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Why we love this cruise line
Costa Cruises was initially founded in 1854 and originally only operated cargo ships. Passenger services began in 1947 and it was decided that the entire fleet would be converted to passenger ships. The company has grown steadily over the years, with its fleet currently consisting of 14 ships, and is one of the main generators of income for the Carnival Corporation, which acquired the company in 2000. One of the cruise line’s most attractive aspects is the casual and chic Italian style of cruising that it actively promotes. All of the ships are lavishly themed and some go one step further by having unique touches throughout, such as Costa Fascinosa, which pays homage to many cinematic legends and legendary movies, and Costa Fortuna, whose theming and décor acknowledges many classic cruise liners of yesteryear.
Onboard you will find outstanding facilities that cater for all ages and tastes. Dine in exquisite restaurants with delicious international cuisine. Visit the bars and lounges to sample the lively nightlife. Take a seat at the theater and watch a world-class entertainment show, from Broadway-style musicals to enchanting ballet performances. Indulge in some retail therapy with a trip to the shopping center and pay a visit to the spa to enjoy some relaxing treatments. Costa ships are especially family-friendly, with each providing an abundance of facilities and activity programmes for youngsters.
What we love the most about Costa Cruises is that it offers the classic Italian style of cruising in decidedly modern and contemporary ships that have been thoughtfully designed and stylishly decorated. Onboard every Costa ship you will experience the famous Italian hospitality, charm and high quality of service, all while exploring a broad range of some of the world’s most exciting destinations.
When you’re not exploring the destinations on your itinerary, take some time to check out all the onboard activities. Once the sun comes out, head to the pool deck and have a long soak in the pool or watch a movie on the giant screen. Some ships also have a fun and thrilling water slide that is three storeys in height and twists and turns its way down to the bottom. Over at the sports court you can get a team together and have a game of basketball, volleyball, soccer or tennis, whether it’s a friendly match or a competitive tournament.
You will find many things to do indoors, such as the amazing 4D Cinema, where you don 3D glasses and watch movies with special effects such as moving seats that make you feel like you are part of the movie. Be sure to give the Grand Prix Simulator a try. Hop in and see what it feels like to race a Formula 1 car around some of the world’s most famous race tracks. Stop by the Virtual World video arcade where you can play on classic arcade games as well the latest Playstation 3 releases. For a quieter time, head to the library and check out a good book to read or stop by the card room and have a game of cards with some of your fellow shipmates.
If you’re feeling lucky, head to the casino and try your luck at all the classic casino games, including poker, blackjack and roulette. Be sure to stop by the photo shop to pick up photos taken of you and your party throughout the cruise. Keep in touch with those back home at the Internet café then head to the shops to find that perfect souvenir for them.
Bars & Clubs
Nightlife onboard each and every Costa ship is lively and varied, with a number of different drinking venues providing something for everyone, whether you like to relax with friends over a round of drinks, or whether you prefer to spend the night dancing along to the latest hit songs.
During the day you can head to one of the pool bars and grab a refreshing cocktail to quench your thirst, or stop by the solarium bar and get a drink to sip on while you lounge about under the sun. In the sports bar you can watch live sporting events while enjoying a round of drinks and delicious snacks. For a more refined drinking experience, head to the wine bar, where you can sample a range of vintage wines and accompanying cheeses from around the world, or the cigar bar, where you can smoke cigars and enjoy a selection of premium drinks. While exploring the ship, take some time out to have a break at the centrally located atrium bar and enjoy a round of drinks.
If you’re after a night full of lively entertainment, be sure to stop by the piano bar, where you can enjoy a night full of live piano music and a variety of delicious cocktails. Alternately, head to the main lounge, where you can watch top-quality entertainment shows, then spend the rest of the night on the dance floor. You will also find a nightclub onboard, where DJs play a mixture of classic songs and the latest hits and you can let your hair down and dance the night away.
Each Costa ship offers a wide variety of dining options to satisfy everyone’s needs. Head to the lavishly decorated main dining room to enjoy a traditional fine dining experience, complete with delicious international cuisine and excellent waiter service. For a more upmarket dining experience, book a table at the à la carte restaurant where you can enjoy a range of delectable food accompanied by the finest wines. These restaurants are operated by some of Italy’s top chefs and each has a warm and intimate atmosphere created by the soft mood lighting and soothing live piano music. Those who are health-conscious can dine in the Samsara Restaurant, whose menus feature a range of healthier options. All cuisine is freshly prepared using the finest ingredients and the latest cooking techniques.
There are also plenty of casual dining options for those after a more relaxed dining experience. Head to the buffet, where you can choose from a vast array of international cuisine, and load up your dish before heading outside to enjoy a casual alfresco dining experience. If it’s a light snack you’re after, stop by the pizzeria and grab a delicious slice of pizza, or head over to the pool bar and treat yourself to an ice-cream to cool yourself off with while you lounge by the pool. The café serves a selection of light pastries for you to enjoy with your coffee while you catch up with your fellow shipmates. You can even take advantage of room service and have meals delivered directly to your stateroom so you can enjoy a dining experience in the comfort of your own room.
For an evening full of entertainment, simply head to the ship’s multi-tiered theatre and watch one of the daily world-class entertainment shows. All of the shows feature a supremely talented cast who love putting on the best show possible. Throughout the duration of your cruise, you will find a great range of shows to watch, from Broadway-style musical productions and laser light shows to ballet performances and circus acts. On Costa neoRomantica you will find a smaller main entertainment venue, the Cabaret Vienna. Despite its smaller size, the shows put on here are just as impressive and dazzling as the shows performed on other ships in the fleet.
