus and told by a rep that we could not go straight to the ship as the was a hold up and we would be taken to have some food and drink in Naples , we settled down to pizzas and wine and was taken care of very well. eventually after a few hours the rep came and collected us and we made our way to the port . when we arrived it was total chaos no one was able to go on board as the Naples authority would not let on due to an outbreak of Neurovirus onboard from the last cruise. Communication was poor throughout the wait and very little place to sit until much later when they opened a conference lounge for people. Eventually about 7.00 pm we were allowed onboard and able to go to our cabin where the luggage was waiting for us. The pools and the hot tubs were closed for the first week The staff were very helpful even though their work load increased with having to serve passengers buffet food and drinks the first week Hand sanitisers were everywhere and the majority of passengers did use them but not everyone .( this is why viruses are spread ) We enjoyed the food in all of the eating places we visited Our favourite restaurant was Vista . Least favourite was Nonnas which was pizza and pasta that you picked yourself and was prepared from your order The snack shack for poolside snacks very good food ,and enjoyed the inclusive drinks. The broadway shows were varied and really good. Comedian was great as was the silent disco ( a must for everyone to see ) The Squid and Anchor pub held all different activities , Flutes was really good for pre dinner drinks .Plenty of activity onboard throughout the day and evening at the different venues depending on your tastes. We thought that the cruise line was penny pinching a bit this time . This being a new ship to them we expected better, quite Disappointing that they no longer give out any maps and information sheets for any of the ports. or daily news sheets. The reason given was t they wished to save paper. on the first week the weather was mixed with some of our finest British rain. Venice in the rain was not quite the same as last time. We had a medical emergency and had to turn round and head for land which was a total of 6 hours altogether. all in all the cruise was very good and made better by the group we met right at the beginning when taken for our food. Many thanks to all the crew onboard for their efforts to make us all welcome under this difficult situation. This was our 16th cruise with this cruise line and will still sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Sat on floor as little seating in Naples port for over 5 hours with approx 1000 people. Rolls and water far between if can run and get them. As a pensioner with arthritis i couldn’t so a lady bought me chocolate at shop as starving . ... Read More
Sat on floor as little seating in Naples port for over 5 hours with approx 1000 people. Rolls and water far between if can run and get them. As a pensioner with arthritis i couldn’t so a lady bought me chocolate at shop as starving . Very little information. Told ship being deep cleaned as noro virus onboard although passengers There from previous cruise. Onboard ship found it extremely cold in all areas. Air vents blowing cold air even though unusually cold in Italy. Cabin thermostat not working . Other people saying same. Only felt warmer second week in Greece when weather warmer. Still had cold areas though. Woken 08.40 first morning after a very cold night with extremely loud vibrating metal hammering above my cabin. Forty five minutes later c/services sent maintenance man. He phoned someone but didn’t speak. I visited c/service desk , told working on air con and would only last one day. Four days later after same noise, same time plus every afternoon to a degree every day I was distraught from lack of sleep and very upset it finally stopped. I had tatty grubby shower curtain until door fitted on day 12 of cruise. No tv for 4 days then hit and miss. Electrician fitting low level lights on my deck several days, huge cable reel and tools to walk round. Plus huge noisy blowers drying wet carpets in lift areas. Good choice food in buffet but mostly only luke warm, even meat and fish, possible due to very cold temperature in ship. On positive side. Crew were wonderful, friendly ,nothing too much trouble. Shows brilliant. Lattitude 53 restaurant lovely service and food. I paid a lot of money for this cruise and am bitterly disappointed and upset that marella would treat its passengers this way. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We did have an enjoyable cruise returning home 2 days ago from Naples. It was unfortunate that norovirus was onboard for our entire cruise. This meant long queues in the buffet and the hot tubs were closed. The staff were great even ... Read More
We did have an enjoyable cruise returning home 2 days ago from Naples. It was unfortunate that norovirus was onboard for our entire cruise. This meant long queues in the buffet and the hot tubs were closed. The staff were great even though their work load increased greatly with having to serve passengers the buffet food. Hand sanitisers were everywhere and the majority of passengers did use them. We had a balcony cabin although we didn't use the balcony due to the poor weather. Our air con did not work. Although we reported it to reception twice and to maintenance three times, it was not fixed although maintenance tried 3 times. Consequently our cabin was freezing. When we disembarked, I mentioned to reception that the air con was still faulty and that it was a shame that they did not follow up any problems. They said that they had followed it up with us and that we had confirmed that the air con was fixed! That did not happen. It was also unfortunate that on our last night our toilet stopped working. Maintenance had to come out twice to try to fix it. We enjoyed the food. Our favourite restaurant was Vista. Our least favourite was Nonnas which was pizza and pasta. We liked the snack shack for poolside snacks and enjoyed the inclusive drinks. The broadway shows were excellent. I did feel that the cruise line was penny pinching more than usual. This is a brand new ship and when I asked for a map of the ship, I was told that there weren't any. We were also told that they would no longer give out any maps and information sheets for any of the ports. The reason given was that they wished to save paper. Ironically at the end of the cruise they were selling cruise certificates signed by the captain for £4.95. Yes - work that one out! Disembarkation day was not great. Naples was refusing to allow passengers to leave the ship due to the illness onboard until certain checks had been carried out. We left the ship late and had a stressful journey home. Embarking passengers were given onboard spend for their inconvenience but nothing for those passengers caught up in the disembarkation chaos. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
My third Tui cruise and my last I’m afraid. I’m won’t be too hard in my review as you get what you pay for and this cruise was heavily discounted. Naples airport was very poor- many passengers over 65 struggled having to carry their ... Read More
