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jstrutton

Seaside Review - 31 August 2019

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Quick review:

 

Embarkation:  Simple and on the ship very quickly.  If you happen to be Black Card, you can go to the front of the line and avoid the wait.  But even so, the lines move very fast for boarding

 

Ship: The ship itself is gorgeous.  The stairways are like most MSC ships with the crystal inside with makes for a great picture.  For having +5000 customers on board, it never felt crowded.  There is definitely a large majority of customers from European countries so expect numerous different languages being spoke.  Now for the bad:  the elevators as noted on several others reviews are horrible.  They have three banks of elevators, one being at the very back of the ships.  The other two banks are used to move +5000 passengers which isn't realistic IMO.  The other issue is that if someone has a "yacht club" card, they use it and it basically bypasses all the floors to get them to deck 16 (yacht club entrance).  So, you can basically take 1 or more of the elevators off the grid for the average customer since it will not stop to pick up or stop on any other floor.  IMO, they should just have dedicated a set of elevators for the yacht club in the construction,  but not sure if they can correct problem now.  Overall, for our taste the ship was probably too big but a good experience.  Liked the MSC DIvina much better but that is just our taste.  Also, be careful with getting to deck 16 buffet from one side of the ship.  It is blocked by the specialty restaurants and you have to go up to Deck 18 and then back to Deck 16 to get to it.  You do get more exercise but at times this is an annoyance.  

 

Casino:  Standard casino, had one section for smokers, but never got too bad. 

 

Buffets:  Standard buffets, nothing more or less than other cruise lines.  One note, the ice cream is only available on deck 16 and it isn't self-serve. Moves fast, you just have to ask the waiter for it.  

 

Main Dining:  Food was really good.  We can't remember having a bad dish and very timely service.  The negative is that they are serving 3 dinner times, so the waiters have very little time to interact with customers.  

 

Room Steward:  She was fine no issues.  We stayed in cabin 14065.  So, if you look this cabin up on their map, it looks different.  It is off track with the rest of the inside cabins on deck 14.  The good thing is that this cabin has a ton more space than the average inside cabin.  Bad thing is that we were so outset that the luggage porters on the last night forget to pick up our luggage so we ended up taking our own. 

 

Shows:  Very good, probably one of the best shows especially the last night.  

 

Entertainment staff:  The dance instructors (Alex & Erica) were FABULOUS!!  They are the best instructors and entertaining people we have seen on cruise ships.  If you miss their dance sessions, you are really missing a treat.  You must go; also it is a good workout so you can lose weight from eating on board.  

 

Disembarkation:  Very simple and easy.  Was on the street from the boat in probably less than 30 minutes.  

 

Drink packages:  Didn't get one so have to feedback

 

Zip line:  Well worth the $11.00 pp for the ride.  It is quick but still great fun.  Bowling was $25 for 30 minutes (I think), we didn't do it, but it was a standard bowling alley and not the miniature size like on the Divina.  

 

Any questions, just let me know.  I'll probably think of something else later.   

 

 

 

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Thanks for a very fair and balanced review.  I concur with most of what you found, although we didn't have much trouble (March '18) with the elevators except for directly after shows or returning from excursions, but that may been our location as I did hear complaints about it.  I liked the ship enough that I will be back on her in a few weeks and I am bringing 3 newbies, so I am excited to show her off!

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