Health & Fitness
Each Costa ship has an abundance of health and fitness facilities so you can keep in shape and treat yourself to some relaxing downtime as much as you wish while onboard. Professional staff are always at hand to help you decide what treatments and workouts are best for you and can assist you in devising a personalised wellness programme that meets all your needs. All facilities devoted to health and fitness are spacious, comfortable and modern.
In the fitness center you will find all the latest state-of-the-art Tecnhogym equipment, including weight machines, exercise bikes and treadmills. You can work out at your own pace or you can join one of the many group classes on offer, from yoga and Pilates to aerobics and cycling. If you want to exercise in the open air, head to the jogging track and jog a few laps while admiring the stunning views and basking in the fresh sea air.
After an intense workout, reward yourself with a relaxing spa session. All of the treatments on offer here, from sensual massages and steam rooms to aromatherapy sessions and body care rituals, are designed to leave you feeling completely refreshed and rejuvenated. You are encouraged to make the most of the spa facilities on offer in order to make your cruise more stimulating and reinvigorating.
Over at the Venus beauty salon you will find a range of services available for both men and women. The professional salon staff work with you to decide what you want done, whether it’s a simple haircut or whether you want a makeover. Treat yourself to a manicure and pedicure, get some make-up advice or add some color highlights to your hair.
Costa Cruises actively promotes family cruising and provides an abundance of facilities for everyone in the family. Younger passengers are especially well catered for, as each ship has an abundance of space dedicated to children’s and teens’ facilities. Everyone aged 3-17 is invited to take part in the Youth Programme, which is split into four sub-groups: Mini from 3-6; Maxi from 7-11; Teen Junior from 12-14 and Teen from 15-17. Each of these sub-groups offers a wide range of age-appropriate activities designed to ensure younger passengers have the time of their life while onboard.
In the children’s Squok Club, children aged 3-12 will never be without something to do. During the day they can take part in treasure hunts, sports tournaments, dance lessons and fun quizzes, whilst in the evening there are themed parties, fancy dress parades and face painting sessions. There are also two themed dinners per cruise just for children, with menus designed with children in mind. On some ships you will find a children’s swimming pool and the Lido Squok, an outdoor play area with a wading pool.
There are just as many exciting activities on offer for teens in the Teens’ Zone. During the day there are swimming pool games, talent shows and karaoke competitions, as well as video game sessions on the giant screen, costume making classes and magic lessons, to name a few. In the evening, teens can enjoy late-night pool parties, themed evenings and lively discos with all the latest hit songs. Children and teens alike will find many exciting activities to keep them occupied. The youth clubs are the perfect place for children and teens to make new friends and have fun while onboard.
You must be at least 18 years of age to consume alcohol on all cruises, however for cruises leaving from US ports you must be at least 21 years of age in order to consume alcohol. No alcoholic drinks may be brought onboard; any drinks found will be confiscated and you will be able to collect it at the end of the cruise. Alcoholic drinks purchased at a port of call or in one of the onboard ships will be held until the end of the cruise, when it will be delivered to you.
Costa Cruises does not provide activities for children under the age of 3, although families are welcome to use the children’s areas during off-peak and low season times. However, Costa does provide a babysitting service in the Miniclub from 11.30pm to 1.30am, giving parents the chance to take part in late night entertainment, though this service is not available for children under the age of 3. The following items may also be requested: cribs, high chairs, bottle warmers, baby baths and liquidised food.
Most nights throughout the duration of your cruise will be informal: resort wear is appropriate and jackets are not required. On a Caribbean cruise there will be two gala evenings and, depending on length, there will be one or two gala evenings on European cruises; at these gala evenings, it is recommended that men wear suits and women wear cocktail dresses. Those who don’t wish to dress up can dine in the buffet, where casual attire is always welcome. It is suggested that shorts, flip-flops and sarongs not be worn in any of the ship’s restaurants.
Infants must be at least six months of age to be allowed on all cruise ships and at least twelve months of age for World cruises, transoceanic cruises and cruises that are longer than 15 days.
In order to cruise, pregnant women must not have entered their 24th week of pregnancy by embarkation day. All pregnant women must provide a doctor’s letter stating that they are in good health, are fit to travel and are not due to experience a high-risk pregnancy. This letter should also confirm how far along the pregnancy is.
Cigarette smoking is only permitted in reserved areas in some of the lounges, whilst cigars and pipes may only be smoked in designated areas, all of which areas are clearly marked. In all restaurants and buffet restaurants, theaters, lifts, stairwells, corridors and halls, smoking is expressly forbidden. Cigarettes must be disposed of in the ashtrays provided and never thrown overboard.
Costa Cruises has a number of different gratuity charges depending on where you cruise. For Caribbean cruises departing from the US and for cruises in the Far East on Costa Atlantica and Costa Victoria, a service charge of $11.00 per adult guest per day will be debited to your onboard account. For South America cruises and Spring Transatlantic cruises on the Costa Fascinosa, Costa Favolosa, Costa Fortuna and Costa Serena, the charge is $10.00 per adult guest per day. On all other cruises, the charge is €7.00 per adult guest per day. Service charges are not applicable for guests under the age of 4 and guests between the ages of 4 and 14 will be charged half of the adult rate. All service charges cannot be altered. Tipping is done at your discretion; a 15% gratuity will be added for beverage purchases.
Wi-Fi is available in all cabins, common areas and throughout the pool deck. You can either pay as you go at a rate of $0.66 per minute or choose from one of the pricing packages, which offer one hour for $13.19 or three hours for $31.52. All costs will be charged to your Costa card.
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