FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (Aug. 3, 2009) — On July 15, 2009, MSC Splendida, the new flagship of the MSC Cruisesâ€™ fleet, entered the harbor of La Valletta, Malta for its maiden call. To mark the maiden call as well as celebrate the 10th anniversary of MSC Cruisesâ€™ calling at Malta on a regular basis, Maltapost plcâ€™s Philatelic Bureau issued a special second set of four stamps in the Maritime series entitled â€œCruise Liners.â€
This collection follows the first set, which was issued in November 2008 and which featured, among others, MSC Musica. The first day cover of the new set of stamps will have the date of MSC Splendidaâ€™s maiden call at Malta. MSC Splendida, christened July 12 in Barcelona, will call at La Valletta (Malta) 21 times in 2009 and 39 times in 2010, during her summer and winter itineraries throughout the Mediterranean.
MSC Splendidaâ€™s maiden call to Malta was attended by President of Malta George Abela; Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi; Opposition Leader Joseph Muscat; Archbishop, Monsignor Pawl Cremona; and Austin Gatt, Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Communications. They were among the distinguished guests welcomed on board by MSC Splendidaâ€™s Captain Giuliano Bossi; MSCâ€™s Managing Director Domenico Pellegrino; Alfredo Spadon, MSCâ€™s commercial manager emerging markets; and Norman Hamilton, Hamilton Travel, exclusive general sales agent of MSC Cruises in Malta. For more information about MSC Cruises, visit www.MSCCruisesUSA.com or a local travel professional.