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Porthole Cruise Magazine - January 23, 2020
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MSC Cruises Breaks Ground on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve

MSC Cruises Breaks Ground on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve

Cruise News – Jan. 18, 2017

MSC Cruises has officially broken ground on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, an island south of Bimini in the Bahamas that is set to become an exclusive call for MSC Cruises guests as of November 2018.

The Right Honorable Perry Gladstone Christie, Prime Minister of the Bahamas, joined Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ Executive Chairman, at the official groundbreaking ceremony along with other Bahamian ministers and government officials. This milestone marked the official commencement of the work that will return this former industrial sand extraction site back to its original pristine state.

The development of the Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve is part of MSC Cruises’ $10.2 billion investment plan, which includes the building of up to 11 next-generation smart ships coming into service between 2017 and 2026. The first phase of development of the marine reserve will now begin as the island is cleared of existing industrial infrastructure so it can be turned again into a pristine marine reserve.

“Working in partnership with the government of the Bahamas, our aim is to turn an industrial wasteland into a thriving environment for man and nature alike, bringing the island and its surrounding waters back to their original stat,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman of MSC Cruises. “A purpose-built berth and pier will allow our cruise ships to dock directly at Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve. Thus the island will de facto become an extension of the ship.”

“Located merely 65 miles east of Miami, Florida, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve has 11,400 feet of beautiful coastline and crystal-blue waters teaming with unique marine life,” added Gianluca Suprani, head of global port development and shoreside activities at MSC Cruises. “The island has some of the finest aragonite sands in the world and once the work is completed, its surrounding waters will be home again to beautiful corals and rich aquatic life.”

A comprehensive landscaping plan will see more than 80 indigenous Caribbean trees, grasses, flowers, and shrubs, planted on the island, returning to their lush natural habitat.

MSC Cruises ships operating in the Caribbean, including the upcoming MSC Seaside, will call on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve regularly on itineraries from November 2018 onward.


Photo: MSC Cruises


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