MSC Meraviglia is the second 5,000-passanger liner that Steinwerder has hosted (Image: Peter Glaubitt)
Germany’s port of Hamburg has hosted two record turnaround days for MSC Cruises’ MSC Meraviglia this August.
MSC Meraviglia first berthed at the port’s Steinwerder Cruise Centre on 29 July and disembarked 5,085 guests. When the ship returned on 9 August, a similar number of passengers then boarded the ship to set off on a 10-day cruise, along with 400 tonnes of food and beverages. This is the highest number of cruise guests the port has hosted from one ship call.
“Together with MSC Cruises and their representative, the port agent, we have taken the necessary steps to ensure that we can handle that many passengers,” said Sacha Rougier, managing director of Cruise Gate Hamburg (CGH), which operates the Steinwerder, Altona and HafenCity terminals. “Steinwerder Cruise Centre has been designed to accommodate large, state-of-the-art cruise ships and its location on the south shore of the River Elbe outside of the city centre is perfect from a nautical and transport point of view. We are very happy to see the MSC Meraviglia depart from Hamburg 14 times in this season. With MSC as a major customer for Hamburg, the city has gained an international importance as a cruise port.”
MSC Meraviglia will be based in Hamburg until the end of September.
“MSC Meraviglia, our flagship in Hamburg in the current summer season, sails from Steinwerder on voyages to Great Britain and Ireland or Iceland and Norway’s fjords all the way to Spitsbergen,” said Michael Zengerle, managing director of MSC Cruises in Germany. “Our German guests in particular appreciate the international, elegant Mediterranean ambience and enjoy the top-class entertainment, ‘Cirque du Soleil at Sea’, culinary and family services offered aboard our ships. All this, of course, includes a relaxed start to the holiday without long queues at baggage drop-offs, check-in points and security as well as convenient parking directly at the terminal. Ground teams and onboard staff work hand in hand to ensure utmost customer satisfaction.”
One hundred CGH staff worked to get MSC Meraviglia ready at the terminal. To ensure an efficient turnaround, the process involved staff of the shipping company’s port agent and handling services provider, as well as linesmen, the water police, customs and security firms, and ship broker PWL Port Services.
“Managing a turnaround of passengers and baggage and stocking the ship is different from dealing with a ship stopping by for a day so that guests visit the city as part of their cruise package,” said Alexander Napp, managing director of PWL Port Services. “A fine-tuned orchestration of all the different operations is needed for efficient turnaround services. That’s what we provide, and we have been doing so since the MSC Meraviglia first called at the port of Hamburg in April 2018.”
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