Clamour for glamour: New flagship Meraviglia takes MSC Cruises to a new level

MSC Meraviglia

MSC Cruises’ new flagship Meraviglia has taken the Swiss-based cruise line into a new league of luxury.

At a glittering christening ceremony on Saturday, June 3, 2017, Meraviglia’s Godmother, legendary screen actress Sophia Loren, named the ship that is the biggest ever built by MSC – and at 171,598 tons, Meraviglia is the fourth largest cruise vessel ever built.

Meraviglia means ‘wonder’ and the 5,714-passenger vessel lives up to its name, delivering entertainment and stylish accommodation for families, couples and single passengers.

The most notable design feature of the 19-deck megaship is how easy it is for passengers to find their way around: each public space is well-defined, ensuring no one feels overwhelmed at being on a such a large vessel.

Designer Marco De Jorio and his team have created a streamlined look where 21st century styling embraces echos of Art Deco with a bold blue, burnt orange, red and black palette accentuated by chrome.

The atrium, with curving double staircase and a stage encrusted with Swarovski crystals, adds glamour to the double-height space.

To meet the brief of creating the ship as if it were a city, there is a central parade of shops, 12 restaurants and an English-style pub serving craft and draught beers.

There are 10 choices of cabin and the Yacht Club spans three decks with luxurious private facilities, restaurant, lounge and butler service. Accommodation includes double-height suites, large balconies and whirlpools.

Direct access by lift from the Yacht Club to the Balinese Spa works well, while there is a dedicated family deck with entertainment for three age groups. A funky games arcade area for teenagers doubles as a nightclub and there’s a flight simulator and five-a-side football pitch/basketball court. The chance to build Lego will see the children having to fight off the adults!

Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ executive chairman, said: “We have an ambitious vision and MSC Meraviglia marks the start of a new era for our company.

“The new ships that will come into service over the next 10 years will have the latest cutting-edge technology to create unforgettable holiday experiences at sea for guests of all ages.

“MSC Meraviglia is the first to make this vision come to life, as it sets a new standard for cruise ships as a destination in itself.”

The destination he mentions also includes entertainment from Cirque de Soleil in the purpose-built Carousel Theatre where there will be two shows a night, six days a week.

An 80-metre LED Sky screen dome over the promenade also adds to the entertainment, while MSC for Me is the new digital experience designed for guests to get the most out of their holiday using an app and bracelet.

MSC Meraviglia’s summer itinerary features six embarkation ports in the Western Mediterranean – Genoa, Marseille, Barcelona, Naples, Messina in Sicily and Valetta in Malta.

MSC Meraviglia is the 13th addition to MSC Cruises’ fleet and the first of 11 new MSC Cruises ships due to come into service over the next 10 years.

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