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flumpa

Honest Divina Review 12/20-12/30 cruise

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FIrst time cruise on MSC Divina 12/20-12/30. I read many mixed reviews prior to going and decided to have an open mind on this trip. I will try to be comprehensive in my review:

Embarkation was super easy! We drove to Miami - dropped luggage off curbside and parked in the terminal. Parking is $22 per day which we didn't mind because of convenience. We arrived on the later side (3:00pm) to avoid long lines of those wanting to get on early. No wait whatsoever - got room cards and we were able to get in our room right away. We were able to register our credit card later that evening when lines we not long. It was a very easy process.

Balcony Fantastica room on deck 12 - cabin was spacious. I thought the bathroom was designed well with the shower doors closing on the inside to free up space. Lots of storage in the bathroom for toiletries - more so than in the rest of the cabin. We removed the life jackets and stored them under the bed for shelf space - however there was not a lot of drawers for clothes. The closet was big with a lot of room for hanging clothes but it could have been half the size with more shelving and drawers. Tip bring extension cords. There were only two US outlets by the desk (2 more if you had converters). The outlet in our bathroom did not work. Brought my own hairdryer but found one in the desk drawer 5 days into the cruise. TV channels in multiple languages. We had ESPN although it was odd watching a football game since the announcers were muted out. One channel had American movies (Harry Potter was on frequently). When in cabin we watched TRU TV channel. Shows were in English, commercials were in Spanish, and sometimes shows were switched to Spanish. 

Cabin steward was low key and we rarely saw him. He did a great job cleaning the cabin and turn down service. I left him a note to keep our mini fridge stocked with sodas, waters, etc. Everyday it was well stocked with drinks plus pringles and assorted nuts. Room service menu was bland so we never ordered with the exception of breakfast one day. We ordered scrambled eggs, an omelet, and waffles - got 3 omelets instead but didn't bother calling about it. Turns out we were charged $7.95 although I thought it was included in our room. Information about the charge needs to be clear as we assumed breakfast was part of our package. It was not worth it to stand in line at guest relations to question the charge so we let it go.

Overall the ship is very pretty with a lots of lounge spaces. Main pool was always crowded with those that save deck chairs early in the morning. That didn't bother us since we live in the sun year round and don't need to be poolside. To access the gym you have to go through the spa as it did not have a separate entrance. We only went twice. It was crowded on the the two sea days and they did not have anything to wipe equipment down after each use which I found unsanitary.

Buffett was overwhelming at first but after you figure out where everything is you get the hang of it.  My husband enjoyed the variety of food offered and my son lived on pizza and French fries. I personally did not enjoy the Buffett since I could not find a chicken breast (only twice out of 10 days) and I thought the salad bar was lacking. There were a lot of pasta dishes and the bread was delicious. The offerings got to be repetitive but that is expected. The other thing is late night the only food available is pizza and dessert. I did not think the desserts were great and was disappointed that there were no cannolis!

Theatre shows were just ok. The first night show was an introduction to all of the various acts and was probably the best. I did not expect broadway but they certainly could use some improvement and they were underwhelming to say the least. No set changes - just stairs that changed colors, same dance routines (need a choreographer), and costumes that looked old. The tribute to Frank Sinatra was what did us in. Even though we knew the words to the songs we couldn't understand the singers. The Christmas tribute was nothing more than the Witches of Paris with some Christmas songs thrown in - very disappointing and we stopped going to the shows after that. I must say that although I'm not a fan of Opera - that was probably the best act.

Entertainment staff- I found that overall there was not much engagement with the guests to make things fun with the exception of Marlin and Lei! At night they tried to get guests to dance but I did not find them to be 'fun'. The cruise director was never around - only at night to introduce the evening show and one other time towards the end of the cruise for the evening quest game. I think the lack of fun trickles down to the staff since the cruise director was basically non existent.

