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MSC Preziosa Cruise Photos

From: MSC Preziosa cruise review: North Sea

Day 1: Departure, Sea Day

BELOW: Our scheduled departure time from Rotterdam was 7:00 a.m., and we woke to the sound of the ship's engines.

By the time Durant had thrown on a bathrobe and stepped onto our balcony to take pictures, MSC Preziosa was already chugging past two of the harbor's landmarks, the Euromast TV tower and the STC skyscraper.

Rotterdam Euromast from MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: MSC Preziosa continued up the River Nieuwe Maas, passing freighters, ferries, and other commercial vessels. (Rotterdam is Europe's largest port, so there was plenty of activity to see.)

Ship in Rotterdam Harbor

RoRo vessel in port of Rotterdam


BELOW: Port facilities of every kind dotted the banks of the River Nieuwe Maas. Here, you can see container-handling systems (on the far left), a drilling platform, and a Port of Rotterdam tugboat.

Drilling platform and tugboat on River Nieuwe Mass, Rotterdam


BELOW: By 8:10 a.m., we were approaching the North Sea. Wind farms lined the river on both sides.

Wind farm near Rotterdam


BELOW: Soon, we had a bridgecam view of the North Sea from our cabin's TV.

Bowcam view from MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Because our itinerary allowed passengers to embark or disembark at every port, the ship had daily safety drills for new arrivals. We were required to attend a drill in the Platinum Theater at 8:30 a.m., before we'd had breakfast.

Safety drill on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: After the drill, we headed for a late breakfast in the Inca Buffet, which is open 20 hours a day.

Breakfast pastries in Inca Buffet, MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: The Inca Buffet (and the Maya Buffet, just behind it) offered plenty of food choices. We would have been delighted with our breakfast if it hadn't been so hard to find a table.

Breakfast cereals on MSC PREZIOSA

Breakfast rolls in MSC PREZIOSA buffet


BELOW: With breakfast out of the way, we went onto the open deck to enjoy views of the North Sea--including containerships and oil platforms.

Hamburg Süd containership on North Sea

Yang Ming containership on North Sea

Oil platform on North Sea


BELOW: We passed one small ship, Unifeeder's Spica J, at a close distance. Overtaking the vessel took more than half an hour.

Unifeeder containership on North Sea


BELOW: It was a chilly day on the North Sea (despite being early in September), so we saw relatively few passengers as we wandered around the upper decks. The enormous water slide was shut down, presumably because of the cool weather.

Water slide on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: A few brave souls attended an outdoor exercise class in the Acqua Park on Deck 14.

Deck 15 exercise class


BELOW: A short distance away, the ship's indoor pool and hot tubs were busy. The atrium-like setting has a tropical theme and is named "La Playa Preciosa."

Indoor pool on MSC PREZIOSA

La Playa Preciosa pool on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: When we walked down to Deck 7, a.k.a. "Rubino" or the Boat Deck, we encountered closed doors and a "wind warning" sign. (We were able to get onto the exposed deck via another set of doors.)

"Wind Warning" sign on Deck 7, MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: The open-air Boat Deck was practically empty, except for the occasional smoker or lifeboat aficionado.

Cheryl Imboden with MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: We were pleased to see that life preservers were dotted along the spotlessly clean deck.

Life preserver on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: It's worth noting that, although part of Deck 7 is designated the "Promenade Deck" on the ship's official deck plan, it isn't a full oval like the promenade decks of traditional ocean liners (or even traditional cruise ships such as Holland America Line's MS Rotterdam, which we'd cruised on a number of years earlier.)

 If you want to walk around in ovals without cutting through the ship's interior spaces, you can go up to the "Power Walking Track" on Deck 15.

Deck 7, Ribino or Boat Decuk, on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: While walking on Deck 7, we could look up and see the stacked cabin balconies of Decks 8 through 12.

Cabin balconies on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Our vews from Deck 7 were somewhat limited by lifeboats and tenders, but there were plenty of gaps.

Tenders and lifeboats on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Some of the best views were aft, away from the boats.

Deck 7 of MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: If we'd been disoriented in a crisis, we could have followed this sign to the water.

Ladder to water sign on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Would you want to be assigned to Lifeboat 13?

Lifeboat 13 sign on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Feeling unlucky (after seeing the Lifeboat 13 sign), we went back inside and walked through the Casino without stopping.

Casino on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: We didn't even ask to join the DIY low-stakes game that we saw a couple playing in an otherwise empty lounge.

Couple playing cards on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Nor did we pause in the photo shop, where the walls were lined with pictures of happy couples and families.

Photo shop on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: Instead, we headed for the Library Corner, which proved to be just that: a corner. (The days of the traditional ship's library appeared to be numbered, at least on MSC's megaships.)

Library Corner on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: In contrast to the Library Corner and the Casino, the Bowling Alley was doing a decent business.

Bowling alley on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: The shops weren't too crowded, so we browsed the selection of Lego and logo toys (including a Barbie-inspired "MSC Captain Doll" with uniform and accessories).

Lego ship model of MSC PREZIOSA

MSC ship captain doll on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: At suppertime, we dined at our assigned table in the Golden Lobster restaurant.

MSC Preziosa has open seating in the dining rooms at breakfast and lunch, but tables are assigned at the 6:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. dinner sittings. Since we were American, we were assigned to a table with two English-speaking couples.

Golden Lobster restaurant on MSC PREZIOSA


BELOW: After dinner, we attended the presentation of the crew in the Platinum Theater.

Crew introduction on MSC PREZIOSA

Next page: Hamburg


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MSC Preziosa day-by-day photo diary:
Embarkation in Rotterdam
Departure, Sea Day 1
Hamburg
Sea Day 2
Le Havre
Southampton
Zeebrugge
Arrival in Rotterdam

Also see:
MSC Preziosa cruise review: North Sea