The 59,000 ton luxury cruise liner MSC Lirica is due in Abu Dhabi’s Mina Zayed tonight (October 29) as it arrives to home port for 19, eight day/seven night cruises around the Arabian Gulf in the 2011/2012 cruise season.
The liner – the first to home port in the UAE capital – arrives on her maiden journey to Abu Dhabi from Genoa, Italy with a complement of 2,400 passengers and crew on board. The liner’s passengers hail from Australia, Europe, Scandinavia, South America and the USA.
The liner will arrive to a red carpet welcome planned by Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA), Abu Dhabi Ports Company and Abu Dhabi Terminals, which will include a spectacular fireworks display and heritage entertainment laid on in the new Mina Zayed cruise terminal, including henna, calligraphy and falconry displays as well as traditional dance performances.
The arrival of MSC Lirica, which can accommodate 2,199 guests in 784 cabins, marks the entry of MSC Cruises, the world’s leading cruise company in the Mediterranean, South African and Brazilian markets which operates across the globe, into the Abu Dhabi market.
MSC Lirica will begin her inaugural Gulf cruise on Monday, October 31 for a journey which takes in Muscat and Khasab in Oman, Al Fujairah and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates before returning ‘home’ to Abu Dhabi.
MSC Cruises joins an expanding portfolio of cruise operators using Abu Dhabi which includes Costa Cruises, AIDA and Royal Caribbean who jointly will bring around 170,000 tourists to the UAE capital before the 2011/2012 season ends next April. More info