Bellissima means perfection

Bellissima means perfection

The MSC Bellissima weighs 172 tons and accommodates over 5,000 passengers. (Supplied)
The MSC Bellissima weighs 172 tons and accommodates over 5,000 passengers. (Supplied)
Short Url

As we were approaching the Jeddah Islamic Port, we saw that gigantic floating city — the Bellissima cruise ship.

This was the first time I was going on a cruise ship with my four kids, Sara, Bader, Salma, and Alma.

From the first time I saw its advert, I was attracted to sign up for this cruise especially with its variety of offerings for the entire family. Once you enter the departure hall, you can feel the professional and friendly treatment by all parties, including the Cruise Saudi Co., the Coast Guards, Passport Control officials, and members of the Jeddah Islamic Port.

With COVID-19 travel restrictions still surrounding us, this initial feeling of comfort and pleasantness was needed before boarding the ship.

The Bellissima ship, which is part of the MSC cruises fleet, weighs 172 tons and accommodates over 5,000 passengers. At 315 meters in length and 64 meters in height, this beast is filled with a shopping mall, restaurants, a gymnasium, a theater, an aquapark, and swimming pools. It has the capacity to host entertainment events such as live bands, flamingo dancers, magicians, and acrobats.

It was exciting to watch world-class artists performing to entertain different age groups. You would normally need to travel to New York or London to watch such Broadway or Leicester Square-style performances, but Cruise Saudi and Bellissima made it convenient to enjoy watching these performances on board this floating city.

As part of its mission to add non-oil economic pillars for sustainable and environmentally friendly initiatives, the Public Investment Fund has created Cruise Saudi to open its doors for local and international tourists to enjoy the pristine coastline of the Red Sea.

Cruise Saudi is responsible for the port’s development at key Saudi destinations in coordination with governmental agencies to develop the cruise ecosystem offshore and onshore so that the Saudi coastline will become a premier global cruise destination.

Whenever we travel, locally or internationally, we always have certain complaints or negative observations. I must admit and to my pleasant surprise, this is the first time where I did not have any negative comment to make. Upon our arrival at Jeddah port, I felt compelled to call Fawaz Farooqi, Cruise Saudi CEO, to congratulate him and express the positive impression this pleasant trip had on me and my children.

In my opinion, the tourism sector is one of the key economic drivers under Vision 2030. After my recent experience, Cruise Saudi with its current and future activities for local and international tourists onboard different state-of-the-art ships — Bellissima, Scenic Eclipse, and others — will be a key success factor for the tourism sector in the Kingdom. 

Bellissima is an Italian word that means beautiful. According to Alma, my youngest daughter of 7, Bellissima means perfection. I second her view.

• Basil M.K. Al-Ghalayini is the chairman and CEO of BMG Financial Group.

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Arab News' point of view