Costa Cruises announces big changes intended to further increase the company’s presence in Sardinia and Sicily

Artist impression of the new dual-fuel LNG ship Costa Smeralda (Courtesy of Costa Cruises)The first concerns Costa Smeralda, the new flagship currently nearing completion at the Meyer shipyard in Turku, Finland. During the 2020 summer season, from May 28 to September 24, Costa Smeralda will be in Cagliari every Thursday, from 7.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m., making a total of 18 calls.

The one-week itinerary will include Savona (Saturday), Marseilles (Sunday), Barcelona (Monday), Palma de Mallorca (Tuesday), Cagliari (Thursday) and Civitavecchia (Friday).

From October 1, 2020 to April 8, 2021, it will be Palermo’s turn to welcome Costa Smeralda every Thursday, from 7.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m., for a total of 28 calls. The itinerary will remain unchanged, with Palermo replacing Cagliari.

In addition to Costa Smeralda, Costa Diadema will also be calling at Palermo every Tuesday from April to the end of September 2020, while during the winter of 2020/21, Costa Fortuna will arrive every Friday. Costa’s calls in Palermo from January 2020 to April 2021 will therefore increase to 77 in total.

The second development relates instead to Costa Pacifica. Following the changes made to the Costa Smeralda summer cruises, Costa Pacifica will stop off in Catania, instead of Cagliari, every Wednesday from June 3, 2020 to November 2020, with the following itinerary: Genoa, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Malta, Catania and Civitavecchia. Thanks to this new development, Costa’s stopovers in Catania will increase to 36 during 2020.

“Sicily and Sardinia are two regions where the demand for Costa cruises is growing all the time. The changes we have made to the 2020/21 itineraries will allow our Sicilian and Sardinian customers to leave comfortably from a port near home to experience the truly innovative product offered by Costa Smeralda, which represents the best of Italian cruising hospitality. Furthermore, for guests embarking onboard Costa Smeralda in other ports, Cagliari and Palermo are two extremely attractive destinations that will further enrich their holiday experience” – says Neil Palomba, President of Costa Cruises.

The presence of Costa Smeralda will further develop Costa’s economic impact on Cagliari and Palermo. A study conducted by Deloitte & Touche and the University of Genoa, in fact calculated that every Costa guest generates direct expenditure of 74.60 euros in every European port visited by Costa ships. This development will be sustainable as Costa Smeralda will be the first Costa ship to be fueled by liquefied natural gas, the “cleanest” fossil fuel in the world.

Like her sister ship Costa Toscana due for delivery in 2021, Costa Smeralda will be powered both in port and at sea by LNG, the world’s cleanest burning fossil fuel, thereby minimizing environmental impact. The introduction of LNG-fueling enables the virtual total elimination of sulfur dioxide emissions and particulate matter.

Costa Smeralda will be a showcase for and a tribute to the very best of Italy. All her decks and public areas are named after – and designed based on – iconic Italian places. The food&wine offerings on board will feature the finest Italian culinary traditions, with the collaboration of prestigious partner suppliers. The ship will have 11 different restaurants (including one specifically conceived for casual family dining), 19 bars, a splendid spa area with 16 treatment rooms, an onboard waterpark with waterslides, 4 pools and a dedicated facility where kids can hang out and make new friends their age. Costa Smeralda will also have her very own museum: the CoDe – Costa Design Collection Museum, displaying the excellence of Italian design.

Costa Cruises will inform by October 18 travel agencies and guests booked on Costa Smeralda and Costa Pacifica departures affected by the introduction of the new ports of Cagliari, Palermo and Catania.

(Costa Cruises)