Costa Cruises, the Italian company of Carnival Corporation & plc, the world’s largest cruise company, celebrated the float-out ceremony of the new flagship Costa Toscana at the Meyer shipyard in Turku, Finland.
Costa Toscana, as her sister ship Costa Smeralda, is powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), the marine industry’s most advanced fuel technology currently available for reducing emissions, both at sea and during port calls.
Costa Group, which includes Costa Cruises, Germany-based AIDA Cruises and Costa Asia, was the first in the cruise industry worldwide to introduce this technology, having ordered five new LNG-powered ships, two of which, Costa Smeralda and AIDAnova, have already entered service. They are part of an expansion plan that includes seven new ships to be delivered to Costa Group by 2023, for a total investment of more than six billion euros.
During the float-out ceremony, Costa Toscana officially touched the sea for the first time, with the flooding of the basin where she has been built in recent months. She will enter service in December 2021, once the interior fittings have been completed.
Mario Zanetti, chief commercial officer of Costa Cruises and president of Costa Group Asia, commented: “Despite the current challenging scenario, Costa Group is confirming its investment in fleet expansion. We are confident in the recovery of our industry, and we are excited about the arrival of new ships like Costa Toscana, which embodies the elements we want to focus on for the future. First of all, it is an excellent and innovative ship, attractive for new customers, which is going to be fundamental, especially when people will be able to freely travel again and will have a great desire for holidays. Looking beyond the pandemic, the second element we are focusing on is to complete the transformation of our fleet and operations into a sustainable model. In addition to LNG technology, we are developing other innovative solutions, such as shore power and batteries, as we continue to work towards achieving zero emissions over time.”
“The float-out is always a very special occasion for us shipbuilders, as the ship is finally set to her natural environment. As this is also the start of the final stage of shipbuilding, all the exciting colors, venues and features will start taking their final form. In the coming months she will be finalized at the pier and then tested and commissioned in the autumn for delivery,” CEO of Meyer Turku, Tim Meyer, said.
Costa Toscana has been designed to be a traveling “smart city,” where sustainable solutions and circular economy concepts are applied to reduce environmental impact. Thanks to the use of LNG, it will be possible to virtually eliminate emissions of sulfur dioxide (zero emissions) and particulate matter into the atmosphere (95-100% reduction), while also significantly lowering emissions of nitrogen oxides (direct reduction of 85%) and CO2 (up to 20%). On board, special desalinisation plants will process seawater directly to meet daily water supply requirements, and energy consumption will be reduced to a minimum thanks to an intelligent energy efficiency system. In addition, 100% separate collection and recycling of materials such as plastic, paper, glass and aluminum will be carried out on board, as part of an integrated approach aimed at supporting circular economy projects.
The new flagship is a tribute to Tuscany, the result of an extraordinarily creative project, curated by Adam D. Tihany, designed to enhance and bring to life in a single location reflecting the best of this wonderful Italian region, which gives its name to the ship, its decks and main public areas.
Tihany has worked with an international pool of prestigious architectural firms – Dordoni Architetti, Jeffrey Beers International and Partner Ship Design – to design the different areas of the ship. All the furnishings, lighting, fabrics and accessories are made in Italy, whether standard produced or designed specifically for the new flagship by 15 partners who are highly representative of Italian excellence.
The facilities on board will fit perfectly into this extraordinary setting: from the Solemio Spa to the areas dedicated to entertainment; from the themed bars, in collaboration with major Italian brands, to the 16 restaurants and areas dedicated to the “food experience,” including the restaurant dedicated to families with children, and the LAB Restaurant, where you can try your cooking skills under the guidance of Costa’s chefs.
The “heart” of the new flagship will be the “Colosseo,” a space in the centre of the ship spread over three decks, dedicated to the best shows. The big screens, positioned both on the walls and on the dome, offer the possibility of creating a different story in every port of call and in every moment of the holiday.
Also not to be missed is the large stairway on three decks facing astern: the ideal place for entertaining guests, both young and old, with an open-air balcony on the top deck featuring a crystal floor that lets you experience the thrill of “flying” over the sea.
To relax and enjoy the sun there will be four swimming pools, one of which will be indoors with salt water, with a new beach club, which will recreate the atmosphere of a real bathing establishment.
Comfortable and elegant, the more than 2,600 cabins on board perfectly reflect Italian style and taste. The “Sea Terrace” cabins will offer a beautiful veranda where you can have breakfast, sip an aperitif or simply enjoy the view.
Costa Toscana will make its debut in Brazil in the 2021-22 season. In particular, the inaugural New Year’s Eve cruise will depart from Santos on Dec. 26, 2021, with a week-long itinerary visiting Salvador and Ilhéus, and returning to Santos on Jan. 2, 2022. From Jan. 2 to April 10, 2022, Costa Toscana will offer another 15 cruises with the same itinerary, embarking in Santos and Salvador. The 15 cruises also include the Carnival and Easter departures, which will be the ship’s last cruise before the Brazil-Italy crossing, departing from Santos on April 17, 2022.
Reference: Costa Cruises / prnewswire.com
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