Main dining room- we had early dinner at 6 pm in the black crab. The first night we went was on the first sea day which was elegant night.  Getting into the dining room was a madhouse! Everybody was lined up like cattle being corralled in - not exactly classy or elegant. Since we didn't know where our table was we had to locate a random waiter to show us the way. Our table was in the back and were we seated with another family of four. When I say we were in the back, I mean literally in the back and I could not move my chair because it was shoved in a corner with no space. Our waitress came and started asking for our order before asking us for drinks.  Dinner took almost 2 hours. Since we cruise on NCL we are not used to sitting with strangers and did not enjoy the lack of privacy dinning with another family. 

Speciality restuarants -we ate at Eataly and it was the best meal. I had no problem making reservations and even had to change them because I made it on the wrong day and time! We ordered ala cart and everything was delicious. Our son had the pizza and he said the Buffett pizza was better. I was disappointed in only having two specialty restuarants to choose from. Since we did not enjoy the main dining room experience we would have eaten at other restuarants if available. The other choice was galaxy sushi and our son does not eat that so we opted out of making a reservation there.

The staff- overall I found them to be lovely. Most were friendly and accommodating. We got to know a few waitresses and bar tenders and they went above and beyond even before we tipped them. We had the upgrade to all incl deluxe (booked before the beverage package changes). Had no problem getting premium wines, liquors, frozen and mixed drinks, and specialty coffees with chocolates. On the first day, we had an issue ordering gelato by the pool and was told we would be charged. On the second day we tried again in the Piazza bar and had no problem. When I asked why I couldn't get it outside, the waiter explained that the new staff don't understand the codes. He got me sticker for my card that said gelato included and I never had a problem after that. Although the pool side gelato staff were not as friendly because they were super busy with the outside bar. Also, I was told crepes were removed entirely. Not sure where they used to be served but we could not get them even for a charge. 

Disembarkation- was a breeze. We only received four luggage tags even though we had five suitcases. We decided to just walk off with our smaller one instead of standing on line for more tags. We had red tags and left the ship at 8:30. I was afraid we would not find out suitcases in the warehouse, but had no problems! We were in our car in the parking garage by 9:00 am. Very fast!

Finally, we booked this cruise for value and the longer intinarary and you get what you pay for. MSC misses the mark on many small things and they add up in the long run. We typically love sea days because there is so much to do and we ended up dreading the last two days of our trip. If we were given an option to book another cruise no matter how inexpensive it was, we would not return to MSC. This cruise was basically a vessel to get to point A from point B with nothing other than that. Some of the things that bothered us:

