MSC Cuises has celebrated two major milestones today. The Italian cruise line has officially taken ownership of MSC Grandiosa and cut the first steel for MSC Europa, the first LNG-powered World Class ship.
Chantiers de l’Atlantique, one of the world leaders in cruise ship construction, has officially handed MSC Grandiosa over to MSC Cruises. The delivery ceremony of MSC Cruises’ newest flagship took place in the presence of Gianluigi Aponte, MSC Group Chairman.
Earlier in the morning a second important milestone event took place with the traditional cutting of the first steel and naming of the first World Class ship, MSC Europa, by MSC Cruises’ Executive Chairman, Pierfrancesco Vago. MSC Europa is the first of five liquified natural gas (LNG)-powered cruise ships on order and the first LNG ship to be built in France. The two events marked another important step forward in MSC Cruises’ long-term commitment to environmental stewardship both at sea as well as ashore.
In conjunction with the cutting of the first steel ceremony of MSC Europa, MSC Cruises and Chantiers de l’Atlantique also unveiled a groundbreaking R&D project named PACBOAT that focuses on the integration of a new fuel cell technology demonstrator onboard the LNG-powered MSC Cruises ship. This demonstrator will produce electricity and heat using LNG.
MSC Grandiosa is the first of three Meraviglia-Plus ships to join MSC Cruises’ fleet to be followed in 2020 by MSC Virtuosa and the LNG-powered World Class MSC Europa in 2022. It is MSC Cruises’ fifth new ship to enter into service in the past 30 months and is part of the Company’s plan to build a total of 13 highly-innovative and environmentally-sound cruise ships between 2017 and 2027, plus an additional four to operate under a yet-to-be named luxury cruise brand.
World Class is the sixth new prototype developed by MSC Cruises. The ships will be characterised by their revolutionary architecture, environmental performance and energy-efficient design, including a straight bow to improve further the stability of the ship and provide even greater guest comfort.