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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
We chose this Cruise because we saw the ship coming off of our 12th Anniversary to Jamaica and we decided then and there, we wanted to do this ship for our 13th Anniversary. The price we paid for our Cruise was great. The food on the ship ... Read More
We chose this Cruise because we saw the ship coming off of our 12th Anniversary to Jamaica and we decided then and there, we wanted to do this ship for our 13th Anniversary. The price we paid for our Cruise was great. The food on the ship was good but it can be better. When we bought our Cruise last year, the tourist who helped us said it was a different experience and it was. Just like she said, MSC caters to the Europeans! It's like nobody else matters but our money spends the same. The staff, mainly the ones dressed in white are stuck up with nasty attitudes! Never saw the Captain not one day! The only entertainment we enjoyed was the Michael Jackson show. That was the worse KARAOKE I've ever seen on a Cruise and it was just one night! MSC Seaside never starts any shows, bands, games, etc. on time. It's like they wait til the last minute to show up and set up. The music groups are amazing. Seaside has some Awesome singers but they only cater to certain people with their music and that's not right! When you advertise R&B SOUL, then that's what you need to be performing is R&B SOUL!! When you advertise Old School Jams, then perform Old School Jams! Their entertainment can use a lot of adjustment. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
The ship was beautiful but the food was just ok. You cruise for the food & for an Italian line the food was very disappointing. I was also amazed how small the pools were, you couldn’t even get in due to overcrowding. This is my ... Read More
The ship was beautiful but the food was just ok. You cruise for the food & for an Italian line the food was very disappointing. I was also amazed how small the pools were, you couldn’t even get in due to overcrowding. This is my first & last time with MSC. The crew were not very friendly and definitely not over accommodating. Even our cabin guy was not personable. I had premium package & still had to pay for gelato, everything seemed to be extra. Getting our pictures was a major ordeal. We ordered & was told to return in 8 hours (10:30pm). Was told to come back in an hour. I really wanted to give MSC a chance but unfortunately it’s my first and last time. I received a good deal but when on the ship I had to upgrade because I didn’t receive what I expected. Royal Caribbean I’ll be back! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
This was my first time on MSC we normally cruise Carnival. We booked this cruise with a group of people because their travel agent loved this ship. For our family we had issues from the start. Before the cruise calling into customer ... Read More
This was my first time on MSC we normally cruise Carnival. We booked this cruise with a group of people because their travel agent loved this ship. For our family we had issues from the start. Before the cruise calling into customer service you need to be prepared to have an hour because the hold times are crazy! Things I was told on the phone were never completed. I will say boarding the ship was effortless and ran very smoothly. But once on the ship we realized that the drink package that was included was only on 2 of our rooms not all 4. So we had to wait in a very long line for customer service. It appears that a lot of other people had issues as well. The drinks on us package is a bit confusing. They charge you a service charge every time. For example for a bottle of water is was a dollar for them to hand it to you.. (not really free) Now let’s talk Fun pass I had my 4 kiddos and after looking at the website of all the activities I bought 2 fun passes. ($200) that was disappointing. The zip line wasn’t open very much and the arcade well it has 3 games and 5 claw machines that are $3 each the claw machines aren’t included in the fun pass so my kids not taking time to read signs charged some to my card for that... My 2 youngest went to the kids club once and both said please don’t make me go back.. The shows were great! The entire family really enjoyed them! The cruise critic party was very nice and I really enjoyed meeting the officers there. The buffet was pretty good. The only thing is sometimes they would only have one open and it was be very crowded. When at port the pools were closed that was a bummer for people who didn’t want to get off the ship. There are plenty of places to just sit and enjoy yourself. They are trying to grow their North American fleet but my personal opinion is they are no where close to the service you get from Carnival. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I embarked on a 7 night cruise on the MSC Seaside, leaving from Miami and going to San Juan, Charlote Amalie, Phillipsburg, and Nassau. While I have been on a few cruises before, this was a first cruise experience for my wife and I chose ... Read More
I embarked on a 7 night cruise on the MSC Seaside, leaving from Miami and going to San Juan, Charlote Amalie, Phillipsburg, and Nassau. While I have been on a few cruises before, this was a first cruise experience for my wife and I chose it because of the size of the ship and an expected smooth ride for my wife, as well as the ports and the appearance of the MSC Seaside. My impression with MSC began before I boarded while I was preparing for my cruise. I ran into issues with the MSC web site and customer service which have been discussed in this post, https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2674801-msc-website-bugs-and-support-experience/?tab=comments&source=122648#comment-57780603 . Now that I have cruised on the MSC Seaside, I'll share my onboard experience. The Embarkation and boarding experience started off excellent, it lost excellent status with baggage delivery and I'll come back to this. Have you ever gone into a super market, motor vehicle office, or other service area, looked at the long line and wondered why so many stations were unstaffed and things were't operating optimally? This was NOT the case with MSC embarkation. I was amazed to see every station was staffed, some with more than one person. We walked right up and found the staff knowledgeable, polite, and efficient. We did have priority boarding with the Aurea experience, but every station was staffed and they were prepared to operate at full efficiency. Bravo MSC, I could not imagine this process running any better. Since we got on so fast and early, our room wasn't ready but no complaints here as it wasn't supposed to be ready yet. We ate lunch, had a couple of drinks, and were then notified that our room was ready an hour before it was supposed to be. When we got to the room three out of our family's five bags were delivered. This was not an issue at first because bags were still being delivered. This became an issue several hours later, after dinner, when the two bags were still not delivered and the ship had left port. My wife was worried as one child had no clothes other than what she had carried on for that day and she didn't know if the bag made it on the ship. We returned to our room again about 8:00 pm and a note was on the door saying a bag needed further security scanning and we need to pick it up at the luggage center. Here's where MSC can use some help with communicating. We look in the MSC App which contains the ship map and you can find out how to get to things onboard and there's no "luggage center" found. We check the ship map by the elevator and there's no luggage center. A few other passengers show up with the same note and are having the same problem, nobody knows where the luggage center is. We go down to deck 5 which is where customer service is and of course the line is really long being the first day onboard. It looked like about an hour more wait by the number of people and the rate at which things were moving, but I will say every station was staffed again. A few of us wandered around looking for the luggage center and eventually came across a crew member in the hall, asked about it, and he took us to a room we would have never found on our own. Our largest bag was there but another was still unaccounted for. The bag was flagged by security for containing a surge protector. Security flagged it but the ship allows it onboard. I read on here to bring one but it was not necessary and ended up causing me some grief. Keep this in mind if you bring one. I now had to get this large fifty pound bag from the luggage center on deck 5 to my room at the front of the ship on deck 12 with ship activities in full swing and people everywhere finding their way around on the first day. Delivery luggage late at night through a crowds of people wasn't how I wanted to be spending my first night onboard. If they cleared the luggage, why couldn't the crew just deliver it. After all, we still had another bag that we were told was being delivered. That second bag showed up at about 10:00 pm and caused a bit of a panic. My advice is to just know that bags can come pretty late. Carry on what you need for the first day and just be patient. There's a lot going on. We had booked an Aurea Grand Suite (SE3) for the family and were expecting a separate bedroom for us parents, and a couch that converted into bunk beds for the kids, a table, and four chairs. This is how the room was laid out in pictures and seemed like a pretty nice cabin for a cruise. MSC does state that furniture may vary in rooms and it did. Instead of bunk beds we had a couch that folded out to a double bed, no table, and one chair. Furthermore the room had a techno gym attached to the wall in the living room. This may sound like a nice bonus to some but this thing was a monstrosity and room space is very valuable on cruises. We didn't want that, never saw anything saying it would be there, it was unappealing, and in the way. My wife waiting on the long customer service line to see what could be done about it and that didn't go well. I talked to our cabin steward (who was wonderful) and her boss. My wife was told someone would come by to fix it, the steward boss told me it couldn't be fixed. One look at it and I knew we'd be stuck with that we had there. There was much back and forth with several people and my wife was not having a good first cruise experience. We were told the room was a wellness suite and came with the gym. We didn't book a wellness suite, we booked an Aurea Grand Suite, and it was not feeling very grand. The steward boss called his boss at one point and had the call on speaker phone. The woman says "he has the big room with a gym, what else does he want?" Well, I didn't want a gym in my room, I wanted bunk beds for the kids, table, chairs, and staff that listens to the problem. The room was what it was and there was nothing that could be done about it. The kids had to share a bed and get on with our vacation. The other disappointment was that we were so far forward that our balcony had a steel wall instead of glass. When you sat down on the balcony, the water could not be seen and instead you look up at the sky or at the steel wall. It was nice though if you stood up. Pay close attention to where your room is on the ship and what your experience will be. On the 2nd day of the cruise we had a Cruise Critic meet and greet with senior officers of the ship. The cruise director, Gene Young, came by to chat with us and see how things were going. I shared my pre-boarding experience with the web site and my onboard experience so far. Gene seemed very sincere and listened to what we had to say. He was glad to hear that some things were going very well and that we loved the ship, he was sorry to hear some of the negative experiences. Gene told us that he would talk to the senior officers of various departments and he himself would give us a call back. Gene did in fact call us the next day. Of course he couldn't fix the furniture or get the monstrosity out of our room but Gene and staff did offer us a few things to help smooth things over and make up for the disappointment. Ideally the cabin experience should be very clear. The wellness suite