MSC Cruises to position World Europa in the UAE

Biggest ship in MSC Cruises' fleet to be joined by MSC Opera

MSC Cruises continues to show confidence in the Middle East market, revealing plans to deploy its biggest ship, MSC World Europa, in the Gulf region for the 2022/23 sailing season. The LNG-powered, 6,762 passenger ship is on track for delivery in October 2022.

The cruise line has also dedicated a second ship to the Middle East for the first time, MSC Opera.

Credit: MSC Cruises

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MSC Cruises’ CEO Gianni Onorato revealed the plan at the launch of a new passenger ship jetty at Sir Bani Yas Island in the United Arab Emirates.

This development, according to MSC Cruises, will be greatly welcomed by cruise holidaymakers visiting the island off the coast of Abu Dhabi.

MSC Virtuosa at the brand new jetty on Sir Bani Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, UAW | Credit: @pericocruise/Facebook

Onorato hailed the cruise sector in the UAE as being an integral part of its dynamic tourism industry, paid tribute to the health and safety measures throughout the country and described MSC Cruises’ business outlook for next winter in the UAE and the Gulf as “very positive” as a result.

“The UAE is a very important market for us and next winter we are going to deploy our newest addition to our fleet – MSC World Europa – and further increase our capacity from this year with the introduction of a second ship, MSC Opera, in recognition of the region’s ever-growing status in the cruise sector.”

MSC World Europa will redefine the cruise experience with a variety of never-before-seen features unlike anything at sea today and the vessel will be an additional benefit to the UAE’s tourism industry. The ship will attract many international passengers from around the world, especially from Europe, and we hope to also see strong interest from guests from the Gulf Cooperation Council, especially the UAE.

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Currently, MSC Cruises has deployed MSC Virtuosa in the Arabian Gulf. The still-new MSC Virtuosa was christened in Dubai late last year. Her season in the region will conclude on 26 March 2022, replaced by MSC Bellissima between 2 April and 25 June 2022. It is the first time MSC Cruises has extended its sailing season in the Gulf and offered spring break holidays at sea.

MSC World Europa from December will be based in the UAE offering seven-night cruises from Dubai and Abu Dhabi to Sir Bani Yas Island, Dammam in Saudi Arabia and Doha in Qatar.

MSC Opera will offer a different seven-night itinerary from Dubai and Abu Dhabi, calling at Sir Bani Yas Island. Guests can then discover Oman with a call at the capital city Muscat and Khasab, the country’s most northerly city. The cruise finishes with an overnight in Dubai to give guests plenty of time to explore the incredible metropolis.

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