My third Tui cruise and my last I’m afraid. I’m won’t be too hard in my review as you get what you pay for and this cruise was heavily discounted. Naples airport was very poor- many passengers over 65 struggled having to carry their luggage a long distance from the airport to the coaches. Uneven pavements, crowded walkways and tiredness after a flight don’t mix well. One mature lady had a fall and was took away by ambulance. I would not recommend this embarkation port for anyone with health or mobility issues, or those who would struggle to carry their cases. I know Tui won’t be using Naples for this ship next year. This may be one of the reasons ! The food was disappointing- poor choice for those with dietary needs. Our cabin was fine and everything worked . The cruise has been refitted and is pleasant. It does however lack the plush luxury you get on most other ships. Buffet restaurant more like a canteen - crowded and noisy with queues. There was a bug on board so extensive special measures were in place to prevent its spread. This couldn’t be helped and contributed to difficulties. The main areas are open plan and lack cosy comfort making it all feel abit like Butlins. All the staff very friendly and welcoming . Shops have a good choice of products. The shore excursions were well planned and organised which was better than my last Tui experience . To summarise - I expect more from a cruise and won’t be back Tui . As I’ve said, it was heavily discounted which is the reason for the three rating . Had i paid full price I would have been very disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We have sailed on the Seaside two previous times and had very good experiences. This time, things certainly changed ! Dining room dinners were substandard for sure, although our dining room staff were very nice and did a good job, ... Read More
We have sailed on the Seaside two previous times and had very good experiences. This time, things certainly changed ! Dining room dinners were substandard for sure, although our dining room staff were very nice and did a good job, doesn't make up for the food. Terrible selections and poor quality of entrees, the specialty restaurants were nothing short of perfect. We should not have to pay to get a good meal, even their pizza was terrible !at the buffet which we always enjoy. We got better pizza in Ocho Rios ! The bar staff was over burdened and apparently getting an olive for a Martini is a stretch ! They do a great meet and great and have done we enjoyed them on Seaside before. The rooms are small but we knew that from previous cruises on Seaside. Would I be going again on the Seaside, right now I need a rest from MSC !! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
The actual cruise with MSC was lovely but not sure I would be confident in booking with them again due to appalling customer service and organisation. Firstly MSC cancelled our cruise saying they would reimburse us for expenses in ... Read More
The actual cruise with MSC was lovely but not sure I would be confident in booking with them again due to appalling customer service and organisation. Firstly MSC cancelled our cruise saying they would reimburse us for expenses in reorganising our holiday around the new cruise dates. In the end they refused to reinburse for all our out of pocket expenses. They only paid us for two nights non refundable hotel bookings but of course as we were booking hotels later in the year the price had gone up and we ended up having to pay this expense ourselves so we could still have our holiday. Embarkation was awful. We were kept waiting in the hot sun for over an hour after the time we were told that embarkation would start. Disembarkation was equally disorganised and no one actually seemed to know anything about what was happening. We also booked a quite expensive excursion which did not materialise as to the description. Only half of the excursion took place and was cut short early. Again MSC refused to reimburse us for the portion of the excursion that did not materialise. The actual cruise was lovely. Contary to some reviews, the boat was in good condition and appeared well maintained. Our cabin was very clean and had plenty of storage. The bed was very comfortable.The cabin steward did a very good job of tidying our cabin. The food was excellent and very good service by staff. There was plenty of choices at lunch and dinner. We particularly enjoyed afternoon tea and the ice cream bar. The gym was ok but some of the machines would benefit from updating. We also enjoyed the dance lessons on deck. It was a shame that the experience was marred by awful customer service. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
I have a child and this cruise offered interesting places, at the right time, offering a kids club.. While the rooms were clean and neat and the food ok, the real downside was our noisy cabin right above a night club disco. They ... Read More
I have a child and this cruise offered interesting places, at the right time, offering a kids club.. While the rooms were clean and neat and the food ok, the real downside was our noisy cabin right above a night club disco. They were unable to move anyone and as the bass was so strong and volume so loud I tried to have the music level lowered. There was lip service paid to my complaint, however on the second night I did have an ‘audience’ with the cruise customer service manager. For that night only the music was turned down. Then the next night up again. While asking numerous times to turn it down, this did not happen. Spoilt the cruise for me entirely... ‘yes madam’ ‘yes’ and then not being heard. My child had a great time with the lovely staff at mini club. Internet service was poor. I paid a lot of money for premium internet but audio and video were not available. It ran out quickly and the fine print tells you to stop it if you don’t want your allowance to run out. Then when it didn’t work again I was pressured into paying for more.. ended up costing about 150 euros fir 5 days... felt ripped off... Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My husband and I booked this cruise Aug 28-Sept 7 - it had a great itinerary which is the only reason we chose it. We are older (64) so booked the Aurea Suite which included quite a lot and alcohol. There are so many kids on this ship, it ... Read More
