MSC Orchestra

MSC Orchestra

MSC Orchestra arrives in Port Everglades, Florida for the first time. Photo courtesy of MSC Cruises

MSC Orchestra Overview

MSC’s second megaship, the 92,409-ton, 2,550-guest Orchestra debuted in May 2007. With slightly more refined interiors than her older sister Musica, she offers a style that really screams what she is: a modern Italian cruise ship — a little bit stylish, a little bit showy, a little bit sequins-and-heels, a little bit skimpy bathing suit by the pool, and a lot cool Roman ciao, bella.

MSC Orchestra Public Rooms

Enjoy a game of chance at the Palm Beach Casino. Photo courtesy of MSC Cruises

Boarding guests enter into a bright, three-deck atrium that’s all curving lines, polished tile, etched glass, and gleaming brass handrails, all centered on a backlit two-deck waterfall and beneath an LED-illuminated ceiling of stars. A pianist performs regularly on a transparent baby grand that sits on a glass platform just above the water, and shops, an Internet center, a card room, a small library, an Internet center, an art gallery, and several bar/lounges cluster around or near the atrium on its various levels. Among the latter are a clubby cigar bar and Cantinella Wine Bar, lit by faux skylights and serving more than 75 wines from all over Italy, with cheeses and meats to match.

Most of Orchestra’s public rooms are located the two upper atrium decks. On level 2 (“Deck Violino” — all Orchestra’s decks are named for musical instruments), the lively Savanna Bar is a sea of leopard print, with Klimpt-esque wall murals depicting African wildlife scenes and little leopard statues serving as light fixtures. It’s the venue for daytime activities/demos and evening music and dancing.

Farther forward and spanning three decks, Theatro Covent Garden is a splashy Vegas-meets-art-deco space with a plethora of glittering wall and ceiling lights. Deck Saxofono offers a large casino and the handsome Shaker Lounge (as in martini shaker), a show lounge that serves, among other things, as the ship’s karaoke bar.

Relax completely in the Body & Mind Spa aboard MSC Orchestra. Photo courtesy of MSC Cruises

Up at the top of the ship is the busy, very disco looking Discoteca R32, while one deck down (and all the way at the other end of the vessel) is the Body & Mind Spa, which offers two ornate Turkish baths (one for men, one for women) and a lovely pre- or post-treatment relaxation room where a row of flowing lounge chairs and three whirlpool tubs face a wall of glass and the open sea. There’s also a juice bar, a smallish gym, and the usual menu of massage, wellness, and beauty treatments.

Kids get the jungle-themed “Jungle Adventure” playroom, outfitted with games, arts and crafts supplies, PlayStations, etc., and offering activities like puppet shows, group games, pizza parties, and acrobatics lessons. Outdoors, there’s a second, enclosed play area with a tube slide and a wading pool.

Up on Deck Mandolino, two Mediterranean-themed pool areas (each with a pool and two Jacuzzi tubs) are divided by a pair of pool bars. The forward pool area (“Area Picine Acapulco”) has a large movie screen. Up top, there’s a jogging track, sports court, miniature golf course, and golf simulator.

Dining On MSC Orchestra

As aboard all MSC ships, dining is mostly traditional, with dinners served in the two fixed-seating main dining rooms: L’Ibiscus, designed with floral themes, and Villa Borghese, designed in dramatic reds and dotted with paintings of Italian scenes. Both serve a combination of Mediterranean and international dishes, and both suffer from low ceilings, which amplifies ambient noise.

For a more intimate alternative, guests can dine at the Shanghai Chinese Restaurant, a beautifully designed space full of lacquered-look furniture, dragon motifs, vases, and Chinese flower prints. It’s priced a la carte.

For casual meals, there’s a buffet restaurant that in the evening also offers a nightly a la carte option in its aft section, as well as extra-cost pizza and kebab. There’s also a standard pool-deck grill outdoors, serving casual meals during the day.

Staterooms & Suites On MSC Orchestra

MSC Orchestra Balcony Suite. Photo courtesy of MSC Cruises

Most of Orchestra’s staterooms are 199-square-foot outside cabins with balconies, each designed in a clean, modern style, with adequate storage, a small sitting area, TV, minifridge, vanity/writing desk, private safe, and a bathroom with shower and minimal toiletries.

Smaller inside and oceanview staterooms are also available, as are 317-square-foot balcony suites, which come with a larger balcony, larger sitting area, king-size bed, more closet space, and a tub in the bathroom.

MSC Cruises Reviews

To read a review of a particular ship, click the link under "Read the Review." If applicable, our Live Voyage Reports offer a day-by-day overview of an actual cruise onboard. In some cases, there may be more than one report, to be sure to see if your favorite destination is represented.
Ship ReviewLive Voyage Report
MSC Armonia
MSC Divina Review• Eastern Caribbean from Miami
MSC Fanstasia
MSC Lirica
MSC Magnifica
MSC Meraviglia
MSC Musica
MSC Opera
MSC Orchestra
MSC Poesia
MSC Preziosa
MSC Seaside
MSC Seaview
MSC Sinfonia
MSC Splendida

One Comment

  • Changing anything after a booking has been made is impossible.
    I tried to get my children’s a cabin closer to ours but it was impossible.
    The call centre people were unhelpful and rude.
    Boarding is a nightmare. Very.very ineffective and delayed by hours. Trying to manage my 3 hungry children in a queue for 3 hours is simply unacceptable. Not recommending the MSC Cruises in South Africa


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