Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri has completed the delivery of the largest cruise ship ever built in Italy to MSC Cruises. The 170,400 gross tons MSC Seascape is the last of four cruise ships ordered by MSC Cruises from Fincantieri with the first of the ships introduced five years ago.
These cruise ships use design concepts developed by Fincantieri that reposition the main weight of the ship, primarily the engines, forward in the midship position. Balanced weight repositioning provides greater structural and hydrodynamic efficiency. The use of a narrower superstructure both creates a large exterior promenade and allows the ship to increase the number of cabins by up to 10%.
MSC says the unique design with its curved aft superstructure and glazed elevators reflects the look of high-end Miami buildings and gives the ships a unique appearance. After completing the first two ships, MSC Seaside in 2017 and MSC sea view in 2018 the design was extended to create the larger Seaside Evo class which became the largest cruise ship built in Italy. The MSC Seascape delivered today as well as her sister ship MSC Seashore delivered last year are 1,112 feet long. The ships have a maximum capacity of 5,632 passengers and a crew of 1,648.
“MSC Seascape is the second ship to enter service this year, bringing our modern fleet to 21 ships,” said Gianni Onorato, Managing Director of MSC Cruises at the handover ceremony in Monfalcone, Italy. “We are proud to welcome her to our fleet as she is the second Seaside EVO vessel and completes the innovative Seaside class.”
Built at a cost of over €1 billion, the new cruise ship is part of a more than €7 billion investment by MSC in Fincantieri. The shipyard, in addition to the four Seaside cruise ships, is also contracted to build six smaller luxury cruise ships for MSC’s new Explora Journeys brand, due to launch in 2023.
The cruise ship uses a design concept from MSC that repositions the main weight amidships (Fincantieri)
MSC also builds large cruise ships with Chantiers de l’Atlantique in France. They recently took delivery of one of the largest cruise ships in the world and the world’s largest LNG-powered cruise ship, the MSC World Europefrom the French shipbuilder.
The new ships are part of an ongoing effort by MSC to expand its cruise operations. The company pointed out that as of October 2022, it had received more than 400,000 new bookings, the highest monthly total in the company’s history. “This reflects the significant and continued investment made in our fleet, which is one of the most modern in the industry with five new state-of-the-art vessels delivered in the past three years alone,” Onorato said. The cruise line is expected to take delivery of two more French-built cruise ships in mid-2023 and 2025.
Among the unique features on board the new MSC Seascape is nearly 140,000 square feet of exterior deck space, including the 1,772-foot long promenade. The ship features 11 restaurants and 19 bars and lounges, as well as a large children’s area and the largest suite complex of any MSC cruise ship. Among the entertainment is a new ride that MSC describes as a combination of a rollercoaster ride with a personalized DJ music experience.
The design also incorporates a wide range of environmental features, including selective catalytic reduction systems on each of the four Wartsila 14V 46F engines to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions and a hybrid exhaust gas cleaning system to eliminate sulfur oxide from its emissions. There are also advanced sewage treatment systems, advanced waste management systems, ballast water treatment systems and various effective energy efficiency upgrades – from heat recovery systems to capable LED lighting. to save energy. The vessel also has an underwater radiated noise management system to reduce and isolate potential effects on marine mammals.
The MSC Seascape will be christened in New York in early December as part of MSC Cruises’ efforts to expand its presence in the United States. The ship will then begin its inaugural season cruises from Miami to the Caribbean. She is expected to sail year-round from Miami through 2025.
While the MSC Seascape now holds the title of largest liner built in Italy, it will be eclipsed in just over a year by an even largest cruise ship. Fincantieri has started the construction of the new Princess of the Sun for Princess Cruises from Carnival Corporation. Due to enter service in February 2024, this new vessel will be 1,133 feet long and 175,500 gross tons. It is also the first LNG-powered cruise ship that Fincantieri is building as part of a two-ship order for Princess.