Explora Journeys Celebrates Major Milestone

Explora Journeys EXPLORA II AFT


EXPLORA I, currently also under construction, and EXPLORA II set to welcome guests in 2023 and 2024, respectivelyCompany on track to fulfil its commitment to launch four luxury ships by 2026, one per year

Geneva, Switzerland – 6 October 2021 – Explora Journeys, the newly-launched luxury brand of the MSC Group, today marked another major important milestone in its coming-to-market phase with the steel cutting of its second ship, EXPLORA II, in Italy.
Construction today started on the second vessel in Explora Journeys’ fleet of luxury ships and is due to welcome its first guests in Spring 2024.

This follows the launch of the Explora Journeys brand just three months ago and the beginning of its first ship, EXPLORA I, being built for a May 2023 launch.
Two additional new ships will join the fleet in 2025 and 2026 as a demonstration of MSC Group’s commitment to establish the Explora Journeys brand created for the next generation of discerning luxury travelers.

Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman of MSC Group’s Cruise Division, said, “The start of Explora Journeys’ second ship signals our firm commitment to our tourism partners for the coming-to-market of our new luxury brand with a significant financial investment in a fleet of innovative, elegant ships, that will bring together our vision and purpose to create an ocean state of mind like no other.

Explora Journeys EXPLORA II STEEL CUTTING credit Ivan Sarfatti
Explora Journeys EXPLORA II STEEL CUTTING credit Ivan Sarfatti

Given our belief in this brand to create a new category in luxury, lifestyle travel, we will continue to invest in its expansion to attract the growing number and aspirations of the next generation of discerning luxury travelers.”

All four Explora Journeys ships will be built by ship builders Fincantieri in Italy and a traditional maritime ceremony took place today at its Castellammare di Stabia yard near Naples for the first steel to be cut for the second vessel.

The event was attended by key executives including Pierfrancesco Vago; Michael Ungerer, CEO Explora Journeys; and Luigi Matarazzo, General Manager Merchant Ships Division, Fincantieri.

Michael Ungerer, CEO Explora Journeys, added, “We are greatly encouraged by the tremendous enthusiasm and support we have received so far from the travel advisor community who have placed their trust in Explora Journeys since our launch in June and for their overwhelming response to our exclusive `By Appointment’ service and innovative commercial terms.
Explora Journeys has also been awarded ‘preferred’ status with a number of leading travel agency groups,an honor not normally bestowed on a brand prior to its coming into service, that demonstrates an unprecedented recognition from the luxury travel industry and which reinforces our commitment to, and confidence in, our robust B2B2C strategy.”

EXPLORA II will feature the same innovative design as EXPLORA I, offering 461 oceanfront suites which have some of the largest lead-in categories, all with private terraces and generous outdoor space.

The ships will utilize the latest in environmental-supporting technologies, while being ready to adapt to alternative energy solutions as they become available. The design incorporates provision for battery storage to allow future hybrid power generation, as well as the latest selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology, enabling a reduction of nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions by 90 percent. Built with ship-to-shore power capabilities to avoid CO2 emissions while at berth and powered by marine gas oil, this is in line with the Cruise Division of MSC Group’s recently announced pledge to achieve net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in its cruise marine operation by 2050.

Explora Journeys created an industry first `By Appointment` service, one of many bold initiatives where travel advisors can set up an appointment with a customer experience representative to discuss and place a waitlist on a specific suite for one or more of the eight inaugural journeys during EXPLORA I’s first year, including the vessel’s maiden voyage.

This underpins Explora Journeys’ guest-centric approach with the service being maintained indefinitely, to easily provide the option for travel advisors to schedule an appointment to discuss and make a waitlist reservation for their valued clients, which can then be converted to a deposited reservation at a later date. Waitlist options via the `By Appointment` service for EXPLORA II will be available from Spring 2022.

About Explora Journeys Explora Journeys is redefining ocean travel for a new generation of discerning travelers. With the first of four luxury ships scheduled to set sail in 2023, remarkable itineraries will blend renowned destinations with lesser-traveled ports for a journey that celebrates discovery. Its ships equipped with the latest in environmental-supporting and marine technologies, Explora Journeys will introduce a unique all-inclusive luxury travel experience for those who want to explore differently.

Whether on board or ashore, guests will reconnect with what matters most—themselves, their loved ones, and the world around them. With 461 oceanfront suites, every guest will enjoy sweeping sea views and a private terrace, while being spoilt for choice with nine distinct culinary experiences, four pools, private cabanas, spa, and redefined entertainment.

To learn more about Explora Journeys, visit Explora Journeys.com or follow us on InstagramTwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.

See more from MSC Cruises here.

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