My husband and I booked this cruise Aug 28-Sept 7 - it had a great itinerary which is the only reason we chose it. We are older (64) so booked the Aurea Suite which included quite a lot and alcohol. There are so many kids on this ship, it wasn't funny. I gather kids travel free. This cruise started in Florence (Livorno), worst port ever. We were supposed to get priority status with our booking, well that didn't happen. We happened to arrive at the same time as a large busload of people arrived and they did not have 2 different security checks, just one, so we ended up in line waiting - so much for priority boarding which we paid extra for. No one except those on the 11th floor were allowed to use the 12th floor deck which was exclusive to Aurea guests, which was great as kids weren't allowed up there. We were unfortunate to have booked the last room and it was close to the door leading outside, and all you heard all night was noisy guests going in and out. At 1:30 in the morning, they cleaned the decks so all you heard was the loud sound of the power washer going on and off. They also set up the chair at 5:30 in the morning so you heard the racket of them laying them down. One night at 4:30 a.m., they were moving tables and chairs from the 11th deck up to the 12th deck and throwing them up the stairs. What a racket they made. Had no regard for the customers sleeping below. That is the problem with this ship. The workers on this ship have no regard for the comfort of their guests and they should - we pay their salary. I would travel MSC, but probably get a better cabin and probably try for a newer ship. They were very nice, but this ship which is old, Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Firstly I wished I found this website before i booked!!!! Wow we have been on many a Royal Caribbean cruises in the past, but we booked this after watching a very luxurious video on MSC website. We thought that this was going to be ... Read More
Firstly I wished I found this website before i booked!!!! Wow we have been on many a Royal Caribbean cruises in the past, but we booked this after watching a very luxurious video on MSC website. We thought that this was going to be opelent, luxurious, classy and extravagant cruise seeing as that's what the video to us. Having paid alot more then we usually would, treating ourself to a jacuzzi room and we were told drinks were all in we were so excited. We were wrong our cruise company got it wrong apparently we didn't have the deluxe package for drinks of course that's started us off badly having to pay the extra €198 each. That way my husband could have a better choice of beers and I could have more options of cocktails and s baileys. What a disapointmet, yes the ship is beautiful but lacking what in my book is no1 customer service. We have never felt so unwelcome alone and miserable by the way we were treated on this ship we my husband and I couldn't wait to get off. All the staff were miserable no one would look at you or ask if you needed anything or help. There was never a good morning or evening nothing. No one is ever made to wash their hands when going into the restaurants,it's disgusting no wonder theses ships get poorly. It's a health risk. This is a must why do they no take this on. Royal Caribbean make everyone who enters resturaunts to wash their hands someone stands there. The food was boring every night in the dining room, the same food just a different flavour. The 4 nights we did eat here at golden sands we waited over 2 hours for 2 courses. Seeing as it was all luke warm or cold and waited so long we did the buffet a couple of nights this wasn't much better pizza and chips.....again samey every night too. We had a rude waiter when we asked once if someone could clear our plates because they had been sat there for half an hour we were told no... I thought he was joking actually he wasn't. I have never in all the cruises I have been on have such bad attitude, rude argumentative, unapproachable customer service like it. Including receptionist, waiting staff, bar staff pool attendants every one was the same... what is that about? why is everybody the same. It made us feel awful, the boat had no life or soul no happiness no life. Do not get excited about the formal night, was a waste of me taking my long dresses. Because actually they called it elegant night, I understand not everybody wants to get dressed up but my husband and I changed twice because thier elegant night was trainers,shorts,flipflops baseball caps and t shirts in the main dining. We were all sat so close to one another, we were on laps most of the time. Ice cream were very nice this we enjoyed for our dessert every night seeing as waiting for an ice cream in the restaurant always took 30 minutes and had melted. Except one day at the Panama pool I was put off when I saw hairs in it the coconut ice cream. The 3d simulator the bowling and zip line is at a fee, all other ships are always free when ever we've been on royal Caribbean.... wow you really should try taking your team and trying your competitors for cruising see how they do it The sun loungers are dangerous, as they kept collapsing with people on them. There's so much more to write. The very worse thing about this cruise is that before we went on this, all my family and i stupidly booked a once in a lifetime holiday cruise to Dubai and around the Emirates but it is on the spendida for December 28th. After reading reviews from that ship, on this site its like reading my own all the same thing. The terrible customer service, the awful food, even reading a cleaner using passangers toothbrushes to clean toilets!!!!! Oh my gosh I'm heartbroken as we will all lose the money if we cancel. So we have had to suck it up and still go. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because it was a new ship and looked really beautiful online. The Seaview turned out to be a magnificent ship, with great ports- Barcelona, Marseille, Genoa, Messina, Naples, and Valletta, Malta. It was also easy to ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was a new ship and looked really beautiful online. The Seaview turned out to be a magnificent ship, with great ports- Barcelona, Marseille, Genoa, Messina, Naples, and Valletta, Malta. It was also easy to navigate your way onboard. The cruise line offers ports that other cruise lines do not. The dates the cruise offered were convenient for us. Embarkation and Disembarkation went very smoothly. There were no lines. Our luggage arrived at our room shortly after were checked into out cabin. The cabin was a balcony cabin on deck 9. There was enough room in the cabin for my husband and myself. It could be tight for a family of 4. Cabins were tastefully decorated, clean, and comfortable. We ate in the dining room every evening. All other meals were eaten at the buffet restaurant. The food was average. Many items that used to be included on the menu, are offered, but you must pay extra for them. There were many packages for extras- bar, soda, water, coffee, steak, lobster,etc. The shore excursions were offered in many languages, and there were very few offered in each port. Entertainment was lacking. The show at night was 35 minutes and utilized the same group of performers every night in a different show. Entertainment during the day did not exist. There was no social director. They had a big screen tv above the panorama deck, which never had a movie playing! The shops had a poor selection of souvenirs. Handbags looked like copies. There were many children on board and they offered many activities for them. The main problem we had on this cruise was that no passengers spoke English. This was a European line and we were unaware that this would present itself as a problem. So, we met no one on this trip. All in all, this was a worthwhile cruise, but not sure if we would go on MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I am in the Baltic's for work, and had a set time to take a vacation, so my choices were limited on where and when I could go. I have been on two cruises with RCCL, one in the Mediterranean and one Caribbean some years ago. Both were ... Read More
