The vessel, which has not been named, will be taken from the line’s existing fleet and undergo a full refurbishment in dry dock before it begins sailing.
Antonio Paradiso, managing director UK and Ireland, said the move showed MSC’s “continued commitment" to the region.
“We have had great success this year sailing MSC Magnifica from Southampton and we are looking to build on this with a full commitment from the UK market,” he said.
MSC Bellissima launches in Southampton in less than 100 days with the 5,686-passenger vessel set to be the largest ever named in the UK.
The second ship in MSC’s Meraviglia class, Bellissima will spend its inaugural season in the Mediterranean before moving to the Middle East for winter 2019-2020.
Yesterday MSC revealed plans to target new-to-cruise football fans with a deal to become Chelsea’s global cruise partner.
The multi-million pound partnership, which will run from January until June 2021, includes pitchside advertising at the London side’s home ground Stamford Bridge, digital marketing featuring Chelsea players and offering travel agent partners hospitality experiences at matches.