There is not much to do. Bingo is held outside by the pool which makes it impossible to participate unless you reserved chairs early (it could have been in the black and white lounge and more people would join).  The entertainment is lacking between the hours of 4:30-10:30 pm! It seems everything revolves around the main dining room times and the evening shows and there is nothing in between. And in the rare chance there is something scheduled it conflicts with something else. There were only three interactive guest shows (Mr. sexy legs, men vs women and quest). Every night there should have been something. Karaoke starts very late at 10:30 and only lasts an hour. It was in the galaxy disco which was too small and crowded. They did not utilize the lounges and spaces well with various entertainment aside from piano and singers. Trivia was held twice a day at inconvenient times and there could have been more offerings. We found ourselves sitting around waiting for time to pass! I also didn't understand the various pictures stations that got in the way of seating. The seating in the black and white lounge was set up like you were on a roller coaster or train - with everyone looking forward at the stage instead around at the dance floor. We eventually moved our couch to face the dance floor and one day we were told we couldn't move it - but we did anyway. Others around us starting moving their couches too. It is just not set up as friendly and inviting. When I say we were inundated with request for pictures is an understatement. I have never seen so many people posing in my life! The sports bar become a spot to be since you can order food, however the mozzarella sticks were rationed out each day and they would run out by 4 pm. So silly! The noise from the bowling became irritating and many kids were running around up and down the bowling alley and not sharing for others waiting to play. The TV sound in the sports bar became a major issue since the bar tender had to call IT and did not have control of the TVs. We had to complain at guest services twice before they finally put sound on for the college bowl games. Upper management did very little to empower staff to  prevent problems or complaints and the answer at guest services was 'welcome to Italian style crusing'. It seems there is high turnover as many of the staff either were new or said there were not returning once their contract is up. Overall I felt the ambiance of the ship to be cold and unfriendly in terms of interaction with everyone gathering by themselves. Many of the people we met (American's) were frustrated, bored, and couldn't wait for the cruise to be over. The last two days, my husband got a cold. They don't reinforce the hand sanitizer - we are used to someone outside the Buffett spraying everyone's hands who entered saying 'washy washy'. Guests would take things from the buffet without tongs (this is not exclusive to MSC by the way). The major issue I had was I did not see any of the workers handling food at the buffet wear gloves and people filled up their personal cups and water bottles from beverage stations. By the end of 10 days, I was completely grossed out. The style of dress was mixed with elegant, casual, etc and that never bothered us. However, I don't think the dress code is enforced in the main dining room which is fine since I don't think the dining is really fine dining at all. It is more like family style dining not exactly high class. The other thing I did not like was the lack of outside eating options. There was not a smaller Buffett outside by the pool or in the aft garden bar. You had to traipse through the buffet to get outside with your food and it would be cold. One last tip - if you want to buy pictures get them the last day. I think they were half off but there are major crowds. The issue I had with the pictures was that you could not mix and match from events - say I wanted one picture from the dining room and one from elegant night, I could not purchase them unless I bought the package. It was too confusing for me to understand and in the end, I did not buy any. We did not find getting back on the ship after a day in port exciting. Only one day, staff were out dancing with music greeting guests back on board. One day they had cold towels and I never saw any cold drinks offered. There were two lines to get back on board, that merged into one person scanning guest cards - instead of two people. It is the little things. We also only had one towel animal at night - which isn't a big deal but again, we looked forward to seeing them since they are silly and made you smile. I also don't recommend ordering the bon voyage package. It was for a bottle of prosecco, tray of canapés, and fresh fruit delivered to your room daily. The prosecco and canapés were fine however I thought the fruit would be cut up cantaloupe, honeydew melon, watermelon, pineapples, and strawberries. The fruit was literally a bowl of fruit - a banana, apple, orange, and a plum and was disappointing that I even spent money on that. I had to tell them to stop sending the fruit after a few days.

In the end, we just wanted the cruise to be over. If it was just my husband and I, maybe our experience would have been different since we would just sit at the bars and drink. But traveling with our 16 year old son (who does not go to the teen clubs) we found it to be boring - it lacked entertainment, high quality theater shows and overall was not fun. Most of the comments we heard were the same and it instilled the love of other cruise lines - especially first time MSC cruisers. We would rather go back to NCL, pay more, and have a better time than a longer intinaray with a no frills cruise. We are loyal to NCL and have read reviews that people didn't like that cruise line, so every review is subjective to someone's experience and expectations. We figured how bad could MSC be since we are not complainers and very laid back. Ultimately we were very disappointed in our cruise experience with MSC and wanted to share my personal experience.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the review.  Just to give a bit of perspective -  what other cruise lines have you sailed with?  MSC certainly seems to draw polarizing reviews, with US pax trending more to the negative side.  I've sailed on Celebrity, Princess and Azamara.  I'm going to give MSC a try in Sept.  I've booked Yacht Club.  Having read many CC reviews on MSC it seems YC is a considerable upgrade from the other experiences and represents a great value.  VALUE is a tricky word as it is very subjective.  I have no idea what to expect.  You never really know until you try.  I hope my experience is better than yours, but if not I'll join you in the one-and-done club.

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I bet that was a great review.  Unfortunately the lack of spacing and white space made it too difficult to read, which is a shame as you obviously put a good deal of thought and energy into it.  But walls of text are almost impenetrable.

I also have a question about your thread title.  Are your other reviews NOT honest?  Or do you think Divina reviews in general are not honest? 😉

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13 minutes ago, Toofarfromthesea said:

I bet that was a great review.  Unfortunately the lack of spacing and white space made it too difficult to read, which is a shame as you obviously put a good deal of thought and energy into it.  But walls of text are almost impenetrable.

