New MSC flagship confirmed

23 Jul 2010
MSC Fantasia, lead-ship of the class

MSC Fantasia, lead-ship of the class

MSC Cruises and STX France have announced the conclusion of the legal process that finalises the order of a new ‘Fantasia’ class cruise ship (hull number U32), the 12th in the MSC Cruises fleet.

To be named MSC Fantastica, the 140,000gt newbuilding will become the flagship of the MSC fleet and have a 5,000 passenger capacity. STX France’s St. Nazaire shipyard had already started working on the new vessel despite not signing the final contract on the LOI.

The process began earlier this year on 1 March with the signature of a Letter of Intent but, given the various legal and financial interlocutors involved, took some time to complete.

An important factor in the success of the project was the financial backing provided by French financial institutions, and especially by Coface, the French Export Credit Agency, making it possible for the vessel to be delivered as required by MSC Cruises by the end of spring 2012.

“We are very pleased that this important contract with MSC is now confirmed,” said Jacques Hardelay, general manager of STX France, “and we look forward to continuing the longstanding relationship between the teams of MSC Cruises and STX France for the successful delivery of this magnificent vessel”.

Pierfrancesco Vago, CEO of MSC Cruises, added: “We are delighted at the confirmation of this important investment, a sign of the success of our ambitious growth strategy, and we would like to thank all those who have made it possible. Together with STX France, we are now keen to focus our energies on further enhancing MSC Cruises’ leading positioning within the world’s cruise industry. MSC Fantastica will build on the success of the Fantasia prototype, appreciated by more and more guests as unique in its class thanks to innovate features like the MSC Yacht Club, the ship within a ship offering unprecedented levels of privacy and personalised service.”

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