Middle East Cruise News

MSC prepares three cruise ships as floating hotels for 2022 FIFA World Cup

Doha will host six cruise ships as floating hotel during the upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup, with MSC Cruises supplying three of them.

MSC World Europa and MSC Poesia will be berthed next to the new Grand Cruise Terminal, while MSC Opera will berth on the opposite side of the port.

All three vessels will be able to accommodate 13,000 guests, adding much needed hotel capacity to Doha’s hospitality sector for the tournament.

MSC World Europa 2 off Doha

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In addition to the MSC cruise ships, two Ponant vessels will also spend the FIFA World Cup alongside in Doha Port, as will the sixth ship, Golden Horizon of Star Clippers, one of the largest square-rigged sailing cruise ships in the world.

Golden Horizon which is set to host Croatian fans, while the other vessels are open to booking by any visitors to the FIFA World Cup.

The Grand Cruise Terminal is in the final stages of construction. It forms part of an ambitious project to increase the country’s international arrivals to more than six million tourists a year by 2030.

The Doha Grand Terminal will be able to handle 14,000 passengers and two mega ships simultaneously

The terminal building is set to be inaugurated at the naming ceremony of MSC Cruise’s newest ship MSC World Europa in November.

She is the largest cruise ship ever built for MSC Cruises, and will be the largest cruise ship ever to homeport in the Middle East when she repositions to Dubai after the FIFA World Cup.

The Grand Cruise Terminal will feature an aquarium and an art gallery, and is designed to simultaneously handle a complete passenger turnaround for two mega-size cruise ships.

Located in the heart of Doha, the new Grand Terminal is a stone’s throw away from the city’s most popular tourist attractions, such as the Corniche promenade, the Museum of Islamic Art, the National Museum of Qatar, Msheireb Downtown and the traditional market Souq Waqif.

The 22nd edition of the FIFA World Cup which will take place from November 20th to December 18th this year is the first to be hosted in the Middle East.

Qatar tourism officials have said they expect about 1.2 million fans to arrive during the competition.

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