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Cruise Ship Information

Costa Deliziosa is a cruise ship flagship operated by Costa Crociere. Ordered in 2007 as part of a five-ship expansion of the Costa Cruises Fleet, Costa Deliziosa was constructed by Fincantieri, launched in March 2009, and handed over to Costa Crociere in January 2010.


Atmosphere on board 


Costa Deliziosa, a twin to Costa Luminosa, is a warm, whimsical ship with a simple layout that's easy to navigate. The 92,600-ton, 2,260-passenger ship, which debuted in February 2010, represents a "retro-style evolution" for Costa Cruises. What do we mean by that? While the Italy-based and European-influenced cruise line has been producing mega-ships like the 114,500-ton, 3,000-passenger Concordia-class ships (Costa Serena, Pacifica, Favolosa and Fascinosa) and the 132,500-ton, 3,724-passenger Costa Diadema, it has also been building ships like Deliziosa -- and Luminosa, too -- with a smaller design.

The sister ships are actually built to Panamax specifications, which means they're not only smaller than many of their fleetmates, but they're more flexible, too. Since Deliziosa can slide through the Panama Canal, it has more itinerary possibilities, and, indeed, it's been doing annual world cruises since 2011.

Costa Deliziosa's slightly smaller, more manageable size does not preclude it from offering all of Costa's mega-sized features and amenities, from vast spa facilities and kids club to its Grand Prix driving simulator and extensive entertainment options. And nifty self-service screens, called totems, let you check your onboard account, make restaurant reservations, learn about the crew, figure out what's in the daily program and book spa treatments from public areas without having to find your way back to your cabin.

While Costa attracts a largely European clientele, it's actually part of the Carnival Corporation, and the ship most resembles Carnival Cruise Lines in its design and in its layout. (Its jazzy interiors are created by Joe Farcus, a longtime Carnival decorator, yet there's a little bit of Holland America in its layout, such as a similar main pool design).

We're not convinced that travelers wanting a European ambience onboard will find Costa Deliziosa notably more upscale and sophisticated than the ships in the fleet's Concordia class. The neon signage in public spaces simply screams "mass market," for example.

Where Deliziosa shines is in its size -- it's big enough to offer dining choices, a handful of pools, and plenty of options in entertainment and recreation. But it's not so large that it can't pass through the Panama Canal. That means it can offer far more daring, interesting and exotic itineraries than its mega-ship counterparts.

Family with Kids/Teens


Despite its more upscale leanings, this is an outstanding ship for families -- with some qualifications. The Squok Club and the TeenZone, not to mention outdoor pools and recreational facilities, are well-designed and executed, and the kids on our voyage clearly were engaged. However, this ship is designed for Europeans so clubs are less elaborate than on North American-oriented ships; European kids and parents tend to do a lot of activities together onboard.

The Squok Club and Teen Zone are located adjacent to one another on Deck 10. Both offer colorful sitting areas and TVs. One deck up is the fenced-in children's outdoor area with wading pool and playground.

Children must be at least 6 months to sail. Programming is available for kids ages 3 (and toilet trained) to 17, divided into four age groups: Mini (3 to 6 years old), Maxi (7 to 11), Teen Junior (12 to 14) and Teen (15 to 17). The clubs are open from 9 a.m. to noon, 3 to 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Free group babysitting is offered between 11:30 p.m. and 1:30 a.m. At off-peak times, kids under 3 can use the children's facilities when accompanied by a parent. Kid activities may include arts and crafts, treasure hunts, dance lessons, sports tournaments, and evening ice cream and pizza parties. There are even a couple of themed dinners with kid-friendly menus.

Parents can request cribs and cots, high chairs, bath baths, pureed baby food and bottle warmers for use onboard. The ship does not sell baby food or diapers.

For the gamers onboard, PlayStation World is an elaborate onboard program that includes video gaming on demand (both in cabin and in the kids' clubs) and PlayStation Nights, which are held on huge, poolside screens. (You can also buy PlayStation products onboard to take home.)

