Variety Steps Up to Get MSC Crew Home to Cuba

Cuba Crew from MSC Aboard the Variety Panorama

Variety Cruises has stepped up, using its 50-guest Variety Panorama to help repatriate 19 Cuban crew members from the MSC Preziosa, according to a statement.

Variety said it responded to call for assistance and made a 14-day diversion to bring the crew members home.

Having completed a winter season of cruising off the coast of Costa Rica and Panama, the Panorama was empty other than for the crew and en route to Europe for the summer.

Having stopped to bunker fuel in Barbados prior to crossing the Atlantic, she berthed near the MSC Preziosa. A request followed from the Cuban government, and the Panorama’s Captain, Vasilis Mazarakis, agreed to repatriate the Cuban crew members to Havana.

Captain Mazarakis

The voyage took seven days, with the ship then cruising back to Barbados for another week to refuel prior to her crossing.

Health declarations were provided by the Captain of MSC Preziosa and the Barbadian medical authorities, and the new addition of guests were thermo-scanned prior to boarding and on every subsequent day of the journey.

Upon disembarking his charges on April 4 in Havana, Captain Mazarakis said: “During these difficult times we are facing, it is important to help each other. Knowing that we were helping fellow seafarers by getting them back to their families makes us all proud. We wish and hope that all stranded crew and passengers alike manage to get home to their loved ones and that the world will return to normal soon.’”

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