MSC Virtuosa Floated Out
MSC Cruises' MSC Virtuosa has been floated out at Chantiers de l’Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, France.
MSC Virtuosa will be the second Meraviglia-Plus ship after MSC Grandiosa and will now move to a wet dock for further construction and fitting until she is delivered in October 2020. The sixth MSC Cruises ship to enter service since 2017, MSC Virtuosa will be the second ship in the company’s fleet to have a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system and next-generation advanced wastewater treatment system (AWTS).
MSC Virtuosa will also be equipped for shore power, have exhaust gas cleaning systems, ballast water treatment, heat recovery systems and LED lighting. Shore power connection is broadly available across MSC Cruises’ entire fleet and has been standard across all of the company’s new ships since 2017.
MSC Virtuosa’s maiden voyage will be a seven-night six-port Western Mediterranean cruise in November 2020 from Genoa, Italy. After a winter season in the Med, she will be deployed in summer 2021 to Northern Europe with itineraries to the Norwegian fjords and Baltic capital cities.
The float out follows the delivery and christening in Hamburg of MSC Grandiosa and the steel cutting ceremony for MSC Europa, the company’s first of five LNG-powered ships. MSC Cruises has also unveiled a project in conjunction with Chantiers de l’Atlantique named PACBOAT that will focus on the integration of a new fuel cell technology on board MSC Europa.
The company has also announced that from January 1, 2020 it will become the world’s first fully carbon neutral major global cruise line. MSC Cruises will offset all direct carbon dioxide emissions from its fleet marine operations through a blend of regular and blue carbon offset projects.
The third of three Meraviglia-Plus ships, yet to be named, will enter service in 2023 and be powered by LNG. MSC Cruises is investing €5 billion ($5.5 billion) in the construction of five LNG-powered World Class ships with the first, MSC Europa, entering service in May 2022. The World Class ships, like the Meraviglia-Plus prototype, will be built at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint Nazaire, France. MSC Cruises’ contemporary fleet will increase to 25 ships by 2027.