Costa Smeralda has been designed as a tribute to Itlay (Image: Costa Cruises)
Finnish shipyard Meyer Turku has moved delivery date for Costa Cruises’ first LNG-powered cruise ship, Costa Smeralda, from mid-October to mid-November 2019 due to unavoidable construction delays.
Meyer Turku has attributed the delay to the fact that the 180,000gt ship is much larger than the vessels that have been recently built at its yard and that it has an LNG propulsion system, multiple rooms with audio/video equipment and several other unique design features.
“In getting this all to work together with many involved persons and companies, Meyer Turku had a slower progress speed than needed, despite counter actions,” said the shipyard in a press release. “Meyer Turku apologises to all that are affected by this change. With the new timeframe, Meyer Turku is going to deliver a highly sophisticated cruise ship in the usual high Meyer Turku quality.”
Delaying the delivery date means that Costa Cruises has cancelled Costa Smeralda’s original inaugural cruises and the ship will now begin her maiden cruise from Savona, Italy on 30 November. The ship’s itinerary will remain the same, taking guests on a seven-day cruise around the Western Mediterranean via Marseille, France; Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca, Spain; and Civitavecchia and La Spezia, Italy. Costa Smeralda will offer this weekly itinerary until April 2021.
Costa Cruises will inform all travel agencies and guests who were booked on cruises before 30 November and offer alternatives.
“Our priority is always to offer our guests a unique vacation experience that exceeds their expectations,” said Neil Palomba, president of Costa Cruises. “Unfortunately, the Meyer Turku yard needs more time to ensure that Costa Smeralda will do just that, and this is absolutely crucial as far as we’re concerned.
“We deeply regret this delay and apologise for the inconvenience caused to all our guests who’ve already booked a cruise on Costa Smeralda sailing prior to 30 November. In any case, we trust that we’ll be able to welcome them onboard our new flagship and we’ve already made the necessary arrangements so as to offer them a new choice of departure dates.”
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