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MSC Cruises: MSC Splendida

Fodorite Reviews

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Aug 2, 2015

Mediterranean

Having taken a number of previous cruises, MSC cruise is BY FAR the worst we have taken. We booked our reservation online, and the reservation included an amenities package - prepaid drinks, massages, etc. Several months before sailing, we made final payment and printed out all the relevant documents which included payment for the amenities package. Approximately two months before sailing and after our final payment, MSC cruise line unilaterally

changed the amenities package to a package of lesser value for the same cost. I only discovered this by checking our online reservation. Otherwise, they would have never informed us. We attempted to resolve this multiple times through their customer service via telephone and email. They would acknowledge the documentation that we had paid for the better amenities package. MSC claimed that it was an error that they posted the amenities package we purchased at the price we paid. It was a deciding factor in our final payment. After that we could not get out the cruise. We will NEVER sail with MSC cruises again. The customer service is HORRIBLE. MSC Cruise lines does have very well prepared gluten-free diet plan with carefull attention to this dietary restriction. The stateroom was clean and moderm Onboard activities were minimal We were fortunate to visit Tunisia before the current unrest. The ports of call were wonderful. The cruise line was horrible.

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Jan 19, 2014

Western Med and North Africa

This was the first time my girls went on a cruise. The ship is totally amazing and we never had a dull moment. It is a port intensive cruise and this made it even better value for money. Barcelona, Rome and Marseilles are absolutely stunning. The employees on the ship are extremely friendly and helpful. We had one bad experience in the Sante Fe Tex Mex dining area, but it was resolved by the assistant director on the ship. The children loved the shows.

The food was great and the Bora Bora buffet was wonderful for breakfast, but not the waistline. The entire trip was an awesome experience. It is wise to book an additional day or two in Barcelona as there is so much to do and see. Dining was very good. Bora Bora was wonderful for breakfast. Drinks were expensive and Sante Fe Tex Mex was a disappointment, with poor staff. The Cigar Lounge have some of the best employees with exceptional service. The room was on deck 10 - balcony and we could not complain. It would be great if the showers had glass instead of curtains. More than enough to do especially as you are at a different port everyday. Take an excursion in Tunis. The other ports are so easy to get around that no excursions are needed. Rome is awesome - book transfers from the port to Rome as it is almost a hour drive. Experience of a life time. MSC is outstanding and I would recommend this cruise to anyone.

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Mar 31, 2013

Western Med and North Africa

I don't understand why so many negative reviews for MSC. We booked into the Yacht Club which I know makes a difference as it's all inclusive except excursions. We had great service in all areas of the ship. The ship was spotless, the service was fantastic. Buffet food was good but the dining room food was excellent. Very nice Yacht club balcony regular room. It was big and comfortable as well as spotless. Couldn't have been much better.

Activities could have been improved some and could have included a few more things but this was a port intensive cruise so not a lot of time for such activities anyway. The shows and shopped on board was much better than Carnival for example. Don't book excursions for Genova, Rome, Palermo, Marseille, or Barcelona but Tunis you might want to book an excursion. The excursion prices on MSC seemed much cheaper than Carnival cruises we've been on. We had a great time but with busy port calls nearly everyday it was tiring. We tended to book an early morning excursion or do the cities on our own then head back to the ship early in the afternoon and enjoy the quiet. We did have a lot of Chinese tourist onboard with lots of kids so there was some cultural differences like waiting in lines, etc. but it didn't seem that bad.

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Apr 9, 2012

BCN-Tunis-Malta-Messina-Roma-Genova-BCN

Don´t fall sick @ MSC Splendida!!!!! Second night @ MSC Splendida I had a terrible stomachache. At 3am I went to the front desk asking for a doctor and they told me that it was better to wait until next morning, afterhours service would be very expensive, so I did. Next morning I showed up at on board hospital, expalin what was happening to me and again they told me that to get medication from them I had to pay first a doctor visit that would

be 40 euros (felt like they did not want to see me) I said I wanted to see the doctor anyway. Once with the doctor that did not speak english he said that it looked like apendicitis but like Tunis had "arabic" hospitals it was a better idea to wait until we arrive to Malta. They gave me some parecetamol pills and stomach protector (I found out later that it was not the right decision). I went with all my family for a walk at Tunis medina. When I got back I was feeling like dying, at that time the hospital was closed for lunch time so I went to my cabin. My sister told me that it was strange keeping apendicitis wainting and I´d better ask for a thermometer and check out my temp. My wife went to the hospital when they reopen and ask for the thermometer, they said that it was not working, she had to make big complains to get one, when she came back to the cabin I had 39.3, bad shape. The story is very long so I´ll continue tomorrow..... Stay away from the doctor. Kids had a great time.

