The thirteenth ship in the Costa fleet, the Costa Luminosa, was delivered yesterday by Fincantieri at the Marghera (Venice) shipyard. Built as the most exclusive and innovative ship in the Costa fleet, the Costa Luminosa (92,700-tons; 2,828 dbl occ) is the first in a new class of ships for Costa and is the company’s flagship. She features the largest percentage of balcony cabins on a Costa ship (772 of 1,130 total). The ship is a true symbol of “Made in Italy” – her construction required the professional expertise of 3,000 workers from Fincantieri and roughly 500 linked industry companies, the majority of which are Italian, for a total investment of 450 million Euros.
The Costa Luminosa is the first of three new ships to be delivered by Fincantieri to the Italian company in less than one year. The Costa Pacifica (114,500 tons; 3,000 dbl occ) is currently being completed at the Genova Sestri Ponente shipyard and will be delivered on May 29. The Costa Deliziosa, a sister ship of the Costa Luminosa, is also under construction at the Marghera shipyard, and will be delivered at the end of January 2010. Costa’s fleet expansion plan, the biggest in the world, includes two additional new ships to be delivered by 2012. These five new ships represent a 50% capacity increase of the Costa fleet, Europe’s largest. In 2012, the fleet will consist of 17 vessels with a total capacity of 46,400 passengers.
The Costa Luminosa is the first ship in Italy and one of the first in the world to be fitted for “cold ironing.” This special system allows ships berthed at a dock to receive power from shore without having to keep their engines running to feed the onboard generators.
The style of the interiors, designed by the ingenious architect and interior designer Joseph Farcus, is inspired by the concept of light in all its forms. The Costa Luminosa features contemporary design trends in a distinctive avant-garde style, including interiors decorated with premium materials. These include 20 different types of marble, wood, mother-of-pearl, and granite. It also features 120 Murano glass lamps and chandeliers and the use of LED lights. The ship boasts a sculpture commissioned by renowned artist Fernando Botero, entitled “Reclining Woman 2004,” which will be on display in the ship’s Supernova atrium. Beyond Botero, guests will find 288 original works of art and more than 4,700 reproductions throughout the ship.
There are numerous fun and entertaining activities for guests to participate in onboard, beginning with a new 4D cinema where sight, sound, touch and scent come together to form a multisensory experience. This Costa “first” also features seats that roll in tandem with action as it unfolds onscreen. Costa is also bringing Sony PlayStation onboard with exclusive dedicated areas equipped with PS3 consoles and the latest-generation videogames as well as on-demand PS3 games available in cabins. A roller skating track on one of the ship’s top decks will allow guests to try roller skating with strap-and-go “Skorpion” skates that attach to one’s shoes. For sports aficionados, an 18-hole golf simulator lets guests “hit the links at sea” on 37 virtual courses, while a putting green on one of the ship’s top decks offers a real-life golf experience—both are Costa firsts. For race car fans, the ship features a Grand Prix race car driving simulator, one of the most accurate representations of Formula One racing available.
Spa-goers will enjoy Costa’s renowned Samsara Spa which features special spa cabins (52 cabins and 4 suites), with direct access to the spa via private elevator and stairway. This spectacular wellness haven will also feature a new Kinesis circuit by Technogym, a unique system based on natural movements through a patented system of pulleys for resistance training. The ship will also feature a specialty restaurant with menus created by the revered Ettore Bocchia, Executive Chef at the Michelin-star restaurant Mistral at the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni in Bellagio, Italy. His exceptional creations explore the relationship of how temperature and the molecular structure of food and taste comes together, creating rich cuisine that feels light.
The Costa Luminosa will be christened together with the Costa Pacifica on June 5 in the Port of Genoa. This is the first time that two ships built by the same ship yard for one company and brand will be christened in the same place at the same time. Costa Cruises has applied to Guinness World Records for verification of the extraordinary event, which will include an incredible overture with the exhibition of the “Frecce Tricolori” Italian national acrobatic team. The show created for this exceptional event, “Italian Portrait in Music and Light,” will pay tribute to the all-Italian ability for making dreams come true. Starting from the inspirational theme of the ships – music for the Costa Pacifica and light for the Costa Luminosa – the show will be a journey through the best Italian talents and artists known around the world. This will include musical and artistic performances by some of the most important figures in the Italian and international scene, accompanied by maestro Mauro Pagani, a renowned musician with thirty years of experience who composed the soundtrack for the Costa Pacifica, the “ship of music.” The evening will end with a show involving the entire city with lights, music and fireworks.
The Costa Luminosa’s first vernissage cruise departs from Venice on May 5, 2009. This new 10-night itinerary in the Eastern Mediterranean will include two days in Istanbul and daily calls to Bari, Olympia (Greece), Rhodes (Greece), Izmir (Turkey), Mykonos (Greece) and Athens (Greece). This will be followed by mini cruises in the Eastern Mediterranean, departing from Venice on May 15, and a second vernissage cruise on May 19. The Costa Luminosa will then be deployed in Northern Europe with a spectacular maiden voyage from Civitavecchia to Amsterdam, which also includes the christening ceremony. During the summer of 2009 the ship will offer fantastic 11 and 14-night cruises to the Baltic capitals, the Norwegian fjords and the North Cape. During the 2009-2010 winter season the ship will operate in Dubai, offering 7-night cruises from Dubai with stops in other UAE countries.