King sized beds, Cirque du Soleil shows and dozens of staircases lashed in Swarovski crystals. The decision to board the MSC Bellissima should not be taken lightly.
Why? Because the £750million ship, which launched in March this year, will taint almost every other cruising experience in your past, present and future.
Metro.co.uk was invited aboard the luxurious floating hotel to see and explore the liner, which is the newest of MSCs ships to take to the seas.
And what an experience it was…
Where to sleep
Walking into the promenade is like entering another world. Guided in through two sets of double doors, I went into the lobby with my mum Vicki and nan Gloria. Its Mothers Day weekend and the ship is the perfect place to celebrate – from Balinese spa treatments to crab legs and lobster (a personal highlight for my nan).
The entire ship is bedecked with crystals and chandeliers that lead you to the front desk. Its easy to see why the Bellissima cost such a pretty penny.
After a swift check-in, we were given the keys to our rooms and greeted with one of the welcome packs offered by MSC, loaded with champagne and strawberries.
We were staying in two of the ships balcony rooms, which are housed with everything anyone could ever need.
With a luxurious king-sized bed with pillows to die for, to tiny toiletries and a mirror on every corner, you would expect nothing less on a ship this glamourous.
Each room also comes with its own personal assistant, Zoe – think Amazon Alexa at sea. She can speak seven languages and answers more than 800 questions, including what bars are open?.
Oh, and the technology is incredible. I was particularly impressed by the touch-sensitive lights and the convenient USB ports – perhaps adapters are a thing of the past.
Where to eat
The outstanding surroundings were so beautiful that it made it difficult to tear ourselves away for dinner, but the ships main dining room was no exception.
The stunning modern eatery, Posidonia, makes it no secret that it prides itself on its menus choices – with MSCs latest partnership with chef Raymond Blanc.
Each cruiser is assigned a table and a dining room for their holiday, meaning you get to form brilliant relationships with your servers… but that doesnt mean to say you have to eat there each evening.
The ship has an impressive 12 dining venues, ranging from The Marketplace – a 24 hour buffet – to its speciality restaurants located in the Galleria, complete with an enormous 80 metre LED sky, the largest dome at sea.
These include LAtelier Bistrot for French cuisine, Hola! for tapas, Butchers Cut for meat-lovers and Kaito Teppanyaki and Sushi Bar, for those who like something different.
Theres even a classic British pub and Jean Phillipes cafe, where staff create handmade chocolate treats. What more could you want?
We tried Butchers Cut towards the end of our trip and the starter sizes alone were enough to call a meal! To say that we inhaled our food would be an understatement, it really is worth the visit.
Where to drink
After a delightful meal, we headed to one of the ships 20 bars. Yes, 20.
Here, it became apparent that even on a ship of this size, the staff made it their job to know your name.
Three glasses of champagne were placed down while the barman, who would have given Tom Cruise a run for his money in 1988 hit Cocktail, showed off his skills gave a whipped us up a couple of drinks. One gin based, one vodka – and a latte for nan.
Around the enormous 1,036ft ship (and all of its 19 decks) are an array of different bars and lounges. A personal favourite was the stylish champagne bar, which offered a vast choice of bubblies from around the world and a selection of caviar, oysters and crab too. Fancy.
Where to be entertained
As my mother, an annual cruiser, said: You really cannot fault the entertainment on this ship.
Shortly after boarding the Bellissima, we were offered tickets for a performance by Cirque du Soleil, which naturally, we snapped up. The incredible performers really were a highlight for me during our week cruising the Mediterranean.
MSC offers exclusive world-class broadway shows onboard the Bellissima, with performances taking place across all of their innovative venues like the multi-purpose karaoke bar, comedy club, TV studio & Bar.
And for the gamblers on board, the visual delights continue inside the ships casino which leads into a Carousel Lounge, a £17million space which offers panoramic views and houses shows at night.
Luckily for those who like a drink and a dance (like me), MSC were kind enough to build the Attic Club, a nightclub that stays open and lively right up until the small hours.
Younger guests can take advantage of the amusement park, water parks and sports centre to play sports and games during the daytime and party and dance in the evening.
We may not be classed as young guests but we still made the most of the shiRead More – Source