MSC Cruises enters final phase of work on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, private Bahamian island that will open in November 2019
With just one year to go until Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve will receive its first guests, MSC Cruises marked an important milestone in the island’s transformation with the planting of the first trees. With the Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserveproject, MSC Cruises is transforming a former industrial sand extraction site into a flourishing marine reserve and private island destination exclusively for MSC Cruises guests, that will exist in harmony with the local ecosystem.
With the landscaping work underway, over 75,000 native shrubs and plants will be planted with more than 60 types of indigenous Caribbean trees, grasses, flowers and shrubs to create a lush, tropical environment. Work will commence soon on over 100 environmentally friendly structures, which will include bars, restaurants and housing for employees and staff who will live on the island. Work will also shortly be underway on the lighthouse – set to become an iconic landmark of the island and a focal point of the evening’s entertainment for guests.
One of the island’s most distinguishing features will be a pier that allows the ship to dock alongside the island so that guests to simply walk on and off at their leisure throughout the day and evening. MSC Cruises has designed each aspect of the island to create an authentic, immersive Bahamian experience that will allow them to immerse themselves in this beautiful environment.
During the island’s clean-up, over 500 tons of historic industrial waste and scrap metal have been removed, with the final underwater debris clean-up about to begin. To create a solid foundation, over 500,000 tonnes of sand and soil have been moved and work has been carried out to shape the island itself.
A shallow water lagoon will be created in the centre of the island to provide a fun area for families to relax and while away the day. The island will feature eight world class beaches each with a different character, ambience. The beaches are formed from aragonite sand, which is distinctive not only by its stunning white colour but also it plays a key role in the growth of the coral reefs by maintaining the pH levels of the water.
Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve will open November 2019 with four MSC Cruises ships calling at the island on different days. More information about the guest experience will be revealed in the coming months.
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