I am in the Baltic's for work, and had a set time to take a vacation, so my choices were limited on where and when I could go. I have been on two cruises with RCCL, one in the Mediterranean and one Caribbean some years ago. Both were really nice experiences. I was going to book on the Symphony of the Seas, but wow, they are getting very pricey. I stumbled online across the not yet finished MSC Seaside. I knew nothing about MSC Cruise lines so I did a lot of research and found many negative comments and some excellent ones. The dates worked out so I took the chance and booked my cruise on the Seaview, purchasing an interior cabin on the 10th deck. I purchased a welcome bottle of prosecco and the All inclusive drink package. I found MSC's website a tad confusing and lacking on detailed information. After much reading on this site it made things somewhat more clear. I had even conflicting information when I called the company! I was nervous about going on a new ship (possible delays, mechanical issues etc) and on a new line for me. After reading so many posts about MSC and the Yacht Club, I upgraded to the Yacht Club Interior Accessible cabin, 18033. They cancelled and refunded my prosecco and drink package as YC comes with the All Inclusive Deluxe package (very confusing as MSC told me on the phone it was a different package). My heart crashed when I read online that the ship delivery was being delayed, but thankfully for me it was only the first cruise that was effected. I was on the second. The big day arrived and I was so excited. I arrived in Messina from Catania by train and walked to the port, which was not far, but wow it was hot! I was so VERY disappointed that the port of Messina would not even allow us to go into the terminal to wait to board! There was everyone waiting to board sitting on their luggage on the sidewalk in the very hot sun, looking like a bunch of refugees! I had to wait for about 2 hours and it was getting so hot it was very uncomfortable. I went to the cafe immediately across the road, which was not yet open and thankfully there were some table and seats under the umbrellas. I knew the port terminal was not the biggest or fanciest but not to let people in was totally unacceptable. It was open for passengers disembarking or going of ship to sight see. Once they finally decided to let the mass into the terminal, I saw a member of the Yacht Club with a sign. Once we met, I was embarked quite quickly. One note, I have to say that the MSC Seaside security team were the most professional I have seen! Great work and kudos to them for what they do to keep us safe! The butler escorted me (the long way as he got slightly lost) to the YC concierge desk and they introduced themselves and explained how things work and what was available etc. First impressions after the terminal fiasco were amazing! Such a beautiful ship! The cabin was beautiful and very well appointed. Many upgrades such as a welcome bottle of prosseco and fresh fruit waiting. The cabin for the most part was perfect. Only issues was the closet is tight for space, and the plugs, Euro 220v and North American 110v plugs, 2 of each are very close and if you use an adapter it blocks the 2nd plug. There are also USB plugs as well. The other tiny issues were the toilet was a bit picky to get to flush and the shower water temperature went up and down as you showered. I'm guessing new ship issues. The cabin was kept very well and the staff were very friendly and professional. The phones in YC cabins are amazing high quality phones that even have video chat available! I ate breakfast and dinner in the YC Top Sail restaurant every day, except one night I ate in the Butchers Cut Steak restaurant. The service was excellent, and the food very good. No complaints, however I found that the YC kitchen didn't go quite as far for the above and beyond as i have heard from other reviews on this site, but it was still very good. The YC Lounge provided a very relaxing atmosphere with excellent live music and top notch service! Went to the buffets on decks 8 and 16 for a few snacks and the food was good but the areas can get VERY busy at times! The gelato was soo nice! The bars were excellent and service as great. Sometimes the bartenders were slammed with orders but worked so well and as fast as they could. I hate to do this, as the service was excellent in all the bars I went to, but I have to say an extra thank you for the above and beyond service I received from Anna and the others in the Champagne bar! They went the extra mile and made for VERY memorable times! The shows I thought were short but well done, but they do not use musicians, but recorded music and did recycle some acts and props between shows but they were still entertaining. Make sure to make a reservation! This is easily done using the cabin TV, the stations all over the ship or the MSC For Me app, which for the most part worked very well. Couple of times it got a little out of sorts, but not a big deal. As YC I had free access to the Thermal area of the spa! What a wonderful and very relaxing getaway! The only issues was an alarm kept going off, another tiny new ship issue which I hope they fix soon, and one thing that did annoy me a bit, is how loud some of the people in the spa were. Just a cultural thing, but perhaps they should put up a sign or something to remind them to just be more quiet. The pool and whirlpools in the YC were wonderful and quiet and the others were good but did get quite busy at times, which is to be expected on a ship this size. I was blown away on how well they engineered all the deck space outside which gave lots of room to lay outside or eat at the tables. One weird thing I did notice is there are no garbage receptacles to be found and sometimes you had to go the distance to get rid of garbage. The zip line was fun but not something I would do too many times. The water slides were fun as well, and children seemed to enjoy the water park! I did love the Formula one simulator, but twice the experience was messed up when Captain Scala made one of his many multi language announcements. Normally i wouldn't mind, put when you are paying 10 Euro for 5 minutes, I expect the full experience uninterrupted. The bridge should let the arcade know when they are going to make an announcement so we can wait till after they are done to race! The bridge of Sighs is very nice and the aft elevators offer an amazing ocean view. I booked my shore excursions before my cruise and there was some minor issues booking, and they cancelled my excursion in Barcelona at the last minute (well after supper the night before) due to not enough people. I was disappointed to say the least as it was the one I was looking forward to the most. These things happen but I wish I had more time as I would have found a way to go on my own. I also found that in the Yacht Club you don't know your meeting time till very late at night, and couple of times I had to go to the concierge desk to ask, so I wouldn't miss my timings. The