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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We got a great deal on this cruise so we took it. Had never used MSC although we have cruised many times. WAY too big for us. 7,000 passengers and crew on this mega-ship! Hard to find places to sit outside, especially at the pools, ... Read More
We got a great deal on this cruise so we took it. Had never used MSC although we have cruised many times. WAY too big for us. 7,000 passengers and crew on this mega-ship! Hard to find places to sit outside, especially at the pools, elbowing people thru the buffet dining areas to get to the food, extremely long lines for all group activities (with many rude, pushy people cutting in line left and right!), lots of children running around. It was bedlam, nothing relaxing about this ship. We were on one of the upper decks at the rear of the ship so there was a constant rolling and shuddering movement in our stateroom. We were underneath the large pool so we could hear EVERYTHING being said and played on the loudspeakers up there, from morning bingo to the evening dance parties. No relaxing glasses of wine on our balcony this trip; too noisy! On the positive side, the service was very good and the food was excellent. Lessons learned for us- no more cruises on mega-ships, and be sure the cabin is mid-ship on a lower deck nowhere near the pool! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose this cruise for many reasons: dates, ports, ship offerings and price. There were 4 in our party (2 adults, 2 kids ages 13 & 10). We stayed in a Balcony cabin on Deck 14 mid-ship. The ship is beautiful and there are lots of ... Read More
I chose this cruise for many reasons: dates, ports, ship offerings and price. There were 4 in our party (2 adults, 2 kids ages 13 & 10). We stayed in a Balcony cabin on Deck 14 mid-ship. The ship is beautiful and there are lots of things to do on it. Nobody should have had a reason to be bored on this cruise. The website photos and video are a true representation of what we saw and experienced on our trip. We are pretty easy travelers. We like clean, comfortable sleeping quarters, good food, and drinks in our hands. We also like there to be answers to our questions should we have some. MSC did a great job with the clean, comfortable sleeping quarters and good food. Where they lacked was bar service and communication. We rarely had a drink in our hands. The bars were greatly understaffed for the number of guests on board and the size of the drink menu. Also, if you dine in the main dining rooms, prepare yourself for water and wine. There were a few evenings we placed orders for soda, beer and mixed drinks but they never arrived. Many bartenders could not understand a drink as simple as a 7 and 7, a screwdriver, etc. A couple of times we tried to explain what was in it and they brought us only what they understood. Pool towels are provided in your cabin. There is 1 towel exchange and it is on Deck 16. It closes at 5:00 each day. The last pool closes at 10:00pm. Our cabin did not have pool towels and the towel exchange attendant couldn't understand that we had no towels to exchange because we had no towels to begin with. This went on for 2 days. On Day 2 I finally got firm and used as few words as possible to express that we have no towels. He handed me 2 towels, wrote my cabin number down and told me to have them back by 5:00 or we would be charged $20/towel. On Sea days we never found an available pool chair prior to 6:00pm. There were many chairs without people in them but people were saving them in case they came back later. Jungle Pool was open until 10:00pm but the bar alongside it closed at 6:00pm. To get drinks of any kind after that, you had to go to another deck and wait. Guest Services was not easy to communicate with as English was not the first or a fluent language for many of them. We were told 4 different ways by 4 different reps how to place an external phone call to the US. We finally had them dial for us. I had 2 other questions and they responded by handing me instruction sheets to answer my questions. We enjoyed our excursions. We felt the port stops were too short with the exception of St. Thomas. That was a full day stop. There were few Americans on this cruise. It was difficult to meet and visit with people because of that, especially for the kids. We finally stopped trying to initiate conversation and only initiated conversation if we could hear them speak English. We spoke to some English-speaking Amercian and Canadian guests we met along the way. We all shared the same opinion: beautiful ship and good food but the bar service and communication barrier prevented it from being a really great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This was a cruise of firsts for us, the trip was to celebrate our first anniversary, it was our first time cruising with MSC, our first time in Yacht Club, and our first time in the Royal suite. This cruise was beyond fabulous. The ... Read More
