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•    MSC Virtuosa will offer a choice of 3,4, or 7-night sailings around the British Isles with protected shore excursions in all ports of call
•    All-inclusive promotion includes premium drinks package and service charge starting from £499
•    Stress Free Booking policy to give guests flexible booking conditions

London, UK – 1 April 2021 – Sales opened today for the eagerly awaited inaugural season of MSC Cruises’ flagship MSC Virtuosa, offering a special range of sailings around the British Isles this summer.

Starting from 20 May, the line’s latest and most innovative vessel will set sail on her maiden voyage from Southampton with a four-night cruise and will then offer three- and four-night mini-cruises.

From 12 June MSC Virtuosa will start to operate longer seven-night sailings through to mid-September, offering guests additional embarkation ports in Southampton, Liverpool and Greenock as well as calls at Portland in Dorset and Belfast in Northern Ireland.

All sailings are available to UK residents only and guests of all ages are welcome on board - both vaccinated and unvaccinated at the present time. Initially, and in line with the applicable requirements at the time of sailing, the ship will be operating with a reduced capacity to facilitate implementation of MSC Cruises’ industry-leading health and safety protocol.

Couples and friends looking for the ultimate long-weekend can enjoy three and four-night mini-cruises all departing from Southampton and calling at one of Britain’s most picturesque islands, Portland in Dorset, where guests can go ashore and discover this stunning part of the British coastline as part of a protected shore excursion. These mini-sailings include two days at sea so that guests can fully experience MSC Virtuosa’s innovative new facilities on board. With a late sail from Southampton and prices starting from £499, these mini-cruises will provide guests the perfect getaway with no hassle.

Those looking to take a longer break and families looking for a stress-free holiday, can join one of the seven-night sailings available on MSC Virtuosa. These week-long cruises will feature multiple ports of embarkation including Liverpool and Greenock, close to Glasgow, and port calls in Portland and the eclectic city of Belfast. The sailings will also offer a choice of excursions for guests to enjoy safe and protected visits ashore as part of a “social bubble” with the same high standard of health and safety measures as those implemented on board.

The seven-night cruises include three sea days so there is plenty of time for guests to enjoy all of the things they have missed during this last year, such as getting dressed up for an elegant dinner out on the ship, indulging in their favourite cocktail whilst watching the sun set at sea, reconnecting with the kids by having fun bowling, or even taking some much-needed time to relax and unwind in the MSC Aurea Spa.

Antonio Paradiso, MD MSC Cruises UK & Ireland commented, “We have seen real pent-up demand in the UK as people have been waiting to see where they can travel this summer and whether it is safe for them to do so. As holidays have become even more precious and important, we want to ensure that guests feel that they are getting great value for money, without the hassle of organising anything additional once on board. This is why we have introduced an All-Inclusive offering, which is always incredibly popular but now more than ever it’s important for guests to know that everything is taken care of. The All-Inclusive price includes service charges and a premium drinks package. We understand the need from guests to have a product that is great value, easy to understand but also it is important that it is flexible, which is why we have flexible booking terms. All we want guests to do on their MSC Cruises holiday is to relax, unwind, and feel safe.”

MSC Virtuosa is a next-generation megaship with state-of-the-art facilities and the ship is literally a destination in itself with an unparalleled choice of dining, leisure and entertainment services – offering everything that Brits have missed during the various lockdowns. Guests will be able to relax by the pool with a choice of outdoor and indoor pools, treat themselves with an ice cream, spend the afternoon browsing the shops, get a massage in the spa, enjoy a cocktail in one of the 21 bars, eat in a different restaurant every night and round the evening off with a West-End style theatre show. To help guests get the most of out of their holiday, they will be able to use MSC for Me – the multi-channel digital experience that can be accessed through a useful app, through the in-cabin TV or the interactive digital screens around the ship. All of the information in one place making it easy to plan and book services.

For those guests looking for something really special, the MSC Yacht Club on MSC Virtuosa is currently the largest of any in the MSC Cruises’ fleet alongside her sister ship MSC Grandiosa. Featuring 103 exclusive spacious suites including two MSC Yacht Club Royal Suites with a private whirlpool bath on a large balcony and eight MSC Yacht Club duplex cabins, the comfortable and stylish accommodation will make any guest feel like a VIP. With its all-inclusive features, the MSC Yacht Club offers all of the facilities of the private club while also enjoying access to the countless recreation and entertainment possibilities the rest of the ship affords. Spread over three decks at the front of the ship, linked by stunning Swarovski crystal staircases, guests benefit from 24-hour personal butler service and a dedicated concierge team, as well as luxurious private amenities including a gourmet restaurant, elegant lounge, spacious pool area and secluded sundeck.

With five specialty restaurants, five main dining rooms, a 1,336-seat buffet with a new service concept, and 21 bars and lounges, the dining experience on board MSC Virtuosa is second to none. Guests will be able to eat and drink in a different bar and restaurant every night of their cruise! With a wide choice of different dining styles from casual through to formal and bars to suit every occasion, there really will be something to suit everyone.

For total relaxation while on board, guests can visit the world-class MSC Aurea Spa for the chance to switch-off and relax, with a range of treatments including Balinese massages, facials, or maybe just a picture perfect mani-pedi for pool side snaps.

As a family-owned company, MSC Cruises knows how to deliver memorable experiences for the whole family and is renowned for the award-winning family offering. With 700 metres of space including seven rooms dedicated to babies, children and teens from 2 to 17 years and exclusive partnerships with LEGO and Chicco, the Kids Club on Deck 18, centred around a tropical island theme full of adventure and discovery – really is the place to be for the younger travellers.

Guests can enjoy their much overdue escape to the fullest with a premium drinks package and gratuities included on these special range of sailings. 4-night sailings start from £499 and 7-night sailings starting from £849.

All operations will be conducted in accordance with relevant government requirements and will see the implementation of MSC Cruises’ industry-leading health and safety protocol. To ensure passengers have total peace of mind when booking that much needed escape, MSC Cruises’ Stress Free Cruising programme offers guests flexible booking conditions, allowing them to change their sailing up to 15 days prior to departure, while also being guaranteed the highest level of health and safety thanks to our rigorous and industry leading onboard protocol.

It is mandatory for all UK guests to be in possession of COVID-19 travel insurance prior to their holiday with us. While we hope there is no need to use it, guests must ensure their policy covers their holiday from booking through to the end of their cruise. This will ensure total peace of mind for them knowing they are fully protected. Proof of insurance which includes COVID-19 protection for all passengers is a requirement to embark the ship and failure to produce it will unfortunately mean guests will be denied embarkation.

MSC Cruises has partnered with Europe Assistance and we are finalizing details in order to offer appropriate and comprehensive travel insurance cover for guests’ holidays. To find out more on cover availability contact our UK based contact center directly on 0203 426 3010.

Non-vaccinated guests will also be required to show proof of negative test done within 72 hours prior to embarkation. All guests will be tested on arrival at the cruise terminal prior to embarkation.

For more information or to book visit , call 0203 426 3010 or contact your local travel agent.

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