Beauty at Sea

Katrina Smith on 06 March 2019

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On 3rd March I was very lucky to be invited to the launch weekend of the new MSC Bellissima in Southampton. Bellissima is the second Meraviglia class ship, the first being MSC Meraviglia.

Possibly my favourite part of the ship (although I have several favourites to be fair) is the atrium, which is a real “wow”. Here you find the famous Swarovski crystal staircases. There are 640 crystals per step. They are quite simply beautiful.

Next is the LED screen ceiling above the promenade. It is the longest LED screen at sea. The screen changes images every 30 seconds and in the evening turns into a light and sound show. The promenade incorporates speciality restaurants, shops and lounges. I tried the teppanyaki restaurant and the food was fabulous, there is also a steak restaurant – The Butchers Cut and Hola! Tapas Bar and a sushi bar, as well as a macaroon shop and an ice cream parlour (you must try the coconut ice cream) and creperie, and the amazing chocolate factory – The Jean-Phillipe Chocolat and Café. Here you can watch chocolatiers make their chocolate. The chocolate was divine.

I was very surprised by the Sports Zone where there was an indoor basketball court, as well as a full-size bowling alley and two Formula 1 simulators. There is also a 4D theatre and virtual reality games. This is a great area for all ages, as is the Arizona Waterpark which has three different waterslides. Located close to the Children’s Clubs. There is a Baby Club, Junior Club and Teen Club all are well equipped to keep children occupied and happy.

For the adults there is the Aurea Spa which offers everything from vinotherapy treatments to 38 different facials, alongside a hair salon, nail spa and huge gym.

I was given a balcony cabin, which was a good size with king size bed and large sofa, which converts into a bed. The bed was really comfortable. There was an interactive TV, telephone, safe, minibar and hairdryer. The bathroom was a very good size and had a good size shower. If you are looking for something a little bit special, then the MSC Yacht Club could be for you. It has the feel of a private club area with exclusive cabins with private facilities and butler service. There is also an exclusive Yacht Club bar and restaurant.

There are 45 accessible cabins for people with accessibility problems. These are large cabins, with wider doors, a ramped threshold and lower vanity units in the lounge area. The telephone is amplified, and the TV has captions. The bathrooms have a roll-in shower, a fold-down shower bench, grab rails, lower sinks and a raised toilet.

This is a great ship, especially for families. The facilities are amazing, the food great and the atmosphere fantastic. Give it a try yourself – for more information just give me a call on 01403 887190.

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