This was a cruise of firsts for us, the trip was to celebrate our first anniversary, it was our first time cruising with MSC, our first time in Yacht Club, and our first time in the Royal suite. This cruise was beyond fabulous. The service in the yacht club is amazing, day in, day out they make sure you want for nothing. Our butler and cabin steward were amazing people. The Seaside is a gorgeous ship. It is designed very well and the decor is smart and elegant. We really enjoyed the yacht club lounge, restaurant, and one pool/grill area. Lunches at One pool are amazing, great selection of favorites and a different option at the carving station each afternoon. A perk of the Royal suite is the inclusion of a cabana on the One pool deck. We spent hours up there, protected from the sun but just steps from the pool. The pool area itself was seldom crowded. We enjoyed the food in the yacht club restaurant, loved that the menu changed each day, and we even had dinner at the Captain's table in the Ocean Cay restaurant one evening. We had amazing weather all week, just a mild sprinkle in the AM on our day in Jamaica, other than that sunny skies and favorable winds. We are not big on shows, we did go to one and we were very impressed with how talented the performers were. We hit the bowling lanes, F1 Simulator, and 4D theater which were all a lot of fun, one nit pick I have is that the hours of these amusements seem to be very limited, I wish they were open more often. Our suite was spacious and well appointed. Tons of storage, stocked mini-bar, very comfy king sized bed and an enormous balcony with Jacuzzi tub are part of this suite. The only real drawback is the lack of privacy on the balcony itself. All things considered this has to have been our most favorite cruise. Service, food, ship all top notch - we can't wait to travel on Seaside again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
• We sailed on the MSC Seaside, leaving Miami February 23rd 2019, returning to Miami March 2nd, 2019. There were 6 adults and two 10-year old children in our group. • Upon first arriving on the ship, there were tables for ... Read More
• We sailed on the MSC Seaside, leaving Miami February 23rd 2019, returning to Miami March 2nd, 2019. There were 6 adults and two 10-year old children in our group. • Upon first arriving on the ship, there were tables for registering for kids club, or so we thought. The confusion was clearly not isolated to just our family as most families with children were crowding the tables. The table placement created a huge bottleneck of all cruise guests because it was the first thing you encountered, IMMEDIATELY upon boarding. Then we discovered that we have to go to the 18th floor to actually register for kids club and even that we couldn’t do until 2pm. • The few times we actually dropped our 10 year old son at the kids club, they watched movies and played indoors. He was old enough to check himself out but not old enough for the kids club staff to take them to the Jungle Pool or other kid-friendly activities? I assumed that’s why the kid-themed pools/activities were located on the same floor? • Along those same lines, he could check himself out of kids club but not get a wrist band to get into our cabin because he was under 12. Poorly thought out. • Our cabins weren’t ready for several hours forcing us to wander around the ship with carry-on items. It’s hard to explore (and for that matter, relax) when you’re forced to carry around your family’s small luggage. Even more troubling is the amount of time it took us to get a drink during our initial embarkation. The bar at the Atrium was the first place the guests naturally flowed into and there were maybe 3 bartenders on duty? I’m looking for my first drink to kick off my week-long vacation and I have to wait to flag someone down? That whole area should’ve been filled with staff ready and willing to provide drinks. • We also waited another 30 minutes in the Customer Service line just to get wrist bands. Another 30 minutes I wasted on my vacation waiting in line for another poorly staffed area. At least the employees were helpful and friendly when we actually arrived at the counter. • There was an extreme lack of trash cans all over the ship. We can only assume this was for appearances but is insanely impractical. • The main cabin elevators were another giant waste of our time. We felt like we were constantly waiting for one, they were clearly not programmed properly. • There were not nearly enough restrooms near high traffic areas, i.e. pools, buffets, theater. As a woman, I expect to wait in line at times but not on a cruise. Even then, there were only two stalls in most of the restrooms. At the pool on deck 16, there are seats for hundreds of people but only 2 bathroom stalls in the ladies room? Many women had their children with them which made a tiny bathroom even more ridiculous. Poor planning for a family friendly ship. • One of our biggest complaints was the constant harassment for signing up for the dinner packages. Those poor staff members were EVERYWHERE. Everywhere