Carnival Cruise Line Names Newest Italian-Style Ship in California

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Carnival Cruise Line has officially welcomed Carnival Firenze to the fleet with a ceremonial naming for the vessel held in Long Beach, California, on the evening of Wednesday, April 24.

As the ship will sail year-round from the California homeport with a variety of itineraries, the location of the naming ceremony was especially meaningful, and adds significant capacity to the cruise line’s Golden State operations.

Carnival Firenze Christening Ceremony

All the Hollywood stars aligned on Wednesday, April 24 to welcome Carnival Firenze to the Fun Ship fleet with her official naming ceremony in Long Beach, California. This welcomes the ship at a critical time, just ahead of the busy summer sailing season when more travelers will be taking to the waves for oceangoing getaways.

The star-studded naming ceremony featured actor Jonathan Bennett as the ship’s official godfather, joined by the ship’s master, Captain Enzo Palomba, pouring champagne over the ship’s bell to christen the vessel.

Other elements of the momentous occasion included entertainment performances, live music, an Italian blessing by Father Charbel Grbavac of the Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church in nearby San Pedro, California, and remarks by various VIPs, including Christine Duffy, Carnival Cruise Line president.

Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony
Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony

The ship combines the best of elegant Italian styling and the popular fun of Carnival Cruise Line, with decorative elements from her days as Costa Firenze preserved in her luxurious venues. The vessel has undergone extensive, 49-day renovation in Cadiz, Spain to be transformed to a Carnival ship with popular venues and features characteristic of the line.

“The recipe combining this ship’s beautiful Italian theming with the familiarity of our friendly team’s hospitality is, in a word, perfecto!” said Duffy.

Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony
Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony

Rapid Growth for Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Firenze represents the culmination of the rapid growth of Carnival Cruise Line in the post-pandemic era. During the industry shutdown, the cruise line retired and sold a number of older vessels in an accelerated refresh of the fleet, but the addition of Carnival Firenze brings the entire fleet back to 27 active ships, equal to the number of Carnival ships sailing before the pandemic.

“During the pandemic, we had to say goodbye to some of our ships that were retired and sold and sent to that desolate and heartbreaking beach in Turkey,” explained John Heald, Carnival Cruise Line Brand Ambassador.

“Since the return of the fun, we have added more ships to the fleet. So before Covid arrived, we had 27 ships, then we lost some during Covid and now today with the official naming of Carnival Firenze we once again have 27 ships in the fleet.”

Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony
Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony

That achievement is well worth celebrating. Carnival Firenze is the fifth ship added to the fleet since the restart, joining Mardi Gras (2021), Carnival Celebration (2022), Carnival Venezia (2023), and Carnival Jubilee (2023).

Carnival Firenze is especially significant as the ship will be homeported year-round from Long Beach, dramatically increasing Carnival’s sailings from California.

“We carry more guests than any other cruise line from California, and now this ship is giving us the opportunity to offer more fun to more people sailing from Long Beach,” said Duffy.

Carnival Firenze joins Carnival Panorama and Carnival Radiance. As all three ships begin full calendars, Carnival Cruise Line expects to offer more than 200 sailings from Long Beach in 2025, welcoming more than 750,000 total guests. This is more than 100,000 guests higher than 2019’s passenger load from the homeport.

Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony
Carnival Firenze Naming Ceremony

Read Also: Must-Know Things About the Long Beach Cruise Terminal

Carnival Firenze is offering a diverse schedule of itineraries through January 2026, with cruises ranging from 3-7 nights visiting outstanding ports such as Cabo San Lucas, Ensenada, Puerto Vallarta, and Mazatlán.

Her inaugural sailing under the Carnival brand is a 7-night Mexican Riviera itinerary that departs on Thursday, April 25. The 135,156-gross-ton, Vista-class ship can welcome 4,126 guests at double occupancy, or up to 5,245 travelers when fully booked.

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