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msc musica cruise ship photos
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MSC Musica Facts & Figures
Owner/Operator:MSC Cruises
Year built:2006
Builder:Aker Yards, St. Nazaire, France
Former names:-
Gross Tonnage:89,600
Length:293.8 m (963.9 ft)
Beam:32.2 m (105.6 ft)
Passengers (normal):2,550
Passengers (maximum):3,013
Crew:987
Service speed:23.0 kn
Sister Ships:MSC Orchestra, MSC Poesia, MSC Magnifica
MSC Musica Photo Gallery
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msc musica cruise ship photos
From the ShipParade Archives: MSC Lirica hits a high note
Amenities, decor, charges and services have changed since this article was written Text & Photos © 2006 Bart de Boer

You can book a cruise that is like a classical symphony. Or one that resembles a stomping disco tune. If we compare cruises with musical styles, you will find there are many genres afloat. With her contemporary, bold exterior and colorful interiors MSC Cruises' newest ship could well be representing a new repertoire on the Seven Seas. Named MSC Musica by Ela Aponte in a flashy ceremony at Aker Yard's St. Nazaire facility, the 89,600 ton vessel was designed with a European clientele in mind.

With hundreds of guests from the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and France on the quayside, the naming ceremony of MSC Musica proved to be a festive affair. As soon as French actor Gérard Depardieu eloquently recited a poem and the champagne bottle crashed on the vessel's hull, musicians came sailing down from the skies setting the tone of the rest of the evening.
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The next day MSC Musica left her place of birth St. Nazaire and set course for Venice, where she was named again on June 29, this time by MSC Cruises' fleet godmother Sophia Loren. A few days later she started the first of many sell-out weeklong Eastern Mediterranean cruises from Venice.

First impressions are very important in life. So it comes as no surprise that when laying eyes on MSC Musica's three deck high Atrium, you will most probably be a little overwhelmed. Hovering over the base of a backlit cascade is a glass stage where a female quartet pays homage to the vessel's name. Benvenuti a bordo!
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The use of glass, wood, black marble and colorful carpets makes the elliptical Atrium elegant yet upbeat - the style that prevails on the whole ship. With a huge Reception and Purser's Office Desk, plus the very popular Bar della Cascata, this is MSC Musica's pulsating heart. Enjoy a cappuccino here in the morning, standing at the bar - just like the Italians do! Come back to the Bar della Cascata (the Bar of the Waterfall) before dinner for a pre-dinner drink, as the Atrium slowly fills with people. Pretty soon the doors to the adjacent L'Oleandro Dining Room will open!
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Done in an attractive Art Nouveau style, the L'Oleandro Dining Room has a beige and brown color scheme. One of two main dining rooms, L'Oleandro is definitely huge but the designers have used all tricks in the book to make the room look less massive than it is. Dinner is served here in two seatings; prepare to fight for a table for two as there are just not many of those around.
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One deck up, in the Le Maxim's Dining Room, the true genius of MSC Musica's design team shows. Occupying the exact same area as the L'Oleandro on the deck below, the two dining rooms couldn't be more different. With its red and black color schema with high-backed chairs and velvet walls, Le Maxim's most resembles a fancy Paris nightclub. You would half expect Can Can dancers to appear during dinner! Again, the ingenious design belies the actual size of the 664-seat Le Maxim's. There are many tables for four and six and just a handful of tables for two. Still, you will be extremely comfortable in this elegant dining venue. You will be allocated to either dining room depending on your stateroom location. But rest assured: the same food is served in both dining rooms.
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Walking forward, we pass two small bar areas that are perfect to meet for a pre-dinner drink overlooking the activity in the nearby atrium. Shoppers can browse to their heart's content in the Via Montenapoleone, while the attractive circular Shore Excursion Bureau lures those wanting to explore the ports of call. On several MSC ships, shopping is fun as the cruise line has thoughtfully place a bar smack in the middle of the shopping precinct. On MSC Musica the beautiful Blue Velvet bar transforms into a full nightclub at night and incorporates four different shops. The shops actually form an integral part of the bar and judging by the nighttime crowd it works remarkably well.
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Last but not least on Brillante Deck is the vast Il Tucano Lounge, located forward. Done in purples and whites with in-your-face tropical murals and tucan-inspired lamps, this room serves as the secondary show lounge and has a large stage and dance floor. Anchored on the forward side of the room is a grand marble staircase leading up one deck to the Sanremo Casino.
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Inspired by Milan's famous opera house, the Teatro La Scala spans three decks and accommodates 1,240 guests in comfort. The entertainment on MSC Musica is very international and caters to guests of all ages. With no pillars to block the view from any of the seats, the La Scala Theatre would be the perfect seagoing showroom, if it was not for the apparent absence of any lighting in the aisles... Entertainment on board MSC ships focuses heavily on the non-verbal variant, meaning guests from all countries will enjoy the show no matter what. During our overnight stay on board, the production show featuring some colorful acrobatic acts was well received. Expect some late nights though: changes are the second seating show will not be over before 1:00 AM. But even at this late hour, you will be welcome in MSC Musica's casino. With oversized chandeliers and a warm, elegant look the Sanremo Casino is definitely a big step forward from the rather austere casinos on MSC's earlier ships.
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One of my favorite areas on MSC Musica is the circular lobby giving way to the Card Room, (token) Library, twin Art Galleries and ... an MSC first ... the Kaito Sushi Bar. Staffed by Indonesian staff dressed up as Japanese chefs, this is a quite inviting place with its minimalist look. In complete contrast, the elaborate Photo Gallery is a classic and a must-see (outside business hours) for any ship lover. For lovers of wine, the L'Enoteca wine bar serves up wine by the glass. Alas, L'Enoteca sadly misses any feeling of intimacy and is our least favorite room.