we went, the pool, the buffets, the bars, the sitting areas, we were harassed about it, up until the last day of our trip. We were asked numerous times even while sitting in one location for a half hour. I hate to be rude because the staff was doing their job but this is just an unacceptable business practice. I don’t want a sales pitch every time I sit down for a meal or a drink. To our family, it’s the equivalent of a traveling salesman ringing our doorbell at dinner time. • Our absolute biggest complaint and the main reason we will NEVER take another MSC cruise was the service. I estimate I wasted about 8 hours cumulatively waiting at a bar to get a drink which ultimately leads me to this dismal review of MSC cruise overall. If there is one underlying theme about my whole review, it’s that YOU NEED DOUBLE THE STAFF at the very least. Deck 16 has a huge pool and movie screen, many of the family friendly daytime activities took place here. The bar to support that area should have been 3 times the size. • Deck 7 was the other incredibly disappointing area. Since the pool was adults only, that bar should have been at least 3 times the size. I might have been able to overlook the size if it was staffed properly. At all of the bars, it seemed that half of the items the staff needed to retrieve were “in the back” or they didn’t have it close at hand. • Dinner at the Seashore restaurant every evening was painful and incredibly inefficient. The two waiters we had were responsible for getting our drinks and food as well as waiting on how many other tables. Numerous evenings they took the drink orders of the half the table and then didn’t return to take the drink orders for the other half until the entrees were served. Our party included two 10-year old boys so it was frustrating when we couldn’t even get a refill of water. We were always rushing to finish our food because it took so long for the courses to come out and we were never eating the same course at the same time as others at our table. The staff was friendly but by the second night, it was hard not to take our frustrations of poor and inefficient service out on them. • Our first night aboard, my husband planned to go to the Sports Bar on level 8 and watch an ice hockey game. He was shocked to learn that they only carry ESPN 1 and 2. A sports bar that only carries two sports channels? Another giant disappointment. • The MSC for Me app stopped working two days before we disembarked which made it hard to see the daily agenda. We relied on it during the week and then suddenly it wasn’t there. • We were so disappointed overall, we requested our daily service charges be removed. I rarely write reviews but since all of the items outlined above were a common theme among other guests we met, I wanted to make sure others are aware so you can remedy some of these complaints for future guests. I wish I could get a partial refund for the amount of time wasted, poor service, and inefficiencies. The ship was beautiful and the schedule was prompt. Our particular hall staff was incredibly kind and helpful, his name was Andres and he was probably the most engaged staff member we met. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Chose this cruise for the fact it is a new ship, less expensive and unlimited drinks included. Large ship with 4,600 passengers and 1,500 crew. Several pools with plenty of shade if desired. Embarkation very smooth and able to get on board ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the fact it is a new ship, less expensive and unlimited drinks included. Large ship with 4,600 passengers and 1,500 crew. Several pools with plenty of shade if desired. Embarkation very smooth and able to get on board well before time assigned. Staff friendly and helpful. Now for the negatives. Clientele seemed to be primarily European. English speakers definitely the minority. Very rude - push by you to get to the bar to order drinks, won't let you off the elevator, etc. You end up having to be pushy and rude just to achieve what you're trying to do. Not the way you want to be especially on vacation. Bed so hard you'd probably be better sleeping on the floor. They don't have fitted sheets so as you toss and turn most the night the sheet ends up wadded up. Cabin and bathroom standard size for a cruise. Pizza in buffet was excellent which is good because most the other food not very good even in the restaurants. We didn't eat any meals in the specialty restaurants (extra charge) so can't speak to the food there. Also asked for late dining and was given 5:30 service. Tried to change but couldn't just had to show up at the time and if they had room you could get seated. We were able to be seated the times we did this. The shows do not seem to be geared to Americans and are all very similar with the exception of the Michael Jackson show which was excellent. The others were all just singing and costumes - both of which were excellent but all seemed very opera like although only one was described to be opera. Other Americans we spoke to on the cruise all seemed to make these same comments. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
