The wellness experience—which covers everything from nutrition and fitness classes to shore excursions—will become one of five passengers can choose when booking. It joins the Bella, Fantastica, Aurea and MSC Yacht Club experiences.
Via a pre-cruise questionnaire and a shipboard consultation with a Technogym-trained trainer, each passenger's wellness experience will be customized with shore excursions, gym classes and healthy food options that are specific to their goals.
MSC Cruises ceo Gianni Onorato noted the global wellness travel segment is projected to grow nearly 10% annually over the next five years. As consumers increasingly seek ways to combine being active and healthy on their vacation, MSC Cruises will satisfy that need by providing a completely personalized wellness experience at sea, he added.
To design the new experience, MSC Cruises worked for more than a year with the wellness, fitness, nutrition and technology experts at Technogym. It begins with a pre-cruise 'Aspiration Finder' online questionnaire that helps MSC understand its passengers' wellness motivations, such as the desire to look and feel better, improve sports performance or overall health and happiness. The results form a personalized 'Aspiration Map,' the basis for the individualized program.
Once on board, participants will have a one-on-one appointment with a trainer who will conduct an assessment consisting of a body scale analyzer and an in-depth consultation. In addition, participants will have a medical check-up with the shipoard doctor that includes a blood pressure test, electrocardiogram and lipid panel.
Wellness experience participants will get free Internet access to the MSC version of Technogym's mywellness app, which tracks their movement and gives them a daily movement target. It also includes information on personalized training programs and fitness class schedules. Using GPS and smartphone accelerometer functions, the app integrates indoor training using gym equipment with daily life activities and outdoor training.
Group fitness classes will be designed around Technogym’s ARKE equipment for core and bodyweight training, and there will be a Technogym spinning class. In addition, a range of trendy fitness classes such as Bella Barre and Hula Fit will be introduced along with standards like tai chi, Pilates, and yoga.
Shore activities exclusively for the wellness experience participants enable them to see the sights at ports while keeping active and giving the opportunity to socialize and meet like-minded people. Highlights include jogging around ancient Olympia, a bike tour of Copenhagen, hiking up Mount Fløyen in Norway, a 'triathlon' in Cozumel comprising kayaking, running and snorkeling or beach training in Rio de Janeiro.
The wellness experience places a strong emphasis on nutrition. Special menu options have been developed and the buffet will feature a wellness corner with dishes that match the needs of the different Aspiration Profiles. The main restaurant will also feature healthy options, and there will be a wellness room service breakfast menu. The MSC Aurea Spa bar will serve a new range of protein and energy drinks along with other wellness beverages.
Travelers booking the wellness experience will get a choice of staterooms on the upper decks and in the most desirable areas of the ship. They'll be provided a wellness mat and Technogym Wellness Bag, sports clothing and a towel. The staterooms will have a mini-bar stocked with sports drinks and a Fitness TV channel with videos created by the experts at Technogym. In addition, the laundry service for workout gear is included.
The wellness experience will be available on MSC Cruises ships starting in April 2017. The experience is currently open for booking on MSC Seaside with prices starting at $929 per person, including the cruise fare and the experience.