The smallish class of ships won’t be huge following their transformation, but they will be larger, filled with more features, and accommodate more passengers and crew. The upgrades will add new entertainment options, technological advancements, expanded shopping options, and up to nearly 200 new cabins per ship. The ships will also have entirely new splash parks, with water features and water cannons. Additionally, onboard boutiques will be enhanced with new interiors, more space, and an all new high-end perfumery with display corners dedicated to leading brands, such as Dior, Lancôme, and Dolce & Gabbana.
“When our four Lirica class ships return to the seas after a total of 38 weeks in dry dock, they will be entirely new ships with additional amenities and comfort for our travelers, allowing them to reach sophisticated and refined destinations around the world,” said MSC Cruises’ Chief Executive Officer, Gianni Onorato, during a press conference in Rome. “The extensive renovations represent a huge investment, and reaffirms, once again, our company’s dedication to high standards, cutting-edge technology and continuous product innovation. MSC Cruises’ ships are works of art in their own right. With these exciting upgrades to our fleet—already renowned for its unrivaled style and elegance—we will be even more competitive”.
The dry dock schedule for the MSC Cruises Lirica Class “renaissance program” is:
· MSC Armonia: August 31 to November 17, 2014The four Lirica class ships, built between 2003 and 2005 at the STX yards in Saint-Nazaire, France, will be upgraded by Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri. The ships are currently 251 meters (823 feet) long, weigh 60,000 tons, and carry 2,069 passengers. With the addition of 193 passenger cabins, 59 crew member cabins, and other new features, the ships will be 275 meters (902 feet) long, weigh 65,000 tons, and carry 2,680 passengers after renovations are complete.
· MSC Sinfonia: 12 January 12 to March 16, 2015
· MSC Opera: May 2 to July 4 2015
· MSC Lirica: August 21 to November 9, 2015
While MSC Cruises didn’t reveal exactly how the transformations are to be accomplished in their announcement, by taking into consideration the increased post-renovation length of approximately 79 feet, we can assume that the ships will be “stretched”—a process that involves cutting a ship apart and inserting an entirely new section before putting it all back together again. However, the new water parks could be added by building up with the addition of a new deck. No matter how it is accomplished, it will be an amazing feat that bears keeping an eye on and we’ll keep you posted here on the blog and in Cruise Diva’s Cruise News as details become available.
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