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Just off Divina....our first MSC


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An interesting experience. Much is different from other lines and much the same  Thanks to postings on Cruisecritics, we were prepared for most things, but surprised by others. The claims of poor service were generally accurate, but with many exceptions. The tales of long waits at dinner were spot on. Even knowing in advance, we were not prepared for the length of the meal. Food is always a matter of taste, so no need to address that point. But food not being hot is not subjective. This problem was consistent throughout the cruise.  A first for us, our cabin steward was rarely seen. We were lucky if the room was attended to before 4:00. There were, however, many pleasant surprises. The private island, Ocean Cay, is the best we’ve been on. Beautiful beaches, very walkable ( though a tram runs continuously), food trucks available as well as the buffet. The Sports Bar provided a great alternative to the main dining room. The ship itself is very well kept up, though poorly laid out. Embarkation and debarkation were pretty typical for Miami. Many offerings for kids. At the prices on MSC, we might bring the grand kids in the future, but can’t see us returning on our own. Feel free to ask any questions.

 

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37 minutes ago, Threedrones said:

An interesting experience. Much is different from other lines and much the same  Thanks to postings on Cruisecritics, we were prepared for most things, but surprised by others. The claims of poor service were generally accurate, but with many exceptions. The tales of long waits at dinner were spot on. Even knowing in advance, we were not prepared for the length of the meal. Food is always a matter of taste, so no need to address that point. But food not being hot is not subjective. This problem was consistent throughout the cruise.  A first for us, our cabin steward was rarely seen. We were lucky if the room was attended to before 4:00. There were, however, many pleasant surprises. The private island, Ocean Cay, is the best we’ve been on. Beautiful beaches, very walkable ( though a tram runs continuously), food trucks available as well as the buffet. The Sports Bar provided a great alternative to the main dining room. The ship itself is very well kept up, though poorly laid out. Embarkation and debarkation were pretty typical for Miami. Many offerings for kids. At the prices on MSC, we might bring the grand kids in the future, but can’t see us returning on our own. Feel free to ask any questions.

 

 We had a similar experience on our first Divina cruise, and then we tried Yacht Club.  Most of your frustrations will disappear if you try MSC again in YC.  We're going back for our 4th Divina cruise in 3 weeks--same itinerary you just did.  How was Freeport?  Did you get off the ship?  I'm sure it's still in rough shape after the hurricane?

 

Thanks for your review.  We're really looking forward to Ocean Cay--it opened 5 days after our last MSC cruise, so we're excited to visit it this time.

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We are going on our first MSC mid Feb. 3 nights out of Miami.  


Any tips for us?

 

I can’t find any firm answers on dress codes.  We’ve always cruised Norwegian, so we are used to things being pretty laid back.  What was your experience with the dress code?

 

With such a short cruise, we want to enjoy the ship as much as possible.  What time did you show up at Port of Miami?  What time were rooms available?

 

Any recommendations for Freeport? We’ve never been.  We will be perfectly happy to find a bar near the water, or a beach to lay on.  Either one is right up our alley!

 

thanks for any info you can give!

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14 hours ago, Jessieasanders said:

We are going on our first MSC mid Feb. 3 nights out of Miami.  


Any tips for us?

 

I can’t find any firm answers on dress codes.  We’ve always cruised Norwegian, so we are used to things being pretty laid back.  What was your experience with the dress code?

 

With such a short cruise, we want to enjoy the ship as much as possible.  What time did you show up at Port of Miami?  What time were rooms available?

 

Any recommendations for Freeport? We’ve never been.  We will be perfectly happy to find a bar near the water, or a beach to lay on.  Either one is right up our alley!

 

thanks for any info you can give!

The dress code is very laid back. If you dress the same as on NCL, you might even be over dressed. We arrived at the port around 11:00 and were on board just before 12:00. Boarding went smoothly...but mostly depends on how long for the previous cruise to debark. Rooms are supposed to be available at 2:00, but we were able to get in about 1:00. We sat on the balcony while the steward put in final touches. As stated, we didn’t venture far from port in Freeport. There is a Senor Frogs right off the ship with a few other bars in walking distance.

As for tips, what you find on the food trucks on Ocean Cay is also at the buffet. However, the food trucks are less crowded with plenty of seating. On board, try the Sports Bar. It only serves food at dinner, but it is a great change of pace. Typical bar food...wings, fish and chips, onion rings, mozzarella sticks etc. they don’t push this venue too much to keep the crowd down. The food is included in your cruise price. The only draw back for us is that the sport covered was cricket, which we knew nothing about (lol)

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Freeport:  Sorry to sound so negative, but honestly, it's a pit (IMHO).  My suggestion is to stay on the ship and enjoy the peace and quiet until the passengers that are in port realize it's awful and head back to the ship.

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Thank you for the tip about the Sports Bar. One of the negatives from my previous MSC cruise was that I didn't love the food (other than the pizza) so I will definitely try the Sports Bar for a change of pace.

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On 2/1/2020 at 11:17 AM, jkgourmet said:

Freeport:  Sorry to sound so negative, but honestly, it's a pit (IMHO).  My suggestion is to stay on the ship and enjoy the peace and quiet until the passengers that are in port realize it's awful and head back to the ship.

 

Hi

I don't know what your expectations are for cruising, but Grand Bahama island has many beautiful beaches. For that reason alone, I would get off every time. 

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