The Port of Boston welcomed MSC Cruises’ MSC Meraviglia, the largest ship that will dock at the Massachusetts port during the Canada/New England cruise season in 2023. The ship’s call was her first post-pandemic visit to the historic city, as she makes her way north along Canada’s Atlantic coast.
MSC Meraviglia Calls at Historic Port
A 16-day Canada/New England cruise with a two-day visit to Bermuda brought a 4,500-guest mega-ship, MSC Cruises’ MSC Meraviglia, to Boston on September 26, 2023. The 171,598-gross ton ship is the largest to visit the port during the popular fall foliage season, and will sail three additional voyages in the region through October.
MSC Meraviglia’s current cruise plus her upcoming 10, 11-, and 21-day Canada/New England sailings are expected to deliver roughly $2 million in local spending by guests and crew, who together bring the ship’s total capacity to about 5,700, revenue estimates from Cruise Line International Association show.
The ship, which launched in 2016, is sailing roundtrip from New York and will also call at Saint John, New Brunswick; Portland, Maine; Sydney, Nova Scotia; and Prince Edward Island, Canada, before returning to the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal.
On September 25, 2023, MSC Meraviglia called at Newport, Rhode Island, where she also holds the title of the largest cruise ship to call at that port this season.
Like the many sightseeing attractions in Newport, such as the famous 20th-century mansions that dot the coastline, Boston offers many historic, architectural, and cultural landmarks that cruise guests can explore, including the Freedom Trail, the famous Quincy Market, the New England Aquarium, and many museums.
Along the New England and Canadian coasts, guests can enjoy the autumn colors as MSC Meraviglia sails past forested areas, now highlighted with the bright hues of fall.
An Expanding US Presence
The 2023 season marks the first time MSC Meraviglia will sail Canada/New England itineraries from New York, and her deployment enhances the cruise line’s ongoing expansion in the US market. The ship deployed to New York in summer 2023, sailing a series of Bermuda cruises that began on August 21. Her Canada/New England itineraries launched in September.
MSC Cruises currently has ships home-ported in three destinations, New York, Miami, and Port Canaveral, and in late 2022 signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding to possibly develop a cruise terminal at the Port of Galveston, in Texas.
The cruise line currently homeports MSC Seascape in Miami, and also will operate MSC Magnifica and MSC Divina from PortMiami this year. MSC Seaside is home-ported in Port Canaveral.
Onboard MSC Meraviglia
Guests sailing aboard MSC Meraviglia have a choice of 10 stateroom categories, including the luxury level MSC Yacht Club, the line’s ship-within-a-ship experience that features exclusive dining and lounge areas, and butler service.
The ship features 12 dining venues, including Butcher’s Cut Steakhouse, Ocean Cay, and Teppanyaki, and 20 bars. Her extensive waterpark area offers three slides and a ropes course. For relaxation, guests can visit the MSC Aurea Spa, where a wide variety of treatments and therapies are available.
An entertainment area offers the MSC Formula Racer, a flight simulator, and an expansive Sportsplex where guests can play several court games.
Based in Switzerland and with a historic footprint in Italy, MSC Cruises operates 23 ships and is known for European-style cruising. Its newest ship, MSC Euribia, debuted in June 2023.
The 184,011 gross ton ship that can accommodate up to 6,334 guests is considered the industry’s most energy-efficient cruise ship, operating on liquified natural gas (LNG) and low-sulfur marine gas oil.