Largest MSC cruise ship
MSC Cruises is a Swiss-based, global cruise company with headquarters in Geneva and Naples. It is the world's largest privately owned cruise company, employs 15, 500 people worldwide and has offices in 45 countries. MSC Cruises (Italian: MSC Crociere S.p.A.) is part of the Mediterranean Shipping Company S.A. (MSC), the world's second biggest container shipping operator.
Originally founded as Lauro Lines by Achille Lauro, the company entered the cruise business in the 1960s, operating two ships, the Angelina Lauro and MS Achille Lauro, both of which met fiery ends. After the Angelina Lauro burnt in the port of St. Thomas in 1979, Lauro Lines, also known as Flotta Lauro, met with bad times, now operating just one ship, the Achille Lauro. In 1985, the Achille Lauro was hijacked by members of the Palestine Liberation Front, and the much-publicised event further dropped passenger numbers. In 1989, Mediterranean Shipping Company bought Flotta Lauro and renamed it StarLauro Cruises. In 1994, the Achille Lauro caught fire and sank. In 1995, the company name was changed to MSC Cruises.
MSC Cruises is the fourth largest cruise company in the world, after Carnival Corporation & plc, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and Norwegian Cruise Lines with a 5.2% share of all passengers carried in 2015.
In 2014 MSC Cruises announced that the four Lirica class ships will undergo renovation under the "Renaissance Programme".
In 2015, MSC Cruises had four new ships on order from STX France and Fincantieri, with options for three more. The first two ships are due to be delivered in May 2017 (MSC Meraviglia) and November 2017 (MSC Seaside).
Main working area
- Western Mediterranean: MSC Preziosa, MSC Fantasia, MSC Armonia, MSC Meraviglia
- Eastern Mediterranean: MSC Magnifica, MSC Poesia, MSC Musica, MSC Lirica, MSC Opera
- Northern Europe: MSC Splendida, MSC Orchestra, MSC Sinfonia
- Caribbean: MSC Divina, MSC Seaside, MSC Opera (winter season)
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