A few days ago we found out MSC would be taking over the cruising world in the space of just eight hours with three new ships on the go!
We’re live from St Nazaire where three major events have taken place today; MSC Meraviglia Plus II steel cutting and name announcement, MSC Bellissima float out ceremony, and MSC Grandiosa coin ceremony.
It is the first time in Saint-Nazaire’s history that three cruise ships belonging to a single cruise line are under simultaneous construction at the shipyard!
Take a look at the exclusive glimpse we got from the iconic day, including the newly-announced name of MSC Meraviglia Plus II and one more big surprise announcement…
MSC Meraviglia Plus II Steel-Cutting & Name Announcement
We can confirm that the second in the line’s Meraviglia Plus class has officially been named MSC Virtuosa!
The only other details we know of Virtuosa so far is her capacity for 6,297 passengers and her gross Tonnage of 177,100-we were live for the official steel cutting in St Nazaire…
MSC Bellissima Float Out
MSC Bellissima is due to arrive in 2019 as MSC Meraviglia’s sister ship at 4,500-passenger capacity and 171,598 tonnes.
The line celebrated the float-out of the ship with the french minister for economics unveiling Bellissima to the crowd…
Antonio Paradiso, managing director of UK and Ireland, stated at the event: “This is a particularly pertinent moment for the UK and Ireland, as it marks another step closer to MSC Bellissima’s christening in Southampton on March 2nd 2019.
In less than nine months, she will become the new flagship in MSC Cruises’ ever-growing fleet, as well as the largest ship ever to be christened in the UK.
We are delighted that she will depart for her inaugural sailing from the UK and hope that many other UK and Irish guests enjoy her first season in the Western Mediterranean.”
We were lucky enough to be live from St Nazaire to give you a glimpse at the ship in Bellissima under construction…
Take a look below at MSC Meraviglia to get an idea of what MSC Bellissima will look like when she launches in 2019!…
MSC Grandiosa Coin Ceremony
We can expect the launch of MSC Grandiosa in November 2019 with a passenger capacity of 6,334, gross tonnage of 181,000 tonnes and 2,440 cabins.
This ship will have all the same stats as MSC Virtuosa, the second ship in the Meraviglia Plus class due to launch in 2020.
And in a surprise announcement made yesterday, MSC revealed confirmation of the order of a fifth Meraviglia class ship!
Speaking before opening the valves to flood the dry dock where MSC Bellissima is being built, Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ executive chairman, said: “With the announcement of yet another new vessel, the 13th under our 10-year investment plan, we are affirming our commitment to sustainable growth for our company.
I say this while three more next-generation MSC cruises are now simultaneously under construction. Our fifth Meraviglia-class cruise ship will bring a new generation of cutting-edge environmental technology to the market, benefiting from a new generation of LNG-powered engines.
This will help us further reduce our environmental footprint and advance in our journey of constant improvement.
She will be joined at sea by up to four World Class LNG-powered ships as part of our overall commitment to environmental stewardship through this and other next-generation technologies and solutions deployed fleetwide.”
What do you think of MSC’s takeover the cruising world yesterday? Are you pleased to hear of a fifth ship for the Meraviglia class? Which ship are you most excited for? Leave us your comments!
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