About us – We are a family of 4 from the upper Midwest USA, mid-40’s with 11 and 8 yr old boys. This is my wife and I’s eighth cruise over a span of nearly 20 years… 5 taken as a couple, then a pause of about 9 years for kids, ... Read More
About us – We are a family of 4 from the upper Midwest USA, mid-40’s with 11 and 8 yr old boys. This is my wife and I’s eighth cruise over a span of nearly 20 years… 5 taken as a couple, then a pause of about 9 years for kids, now 3 with them along. Also, this is cruise line #6, having done Princess x2, RCI x2, Carnival, Disney, and NCL prior. Yacht Club deluxe suite (18013) Room was fantastic for us and our 2 boys. There was more storage space than I have ever seen, with a two-door closet for hanging (just not enough hangers, but had brought some along), a 2nd closet with half for hanging and half with drawers, bed-side stands with drawers, under-bed storage easily fit our 6 pieces of luggage, and the shelving divider between the bed and where the kids slept (full size sofa sleeper with murphy bed above) for things like sunscreen, electronics, and packing cubes we brought along. I also very much liked our room location up on 18 – a straight shot to the jungle pool area, the waterslides, kids club, and YC restaurant, and just up a flight of stairs to the YC pool area or down a flight to the YC lounge. We had really no noise from above (YC pool area). Since the deck under – 16 – is not a through-deck as it runs into the specialty restaurants, I preferred everything about the 18th floor. The ship LOVED the Seaside! The use of chrome and mirrors on walls and ceilings made passageways feel larger and more open, plus the overall feel was very modern. I also feel that the amount pool area, spas, and deck space was better than like-sized vessels. Not even counting the YC pool area, since we didn’t visit it all that often, having the jungle pool, the aqua park area/splash pool, Miami Beach pool, and South Beach pools really spread out the crowd well. Also enjoyed the 4-floor atrium area with all the assorted bars in the vicinity; a nice place to people-watch, and catch some of the entertainment acts. Very seldom did it feel crowded – other than breakfast at the main buffet. Activities/Entertainment Waterpark – The tube slide was pretty fun, though it probably was more fun with the mats that it was designed for. The tube line was usually a bit too longer for us in relation to the actual amount of fun that it was – and it surely could benefit a bit with better signage, as the queue breaks into two for double and single tubes without that being marked, and with lots of people who do not understand each other, it can get a little chaotic. The racing body slides were probably my favorite, as they were plenty long, smooth, and fast to be enjoyable, plus the lines were never bad and moved quickly. The last slide – the brown, open slide, was also decent for less adventurous, though it was also a plenty long and twisting ride. Zip-line – Just the novelty of it was worth trying. We’ve done enough traditional jungle zip-lining, so in comparison, this was not tall, long, or fast. But still a unique ship-board experience. Arcade area – as with my zip-line comment, being able to bowl on a ship is more about the novelty of being able to. Otherwise, it’s probably not really worth what they charge, even though we enjoyed doing it. We did 2 of the XD Cinema rides – werewolves and zombies. They were ok. A couple of the 3D jump-out-at-you moments were a bit intense/scary for the 8 yr old. My 11-yr-old did the F1 simulator, and had a good time, but found it a bit difficult to keep on-road. Spa – as a YC perk, we had to carve out time to see what the spa was about. We are too on-the-go to do spa, but hearing how great the Seaside’s was, we visited for about an hour on our last sea day just to give everything a quick try. They really do have the hot/cold theme going with snow room to saunas, to cold/hot alternating geyser station. We gave everything except the salt room (it was full) a 5-minute try. While I can see this being a great way to spend some quality relaxation time, for us it wasn’t really the ‘wow, we’ve got to come back here’ kind of place. But chalk that up to mostly just too much to do and not enough time! Theater shows – We went to all 7 nights’ shows. The best part to me was the length – mostly right at 30 minutes, though a couple may have gone 5 or 10 minutes longer. Many acts incorporated (and repeated in other shows) that are similar to the ‘America’s Got Talent’ type show – juggling, pair roller skating, magic, strength and flexibility – mixed in with the Broadway-style show song and dance numbers, and generally impressive costuming. As mentioned plenty in reviews, there’s not much of a plot-line anywhere. Least favorite by a mile was ‘My Life in Music’ as it was less of the acts and mostly singing, and songs I didn’t care for at that. On the opposite end was the Michael Jackson