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MSC Meraviglia Cruise Review to Caribbean

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 7
Helpful Votes: 64

Overall rating:

4.4 out of 5
Verified Review
MSC Meraviglia

Caribbean from Miami

Sail date: March 01, 2020

Ship: MSC Meraviglia

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 13183

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 6 months ago

Review summary

If you are looking for a cruise experience that is different than your typical US cruise-line, and do not mind sharing the experience from people from other countries, speaking other languages (though many were French-speaking passengers from Canada rather than France), do consider MSC. Go with an open mind, take advantage of the different cultures, and enjoy yourself.

Embarkation

4 out of 5
While lines were long, there were plenty of stations open so MSC may not have been at fault. Additional screening due to the COVID-19 issue contributed to delays as passports were reviewed for foreign stamps and an additional temperature scan was conducted.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
The buffet offered a variety of foods including items like prosciutto and Asiago and other cheeses that you do not usually find on cruise ships. Like other MSC cruises we have been on, they have the best NY-style pizza outside of the city. Seating was never a problem at the buffet and there was sufficient space between the buffet counters and the seating area to allow passing through. The service in the main dining room was excellent and the food was good to excellent. Like many ships and restaurants, I feel that the food is under-seasoned but realize that they are trying to appeal to a wider market. I am a little disappointed that MSC appears to be straying from their Italian roots by offering fewer Italian entrees and lack of an Italian restaurant on board. The Easy Drink Package was sufficient for us; having coffee drinks like espresso and cappuccino, and bottled water included was great.

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5
There were plenty of activities to do, though we did not partake of many. Their are multiple pools available and the main pool has steps that make it easier for those that would have a problem with ladders. The pools were never over-crowded. The hot tubs could have been hotter.

Entertainment

5 out of 5
The stage shows were all excellent. Other than the one magic show, they were primarily singing and dancing with a variety of showcasing the excellent talent on board. The one afternoon opera performance was excellent and unique for US cruises. The acrobatic performances that we are used to seeing on cruise ships were in the two cirque shows that were at extra cost. There was a variety of music at the various bars. Our cruise director, Gene Young, was excellent keeping us entertained and informed. An added show due to the weather cancellation of Ocean Cay, showcased his story and talent.

Children's Programs

We did not have any children with us.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Our cabin steward (Christian) kept our cabin well stocked and clean, servicing it multiple times during the day; he was always friendly. Our dining room servers (Ram and his assistant) was friendly, efficient, and helpful. We found the entire staff friendly.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
The ship was very clean and well serviced. The layout was good, making travel between decks and from one end to the other easy. There were plenty of elevators (12 at each of two main locations plus the one side elevator that many did not know about). Having most of the main dining rooms and the theater located on one deck, including the Galleria, was very convenient.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Cabin layout, size,and storage area is comparable to most cruise ships and sufficient for two persons. Cabin was clean and well stocked. The bed and pillows were comfortable. The European custom of no top sheet needs getting used to and can be an inconvenience if you do not like the weight of a blanket. Bathroom was of typical cruise size for this cabin class and glass-enclosed shower was very good. In spite of some reports, bathroom was supplied with toilet paper, tissues, and washcloths. Shower gel and shampoo was satisfactory for my use. Our cabin was located at the end of the indented portion of the ship five decks above the lifeboats (7) and two decks below the buffet and pool area, just aft of mid-ship. The buffet deck (15) above provided shade for most of the day yet we did not experience excessive noise. The location gave us a much larger balcony; even though the view was partially blocked by a wall on one side, this did not present an issue and privacy was a benefit from either side.

Ship tip

Make use of the MSC for Me app. It is accessible from your phone and your cabin TV, and some features from the touch screen displays throughout the ship. You can check the ship's schedule, set up a personal schedule, make reservations for shows and restaurants, check daily dining room menus, check your bill, and chat with other shipmates.

Ports of call

Miami, Florida Did not visit port

Only for embarking and disembarking.

Costa Maya (Mahahual), Mexico

3 out of 5
Very crowded at port due to multiple ships being in. Did not do excursions. Only typical port shops.

Belize City, Belize Did not visit port

Did not plan any excursions; did not feel there were any unique shops at the port. Had to use tenders so was not convenient to just get off to see what was at the port.

Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras

3 out of 5
Did not plan any excursions. Very limited shops at the port.

OCEAN CAY MSC MARINE RESERVE, BAHAMAS Did not visit port

Cancelled due to high winds. MSC more than compensated with additional on-board activities and refund of port fees.

Disembarkation

4 out of 5
We opted for bringing our own luggage off and it seams that many have started doing this, causing a long line to disembark. Once off the ship, another long line especially for the elevator. This must be a port issue because we experienced the same issue on another cruise line in another port: only one elevator.

Traveler Photos

Espresso & Cappuccino Shower Fresh Mozzarella Presentation Gelato Balcony from below Balcony
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