- Tuesday 08 May 2018
The incredible Meraviglia from cruise company MSC docked at Cobh port this weekend. Currently ranked as the world's fifth biggest cruise ship, the Meraviglia is 19 decks high and rises 65 metres above the waterline. Capable of carrying 5,700 people, this is the cruise ship with the largest carrying capacity to ever dock at an Irish port.
Of course, our cruise specialist Jackie just had to get on board for a look and she certainly wasn't disappointed. Meraviglia (Italian for 'wonder') is the only ship to offer Cirque du Soleil original shows at sea. This impressive ship also features a 96-metre-long central gallery filled with restaurants, bars and fantastic duty-free shopping.
At night, the promenade comes alive with entertainment and music, all under its crowning glory- a LED domed ceiling which runs the length of the gallery. This incredible feature displays an atmospheric digital screen which animates the whole area images like with stained glass or underwater worlds. Feel the world outside come indoors as the LED dome also mimics the sky above with sunrises, sunsets and starry night skies.
There is so much to do and see onboard, with the luxurious Aurea Spa, 4D cinema, casino, TV studio, library, hair salon and Technogym-equipped leisure centre. Meraviglia has a fun, lively onboard vibe- perfect for families or groups of friends.
Eye-catching Swarovski crystal-encrusted stairs are the highlight of Meraviglia's magnificent central atrium. Coming in at a cool €1.5 million per staircase, these incredible structures certainly allow for a grand entrance!
MSC Meraviglia offers guests some of the most plentiful poolside space at sea. Relax by the Atmosphere Pool, surrounded by beautifully-designed lighting and a giant screen. Or, soak up the sun by the side of the Horizon Pool- after dark, this area is transformed into a beautiful outdoor dance and entertainment space.
Chocolate lovers will appreciate the fantastic Jean-Philippe Chocolate Café on the promenade. Relax by the porthole windows with a cup of hot chocolate or coffee and sample some of the delicious sweets on offer. Some of the highlights are the incredible creations on display here, created by the cafe's onboard team and all made entirely from chocolate. Jackie's favourites included Groot from the Guardians Of The Galaxy and Avengers films and a beaufitul underwater coral scene:
There are 12 main dining venues on board, including Eataly Ristorante Italiano, Butcher's Cut Steak House, Kaito Teppanyaki Sushi Bar and the Marketplace Buffet which is open 20 hours a day. For after-dinner drinks, choose from the Carousel Lounge, Edge Cocktail Bar, Champagne Bar and traditional-style Pub.
MSC Meraviglia is a great choice for families too. There's lots to keep little ones happy, all thoughfully located in one area. There are great chill out areas for teens only and a baby club designed for 1 to 3 years, in partnership with children's brand Chicco.
Children's facilities include the Polar Aqua Park with three twisting slides, a full-size bowling alley, Formula 1 and flight VR simulators, indoor sportplex, Himalayan Bridge rope course and some great Lego Experience areas.
MSC Meraviglia offers fantastic accommodation options, from spacious Interior and Ocean View Cabins with private bathrooms, mini bars and air conditioning, to Balcony Cabins offering you private outdoor space and great sea views. Choosing a luxurious Yacht Club room gives you access to perks such as 24 hour butler service and entry to the exclusive Yacht Club areas like the One Sun Deck and Top Sail Lounge.
Cluster cabins allow for up to three staterooms to be connected- ideal for families or groups holidaying together. Meraviglia's state of the art technology allows you to get all the information you need, make online bookings and view ship maps using the free MSC For Me app. Use the interactive bracelets to keep track of children, make purchases and open your cabin door.
Here's Jackie's summary of her day onboard the Meraviglia: "What an amazing day onboard the MSC Meraviglia in Cobh. She is a stunning ship with wide open spaces, glamorous decor and fabulous outdoor areas. I have never seen crowds like there were today in Cobh, with people coming from everywhere just to see this beauty... and the sun came out too! Well done to all the Cobh traders and tourism groups for creating a special day, the cruise passengers and MSC staff were very impressed."
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