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Jul 11, 2011

Med

Enjoyed the ports of the Med with the history and artifacts. The ship was magnificant in size and presentation. It was easy to get lost. Food was at a low standard, the buffet had little to offer and the dining was not a good experience. Food was usually cold, not cooked and small portions. Disappointed when they recommend not to drink the water from the taps and then have the hide to charge for drinking water. For those who don't drink alcohol

it can still be an expensive shout. The wine list was good but paying up to 10 times the value is a bit much. Our accommodation was good, the balcony was pretty well protected and the amenities fine. The activities were mainly for the younger passengers so we did not get involved. The lifeboat drill was a shambles, no one knew where to go and there was no check off to see if everyone was in attendance. In most ports we found our own way around using local transport rather than pay through the nose for some of the organised ventures. In some locations it is hard to avoid the set excursions due to the location of the port and the distance from civilization. The trip was good and the places we saw were also good, especially Malta. It is a good way to get a snap shot of the various places to then decide if you want to travel there another time. The cruise was smooth and the weather was fine. The ship was huge, ultra modern and magnificant. The rate MSC charge for gratuities, water, alcohol and excursions I expect there'll be a new ship on the horizon.

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Jun 25, 2011

Mediterranean

I really enjoyed the cruise, the ports were good and all the bad reports that I have read have been unfounded. I went with my husband and two children aged 16 and 11 and they all really enjoyed it as well. We are going back with MSC again this year on the Melody to see what the smaller ship is like but cannot find fault with the Splendida, we were really looked after including an invite to the captains cocktail part which is exclusive! Would recommend

it. Food was good but drinks were very expensive would recommend buying the packages beforehand. Preferred the buffet breakfast to the formal one, it was a bit stuffy!! The lunch buffet was fab, the children loved it. We had a lovely room with a balcony which was definitely worth the extra money, will find it hard this year on the Melody without the balcony. The room was more than big enough for myself, my husband and two children, it was always clean and tidy without us having to lift a finger. We didnt really join in that much with the onboard activites, we went to the shows but that was about it. The excursions are very expensive and you can do it cheaper at most ports by yourself, in fact on the Splendida you can do all the excusions cheaper by yourself apart from Etna as the taxis will not take you as not enough time but then the cruise excursion only takes you to the Silvestri Crater and a lot of the time is spent in the coach. At Civitavecchia, it is a lot cheaper and I mean a lot to take the free coach to the end of the port and walk to the train station, about 5-10 mins, this cost us 39 euros to get all four of us to the centre of Rome. Would highly recommend the Colossium tour, really worth the money. Is Marseilles you can walk to the bus stop from the port too and in Malta not far to walk at all to town. Wonderful and fantastic trip, loved it and will us MSC again, in fact we are this year around the Med and Black Sea, dont forget to save some money for the pricey tips at the end though!!!

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Apr 14, 2011

mediterainian

had read a lot of bad reviews about this cumpony and there cruise but it was all faulse it was the best holiday i have been on by far and would recomend this company to anyone it is fantastic the food was incredible it was none stop all day everyday the quality and taste was superb and cant understand why anyone would complain about it im sure they dont have top quality chefs cook for them at home everynight. i was in a tripple room and

the size was more than adiqit and was always kept cleen with fresh towles all the time and nothing was to much trouble for the cabin stewart were great and there was always something happening even on days not at see excursions were well organised and affofdable.if you diid ur own thing it was a little cheeper to do but no complaints there either unreal time ,lots of food fun and activities and would love to do it again well done MSC and thank you for a great and memerable holiday.in conclution anyone thinking of going on a holiday with this company do not hesitate they were fantastic

