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A week in the Mediterranean on MSC Preziosa

A week in the Mediterranean on MSC Preziosa
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I remember the first time I walked into a cruise ship six years ago – my eyes widened with wonder. Gilded staircases, ornate elevators, endless buffets, dozens of bars – it was practically a floating city.

 

I spent most of that holiday marvelling at the logistics of it all – How did the chefs cater to the needs of over 3000 passengers? How was one to sample all 16 bars on the ship in 8 evenings? How did our steward know we liked our sheets just so? Where was all that food stored? Heck! I even remember staring dumbstruck at the thousands of watermelons being loaded on to the ship at one of the ports.

 

4 years and 5 cruises later, I’m still amazed at the concept of a floating city, which visits a new city everyday.It’s said you’re either a cruise person or you’re not. We belong to the first category – we love the anonymity and luxury afforded by a large ship. No wonder one of our first articles was on a Mediterranean Cruise. A lot of people think of cruises as a family holiday or sneer at the idea of the number of people onboard a cruise ship but Vid and I have always loved the idea of spending a week or two in our own little world (read a cabin perched on the tenth floor of a large ship) without a worry in the world, exploring a new city every day,living it up at the bars and the ship’s casino in the evenings, and dressing up for elaborate black-tie dinners every other day.

 

These options are amplified manifold on MSC Preziosa – a cruise ship of mammoth proportions. Its MSC Cruises’ newest ship and can accommodate over 4300 passengers and 1300 crew members. That’s almost 6000 people. Phew!! The ship sails around the Mediterranean and it has over a dozen restaurants and bars, cafés, pizzerias, a bowling alley, 4D cinema (loads of fun!), FI simulator, a water park, and loads more. But our favourite part would have to be the view from our balcony cabin and the dreamy infinity pool on the 15th floor of the ship. Don’t believe us? Take a look :-

 

MSC Preziosa view from balcony cabin

The view from our balcony cabin – seriously who can argue with this?

 

MSC Preziosa infinity pool

The infinity pool on the 15th floor of MSC Preziosa looks out onto the Mediterranean Sea. It’s crowded during the day but there is hardly anyone around during the evening

 

MSC Preziosa review

Vid has breakfast on MSC Preziosa with the city of Dubrovnik (Croatia) looming in the background

 

We opted for an itinerary that took us to some of our favourite cities in Europe – Venice (Italy), Istanbul and Izmir (Turkey), Dubrovnik (Croatia), and Olympia (Greece). We had a grand ol’ time. Click on the subheadings below to read a detailed review of MSC Preziosa or scroll through dozens of our photos onboard the cruise ship. Make sure you check out the photo of ‘Vertigo’ – a crazy water slide perched on the topmost deck of the ship with parts of it right over the ocean . It puts most amusement park rides to shame. Hair-raising much? 😉

 

THE SHIP

MSC Preziosa is MSC Cruises’ latest addition to their fleet. The ship is new, so everything from the upholstery to the carpets is squeaky clean. Having been on a fair few cruise ships over the past couple of years, we expected garish interiors. But MSC Preziosa’s lounges and bars are different . Sure there is the standard opulent staircase and ornate chandeliers but the lounges and all public areas are decorated tastefully, bedecked with subtle colours and modern furnishings.

 

The ship itself is an amazing feat of engineering – it has everything from pools and jacuzzis to an elaborate water park for kids and alfresco bars and coffee lounges for adults, so there is never a shortage of things to do during the day. Some of our favourite areas include the twinkly star-laden ceiling of MSC Preziosa’s Pasticceria & Gelateria and the open-air bar on Deck 15.

 

Every evening the Platinum Theatre showcases an intriguing musical or acrobatic act. But we spent our evenings waltzing to gorgeous tunes at The Jazz Bar – highly recommended.