experience with a techno-gym in the room is very different than what was expected. We're grateful that he listened and the staff did what they could. Cruises are known for eating and the food on board was very good, but I also expect it to be very good. Both the buffet and dining room met expectations and I was satisfied with all of my meals. Lots of people rave about the pizza onboard the MSC Seaside and being a native New Yorker, I'm a bit of a pizza snob. Us New Yorkers tend to think we're authorities on pizza and have our expectations. I'm enough of a pizza snob to know the best NY pizza is not in Manhattan but instead in Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island. Now that I established myself as having strong opinions on pizza, I made it one of my first orders of business to go to the buffet and try this famous MSC Seaside pizza. I sampled the pepperoni pizza, some plain cheese, and a white pizza and the verdict is, thumbs up. I really didn't expect to like the pizza on the ship but it was genuinely good pizza, even by my tough standards. For those who like some simple grilled foods, you can always get a good burger at the buffet. Most of the carving stations were very good too, although I did find a pork loin to be a little bland. It was from a buffet though, so it is what it is. One more note on the buffets, the traffic flow is very chaotic. I'm not really sure how to solve this, but their must be someone on the MSC payroll who deals with these problems. It becomes a real challenge to get through there without getting a plate of food dumped on you or dumping yours on somebody else. There are lots of people going in every direction trying to load up as much as they can on their twelve inch plate. I don't know if I can fault MSC for this, but it would be nice if they can study it and find some way to improve the traffic flow. The dining room meals were excellent whether it was meat, pasta, or seafood. The famous Butcher's Cut steakhouse on board was a disappointment and I do not recommend it. I've been to some pretty nice steak houses in the same price range, and this one does not compare. I thought the NY Strip I got in the main dining room was better than the rib eye I had at Butcher's Cut and the Butcher's Cut steak was no better than any supermarket steak that I cook myself. The atmosphere didn't help either when one family was in there with their kids running around and screaming like they're in Chuckie Cheese. You can't always blame the restaurant for guests behavior, but the food just was't up to par either. We went to the theater four nights and were impressed with every show. The performers were very talented although you do see some of their acts get recycled and repackaged from show to show. Something that was oddly enjoyable was how they rebrand things and mix aspects and music from different shows together. After the first show we thought "that was good, but doesn't make any sense and we don't really know what they were trying to do". Things just don't seem to fit together. However, think of the movie "Moulin Rouge" and see if if you haven't before attending a show on a this cruise. Somehow that helped me to get it. They're reusing music, sometimes basing a character on another character, and creating their own show. It's not an attempt to perform a story you know, especially one with copyrights, they're instead creating their own show using some elements that you've seen and heard before. MSC has rolled out bracelets which can be used in place of a cruise card except for leaving and boarding the ship. Unfortunately, these bracelets which could be great are another negative story. The first problem you run into is just putting the bracelets on, which is really difficult without help from another person and this is unacceptable. Watches have been in use for a long time and we now have many successful wristband models from smart watches, and sport bands. There have been so many easy to use bands, that I don't know how MSC managed to roll out something so difficult to put on. Get one when you go on their cruise and you'll see what I mean, it's just absurd. The next problem, is they don't work everywhere onboard as they're supposed to. Most places no problem, every now and then you get a drink and you're told "I need your cruise card, I don't have a reader for the band", and they sometimes seem annoyed to have to tell you that. In MSC's propaganda and their app they mention how you can track every member of your party to know where each other are. This can be a great thing when you want to split up to do different things onboard and just find each other later. Nowhere does it tell you than this tracking doesn't work with the Aurea experience bands you get when you board. Instead you're given some instructions to setup people that can't be completed because the band doesn't have the QR code. I gave up on it thinking it was more trouble than it was worse but happened to ask someone at the game room when I saw they were selling another band for this purpose. We were told when we checked in that one daughter would get a kids band that is free and allows tracking, and the band would be in our room. The band was not in our room, my wife had to wait online in the kids center for over an hour to get it, the setup was confusing and cumbersome, and towards the end of the cruise a $15 charge showed up for it when we were told it was free. The kids band also stopped working one day. My wife went to customer service and was told to go do the kids center and they would need to set it up again. There were about twenty other people there with the same problem and more on the way. The poor guy working there was pulling his hair out and telling people it is a system wide problem, he couldn't do anything about it, and he doesn't know why people are being sent to him. This lack of communication between departments and passengers being sent from one place to another is a common theme onboard. The crew knows who has the kid bracelets and they know what room they're in. They also have daily announcements that come out every day from our good friend and cruise director, Gene Young. It seems they could've just came out and told people via an announcement or another letter left on the door that the kid bracelet tracking was offline. That would have saved passengers a lot of time from trying to get it resolved and saved a lot of crew member stress and time dealing with the issue. The bracelets are a great concept with some great features, but it wasn't a great experience. I'd like to know get back to some positives. The ship was immaculate. Every space was very clean and it seemed rather effortless for them to maintain it. With 5000 people onboard you expect things to get messed up but they didn't. Everywhere was clean and you rarely saw the staff cleaning it. They just popped out like little elves, took care of it and vanished. Whenever the ship was in port, there would always be people swinging into action to paint or clean things, but you really had to look for it to see it happen. Our room steward was excellent and one of the sweetest women we ever met. I often had to wait a while to get a drink, even at our exclusive Aurea deck bar, but the wait was not any different than I'd have anywhere else. If you go to a busy bar, or any pool bar at a hotel, you're not going to be the only one there and you'll often have to wait your turn to get a drink. The staff was always polite, friendly, and happy to help once they got to me. Early reports of the ship mentioned an odor that they encountered onboard. We did not experience any such odor. Disembarkation was orderly and impressive. They staged us in groups waiting to disembark. All of our luggage was waiting for us and easily found. I can not think of anyway they could have made this process go smoother. I'll likely travel with MSC again, but I don't know if my next cruise will be on an MSC ship. I think they're doing some really great things, but there needs to be more focus on the customer experience. This experience starts with the purchase, continues during the pre-cruise period, onboard, and leaving the ship. I think MSC will have a growing presence in the cruise industry and will be a major player, but customer experience needs to be emphasized in everything they do. Just accepting something as being what it is or expecting that customers will figure out that something isn't working or where some place is, is not good enough. Every experience needs to be stress free, pleasurable, intuitive, and impressive. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Mixed review of the MSC Seaside. The Seaside is a beautiful ship overall. However it struggles with certain amenities and service levels. For example, their are Four Banks of Elevators that cannot adequately handle 5000 ... Read More
Mixed review of the MSC Seaside. The Seaside is a beautiful ship overall. However it struggles with certain amenities and service levels. For example, their are Four Banks of Elevators that cannot adequately handle 5000 passengers. Waits can be up to 10 - 15 minutes at peak times. Be aware that, if you get a room that has a door to an adjoining room, it is not "soundproof". They do leak sound and I would never take an adjoining room again. Rooms are small for a new ship especially the bathroom and shower. If you are tall with long legs, you will likely have to sit at an angle to avoid hitting your knee on the sink cabinetry. Shows are top rate BUT YOU HAVE TO BOOK in advance. Otherwise you see no show at all except for a recording of it on the tv. Food is consistently good but not great except for the pizza. The choices on the buffet are not as varied as Celebrity or NCL. They have vegetarian choices that are nicely labeled but they are very limited on vegetarian hot proteins. This is mainly because their Asian and Indian choices are limited due to the small numbers of people of those cultures who cruise with MSC. The food in the dining Room is also consistently good and occasionally very good. However, unlike Celebrity, NCL and RCL, there is no special night for lobster or steak. Both lobster and steak do appear on the menu every evening but for an additional price of up to $24. Some of the ports have strange arrival times. For example, the ship arrived in San Juan, Puerto Rico, at 5 PM on a Monday when many stores are closed. This departed at 12:30 am. Forget about museums or Segway tours. The ship arrived in St Maarten at 7 am and passengers had to be back on-board at 1:30 PM. That leaves precious little time for the beach or touring the island. Staff tends to be disinterested and not nearly at the level of service as Celebrity, NCL or RCI. Dining room staff are overworked and about 1/3 of the staff you get on Celebtity. This causes long delays between courses, sometimes taking almost 2 hours for the meal. It is important to understand that dining Room seating is not separated into an early and late seating like most ships. Instead, there is a seating at 5:15 p.m, 7:15 p.m. and 9:15PM in one dining Room and 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. in the 2nd dining Room. If you ask for early seating, be aware that you may have to enter the dining room at 5:15 PM and, possibly, not be seated after 5:30 PM. The shows start at 7:15 p.m. 8:15 p.m. and 9:15 p.m., also causing havoc when people cannot get to their dining appointments on time or it takes too long for them to finish their meals. Keep in mind that every evening show has to be booked in advance and seats do run out. The performers are amazing. They do the same show three times per night and they are action-packed, highly physical shows. The only really attentive staff we had was the cabin attendant. If you're looking for a romantic dinner table for two, be forewarned; there are very few of them that are truly away from other tables. Most tables for two are just a 3 table system separated by about 6 inches which is essentially the same as having no separate table for two. Finally, MSC has no concept of how to manage crowds. For example they had a tasting party for the Specialty Restaurants to promote their menus. It was attended by about 200 - 300 people squeezed into a small area. As a result it was nearly impossible to get close enough to sample any food in at least 2 of the restaurants. In addition, the layout of the ship on the 16th floor is not good. Only one set of elevators goes to the Specialty Restaurants. If you get on the wrong elevator you have to get off on the 15th floor and hike to the stairs or the second set of elevators. In addition to having over crowded elevators in general, 2 elevators in the front are designated for yacht club members which means that, when they use their card, they control the elevator. You have a lot of people pressing both up-and-down buttons when they want to go up hoping that they can travel down in an elevator so that they can actually find room going up again! Perhaps the worst elevator problem occurred on embarkation. There were literally hundreds of people waiting for elevators for 15 minutes to half an hour. Many people decided to walk up the steps carrying heavy luggage. Again, this was not a good system for controlling passenger embarkation. There did not seem to be any problem upon disembarkation for the ports, however. I think, overall, that MSC is good value for the money but it could do much better in service, food, and crowd control. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this ship for all of the activities for children. It was a family cruise with the grandchildren. Our cabin (12001) was at the very front of the ship, which made for very long walks to restaurants, etc. which were mostly in the ... Read More