excursions I did go on were well done and I was happy with them. One funny thing, I read about on this site was how Yacht Club members can hijack the elevators, and all the issues that go with it. Well that didn't seem to be an issue at all on my cruise. MSC has signs on one fore elevator, port and starboard stating priority for YC members. People, including myself did use the service and there were no complaints. Some people thought this was funny and challenged us to elevator races! The only thing that I think that could have been better is the mandatory safety briefings held in the muster assembly area. They seemed a tad disorganized and some people didn't pay attention at all. Some muster areas are in the arcade area and had people walking right trough and making noise during the briefing. Passengers and MSC should put more effort into safety as when(god forbid) things do go bad it's too late to try to learn! All in all, I had a very positive first experience with MSC Cruises. The Seaview is an amazing beautiful and steady ship and her master, Captain Scala was very approachable and ran a very good ship. many of the employees were very happy to be on the Seaview and under his command. There were a few minor things, but nothing is perfect. I had an excellent vacation, which went far too quickly. I would have no issues recommending this cruise and would love to do it again if the chance were ever to arise again. I am very happy I paid the difference and upgraded to Yacht Club, as it is like a ship within a ship. When the masses got a bit much, I just went to the YC area and relaxed. Thanks to all who worked so hard to give me a great vacation! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly, but probably because people were getting on/off in different ports. Our cabin was ready by 11.30. We had someone elses luggage delivered to our cabin. Sorted out fairly quickly. Cabin was ... Read More
Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly, but probably because people were getting on/off in different ports. Our cabin was ready by 11.30. We had someone elses luggage delivered to our cabin. Sorted out fairly quickly. Cabin was clean and our steward was friendly and efficient. The public areas were quite nice. Quite crowded in the evening. The food was of very poor quality and very disappointing. Service in the self service restaurant and lunch time in the restaurant on deck 5 was terrible. The staff were not interested in the guests and stood about chatting between themselves. Service and meals in the evening were thankfully much better. Our two waiters were excellent! Always checking on us and topping up our glasses. We paid the extra to have lobster on the Gala night (Marseille) and T bone steak on the elegant evening on our last night. These were very good. Portion sizes are or the small size, but we ordered more dishes. The shows were ok, kept us entertained for 30 mins. To be fair, with there being so many different nationalities onboard it must be difficult to keep all of them happy. The casino is very small and there is a small bar. The drinks weren’t as nice as we’ve experienced on other ships either. You can only order what’s on the bar list..we’d asked for Manhattans but they couldn’t make us one. This was our first Med cruise. We prefer sailing from Miami and cruising with with English speaking guests, really makes all the difference. wouldnt cruise with MSC again in the Med. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
I had read a lot of bad reviews and was a bit worried if our so much wanted cruise would be as exciting as we anticipated. Yes, it was. Let me first note that we were first time cruisers. Joined Meraviglia from Naples, Italy. The ... Read More
I had read a lot of bad reviews and was a bit worried if our so much wanted cruise would be as exciting as we anticipated. Yes, it was. Let me first note that we were first time cruisers. Joined Meraviglia from Naples, Italy. The embarkation was a bit frustrating as there were no clear signs where is the drop of luggage section - it appeared to be in the other wing of the port. Then we waited a long line with no seating options. Once we gave our suitcase we were assigned a number which meant we had to spend a few more hours in the waiting area. Of course we used the time to explore out and about, but in general the embarkation was very exhausting experience. Once we got aboard we were met by the kids club staff who put a wristband to our 5yo so he could be easily tracked and signed at different activities. There was no other kind of welcome on board. We had to find our own way to the elevators and cabin. Not that we didn't manage but it was somehow annoying. I don't know how it is organized on the other ships- here we felt a bit like dropped in the deep. Cabin- Apart from that first experience the rest was fantastic. We got newsletters every night so we would know what the schedule for the next day was. the cabin- inside on Deck 13- there was enough room for all 3 of us- 2 Adults 1 child. We had 2 wardrobes, a good size bed, the kid's bunk bed was also a good size- he enjoyed going up and down the ladder. The bathroom was bigger than expected. Very good ventilation system- our swimsuits and small washing dried up very quickly. The TV in the cabin was showing screens from two of the ship's cameras so we felt like we had a window- this was the first thing in the morning- switch on the TV to see where we are. The cabin steward was a nice guy- these people work so hard from dusk to down and even more. We would get up very early in the morning- he's seen in the corridor, going back to the cabin past 10pm- he's still folding towels. One day I pushed the DND button just to give him some rest. The policy of tiding up cabin 2 times a day is a bit too much for me. Dining- We ate dinner 3 times in the restaurant and the rest in the buffet. The restaurant was nice - Olive D'Doro on deck 6. The waiters, the atmosphere, the tables layout- fantastic. The food- delicious but minor portions. Even if you eat lunch at the port, you get back to the ship at around 4:30-5pm (5:30 is all aboard time) so you need some snack to bite. Go up to the buffet- mainly hot dogs and hamburgers. OK wait for dinner, already starving eat a small portion of food and then end up in the buffet again. And actually we enjoyed the buffet food at the proper meals times. Big variety of salads, meat, pasta, bread, vegetables, desserts- everything for everybody. Entertainment- Fantastic shows, we saw 4 shows and Cirque Du Soleil. From the regular shows we enjoyed Way and Paz the most. The kids club is also a very well organized. There's entertainment for the kids all the time. The girls take them not only in the play areas but for some movies down in the theater, for games in the sports zone, there are constantly some activities for the kids. Also there is fun dinner time in the buffet, so you can dine in the restaurant or in the buffet and they will entertain and feed your child. Unfortunately among all the variety of food in the buffet they feed the kids hamburgers and fires - even my 5yo said it's not healthy food and didn't want to eat with them the following