I also have a question about your thread title.  Are your other reviews NOT honest?  Or do you think Divina reviews in general are not honest? 😉

In defense of the OP......  I think there were paragraphs intended.  The issue is that a single Enter doesn't give a paragraph space on CC.  You need to hit enter twice to get the space.  I can see people who are use to using a word processor make this mistake.  Still, I agree that the resulting "wall of text" is a real problem.

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31 minutes ago, Toofarfromthesea said:

I bet that was a great review.  Unfortunately the lack of spacing and white space made it too difficult to read, which is a shame as you obviously put a good deal of thought and energy into it.  But walls of text are almost impenetrable.

I also have a question about your thread title.  Are your other reviews NOT honest?  Or do you think Divina reviews in general are not honest? 😉

True I intended spacing by just entering one space in between paragraphs but it clearly did not come out when I posted and since there is no way to edit after I posted it, I couldn't fix it! Oops!

 

I have never posted a review of a cruise before but I felt the need to post a comprehensive and honest one after my experience with MSC especially after reading so many mixed reviews!  For me it was a one and done cruise but all reviews are subjective to someone's expectations and prior experiences. 🙂 

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1 hour ago, mnocket said:

Thanks for the review.  Just to give a bit of perspective -  what other cruise lines have you sailed with?  MSC certainly seems to draw polarizing reviews, with US pax trending more to the negative side.  I've sailed on Celebrity, Princess and Azamara.  I'm going to give MSC a try in Sept.  I've booked Yacht Club.  Having read many CC reviews on MSC it seems YC is a considerable upgrade from the other experiences and represents a great value.  VALUE is a tricky word as it is very subjective.  I have no idea what to expect.  You never really know until you try.  I hope my experience is better than yours, but if not I'll join you in the one-and-done club.

I have sailed RC, princess, celebrity, & NCL (haven). Overall the value for me is not worth the entire experience. I would rather pay more for better entertainment and more things to do on board. I prefer 'my style' cruising (eat when you want, dress how you want, etc) so I'm back to NCL for the future. Good luck and I hope you have a better experience! 

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You didn't miss anything with the lack of crepes.  There used to be a Nutella stand on the Lido deck, where they would reheat (probably frozen) crepes and spread Nutella on them.  I ordered one once and it ended up in the trash can.

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Dear Flu, Agreed with most of your 'honest' review. We were on the same cruise with you. Firstly ,do not try to advise passengers to bring extension cords, some cruise lines will confiscate when you go through X-ray machines. I do not know why, picked it up at a table  on way home. We enjoyed the entertainment, it was a lot like Lawrence Welk for us. We walked out of the Traviata performance. We expected more Bocelli,  Pagliacci and Nessun Dorma.  At least I did. I get enough of a women's screeching at me every day of my life. Your only problem appears to be not traveling in the Yacht Club. The Le Muse restaurant is the only restaurant we ate all our meals. The restaurant is the most important aspect of the cruise for us. We met with the maitre d' the first thing on board. I told him we wanted this time every night and a table for two only, then I slipped him $50 bill and said no problems? I am sure you could have gotten better service in the MDR for a $20 bill. The higher up you go the bigger the tip needs to be. We had a wonderful experience. So good that we booked a total of 3 more YC cruises , this being our first. Our waiter was so good serving us 3 meals a day every day we tipped him $200, his attendants about 5 got $20 each. I am sure the maitre d' had a lot to do with our exceptional service.

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Thanks for the review.  As we have posted elsewhere,  the Divina is the tale of two ships, The Yacht Club and Outside of YC.  As older (senior) cruisers we never missed organized "activities" since it is not our thing, but we can certainly understand families having an issue.  Having cruised with our DD for many years (she is now a Mom) we do know that teens can be hard to please, but most teens seem to rate cruises on the other teens they meet.   As to your buffet comments, even thought we were in the YC, we stopped in the Lido for several lunches and enjoyed the experience.  But then I do not rate a buffet on my ability to find a chicken breast :).  We thought the salad bar was fine and the pizza excellent.

