WHY IT RATES: MSC Meraviglia will be the first ship to visit MSC Cruises’ new private island, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, before homeporting in Miami to cruise the Caribbean for the Winter season.—Mia Taylor, TravelPulse Senior Writer.
MSC Meraviglia — MSC Cruises’ first Meraviglia Class smart ship — made her inaugural visit to North American shores today, arriving at Manhattan Pier in New York City.
With a double-occupancy capacity of 4,488 and gross tonnage of 171,598 GRT, MSC Meraviglia is MSC Cruises’ largest ship sailing from the U.S and sets the record for the largest ship to ever port in Manhattan. As she continues sailings along the east coast, MSC Meraviglia will also be the largest ship ever to call Boston, Massachusetts as well as Portland and Bar Harbor, Maine.
“We are so thrilled to welcome MSC Meraviglia, a truly beautiful ship, to the U.S. as she marks another major milestone for MSC Cruises in the North American market,” said Ken Muskat, executive vice president, and chief operating officer of MSC Cruises (USA). “Due to significant demand, for the first time in MSC Cruises history, we now have four distinct ships sailing in the region as MSC Meraviglia joins MSC Seaside, MSC Armonia and MSC Divina. With each ship offering its own unique design and guest experience inspired by our European heritage, we look forward to providing travelers with even more choice and variety to best fit their vacation needs.”
MSC Meraviglia’s On-Board Features
With a name meaning wonder, MSC Meraviglia boasts an innovative and glamorous design that showcases MSC Cruises’ signature European style. The ship’s two-story Mediterranean-style promenade is lined with a variety of shops and specialty restaurants — including HOLA! Tapas Bar and Ocean Cay, restaurants by two Michelin-starred Spanish chef Ramón Freixa, and Jean-Philippe Chocolat & Café, an open-fronted chocolate atelier by world-renowned pastry chef, Jean Philippe Maury.
Entertainment is available around-the-clock with enriching activities for all ages. In addition to six different full-scale theatrical productions every night in the main theater, guests are also able to enjoy two distinct Cirque du Soleil at Sea shows, VIAGGIO and SONOR — created exclusively for MSC Meraviglia in a purpose-built entertainment and dining venue, the Carousel Lounge.
Immersive kids and family programs include a winter-themed aqua park with four water slides, a Himalayan bridge suspending cruisers high up above the ship, an interactive XD cinema, two full-size bowling lanes, and multiple LEGO-designed kids clubs.
Those looking for exclusivity and privacy – while still enjoying all the amenities and choice offered on a larger ship – can book their stay within the MSC Yacht Club, MSC Cruises’ all-inclusive ‘ship-within-a-ship’ concept, featuring private amenities and 24-hour butler service.
Launched in June 2017, MSC Meraviglia was MSC Cruises’ first next-generation innovative ship to feature MSC for Me, a multi-channel digital program designed to help guests get the most out of their vacation. By simply using an app, interactive displays and in-stateroom TV, guests are able to effortlessly book services, find information, plan activities, stay connected with friends and family and easily navigate around the ship.
MSC Meraviglia North American Itineraries and Experiences Ashore
Designed to sail in all seasons and climates, the glamorous MSC Meraviglia will begin her North American journey with three sailing from NYC, including two itineraries to New England and Canada and one repositioning to her new homeport in Miami.
On her first Caribbean sailing, departing from NYC on October 28, MSC Meraviglia will be the first ship to call on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, MSC Cruises’ new breathtaking private island destination in the Bahamas opening November 9, 2019.
With endless sweeping vistas of crystal blue waters and over two miles of pristine beachfront across eight white sandy beaches, Ocean Cay is the ideal getaway for guests to escape their busy daily lives and discover nature’s pure, untouched beauty.
Exclusively for MSC Cruises’ guests, MSC Meraviglia will dock at Ocean Cay from early morning until late evening, giving guests plenty of time to soak up the spirit of The Bahamas and enjoy the day as they wish.
Island experiences span a range of activities including shore excursions designed to discover the marine life close up, such as snorkelling, stand up paddleboarding, and kayaking; luxurious spa treatments; shopping areas with authentic Bahamian arts and crafts by local artisans; and one of a kind night events such as traditional Junkanoo parades, lighthouse light shows, and beachside stargazing.
With MSC Meraviglia’s arrival in North America, she will also now feature MSC Cruises’ partnership with home and lifestyle expert Martha Stewart, which launched earlier in 2019 on all Caribbean sailings.
The exclusive Martha Stewart and MSC Cruises partnership includes celebration surprise gift packages, onboard special holiday dinner menus and recipes, and specially curated shore excursions featuring some of Martha’s favorite activities and allowing guests to learn the local culture of the destination they are visitng.
From November 10, 2019 through April 5, 2020, MSC Meraviglia will sail two different 7-night western Caribbean itineraries visiting ports in Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, Mexico, Belize, Honduras and The Bahamas. Sample itineraries include:
January 12, 2019: Seven-night sailing visiting Ocho Rios, Jamaica; Georgetown, Cayman Islands; Cozumel, Mexico; Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, Bahamas. Prices start at $629 per person for a balcony stateroom.
February 16, 2019: Seven-night sailing visiting Miami, Florida; Isla de Rotan, Honduras; Belize City, Belize; Costa Maya, Mexico; Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, Bahamas; Miami, Florida. Prices start at $639 per person for a balcony stateroom.
Following her inaugural season in Miami, MSC Meraviglia will then return to Northern Europe for summer 2020 (April – October). Upon returning to the U.S. in October 2020, MSC Meraviglia will once again do three 10-night sailings from New York to Canada & New England before then homeporting back in Miami for 7-night Caribbean sailings.
SOURCE: MSC Cruises press release
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