We chose this ship for all of the activities for children. It was a family cruise with the grandchildren. Our cabin (12001) was at the very front of the ship, which made for very long walks to restaurants, etc. which were mostly in the front of the ship. The cabin was very spacious with 2 bedrooms. Our cabin balcony had a wall 3/4 of the way up and was open after that. We had to stand on chairs to see the water. So much for balcony view. We felt the food was mediocre. The only real great meal was the steak in the specialty restaurant. Our other specialty restaurant was the Asian one, where it shared a wall with the Japanese steak house type dinner. The chefs cooking there and the people around the tables were VERY noisy, and it did not make for a pleasant eating experience for those in the restaurant part. The buffet was ok, lots of choices, and the same food every single day. Cruise Critic threw a GREAT party while on ship. Kudos to them. Service was our other complaint. Much of the crew does not understand English. We had trouble communicating with our cabin attendant. When we would call Housekeeping, we never got an answer. Same with the front desk. The elevators were crammed with people and I experienced claustrophobia for the first time. Getting on a tender to go back to the ship in St. George had about a 2 hour wait, the line was so long. Now for the good stuff. The grandkids thoroughly enjoyed all the activities on board and the ports. Embarking and disembarking were handled very well. My husband and I are used to cruising on much smaller ships, and I doubt I will ever get on one this large again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
The ship is pretty, the food is good, the crew is pleasant. BUT There is constant pressure to buy "Specialty Dining" packages at inflated prices, excursions at inflated prices, jewelry, perfume, art and spa treatments. Very ... Read More
The ship is pretty, the food is good, the crew is pleasant. BUT There is constant pressure to buy "Specialty Dining" packages at inflated prices, excursions at inflated prices, jewelry, perfume, art and spa treatments. Very insistent pressure. If you cruise at the "Bella" experience (cheapest "level"), there are parts of the ship you cannot access and the bar staff will be much less interested in serving you if you have a drink package. Your table in the dining room will be by the aisle and traffic flow, and they won't be happy about changing it. It will be difficult to get an elevator to ro from your deck. The free drink package we had made no sense, with some items not included that cost less than included items. There is a 15% service charge for every item you get, so it's really not free. This is in addition to the 12% pp per day service charge. The room stewards are incredibly good and efficient. Service desk helpful. Dining room waitstaff top notch. Dining room menus offered great selection and almost everything tasted good. Buffet had a wide selection of interesting items, but had the same items every day. Drink station not well organized, with cups and glasses hard to get to and no traffic flow marked. Entertainment was below average. Nightly shows, while flashy, make no sense and all the music is canned, most vocalists lip-synching. Why is there a juggler and aerialist in every theater show? Lounge entertainers were awful and used karaoke type backing tracks all the time. The only actual "band" was not well rehearsed, and had to play country one night, islands music another, 70s stuff another. Waterslides were fun but always had long lines during limited open hours. Pools closed nightly at 7 or so. No night time swims or hot tubbing. Would we go again? Not at the Bella level, and not with the Drinks on Us package. Higher levels pricing negates using this cruise line, so probably not. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
MSC Seaside is a lovely new ship. In general, the deck layout is not ideal especially if you have to use a stroller. They do not have decks that get you from front to back of ship without having to go up or down a deck or two. I don’t ... Read More
MSC Seaside is a lovely new ship. In general, the deck layout is not ideal especially if you have to use a stroller. They do not have decks that get you from front to back of ship without having to go up or down a deck or two. I don’t know if it is galley or what but you hit a dead end and then have to go up a deck to continue going forward. Not a good design but this is not the only ship or cruise line where you have that issue. In most areas the elevator and surrounding area is a black shiny wall. It tends to be very dark and lighter colors would be preferable. The elevators apparently are not synchronized in any fashion. Most times you get to a bank of elevators and all four are on the top decks or on the bottom decks. One elevator is reserved for Yacht club which further limits space for others. If you have strollers or wheelchairs it is even worse. On a ship that bills itself for family you would think they would plan for strollers and wheelchairs and walkers and provide extra elevators or at least faster services. Too much wait time everyday and too many full elevators when they finally arrive. Dining room is well laid out with sufficient space for the wait staff to get thru. Not quite as fancy as the formal dining rooms on Royal Caribbean but they do a nice job with white table clothes and all the glassware and silver you need. Service was good. Menus tend to be more limited than on some lines but they offer the “Classics” every night on both the adult and children’s menus. So if you didn’t care for the entrees that nite you could go with Classic Offerings. They were also good about getting French fries for the kids or pasta without sauce so you could just butter it for smaller kids. They were very accommodating and friendly. MSC enforces the dress code for the dining room. They say no tank tops. It should say NO SLEEVELESS shirts. A tank is different from a sleeveless t-shirt. Lots of guys came to the door in a sleeveless T and were told to go change. Cabins were clean but small. For my needs I would have preferred a stack of shelves or drawers instead of a mini bar. The storage space is very limited. The closet doors are designed by the village IDIOT! There are two bypass doors. When you slide them to the right the opening is about 3”. You cannot even reach in to grab shoes from the floor or anything hanging unless it is the end garment. If you slide them to the left you get about an 18” opening and then you can reach in and slide things around and hope that the garment you can reach is the one you want. The area in front of the closet is about 12 inches wide since the bed or the sofa end at that point and what is left is the space to access the closet. Really stupid design. Should be a three-door bypass or some type of collapsing door either to the side or top to bottom. Two shelves and a safe at the right that you can access easily when the doors are to the left. The center drawer in the vanity is the only one drawer in the cabin. It has the hairdryer hard wired inside. The inside of the drawer is black! Makes it very hard to find things in there. It only slides open about half of the length making it a dark hole to try and find whatever you store there and then that needs to be untangled from the hairdryer cord. Very poor design for a new ship. In the quad cabins they have a very innovative design. The sofa pops up to form bunk beds for the kids. That means you don’t have to fold out the sofa bed every night and back in in the morning and you have the same amount of floor space as a cabin without kids. Very nice design. You also have the end of the bunk beds to hang a wet swim suit or to mount a shoe storage bag with pockets to organize other items. Excellent idea. The only suggestion I have is that when they take the sofa cushions off to make a bed – take those big cushions OUT OF THE CABIN and store them for the week. To shove them between the curtain and the end of the bed is stupid. Makes closing the curtains and issue and takes up precious space for suitcase storage. The verandas are standard size. The chairs have a lower back which makes them more comfortable. You don’t have to always sit so straight up. There is enough room to move them around a bit and still use your deck. We had great services in the cabins. If we needed something all we had to do was ask. They kept the cabins clean and supplied. MSC has reduced the crew to passenger ratio and gone to automation for some services. With the Fantastic Experience you get wine, beer and soda included with lunch and dinner. It is a self-serve style service. That allows fewer staff in the buffet area. Nice thought but it is does not work for about 50% of the passengers. We had 12 in our group. Only half of us could use the service. Both the ship card and the ship bracelet did not scan or dispense beverages at the self-serve stations. You had to go hunt down a staff member to get your beverages. Stupid. At a minimum they should have been able to correct the technical issues with each passenger card after the first time it didn’t work. But they do not do that. They just hope you go away and don’t bother them or bother some other staffer. The other automated service is the small electronic device at each bar or that each server carries around to use when ordering a drink. It requires you sign with your finger most of the time. It is the new charging mechanism to replace paper receipts. The stylist is missing or the crew member has it in their pocket and does not provide it for signature. You end up with an illegible mark on the screen that passes for a signature. Very dumb. Good idea if they just had the technology to support the idea. Photo area is small, few display racks and very disorganized. Very small desk to check out. Again, the technology of looking at photos digitally didn’t work for most cards. I do not know who they use for their IT support but they are definitely sub-par for the industry. Photo prices and packages are no where to be found on a placard or on a hand out. If you ask, they say they don’t have a list for prices or packages. I even went to customer service and they had nothing. Very poor. It should be posted. Then I was told it was a buy 5 and get 5 free. Great promotion. You pick out your photos, stand in the mob and wait your turn to check out only to find that you can only get the five free ones for YOUR cabin. You cannot include photos of your family and grandkids from other cabins even if YOU are the one who paid for them! Why would I want 10 photos of my husband and myself??!! A clear posting would help a lot. It would reduce the problems at check out and the ongoing arguments of everyone who was told you can’t have those photos since they are from a different cabin. I heard