MSC Exercises Option for Fourth Ship

MSC Cruises has exercised its option for a fourth Musica-class Panamax ship, MSC Magnifica, for delivery in 2010. The 89,600-ton, 2,500-passenger vessel will cost over $500 million to build and bump up the line's fleet tally to 12 ships within the next three years. MSC Cruises' CEO Pierfrancesco Vago said the announcement showed MSC's commitment to becoming a dominant force in the cruise industry. Since 2003, MSC has taken delivery of one vessel per year. MSC Magnifica will join sister ships MSC Musica, already in operation, MSC Orchestra, set to debut this May and MSC Poesia, slated to arrive next year. MSC will also take delivery of two post-Panamax ships, MSC Fantasia and MSC Serenata, to be delivered in 2008 and 2009, respectively.

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