It was fun, but not our favorite cruise or cruise line

MSC Meraviglia Cruise Review to Caribbean

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 14

Overall rating:

4 out of 5
MSC Meraviglia

7 Night Caribbean (Miami Roundtrip)

Sail date: March 01, 2020

Ship: MSC Meraviglia

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 11390

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Review summary

This ship was too probably too big for us. It was clearly geared toward families, while we prefer the company of more adults. It was a little too obvious that cruise-ship revenue was more important than the guest experience; a turn-off. There were few on-board activity options that appealed. When we asked about the wine-tasting that was being advertised on the elevator screens (something we would have been interested in) we were told that they weren't doing it. Too much like Carnival; probably won't be repeat customers.

Embarkation

5 out of 5
Quite excellent mnaagement of a huge group of people. Upselling of everything the minute we got on the ship was a real turn-off. It was hard for us to even make our way throught he throng of hawkers to get to our stateroom. Other ships have offered a welcome glass of champagne and crew members to assist rahter than sell.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

3 out of 5
The main restaurant was OK, but didn't by any means meet my expectations. I had to send a couple of items back, as did others at our table. Potions for some of the items were quite small. Up charge for the good steaks or lobster was disappointing. Felt they should have had at least one "special" night. They didn't even have a good Caesar salad; it was all watery and flavorless. Buffet was really not very good. The pastries were outstanding, but other offerings were not exceptional in any way. With the exception of the carving station item, which varied, the food was almost exactly the same every day. It was short on flavor and often not served at the appropriate temperature. Nothing about the specialty restaurants convinced us that they would be a superior value to the main dining room. We did participate in the specialty restaurant sampling. It was a good idea, but the samples weren't very compelling. Didn't find a place to get some decent (free) happy hour snacks.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
We didn't really participate in many of the activities, since they didn't really appeal to us. The first day at sea, it was impossible to get a deck chair, since "parkers' for the day weren't really managed. Also, apparently no game room or library.

Entertainment

4 out of 5
The singers and dancers were really excellent (not crazy about the tall, bald lead singer) and we enjoyed every show except for the first night - "Virtual". We went to one of the Cirque shows and enjoyed it very much.

Service and Staff

4 out of 5
The staff seemed genuinely friendly and overall did very good job. Dining room waiters were usually very attentive and so was out cabin steward. Ship's officers could have been more visible and outgoing.

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
Public bathrooms were very good. Glad for the washing stations and availability of hand sanitizer. Ship's design was pretty good. So quiet public areas to sit and read.

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5
Definitely on the small side in comparison to a similar class of service on other ships. Drawer space lacking. Overall tight, but not a major inconvenience. Sofa was quite dirty and dingy. Requested a blanket, which we were told wasn't available.

Ship tip

We had read that MSC cruises caters to an older, more sedate crowd. Our cruise was totally overrun with kids who weren't especailly weel-behaved. If someone is looking for a refined, sedate crusing experience, the Meraviglia is not it!

Ports of call

Miami, Florida

5 out of 5
Did not do an excursion.

Costa Maya (Mahahual), Mexico

5 out of 5
Avery pleasant port with ample opportunity for exploration. We went to Chachobben and the 7-color Lagoon which we enjoyed; shopping, local color, restaurant options good here, too.

Belize City, Belize

4 out of 5
Port laid out well for cruisers. Went on an excursion to Goff Island. Unfortunately, too rough for snorkeling part of our excursion.

Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras

5 out of 5
We love Roatan! Took and island tour and ended up on the west side where we did some snorkeling. It was beautiful!!! Really felt the love from all in the tourist industry here.

OCEAN CAY MSC MARINE RESERVE, BAHAMAS Did not visit port

Bacause of the weather, we couldn't dock at Ocean Cay. Not much was done to make up for this, as the ensuing day at sea didn't really have much in the way of more or different activities; they need a better back-up plan for when this happens. Also, based on other cruise experience, we expected at least some type of compensation to make up for mission this port (cabin credit, partial refund, free specialty restaurant, etc.). Nothing was provided.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
Instructions were clear and the process went smoothly.
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