show ‘Starwalker’ on the last evening. I grew up in the MTV era, and always have enjoyed Michael’s dance moves, as well as the more iconic songs from the 80’s, so I thought this show was amazing! It even included my #1 favorite of his – the anti-gravity lean in Smooth Criminal. Dining We ate YC breakfast once at the outdoor buffet and found it just too limiting for us and the kids; plus it had pretty much the exact same things every day. The remainder of the time, we hit the main buffet for breakfast, which was a bit chaotic, but great choices. When not off the ship at port, we had a couple lunches at the YC grill area or the main buffet. Again, the YC was limited but good, and the buffet had good options – enjoyed the pasta selections. For dinner, we ate at YC restaurant 4 evenings and very much enjoyed each meal there. However, due to the length of time required for that (and more of a feeling of obligation to dress a bit nicer), we opted for buffet dinner the other nights. Ports/itinerary: Generally enjoyed the itinerary, even though we’ve seemingly done these ports to death. Jamaica – this go-around, we went to the Blue Hole followed by river rafting through Dr Fun,which we lined up ourselves. The Blue Hole was amazing! Grand Cayman Island – probably my least favorite port. I can’t stand the tender process. But we made a beach day out of at 7-mile-beach. Busy, but a hot, sunny day at the ocean… that’s a good day. Cozumel – We returned to Paradise Beach. We love that it has about everything we want individually… nice spot to lay in the sun with great bar service, decent beach for the kids, the inflatables to play on, the biggest and nicest pool (the water is warm, which makes my wife happy), tasty food – our discussion that day ended with a ‘wouldn’t mind just coming back here every Cozumel visit’. Nassau- the downside was the early departure time of 3:30, because we like to visit the Atlantis waterpark. Even so, we made the most of it and enjoyed our 5 hours there. Mostly spent on a tube on the rapid river! Summary: We LOVED our week aboard the Seaside. A year ago, we did an NCL Getaway cruise, and we had the best vacation ever with a fabulous time on the ship and great port activities – I said it was nearly unable to be topped. Well, this one gave a pretty good run for that title, though throwing in the Yacht Club experience gives a slightly unfair comparison to our typical balcony stateroom cruise. Only, we just didn’t utilize the Yacht Club aspects all that much, with all the time spent off at ports, doing family activities onboard, etc, so perhaps not as unfair a comparison as if we had stayed in the relatively secluded confines of Yacht Club. I will probably score this one a very high 9 out of 10. Random thoughts: - TOO MUCH TO SEE AND DO! We did get off at all four ports, went to every nightly show, had lots of pictures taken with the digital package purchased, and tried to get in plenty of waterpark, arcade, zip-lining, etc…. just wanted to at least sample as much as we could, and there just isn’t time in 7 days to get it all in (and take just a few hours to actually sit and relax). Not a complaint at all. Really more of a compliment that I would have loved spending another week. - Biggest waste of space headscratcher to me was the Bistro-le-boheme area of Deck 8. With all the times passing through there, I never saw anything going on – ever. - Biggest disappointment – the bar service of yacht club pool area. It wasn’t every terribly busy there, but for some reason, we just could not get a drink on several occasions, especially when having breakfast or lunch there. - Drinks! Every cruise, I kind of gravitate to a particular drink or two, whatever I find they do well. I typically want a tropical/Caribbean rum cocktail. I really like a good Bahama Mama, but their interpretation of that on MSC – well, the one I had anyway, as I got a blank stare trying to order one from a different bar to compare – was terrible. Next attempt was a simple pina colada – which came on the rocks and not blended, and was not very good either. Next up was a mojito – which was great and was then the staple for the duration of the cruise, along with the occasional MSC Bellini from Champagne Bar, random beer, or Venchi latte or martini. - The yacht club lounge snacks were a huge hit. They change it over 5 times a day (breakfast/snack/tea/aperitif/night temptations) so we all made multiple trips daily, just to look. From mini burgers to stuffed puff pastries, to desserts and chocolates – it was a great perk! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
This was a highly anticipated cruise for us.....after 50 cruises, we decided to begin experiencing other lines. The Seaside is beautiful, shows are amazing! We did experience several negative things....."Drinks on Us" really ... Read More