days, although he enjoyed the rest of the daily program. We couldn't attend any of the dancing classes, Master Chef or other entertainment as we were too tired from the onshore exploring, but we were very impressed by the variety of activities offered. Even if we had 7 days at sea there would be something new to everyday. The musicians were all fantastic. I can't say a bad word for the entertainment- just fantastic! We were very happy with the pools- all with warm water even the outdoor one. The jacuzzys were also very pleasant (quite packed most of the time though). I only missed a changing room at the pool area. We got a bit cold as we had to walk in wet towels back to the cabin and even though we were inside we could still feel some some air drаught. Service- all in all we were very happy with everybody. Yes, some of the staff seemed tired, but they were never rude. We are please with the interactive info screens and the mobile app. We did not have the need to visit reception. Although the lack of the human touch in communication felt a bit like a 'self-service-luxury'. Ports- we enjoyed all the ports. The only con was in Marseille where the ship docks really far from the center and if you want to use the free port shuttle you have to walk over a kilometer through the windy port, then wait 20 min for the shuttle, then travel over 15min to get to a transport hub. It's so much waste of time. Of course there is a transfer from the ship which is approx Eur12.00 per adult. Having in mind it was 3 of us- we would had to spend more than Eur30.00 just to reach to the city. Drink package- We are not big drinkers so we only bought prepaid vouchers for caffeine drinks and soft drinks. They were absolutely enough. At dinner we bought water from the restaurant (approx Eur3,00 for a 1l bottle). In the buffet there was free water and juice. We ordered a glass of wine once or twice and it was absolutely enough for us. Even if we had a full drinks package I don't know if we'd drink more. There's simply no time for it. In the morning you have free coffee and juice in the buffet, then spend the whole day onshore, get back in the late afternoon, have a refreshing shower and get ready for dinner, then dine, watch a show and eventually spend some more time on the top deck to enjoy the nice breeze and that's all- time for bed. All in all it was a great experience for us. And we would definitely go again! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
MSC Meraviglia – 13th to 20th November – Naples to Civitavecchia Background We had booked this cruise for a number of reasons, the first being that even though we have visited the majority of ports on the Western Med circuit we ... Read More
MSC Meraviglia – 13th to 20th November – Naples to Civitavecchia Background We had booked this cruise for a number of reasons, the first being that even though we have visited the majority of ports on the Western Med circuit we had never visited Naples. Knowing that we would like to see Pompeii, Herculaneum, Sorrento and some of the other main attractions, this itinerary meant we could spend a few days in Naples before the start of the cruise and tick these destinations off our lists. The other reason for booking the cruise was to experience what the latest flagship of the MSC fleet had to offer. Being launched earlier in 2017, MSC Meraviglia was billed as the most technologically advanced ship at sea. Since this cruise, MSC have launched another new ship, MSC Seaside, as part of their impressive expansion plans. Seaside and Meraviglia are completely different ships, with the design being poles apart. Meraviglia was built by STX France and Seaside by Fincantieri. Seaside focuses on getting guests ‘closer to the sea’ and is the ship that follows the sun, whereas Meraviglia is billed as the ship for all seasons. As I’m yet to sail on Seaside and can only comment on what I’ve seen on the Internet, I’ll refrain from any more comments or comparisons between these two ships. Embarkation Boarding at Naples was convenient, with the cruise terminal having decent facilities and a short and inexpensive taxi ride from our hotel helped us to relax. The signage within the terminal could have been better – luggage needed to be dropped off in one side of the terminal, with check-in / boarding being completed in the other. This could have been confusing had we not sought assistance early on. As we are Black Card members of the Voyagers club we were able to take advantage of the priority boarding – this meant that as soon as the Yacht Club passengers had been taken through security we were able to sail through the crowds. We were given our cruise cards at check in – on recent cruises the cards had been waiting in the cabin. Accommodation Once aboard we went to find our cabin, a Fantastica balcony, 14153. We had not fully appreciated on paper just how much bigger than the Fantasia class ships Meraviglia is, with extra corridors and inside cabins it would certainly take some time to get used to the layout. MSC Cabins are priced on cabin type (inside, outside, balcony, suite etc) and experience type (Bella, Fantastica, Wellness, Aurea, Yacht Club). Each experience type offers different perks. We tend to always choose Fantastica as the cabins are generally in a better location (mid-ships) preference of dining time (although not guaranteed), continental breakfast room service. The cabin itself was up to the usual MSC standard. It was spotless. It did feel perhaps a little smaller than some of the cabins we have stayed in, but still plenty big enough for two people for a week’s cruise. Storage space appears perhaps a little lacking as there are only two drawers, however suitcases fit under the bed, there is an extra rail in the wardrobe that folds down to provide extra hanging space. Lifejackets are also now stored at the muster station rather than in the cabin which again frees up some space. Our cases were soon delivered and we unpacked; alas there was still room for more clothes. To our delight the cabin also had a bath with glass shower screen; the bath was particularly nice when coming back to the ship on cooler days; great for relaxing with a glass of wine whilst getting ready for dinner! The Ship As our boarding time was 2pm, we had missed lunch, so it was off up to Deck 15 to have a look at the Market Place buffet. The buffet is simply huge! There are so many different stations including carvery, rotisserie and oriental, as well as the usual pizzas and salads. Following lunch, it was off to explore round the ship, with our first stop being The Horizon bar – an adults only area at the stern of the ship on Deck 18. This reminded me a little of NCL Epic’s Spice H2o area, only it was more spacious with a much more open feel. There were plenty of sunbeds in the staged amphitheatre area, a decent sized plunge pool and a large hot tub. We finished our glasses of champagne (Nicholas Feuillatte) which was included in our premium drinks package, which offers excellent value at £36 per day for unlimited consumption of alcoholic beverages, items in the mini bar and room service – there are very few exclusions to the package, with only some super-premium