Past Passenger Programs


The Ponte Vecchio shop features duty-free Italian designer goods as well as sundries. The library also houses the six-station Internet area, with 17-inch flat screen monitors and e-postcard capability. The 40-seat card room drew bridge fanatics, and the Sanremo Casino has 120 slot machines, along with six roulette wheels, seven Black Jack tables, a mini dice table and five video games. The Puccini Ballroom holds the Piano Bar and private parties were scheduled there, too, during the cruise. The Business/Conference Center has very comfortable chairs with pop-up writing tables and simultaneous translation facilities.

 

Fitness And Spa


Costa Deliziosa has two pools on Deck 9, the Azzurro Blu pool midship and the Acqua Regina Pool aft. The midship pool is the main pool, flanked by two hot tubs, mesh-and-metal loungers, a giant movie screen and a bandstand with lots of space for dancing (both day and night) and pool games. The open-air aft pool also has two hot tubs. A little kids wading pool is located in the Squok Club outdoor play area on Deck 11.

The upper sun decks have some nicer furnishings -- wicker seating with plastic cushions, as well as a few very quirky-looking chairs. Here, you can also find a few odd changing rooms that don't quite have full walls.

The Samsara Spa is always a strong point on Costa's ships. It's a playground for the holistic-minded and offers a thalassotherapy pool, an array of aromatic steam rooms, all sorts of spa services (from massage to acupuncture), a row of sun beds and an Asian-inspired retreat where you're served tea after treatments. While the facilities are definitely superior to other cruise ships, the design is a bit odd, requiring spa-goers to lock and unlock doors to get to different areas.

The two-deck spa is on Decks 9 and 10 forward with treatment rooms, a beauty salon and a fitness center with space for group glasses and cardio equipment. There's also a thermal suite with a tepidarium, laconium, Oriental and aroma steam baths, thalassotherapy pool, Temple of Peace relaxation area and tea house. This area is free to use for Samsara cabin and suite passengers; all other passengers can purchase a day pass for 38 euros. (Cruiselong passes are also available.) The spa locker rooms each have free-to-use saunas and steam rooms if you don't want to splurge.

Deliziosa offers some high-tech fun on its upper decks. The golf simulator on Deck 10 is highly sophisticated and offers 37 different courses to virtually play. There's also a more low-tech putting green. On the same deck, the Grand Prix driving simulator gives you the chance to simultaneously thrill and scare yourself at rapid speeds. You'll shell out 12 to 18 euros for three, five or seven laps.

On the lower tech side, Deck 11 sports a jogging/rollerskating track. Also on this deck is a multipurpose sports court.


Food & Dining


Costa Deliziosa's main dining room on Deck 2 is called Ristorante Albatross, and it's a beautiful, vibrantly red, two-deck-high venue tucked into the aft of the ship. The views from the wall of windows along the back are gorgeous. But what is also great about the dining room layout is the way the large room is designed into smaller, cozier areas, each with different ambiences.

Albatross is open for breakfast (7:30 to 9:30 a.m.) and lunch (noon to 2 p.m.) on an open-seating basis and for dinner in a set-seating, set-time scenario (early seating at 7:15 p.m. and late seating at 9:30 p.m.). Breakfast was excellent; there's a vast buffet area with meats and cheeses, delicious pastries, cereal and yogurt, and you can complement that by ordering off the menu. Lunch is lovely, too -- a low-key alternative to the busier buffet. The menu offers a handful of appetizers, soup, pasta, entrees and desserts. Spaghetti, chicken and cod are always available.

Dinner is the big event onboard, and preparation of dishes is definitely ambitious, a sort of contemporary melange of European cuisines with Italian definitely standing out. The menu is split into appetizers, soup, pasta, main courses, salad, cheese and dessert, with vegetarian items noted.

The ship's buffet restaurant, Ristorante Buffet Muscadins, on Deck 9 is open for breakfast from 7 to 10 a.m., lunch from noon to 2:30 p.m. and tea (or a late afternoon snack) from 4 to 5 p.m. It offers a range of stations that feature European favorites and North American ones, too. There's a pizza counter where the offerings were, disappointingly, more American than Italian (think thick, heavy crust). The buffet is open on some nights for dinner, as well.

