Following a major US$28.1 million refurbishment, Costa Cruises' 53,000-ton Costa Classica will join the Costa neoCollection as Costa neoClassica Dec. 18, 2014.

Costa neoClassica - new outside look

With the Costa neoRomantica and Costa neoRiviera, the refurbished ship will offer itineraries in what Costa calls the "slow cruise" style, "featuring cruises to unique destinations with natural and cultural attractions."

The neoClassica's renovation began at San Giorgio del Porto yards in Genoa, Italy, Nov. 8, and involved about 600 technicians and 400 crewmembers. Extensive work included the hull, engine section and hotel areas.

Public areas and the 654 cabins were totally renovated with new interiors done by Partner Ship Design.

In their cabins, guests can taste espresso thanks to a personal Illy brand coffee pod machine, and Elemis beauty products and amenities are provided as well.

Suite balconies received new furniture.

The Restaurant Tivoli has tables for two and four guests to guarantee flexible dining options, including a sea-day brunch.

The Al Fresco café is a green retreat at sea with a partial roof decorated with trees that creates an open-air space with an outdoor area like a balcony on the sea. There is also the Foyer Bar, serving Ferrari sparkling wines, and at the Dolce Amore Bar guests can enjoy coffee specialties during the day and order pizza in the evening.

The spa was refurbished with a new TRX area for Total Body Resistance Exercises and training classes.