This was a highly anticipated cruise for us.....after 50 cruises, we decided to begin experiencing other lines. The Seaside is beautiful, shows are amazing! We did experience several negative things....."Drinks on Us" really meant, limited choices plus 15% added for each drink.....some wines NOT available on the 4th night for the remainder of the cruise.....in order to be served in most lounges, you either had to sit at the bar or stand and wait to order......The Trio Dining Package consisted of only 3 items from a preselected menu...disappointing for price of $138 per person.......There was also NO walking/jogging track....staff was not very friendly, even though the cruise director kept saying they were just like a family.......We were amazed how early people got up to mark chairs on Sea Days......The Cruise Critic reception was amazing....hosted by the Captain and his Sr Officers, drinks, appetizers, cake, etc. Not sure about our GOLD status match program....most things offered still required some cost! We will have to think hard about another trip with MSC...... Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We had chosen this cruise line because we were helping a friend celebrate his Birthday. We booked 1 year in advance. The dates changed, the number of ports were changed. But the line and travel agent said otherwise I still have the ... Read More
We had chosen this cruise line because we were helping a friend celebrate his Birthday. We booked 1 year in advance. The dates changed, the number of ports were changed. But the line and travel agent said otherwise I still have the original pprwrk. Cost us money to change our flight.. .So the ship is lovely. Not much shopping. 1 of our bags was at the door when we arrived.. The other took 6 HRS to get to the room. We were told to go to security when we met it coming down the hall. THE Original drink package we had was ALL included.. upon arrival, it CAHNGED to anything under $10. We asked for an iorn, told we had to reserve and might get it the next day.. then told we had to fill out a paperbag so we wouldn't disturb him again.. lol. We ordered roomservice 2 times. The 1st time EVERYTHING was wrong except the coffee and cereal. The 2nd time it NEVER showed.. Hope you like pizza.. the menu never changes on the buffett. The bars close down early. So if you're looking for a drink at 830 pm.. good luck. 2 bars were out of the WINE I like, 1 bar was closed and I was instructed to go elsewhere. So, I gather Italians don't know how to party.. The shows sucked sooo bad. So bad. DON'T DO THE SHOWES, YOU NEVER GET THAT TIME BACK. We ended up in San Juan at 5 pm. The homeless people were already ASLEEP!!!! Originally we were supposed to be there 2 days.. only on port 7 hrs. You can feel the boat rock soo much.. take dramamine with you.. you could feel it on EVERY floor. The dinner package is not worth it. You only get to order from a small menu (hope you like crab cakes). The other 2 ports were ok.. 2 days at sea. 2 Days at sea !!! Where the alcohol was running out. AND The chocolate was running out. So it was good luck to everyone.. on anything. HOPE everyone has happy meds.. OMG the mess of diembarking taking your own luggage.... IT was a mess!! Took over an hr to get off that HORRIBLE boat. Had a line that wrapped around mid deck. People cutting line, just stressful. Then they let us go out with the Canadiens. Smh. Free at last! FINALLY Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We just got off the MSC Seaside this morning and we had a great experience: Ship - very beautiful and glam. Shines and bling-y. Nice facilities/different bars and sitting areas throughout. Took us a number of days not to get list. I ... Read More
We just got off the MSC Seaside this morning and we had a great experience: Ship - very beautiful and glam. Shines and bling-y. Nice facilities/different bars and sitting areas throughout. Took us a number of days not to get list. I thought the gym was well equipped. When we were at sea it sometimes felt noisy and we had a hard time finding a quiet area -not so on port days. Take a few hours to enjoy the ship on port days - esp the atrium area and the pools. Seaview lounge was our favourite spot to read the paper/books. Cabin - we had a Bella level balcony cabin, upgraded to the fantastical package. We felt it was spacious. Was hard to use the space in the closet due to the doors overlapping. Our balcony was a bit shorter than some due to our angle 12206– about 6 feet wide. Our room steward Juan was excellent, took care of our every need. Watch the charges for the minibar - we were charged on the last day for items we did not consume. We were assured that would be resolved soon after a visit to the reception desk. Bed was comfortable. Lots of USB charging ports and one pair of 110 (2 prong) sockets for charging. Dining- coffee bar, chocolate, gelato were stand outs. We upgraded to the classic drink package (no longer available) and worth every penny as it included gelato and special coffees. Breakfast buffet and in the main dining room was very good - great service in the seashore restaurant for breakfast and lunch. Lunch was our second favourite meal in the main restaurant. We only had supper once in the main restaurant as we paid for the trio of