single malts, Beluga Vodka and Zacapa Rum being the main ones. Back inside and to the Edge cocktail bar on Deck 6. We were delighted to meet up with Francisco, a bar tender who remembered us from our very first cruise, and he was also very pleased to see us. From The Edge bar, it is impossible not to be wowed by the sheer size of Meraviglia; you really get a feel as to how wide the ship is, and how long she is with a spectacular view down the central promenade “Galleria Meraviglia” Meraviglia boasts the longest LED dome at sea and WOW what an impression it made! The domed ceiling is the focal point of the central promenade, with the LED screen used to show a variety of vistas, from fireworks in London, Paris, Sydney, famous ceilings of the world, ‘under the sea’, in to space, dinosaurs… Along the promenade are the speciality restaurants, the TV studio / comedy club, the chocolate shop and the Meraviglia lounge, which generally hosted the animation team’s evening games and dances. Dining One of the reasons many people decide to book cruise holidays is the reputation that cruising has for providing plentiful high quality food. On various review sites MSC seem to take a beating over the food provided in the main dining rooms, with writers suggesting the food is not good. Let me just say: Food is subjective. What I mean by this is that what suits the taste of one person may be completely against what others feel. I like to think of myself as a good cook and am somewhat a foodie. For me, the food on MSC is varied and well executed. Being a company of Italian heritage, it should come as no surprise that Italian cuisine has a heavy influence on the menu. Personally I found the food to be of a good standard and with a varied menu. The menu choices have been pared down since I first started cruising with MSC; there are now fewer options for each course and seemingly a push towards a three course dining experience. Portion sizes are adequate, and it is never an issue to have more courses – my partner and I quite often had four or five courses, as we love to try the different options available. We were assigned ‘My Choice’ dining in the Panorama restaurant and were waited on by Marcello and his team. They were knowledgeable about themenu and offered advice on wine pairings from the list of wines by the glass included in our package. Highlights of food throughout the week include the sparkling wine risotto and fillet of beef in marsala wine sauce on the first elegant night, the seafood mixed grill served on the Med night was also very well presented, consisting of a whole king prawn, swordfish and cuttlefish. Speciality Dining Traditionally, MSC have not had numerous speciality restaurants. For example, Fantasia and Splendida have just the Tex Mex / Steakhouse, Divina and Preziosa Eataly / steakhouse. Meraviglia is almost a break from this tradition with several options over and above the main dining room. These include a Teppan Yaki and sushi restaurant, a steakhouse, Italian, a British pub. With these choices, in addition to the assigned dining room and buffet options it is impossible not to find something of interest. As we are both Black Card holders in MSC’s Voyagers club, a perk is a meal for two in a speciality restaurant. We had decided to take one of these meals in the Kyoto Teppan Yaki and the other in the Butchers Cut steakhouse. The in-cabin TV and the MSC for me app now enables passengers to view the menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. As such we checked out whether we would really enjoy the dinner menu ahead of making reservations in another restaurant. On the second night of the cruise we decided to take our first complimentary meal in the speciality dining and were able to secure a table for 7.30pm. Paul, our chef for the evening was great fun – making a real show out of the whole experience. The complimentary Black Card menu was the ‘Emperor’ selection, which would usually cost €28 per head. It consisted of delights such as sushi, miso soup, fried rice, salmon and steak. The whole experience resulted in a synergy that in my opinion exceeded our expectations. We enjoyed the experience so much we decided that we would take our second complimentary meal in the Teppan Yaki Paul was delighted to see us again when we joined him a couple of nights later for another meal! Entertainment For those who have heard of MSC before, it will come as no surprise that there are a number of nationalities onboard, and therefore multiple languages are spoken. English is always the first language, then Italian followed by French, German, Spanish etc. Announcements are therefore limited compared to other cruise lines which seem to constantly have the cruise director on the Tannoy advising passengers of activities going on around the ship. Just because the announcements aren’t there that doesn’t mean that these activities don’t happen. The daily programme is delivered to the cabin in the evening. The MSC for Me app and the interactive screens around the ship give information about what is happening, where and when. Everyday during the cruise there was a quiz of some description, multiple games, dance lessons, and even Master Chef at Sea! MSC have partnered up with the TV programme to bring something different to their cruises. To qualify, contestants must take part in a quiz. The top scoring individuals are then chosen to take part in the live show in the theatre. I was lucky enough to be chosen and was paired up with another contestant from Portugal. It was certainly an experience and quite nerve wracking to try and prepare something tasty and well presented in front of a crowd of 700 using the following ingredients: galia melon, honeydew melon, watermelon, strawberries, feta cheese, balsamic vingar, olive oil, salt and pepper… By a sheer miracle we won and came away with various MSC and Masterchef branded goodies! On Meraviglia, MSC have teamed up with Cirque du Soleil who perform two different shows. Unfortunately, for much of our sailing there was an issue with some of the equipment in the Carousel Lounge – the special area deck 7 aft beyond the casino dedicated to these performances. This unfortunate issue meant that there were no shows until our penultimate night. We managed to secure two seats for the final night of our cruise to see the Sonor show. The show was absolutely excellent. We’d pre-booked our show and cocktail ticket online so we were really glad we managed to get to see Cirque. It is almost impossible to describe the show other than breath-taking. The comfortable and well-designed lounge with excellent views of the stage even from near the back, the amazing acoustics, wonderful costumes and of course the excellent artists. There are also three theatre shows per night, of two different shows, which allows passengers to perhaps see something they might have missed. We attended the Opera based around La Boheme which was very good indeed, with live opera singers. Conclusion There is far more to Meraviglia than I have mentioned so far – so many bars and lounges, waterslides, simulators, night clubs, sports parks – it would take weeks to write anything further in detail on all these