The unveiling of MSC’s newest prototype cruise ship, Meraviglia, has been long anticipated, so for journalists and travel agents from the four corners of the world, this past weekend was quite an experience.
The ship certainly lives up to its name – in English – Wonder, the biggest cruise ship in Europe yes, but also demonstrating that it is not just size that matters. As CEO Gianni Onorato says “our aim was not to built a big ship but a rich ship”.
One runs out of superlatives to describe this ship – as demonstrated in the comments we collected from fellow guests. Elegant, sophisticated, innovative, classy – the epitome of Italian style.
Cabins are spacious and comfortable with top quality beds and bedding ensuring a wonderful night’s sleep. MSC pride themselves on having the highest ratio of cabins with balconies (75%) and is also now catering for single travellers with a number of single cabins available.
The heart of the ship, the promenade features the absolutely stunning and unique 80 metre long LED ceiling, recreating famous ceilings from across the world. While the Sportsplex Park has to be seen to be believed. Not only can you practice your Lewis Hamilton impression in the F1 cars, you can shoot zombies and monsters in the 4D cinema, fly upside down in the flight simulator, go bowling, or just amuse yourself in the arcade.
For foodies Meraviglia offers a choice of 12 restaurants. The state of the art Marketplace buffet offers the wide choice you’d expect on a ship of this size – excelling in pasta and pizza and mouth watering desserts, while the main restaurant is elegant and spacious.
Pools, indoor and out, waterslides, a gym and spa ensure those looking for a workout, or just a cool place to relax, are well catered for.
Perhaps, next to the promenade ceiling – the greatest innovation on the ship is the creation of a dedicated Cirque de Soleil theatre, which for the first time at sea will offer two unique shows, Viaggo and Sonor.
While the ship meets disability legislation, we felt there were some minor issues that could improve the experience of wheelchair users, for example electronic buttons for opening heavy doors, including disabled toilets.
We loved the exclusive Yacht Club, across three floors with it’s own pool and restaurant, however it means other passengers cannot access the same panoramic views at the front of the ship.
Along, it seems, with all our other guests, we loved this ship. With something for everyone, this is a ship for singles, couples, families, young and old. And don’t forget, with its commitment to status matching, you can try it out while enjoying a similar level of benefits to your usual cruise line.
MSC Meraviglia will be cruising the Med until late 2019 when it will relocate to the Caribbean.
As frequent cruise travellers, Andrew and Linda rate this ship 5 star!