specialty restaurants and it was edible but lacklustre. I was less hyped about the pizza on the buffets that everyone has been raving about - perhaps my expectations were too high. Specialty restaurants - Butchers Cut - best specialty restaurant we went to, meat was excellent. Dinner was a bit rushed but our server was entertaining. Mozzerella beet salad appetizer was excellent, the cheese tart was very rich. Asian Fusion was what we most looked forward to and it was only ok. Service was very spotty. Husband sent his steak back as it was way over cooked but then it came back very unevenly cooked, quality of meet was only ok. My fish was not Mahi-mahi but it was very good, pineapple upside down cake yummy, also chocolate soufflé was excellent. Last night ate at Ocean Cay. Service was ok (not enough wait staff), meal was very heavy (but it was probably what we ordered), desserts were unappealing (didn’t finish the crepe brûlée- first time for everything). Food was better at Asian fusion but service was better at Ocean Cay. Entertainment and Activities - adult pool - we enjoyed this salt water pool, especially on port days. It is very floaty. Loved watching movies on the top deck at night -fun! White party was a disappointment- again, probably had raised expectations due to the hype. We kept things pretty low key, we saw 3 shows, the Peter Punk surprised us -little does that anymore so we were impressed, and loved The MJ show. Couldn’t do the zip line due to windy weather but did the water slides -fun! General service - we found the staff friendly and engaging 98% of the time. No problems at all. Ports - we had a lovely authentic meal in SAN Juan - originally when we booked we thought we had 2 days in SAN Juan but once we saw the schedule realized it was no more than 8 hours! Walked about Charlotte Amalie and Phillipsburg. We were hoping to walk to the water taxi to Water Island in Charlotte Amalie but discovered our boat was docked in another area of Charlotte Amalie so we’re mildly disappointed. Had a great day anyhow. Value for money this cruise is great. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We booked this cruise as MSC honored our Royal Caribbean status, therefore we got MSC Black status which is their top tier. The benefits were better than our RCI benefits. Food was very good in MDR for lunch and dinner. The buffet ... Read More
We booked this cruise as MSC honored our Royal Caribbean status, therefore we got MSC Black status which is their top tier. The benefits were better than our RCI benefits. Food was very good in MDR for lunch and dinner. The buffet needed much improvement as it had the same food for both lunch and dinner and the one night we attempted dinner at the buffet we ended up leaving and going to dining room. Entertainment was different than other cruise lines but enjoyable. They had a different show each night and performed it 3 times a night. Reservations were required to get guarantee seat and we found most shows were booked daily. It was easy to reserve your shows on the MSC app. The last night was the Michael Jackson show which was one of my favorites. They also preformed a shortened Opera one afternoon and we enjoyed that also. The water slides on the ship were fast and fun. In order to ride the zip line you paid $10 for one ride but it was closed 90% of the cruise due to high winds. We did manage to get a ride the last sea day and the view of the ocean was awesome. Our favorite venue on the ship was Venchi chocolate shop which was an added cost but worth the money They had a chocolate fountain and the smell lured you in. The chocolate ( we made multiple purchases ) was the best I’ve ever eaten as were the shakes, gelato, and alcoholic drinks. We sailed with the fantastica package which gave us 12 drink coupons each that could be used for alcoholic drinks up to $9, gelatos, shakes, wine or beer. We used 90% of our coupons for the gelato and sorbet as it was that good. They had 4 gelato stations around the ship for our purchases. We had a balcony on deck 11 which was nice but lacking drawer space but we made it work. The only problem was there was a promenade on deck 6 and of course it was a smoking area and at times we could smell smoke on the balcony. Embarkation was easy and quick and I found debarkation the easiest of any cruise line we have sailed. They use face recognition in Miami so getting off was easy and no need for a customs form or see an agent in customs. We ate at one speciality restaurant as we got a free meal for having black status. We chose Butchers Cut which was the steakhouse. He fillet mignon was perfectly cooked and delicious as were the appetizers and dessert. All in all it was a great cruise and would definitely sail again for the right price. Read Less
MSC Seaside Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 0.0
Dining 4.5 0.0
Entertainment 4.5 0.0
Public Rooms 4.5 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.5 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0

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