MSC Splendida, the second in MSC Cruises’ luxurious “Fantasia” class of cruise ships, is scheduled to be christened in Barcelona on July 12 during a ceremony featuring several world-class performers.

Italian icon Sophia Loren welcomes MSC Splendida as the latest addition to the MSC Cruises’ fleet amidst lavish festivities. She continues the tradition of serving as the ship’s godmother, as she has for MSC Lirica, MSC Opera, MSC Musica, MSC Orchestra, MSC Poesia and MSC Fantasia. Like MSC Splendida, Loren represents the epitome of Italian elegance and style.

Jose Carreras, internationally-known Spanish operatic lyric tenor, lends his memorable voice to the celebration as well. Carreras was one of the “Three Tenors” (along with the Italian singer Luciano Pavarotti and the Spanish singer Plácido Domingo); they are credited with helping find a broader audience for opera. The recording of their first performance together, Carreras, Domingo, Pavarotti in Concert, won a Grammy Award in 1991.

Cruising the heart of the Mediterranean and the adjacent European Atlantic seaboard, MSC Splendida is set to embark on a series of inspiring itineraries to many of history’s most famous sites. Alexandria, Ashdod, Athens, Barcelona, Casablanca, Crete, Genoa, Madeira, Malta, Malaga, Naples, Olympia, Rhodes, Rome, Taormina, Tenerife, and Tunis are among the destinations.

Designed by De Joro Design Studio, MSC Splendida’s interiors will complement these famous sites of history with exuberant modern and classically refined Italian designs featuring many natural and traditional materials.