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Feb 24, 2011

Genova-Greece-Crete-Jerusalem-Cairo-Tunisia-Naples

You would have to be crazy out of your mind to consider cruising with MSC. We were originally booked on Costa; but the cruise was canceled because it had to go to dry-dock. So we took a chance on MSC. This was not merely a bad experience. It was a DISASTER. I paid over $30,000 for the cruise of a lifetime and had the experience ruined by MSC's singular lack of honesty and failure to provide even the most menial of services. I took 10 family members

on this cruise from America. MSC attempted to charge for nonsensical items and there numerous ghost charges. The customer service was non-existent. The meals did not provide beverages or even water without charge! We had an excursion to Cairo. We paid fully in advance -- as MSC insists with all charges. We spend more than 12 hours on the bus and didn't even get to see the pyramids because it was totally dark before we arrived and the pyramids had been closed to tourist access. MSC then refused a refund of the excursion costs. MSC asks you to give them your passports at the last port of call under the pretense that they need to stamp them. It is a ruse -- don't do it! They ask you to go into a foreign country without your passport while they keep it (which violates US and International Law) and then they hold them for the last day to coerce acceptance of charges which were totally unjustified. On the day of departure from the ship, the line of people contesting charges was so long that it would have taken days for all the complaints to be heard. They return your passport. I had been charged over $600 for internet use that I didn't authorize. I figured out that someone must have obtained by supposedly confidential access code and run up incredible charges. When I showed this to MSC they agreed it was likely fraud, but refused to not charge my card. The internet access was joke. There were 4 computers all in an area where there are numerous users who can see your screen (and that's how they got my access code I presume). The internet was so slow that I couldn't use it for business -- unlike the numerous other cruise ships that I have been on. I cannot recommend AGAINST MSC in stronger terms. DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY ON MSC. We were in a tour group of over 100 people and every single person felt the same as I did -- I know because I co-hosted the cruise. I lived in Italy for 2 years and I am fluent in Italian. Some of the food was OK. I was extremely disappointed in the gelato available on-board. Italians pride themselves on their gelato. MSC had an Indian host scoop the gelato -- who hardly spoke either Italian, French, German or English and clearly hated his job. The gelato was not merely bland, it was just bad. It was a disaster. We could hear the folks in the adjoining cabin just like they were in our room. I could hear the snoring all night long. I asked why did we have an adjoining cabin when we paid for a luxury balcony. Why? They explained that there was nothing they could do -- so typical. The folks in the adjoining smoked constantly -- even after I explained to the management that my wife has a respiratory condition that is exacerbated by smoke. There weren't any for children. Those for adults were not worth doing. Don't do any excursions with MSC.

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Sep 21, 2010

genova-marsseile-barcelona -tunis-valleta -messina-roma

Before i was starting the cruise I've read a bad review about my cruise,and I've decided when i come back,if i don't have the same opinion, to write a review, trying to help others.My English is not perfect, i apologies for my mistakes.Splendida is a spectacular ship.I was in many 5 stars hotels but this ship is simply takes my breath away.I wasn't expecting to find such a perfect floating hotel, beautiful, new and glamorous in this Mediteranean

cruise.And it was very cheap too.We had incredible large cabins,modern and romantic, with exterior balcony.The room made, Veronica, from Bali, an extremely attentive and smiley person, is cleaning the room, every time we get out from it,sometimes incredible,3 times in the day! The food was excellent, many restaurants to choose! At dinner we was at the second seat,in the a la carte restaurant which is high class luxury. We never wait 1 second for the table get ready for us.All the time 2 nice waiters were beside us. And what it was incredible? Everything you buy from the ship:weather, ice cream, food from other places than the included ones, are cheaper than ashore! It was my first cruise,but it was better than any hotel I've ever been. It was fantastic to float at the night time, without feeling any balance, and wake up in the morning in a different port.The gym area, saunas,theater, pools,everything perfect.Only that i advice you to make the ashore trips by yourself.Is more comfortable and less money.First day in Marseille, we went to Cathedral Notre Dame de la Garde(don't miss it) and we go to the old port, and make a cruise to Calancas, a spectacular place.You must eat Bouillabaisse, the specific food from the place, made by many types of fish.Barcelona, the same, by taxi, on our own we go to Park Guelle of Gaudi,Sagrada Famillia, Rampla,Here,the time is too short, only 6 hours.Tunis, it was better if we stayed on the ship, be careful with the taxis.They charge you 100 euro, go and return, and the price for one way whith any taxi is 15 euro(from the centre to ship, for example).We change 50 euro in the town, but we don't spend them all.You must ask always at the reception about the costs in every place.In Malta,Valetta we have good luck to find a very nice man, minibus driver, and he make a tour with us in many places, included a few hours on Golden beach where we had a nice time, swimming and playing in the sand with the kids.The driver came in time to take us back to the ship.For all the day, 8 persons, he want 60 euro,we pay 80 euro, with all gratitude.I will give you the contact, because he is a fantastic, kind person, helping you to see many places in little time.Good bless him and his familly.EMMANUEL'S-MINIBUS@TAXI 24 HRS SERVICE TEL MOB 00356 9949 4841; Tel/fax 00356 21 362 393, e-mail: emmanuelattard61@gmail.com.In MESSINA, i advice you to take a taxi to visit Taormina,9you will find many taxis near the ship) you also have nice wiew to the volcano Ethna. After you can swim near the island call Bella, and return with the same taxi to visit Messina.In Roma, we again take a taxi, a small bus,expensive.For 8 persons, a tour with return it costs 450 euro.This was our last day, the next morning we arrived in Genova.After this cruise i was verry pleased, but verry tired, so, on my way home, to Romania, by car, i catch a cold...;-)..What can i say more?..Manny things, but i have no time left, because i must prepare the dinner.;-)..Manny impressions, many pictures...like living one year in a day...Sorry for my English writing mistakes, i hope that what i wrote to be helpful to you all....

