Fincantieri cuts the steel for MSC Seaside in Monfalcone

MSC's next-generation ship MSC Seaside is due to debut in November 2017
Fincantieri cuts the steel for MSC Seaside in Monfalcone
MSC Club members can now book sailings on MSC Meraviglia

By Rebecca Gibson |

Fincantieri has cut the first piece of steel for MSC Cruises’ new Seaside-class ship MSC Seaside at its Monfalcone yard in Italy on 22 June.

MSC Cruises’ executive chairman Pierfrancesco Vago and CEO Gianni Onorato joined Fincantieri’s CEO Giuseppe Bono at the ceremony.

“MSC Seaside will be the biggest ship ever built in our shipyards, as well as the first we have ever constructed for MSC Cruises, whose strength - like ours – lies in being a truly global player in its industry,” said Bono. “In MSC Seaside we have developed a brand new and highly ambitious project, and we look forward to building it. In two years we will celebrate with MSC Cruises a magnificent ship of which we will all be deeply proud.”

Ordered in 2014 as part of MSC’s €5.1 billion expansion plan, MSC Seaside is one of two Seaside-class newbuilds, which will be the biggest cruise ships to have ever been built at Fincantieri’s Monfalcone yard in Italy. MSC also has an option to construct a third ship.

Each of the 154,000gt Seaside-class ships will be able to accommodate up to 4,140 guests at double capacity, the new Seaside ship will be the largest cruise ship ever built by Fincantieri shipyards. Offering 43,500 sqm of public areas, the Seaside ships will have a sea-level promenade that circumnavigates the sides of the ship with outdoor spaces, shops and restaurants. They will also feature a theatre; a terraced balcony; panoramic lifts with sea views; advanced safety systems; and various systems that aim to reduce fuel consumption by 25%. In addition, the ships will have an interactive, multi-storey aqua park with five slides, and an enhanced MSC Yacht Club with private sundeck, lounge and pool.

MSC Seaside will be christened in Miami in December 2017, marking the first time an MSC ship has been officially launched in the US. One of PortMiami’s cruise berths and terminals will be renovated and expanded to accommodate the ship, which will sail year-round Caribbean itineraries.

“We have witnessed the beginning of the work on an extraordinary ship, MSC Seaside,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ executive chairman. “It is a ship that revolutionises industry standards, with a bold design that delivers unparalleled experiences in entertainment, leisure and dining while being a benchmark in eco-friendliness and safety. It is testament to MSC Cruises’ constant focus on excellence and innovation.”

During the steel-cutting ceremony, MSC also revealed that the cabins for the inaugural summer 2017 cruises for its new Vista-class MSC Meraviglia are now on sale to MSC Club members. The voyages will go on general sale on 5 July.

“The opening of sales marks yet another decisive milestone in MSC Cruises’ expansion plan, especially as MSC Meraviglia’s inaugural cruise will take place two years from now,” said Onorato. “MSC Meraviglia is a true maritime marvel and will be one of the greenest and safest ships in the industry, as well as one of the most technologically advanced. We are thrilled to offer MSC Club members the first pick to book their distinctive holiday experience so far in advance and the demand we are seeing for our product translates the eagerness with which MSC Meraviglia is awaited.”

Currently under construction at the STX France in Saint-Nazaire, MSC Meraviglia will accommodate 5,700 guests and feature various innovative onboard features.

The 167,600gt ship is due to be delivered in May 2017 and will be the first MSC vessel to have three homeports: the Italian city of Genoa, the French port of Marseille and Barcelona in Spain. Designed to operate in all seasons, MSC Meraviglia will be able to call at any cruise port in the world.

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