Finest floating hotel in town
A BUMPER SUMMER CRUISE season is forecast for southern Africa as passenger bookings for the largest and most modern ship to operate out of a local port have already soared to more than 46 000.
The nine-deck, 58 600 ton MSC Sinfonia with capacity for 2 100 passengers, docks in Durban for the first time on November 13 after a maiden southbound cruise from the Mediterranean and a one-day stopover in Cape Town.
Described as the finest floating hotel to visit South Africa, MSC Sinfonia opens the season with a two-day cruise out of Durban.
A full schedule of long and short cruises to Mozambique, Madagascar, Comores, Mauritius and Reunion continues through to April 2010.
“Over 46 000 passengers have already booked cruises on MSC Sinfonia,” said Allan Foggit, the director of Starlight Cruises, the general sales agents for MSC Crociere in South Africa.
He said sales for MSC Sinfonia were 20 percent ahead of the combined sales at the same time last year for the two cruise ships, MSC Melody and MSC Rhapsody. This was in spite of the current trying financial times. “We attribute this phenomenal response to the fact that MSC Sinfonia represents exceptional value, especially with the option of up to two children under 18 being able to cruise free if accompanied by two adults. It is certainly the most affordable and exciting local holiday option.”
MSC Sinfonia’s facilities include 777 cabins, three restaurants and a buffet, seven bars, a cigar lounge, disco, casino, business and conference centre, a spa and beauty centre, two swimming pools, a sports centre, golf simulator, library, card room, children’s playroom, teenagers club, a shopping area with duty-free shops and boutiques, an internet cafe and a medical centre.
MSC Crociere is the only company in the world to have received the “6 Golden Pearls” award from the Bureau Veritas in recognition of its high level of quality management and environmental protection. MSC Crociere also cares about the welfare of children, and to this end, the company recently forged a partnership with Unicef to fund a community project aimed at providing disadvantaged children in Brazil with a high quality education.