 

Your comments about entertainment were interesting and we agree with much of what you mentioned.  MSC does take getting used to since they do not follow the usual format of a few production shows a week with other shows done by Guest Entertainers.  We were neutral on the shows in that they were OK (we have seen worse) but nothing to write home about.  Some of the lounge entertainment was quite good, but we agree with your comment about the timing of lounge acts.  Our favorite group seldom started until after 10pm.   Like most who are willing to pay the big bucks for the Yacht Club, we quickly booked another cruise (in the Yacht Club) but decided there was no way we would cruise on MSC outside of the YC environment.

 

There are some things MSC can do to improve their product, without adding substantially to their costs.  Just publishing the performance times of the lounge acts (and then keeping those entertainers to the schedule) would be helpful.  You might see something in the daily schedules that would say that such and such group was in X lounge from 7:30 - 12.  But you could  walk in at 9:00 only to find they do not have another set until 9:45 (after the main show is over).  This is the responsibility of the cruise director or somebody on his staff.

 

As to the Sports Bar, we had no issue with the bowling as its simply a Sports Bar with noise typical in that type of venue.  But the one time we tried ordering food (a Reuben and wings) we actually waited for more then an hour without ever getting any food (the waitress said they were "working on it").  We finally left to eat elsewhere.  We did see somebody else get a Reuben and all we saw were two slices of bread (there must have been a slice of meat in there somewhere).  But everyone told us the wings were good..but we had to take their word for it since we never got ours.

 

Hank

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Thanks Flumpa for your review.  I am also considering an MSC and have sailed a variety of other cruise lines.  I thought you did a nice job of laying out the situation and then telling us why you liked or did not like it.  You left the discernment to the reader if it applies to them.  It helped me get a good picture of what I might be in for. 

 

Thank you. 

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Thank you, Flumpa for your review and your honesty. I cut and pasted it into a word document, changed the spacing and expanded the screen so that I could read it. Paragraphs are our friends.

 

 

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Its very subjective. We can see the same shows on Divina over and over again. We think the quality of the singers and dancers far exceed what we see on other cruise lines. These are professionals! We enjoy the cirque de solie type performances within the shows also.

 

As far as extra tipping, I have never needed to do that and leave the automatic tips and I get great service.

As for the chicken breast...if you had asked the maitre de in the buffet to make that for you he would have made sure it was available on the days you requested it. I have found they go above and beyond if asked.

 

I make sure I do not touch any tongs with my bare hands, and use a cloth napkin for that. Then I use another cloth napkin for my use. I have seen too many, most Europeans, NOT wash their hands after using the restrooms.... I have even spoken up and asked them to, and gotten rude remarks.

 

I have heard the kids clubs keep the kids occupied and very happy. Unless there are other kids the ages of yours ,I can see why he was bored.

 

I agree with the chair hogs and something needs to be done. You have the right to remove anything from a chair if no one has come to the chair in 30 minutes.

 

Enjoy your other cruises!

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Dear Cam, Is there a written or is it an unwritten 'right' to remove anything from a chair if no one has come to the chair in 30 minutes. We would like to down load a copy of this 'right ' and carry it with us when we go to pool. We would then have to get a pool attendant to witness the time, wait around 30 minutes and be ready to defend ourselves when they return. We think a better idea would be to install parking type meters on all lounges that charge a modest fee by the hour. The cruise line makes out and passengers are assured an available "parking spot'.

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On 1/1/2019 at 3:37 PM, Markanddonna said:

Thank you, Flumpa for your review and your honesty. I cut and pasted it into a word document, changed the spacing and expanded the screen so that I could read it. Paragraphs are our friends.

 

 

Thanks! Sorry about the spacing!

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On 1/1/2019 at 2:20 PM, coldweather said:

Thanks Flumpa for your review.  I am also considering an MSC and have sailed a variety of other cruise lines.  I thought you did a nice job of laying out the situation and then telling us why you liked or did not like it.  You left the discernment to the reader if it applies to them.  It helped me get a good picture of what I might be in for. 

 

Thank you. 

Thank you!!!

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I was on the 12/9 sailing, my first on MSC and I really enjoyed it.  I don't need non-stop entertainment.  I prefer to find somewhere semi-quiet on sea days to read and relax (not by the main pools).

