4 February 2021
MSC Cruises announced today that it is working closely with the Greek Ministry of Tourism and other relevant authorities for the reopening of local tourist services in time to serve cruise passengers visiting Greece starting with the upcoming Easter holiday period.
The Company also announced that it is cancelling all of MSC Magnifica’s scheduled cruises through to 29 April. The ship was originally scheduled to return to sea starting on 14 February with a Greece-bound itinerary. MSC Magnifica will be replaced for voyages to the Eastern Mediterranean, including Greece, during the Easter period and throughout the summer season.
Guests booked on MSC Magnifica through to 29 April will be offered the option to rebook their MSC Cruises holiday at sea on one of the line’s other ships due to call Greece or on its flagship MSC Grandiosa, which is currently at sea in the Western Mediterranean. Alternatively, guests will receive compensation relevant to the country where the booking was made.
MSC Grandiosa is currently operating weekly cruises leaving every Sunday from Genoa, Italy and calling Civitavecchia, Naples, Palermo/Cagliari in Italy as well as Valetta in Malta. Embarkation is available from each port in Italy.
1 February 2021
MSC Cruises today took delivery of MSC Virtuosa, the latest highly-innovative, environmentally-conscious ship to join its fleet.
As tradition calls, a small and private flag ceremony was held at Chantiers de l’Atlantique in Saint Nazaire, France between the shipyard and MSC Cruises where MSC Virtuosa received her official flag and blessings for good fortune. The ceremony was attended in person by the Company’s Executive Chairman Pierfrancesco Vago, his wife Alexa Aponte-Vago and their children as well as representatives from MSC Cruises’ new builds team along with executives and workers from the shipyard.
Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman said: “My family and I could not miss this opportunity to welcome in person the newest member to our fleet. The delivery of MSC Virtuosa at such a challenging time for our industry symbolises how as a family company we continue to look at the longer term and build our future.
“In doing so we remain committed to building each time some of the most innovative ships in the world when it comes to their environmental performance featuring nothing but the most advanced available technology at sea. Just as importantly, with each new ship we continue to push boundaries and innovate our product offering with new and unique experiences for our guests.
“On MSC Virtuosa, this includes the world’s first humanoid bartender at sea that will be the star of a futuristic, immersive experience using cutting-edge technologies. Our exceptional dining offering has been further enhanced with two new restaurant concepts that showcase popular international cuisines to take guests on a gastronomic journey of discovery.
“This is, of course, in addition to the richness of experience that already sets us apart, such as the grand-scale nightly theatrical shows, the award-winning family offering, industry-leading guest technology, of course the now iconic promenade with a stunning 91.8 metre long LED sky dome that is the social heart of the ship and more.”
Laurent Castaing, General Manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique, added: “I am proud of what our teams have accomplished together, despite a difficult sanitary context. With the construction of MSC Virtuosa, we have reached a level of finish and performance that will give future MSC Virtuosa guests the best that cruising has to offer. The sixteenth ship that the Chantiers de l’Atlantique has built for MSC Cruises is therefore an example that will be difficult to overtake!”
When it comes to the environment, MSC Virtuosa features some of the most advanced technology currently available, including: hybrid exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) and cutting-edge selective catalytic reduction systems (SCR); wastewater treatment systems in line with the International Maritime Organization’s MEPC 227(64) Resolution; shore-to-ship power connectivity; as well as, underwater radiated noise management system, with hull and engine room designs that minimise acoustic sound impact, reducing their potential effects on marine fauna, amongst other.
She has also received 11 Golden Pearls from Bureau Veritas for her range of innovative aspects including environmental protection and health and safety. MSC Virtuosa is, in fact, the first cruise ship in the world to receive a BIORISK notation from Bureau Veritas in recognition of her ability to mitigate and manage infectious disease risk for passengers.
Pierfrancesco Vago concluded, “Our long-term goal is to achieve a zero-impact cruise operation and this is the journey we are on today. MSC Virtuosa represents another important step in this direction together with our other investments in the accelerated development of next-generation environmental technology. It also confirms our long-term firm commitment to achieving this ambitious goal.”
The Company’s new flagship MSC Virtuosa will come into service for the summer season from 16 April, with four cruises in the Mediterranean of 3-,-4- and 10-nights before the ship moves to her new homeport of Kiel, Germany where she will commence her Northern Europe itineraries from 8 May.
The Meraviglia generation ships to which ships like MSC Virtuosa belong are characterised by an iconic 101-metre-long promenade with a stunning LED sky dome as the social heart of the ship. The two-deck space is lined with boutiques, restaurants and bars, and in the evening it comes alive with music, entertainment and more.
MSC Virtuosa is the sister ship of MSC Grandiosa, the first vessel of any major cruise line to return to the seas last summer successfully hosting to-date nearly 40,000 guests under the protection of MSC Cruises’ industry-leading health & safety protocol currently performing 7-night itineraries in the Western Mediterranean.
2021 will see the launch of two new MSC Cruises next-generation ships – the second one being MSC Seashore – bringing the fleet total to 19, with a further four to be launched by 2025.
MSC Virtuosa and MSC Seashore, which will come into service in August 2021 and sail the Mediterranean before heading to Miami to sail the Caribbean in November 2021, will offer the very latest in environmental technology, cutting-edge guest technology and a whole range of new experiences and features.
Every ship that MSC Cruises builds is different from the last, and these ships are no exception as these ships represent a further evolution of their original prototype, allowing for more public areas, more cabins, new bars and restaurants and more.