My husband and I just spent a week on the MSC Meriviglia with 6 of our friends. This was in total cruise number 53 for me, but my first with MSC. Still putting all of my thoughts together but wanted to write a short review while it is all fresh in my mind. We stayed in balcony cabin 12161. Near the elevator, and very quiet. A few kids running once in a while, but not too bad. In the middle of the ship so it was easy to go anywhere we wanted.
The ship was absolutely beautiful, and the Promenade was very nice with the restaurants, shops, chocolate store and various bars. I was amazed at how clean the ship was, and you would be hard pressed to find a bit of rust anywhere. Our balcony was a good size, and our cabin steward was efficient and kept our room spotless. One of our friends in my group was not so lucky as there were a few days when their cabin was not serviced at all. When they questioned this, they were told it was because he ran out of time.
We had the Easy Drink Package but upgraded to the Premium package once on the ship. $215.00 for the upgrade. It was on my husband's card, but he was able to get drinks for me as well on the Premium list. The crew in the bar areas were all very pleasant and always had a smile when we saw them.
Crew in the dining room was not so friendly. Our head waiter, Augus, was attentive although busy. His assistant staff was not so good, with one of the girls going so far as to roll her eyes when we asked for some Tabasco sauce. We only ate dinner in the dining room twice, the first two nights. We tried breakfast on the second morning but went to the buffet every morning after that. We actually loved the food up in the Lido area. A lot of choices, food always hot, and very delicious.
Speaking of food, we bought the Tryptic Dining Package: Butcher's Cut, Ocean Cay Seafood, and Kaito. While the food was delicious and well-prepared we were shocked that our menu choices were so limited. For the most part we were all satisfied with our choices, but some dishes that were on the limited menu were just downright awful. However, the staff was quick to allow for a change in the selection. The biggest drawback was the very rude and very obnoxious sommelier in the Butcher's Cut restaurant. When we asked his name, he actually covered up his name tag and refused to give us his name. We found out that he had only been on the ship a week. Hopefully he will either get with the program or realize that he is in the wrong profession.
We went to the Cique du Soliel show, Sonor. It was out of this world phenomenal! Our package included dinner, which was so yucky that after the show we all went up to the buffet...LOL.
The casino was fun, and only very smoky one night. Most of the time it was tolerable. There are a few non-smoking machines, but as they are near the smoking machines it is a moot point.
The MSC app and internet package worked quite well, and allowed us to stay in touch with each other through FB Messenger. It was nice to be able to pull up activities, billing, and other information.
We did not make it to any of the shows as we were not aware that we needed to make reservations. Every time we thought about it there were no seats left.
I can't really comment on the ports as we stayed on the ship all week. We stopped at Costa Maya, Belize, and Roatán. We were supposed to stop at the new port of Ocean Cay, but the water was too rough to do so and we had an extra sea day.
One of the bad things that happened during our week was we had no hot water for two days. None. Zero. Zip. Made it difficult to shower! Thankfully my hair is short so I was able to wash it in the sink. Even still...Brrr! The other issue was a language issue. I don't mind the announcements in several languages. I have no problem cruising with so many people from other countries. Our main problems were with the crew and even the staff. We had a hard time when we asked questions. Being that this was our first MSC cruise, we did have a question here and there.
All in all it was a good week. Will I book another MSC cruise? Yes, but maybe not right away. We had fun, but nothing stood out to make it a new favorite cruise line. I have read on this Board that there are other ships in the MSC line that we should try that are better than the Meriviglia. Maybe we will try another ship and see how it compares. After all, I was on a cruise, being catered to and getting some much needed R&R.
Any questions let me know!