 

MSC-Preziosa-review

MSC Preziosa – The Ship

 

MSC Preziosa - the pool area at night

MSC Preziosa – the pool area at night

 

MSC Preziosa water slide

Vertigo, the water slide on the 18th deck, is perfect for an adrenalin-fuelled experience

 

Platinum Theatre, MSC Preziosa

Platinum Theatre, MSC Preziosa

 

MSC Preziosa pool area and jacuzzi

The pool area can get quite busy during the day

 

MSC Preziosa review

The Piano Lounge boasts of some great music

 

Bar MSC Preziosa

The bar on Deck 15, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, was one of our favourite areas on MSC Preziosa

 

MSC-Preziosa-review-

Jacuzzi on MSC Preziosa with the gorgeous city of Dubrovnik in the background

 

MSC preziosa review

Blue waters of The Mediterranean Sea from MSC Preziosa

 

 

THE ROOMS (OUR BALCONY CABIN)

I’ve finally snaked my way to our favourite bit – the cabins on MSC Preziosa. We opted for a balcony cabin on the 10th floor and it was spacious, well-furnished, and equipped with everything we could possibly need for our holiday. We were welcomed with an indulgent tray of chocolate-coated strawberries and chilled champagne. For the next 7 days, our thoughtful steward, Cleber, ensured everything was spick and span in the most unobtrusive way possible. The cabins are serviced twice a day 🙂

 

At the risk of sounding boring, I have to admit we spent a languorous day or two holed up in our room with a stunning view and a week’s worth of cocktails for company. Then again, I did say the idea of being ensconced in our little world, with everything catered for, is the highlight of every cruise holiday for us 🙂

 

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa

A welcome surprise in the balcony cabin on MSC Preziosa

 

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa (the balloons were put up by Cleber for Vid on his birthday :))

 

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa

 

The Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa

The view from our cabin on MSC Preziosa

 

The view from the Balcony Cabin on MSC Preziosa

Look at that view – can you blame us for spending time in our balcony?

 

 

THE FOOOOOOOD

Food plays a significant role in every holiday but it occupies pride of place on a cruise holiday. A cruise holiday is all about endless buffets, dozens of cocktails, juices, apéritifs, fine dining and indulgent dinners – all followed by some calorie-laden liqueurs. Nom!

 

MSC Cruises prides itself on showcasing the Mediterranean way of eating. The breakfast and lunch buffets are well-thought out ,plentiful, and open 20 hours a day. We were ecstatic to see a really large selection of fresh fruits and an extensive array of salads, areas often overlooked by cruise ships. Then there’s oven-baked pizzas, pastas, hot-dogs, burgers, artisan cheeses, cold cuts, and a whole host of other Mediterranean and ethnic delicacies.

 

If those don’t tickle your palate, you can always hop over to the nearest Gelateria on the ship and binge on a few scoops of luscious Italian gelato or velvety smooth ice-cream shakes. We suggest the insanely scrumptious Nutella Shake – you can always work it out at the gym later in the day 😉

 

However the 7 course sit-down dinners in the main dining rooms are a bit lack lustre. The food tastes essentially the same as buffet food. Hurried plating lets it down further. But MSC Preziosa has a host of à la carte fine-dining restaurants that serve impeccable food and do justice to the rich flavours and scents of the Mediterranean. We absolutely loved the food at Galaxy, located on the 16th floor. The restaurant offers a stunning panoramic view of the ship and its surroundings. If you visit Galaxy, you must try the chef’s signature Cod Tagine and Dark Chocolate Mousse – the stuff epicurean dreams are made of 🙂

 

buffet restaurants on MSC Preziosa

There is no shortage of tables at the buffet restaurants on MSC Preziosa

 

buffet restaurants on MSC Preziosa

Yay – MSC Preziosa has a wide array of fresh fruits and salads on offer

 

buffet restaurants on MSC Preziosa

Our favourite table at the buffet restaurant – it had to be by the sea 🙂

 

buffet restaurants on MSC Preziosa

MSC Preziosa prides itself on its Mediterranean ethic – there is definitely no shortage of pizzas here

 

main dining area on MSC Preziosa

An good selection of wine = A satiated man 😉

 

Main dining area on MSC Preziosa

The main dining area – MSC Preziosa

 

Galaxy, a speciality restaurant on MSC Preziosa's 16th floor

Check out the view from Galaxy, a speciality restaurant on MSC Preziosa’s 16th floor

 

Food at Galaxy, a speciality restaurant on MSC Preziosa's 16th floor

The dark chocolate mousse at Galaxy – nom!

