We’ve written some guides for people who haven’t yet had the chance to try out the ship – whether you have booked or are thinking about booking, read our guides for plenty of tips and advice!
Our first guide is a full deck-by-deck guide of the entire ship. MSC Meraviglia is a big ship (at the time of writing – the 5th biggest cruise ship in the world!) and it will take you a day or two to navigate her fully. Thankfully, you can use this guide to familiarise yourself with the ship and whilst onboard there are TV screens located by most venues and in every lift lobby on each deck. Simply touch them to find a place you wish to go to or where you are! Additionally, you can use the MSC for Me App to navigate around the ship too.[xyz-ihs snippet=”bc-inarticle”]
These are crew only decks and you won’t be down here anytime soon!
This deck is primarily used for tender access and also the Medical Centre is based on this deck. This deck is also sometimes used for wheelchair access gangway (check in the Daily Program or with the reception at the port though!)
This deck is the most popular deck to embark and disembark the ship. There are usually several gangways attached to this deck (depending on the port). You’ll also find the Infinity Bar, Infinity Atrium (complete with the start of the famous crystal staircase), Infinity Reception and also the Business Centre (located to the left of reception) and finally the MSC Excursions self-service desks allowing you to book your excursions 24/7. Often, a pop-up Cirque du Soleil at Sea stand is located here to book tickets for the two nightly shows available during your cruise.
Live music is often performed in the Infinity Atrium from a pianist to a live singer or MC on Gala Nights. Heading further back, past reception you’ll find access to the 600-seat Waves Restaurant which is open for Breakfast and Lunch daily (no reservations required).
From the front of the ship you have The Broadway Theatre, this is actually two decks high, but only accessible from Deck 6.
Immediately behind the theatre, heading to the rear of the ship you enter Galleria Meraviglia – the 80m long indoor promenade, with the world’s longest LED dome screen!
The promenade is on two tiers, we’ll cover the lower level and the left-hand side first. First, you have the Meraviglia Bar & Lounge, followed by the Jean-Philippe Chocolate & Cafe, MSC Excursions desk (this is manned) then Plaza Meraviglia which contains some of the onboard shops (Mini Mall and two shops which sell Perfumes & Cosmetics and the other Watches & Sunglasses. There are also pop-up shops here whilst at sea.
On the right-hand side of Galleria Meraviglia from the front, we have the Boutique which sells clothes, accessories and jewelllery, Eataly Food Market, Jean-Philippe Crêpes & Gelato Bar, Eataly Ristorante Italiano & Chef’s Table, finally La Vetrina which offers spa and beauty products. The MSC Logo Shop is then situated around the corner.
After you exit the Galleria Meraviglia, you’ll find a large area surrounding the atrium. On the left-hand side is the EDGE Cocktail Bar with seating also to the right-hand side.
Immediately behind this area are the MSC PhotoShop and MSC Photo Gallery where you can buy photo equipment and browse your cruise photos. As you head further back you’ll enter a very wide corridor containing the Emotions – Immersive Gallery. From here you can use small kiosks to choose and purchase the photos that have been taken of you throughout the cruise.
Next up as you continue to the rear of the ship is the L’Olivo D’oro restaurant on the left and the L’Olive Doree restaurant on the right. These are two of the four main dining rooms on the ship and you will be automatically allocated one before embarkation.
If you walk past both of these you’ll arrive at another main dining room – The Panorama Restaurant. This restaurant is for MSC Anytime Dining guests and spans the entire width of the ship, with panoramic views out to sea.
Starting at the front of the ship we have the MSC Aurea Spa which spans the entire width of the ship, offering many facilities.
Immediately behind this, we enter the upper tier of Galleria Meraviglia. On the left-hand side is the TV Studio & Bar venue. Walking down the right-hand side we have the Brass Anchor Pub, followed by Kaito Sushi Bar and Kaito Teppanyaki speciality restaurants. Crossing over to the left-hand side we have the Butcher’s Cut speciality restaurant.
At the rear of the Galleria Meraviglia, we have the Champagne Bar, the bar is located on the left-hand side with additional seating on the right-hand side.
Immediately behind this is the entrance to Casino Imperiale which spans the entire width of the ship.
If you walk all the way through this, you’ll end up at the Carousel Lounge, the home of the Cirque du Soleil at Sea theatre shows. Visit during the day to see a beautiful panorama from the back of the ship or at night for a stunning show!
