FIRST & LAST TIME WITH MSC

MSC Magnifica Cruise Review to Europe

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 13

Overall rating:

4.2 out of 5
MSC Magnifica

Italy, France, Spain, Gibraltar, Portugal,UK

Sail date: November 17, 2018

Ship: MSC Magnifica

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 15018

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

We have traveled on many other cruise lines and will never use MSC again. We found them to be unfair (i.e. charging us more for their beverage package), not upfront with full options available to us on an excursion day (i.e. they did not take us to the city center and dropped us off in the middle of nowhere with out any direction or guidance.) The cigar room had horrible ventilation and allowed cigarette smokers. The thermal area was minimal unlike other cruise lines. Towards the end of the cruise there was not enough staffing at the bars. There was also a time when all restaurants and the buffet were closed at the same time. The Asian restaurant had decent food but not good service. There were no more than three couples in there each time we ate, very sad.

Embarkation

5 out of 5
This was THE best experience we have ever had with a cruise line.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

2 out of 5
I understand it is difficult to cook for 3,500 people & we are food snobs. Perhaps it was being on the cruise ship for 12 days, but the buffet food was the same every day. The restaurant did have a good selection. However, there was no much seafood and what was offered was not good quality, small and poor selection. The staff were wonderful, the rooms were very clean.

L'Oasi Restaurant

3 out of 5

Typical buffet food. Go to the back when you go there. There is a huge crowd in the front and there is a bar in the back.

Topazio Bar

5 out of 5

Geovani was the best bar tender of them all. My husband had a cold and he make a special concoction called Grug that was warm and amazing! We were there most nights. They offer live music and had good service. A bit quieter than other bars.

Tiger Bar

4 out of 5

We were there most nights and during the day because it was close to our room on the 15th floor. Typically got good service and they offered free dancing lessons & live music. Service was a bit slow at times. Pleasant staff.

Shanghai Chinese Restaurant

3 out of 5

Not sure why they were not busier than they were. The food was decent and the prices were reasonable.

Sahara Buffet

3 out of 5

Set up well, but got tired of the same food for 12 days. Go to the back of it where it offers the same food and not as much traffic. There is a bar in the back too.

Ruby Bar

4 out of 5

Clean and good service until the end of the cruise where staffing was light. Note: Each bar has a different selection of liquor.

Quattro venti Restaurant

4 out of 5

The service was fantastic and it was clean. They had decent food but the seafood was very small and not a good quality.

Le Gocce Bar

4 out of 5

Lot's of seating, live piano and classical music. Known for their coffee options.

Onboard Activities

2 out of 5
MSC did have a choice of activities. It would have been nice if they ran movies during the day because the movies offered on the tv's were not working. Having a better selection of board games and ample supply of Suduko would have been nice too.

Jacuzzis

4 out of 5

There were several on the ship. They allowed six in each and you were unable to bring a plastic cup with a drink into it. The Aurea package is great where you are able to use deck 16 that did not allow children.

Turkish Baths

2 out of 5

They only offered jacuzzi & steam. There was only one bathroom we found.

Tour Office

2 out of 5

Not a fan, but there were doing their jobs to sell excursions rather than share options on your own. Do your homework before you board. Hop On and Off buses seem to work the best for us. They were offered at all ports.

Sliding Sun Roof

5 out of 5

Great idea, it was much warmer during our colder days. Was very loud with all of the kids. Check your package because gelato might be free.

Shopping Area

3 out of 5

Basic and over priced. Do your homework before you make a purchase.

Photo Gallery & Shops

2 out of 5

Not a fan. Being a Black Voyager member they were to offer us a 40% discount. However, the package they offered us did not allow us the discount. They said the 40% off was only for the 1st day at sea.....

MSC Aurea Spa

3 out of 5

Basic, not as nice as other cruise lines that also offer a salt room and other options.

Massage Room

4 out of 5

The room I had there was a nice view. They try to sell you their products once you are done. We enjoyed the spa health bar on a regular basis for protein shakes, tea and Gatorade.

Le Gocce Reception

2 out of 5

Basic. However the staff were not open to giving you any input about ports unless it included one of their excursions.

Cuba Lounge Cigar Room

2 out of 5

The service & design were wonderful. However, the ventilation was horrible and they allowed cigarette smokers in.

Entertainment

3 out of 5
MSC is very proud to be the only cruise line to offer opera. Most of the entertainment was catered to non-English speaking passengers.

Royal Theatre

4 out of 5

Lots of space, but they did not want you to bring drinks in with you.

Library

4 out of 5

Spacious and well labeled for those who wanted to borrow a book.

Card Room

3 out of 5

Smaller than other card rooms, it only had 5-6 tables. They should have either offered coasters or an area to place your beverage.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
I can't say enough about their staff, they were polite, friendly and worked VERY had to make you happy. 85% of them spoke very good English. Our room was always made up each time we stepped out. Fresh linens daily.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
We were VERY happy with the ships design and cleanliness.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
There was so much room for the two of us. We had a short hallway with glass shelving & mirror, two closets, one walk-in with plenty of shelving. We never used the drawers on either side of the mini-bar. It was nice having a tub for laundry. The balcony was average size with two chairs and a table. The room even had a sit down area to apply makeup....dry your hair etc. The mirror in that area had the safe behind it... pretty cool. The tv was very small and only offered 3 English channels. Luckily they were the news for us to be able to stay current. Fantastic location, we prefer being in the front of the ship going forward.

Ship tip

Bring ALL of confirmation documentation with you. We purchased the premium beverage package and they didn't honor it. MSC changed their beverage prices two days prior to our embarkation and as a result we had to pay an additional 800 euros. We are in the process of disputing it. Read the fine print on Excursions and ask if there are free shuttle options other than theirs.

Ports of call

Barcelona, Spain

5 out of 5
Love it! We have been there three times. Take the Hop On and Off bus.

La valletta

5 out of 5
We have been there twice and love it. Go to Mdena, it is a must.

Heraklion

3 out of 5
Not a big fan, it was dirty and we did not feel comfortable walking around.

Rhodes, Greece

5 out of 5

Piraeus (Athens), Greece

5 out of 5

Corfu, Greece

5 out of 5

Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy

5 out of 5
Save your money and take the train. The station is within walking distance and takes you half the time to get there. Do your homework with directions before you leave. The MSC staff were not open about giving any type of help that took money out of their pockets.

Genoa, Italy

5 out of 5
Very small, you can walk the city. We took the Hop On & Off bus and would do it again.

Marseille (Provence), France

5 out of 5
Get off the ship and explore. There is free transportation/shuttle that MSC does not tell you about. We took the Little train to Notre Dame and highly recommend it.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
Best disembarkation we have ever experienced.
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