While the launch of a new cruise ship is always a big deal, the introduction of MSC Meraviglia, announced as the eighth wonder of the world, was a huge deal. Not only for MSC Cruises, who launched their first new ship in 4 years, but also for us as this was the first time we were invited to an event this exciting.
Prior to the official christening ceremony of MSC Meraviglia we were invited by MSC Cruises to enjoy two days onboard their new flagship and discover what sets their ship for all seasons apart from the others and makes it the eighth wonder of the world.
Setting foot onboard MSC Meraviglia we were greeted by a vast amount of open space in the three stories high Infinity Atrium and drawn towards the glittering Swarovski crystal staircases that lead up to the Champagne Bar and the Galleria Meraviglia.
Having sipped from our first glass of Veuve Clicquot Rosé, we met up with the executive producer and creative director for Sonor and Viaggio the two shows that were specially created by Cirque du Soleil for MSC Meraviglia.
Having learned all about the magical secrets behind Cirque du Soleil at Sea it was time to discover that other, and much talked about, piece of magic onboard Meraviglia.
Considered the heart of Meraviglia, the nearly 100 meter long, two story high Galleria Meraviglia offers everything from high end shopping to fine dining and locally crafted chocolate.
So far nothing extraordinary, but what sets the Galleria Meraviglia apart from promenades on other cruise ships is the amazing 80 meter long LED sky.
Strolling under Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling, taking a dive in a tropical underwater world, or having our day brightened by the light from a stained glass Tiffany lamp, the largest LED dome at sea left us speechless.
While all roads lead to Rome, the elevators onboard Meraviglia lead to the wonders of the world (and elevator selfies).
Located on deck 14, the Angkorwat Deck, named after the world famous temple complex in cambodia, our balcony stateroom was one of the 2,244 cabins onboard.
When we entered our Wellness stateroom we were greated by a soothing burgundy-red colourscheme combined with a darkbrown deskspace/vanity area and wardrobe and that unmistakable new car, or in this case new cruise ship, smell.
Our room came with all the amenities you would expect (mini-bar, hairdryer, flatscreen TV, climate control) and complimentary bath products (shower gel, shampoo and soap but no washcloths or body lotion). Though we love that MSC has included a USB port next to the power outlets, we wonder why they only added one and didn’t for example add one in the bedside reading lights.
Walking through the corridors we had noticed most staterooms had their luggage delivered, so after our little tour of the cabin we rushed down to guest relations to find out what had happened to ours and inform about the wristbands that were supposed to be in our cabin.
And as luck would have it, or as we would say in Dutch “als bij wonder”, upon returning to our stateroom our cabin attendant arrived with our luggage.
20 minutes later we were all dressed up and ready for the welcome aboard reception followed by dinner in the l’Olivo d’oro Restaurant.
After a wonderful dinner it was time to try our luck in the Casino Imperiale and join the rest of the party.
To be continued…