that argument at least a dozen times while I waited for the second time to purchase photos after I did it “wrong”. Most the wait time was for passengers to have issues explained or to get prices or to try to get a verbal idea of what would constitute a package price. There is no area for you to lay out 2 dozen pictures so that you can compare and chose. We had excellent photographers each formal night. She was good at arranging the groups and made sure that you didn’t have one-person half hidden or the wrong heights next to each other. Good composition and good photos to choose from. Very willing to do couples and different families. We had excellent agents at customer services desk. We should not have had to use those services but at least we did get our issues resolved. We booked well over a year ago. We chose the Fantastic Experience for 4 cabins (12 pax). The Experience was to include 12 drink coupons for each passenger/non-alcoholic for kids; and the wine/beer/soda with lunch and dinner. Last March we read on Cruise Critic that the coupons were being phased out. It would be replaced with wine/beer/soda at lunch and dinner. We already had that in the package we purchased so they were just eliminating a perk we had paid for. When we printed our boarding documents there was an asterisk next to the what is included in your cruise. That asterisk corresponded to a very small print paragraph that mentioned the drink coupons. When we did not receive our coupons at boarding, and they were not in the cabins, I took the paperwork and stood in line. The agent made copies of each boarding document then went in back and produced the coupon booklets. I should not have had to go to that effort. It was part of the deal and it should have been provided without issue. I also wanted to put onboard credit on some cabins. I went to the desk with cash in hand and had it credited to cabins and signed the receipt. Days later it was not posted to the cabin accounts so it was go stand in line and show the receipt to get it posted. The same happened with the onboard credit from my agent. After three days and it did not show on the account I went down and spent about 15 minutes with an agent who finally did find the credit in an “on shore” account that had not been transferred. It is bs in my book. They just hope you don’t make a stink and then they don’t have to pay out, I guess. MSC needs to work on providing staffing and signage for ports of call. They have two gangways and the instructions to get there are poor and the directional stands with arrows placed around the ship are inadequate. I don’t know if pranksters turned the signs to the arrow pointing in the wrong directions or if they truly were clueless as to the way to route people. The number of “arrow signs” and the frequency at “intersections” what wholly inadequate. Staff was absent. You had lines snaking around the ship and up the stairs and then when you came to an elevator bank and the doors opened then 20 people would try to merge into the line at mid-point rather than getting to the back of the line. There were no lines blocking off those points of merge and NO STAFF keeping order. It was totally amateur hour over and over. No excuse for that other than they don’t have sufficient staffing. We also found that the number of European passengers far outnumbered the US passengers and apparently the custom elsewhere is to just shove an push and bully till you get to the head of the line, to the first elevator or to the buffet entrée FIRST. No courtesy no manners. Me First. All The Time! I have no clue where the term “ugly American” comes from after this experience. We are BLACK card which entitled us to priority tender services in Grand Cayman. That worked as intended and it was a blessing as we had an outside excursion booked. They have that one down and they execute it perfectly. They have one guy at the gangway that I think needs to work for TSA. I guess you give the guy a smidge of authority and he has to go wild. I got him twice. He decided my beach bag was TOO BIG for port. He said you cannot take that thru the secured area as it is too large. He looked thru it and saw beach towels, sand toys and snorkels and masks, camera, phone and sunscreen. Nothing to see here. Just didn’t like the size. I asked why wasn’t there some information provided if a specific size was required. He said that the two wheels on the bottom made it “luggage” and not a beach bag. The second time he kept me there about 5 minutes while he tried to call immigration!! What an ass. I saw people with much larger bags in the next line so I don’t know what they guy’s issue was. Just stupid. He finally backed off when he saw I was going to make an issue of it. Neither port had any problem with my bag. Just this jackass. Returning to the ship was a treat. We were greeted with ice cold water and a cold wash clothe to wipe your face. It was heaven. Nice touch MSC. Good idea. Bought a fun pass for the grandkids and they used every point on it. It was hard to use your points when things were not open most of the time. The bowling had about 2 hours of time open per day; zip line only operated 2 days and often the attendant at the race simulator and 3D was off doing something else. Poor staffing again. Waivers were required for the waterslides and they set up a table in the walkway of the waterslides for waivers to be signed. Only 2 guys there and they were always being interrupted for questions by people wanting to know what to do since there were not instructions posted. The slide with the tubes only had about 6 tubs so the line was very long waiting for someone to slide and then turn over a tube. Very poor plan and the slide lines merged into the waiver signing lines. When boarding the ship, younger kids had to get an arm band and they should also have all the waivers signed at that time away from the slide area. Lot less confusion and chaos. Another stupid plan by MSC and they should know better. None of this crowd control and orderly execution of boarding, disembarking etc. is rocket science. We had several great bar tenders and servers. They made up for the jerks at other locations. We had good service and great conversations with them. Too bad the others did not realize that a bit of friendly attention and good service could get you a good amount of extra cash tips. I do not recommend spending the $5.00 for the wrist band. I bought one and every time it did not work they asked for my card. I recommend you buy a lanyard with a plastic pocket to keep your card. Most of the time they ask for the card anyway since the bracelette works about 15% of the time. Save the time and hassel. We still had a great time. The price was very reasonable for the number of passengers we had and the number of ports of call. We scheduled most of our excursions through non-ship providers and we were very happy with the price and services. Once we got off the ship our ports were a great experience. It was the herd mentality disembarking that was always a challenge. MSC will be loosing their American market if they don’t step it up a bit in the service and staffing departments. Perhaps they only want the European market. There is no excuse for the stupid mistakes and the congested areas and lack of workable technology. If they are going to reduce staffing then figure out how to provide the usual services. The rude, belligerent staff we did experience should be fired. They signed up for a customer service job and should be expected to be civil and polite or fired. Most of the complaints we heard from others were similar to our own. Pushing, bullying, rude, shoving etc. Lack of personnel to resolve issues and no instructions or information about a service or a product. All easily solved if they care at all to retain the market. We may sail them again – depends upon the offer. BE sure you check what you get with drink packages if you book one. The Drinks On Us is now Easy Drinks – primarily worthless. $6.00 drinks or less. Which means bottom of the line gin, vodka etc. with coke, soda or tonic. If you order a “real drink” it is $11-$15.00/each with no credit for the $6.00 already paid for in your package. On the $6.00 drink you pay the 15% gratuity each time as well. Pretty much a joke package like the beer/soda/wine with lunch and dinner. Our family enjoyed their time together. We made the most of it and not sorry we did this cruise. We have had better experiences on other lines but we have paid a lot more too. There is a saying, you get what you pay for! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
-It felt like the experience was cheapened by all the employees trying to get you to buy stuff even as you are just trying to board. It’s bad enough to be constantly accosted by hawkers as you get off the ship at different ports but we ... Read More
-It felt like the experience was cheapened by all the employees trying to get you to buy stuff even as you are just trying to board. It’s bad enough to be constantly accosted by hawkers as you get off the ship at different ports but we don’t need that on the ship. The captains excuse that it was being done because the website and app keep malfunctioning doesn’t cut it. Fix the problems with those instead of making all the workers run around trying to sell stuff. -The restaurant and room attendants were wonderful and worked super hard. -The food was ok (not great, but not horrible). The buffet on the 16th floor should stay open later than 3:30 and is the only one with soft serve ice cream at no extra charge. -having only 3 employees to actually sell pictures on the last night was just ridiculous. There were many more employees but only 3 dealing with orders so the line was over an hour long. -Every show DOESN’T need to be a (cirque de soléis) type show. A couple of the shows would have been much better without the contortionists and gymnasts, it felt like they had to earn the paycheck by forcing a performance where it didn’t make sense. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Friends had went on this cruise a year ago. We needed a vacation and thought let's give it a try! First time cruisers, so we have nothing to compare it to. Beautiful ship, and scenery. Clean also. Unfortunately a lot of rude ... Read More
Friends had went on this cruise a year ago. We needed a vacation and thought let's give it a try! First time cruisers, so we have nothing to compare it to. Beautiful ship, and scenery. Clean also. Unfortunately a lot of rude guests. People can really be inconsiderate aholes. The staff we encountered, were all pretty friendly and helpful. Food was good but not fantastic. A lot repeated dishes. Expensive up charges for specialty restaurants. We had a drink package that didn't include much, so basically worthless and to upgrade was astronomical. Elevators, they should have built more into the ship. You would wait forever at peak times and even slow times. Excursions were fun. Unfortunately MSC found a way to screw the guest and make some money on our SXM atv tour. We booked single riders and when our tickets came in, they marked everyone as double riders. So the poor atv tour owner got an earfull but it wasn't his fault, it was MSC BEING GREEDY. The tour was so fun and awesome but was somewhat ruined by that situation. We are doing a beach day today in Nassau, hopefully they can't screw that up. Spa package was nice. Massages were amazing. Thermal area was busy and hard to enjoy, especially with the inconsiderate guests. Cabins were clean and kept clean daily. Bed was horribly firm and uncomfortable. We woke up everyday sore. I truly hope the yacht club people didn't have those beds. Over $4,000 a person with that bed, oh hell no! All in all, an ok experience for us. Not sure if we will do again. Pretty sure not on MSC. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Newer Ship caught my eye as well as price and itinerary. The bathroom is quite small and you can not sit on the toilet without your knee hitting the sink. The shower stall is hard to stand in if you're a little large. My GF baggage ... Read More