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Jul 19, 2010

Western Med

This was the most disappointing cruise we have ever experienced. If a travel agent recommends you to MSC, that person either does not like or does not know you. For the most part, this ship, while new and spacious in many respects, was overcrowded and the service, crew and food options were dismal. The food was mundane and limited and it does not appear as though the company has given much thought to customer service or convenience. For instance,

the dinner seating arrangements are outdated and inflexible. Quite remarkably, there are only two seating options. Thus, if one has the late seating, you must either be prepared to eat a meal that lasts until 11:30 p.m. and as late as midnight, or go without as there is no buffet or any other type of offering after lunch shuts down - sometimes as early as 2:30 p.m.! Granted, there are pay restaurants, but we found the food extremely lacking and overpriced. What this company has appeared to give a lot of thought to is how to charge for virtually everything. Water at dinner? Be prepared to pay. Shuttle service from ship to port entrance in ports with large harbors? 15 Euros per person. Movies in your room (not even first run movies)? Payment please. In addition, everything purchased has a 15% service charge tacked on and crew tips and gratuities are automatically added on to the bill (along with an obligatory UNICEF donation that we suspect for which the company takes credit if it in fact gives UNICEF such monies). Overall, we found the ship and its crew not very hospitable and the overall experience uninviting and dismal. This company has a lot to learn from other lines and we in good conscience can not recommend it to anyone. This company touts its food as one of its highlights. Sadly, the food, along with the food service staff was the lowlight of our cruising experience. The lunch and breakfast menues are one-dimensional and limited. Cans all involved in several respects and there is a marked absence of quality. For instance, no sushi, no salmon, poor quality meat usually covered over in thick gravy, canned fruits and vegetables and virtually no chocolate. Plenty of bread, though. In fact, while many food bins were empty, the majority of the food service bins were filled with bread during lunch and breakfast. Overall, very little quality and even less variety. The appetisers and anti-pasta at dinner was oftentimes good - until the waiter brought a plate out that had a paper packet for sprinkled cheese which confirmed the processed nature of the whole ordeal - microwave and cheese packets. The menu selections at dinner were extremely limited. For instance, not one steak, lobster or whole fish was seen the entire cruise. Just thin slices and small portions accompanied by apparently disinterested and disengaged waiters. To its credit, this ship's stateroom's were nice and spacious. The crew that cared for such were also very nice and very good. However, the "offer" to allow children under 17 to room with adults appeared to me to be a bait and switch tactic as we have two children under 17. When we attempted to take the line up on the offer, we were told the offer was not available because there were no triples available. We thus ended up having to purchase three cabins (there were five in our party- with two children under 17). Needless to say, we were shocked and disappointed when we arrived and immediately noticed that our room was in fact a triple! Non-existent, one-dimensional and crude. Some of the crew interactions with the customers raised several eyebrows (for instance, one game played - and videotaped! - involved putting ping pong balls down a man's pants and then seeing which female passenger could massage and manipulate the ball down the front of the man's pants and out the bottom of his pants' leg first. Another activity - again videotaped - involved putting a water bottle between a man's legs and having him walk toward a woman lying down while a stream of water arced out of the bottle between the man's legs and toward the woman. Not exactly our idea of sophistication. Shore time was extremely limited (i.e. Barelona - 4 hours; Less than 7 hours in many other ports). Thus, excursions essentially consisted of extremely overpriced shuttle service to limited spots for shopping. By our calculation, a taxi was about 4 times cheaper than the shuttle service provided and far more flexible. It's hard to be disappointed by a trip to the Mediterrean. This was our third trip to the Med in four years. Previous cruises on Norwegian and Celebrity were fabulous. Not so, this time. Expensive, crowded, tacky and an overall uncomfortable and unpleasant experience.

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