 

 

THE PORTS AND EXCURSIONS

MSC Preziosa sails in the Mediterranean and offers an exciting array of destinations – who doesn’t want a li’l taste of Greece, Turkey, Italy, and Croatia all in the space of one holiday? 🙂

 

Most of the ports on this itinerary boast of UNESCO Heritage Sites, stunning Roman ruins, culturally-rich town centres, and offbeat attractions. The selection of ports is bound to tickle your fancy irrespective of whether you’re a wine connoisseur (Dubrovnik), gourmand (Istanbul), history buff (Olympia), or hopeless romantic (Venice).  The ship docks at ports for anywhere between 8-15 hours. Cruise holidays offer the perfect opportunity to sample a number of destinations, a tasting platter if you may. You can visit the ones you enjoy at leisure at a later stage.

 

There are a number of excursions offered onboard the ship for each port. Pick one that suits your taste. However if you, like us, enjoy exploring cities independently, then make sure you research beforehand. Read up on the best way to get from the port to the city and back and plan a rough itinerary before you embark on your cruise holiday.

 

Savi Vid Bruised Passports Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik old town is one of the gorgeous ports frequented by MSC Preziosa

 

MSC Preziosa review ports

Gondolas in Venice – the perfect port for incurable romantics

 

MSC Preziosa review ports

The two of us in Venice

 

MSC Preziosa review ports

The Roman Ruins of Ephesus in Turkey

 

MSC Preziosa review ports

The two of us in Istanbul, one of our favourite stops on MSC Preziosa’s Mediterranean voyage

 

 

THE SPA

What vacation is complete without a visit (or three!) to the spa?! MSC Preziosa’s Aurea Spa offers everything from manicures and pedicures to hair styling and professional makeup that will get you preened for black-tie dinners in no time. But the star of the show, according to us, is the body massage – we opted for a couples’ massage in a specially appointed room overlooking the sea. We had to tear ourselves away from the window but it was well worth it – the masseurs onboard MSC Preziosa are exceptional and their nimble fingers ensure complete relaxation. They were so good that we actually went back for seconds the next day – highly recommended after a tiring day spent exploring an exotic port.

 

MSC Preziosa Review spa

MSC Preziosa’s spa is a haven of peace and quiet

 

MSC Preziosa Review-spa

The spa overlooks the sea

 

http://www.rickshawtravel.co.uk/

Make sure you try the Balinese massage at Aurea Spa. It will transport you to Asia within minutes

 

MSC Preziosa Review-spa

Unsurprisingly most of the masseurs are from Bali 🙂

 

MSC Preziosa Review Spa

MSC Preziosa’s Spa is definitely worth a visit

 

 

PROS AND CONS

CONS

  • As with any cruise ship, public areas can get crowded during the day, especially around the pools.
  • The food in the main dining room in the evenings left us wanting more.

 

PROS

  • Cabins are spacious, well appointed, and clean.
  • Buffets offer an incredible variety of tasty food.
  • Service is exceptional, discreet, and friendly.
  • The wine list is remarkable and all cocktails are downright delectable – we reached this conclusion after A LOT of research 😉
  • The ship offers a variety of spectacular panoramic experiences – the infinity pool, Galaxy restaurant, and the Vertigo water slide.
  • The ports of call are culturally and historically rich – each city is better than the last.
  • This cruise is competitively priced and offers great value for money

 

 

MSC Preziosa Review

A week on MSC Preziosa = happy bunnies

 

MSC Cruise Holidays start at £500/ 7 nights per person for an inside cabin. This price includes accommodation, all meals (except for meals at their á la carte restaurants), and evening entertainment shows. More information on their website http://www.msccruises.co.uk/

 

Are you fascinated by Cruise Holidays? Here’s a selection of our articles on cruises 🙂

5 Easy Tips To Explore Ports On Your Cruise Holidays

Cruise Holidays :- Fine Dining On A Budget

Packing for Cruises – The Accessories Edit

 

 

We were guests of MSC Cruises. We are two extremely opinionated ninjas – so all views (hyperbolic, good, and bad) are entirely our own. Click on to read our full Disclosure Policy

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46 Comments

  1. Whoa !!! Amazing post savi and Vid. And the details . Amazing . 🙂 . Loved reading every bit of it. and thank you for telling teh price at the end. 500 pounds for 7 nights of luxury for one person doesnt sound too expensive.

    Kapil wants to do a cruise from such a long time , and i was always very negative around it. But i think this post will change muy mind 😛 .