Newer Ship caught my eye as well as price and itinerary. The bathroom is quite small and you can not sit on the toilet without your knee hitting the sink. The shower stall is hard to stand in if you're a little large. My GF baggage was a little delayed eventhough we put our items together on the check in area. The dining room food was average at best and we ate most of our meals in the fee paying restaurants. I recommend the Surf and Turf roll in the asian market...delish. The on board shows were very nice and there were plenty of seating in the theatre. The ports were very nice but I do not recommend the Quad tour in St Martin unless you request a single rider vehicle. We books on the MSC website and it specifically says single rider and we were forced to take a double. Of course the business said blame MSC and MSC says blame the business. The Casino is below par...NO CRAP TABLES OR CASH POKER (only Beat the dealer poker) I would go on the ship again but at a better and lower price. 3 stars at best Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
First of all let me start by saying that this was my 14th cruise and I've been on 7 different cruise lines. We choose this cruise strictly based on price. Overall, I guess we got what we paid for. The 'Easy Drink Package' ... Read More
First of all let me start by saying that this was my 14th cruise and I've been on 7 different cruise lines. We choose this cruise strictly based on price. Overall, I guess we got what we paid for. The 'Easy Drink Package' & 3 GB of data were included in our package and we had the 'Fantastica' experience with a balcony. The drink package worked out ok for us as we are wine & rum drinkers. The thing that mystifies me about this package is that you are very limited on the mixed drinks that you can get but you can get various 'virgin' drinks included. While on the ship, I mostly drank mojitos in the afternoon but my package didn't include alcoholic mojitos but I could get a virgin mojito and a shot of rum on the side so I would just pour the run into the drink before I left the bar... that made absolutely no sense to me. (You can do the same with Pina Coladas and several other drinks!) Even the bar staff agreed that it made no sense!! We found the food to be good in both the buffet & the main dining room. The only complaint there was that we felt a bit rushed as we had the 7:15 seating and there was another seating at 9:15. The staff in the Ipanema restaurant were beyond fantastic. Our waiters were fabulous especially Kelvin A. Gurley who was always right there with our wine as soon as we were seated (and returned several times during dinner to refill our glasses). Pande Putra was our server and he was also great.. although he did forget a few minor things over the course of the week but he was so sweat, we forgave him for that. We had the absolute best head waiter (Maitre d') that I have ever had the pleasure to meet and his name was Organ! It's been my experience that you meet the Maitre d' on the first night and don't see him again until the last night. Organ came to our table several times every night to make sure everything was how it should be. I saw him cut the steak for a challenged guest one night... that goes above and beyond in my opinion! I would definitely give the wait staff 5 stars. We didn't try any of the Specialty Restaurants so I can't comment on them. Now let me get to the main issues I had with this cruise. I very much enjoy having my coffee delivered in the mornings and sitting on my balcony for an hour or so enjoying the scenery. I only drink decaf coffee as caffeine upsets my stomach. The first morning when it was delivered.. it was instant coffee!! I hate instant coffee!! I mentioned it to our Head Waiter Organ, and he said it would be fixed and I would definitely get my decaf coffee for the rest of the cruise. He had arranged for someone from Room Service to go to the buffet and get me a pot of decaf coffee every morning. Through no fault of Organs, I never did get my decaf coffee. There was always an excuse! I would have to get dressed every morning and go to the buffet to get my cup of coffee and bring it back to the room. By the time I got back it was always cold because the elevators are so slow! (Plus we were in a Forward cabin & the buffet was Aft.) I was told by Room Service that there wasn't enough requests for decaf to warrant them having it available although every time I went to the buffet, the decaf dispenser was always empty... Go figure!!! Another issue for me was there was no table on the balcony. So when sitting out there enjoying the scenery I had to put my drink on the floor! (Minor issue for some I know but still a pain & definitely an easy fix to make guest more comfortable). Another major issue for us was the nightly entertainment. The shows in the main theatre were great for the first couple of nights but after that it became very repetitive... same acts in different costumes! The Beer Prov (very funny) and the Michael Jackson show were the best. The entertainment in all of the lounges was always Spanish. There was a group of young men entertaining in the Haven Lounge every night that sang in English but they finished around 11 and the lady that replaced them every night only sang in Spanish! Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a bit of Salsa.. but not every night!!! Also, I want to mention the smoking issue on this ship. It appears that smoking is allowed everywhere in the outside areas on this ship and of course in the Casino!! Not a nice experience for non smokers. Other cruise lines have designated areas for smokers! Before I finish, I would also like to mention the timing at the Ports of Call. 5pm-1am in San Juan and 7am-2pm in St. Maarten is absolutely ridiculous! Arriving at 5pm in San Juan allows you absolutely no time to explore the island and having to be back on board at 1:30 in St. Maarten is just unacceptable. The next stop after St. Maarten was Nassau where we were docked from 12-7. I would prefer they shave some time off of that port and add it to St. Maarten which is a far nicer place to spend your day!! Now I'm going to touch on Disembarkation Day. We had to be out of our cabin by 8am (which is the norm for most cruise lines). After going to the buffet for breakfast I thought I'd make a quick stop at the Ladies before leaving the ship... WELL... There was a lineup at every ladies room on the several decks I tried. The reason for this was, the stalls had been cleaned in preparation for the new guests getting onboard and then the stalls were locked, leaving only one stall in every ladies room on multiple decks!! This gave me the feeling of.. 'We have your money so now you're not important to us.. get off the ship!!' I listened to many disgruntled guests in the lineups that morning!! Once off the ship, don't even think about stopping on the gangway or just outside the terminal. You will be shouted at by MSC staff to keep moving. I overheard one of the staff telling who I assume to be a new employee.. "Speak with Authority!!".. Really???? Mostly we enjoyed our cruise but the coffee issue and the lack of nightly entertainment would deter us from booking another MSC cruise. These things are an easy fix and I hope MSC makes an effort to fix them. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My spouse and I along with 14 other friends and couples went on this Cruise last week. It was my first crusing experience but everyone else in the group has been on several cruises in the past. Ship overall was very clean. First 3 nights ... Read More
My spouse and I along with 14 other friends and couples went on this Cruise last week. It was my first crusing experience but everyone else in the group has been on several cruises in the past. Ship overall was very clean. First 3 nights of formal dining are table was the last to be served. We sat down at table before many other tables that were served before us. There were times when we were just getting our food and other tables were finishing up their dessert. The buffet had just about same food at each sitting the entire cruise. Food definitely needs Improvement. I had my clothes dry cleaned and laundered but did not get them back until a day and a half later than I was told I would receive them. I missed one formal dinner due to lack of communication and services. Each time I go down to customer service I would be greeted by an employee who did not speak clear English and feel that many employees do not know the meaning of many important words in English to adequately help assist you. My internet was turned off and when I spoke to agent at desk she told me that it's totally my responsibility to know that MSC charges based on Gigabytes. I am old school and had no clue what Gigabytes meant. The young lady said that MSC cruise is not responsible for my internet service being interrupted and that I "should educate myself more before using the internet" I stayed calm and did not yell or shout at any employer on cruise ship. Went to purchase picture package and one gentleman working behind desk was rude and not willing to help or assist us. Thankfully, we found the young Asian man who took our photos and he was very kind, patient, and professional. Due to this man's demeanor we bought couple hundred dollars worth of photos instead of walking away after first experience with other worker. The shows are good but very repetitive. The comedy improv show was my favorite while on this cruise. The 4 comedians were very Funny and professional. I give the improv comedians a 5 star rating. Overall, was fun time but lack of communication and food choices really need to be improved. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This was our 5th cruise but our first MSC. We chose this cruise because it was a new ship and had many activities for our 2 boys (11&13). But did not know that there was an extra cost for zip lining, bowling or arcade room! We had the ... Read More
This was our 5th cruise but our first MSC. We chose this cruise because it was a new ship and had many activities for our 2 boys (11&13). But did not know that there was an extra cost for zip lining, bowling or arcade room! We had the Aurea pkg, which was a higher end pkg that they do not provide any longer so there was a lot of confusion on board. From the moment we stepped onto the ship we encountered small issues but were annoying. Staff was very pushy as we took our first steps on board in regards to specialty dining and drink pkgs! and continued through out the week. Ship was very understaffed, private functions constantly held at the sports bar and we could not enter. sports bar only had 4 draft beer out of a list of 17!!! Some staff were rude, if you spoke Spanish or were European you were treated and served quickly. Ship was very crowded, poor service at bars. My boys were turned away at captains dinner night because they were not in long pants(nice dress shorts and button up dress shirt) we later found out people were at dinner wearing shorts and jeans! My boys were last ones served at bar for ordering pop because they were kids, only served quickly when I was present. We were on 14th floor with balcony, nice room but very small bathroom especially shower. Entertainment was a mishmash of dancing, singing and acrobatics...no real theme. Michael Jackson night was better. We witnessed someone in a scooter be denied access off ship because too difficult to visit Island....so wrong! as well they have no priority disembarkation protocol for wheel chairs, people just pushed forward to get off. Thermal spa was fantastic. Embarkation & disembarkation was quick only because we had priority in both. MSC you are a beautiful ship but boy do you have a lot of learning to do!!! we have decided to take a break from cruising and once we return it will Be ROYAL CARRIBEAN. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I have very mixed feelings about my 4/27 cruise aboard the MSC Seaside (my first MSC cruise). I had great service and I had substandard service. I was impressed by the appearance of the ship and disappointed by inconsistent policies and ... Read More
