Cruise Review 10/25/2014
Just the Facts:
Ship: MSC Preziosa
Ports: Venice, Italy - Bari, Italy - Katakolon, Greece - Izmir, Turkey -
Istanbul, Turkey - Dubrovnik, Croatia - Venice, Italy
This is my 2nd MSC cruise and 96th cruise overall. I am cruising with my dear wife (DW) and although a seasoned cruiser this will be a very different set of cruise experiences sailing from Europe on an Italian cruise line. I know it will be very different than the standard American oriented cruise lines.
Saturday October 25 / Venice / Embarkation / Day 1
|St. Marks Square - Venice|
Sunday October 26 / Bari, Italy / Day 2
|Trulli homes in Alberobello|
Monday October 27 / Katakolon, Greece / Day 3
|Mt. Olympus, Greece|
Tuesday October 28 / Izmir, Turkey / Day 4
|Library of Celsus - Ephesus|
Wednesday October 29 / Istanbul, Turkey / Day 5
|Hagia Sophia Mosque|
Thursday October 30 / Day at Sea / Day 6
|Preziosa Lobby and Preziosa Bar|
Friday October 31 / Dubrovnik Croatia / Day 7
|A busy Luza Square - Dubrovnik|
Saturday November 1 / Debarkation / Venice
Smooth seas overnight and a clear and sunny day, in fact, we saw the sunrise on the horizon. We are scheduled to dock at 9:00 am and have a 9:50 am group time for departure. We were up early and finished our packing then watched us sail into Venice from the balcony on this beautiful morning. We then went up to the buffet for breakfast and finally to the Safari Lounge our designated debark area. At 9:50 we went off the ship, I made the mistake of confusing the colors pink with lilac and went to the wrong luggage area so had to repeat some steps to get into the lilac color area. It was not clear that there where two luggage areas, but we did learn some good intel that will help with embark tomorrow. Once we had our luggage we found the shuttle bus to the People Mover and were on our way to Venice. We had no real problems getting elevators at both ends of the People Mover and soon we were in Piazzale Roma. You can actually see our hotel from there so we crossed the square and made our way across the single canal bridge to Hotel Arlecchino. Our room was to be ready in only a few minutes so we went next door to see if our friends had arrived and very soon both were there. We went back to place our luggage in the room and were away with our good friends for a great day in Venice.
Maiden Voyage: 2013 I Gross Tonnage: 139,072 tons
Passenger Capacity: 3959 | Crew: 1370 I Length: 332.99 meters
Max Cruising Speed: 27 knots I Avg Speed 23.7 knots
Installed power: Diesel (40,000kW) I Propulsion: Twin propellers
We have cabin 12264 an aft facing balcony located on deck 12 and there are aft elevators located nearby. It is a well decorated and spacious cabin. The cabin has a push button safe, twin/queen beds, large padded headboard, two night stands with lights, a large decorative mirror, a small refrigerator, small table, couch, seat at dresser, and TV with interactive features.
Our MDR waiters were very efficient as were our cabin stewards, but overall the crew were not really very friendly, there were some exceptions, but it’s a very different environment from most cruise lines. We actually found this same attitude throughout Europe not just on the ship.
Dining / Food / Bars / Entertainment
Entertainment is the strong suit of MSC with very elaborate production shows and live music in most all venues. In addition to the production shows they have a ‘fun’ event scheduled every night night at 11:00 pm in the Safari Lounge (large venue located far aft). I was a bit disappointed with the MDR dinners, they were not as good as when we sailed on the MSC Poesia. The Inca and Maya Buffet were adequate, it was different food and that is a good thing. They had some very nice lounges and bars, we tried to visit most. We did get the Allegrissimo package (~$30 per person per day) for unlimited liquor, cokes, water, etc. and it seemed to be worthwhile.
We did not know this would be a school holiday in Europe and there would be so many children and families. Many children were well behaved, but many were not and there are always a few very bad apples. As mentioned I knew it will be very different than the usual American cruise lines and if your looking for the same experience it will be much different. You may like the differences or you may be very unhappy with the differences. If you don’t like change or are not flexible you will probably NOT like sailing a European cruise line. We enjoyed ourselves and because we had the sanctuary of our own nice balcony we enjoyed the cruise and especially the excursions.
Highlights of the Cruise
Aft facing Balcony Cabin
Mount Olympus Excursion
Istanbul (not Constantinople)
MSC Production Shows