    • Hey Sonal – you should definitely look into going on a cruise holiday. It can be a lot of fun 🙂 Moreover it’s good value for money because it includes accommodation, food, and entertainment. You can get amazing deals if you shop around – take a look at our other articles on cruises for pointers

  2. I am drooling over the post. You both looking soo gorgeous. It has become one of my favorite post from you guys!
    Love youu two<3

    • Aww thanks a million Somya 🙂 This post took a long time to write but we wanted to include all the photos and information we possibly could

  3. What decadent indulgence! The pictures look like BLISS. What else could one want on a cruise, sigh. <3

    • Thanks Amiya – it was one week of complete and utter relaxation 🙂

  4. Thanks for such a detailed post guys – really appreciate it! My wife and I were considering cruises departing from Southampton for October ’14 but we’re now seriously considering Preziosa after reading your review. I can already visualise myself in that infinity pool 😉 Was embarkation and disembarkation with MSC Cruises smooth for you?

    • Hey Ani – go for it. MSC Preziosa is a great ship. We’ve been on a fair few cruise ships, but it was definitely one of our favourites.

      We did see long queues at embarkation and disembarkation but we opted for priority embarkation and priority disembarkation because we’ve had a nightmarish boarding experience with another cruise line in the past. The extra money is well worth it because embarkation and disembarkation took us less than 10 minutes 🙂

  5. these r the best bunch of photos !!!! it all seems so extravagant and attractive !!! i just cant stop staring at the breathtaking views … lovely pools of good water !!! sophistication defined !!!!! 🙂 😀

    • Hey Kushagr – glad you enjoyed the photos. MSC Preziosa is a good lookin’ ship and then there are the sparkling blue waters of The Mediterranean Sea 🙂

  6. We have been on Celebrity a couple of times and loved it. The MSC ship looks pretty good and the itinerary that you guys did looks spot on. That balcony is massive – never seen such a big one before. What cabin was that ?

    Love the pictures you guys have uploaded. Nicely done !

    • Hey Mark we opted for a cabin towards the rear of the ship where balconies tend to be larger than those that are mid ship. However you can feel the movement of the ship a bit more in the cabins at the end of the ship – it might be something to keep in mind while booking your cruise 🙂

  7. Oh wow this actually sounds like a dream! My boyfriend keeps asking to go on a cruise and this might actually have convinced me. I love the rooms, that balcony looks fab. Oh and an infinity pool? Yes please!
    xx

    • Lucinda so happy to hear our review of MSC Preziosa convinced you to try a Cruise Holiday. You should definitely give it a go – hope you enjoy it 🙂

  8. fantastic, loved the photos as usual, you make an extremely handsome couple 😀 looks like a wonderful way to spend a holiday x

    we’ve just got back from Northern Ireland, absolutely LOVED it <3

    • Aww thanks for indulging us Eileen 🙂 We go on a number of hectic road trips and city breaks throughout the year, so our Cruise Holidays provide the perfect excuse to kick back and truly relax

  9. Oh wow you’ve really made me want a holiday now! How amazing!

    • Hehe, that means we’ve been successful 😉

  10. Great review, I have only been on cruises with Princess, but this MSC ship looks incredible. Certainly looks like you guys had a great time and were very well looked after. The Mediterranean is by far my favourite place to cruise

    • Hey Lyn – MSC Preziosa is quite an amazing ship and we had a great time 🙂 The Mediterranean is the perfect area for cruises. Then again, we have yet to go on a Caribbean Cruise 😉

  11. The cruise is so amazing. I used to be on a cruise in Ha Long bay ($150/3 night) but compare to this, it look like a popular boat!

    • Hey Dat – we took a river cruise in Vietnam too and enjoyed it. But those boats aren’t meant for very long cruises. On the other hand, these cruise liners are like sailing cities 🙂

  12. Oh my God, now I REALLY want to go on a cruise! It looks incredible! I always thought that cruises were for the over 50s and families but, actually, I think it’s probably a really nice, relaxing way to see a different place every day. And the views, wow 🙂

    Now I just need to see if I can actually afford one! 🙂

    • Beverley you should definitely give it one shot. We love cruise holidays – perfect way to unwind after a couple of hectic road trips 😉