I have very mixed feelings about my 4/27 cruise aboard the MSC Seaside (my first MSC cruise). I had great service and I had substandard service. I was impressed by the appearance of the ship and disappointed by inconsistent policies and procedures. Let's get the bad out of the way first. Food quality and selection. I am in no way what I would call a foodie, but I was highly disappointed in the quality of the food in the main dining room (I ate in the Ipanema dining room each night with friends so I can't speak to the pay dining venues). I have no argument with the quantity as some have complained about and I'm sure I came back heavier than when I embarked. There were 13 of us in my group and most were dissatisfied with their meals. Many were sent back and other selections ordered. Now the wait staff was outstanding. They were engaging, informative, and very accommodating to our many requests. Even the Maitre D' made it a point to have a good Greek salad prepared daily for one in my group after she complained about the first one she was brought. I had read reviews from other Seaside cruisers who complained about the lack of variety of the breakfast buffets so I wasn't surprised. There were salads and bread aplenty, but I would have appreciated some change in the menu. Some good Canadian bacon, or even English bacon would have been a nice addition. Other lines are able to provide a variety in the buffets. A minor nit for me involved the Customer Service desk. This being an Italian line, I figured I could easily exchange some left over Euros I had from a Mediterranean cruise I had taken. The desk rep had to call someone else and then told me I had to take a penalty to exchange the money. I declined, went to the Casino and had it exchanged in less than a minute with the exchange rate in my favor. With all the Europeans on board this must have come up before. The desk was going to give me $10 U.S. for my 15 Euros! The only other complaint, and it was minor, involved extremely slow service in the Sports bar. I, and others, were surprised at the lack of attention. I'm not normally invisible, but I was beginning to think so, especially when other customers who came later were served first. I surmised these workers were exhausted. I watched other cruisers walk out when they weren't served in a reasonable period. Now for the good. Unlike the Sports bar, the service in the Champagne Bar was excellent. So good, in fact, I stopped there daily even though champagne is not my normal drink of choice. They took the time to educate me on different varieties and make recommendations. More importantly, two workers engaged me lengthy conversation daily regarding my home, sailing experience, thoughts on the ship, and telling me about themselves. One of my best interactions in more than 20 cruises. What can I say about the Creperie and the Gelateria. The gelato was excellent. I wish I had discovered those locations earlier in the cruise. It helped that I had the Premium All Inclusive package. The Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle was also another plus. We didn't get some minor officers stuck with the job, we got the Captain himself and he took the time to tell us how important we were to the cruise line. He might not think so after reading the first half of this missive. Plenty of drinks and hors d'oeuvres were available. I thought this was one of the better events even though there wasn't a lot of roll call participation, or programs scheduled. Every roll call is different. Finally, the entertainment. I took in all but one of the shows in the main theater. Yes, we saw the same acts in each of the shows, but for the most part they were excellent. As advertised, the Michael Jackson finale was worth waiting for. I didn't see the opera some folks complained about. Kudos to those who informed me about the status match program (Gold), and about upgrading to the Premium All Inclusive program before the packages changed last year. I had a much better enjoyment factor than some of my friends who complained about paying for everything. LOL I upgraded in early December when I learned the program was changing. I had to personally call the customer service line to get the upgrade from DOU. It took two calls, but I got it done and got the old Deluxe All Inclusive package. No questions on board regarding gelato, crepes, minibar, or any other drinks. Bottom line, would I sail MSC again? I think so if the price was right. While I was disappointed in some aspects, I would try it again with lowered expectations. I may give the Meraviglia a try when it arrives knowing that some things would be different from what I'm used too. I would have to try the Specialty Dining package and buy the Premium Plus plan. Not so my friends. We talked at length about sailing the line again, but they were turned off by the food and lack of variety of the entertainment. I expect MSC to keep tweaking its programs as it tries to increase its presence in the North American market to better suit these customers. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I don't normally complain. We love cruising and being on the ocean. There was nothing absolutely horrible. Nothing great either. Service is slow and poor. Had to wait forever to be served at the bar, or flag down bar service who ... Read More
I don't normally complain. We love cruising and being on the ocean. There was nothing absolutely horrible. Nothing great either. Service is slow and poor. Had to wait forever to be served at the bar, or flag down bar service who always seemed irritated to be asked. The main dining service was awesome. We had wonderful servers and was the highlight of each day. Julius in the seaside lounge bar was the only great, kind, friendly bartender. None of the shows were good, except the Michael Jackson show. Comedy was all vulgar improv. The food was fine, but the salad bar was literally lettuce and shredded carrots. We saw our cabin steward once. He never cleaned our shower or bathroom floor. It was nasty by day 7. This was our second msc cruise. Both have had a theme of poor service. Hoping they can use these reviews to improve in the future, as their ships are beautiful. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I ended up on this cruise to celebrate my sister's 70th birthday. Young at heart, we wanted a cruise that suited our personalities. So with 25 adventurers ranging in age from 13 and up, MSC Seaside seemed perfect. Embarkation - ... Read More
I ended up on this cruise to celebrate my sister's 70th birthday. Young at heart, we wanted a cruise that suited our personalities. So with 25 adventurers ranging in age from 13 and up, MSC Seaside seemed perfect. Embarkation - It's a zoo. Imagine 5,000+ people trying to check-in. Our saving grace was the Aurea package (an upgrade). Trying to figure out where our check-in area was located was challenging. Once in line, a very nice young woman provided assistance. We returned to check-in three (3) times because our card didn't work. A non-walker's nightmare. Dining - The buffet, as one of our friends, said, "By the time you make it around the buffet to find what you want and get to your seat, your food is cold." Day 1: Try to get a soda from the pay as you go machine, good luck. Ridiculous. Sell drink cards like other ships. Organization of buffet, where is the jam? It's on the Wellness Bar. Where is the bread? It's next to desserts or sodas (depends). The staff working in the buffet area just stood around - no assistance unless you flagged someone. The staff in white uniforms - no purpose. The soda machine process, go figure. Evening dining -The dining room staff are unorganized. Try finding a waiter to take cocktail orders. The dining room show, yes we clapped for the staff but our waiters were working. Friendliness - No introductions, good morning, smile. What gives? I am a frequent cruiser, Princess, Viking, Royal Caribbean. This experience pales by comparison. The music, theatre shows, Aurea spa, and ship decor saved the day. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
MSC Seaside Review March 30 – Eastern Caribbean Miami – San Juan – St. Thomas – St. Marteen – Nassau – Miami Cabin: Inside Deck 12 - #12121 (I always try to get rooms with easy to remember numbers) The following is ... Read More
MSC Seaside Review March 30 – Eastern Caribbean Miami – San Juan – St. Thomas – St. Marteen – Nassau – Miami Cabin: Inside Deck 12 - #12121 (I always try to get rooms with easy to remember numbers) The following is my review of the MSC Seaside. This was my 132 cruise and although I’m high level on Celebrity, NCL, RCCL, HAL and Carnival, I’ve been intrigued by the Seaside’s design and was curious about the MSC line. MSC matched my loyalty level on NCL and gave me GOLD status (see their website for the loyalty match program) as an enticement for me to try the product. The reviews for this ship and the line have been iffy so I thought I’d take a chance as I’m a strong believer in the saying “there is no such thing as a bad cruise”. So off I went… EMARKATION I arrived at Terminal F Saturday morning at about 1:15 pm via UBER only to find the line to get into the terminal from the door of the terminal to the Celebrity terminal. I’ve never seen a line that long. At one point I considered taking a quick three-day cruise and I’d still have time to get on the Seaside, however, the line did move quickly, and we were inside the terminal in less than 30 minutes. Once inside there was a line for security where I was “psst’d” by a man in the jacket asking, “hey buddy, want to get in the quick line” and then asking me for money for allowing me that honor. UGH. Looking back, the regular line was just as quick. A quick trip upstairs to the check in area where, although a bit confusing, the lines went quick with many open reception desks. I got my room card, picture taken and boarding group number (14). From there a walk to the boarding area where we were met with another long line. I thought MSC meant “Me Standing Constantly” but again the line moved quickly. The speaker system shorts out in the boarding area near the photographers, so you need to move away from that area to hear everything. Within thirty minutes group 14 was called and I went on board. Overall a little more than an hour to get on board which is a decent time especially given the long lines experienced. The first thing I learned about this ship is that they know what they are doing even though it might not appear so .. just trust them. FIRST STEPS ON SEASIDE WOW. What a beautiful ship. The Atrium area is several stories and features a multi-level video screen. Each level has distinct bars. The ship has several elevators and except for embarkation, there was never really a long wait. I went to my room right away and dropped off my travel bag and then went off to explore some more. NCL’s oceanside concept is something I really enjoy (being so close to the water while having dinner or drinks). MSC has taken that experience to the next level. There is more deck space on this ship than I’ve seen on any ship next to an aircraft carrier. Each lounge chair had a built-in pillow as well. Of course, people hog the chairs close to the pools, but if you just wander a few steps around deck 6 you’ll find an open chair. The technology on this ship was tremendous. (I just got off Bliss in December, another new ship, and found Seaside to be like a Star Trek vessel). STAFF The crew takes great care of “their” ship. From the room steward to the performers to the bar staff .. everyone was polite and seemed to like their jobs. I did not speak to one crew member on the staff who said they would not return after their contract was up. That’s unheard of. They ALL keep asking what they can go to make things better. What made me sad was learning the servers make, in some cases, about $800 a month. That’s another topic but I do my best to help with tipping above and beyond as they really work hard for many hours each day. My room steward was Maria. She did a fine job, but she was invisible most of the trip. I guess that’s good. There are no towel animals on Seaside (at least not in my cabin) but I did not miss them. FOOD The first stop, as always, is the buffet. The Seaside buffet is in the back of the ship and is the same design as most new ships with a flow on both sides, front and back. I found the buffet on this ship to be very limited and quality issues were apparent. Somethings were cold that were supposed to be hot and other things vice versa. Nothing will make you want to skip the MDR for buffet on this ship. It served its purpose but barely. Since I was traveling solo on this