Embarkation | MSC – Bellissima | Friday | Dubai | UAE
Today we embarked on the MSC Bellissimo in Dubai. Embarkation was painless and fairly seamless. The rest the day wasn’t so much. Since we were group at six we wanted to be tracking bracelets, so we could figure out where everybody was. Getting them was more than a hassle, it became a nightmare. Just under two hours to figure it out. The actual device was (is) horrible. Wound up going to the front desk to try to have them figure out what was wrong and at least one of the devices wasn’t working. All in all, it’s a pretty bad system they have in place. When you try to use them to pay at a bar typically they don’t work, so you just give your room card anyhow. Which makes the bracelets almost useless. To add insult to injury, they make you pay for them. Right around €10 a piece. (Depending on which package you get and how many.) We were just on the Sky Princess, and at least that part of it worked really well. Maybe they should take some lessons from Princess Cruises.
Smoking: We know Europeans love to smoke, and they are allowed to smoke on the pool deck. It’s unfortunate, because it’s still a nasty habit. For those of us who don’t smoke, you have to avoid the main pool deck area unless you want to smell smoke.
Beautiful Ship: The ship is quite wonderful in terms of its build quality and public space architecture. The main lobby and promenade ceiling is covered with this huge LCD screen which is just amazing. The public spaces are really well done. Probably the best I’ve seen on any large ship.￼
Automatic Doors: It’s odd that some of the doors actually require you to open them, and some of them have a button to open them, which is not good in terms of making the ship more immune to Norovirus. This kind of interaction in public places leads to bad things that spread quickly.
Door Slamming: on deck 11, for some reason, the cabin doors don’t easily close. Maybe this is by design so that you have to put your key card up to the door to loosen the lock mechanism, or just slam it. Most people haven’t figured it out yet.
Masters of karaoke Pro: they do a wonderful job at the karaoke bar. Best I’ve seen in any ship so far.
Chocolate Art: The culinary adventures aboard the ship in the Promenade are pretty amazing.
No Soap: ships are getting real good about putting wash stations before restaurants, to help prevent the spread of anything. The issue is if there is no soap in the dispensers to wash your hands with, doesn’t make the washing stations very meaningful. Three times in a row, no soap.
Reserve and pay for as much as you can in advance, since the passenger service desk is very crowded. Get to know the ship and most convenient ways to travel around the ship using stairs and elevators in relation to your cabin. This can be done with your app, or with a traditional map.
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