Middle East Cruise News

MSC doubles up Dubai cruises again in 2020/21 with Seaview and Lirica

In 2018 MSC Cruises became the first cruise line ever to homeport two cruise ships in Dubai simultaneously, and during next year’s cruise season, they will do it a third time with both MSC Lirica and MSC Seaview confirmed for a double season.

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Between November, 2020 and April, 2021, the two ships will cruise roundtrip from Dubai on Arabian Gulf cruise itineraries. Like MSC Seaview during the same season, MSC Lirica will offer alternating 7-night roundtrip itineraries from Dubai.

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The first itinerary cruises from Dubai and visits Abu Dhabi and Khasab and Muscat in Oman, before returning to Dubai. On the first and last nights of the cruise she’ll stay overnight in port in Dubai, giving passengers the opportunity for night safaris and greater city exploration.

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The second itinerary cruises from Dubai and visits Abu Dhabi as well, but instead of then cruising to Khasab, MSC Lirica will instead spend a day at anchor off Sir Bani Yas Island before cruising to Muscat.

She’ll then return to Dubai, and as with the other itinerary, the ship will stay overnight in Dubai on the first and last nights of the cruise.

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msc lirica alongside at the abu dhabi cruise terminal

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MSC Lirica was initially sent to Dubai to cruise roundtrip to the coast of India, following a similar itinerary to Celebrity Constellation at the time.

However, MSC Cruises has since chosen to keep her within the Arabian Gulf due to the popularity of the region, while Celebrity has since deployed Constellation on longer two week cruises from Dubai to Singapore during the coming season.

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MSC Cruises has not said why they changed Lirica’s Dubai cruise itineraries to skip India and focus only on cruise destinations on the Arabian Gulf, but it may be due to increased competition with Jalesh Cruises.

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The homegrown Indian cruise line launched this year and has made Dubai the first foreign cruise port in which it homeported its cruise ship Karnika (the former Pacific Jewel).

MSC Lirica is one of four identical cruise ships in the MSC fleet. At 275m in length and with a 65,591-gross tonnage these ships are the smallest in the fleet, providing a more low-key, traditional cruise experience that can’t be found aboard a larger ship.

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In 2015, MSC Lirica and her three sister ships underwent an extensive refit that saw them cut in half and lengthened by 22-metres. New public rooms, 190 new cabins and a kid’s splash park on the pool deck were added.

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