trip, and thanks to NCL, I like only to dine at my own leisure, I only ate at the specialty restaurants. There are five on board on level 16. The Pan Asian restaurant also features a sushi bar and a Japanese Hibachi. On the other side of the ship there is Butcher’s Cut and Ocean Cay. The Seaside also offers a Chef’s Table, but I did not try it. I purchased two of the three meal specialty restaurant experiences. I highly recommend the Pan Asian restaurant and Teppanyaki. I ate at both twice. The meal at Butcher’s Cut was very basic – not bad, but not great. The worst meal was at Ocean Cay. If I’m going to pay money for a specialty restaurant, I’d better get something I can’t get at the buffet. At Ocean Cay the entrée was a filet of sea bass and mashed potatoes. The menu is going to change to include shrimp, crab and other seafood dishes. Also, at Ocean Cay only about half the menu was available without a surcharge. Again, a work in progress. The ship has a incredible coffee/ice cream bar. Worth stopping for a treat once a day (or more). If you like your coffee, try getting a cappuccino or latte each morning at one of the bars. The coffee at the buffet was horrible. I asked several passengers about the MDR and didn’t hear many complaints other than some nights the dinner took over two hours. Same complaints from other ships. CASINO I played slots mostly this cruise and found the machines to be the same as most lines. As is with most casinos, you earn points with each pull of the slot machine. The prizes however are horrible. I ended up with over 2000 points and I was offered four Styrofoam key chains for 400 points each. Think $400 worth of slot pulls. HORRIBLE. The casino is much smaller than any other ship I’ve been on so far. Many of the slot machines feature multiple games. There are no Texas Hold’em table games. EXTRAS Easy Drink Package (NAY) The EASY drink package was advertised as non-alcoholic beverages (soda, blended drinks, bottled water), coffee delights, hot chocolate delights, ice cream drinks and select spirits and wine. This package confused everyone. Some nights things were included and others the same drinks were an extra charge (which I refused). The coffee, chocolate and ice cream options were also mixed in availability. When I did get a drink from the Easy Package Drink menu it was very basic and weak. Check how many drinks you get with your package (my cruise came with 12 drinks) to see if you really need the drink package. Remember, you don’t get drinks at the restaurants other than tap water. The self-serve soda, wine and beer machines at the buffet were accessible with this package but only worked half time. Another work in progress. Thermal SPA Pass (NAY) The SPA is WOW at first. From the sensory steam (light and dark) to the wind effect showers and snow room, when you first enter you don’t think you’re on a cruise ship. Another reason you don’t feel you are on a cruise ship is that there are NO WINDOWS. It’s so dark, you can’t read a book or enjoy a magazine. Half the reason I go to the spa area is to find a quiet place to read. This SPA is good for one visit, but not the whole cruise. Internet Pass (YAY) I opted for the unlimited internet and I think I used it to the max. Part of me really hates having access to the internet while I’m on vacation but I found that I relax more having the access as I can take care of things that come up with work immediately. The package disclaimers say it’s not fast enough to stream video, but I was able to watch any shows that I tried. I would get the internet package again. CONS The bathroom in my cabin was almost unusable. How the toilet is placed makes it impossible to move your legs if you have long legs. Let’s just say if I had to so more than pee, I had to go elsewhere. After three days of just not making it a big deal, I finally visited the guest services desk to say something. I had thirty-minute conversation with three different people and got the generic, we are sorry about your experience, however all the staterooms in the Fantastica category are like that. Many have complained about it. I could see this being a HUGE problem with anyone with mobility issues. I made the most of it but it’s a major design flaw that needs to be addressed on new builds. The solution is simple carpentry to fix the problem on Seaside (cutting out space underneath the sink). I had a pass to the spa so I really just timed my bathroom breaks to avoid being in my cabin when the time arouse. The major issue I had with the entire situation was the lack of follow up. Those damn tablets the bar/restaurant servers used. Either the staff needs more training or whatever app they are using doesn’t work. I realize the need for efficiency, but order placing shouldn’t take so much time and show so much frustration on the part of the staff. The tablets need to be tossed into the dumpsters at the next port. The cause nothing but problems. PROS The Wine and Cocktail bar on deck 16 (in the specialty restaurant area) was the best bar on the ship. The two main bartenders, KiKi and Alex (both from South Africa) were AMAZING! (Yes, capital letters, as they made my evening and we’d set up camp at the bar there for several hours). Gene the cruise director, former HAL czar of Cruise Directors, was very personable and professional. He was fun to talk to and always seemed to have time to speak with you without it feeling rushed. Captain LaPalma was also the consummate gentleman. Besides speaking every language on earth, at least it seemed so, he was also very interested in how the cruise was going what MSC needed to do to improve the experience. The entertainment was better than expected, but not awesome. Five of the nights the onboard ensemble would perform a 45 minutes show twice. Each show features vocals, dancing, aerobatics, comedy, juggling and other circus type acts. The costumes, performers and sets were all very good. I made it a point to see all the shows and each time the shows ended with standing ovations. Again, they made the most of the limited time they were given, but not equal to the Broadway style shows on other lines. Water Slides were free and fun! DISEMBARKATION I chose the Express option and carried by own bags. On most other cruises I as in the minority choosing this option given it’s 7AM time. Not on Seaside. Seems most of the passengers wanted to get off as soon as possible. Those lines that were present at embarkation resurfaced again but, as was the pattern, the lines moved quickly. I was off the ship by 7:45 and in the UBER heading to a great hotel “The Gabriel” just across the bridge in downtown Miami. OVERALL On my scale of champagne glasses (1 to 5), I’ll give this cruise three glasses of bubbly. I loved the ship. The deck space, design, cleanliness and operations are a 5. Everything else is a work in progress. With more new ships on order than any other cruise line, MSC is investing heavy in the US market and they know they need to change their product in order to draw and keep US customers. Let’s check back in a year and see what’s been changed. If the service and food could match the ship, the product would be one of the best in the industry. That’s a big IF though! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We cruised on MSC Divina in the past and loved it, even recommending to friends for the value and more upscale experience than we’ve had on other lines. This 7-day cruise to Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Maarten and Nassau was not the ... Read More
We cruised on MSC Divina in the past and loved it, even recommending to friends for the value and more upscale experience than we’ve had on other lines. This 7-day cruise to Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Maarten and Nassau was not the same. The good - salt water pool (although tiny), fine dining and buffet, and the family offerings seemed good - a jungle pool, slides, race car simulator, and bowling alley. The bad - room plumbing problems and smell issues the entire cruise, stained shower curtain, worn bedding (both of which they fixed when requested), and very slow embark and disembarking. Also, one excursion was spent mostly in lines rather than at the beach. Regarding excursions, There are two for Maho Beach. One is just scenic, and then other includes beach time. I’m so glad we didn’t do the latter. The beach was small and flooded with people. They were packed on the beach like sardines. We got to see an airplane pass right over our bus though, so I was happy about that! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Check in was quick, although we were not advised on using our VIP status, and just told to go and wait in the waiting room. Extremely cold and very loud, during the wait. Once boarded, we were swamped immediately by sales...beverage ... Read More
Check in was quick, although we were not advised on using our VIP status, and just told to go and wait in the waiting room. Extremely cold and very loud, during the wait. Once boarded, we were swamped immediately by sales...beverage packages, dining packages, photos...no one volunteered where the dining was. Found our way. The ship is very shiny and sparkly. Food was average and service was well below average. Self service beverages in buffet...4 wine dispensers, each with a red and a white tap. None dispensed both. 4 taps for beer, one was light. 2 kegs were empty by 3rd day and not replenished. Went from lots of "glasses" to no disposable, then no tumblers ( for soda) then, people using beer glasses for all beverages and finally, by the end of the week, only wine glasses were in evidence. Lots of staff walking around in the dining area but not helping with any dining experience. Finding out which beverage were part of our package was a joke. Lines at guest services were ridiculous, most of the time. I was quite surprised, when attending the Cruise Critic "party" how many kids were there running around. It was nice to meet some of the senior staff. Each staff member we spoke with made us feel very welcome. Kids were at the "food tasting" as well. Kids should not be allowed at these adult functions. The adults pool...small and well monitored to ensure that children were not in/around it. However, there were smokers EVERYWHERE around the pool. The ship could use a cleaning. There were fingerprints and dust that were in the same place all week. There is NO self serve laundry or irons. The cabins are a decent size. Could use more hangers in the closet. Which, like everyone says, are in an awkward spot. Beds are comfy and bathroom was nice. Loved the abundance of outdoor space. Kudos on this! Loved the status match. Loved the easy "black card" embarkation at ports. And the welcome when we were docked next to the TUI ship. All that singing and dancing at the gangway...well done, MSC. You should have seen the guests on that ship, as well as staff, coming to watch what was going on. We were given a "chocolate Seaside" as a gift and put it in the minifridge to keep it cool. Who was to know it got locked in the final night and we had to leave it behind. All in all...I am a huge believer in "you get what you pay for" and we did. For the same $$ I would cruise MSC again:) Entertainment was great. Michael Jackson...we have seen hundreds of these shows all over the Caribbean but this one was SO good, I got goosebumps and tears in my eyes! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We got a good deal from Australia and have been on about 3 cruises previously. This ship was too big for our tastes with over 5000 people. We also felt the communal areas where too all over the place with no real centre. The bars ... Read More
We got a good deal from Australia and have been on about 3 cruises previously. This ship was too big for our tastes with over 5000 people. We also felt the communal areas where too all over the place with no real centre. The bars were under staffed and the cabin wasn’t serviced well enough. We loved all 4 ports and 4 on a 7 day cruise is good. The ports were all accessible and vibrant. The dining experience was average to good but certainly not up to our previous experience with Royal Caribbean. The entertainment was good, the shows were very professional. He embarkation was the best we’ve ever experienced, 10/10 for a smooth and speedy process! The gratuities are annoying but not compulsory, we got a drinks package just to avoid all that for every bar visit! We got our moneys worth at $35 per head per day for a basic package which covered our needs. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
