by Linda Coffman
Cruises’ Kids Sail Free program (children 11 and under are
free and children 12 to 17 as the 3rd and
4th occupants in a stateroom are $99 each), a cruise is a great value for
families and there were many multi-generation family groups on
board during our week-long sailing. Good news for parents who want to
take advantage of a shore excursion without their children is that
the Kids Club is open on port days for most destinations.
"I Puffi (The Smurfs)" Club Facilities for children and
Graffiti's for teens include
dedicated play/club rooms, outdoor play spaces, a kiddy-pool, and a video arcade.
Activities for younger cruisers included games, arts & crafts,
and activites, including ping-pong and foosball, and soccer in the
sports court. Teens had pizza
parties and disco dancing on their schedules. There is even a
kid-sized area in the buffet restaurant.
the most popular spots on board for kids and their parents during
our cruise were the ping pong and foosball tables and the twisty
When we did see them, the kids were having a blast
with their families and staff counselors.
Just For Adults
Divina's Aurea Spa gets
high marks for one of the most tranquil settings at sea. In addition
to a full menu of treatments that range from salon services to
relaxing Balinese massages and body treatments, there is acupuncture
to relieve anxiety and stress, pressure point therapy, treatments
designed specifically for men, and even a healthy juice bar. If you can't
tear yourself away from the pool, the massage therapists come to you—offering
Naturally, those services come with a price, but there is a
complete fitness center that is complimentary (to
enter, you must wear gym shoes and that requirement is strictly
enforced). Most exercise classes
are also complimentary, but
there is a nominal charge for some. Unique to MSC Divina is Aqua
Cycling in the infinity pool. Spa/fitness facilities
also feature a
hydromassage pool and
complimentary saunas and steam rooms.
While the ultimate in privacy aboard MSC Divina
is naturally within the confines of the exclusive Yacht Club, there
is another spot where serenity is available at a much more
budget-friendly daily price. Out of the way on Deck 18 (and almost
difficult to find) is Top 18, the adults-only sun spot high atop the
ship. Furnished with fashionable cushioned rattan sun beds, regular
lounging sun beds with flip up shades at the head, and a large
whirlpool, the area is a haven of solitude and quiet. As you’d
expect, there’s also a small bar within Top 18 for refreshments.
Towels are provided, so just bring your tanning lotion and catch
|Aqua Park Pool
|Piazza del Doge
|The Atrium with Crystal
For Passengers of all Ages
MSC Divina has a whopping nine hot
tubs and three swimming pools for watery enjoyment. The main Aqua
Park pool has a children's splash pool located alongside it and
features a waterfall and numerous water jets and sprays in the
splash area. Under a sliding magrodome roof that can be closed when
the weather is uncooperative, is Le Sirene Solarium with a swimming
pool that also features a small waterfall and a fountain with lights
that change color. The Garden Pool aft is more adult-oriented with
its Zen area for lounging that creates an "infinity" pool
atmosphere. Nearby is Le Prue, more secluded areas on either side of
the deck, each with a hot tub. Other hot tubs are located near the
Aqua Park and Le Sirene pools. Bars with roving waiters are located
near each pool area to provide refreshments.
Activities & Entertainment
From a solo saxophone, a rocking duo, and classical
trio, to dueling pianos, bands for dancing under the stars, and high
energy production shows, there’s music all around aboard MSC Divina.
In the reception lobby and on the decks surrounding it above we enjoyed
classical favorites performed on piano and strings. Pianist duos
duel it out playing audience requests in the Golden Jazz Bar and
musicians fill La Luna Piano Bar with some of the most beautiful
songs ever written. In the Piazza del Doge and a variety of lounges,
other artists fill the dance floors with their hot Latin, rock,
Motown, and Island sounds. International music with a Caribbean
flavor in Black and White Lounge and live bands on deck poolside
round out dance music. And that’s just a sample of the talented
artists that entertain nightly aboard MSC Divina.
Nightly shows in the Pantheon Theatre focus on performances created
for the international audience onboard with heavy emphasis on visual
entertainments—including amazing Cirque-style acrobatics,
dance troupes, and adagio teams that
perform along with talented singers. Production show themes include
a tribute to popular operatic arias,
Michael Jackson, and Frank Sinatra, as well as
pirate stories, Wonderland (as in Alice and other characters from
Through the Looking Glass), and the Witches of Paris, French variety
at its best.
All shows are beautifully executed, but a personal favorite during our
cruise was “Simply Italian,” featuring the songs of Italy and a
surprise for the American guests on board MSC Divina. Toward the end
of the show the stairs behind the lead male vocalist lit up in red,
white, and blue as he executed a stunning rendition of The Star
Spangled Banner. When those of us from the United States stood in
honor of our national anthem, many of the guests from other
countries did so as well, making it a heartwarming experience. Of
course the show ended with the emotional Con te Partiro, known to
English speakers as Time to Say Goodbye and, for most Americans,
probably the most recognizable of Italian songs.
And there’s even more. Other entertainment includes Cinema al
Fresco—poolside movies and recorded concerts under the stars—as well
as late night adult comedy and dancing into the wee hours in the
Many daytime activities are scheduled poolside with early morning
aerobics, mid-day trivia, dance lessons, and crafts classes. Mixed
in are silly pool games and shuffleboard and ping pong tournaments.
Bingo is, of course, a cruise staple, as is
gaming in the casino. Fruit and vegetable carving and cooking
demonstrations were also on the schedule, along with wine and
and cocktail demonstrations. Italian language lessons are as
popular as eating pizza on board.
We can't praise MSC Divina's highly energetic Entertainment Team enough.
From early morning until the wee hours they led activities at a pace
that we could only dream of following and kept everyone engaged.
Some things deserve special mention and one of them in
Internet age is communication access. We travel with a personal laptop, which enables the
Cruise Diva Blog to be published "live from sea" during cruises, and
usually connect to the Internet utilizing ships' wireless systems.
Aboard MSC Divina we found excellent
service offered in several packages and the speed was almost as fast as some broadband connections ashore.
A virtually non-smoking ship, MSC Divina restricts smoking in all
accommodations and balconies. Guests who smoke cigarettes, cigars,
and pipes are invited light up in the dedicated Cigar Lounge on Deck
6, on one side of the Aqua Pool on Deck 14, and at an outside area
behind the Library on Deck 16, all designated by signage. In the
Casino, management may designate certain slot machines and/or table
games where guests are permitted to smoke cigarettes only while they
Itineraries & More
With only one ship homeported in Miami, MSC Divina
covers the Caribbean, offering alternating Eastern and Western
itineraries that can be combined for a two-week voyage.
Images © CruiseDiva.com
Cruise Diva's "Live" Blogs
from MSC Divina:
At Home Aboard MSC Divina
MSC Divina at Sea
“Top 18” Aboard MSC Divina
MSC Divina: Delicious Dining
MSC Divina: Divine Entertainment
MSC Divina Visits Ports of Call
MSC Divina’s Yacht Club
MSC Divina Visits Great Stirrup Cay
More MSC Cruises