Magnificent cruise ship MSCSeaside is christened with extraordinary flair in Port Miami
Sophia Loren, Mario Lopez, Andrea Bocelli, Ricky Martin, and Dan Marino are some of the big names who turned out to perform and welcome the MSC Seaside in Miami on Thursday evening.
MSC Cruises, a company with 300 years of maritime heritage, celebrated the massively luxurious ship’s arrival with a time-honored seafaring tradition of a Naming Ceremony.
Along with local officials, and special attendees from across the globe, the ship’s Godmother, Sophia Loren, christened the cruise ship, a North American first for the company.
Loren christened the first new ship for MSC in 2003, the MSC Lirica, and has done the honors ever since.
Seaside, the 4,138-passenger ship, will anchor MSC’s Caribbean itineraries with seven-day cruises from Port Miami, beginning January 6.
MSC executive chairman Pierfrancesco Vago said that the MSC Divina, offering weekly departures from Miami, sources only 40% to 50% of passengers from North America. With the arrival of the Seaside, MSC hopes to increase that number to 80%.
The Geneva-based cruiseline has 12 ships, with deployment ranging from South America to the Middle East to South Africa to China. The bulk of its business, however, comes from Europe with the Mediterranean countries of Italy, Spain and France being particularly important.
The star-studded affair was a wild success for both the cruiseline and Port Miami.
“It’s an evening we’ve been waiting many months for,” said Roberto Fusaro, president of MSC Cruises USA.