This was a free cruise for me so I took my grand daughter and her best friend, This is just my opinion, everyone has there own. MSC does not do designated times check in so you have the zig zag line to wait in a couple of times. ... Read More
This was a free cruise for me so I took my grand daughter and her best friend, This is just my opinion, everyone has there own. MSC does not do designated times check in so you have the zig zag line to wait in a couple of times. Took us a little over an hour to get all checked in and onboard. Did not want our picture taken before boarding but they would not allow us to just walk around it and made us do the picture. Later they sent them to our room with a folder that if you didn't want them you had to check the NO box and give back to room steward or they would charge you for them. We did check the NO box and gave back to our steward almost immediately but they still charged us. In order to put cash on your account you must visit the customer service desk, of course that line the first day and a half was much to long so I waited till later the first full day and it wasn't so bad. The room was ok, just as I expected as per other cruise lines however I think the bathroom was smaller and could have a better layout for more space. The lights only work with your card in the slot by the door, tried other kinds of cards and they would not work. No wash cloths so you will have to ask for them. No bar soap in the bathroom either just liquid soap. Using the liquid soap with washcloth doesn't really work very well so I bought a luffa at port. We ate at the MDR each night. I thought the food was very good but the presentation could have been better. Selections were good but I prefer having at least one new exotic thing to try each night which I did not see on the menu. The first night you had to find your table so the line was a little long but every night after you just walked to your table and sat down. I do not remember any sail away party, maybe I just missed it. I had to make about 7 trips to the customer service to get things straight. Linking your credit card was very easy at the kiosk. Now on to the casino. The casino was smaller that I am used to. I don't play table games but did notice that there is no craps table and not a whole lot of other table games. I am a smoker when gambling. The smoking section is back side of the slot area, there is a sign designating this. Also, you are not allowed to smoke anywhere in the casino when the ship is in port. Ashtrays are very hard to find when you can smoke. A good deal of the machines you are able to change the denomination to whatever you like. There were alot of hand pays won for the size of this casino. I won a major worth $910.00. Another passenger won $11,500.00, another $4.500.00 and a lot of hand pays that were above $1,000.00. The casino closes every night at 2:00am. The drink servers were very good and quick. Of course on sea days the casino was very crowded so it was a little slower at this time. All of the casino staff was wonderful, I can't praise them enough. 9,999 points gets you a free inside for two, upgrade to OV was like $359 but since I didn't qualify for this I don't know the other amounts for sure. I think the fee to upgrade to balcony was over $1,100.00 We went to two different shows, the most popular was Starwalker (Michael Jackson), we reserved on our first night and ended up standing the whole show because they don't check when you enter whether or not you have reserved so the seating was not sufficient. Get there early to get your seat even if you reserved. We got there just before the show started. I purchased the fun pass before hand for $100 and received $160 credit. Zip line was $10 each, 5D was $10 each, F! simulator was $10 each which seemed to be very popular most of the week. Air hockey and both racing games were $1.50 each. Any game that you could win a prize was not included in the fun pass so beware. There were 2 bowling lanes which we did not try. I was not very pleased with the customer service area, they kept messing up our accounts and I had to make to many trips there to straighten things out. Most of them were nice but there were a few that need to be taught customer service skills again. Having to go the customer service to close out your cash account on the last day was not very pleasing because the lines were very long. If there is any balance on your account at debarkation you will not be allowed to debark and have to go to customer service to take care of. We were charged for something in one of the stores that we never received. They were supposed to have credited it back but never did so we were denied debarking. If there is anything you would like to know just ask and I will try to answer. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
The 1st Thing I must say is that it was a beautiful boat and the staff that was there were very hard workers. Another pro was that they were many activities all different ages. Unfortunately there were too many negatives for me to ... Read More
The 1st Thing I must say is that it was a beautiful boat and the staff that was there were very hard workers. Another pro was that they were many activities all different ages. Unfortunately there were too many negatives for me to ever go back on and MSC line. The company has to invest in 2 very important things much more staff since this since ship is very very big And the food in the main dining Room was tasteless and staff unorganized since the matre'd himself was unorganized. The food in the specialized dining was very good and that's how all the food should be. The butchers cut and asian fusion were excellent. Seafood ok. The noise from the habatchi was very annoying to many in the dining area of the Asian dining area. Also with only 2 photograpers we had NO photos taken except for the ones we posed for. I guess you get what you pay for. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I would have given MSC Seaside a higher rating but for the day before disembarking I found a bar (from the Miami Beach pool) on my tab. Not only did I never go up there, but I also had the beverage package. Being the last evening, I had ... Read More
I would have given MSC Seaside a higher rating but for the day before disembarking I found a bar (from the Miami Beach pool) on my tab. Not only did I never go up there, but I also had the beverage package. Being the last evening, I had to stand in line for nearly an hour at guest services. There was actually a paper bill they could print, with two drinks on it and a squilly line for a signature. They knew this was not my signature but how uncomfortable I was. They only thing they could think was when my card was demagnetized early on, I receieved a replacement and obviously my original card was not destroyed. On the positive, most staff were wonderful. I enjoyed the shows immensely, however, they were pretty much the same night after night with just costume and set changes. Michael Jackson show was over the top great. I was pleased with the food. Yes as other have said, nothing changed in the buffet, ever. But it was good. Anything Italian seems to surpass other ships (pasta, tiramasu, breads). Since it was spring break I avoided going up to the main pool deck or buffet on 16 (which was rarely open anyway) Because of that, I didn't feel the presence of 5000 passengers. The adult pool on Deck 8 was fine most days, but on sea days it did get crowded. The wifi worked fine and the wine with the basic package was not very good. They do seem to have quite a good program for children, although I was solo. I had a status match to Black and was impressed by how well they recognize their loyalty clientele. Lots of get togethers and meeting the captain, whom was very nice and visible. As a solo, having a joint singles & solo meet, unhosted, every night at dinnertime (5:30) in a bar that ONLY serves Champagne brought no one on the nights I made an appearance. While the other type groups were offered better times and a bar where passengers could get any type of drink. The champage bar only offers that, champage. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
2 week cruise. We arrived in Miami and boarded the ship. Embarkation was smooth after a long journey. That was appreciated. Didn’t like the mandatory photo as we arrived on board. We looked awful after such a long journey. The ship ... Read More
2 week cruise. We arrived in Miami and boarded the ship. Embarkation was smooth after a long journey. That was appreciated. Didn’t like the mandatory photo as we arrived on board. We looked awful after such a long journey. The ship was beautiful and staff did an immense job keeping it clean. The ship was so glamorous. We enjoyed that. We felt privileged. The cabin, IMO, was somewhat tired and unclean. The vent was coming away from the wall and bits were poking from the corners of the wardrobe. The sofa was stained after heavy use. It wasn’t the quality I was expecting. We had to clean the drawers and wardrobe as bits of rubbish and crumbs were left from the last guest. Under the bed could’ve been hoovered also. The headboard had inches of dust gathered and the carpet was full of sand and dirt, it looked so dull. The balcony was covered in salt. We had a lot to clean before we unpacked. Our neighbours had similar issues and they showed me their towel. It was black with dirt. So we gathered these cabins already needed a mini face lift. Our maid hoovered and cleaned the next day and after that we did not have to clean again as she kept it really tidy but then we are not messy and ensure we did not leave a mess. We were fantastica level. Our first dining time was 9.15pm. We were told by our travel agent we could change it when we booked. We could not until the 2nd week. The entertainment was amazing. That was a welcome treat. So sophisticated. We enjoyed every show. Seats were comfy too and it was always clean. We absolutely loved the dance classes in the Haven lounge and the onboard impromptu dancers. Always something to see and do. White party was a lot of fun. The bar service was atrocious. We struggled to get a drink in the evening. We were glad we didn’t buy a drinks package. More staff is needed. I didn’t enjoy the cocktails. Too sweet and some are ready made. My beloved stuck to LIITea. The chocolate martini was a revelation. The port excursions, we gathered, was just a way to obtain money from cruisers once ashore. We chose mostly panoramic tours which were pretty much the same at each port. A drive round the island, witnessed poverty and devastation and taken to over priced gift shops where we were expected to haggle for a good price. Mostly were over priced. The port sides were mostly manufactured for cruisers and felt and looked fake. Some were better than others. Most parts of the beaches were private and you needed to pay an entry then another fee for the sun bed and umbrella. Could cost you $70 before you even buy a drink. Photos were a disaster. They photo shopped the life out of my partners handsome face. We were devastated. We prefer the natural look. The queues for the photo were somewhat long and tiresome. We could not see any roving photographers and had to go hunting for them. The photo desk was absolutely abysmal. No organisation whatsoever. We cancelled our photo package. In general we will do another cruise but 1 week as opposed to 2 weeks as certain aspects of the cruise we didn’t enjoy but that was no fault of MSC. Such as people and food wastage. Why take 3 boiled eggs and not eat any? Why do people take so much food only for them to leave most of it on their plates? Crazy. Read Less
MSC Seaside Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 3.9
Dining 4.5 3.4
Entertainment 4.5 3.9
Public Rooms 4.5 3.9
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.8
Family 5.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.4
Enrichment 3.5 3.4
Service 4.0 3.6
Value For Money 4.0 3.7

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