All of these decks are accommodation-only decks and don’t feature ship facilities or services. Each deck is serviced by two sets of eight lifts (forward and mid-ships) and two further panoramic lifts located towards the front of the ship either side.[xyz-ihs snippet=”bc-inarticle”]
Starting at the front of the ship we have the Bamboo Pool and Solarium. This is a covered pool with a retractable roof and is split into two levels. On the lower level, you’ll find the pool and hot tubs with the Bamboo Bar at the rear.
As you leave the Bamboo Bar & Pool area you’ll enter into the Atmosphere Pool area, first is the Atmosphere Pool Bar North which is a covered, but outdoor bar handy to the pool.
The pool is open during port and sea days, depending on the weather. Sunbeds are first-come, first-serve and are free.
At the rear of the Atmosphere Pool, you’ll find the rear splits into two venues. On the left is the Atmosphere Pool Bar South. On the right, the Atmosphere Ice Cream Bar combined with the Marketplace Buffet grab and go section.
Continuing to the rear and now inside, you enter the expansive Marketplace Buffet which spans the entire width of the ship. In here the buffet is split into several different seating areas with a large counter that runs the entire buffet offering a wide selection of foods.
At the rear of the Marketplace buffet, you can sit at a rear terrace if you wish. This isn’t very busy as most people miss it!
At the front of the ship is an entrance to the MSC Yacht Club and the Top Sail Lounge, this is by keycard access only for MSC Yacht Club passengers. Walking back, through the lift lobby you’ll enter the upper level of the Bamboo Pool & Solarium. There are numerous tables and chairs around here and table football games too. As you leave this area you’ll enter the upper level of the Atmosphere Pool.
During the day you’ll find sunbeds available for use, again on a first-come, first-serve basis.
As you head towards mid-ships you can either follow the deck around the ship that continues to the rear or you can walk across the ship from one side to the other. It is also here that the power walking and running track are located.
In the middle of the ship now you’ll find the nearly full-width MSC Gym by Technogym containing the latest gym equipment by Technogym and the starting place for several fitness classes.
Walking further back, you’ll enter the fun and activities area, known as the Sportplex. It starts with the 4D Cinema, the Flight Simulator, the F1 Simulator, Arcade games, Bowling and the Sports Bar. The indoor Sportplex arena is also located here, offering kids (and adult) games such as badminton, football and others.
As you leave the Sportplex you’ll pass the Horizon Bar which directly overlooks the Horizon Amphitheatre; a series of stepped deck areas offering sunbeds and views over the rear of the ship. As you head down the steps to the bottom of the Horizon Amphitheatre you’ll find the Horizon Pool and deck space to walk around.
Don’t worry, you’ve not missed one! There isn’t a Deck 17 as seventeen in Italian culture is considered an unlucky number! If you view 17 as a Roman numeral (XVII) it is changed anagrammatically to VIXI which in Latin translates to “I have lived” or “My life is over”. So you won’t find a Deck 17 on any MSC cruise ships!
At the front of the ship is access for MSC Yacht Club guests only and contains the MSC Yacht Club Restaurant.
Heading back through the lift lobby you’ll have to head down a deck to continue walking outside of the ship.
In the middle of the ship on Deck 18 you’ll find the Sky Lounge, a large panoramic bar with floor-to-ceiling windows giving you a 180-degree view forwards over the Atmosphere Pool and to the sides of the ship, excellent for sea days or arriving/leaving ports. The bar up here offers table service.
Walking to the rear of the ship you now enter the area for children’s activities which includes Doremi Lab, Baby Club Chicco, Junior & Mini Club Lego, Doremi Studio and the Young/Teen Club Attic, complete with soft drinks bar!
You can walk out of the rear from here and head down a deck to the Horizon Amphitheatre or head up to Deck 19.
Deck 19 is only available at the front of the ship for MSC Yacht Club passengers which includes their Solarium Grill, Pool, Sundeck and Bar areas. Again, access by key card only.
Top 19 for MSC Aurea guests is located on this deck (at the rear), passes are available to purchase on a daily or per-cruise basis.
At the rear of the ship Deck 19 is also the Polar Aquapark which spans the entire width of the ship. There are many splash pools here and access to the three free waterslides. This facility is open during port and sea days, depending on weather, (times are in the Daily Program).
We hope you enjoyed Part 1 of our Everything MSC Meraviglia guide series! Next up will be the Eating and Drinking options available on the ship![xyz-ihs snippet=”bc-inarticle”]