MSC Grandiosa, MSC Cruises’ flagship, departed last night from the port of Genoa in Italy to resume as planned regular 7-night cruises in the Mediterranean after a short pause of operations during the holiday period. The ship had temporarily suspended her sailing as a result of the Italian decree that restricted movement within the country.
MSC Grandiosa first welcomed guests back on board in August 2020 and feedback from the more than 30,000 guests who have sailed so far on board has been extremely positive, so much so that some guests have been choosing to extend their stay on board by one or more weeks. The cruise line’s health and safety protocol helped to set the standard for the industry, making taking a cruise on an MSC Cruises ship one of the safest ways to take a holiday.
MSC Cruises’ protocol, which is unique in the hospitality industry and has been approved by national authorities in Italy, Greece and Malta, is being used as the basis to inform and support plans to restart cruising in other parts of the world. Prior to embarkation, all guests pass through a series of health checks, including COVID-19 testing for all guests and crew, as part of MSC Cruises comprehensive health and safety protocol, devised by the company with the support of international experts and approved by the relevant authorities in the countries visited by MSC Cruises ships currently or due to be at sea. The health and safety measures also include a dedicated response plan that can be activated in collaboration with the authorities.
MSC Cruises’ health and safety protocol has been designed to respond to the situation ashore even while it evolves and since November last year, some of the measures were enhanced including the introduction of mid-cruise testing for guests and weekly testing for crew as well as further enhanced hygiene and sanitation measures and the. Everyone on board observes social distancing as well as wearing masks in public areas, and the guest technology has been leveraged to facilitate onboard contact tracing. To preserve a safe bubble on board the ship, guests only go ashore as part of protected shore excursions so that guests can be protected even while ashore by measures similar to those on board.
The company’s flagship, MSC Grandiosa, launched in November 2019 and offers a wide range of experiences for guests. The iconic Mediterranean-style interior promenade is the social hub of the ship, topped by an LED sky screen that changes scenery at every hour of the day and night. Guests can enjoy a wide range of international dining, including five specialty restaurants and for those looking for a more exclusive experience, the MSC Yacht Club – the ship within a ship concept offers a range of private facilities including a private pool, lounge and restaurant as well as 24-hour a day butler service. Whilst on board, guests can relax with total peace of mind and safely enjoy a range of different activities on board, all adapted to meet the current health and safety measures, whilst still allowing to guests to have an memorable and rich experience.