One nice spot for breakfast or lunch is the main pool, Lido Azzurra Blu. There are small buffet stations out there (grilled food and sandwiches) and lots of tables. The pool has a magrodome, a glass roof that can be closed in bad weather and opened to the elements on sunny days.

Club Deliziosa, located in a scenic spot on Deck 10, is the ship's boutique restaurant; a meal there might just rank in the top five of all time! The red, white and black decorated venue looks out over the atrium and the outer decks, and features live music and space for dancing. There's a cover charge of 25 euros to dine there.

The Samsara Restaurant on Deck 2 is the ship's spa eatery and is primarily meant to serve passengers in the spa cabins, though others may dine there for a 25 euro cover charge when space is available. (Reservations are required.) It's open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu focuses on lighter continental fare; the lunch menu is a set three courses (appetizer, main, dessert) while dinner offers a couple of choices of appetizers, mains and desserts (like fruit salad and panna cotta), as well as one soup and one pasta.

One don't-miss spot (and, indeed, it's always crowded) is Deck 3's decadent Caffeteria Sugar, a chocolate bar serving both sweets and sweet drinks.

Room service is available all day and night. Breakfast can be ordered for delivery from 7 to 10 a.m. and includes morning beverages, bread and pastries, cereal, fruit and hot items like omelettes and pancakes. The charge is 5 euro per person ordering, but free for suite passengers. (Continental breakfast only is available for free to passengers booked in Premium cabins).

The standard room service menu, available the remainder of the day, incurs a flat delivery charge of 2 euros (free for passengers in suites and Premium and Samsara cabins). The limited menu includes a choice of appetizers, salads, sandwiches and desserts. Suite and other select passengers can access special lunch and dinner menus from the room service operator or butler.

Entertainment


Costa has always done an exceptional job with evening entertainment, and each night there was a head-spinning array of choices, from musical productions in the Teatro Duse to fantastic vocalists at

the Grand Bar Mirabilis. As the ship caters to European tastes, you might notice that the casino is smaller and dance floors more expansive than on American-centric ships.

Teatro Duse spans decks 1 through 3 at the forward end of the ship, and anchors the main entertainment thoroughfares on decks 2 and 3. Head from its Deck 2 entrance to the 4D Cinema Etoiles, where you can watch 3D movies with additional effects for 8 euros a flick. Continue on to the Grand Bar Mirabilis, with plenty of performance and dance space. The less-grand Galus Casino is flanked by the cigar lounge and the arcade. Past the atrium's lowest level, the colorful, two-story Discoteca Sharazad is as loud in décor as it is in decibel levels at 1 a.m. Its polka dot carpet, funky furnishings and mirrored entrance are dizzying even when sober, but it's the primo late-night destination. Get your bearings again at the Alcazar Bar and Lounge across the way, where you can hear live music.

Deck 3 offers the Excite Piano Bar, an enclosed spot with its own bar and lots of room, located just outside the upper theater entrance. At the other end of the deck, the Valhalla Bar and Lounge flanks the upper entrance to the disco.


Tipping


A standard gratuity of €7 per adult per day for cruises up to eight nights or €6 per adult per day on longer cruises is automatically added to shipboard accounts and distributed to cabin stewards and dining-room staff. The applicable charge for teens between the ages of 14 and 17 is 50% of those amounts; there is no charge for children under the age of 14. Passengers may adjust the amount based on the level of service experienced. An automatic 15% gratuity is added to all beverage tabs, as well as to checks for spa treatments and salon services.


Fellow Passengers


Deliziosa's Mediterranean itineraries attract cruisers of all ages, and summers see lots of families onboard. The world cruises attract an older demographic, with an average age of about 65, and travelers are typically retired and affluent. Italians are the biggest nationality onboard, followed by Germans, French, North Americans and Asians.


Our recommendation


The Costa Deliziosa is one of the most coveted ships in the Costa Fleet. The recent remodels on this amazing vessel make your experience more beautiful, modern and comfortable. With the amazing Galileo Disco and Observatory on the top deck, you can enjoy the 360 degree views during the day then party in the disco at night. Truly a beautiful ship with many wonderful amenities.