 

I'm not a big show-goer but went to a couple and thought they were entertaining enough.  The lack of background scenes bothered my co-cruisers but not me, except the bright lights on the stairs behind the performers was a little blinding.

 

I would think that had you talked to the Maitre'd, you might have been re-seated.  At least that's how it works on other lines I've sailed.  But dining with "strangers" can be very rewarding.  You can talk to your family members every day.  Why not take the opportunity to engage with others?  Making small talk is a good skill to cultivate.  And you might make some new friends.  In fact, I sailed solo but was "with" a couple I met on a cruise and they brought several of their friends.  I'm still FB friends with several people I met on cruises years ago.

 

I wanted to sail MSC simply to get that slightly-different experience from the other mainline cruises I've sailed (mostly Carnival, 1 RCI, 1 NCL, 3 HAL, >30 total).  I enjoyed it enough that I'm probably going to book another MSC cruise in May.

 

I do confess I stopped reading when I got to that really, really long last bit that started with "Finally..."

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On 12/31/2018 at 8:36 PM, Kwaj girl said:

"Honest" review....as though others aren't?

 

Reviewers way of saying msc sucked.i knew this and read it anyway.my issue with msc seaside was the passengers and was expecting better food but when you have all those different nationalities on board I can understand the problem trying to make everyone happy.they have too many passengers crammed on it and people are very self centered these days.

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Divina has a lot of good free dance classes (according to DW) and a nice gym to work off the extra calories. It also had a talented duet band playing at the bar in the evening. It's unfortunate that you did not ultilize these amenities/activities to occupy some of your free time. I do agree that there are way too many ignorant people filled up their personal cups and water bottles from drink stations which is a big turnoff. Not sure what MSC can do about this since it is a persistent problem with all cruise lines.

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3 hours ago, sfaaa said:

Divina has a lot of good free dance classes (according to DW) and a nice gym to work off the extra calories. It also had a talented duet band playing at the bar in the evening. It's unfortunate that you did not ultilize these amenities/activities to occupy some of your free time. I do agree that there are way too many ignorant people filled up their personal cups and water bottles from drink stations which is a big turnoff. Not sure what MSC can do about this since it is a persistent problem with all cruise lines.

I think the duo band was the couple (from Naples, Italy) that played in the Luna Bar.  They were near fantastic.  The man was an awesome guitar player and his rendition of Hotel California was nearly as good as listening to the Eagles :).   We did back to back cruises 10 and 11 days.  On that first cruise we would go to the main shows every night, but late in the cruise we discovered that rock duo.  By the end of the cruise we were in the Luna Bar whenever that group played, and on our 2nd cruise they were our main entertainment.

 

We have been cruising many decades on 15 different cruise lines and will hear many similar complaints on any line.  The thing about folks filling water containers is not something we would even bother mentioning (on any cruise line) and is not even about the ship or its staff, but simply about passengers.  No cruise line has police standing by all the drink stations.  MSC does have an interesting problem when it comes to the usual passenger games/activities because they are dealing with many different languages.  While a line like HAL can rely on Trivia (sometimes the only activity on HAL) to be popular, it is difficult to do trivia when the audience speaks half a dozen languages.  It is the same for other activities like the "Liars Club" which do not lend themselves to multiple languages (nobody wants to wait while every comment is translated into 5 or 6 languages).  

 

The only real International Language is music and MSC does seem to understand this fact.  On the Divina we had a solo guy who could play decent country (and other styles), an Italian rock duo that could easily handle everything from the Beatles to Pink Floyd to Santana.  There was also a Jazz Quartet as well as a couple of opera performers.  It seems like MSC was trying to have something for everyone and if passengers chose to ignore all these options it is on them...not MSC.   As to the main theater shows, while what they do is different from other cruise lines it is OK.  And when I read criticism because somebody does not like the way a singer handles English....well keep in mind it is a very International cruise line.  If that performer did all his songs in Croatian or German I wonder if the complainer would be satisfied.  The term "Ugly American" can even apply on cruise ships.  Our fellow countrymen/women should accept that MSC is serving an international audience and understand that the entire world does not revolve around one language or culture.