aspects. We were certainly wowed by the ship and can see why she is the eighth wonder of the world. During our week onboard we were made to feel like celebrities; so many of the crew recognized us from previous cruises and were genuinely pleased to see us. Nothing was ever too much trouble. My only criticism would be that there did seem to be a lack of seating on occasion. This wouldn’t normally be much of an issue for us, however my partner is recovering from a broken ankle. It was always possible to find somewhere to sit by moving to a different bar or lounge, however this could be inconvenient when wanting to listen to a certain act. I’m confident that there is something for everyone on this ship and that she is a real game changer. For the moment though MSC Fantasia will still remain my favourite and hold a very special piece of my heart having spent so long on her and her sister Splendida. Being that bit smaller than Meraviglia Fantasia has all of the facilities of a big ship but offers the familiarity of a well-loved holiday home. Would I sail on Meraviglia again? Yes, I would, but possibly only for a week or ten days – the ship has so much going on it’s impossible to ignore the multitude of activities and attractions and just ‘switch off’ and relax. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
The year before our family went on MSC Armonia for our first cruise. The ship was full but it didn't feel crowded and the food wasn't fantastic but we enjoyed it, esp the pizzas. The entertainment was good. Overall we enjoyed it. ... Read More
The year before our family went on MSC Armonia for our first cruise. The ship was full but it didn't feel crowded and the food wasn't fantastic but we enjoyed it, esp the pizzas. The entertainment was good. Overall we enjoyed it. So when we heard about MSC's new and biggest ship we thought it would be very special and much better than the one we went on so we booked it. We waited for hours to get on board the Meraviglia. It was so disorganised that every 10-15 metres or so a staff would be checking our documents, the same thing that was done 5 times before. We waited for 3-4 hours before getting on board. It was ridiculous. The room was small and cramp. The beddings were inadequate. The duvet they gave us was thick and hot, so we asked for another but we were told that was all they had so we had to use our beach towels as blanket. Even though the ship was brand new, the mattress were sinking in the middle and it was very uncomfortable to sleep on. The room service was poor and the staff generally tried their best to avoid being called: either in the dining room or to make up the rooms. In the dining room there were piles of plates on the table and lots of mess and no one to clear it up. There seemed to be very few staff about and they generally did their best to avoid working which would inundate them. It was really hard to get their attention or even to find one. The worse thing was the food: the buffet opening hours were really limited and there were hardly any food to choose from. It was the same food meals after meals and we felt they simply re-used the leftovers for the next meals. The portions in the restaurants were so tiny that they would have satisfied ants, let alone people. They advertised Cirque De Soleil on sea but they charged a hefty price and the queue was hours long. The only times we had half decent food was in the paid restaurants. The buffets were not fit to serve refugees. We were so glad to get home and was traumatised by the experience and never will we go with any of the MSC fleet again, ever! Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
For my next travel we will chose another dates because we don't want to travel in a ship where there are a lot of children whose parents don't look after them. Jacuzzis with children jumping, children arguing, running without ... Read More
For my next travel we will chose another dates because we don't want to travel in a ship where there are a lot of children whose parents don't look after them. Jacuzzis with children jumping, children arguing, running without education. We don't like the places that MSC goes, for example Marsella!!!! I prefer Villefrance or Niza. Napoles is a dirty city and If you have been in Napoles and You have visited Pompeya the second time that you go to Napoles isn't good. The Meraviglia is incredible. An excelent service in the restaurant by dinner with Sihuare. We have looked other MSC ships but we don't like the ports that MSC travels, in Caribian I prefer the Pullmantur round (Cartagena de Indias, Panama) we don't visit a lot of islands without history and we want to visit monumental cities. Msc is an Italian company and you know this is an Italian Company all the time. When you can talk with a Spanish service is good. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Beautiful ports of call. Excellent service. Stateroom was the best ive been on. 10007. Only 10 like it on ship. Corner deck with jacuzzi. Suite. 2 sliders on deck. Food was excellant. Very different embarcation, almost lik e a hop on, ... Read More
Beautiful ports of call. Excellent service. Stateroom was the best ive been on. 10007. Only 10 like it on ship. Corner deck with jacuzzi. Suite. 2 sliders on deck. Food was excellant. Very different embarcation, almost lik e a hop on, hop off. Not all passengers embark and disembark at one port. We embarked in Naples, a bit confusing and inconvienent. I suggest Genoa. Reviews prior were very negative. I felt i neede to post a positive review. Would book again and highly reccommend. We were a group of 10. Booked our own excursions for a better price. Highlights in Taormina, Provence and Santa Margherita. Bring Euros. Ship charges a significant fee and not too many atms in ports of call. Yacht club was extra special offering a more luxurious experience, worth thr extra charge.Butchers cut steakhouse was the best steak i have ever had...anywhere. Other speciality restaurants were just ok. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
The only good thing about this experience was the ship, it is new. that is it. The entertainment is a joke, the food is horrible, they nickel and dime you, you have to even pay for water. They recently changed it for American market to ... Read More
The only good thing about this experience was the ship, it is new. that is it. The entertainment is a joke, the food is horrible, they nickel and dime you, you have to even pay for water. They recently changed it for American market to which water is free. Watch out for $10 a day per person for service charge. They do not tell you unless you asked for the bill. Are you kidding me? Stay away from this cruise line. They also have restaurant to which you can pay for. We tried them as well. The food was marginal at best. The security crew to allow you to get out of the ship and back are not at all friendly. When you get into the ship, you will be harassed with a lot of sales people to sell you drink packages, spa packages, and other. Don't buy it since it is not worth anything. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017

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