MSC Cruises introduces a new dining concept

Coinciding with the debut of MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside, MSC Cruises is introducing new and highly flexible dining options and a choice of dining packages offering guests the choice to dine as they want, when they want and where they want.

Already offering guests the possibility to personalize each stateroom category by adding different experiences, MSC Cruises has revealed new and highly-innovative dining concepts that will allow guest to personalize their cruise experience even further and create the perfect MSC cruise.  MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside, the first two of a total of 11 new mega-ships, due to come into service in June and December, will introduce new flexible dining options and a choice of dining packages that can be booked at any time prior to embarkation or whilst on board.

“At MSC Cruises, we strive to create memorable holiday experiences for our guests whilst they are on board one of our cruise ships. And dining is and has always been a key feature of our offering,” MSC Cruises’ Head of Product Development and Guest Experience, Andrea Gangale, commented.

He continued: “We are driving innovation in cruising at many levels, now also in the onboard dining experience. The new dining concepts are being introduced to cater to the needs of today’s cruise guests, who are looking for flexibility and choices. Starting with MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside, we are introducing new ways for guests to manage their choices – through cutting-edge onboard technology – and offering an even greater selection of international restaurants to deliver culinary experiences from around the world, all of this so that guests can enjoy their holiday even more.”

New dining styles

The Classic dining experience will still be available, with a choice of two sittings each evening. The traditional dining style is popular with guests who prefer a dedicated table each night so that they can enjoy personalised service from the same waiter who will know them by name, know their dining preferences and how to accommodate them.

One of the new dining concepts that MSC Cruises is introducing is Flexi Dining. Guests who have booked the Fantastica Experience can choose between Flexi and Classic dining allowing them to adapt the dining experience around their plans for each day by pre-selecting a time slot for their evening meal.

Guests who booked the Aurea and Wellness Experience will benefit from My Choice Dining, a freely selectable dining time with no reservation required. In addition to this, MSC Yacht Club guests will also benefit from free-time dining in the dedicated MSC Yacht Club restaurant, with the option of reserving a table in advance.

Casual dining venues are available for all guests 20 hours-a-day, offering a wide range of freshly prepared dishes. The MSC Cruises buffet has been further enhanced with a wide range of different international food experiences with dishes to tempt everyone’s tastes. MSC Seaside, in particular, will feature two casual dining venues, one of which will be dedicated to families, serving family-friendly options and featuring child-friendly seatings.

More international speciality restaurants

The speciality restaurants onboard MSC Cruises’ ships give guests the opportunity to experience an ever-growing range of cuisines from around the world even while at sea.

Following the trend in restaurant design that makes dining a true sensorial experience and that allows guests to see, smell and hear expert chefs at work, MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside will feature restaurants with an innovative ‘open kitchen’ design.

Selected restaurants on MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside will also feature a Chef’s Table, a dining concept designed for those seeking a true gastronomic experience.

Following the success and popularity of the Kaito Sushi Bar hailed as “The Best Sushi at Sea”, serving fresh fish, sashimi and tempura, MSC Cruises will introduce a brand new Kaito Teppanyaki restaurant on board MSC Meraviglia to complement the ship’s Kaito Sushi Bar

Another new restaurant concept will be the Butcher’s Cut, an authentic American Steakhouse, celebrating the craft heritage of America blended with the skilful mastery of the butcher. Guests select their favourite steak from glass-fronted meat ageing fridges and then watch the skilled chefs prepare their flavoursome fresh dishes in the open kitchen. While the cocktails will be inspired by American heritage, guests can also savour some of the best craft beers. A bold wine list will complement the dishes and feature an appealing selection from the New World.

A highlight of the dining on MSC Seaside will be the Asian Market Kitchen by Roy Yamaguchi. The three distinct restaurants created by the innovative Japanese-American chef will consist of an à la carte restaurant serving gourmet Asian creations, a Sushi Bar and a Teppanyaki Grill.

MSC Seaside will also feature signature seafood restaurant, Ocean Cay. This stylish restaurant will serve American-style fish dishes with a Mediterranean twist. Signature dishes will include locally-sourced Stone Crabs, a delicacy in the homeport of Miami, fresh Sea Bass, flown in from the Mediterranean and homemade spaghetti alle vongole (with clams).

More collaborations with renowned chefs

The collaboration with world-renowned chef Roy Yamaguchi on MSC Seaside extends way beyond the creation of the menus. As part of the partnership, Chef Yamaguchi will be personally involved in conceptualising and designing the new pan-Asian restaurant, bringing his creative flair and vision to every single detail of the guest’s experience. This includes everything from creating the recipes, menus, selecting chinaware to enhance the dishes, music selection to create the right ambience all the way through to the wine pairings to complement the food and even the choice of the paper stock for the menus.

On board MSC Meraviglia the long-standing partnership with two-star Michelin chef Carlo Cracco will now encompass the development of signature dishes for the main restaurant as well as for the Christmas and New Year menus.

Meanwhile a partnership with French chocolatier and pastry chef Jean-Philippe Maury will tempt guests on board MSC Meraviglia with incredible sweet creations. Jean-Philippe Chocolat & Café will feature an open chocolate atelier whilst Jean-Philippe Crêpes & Gelato serve tasty treats that can be savoured while enjoying a walk on the ship’s Mediterranean-style promenade.

The chef collaborations extend beyond the new ships as part of MSC Cruises’ focus on international fine dining. MSC Cruises is for example collaborating with international Chinese chef, Jereme Leung. Globally recognised for his contemporary interpretation of Chinese cuisine, Chef Leung’s modern approach has long caught the attention of top international restaurant critics and he has brought his contemporary Chinese cuisine to MSC Lirica. Chef Leung collaborated with MSC Cruises to design new and innovative dining concepts tailored to the tastes of Chinese guests, an exclusive range of signature dishes as well as enhancing existing menus with his creative and distinctive flair.

New dining packages for all tastes

To help guests better plan their onboard dining experiences and make the most of their time on board, MSC Cruises is also introducing a range of dining packages that can be booked prior to the cruise.

MSC Cruises guests on board MSC Meraviglia will be able to book a Dinner & Show Package where they will enjoy an exclusive table d’hôte menu and then experience the breathtaking Cirque du Soleil at Sea performance in the impressive purpose-built Carousel Lounge.

A special dining package is available for the Eataly Chef’s Table on board MSC Meraviglia, which includes a dedicated chef and sommelier for the night, seven gourmet dishes cooked to perfection and all perfectly matched with seven wines creating a food lover’s dream.

For those who want to explore each of the speciality restaurants, a Specialty Dining Package, aloowing guests to benefit from a discount on the onboard prices, will be introduced.

Pictures Courtesy of MSC Cruises

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