6am and the M25 is empty as we make our way to Gatwick for the early flight to Genoa. After a comfortable flight with British Airways we arrive a few minutes late and are met by our transport which takes us to the cruise terminal. The sun is shining and it’s a warm 27c as we glimpse our first sighting of MSC Splendida with her huge white superstructure and dark blue funnel. Boarding is simplicity itself, if only boarding at all ports was this easy. From arrival at the cruise terminal to onboard in our cabin 35 minutes. Cabin 9007 is a grade S3 and situated at the front of the ship with floor to ceiling windows giving a panoramic view over the bow. Teal Blue carpet with matching bed covers, bolsters and headboard contrasted with dark wood but beige walls and large mirrors give this cabin a quality feel. The bathroom with its bath, basin and toilet is a good size. The magnifying mirror is a boon for shaving. Wardrobe and drawer space is exceptional with enough room for a world cruise let alone for only 7 days. By the dressing table are 4 electrical sockets. 2 European 2 pin at 220v and 2 American ay 110v. A hand held hair dryer is supplied and the welcoming fruit bowl and bottle of Asti do not go amiss. Unpacked it is time to find a bar for glass of chilled Rose, my favourite tipple as regular readers know. Problem is which bar, there are so many beautifully furnished bars and lounges it is difficult to know which one to select. Finally we settle for the L’Aperitivo Bar on deck 6. The wine is excellent as is the service. This is a big ship with a maximum capacity of nearly 4,400 passengers. Deck 14 houses the Aqua Park with its pools and water spraying palm trees, the area is inundated with children enjoying themselves in the sun whilst the parents look on. On the same deck is L’Equatore, a covered pool, again a delight for the children on board.
The afternoon passes quickly and soon dinner time arrives. We have selected early sitting, 7pm which fits in with our normal meals times but is early for continentals. 2nd sitting is 9.30pm. We have been allocated Villa Verde Restaurant on deck 6 and table 973, a table for two overlooking the stern. Mussels in a Red Wine Sauce to start followed by a tangy white bean soup with a main course of Shoulder of Pork and Roast Potato’s. For sweet is has to be the mixed ice cream which is so smooth it just glides down. The view is beautiful, romantic, seeing our wash disappear into the blue yonder. As we leave our table the sun is sinking into the west with its final rays glistening on a smooth blue Mediterranean Sea. It’s time for a G&T and then bed, it’s been a long day and tomorrow we arrive in Naples.
- Read MSC Cruises Splendida – Day 2
- Read MSC Cruises Splendida – Day 3
- Read MSC Cruises Splendida – Day 4
- Read MSC Cruises Splendida – Day 5
- Read MSC Cruises Splendida – Day 6
- Read MSC Cruises Splendida – Final Day