The Italian gentlemen who greeted us before checkin on the street in FL set the tone for fun. MSC takes a hit on food because Americans are used to quantity vs quality. The food was abundant, fresh, simply prepared (wonderfully), great pasta, and soups. One could eat the 7 course meals with a good bottle of wine (nicely priced) and feel great. Our family of 4 had our own table. If you elect the buffets, excellent roasted meats, great European specialties plus the standard American fare. The ship was immaculate. The pools are larger than other cruise ships. Shows were excellent. The ship's composition was probably 60% Italians, Germans, Scandinavians, and French and 40% Americans. My 9 and 10 year olds loved that. The European travelers around us enjoyed their families thru late dinners and shows. The tone was more laid back, less overdrinking by 10 a.m. as I've seen on other cruises. Employees so interesting from S. Africa to Romania. Language differences made it a good experience for my kids. Excursions were fantastic from a bamboo raft thru Jamaica's rainforest to snorkeling with stingrays at Blackbeard's Cay in Nassau. Thethering from the ship for 1 excursion was a long line/wait. Big problem - no tv coverage during first of two NFL playoff games. Americans were scrambling for news. Baseball players on cruise were fantastic. Thank you Ken Griffey Sr. for genuine time you gave to my kids. Ice cream machine needs to be on 24 hrs. Wine bar has excellently priced Italian wines and hearty appetizers with great piano player and staff. Thank you for not bombarding us with photos. That was done so tastefully. Also easy to change gratuity policy, took 5 min with no questions/hassle. We received excellent service but wanted to make sure gratuity was more reasonable and went to the right people (our waiter, our cabin attendants, etc.). Best part of the cruise - kids sail free! It made traveling with excursions completely affordable for a middle class family.
More Affordable and European Simplicity
Sail Date: January 01, 2010
Traveled As: Family w/young children
Pros: Easy and Quick checkin
Cons: Leaving the ship for excursions
Recommends MSC Poesia? Yes!