  13. Oh, wow!!!! I was breathless for quite sometime after looking at those gorgeous, gorgeous photos!! Vid could give many professional photographers a run for their money. And the cruise itself, it looks amazing. I want to go on one tooo!! Savi, I don’t know if I’ve said this before, but I love the way you write. I got so pulled in that I had to blink at my surroundings and remember that I’m actually nowhere near the ocean 😛

    • Hey Ramya – that is the greatest compliment ever. Thanks a ton – it’s always good to know people are actually reading in today’s day and age when most just browse through photos. I really wanted the article to convey what a wonderful time we had on board MSC Preziosa 🙂 I must show your comment to Vid – he’ll be well chuffed. He loves spending ‘quality time’ with his camera 😉

  14. Hey, I loved this article you guys I’ve been planning to gift a cruise to my mum and dad for their anniversary and would love it to be this one. Does MSC Preziosa sail to other destinations as well? I love this itinerary but they want to go in January and I know how cold Europe can be during winte

    • Hey Eileen – MSC Preziosa sails around the Mediterranean. It is definitely quite cold in Europe during winter but I think the ship is in South America at the time, which offers perfect weather. You can check out all details over at the MSC website linked in the article above 🙂

  15. Great pictures! I think it all depends on which cruise and where you are cruising, right? The giant cities on water are all decked out (pun intended) but you can easily get lost and overwhelmed. Smaller, luxury cruise lines have a much different experience to offer.

    • Hey Tamara that’s true – however I have to say I quite enjoy the anonymity afforded by a larger ship 🙂

  16. I need to take this cruise fo’sho!

    ∞ tanvii.com ∞

    • Tanvi you do – you also need to hop over across the pond and see me 😀

  17. Spending some Romantic moments on cruise in Mediterranean..!!

    • Absolutely 🙂

  18. Thank you guys for this detailed post. Loved every bit of it specially the awesome view and most of all loved looking at you gorgeous couple. The photos are absolutely gorgeous. Going on a cruise is one of the things on my bucket list and it just jumped to the number one spot. :)I’m a student but the 1st thing i’m going to do once I graduate is start saving up for my travels.
    I’ve always loved traveling and food. but you guys and your posts have inspired me to start writing about my love for food and i have thank you guys for that. And I hope to get as good as you guys at it.Thank you and Lots Of Love

    • Hey Akshatha – that’s awesome. We hope you enjoy blogging as much as we do 🙂 So happy to hear you enjoyed the photos and our review of MSC Preziosa – hope you get to enjoy a cruise holiday super soon

  19. Loved this post. extremely well-written and the photos are amazing. Adding this cruise to my to-travel list 🙂

    Especially loved your look in the pic captioned- The two of us in Istanbul, one of our favourite stops on MSC Preziosa’s Mediterranean voyage

    Are those printed trousers? Where from? 😀

    • Thanks a ton Madhuri – so glad you enjoyed it. Yes, those are printed trousers indeed – they’re from Primark 🙂

  20. that review is as detailed as it gets , thanks , I had a question since you have been on the cruise , me my wife and our 2year old son will be going on this cruise next month , do they have a vegetarian Indian menu ? as our child is a vegetarian.

    • Hi Himanshu

      Glad you enjoyed the review 🙂 Yep, all cruise ships have a wide range of vegetarian options. However we don’t know about the availability of Indian food as we like to sample local food when we’re travelling. MSC is an Italian cruise line and they do scrumptious Italian food

  21. Wow, you can tell you were guests of MSC. Everyone elses reviews were pretty bad..

    • Hey,

      Like with everything else on the internet, you’ll find good and bad reviews for MSC (or any other cruise company for that matter). MSC Preziosa is one of the latest ships and we could see that. There were certain things we didn’t like and we have clearly mentioned that in our review 🙂

      We have been on over a dozen cruises and MSC Preziosa was one of the best ships we’ve been on (within lower/mid-range cruise ships). Of course, you are free to read other reviews on the internet and make an informed decision – the choice is yours.

      Cheers

  22. what camera was used to take these photos?

    • Hey Natasha – I use a Nikon D 610 🙂

  23. Hey Guys,
    That’s an awesome site you have.

    Do you know if MSC still has the itinerary that you went on?

    Thanks

    • Thanks a ton 🙂 Yep, MSC has several Mediterranean cruises that stop in Turkey, Greece, Croatia, Italy etc. Just pick one that suits the number of days you have at hand.

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