MSC Virtuosa is a Meraviglia-Plus class cruise ship currently under construction for MSC Cruises at the Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France. She will become the second Meraviglia Plus-class ship for the cruise line and will be the sister ship to MSC's current flagship, MSC Grandiosa. She is scheduled to debut on 8 November 2020.
|Ordered:||1 February 2016|
|Laid down:||27 February 2019|
|Launched:||29 November 2019|
|In service:||8 November 2020|
|Class and type:||Meraviglia Plus-class cruise ship|
|Length:||331.43 m (1,087.4 ft)|
|Beam:||43 m (141 ft)|
|Height:||65 m (213 ft)|
|Speed:||22.3 kn (41.3 km/h; 25.7 mph)|
Planning and construction
On 1 February 2016, MSC Cruises announced that they had converted their options for two new ships into firm orders, with the new vessels being a part of a sub-class that evolves from the cruise line's original Meraviglia-class platform, dubbed "Meraviglia Plus". Each new vessel was designed to be larger than their older Meraviglia-class sisters, at 181,541 GT, with a maximum passenger capacity of 6,334 guests.
On 14 June 2018, MSC Cruises celebrated the steel-cutting for the second Meraviglia Plus-class vessel and also announced her name as MSC Virtuosa at the Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard. Her coin ceremony was performed on 27 February 2019. She was floated out on 29 November 2019 and moved to a wet dock to complete construction.
Design and engineering
Like MSC Grandiosa, MSC Virtuosa will be equipped with a selective catalytic reduction system that helps to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by 80 percent, along with a closed-loop exhaust gas cleaning system that reduces ship sulfur emissions by 97 percent. She will also be capable of running on shorepower when docked at ports.
MSC Virtuosa is scheduled to debut on 8 November 2020 on her maiden voyage, which is planned to commence from Genoa. During her inaugural season, she will cruise 7-day itineraries in the Western Mediterranean, visiting ports in Italy, Spain, and France. In summer 2021, she will begin cruising in Northern Europe and the Baltic region, before re-positioning to Dubai where she will be based throughout the winter, sailing 7-day itineraries in the Persian Gulf to the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman.
- Stieghorst, Tom (1 February 2016). "MSC confirms $1.7B order for Meraviglia Plus ships: Travel Weekly". www.travelweekly.com.
- Gibson, Rebecca (2 February 2016). "MSC Cruises orders two Meraviglia-Plus ships from STX France". CruiseandFerry.net. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
- Groizeleau, Vincent (30 January 2019). "Saint-Nazaire: Nouvelle mise sur cale en vue". Mer et Marine (in French). Retrieved 30 November 2019.
- Staff, C. I. N. (27 February 2019). "Coin Ceremony Held for MSC Virtuosa". www.cruiseindustrynews.com. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
- "MSC VIRTUOSA'S FLOAT OUT CAPS MONTH-LONG TRIPLE CELEBRATIONS FOR MSC CRUISES". MSC Press Area. 2 December 2019. Retrieved 2 December 2019.
- "SALES OPEN FOR MSC VIRTUOSA, THE HIGHLY ANTICIPATED FOURTH MERAVIGLIA GENERATION SHIP". MSC Cruises. 19 November 2018. Retrieved 29 November 2019.
- "First Steel Cut for MSC Cruises' Meraviglia-Plus II". World Maritime News. 14 June 2018.
- Staff, C. I. N. (31 July 2019). "New Video Tour Highlights MSC Grandiosa". www.cruiseindustrynews.com. Retrieved 13 September 2019.
- "MSC Cruises reveals name of first Meraviglia-Plus ship, lays keel for Bellissima". Seatrade Cruise News. 15 November 2017. Retrieved 13 September 2019.
- "#MSCVirtuosa touched water for the first time this past Friday evening, as we celebrated her float out in Saint Nazaire, France". Twitter. 2 December 2019.
- Ebelthite, Shaun (11 December 2019). "MSC Cruises to homeport new Meraviglia Plus-class MSC Virtuosa in Dubai for 2021/22 season". cruisearabiaonline.com. Retrieved 11 December 2019.