Very very ordinary cruise with MSC - Caribbean destinations beautiful

MSC Divina Cruise Review to Caribbean - Eastern
Experience: 4-6 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 3

Overall Rating:

3.1 out of 5
Verified Review
MSC Divina

10 Night Eastern Caribbean (Miami Roundtrip)

Sail Date: December 20, 2018

Ship: MSC Divina

Cabin Type: Balcony

Cabin Number: 12229

Traveled As: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 4 months ago

Review Summary

Whilst we selected MSC because the ship looked modern and luxurious, it was quite cramped and badly understaffed meaning service was almost non-existent. The food was very ordinary and availability was limited in hours, locations and variety.

Embarkation

5 out of 5
Very efficient process - seen quickly, thorough security and onboard within 30 minutes

Ship Experiences

Food and Dining

1 out of 5
The food was very ordinary - bland, mass produced. Specialty restaurants were not worth paying extra for - the sushi restaurant was passable, but not a cut above like you would expect from specialty and Eataly restaraunt was very similar to buffet quality. Except the fresh pizzas were more gourmet and the metre long option was kinda cool. The buffets were strategically closed off to herd the Masses to a small portion of the buffet area (assume for efficiency of staff), but resulted in crowded seating areas and lines through service. Overall, the food was very disappointing.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
The pools were pretty good. The other activities were not really of interest to us. We had board games for sea days but it was pretty hard to find a comfortable lounge and table that was near a bar in service, so we ended up just playing in our room.

Entertainment

2 out of 5
We went to the first show which was really just a group of people singing musical numbers. The only shining light was the girl on the ribbons... otherwise, it was pretty boring.

Service and Staff

1 out of 5
It appeared that the ship was badly understaffed, and undertrained with one or two guys for each bar, restocking as they were serving and often at a run. There did not appear to be any systems in place in the bars as much time was spent searching for the right alcohol for cocktails. Wait times for drinks were 20 - 30 minutes in every bar and only a few bars were open at any one time, even at sea days. The only time there was drink service was the casino which had 6-8 waiters working the floor - I assume to keep people at the tables. Overall, a very poor and frustrating experience which impacted our trip considerably. Our room steward was a gem and did a great job, remembering we liked ice in our room for evening drinks with the family and keeping our room pristine.

Ship Quality

3 out of 5
The ship layout is ok and the atrium area is particularly stunning with the Swarovski crystal stairways. However, there are way too many touch points on the ship which quickly become soiled with germy hands. The doors should be automatic, not manual opening and the state of the public restrooms were rank. There should be handwashing stations entering all eating areas as we share serving implements... and definitely more purell disinfectant gel stations. The lounge areas were overall pretty well maintained and the floors were always vacuumed and free from debris.

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
Size was acceptable, whilst the bed mattress was pretty hard, the pillows were good and the ability to select the type we prefer was appreciated. The cabin was pretty clean, although I think the couch could do with a steam clean.

Ship Tip

Be patient.

Ports Of Call

Miami, Florida

5 out of 5
Great place to visit - beach awesome and lots to see around South Beach. We did a drive down to the keys and had a great day

St. John's, Antigua

5 out of 5
The port was great and good that all the people were at the entrance to the port with lots of options. We went to a private beach club and spent the day - it was awesome.

Basseterre, St. Kitts

4 out of 5
St Kitts was OK - we went to a private beach club for the day. Crowded but OK.

Pointe-A-Pitre, Guadeloupe

3 out of 5
It was Christmas Day and not much was open - and the weather was terrible so we went for a walk through town and then got straight back on the ship. Don't feel we've given it justice yet to be fair.

Tortola, British Virgin Islands

4 out of 5
Ferry line up was too long, too many people. Ended up hiring a private driver and went on his recommendation to a secluded beach and had a lovely day there.

Philipsburg, St. Maarten

5 out of 5
We did Bernard's Tours for the day and it was awesome value. Organised privately. Could see there was lots to do there and may return.

Disembarkation

4 out of 5
Good but by chance. We initially went to join the mid 6 deck line off the ship for self disembarkation at 7am... and the line was ridiculous. Seriously ridiculous just to walk off. We got lucky as a worked walked past us saying that they had just come from the other exit and it was empty so we went there and just walked straight off. There should be more exit options to streamline the process.
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