This week has brought several discoveries to the attention of cruise fans, from exciting fleet additions to cruise lines collaborating with famous companies and exciting itinerary additions.
It has just been announced that on the 28th of November, MSC Cruises held a traditional steel cutting ceremony at STX France in Saint Nazaire to mark the official commencement of the construction of MSC Bellissima.
The second of the Meraviglia generation of ships will come into service in 2019 and has been designed to operate in all seasons to call to most of the world’s international cruise ports. MSC Bellissima will be the largest in the line’s fleet, along with Meraviglia, at a gross tonnage of 167,600 GRT and a total capacity for more than 5,700 passengers.
MSC Cruises Executive Chairman, Pierfrancesco Vago, stated: ‘With work nearing completion on MSC Meraviglia, we are delighted to begin construction of MSC Bellissima. I am delighted with this prototype, which will soon become a beautiful and balanced cruise ship capable of operating everywhere in the world’.
Both Bellissima and Meraviglia are part of the MSC Cruise fleet expansion programme worth $5.3 billion that aims to double the line’s capacity by 2022, reaching about 80,000 passengers a day. MSC Bellissima will be the fourth of eleven next-generation ships due to come to service over the ten years that will see MSC’s capacity triple.
STX France Chief Executive Officer, Laurent Castaing, commented: ‘Meraviglia literally means wonder and the four new ships will astonish the public with their elegant and beautiful design. MSC Bellissima is as well named as her sistership.”
In other news, it has been revealed that exclusive ‘BBC Earth Experiences’ will be rolling out fleetwide for Holland America.
The cruise line’s exclusive partnership with BBC Earth means that guests onboard can immerse themselves in high-definition multimedia shows and experiences.
One highlight consists of a ‘Frozen Planet Live’ concert based on the television series where live musicians will play a carefully orchestrated performance on stage as images unfold on the screen. Guests are taken on an emotional journey into the wilderness of the Polar Regions, where life thrives in the most extraordinary conditions.
Holland America Line’s president, Orlando Ashford, stated: ‘Our guests are destination seekers with a desire to learn more when they are cruising with us. ‘BBC Earth Experiences’ bring them to the most remote corners of the world in an incredibly innovative way’.
Guests can also test their knowledge in the entertaining ‘What On Earth!’ family game show that uncovers all that’s weird and wonderful about the natural world. Junior cruisers can get involved too with the BBC Earth’s countdown fact shows where kids will discover amazing facts about animals, dinosaurs and sea creatures.
In 2017, four BBC Earth feature cruises are scheduled for sailing and BBC Earth experts will host master classes and question-and-answer sessions in their field so that guests can learn directly from the show’s creators. Featured guest talent will be announced at a later date.
So, that is today’s news round up! What are your thoughts on the news? Are you excited for another mega MSC ship to join the fleet? Have you sailed with MSC before? Are you impressed with HAL’s collab with the BBC? Are you a Frozen Planet fan? What other collaborations could possibly be next for cruise lines? Leave us your thoughts!
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