It's as long as three football fields (over 331 meters), it's as tall as a 20-story skyscraper (65 meters) and as wide as a 12-lane highway (43 meters). Only one that travels at sea at a speed of 22.3 knots (over 41 kilometers per hour) simultaneously hosting up to 6,334 passengers and 1,704 crew members: a real common Italian medium. Welcome aboard the ship MSC Grandiosa which, today in the Blue Port of Hamburg, will receive the "baptism of the sea" with Sophia Loren as godmother and Michelle Hunziker to lead the event. The Grandiosa with its 181 thousand tons of tonnage becomes the flagship of the MSC fleet, composed of 17 ships that hosted over 2.4 million passengers last year (+20 percent on 2017). To build this World Class, the owner Gianluigi Aponte has drawn a check that is close to a billion euros. In the last 30 months it is the fifth new ship of the company and by 2027 another 12 will be launched, thanks to an investment of 14 billion. Plans justified by the continuous growth of the sector. In Italy, passengers increased by 8.5 percent in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period in 2018.
«Grandiosa», how the super-cruise ship will be: 11 restaurants and water park (and permanent museum on the Impressionists)
The average age is the youngest in Europe: 45 years. "With us it drops to 41, but on Grandiosa we are like in a city divided into neighborhoods – explains to Corriere Pierfrancesco Vago, executive president of MSC Cruises – each dedicated to passengers of different ages. There are 19 bridges, 700 square meters of playrooms, 21 bars, Formula 1 simulators, swimming pools, spas, gyms, starred restaurants, discos, a 975-seat theater for two Cirque du Soleil shows and art exhibitions like the one with 26 works on the study of the dance of Edgar Degas ». In the cabin you have the feeling of being in an ultramodern studio apartment: comfortable bed, wardrobe with sliding doors, wooden desk. There is a litter box: it has three separate openings for plastic, paper and food. MSC focuses on environmental sustainability. "We have a system of recycling, reuse and disposal of all waste – explains the officer Mario Astarita, head of the environment on board – and a high quality wastewater treatment system".
Msc Grandiosa is designed to lower the emissions produced to feed it. "Thanks to the hybrid exhaust there is a 98 percent removal of sulfur oxide from the ship's exhausts – says Antonio Iaccarino, chief engineer – and the hull was built to consume 28 percent less fuel at passenger compared to the ships of the Fantasia Class ». Result possible thanks to the system of optimization of the structure that stabilizes the ship in real time, the selective catalytic reduction (-80 per cent of nitrogen oxide) and the hull covered with eco-compatible paints that reduce aerodynamic drag. Yesterday Msc announced that, from January 1st, it will be "the first cruise line in the world totally zero-carbon impact". It will balance, at its own expense, all direct carbon dioxide emissions "through environmental projects and the purchase of the first carbon credits that will be generated in the oceans". Goals that are not enough in Vago: "By 2030 we will reduce CO2 per passenger / kilometer by 40 percent, compared to 2008". The ship, commanded by the Italian captain Marco Massa, will be attentive even to cetaceans: it has a noise reduction system to avoid disturbing their routes.
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