Located rather remotely all the way aft on Brillante Deck is the colorful Crystal Lounge. Done in bright oranges and greens, one wonders who came up with the name for this lounge. Crystal? Still, the nice bar and huge dance floor will draw people to this attractive nightclub that manages to exude a remarkable feeling of style despite its rather bold use of eclectic colors.
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Using wood paneling and rather dark and warm colors, MSC Musica's staterooms are decidedly different from the pastel-colored cabins on ships of the competition. With more balcony cabins than any other MSC ship, getting away from the hustle and bustle of MSC Musica's public rooms and open decks was never easier. With 1,275 staterooms housing up to 3,013 guests MSC Musica is a very large floating hotel. Still, in keeping with today's trends 80% of the staterooms have sea views and 65% have their own private balcony. The standard stateroom comes in red or green and has a flat screen television, safe, ample storage space, minibar and an efficient bathroom with shower.
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Despite the fact that there are really only five different cabin layouts, MSC Musica has no less than twelve stateroom categories. You will find the majority of staterooms on decks 8 - 12, most of which feature a rather small balcony which holds a table and two chairs - and nothing more. On deck 5 (Grazioso Deck) there are some generous outside cabins and up on decks 14 and 15 some of the best cabins are located. Forget all about five-room, three-bath apartments with grand pianos and butler service; on MSC Musica the best possible accommodation are 18 suites with private balcony on Cantata Deck. Featuring a generous sitting area, bathroom with tub and a larger balcony, these staterooms are usually sold out first. But whatever you decide, all of MSC Musica's staterooms are well-equipped, and home-like at the same time.
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On MSC Musica, the best seats in the house can be found up on Vivace Deck. Lined with floor to ceiling glasswalls, the Gli Archi Cafetaria takes the term "room with a view" to a whole new level. "Cafetaria" is really not a good term for this fine casual eatery. The seemingly endless expanse of glass, the gorgeous wooden flooring and in-house bar will make this a popular venue around the clock. However, I do feel that the traditional buffet line will inevitably lead to long waits and irritation at peak meal hours. A free-flow setup would have been much better here.
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Serving as a much-needed extension to the Gli Archi Restaurant by day, the Il Giardino Restaurant changes into an exclusive specialty dining venue at night. The designers have used the same look and feel as the Gli Archi here, but added some nice touches like beautiful frescos, trees and tiles to create a feeling of a European courtyard.

High up on the ship on deck 14 is MSC Musica's hi-tech disco. Named after the vessel's yard number, the Q32 Disco is the domain of the energetic set. It is one of the best discos at sea with comfortable seating and a HUGE dance floor with monitors everywhere. The light effects are awesome, but best of all are the enormous sliding glass doors that lead to the disco's balcony aft. Needless to say, the Q32 Disco was rocking during our pre-inaugural overnight party. Oh, what a night!
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We've saved the best for last. Even though MSC Musica's interiors are gorgeous and noteworthy, it is the Pool Deck that has attracted the most attention. Sailing in the sunny Mediterranean, MSC Cruises obviously wants you to make the most of the beautiful weather enroute. With two pools, four Jacuzzis and a Kid's Pool you may never want to venture back inside! We first stumble across a full-sized tennis court that seems hidden in the ship's funnel. One deck lower, there is Minigolf, Deck quoits and shuffle board for those that are looking for old-fashioned cruise activities. Then on to Capriccio Deck where you will find a tiny Kid's Pool and playground, both surprisingly small for a ship that is catering to families. By the way, using the advertised "Jogging Track" on deck 15 could well mean the start of a new career as athlete as you will have to jump over hundreds of deck chairs in order to complete the circuit.
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MSC Musica's "pièce de résistance" is the utterly beautiful pool landscape. The designers have succeeded in making the outdoor deck a destination in itself, with lots of space, gorgeous pools, a huge dance floor and stage, an outdoor bar and lots of outdoor seating. Oh, and we should not forget the huge movie screen that hangs suspended from the forward mast. We conclude our tour of MSC Musica with a visit to the oddly named Aloha Beauty Farm, located all the way forward on Vivace Deck. Sporting an Oriental theme with beautiful hard wooden floors and artwork, you will find everything here to remain (or get) in shape.
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After spending a short but sweet day and night on board, it is all too clear that MSC Cruises is on a winning streak with their gorgeous MSC Musica. Thanks to and ingenious layout and brilliant interior design by Studio de Jorio, MSC Musica really hits a high note. Splendido!
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