It was an industry first on January 5 when two MSC Cruises ships departed at the same time and from the same port, Genoa, to embark on world cruises. MSC Magnifica and MSC Poesia sailed together through the Western Mediterranean and parted ways as they began their transatlantic crossings.
5,000 Guests Onboard MSC World Cruises
MSC Cruises made history at the Italian port of Genoa as its MSC Magnifica began a 119-day world cruise and the MSC Poesia launched her 117-day voyage, both to far flung and exotic destinations. About 5,000 guests are aboard the two ships; MSC Magnifica has a capacity of 3,223, while MSC Poesia can accommodate 2,500.
The cruise line in October 2021 had canceled the MSC Poesia’s world cruise in 2022 due to port limitations stemming from the pandemic. At the time, the ship’s 2023 world cruise aboard MSC Poesia was already sold out, so MSC Cruises scheduled the MSC Magnifica to operate a second world cruise this year, following the same itinerary MSC Poesia was to sail last year.
Where the MSC Ships Are Heading
When the ships part company at the edge of the Western Mediterranean, MSC Magnifica will cross the Atlantic Ocean to South America, rounding Cape Horn and cruising to Peru before heading to French Polynesia, Australia, and India. The ship will call at ports on the Arabian peninsula, transit the Suez Canal and return to the Mediterranean.
MSC Poesia will cross the Atlantic to the Caribbean, transit the Panama Canal and sail the Mexican Riviera, heading up the US West Coast to San Francisco. The ship will continue to Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia, Philippines, Japan, China, and Hong Kong before calling at Dubai. It also will transit the Suez, returning to the Mediterranean after calling in Greece.
Both ships are MSC Musica-class vessels; MSC Magnifica entered service in 2010 and MSC Poesia in 2008.
Famous Chefs to Join Both World Cruises
MSC Cruises said that passengers aboard both world cruises will experience special international culinary offerings when guest chefs join the sailings to prepare custom, multi-course menus. Veteran Brazilian Chef and Restauranteur Allan Vila Espejo will visit both ships and prepare Brazilian specialties such as Manioc soup and Bahia-style fish stew.
MSC Poesia will welcome two additional chefs. Japanese-American Chef Roy Yamaguchi will prepare favorites such as grilled teriyaki pork chop with Hawaiian chimichurri, while Michelin-starred Swedish chef, TV personality and author Niklas Ekstedt will serve cuisine focused on natural ingredients.
On MSC Magnifica, Peruvian Chef James Berckemeyer will entice guests with a menu of Peruvian veal cheek and local caramel pudding.
Other highlights on both ships include special enrichment programs, champagne tastings, guest lecturers and entertainers, and 30 full-scale production shows, among other activities.
MSC Poesia will sail a world cruise in 2024, featuring a new itinerary that will include calls in South Africa, South America, the Caribbean, the US and Canada, plus Greenland and Iceland. A special feature for next year’s world cruise, which is open for bookings, is an exploration of the Amazon River in Brazil.