MSC Cruises has announced that its current season in the Arabian Gulf will be extended by three months.
According to a press release, the MSC Bellissima will sail 12 additional seven-night cruises between Apr. 2 April and June 25 calling Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sir Bani Yas Island in the United Arab Emirates and Doha in Qatar
The ship will finish her planned Red Sea itineraries on March 26 from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and then move to the Arabian Gulf to take over on Apr. 2 from the MSC Virtuosa.
The Virtuosa has been sailing in the Gulf region since November 2021 and on finishing the winter season she will undertake a grand voyage to Europe and homeport in Southampton, UK for summer 2022.
The MSC Bellissima will transfer to the Far East to perform her itineraries from July in Japan and China, MSC said.
MSC Cruises said that the Arabian Gulf has proven to be “particularly attractive” for its guests this winter thanks to “the appeal of the Virtuosa’s itinerary with extended stays in port and two overnights in Dubai.”
The cruise line thinks that the effectiveness of the health and safety protocols put in place onboard the ship and also by the local authorities for entry and stay in the region have also made guests feel safe.
“We have seen that the itineraries in the UAE and Qatar have been very popular with our guests and so to respond to this demand we have decided to extend our presence in the region … We would like to thank the authorities in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Doha for their close collaboration and effective ways of working to ensure the health and safety of our guests and crew,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO of MSC Cruises.
“The decision to deploy MSC Bellissima for this extended part of the season was taken because this is a highly popular and well appreciated ship with a richness of features, entertainment and dining as well as offering the MSC Yacht Club … These cruises are also appealing as they are very accessible to our guests, thanks to the great flight connections into Dubai International Airport,” Onorato added.
Onorato reminded that MSC is offering a comprehensive Fly&Cruise program with the Emirates airline, with flights from 21 international airports.