The wife and I just got off the Seaside from an April 13-20 cruise to the eastern Caribbean so I decided I would give a brief review. Reading the negative reviews has me a little skeptical about the Seaside. This was our second MSC cruise with the first on the Divina. Embarkation was easy and quick - arrived at port around 11 and on ship by 11:30. Beautiful ship - huge. Staff was friendly - has some problems registering a credit card at first but problem solved later in the day. We had a bella balcony room (10006) and got in the room by 2. We had he old deluxe drink package - one they discontinued - we loved it and the staff never had a problem differentiating between the new packages and old one - ours included mini-bar (which was awesome - refilled every day - even our room steward reminded us that it was included in our package. The chocolate shop (Venchi?) was also included which was great - espressos, chocolate martinis, mudslides all included in package. Understand that the new premier does not include it.
Room was typical balcony - bathroom as noted by all was small - being on front of ship - wind from movement was bad - could not go on balcony while ship was moving - get blown over - know why it is a Bella Balcony. Room Steward was great - no problems all week - nice, clean, did anything we ask.
Bars were crowded - tips help, they will find you if you tip early in week. Masters weekend - sports bar was packed. All bar tenders very friendly - kudos to Alvin in the casino bar. No problems with drink package - they scan card with tablet and get you drinks - no signing.
Food - dining rooms were beautiful - had three dining times - 5:30-7:30-9:30 - the waiters are really under stress to get all three done on time - small portions but food good - comparable to RCI and NCL. I like ordering desert when you order meal - saves some time. Buffet was good - did not vary much from day to day - did notice a lot of crew eating at night from Buffet - much more than other ships. Cutting in line and language barrier caused a lot of problems that could be solved with ropes and exit and entrance signs.
Shows were good and short (maybe 30-35 minutes) - had to make reservations for each night and they scanned your card for each show - each show was packed. The app on phone came in handy - booked entire week the first day. Beerprov comedy was good and Michael Jackson show was good - another was the Peter Pan show - all used similar acts, just different costumes. Did not do slides or ziplines but looked like both were open regularly when at sea.
Pools were crowded early for sea days - all chairs reserved by 9 - with 5000 on the boat, you better get up early to get a chair. Adult pool only on deck 7 was nice - no kids in pool - strictly enforced. Hot tubs are placed around the boat on different decks - they are usually crowded after 10 am. Dance lessons, yoga, games on 16 pool deck - staff did a good job with these.
Casino was good - slots paid better than tables - no craps - smokey but great dealers and bar tenders.
Ports - not a very good itinerary - the times were off just enough to ruin plans - San Juan (5:00 pm-1:00 am) - got off and ate some local food. St. Thomas - was there the entire day - enjoyed Sapphire Beach - best day. St. Maarten - only there from 7-1:30 (not enough time to enjoy the beaches. Nassau (12-6) again - short time - I would cut Nassau out all together and enjoy full days at San Juan and St. Maarten.
I would say Americans made up about 30% of people on board - many people from Europe - all announcements done in five lanuages. Europeans were nice for most part - language barrier/ understanding instructions was an issue. Debarkation was the only debacle - we did self serve embarkation - they wrapped the line to where the entrance to the exit line was near back of line - cutting to leave was a problem - many people that were in line were arguing with those that were cutting - no help from MSC crew. Could have gotten ugly.
Overall - would go again. As I see it - crew was friendly and worked hard - they just don't have enough help for that big a ship or that many people.. Many more foreigners than the other USA cruise lines but friendly for most part. Overall would grade the cruise a B+.