“The ship that will be christened in Le Havre in a few months will be coming here and will be staying here year-round,” said Roberto Fusaro, president of MSC North America.
MSC executive chairman Pierfrancesco Vago said in January that one of the line’s Meraviglia-class ships would be positioned in Miami for the 2019-20 winter season but hadn’t said which one.
The MSC Meraviglia is the first in a class that will include two more ships, plus a lengthened version. It will have Cirque du Soleil shows in a customized $20 million theater and will also be the first MSC ship to feature MSC for Me, the digital concierge MSC recently announced. MSC Meraviglia is scheduled to launch in June with cruises in Europe.
The MSC Meraviglia will have four water slides.
MSC currently sails the MSC Divina year-round from Miami and is scheduled to employ the new MSC Seaside from Miami starting in November 2017. Fusaro said the plan after the winter season in 2018-19 is to send the MSC Divina back to Europe for the summer, while keeping the MSC Seaside and MSC Meraviglia in Miami year-round.
At a news conference at the Seatrade Cruise Global conference, MSC Cruises president Gianni Onorato reiterated the line’s pledge to use travel agents and said it plans to continue paying commission on such things as spa treatments, shore excursions and air as it grows capacity in North America. “We have a commitment to be the easiest company to do business with and the most profitable for our trading partners,” Onorato said.
This article has been updated to reflect that the the MSC Meraviglia will be coming to Miami for the winter 2019-20 winter season, not the 2018-19 season as it previously stated.