 

We enjoyed the International and multi-cultural aspects of MSC.  If we want a typical US cruise line we could choose to cruise with RCI, Carnival, Princess, etc.  But we decided to try MSC because we knew it was an Italian company and Euro-centric in its approach to cruising.  Being served gelato instead of ice cream (in Le Muse) was great.  Having pasta made like we get in Italy (which means not drowned in sauce) was a nice change.  Sure, MSC has lots of rough edges (just like every other cruise line) but they are working hard at trying to accommodate the North American cruisers without sacrificing their Italian heritage.  There is much this line can do to improve, but we sure hope they do not become another Carnival or NCL.

 

Hank

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Dear Hank, You are spot on the mark as always! That guitar player played without any sheet music. We felt it was Santana playing his own music for us. He got more applause in the Luna than they received in the show theatre.

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On 12/31/2018 at 4:33 PM, flumpa said:

I have sailed RC, princess, celebrity, & NCL (haven). Overall the value for me is not worth the entire experience. I would rather pay more for better entertainment and more things to do on board. I prefer 'my style' cruising (eat when you want, dress how you want, etc) so I'm back to NCL for the future. Good luck and I hope you have a better experience! 

My husband and I felt much the same as you did. Even though we enjoyed our cruise as we were sailing with 13 other friends, there was many things lacking for us. I missed having choices for lunch, not much of a buffet person and also thought the salad bar was lacking. I was surprised a ship of her size did not have more specialty restaurants. We also found the staff to be very good! Was not impressed with the shows. I would sail MSC again if the right cruise came along at the right price but it woule never be my first choice of cruise lines.

Pat

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Obviously...... not everyone perceives everything the same. (Which is a good thing)   We did our "Friends and Family Annual Winter Caribbean Cruise" on the Divina last year.  Everyone enjoyed it so much, we (26 of us) are sailing on it again the end of the month.  We thought the shows were some of the best we've seen at sea.  Food was fine, no better or worse than on any other ship/line, cabins, service "same".  Pool areas nicer than some others and the ship itself, public rooms are some of the most attractive and best laid out. Having been on well over 100 cruises or TA's on  just about every line (current or now defunct) I have a lot to compare to.

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Posted (edited)
31 minutes ago, marco said:

Obviously...... not everyone perceives everything the same. (Which is a good thing)   We did our "Friends and Family Annual Winter Caribbean Cruise" on the Divina last year.  Everyone enjoyed it so much, we (26 of us) are sailing on it again the end of the month.  We thought the shows were some of the best we've seen at sea.  Food was fine, no better or worse than on any other ship/line, cabins, service "same".  Pool areas nicer than some others and the ship itself, public rooms are some of the most attractive and best laid out. Having been on well over 100 cruises or TA's on  just about every line (current or now defunct) I have a lot to compare to.

 

 

I definitely agree with you.  We did 32 days on the Divina last month and loved it!  Would book the Divina again in a heart beat.  41 cruises in our history and the Divina turned out to be our favorite cruise.

Edited by ready2cruzagain

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15 hours ago, Hlitner said:

We enjoyed the International and multi-cultural aspects of MSC.  If we want a typical US cruise line we could choose to cruise with RCI, Carnival, Princess, etc.  But we decided to try MSC because we knew it was an Italian company and Euro-centric in its approach to cruising.  Being served gelato instead of ice cream (in Le Muse) was great.  Having pasta made like we get in Italy (which means not drowned in sauce) was a nice change.  Sure, MSC has lots of rough edges (just like every other cruise line) but they are working hard at trying to accommodate the North American cruisers without sacrificing their Italian heritage.  There is much this line can do to improve, but we sure hope they do not become another Carnival or NCL.

 

I agree with this 100%. We loved the multicultural aspects of the cruise and hope MSC never compromise on their Italian heritage. We had no issue with either the performers' grasp of English or the announcements in multiple languages. We loved when the Captain on Seaside addressed the audience at one of the shows in 5 or 6 languages! And as a huge added bonus, the pasta, pizza, gelato, and cappuccino are the best we've had on any cruise line.

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