Ancient Istanbul - Embarkation Port for New MSC Divina

The ancient seaport of Istanbul will play a key role in MSC Cruises’ East Mediterranean program for the 138,000-tonne MSC Divina, to be launched in Marseille in late May this year.

Sydney, Australia, March 17, 2012 --( Turkey’s largest city will be an embarkation and disembarkation port for the new ship on a series of seven-night round-trips from June 2 until October 27 this year, prices starting at $939 per person, twin share.

“This is an exciting move not only for us as a cruise line but for passengers wanting to explore more of Turkey - before and after a cruise,” said Lynne Clarke, managing director of MSC Cruises Australia and New Zealand.

“Passengers will be able to marvel over the UNESCO World Heritage sites, to see buildings that reflected the various peoples and empires that have ruled over the centuries, before or after taking their week-long cruise,” she said.

“To combine such a program with a new ship like MSC Divina augers well for a maiden season in the East Mediterranean with calls also made on such ports as Bari, Katakolon (Olympia), Izmir, also in Turkey, and Dubrovnik on the Croatian coast.”

MSC Divina, which will be named in a gala presentation by the cruise line’s godmother, screen legend Sophia Loren, on May 26, will also use the more traditional East Mediterranean port of Venice as an embarkation and disembarkation point on these seven-night round cruises.

MSC Cruises is the world’s leading cruise company in the Mediterranean, South African and Brazilian markets and operates across the globe. Its modern fleet comprises eleven ships (soon to become 12): MSC Splendida and MSC Fantasia (the largest ships ever built for a European ship owner), MSC Poesia, MSC Orchestra, MSC Musica, MSC Sinfonia, MSC Armonia, MSC Opera, MSC Lirica and MSC Melody. MSC Magnifica was launched in March 2010, MSC Divina to be launched on May 26, 2012. The fleet cruises year-round in the Mediterranean and seasonally in Northern Europe, the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean, North America and Canada, South America, the Indian Ocean and South and West Africa. MSC Cruises is the only company in the world to receive the "6 Golden Pearls" award from the Bureau Veritas in recognition of its high level of quality management and environmental responsibility. MSC has also achieved ISO 9001 and ISO 22000 certification for the quality and food safety of all aspects of its catering, both onshore and onboard. MSC Cruises cares about the welfare of children, and as a responsible market leader believes in making a positive impact in the regions where it operates. To this end, the company recently formed a partnership with UNICEF to fund a community project aimed at providing disadvantaged children in Brazil with a quality education.
MSC Cruises (Australia)
Ricki Hudson