HomeCruise NewsMSC World Europa in Barcelona

MSC World Europa in Barcelona

Alana Byrne and Erica Oglesby hosted Irish travel agents and ITTN’s Shane Cullen onboard the luxurious cruise ship, World Europa as she docked in sunny Spain’s Barcelona.

She launched in 2022 and is a stunning ship offering a significant step up in terms of “wow factor”. She is MSC Cruises’ first World Class series ship with a new look aft (back of the ship for those unfamiliar with sailing terminology). 

Described as “an ultramodern urban metropolis at sea”, it exceeded my expectations. The size of the ship allows for completely distinct districts, the lively promenade with shops and bars, a tranquil adults-only zen district and a separate family district with ten new kids’ facilities. 

A Family Affair

MSC Cruises is for all ages with 5 kids clubs catering for children from 0 up to 17 years of age:

  • Baby Club for toddlers up to 3 years, with qualified crew members. 
  • Mini Club and Juniors Club (3 – 11 years) 
  • Young Club and Teen Club (12 – 17 years) including the TEENS LAB, an immersive, tech-filled, modern room just for teens.
  • Teenagers aged from 15 to 17 years old can look forward to Teen Club activities range from sports and competitions, dance contests and social network games to Wii, Xbox and PS5 tournaments.

MSC Cruises continues her partnership with LEGO onboard (I could leave my wife in the LEGO room all day and she’d be happy). There are family discos as well as games and activities during the day.

A family sundeck offers the littlest ones a chance to enjoy a day at sea with the whole family, while an Aquapark with integrated virtual reality technology will entertain both children and every adult’s inner child in equal measure.

A glimpse of what’s on offer during the tour sees the investment and design in making sure every member of the family is going to have a ball. Forget the saying, “happy wife, happy life”, it really is, “happy kids, happy parents”.

World Promenade

World Europa still has the winding promenade that MSC ships offer. It is the heart of this ship with restaurants, bars and ships all bustling with life and energy.

The outdoor promenade “World Promenade”, stretches 104 meters with eateries and high-end shops lining either side. In a departure from other MSC ship designs, the promenade features inward-facing cabins overlooking this space. In the centre, a silver spiral winds from the top deck to the ground – this is the Venom Drop @ The Spiral which offers thrill-seekers an 11-deck dry slide, the longest at sea. And no, I wasn’t brave enough or rather I thought it best to focus on the photos.

The promenade ends in stunning, panoramic views of the sea and with various bars and eateries to choose from, this is an ideal spot to chill and soak up the view. While we didn’t dine in La Pescaderia (seafood restaurant), it offers al fresco seating and the setting and decor were idyllic.

Dining Onboard World Europa 

World Europa features 13 dining venues, including an incredible six specialty restaurants. This includes the Chef’s Garden Kitchen of Michelin-starred, Swedish chef, Chef Niklas Ekstedt. This restaurant offers a menu focused on natural ingredients and a farm-to-ocean ethos. Ekstedt combines traditional Nordic cooking and preserving techniques with astonishingly creative combinations of rigorously fresh seasonal ingredients that are grown onboard (Can’t get fresher than that).

Guests also have the opportunity to discover three ample restaurant buffets on board, each offering their distinct ambience, including an eatery open 24/7. These include:

  • La Pescaderia – traditional seafood grill with alfresco dining at the aft of the ship
  • Butcher’s Cut – classic American-style steakhouse
  • Kaito Teppanyaki – Asian-inspired grill and Sushi bar
  • HOLA! Tacos & Cantina – Latin American street food-inspired cuisine
  • Les Dunes Restaurant
  • Pizza & Burger
  • La Foglia Restaurant
  • Esagono / Hexagon Restaurant
  • La Brasserie Buffet

Our group enjoyed lunch in Main Dining, one of the three restaurant buffets on board. I went for steak and despite some completely unfounded reservations about ordering a steak on a lunch menu onboard any cruise ship, this was excellent, tender and very tasty.

Erica and Alana explained that MSC has a dining at sea package which offers three speciality dining experiences for a set price (typically under €100 pp) which is very good value, especially if you book in advance.

Masters of the Sea

Masters of the Sea is a favourite of mine. While not visiting (and certainly not drinking at every bar onboard), it stood out in terms of decor and offering. It has charm and character and, uniquely, offers several craft beers which are brewed onboard the ship in the Oceanic Craft Brewery. While more of a Pina Colada man myself, I’d happily enjoy nestling into a booth and relaxing for the evening.

  • Elixir – Mixology Bar with signature cocktails
  • Botanic Garden Bar
  • The Lanai Bar
  • Surfer’s Bar
  • The Gin Project
  • Fizz – Champagne Bar
  • TV Studio & Bar
  • The Box Bar
  • Dolce Vita Bar
  • Zen Pool Bar

Interestingly, they roast their coffee beans onboard so the coffee is superb! For daytime drinks, check out:

  • Jean Philippe Chocolate & Café
  • Zest Juice Bar
  • Raj Polo Tea House
  • Coffee Emporium

Activities Onboard World Europa

There’s something for everyone on board MSC World Europa, from the largest waterpark in theirfleet, to bumper cars, and surprise street performances. The ship also has 7 swimming pools including one with a sliding roof so there’s always space to relax by the water and pool deck.

Guests can also expect the same high-quality, full-scale production theatre shows that they have come to expect from MSC Cruises, as well as immersive performance venues.

They have really thought of everything, there’s even a barber onboard!

Shane Cullen
Shane Cullen
Shane Cullen has been managing director of a media production studio for nearly 20 years working on projects for a global clientele. He has worked in the travel industry for over a decade and as a travel journalist since 2015. He is passionate about travel, film & photography. He also has a keen interest in emerging technology.

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