MSC Cruises christened MSC Grandiosa, its newest, most environmentally-advanced flagship, in the city of Hamburg, Germany on November 9, during the fourth and final night of celebrations in the Blue Port. Marking cruise line's largest and longest christening event ever, the launch of MSC Grandiosa's was part of a series of celebrations over 27 days, 8 countries and 11 ports. Following the Christening, MSC Grandiosa embarked on a grand tour, visiting Southampton, UK; Lisbon, Portugal; Barcelona, Spain; Marseille, France and Genoa, Italy. Then, MSC Grandiosa will commence her usual 7-night cruises starting November 23.
It's an extraordinary welcome for an extraordinary ship. Designed to ensure even cleaner air emissions and improved overall environmental performance both at sea and ashore, MSC Grandiosa is equipped with advanced cutting-edge technologies and sets a new standard for sustainability at sea.
On board, guests of all ages and interests will find something exciting waiting, including:
- Two original new shows from Cirque du Soleil at Sea exclusive to MSC Cruises guests
- A 305-ft.-long Mediterranean Promenade lined with international shops and restaurants
- An immersive art experience featuring etchings from Edgar Degas' Danse Dessin series
- Dedicated children's areas designed in partnership with Chicco and LEGO
- The world's first virtual digital cruise assistant – ZOE – in every stateroom
Since arriving in Hamburg on November 6, MSC Grandiosa was the subject and star of an immersive lightshow at the German city's Blue Port. Spectacular light installations by renowned artist Michael Batz bathed the port in shades of blue reminiscent of the sea to symbolize MSC Cruises' long-standing commitment to the ocean. And, MSC Grandiosa's striking silhouette was seen shimmering alongside the famous Elbphilharmonie on Hamburg's Elbe river.
The traditional Christening ceremony took place in different locations across the ship, hosted by talented actress, TV presenter, model and singer, Michelle Hunziker alongside co-host TV host & actor Jochen Schropp, one of Germany's favorite entertainers.
The festivities didn't stop there – a purpose-built "MSC Village" on the banks of the River Elbe brought the festivities to shore, welcoming 5,000 locals to experience the christening from land with live music and food trucks. Guests were joined by the popular German TV couple Annemarie & Wayne Carpendale who acted as presenters and hosts.
The evening's main spectacle occurred as MSC Grandiosa passed the Elbphilharmonie just as a special lightshow illuminated the building and ship. She took center stage on the River Elbe as Godmother Sophia Loren officially named her 15th MSC Cruises ship, followed by a celebratory firework display. MSC Grandiosa then passed through a spectacular gateway of blue light returning to her dock, symbolizing the new ship's entry to the world.
Guests on board then enjoyed a gourmet four course menu created by renowned 3 Michelin starred German chef Harald Wohlfahrt at the Gala Dinner. The menu for guests started with Chilled king crab salad with crustacean coulis and imperial caviar or Guinea fowl napoleon with apple-ginger quenelle, Riesling gelée and brioche. Next up was the traditional German dish, "Maultasche" – pasta filled with winter truffles and pistou sauce. The main dish served was an oven-roasted turbot in a saffron-mussel fumet and vegetable mélange, or a duo of veal tenderloin and braised cheek, tender savoy cabbage, glazed carrot and roasted herb jus. Finishing off the gourmet feast, guests chose from a Pistachio parfait with orange granité and exotic fruit cocktail or Chocolate tart with caramelized pears and vanilla-mascarpone ice cream.
Guests danced into the night in the Galleria Grandiosa, the ship's iconic 305-ft.-long Mediterranean promenade where popular German DJ Mousse T. and British singer Emma Lanford performed.
MSC Grandiosa will begin regular 7-night cruises in the Western Mediterranean from November 23 with six embarkation ports calling Genoa, Civitavecchia, Italy; Palermo, Sicily; Valetta, Malta; Barcelona, Spain; and Marseille, France.
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