Carnival Luminosa Cruise Ship: Overview and Things to Do

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The Carnival Luminosa cruise ship might be a good option if you’re planning an upcoming cruise vacation. We’ll go through all the stats and facts about Carnival’s newly refurbished Spirit-class vessel, which was transferred from sister line Costa Cruises in 2022.

If you find yourself on the Carnival Luminosa cruise ship, you’ll notice a mix of Carnival and Costa elements, making this a cruising experience that’s, frankly, unlike any other. It’s time to find out everything you need to know about the ship, with onboard features, activities, venues, and itineraries. Here’s what you can expect.

Carnival Luminosa Stats

Formerly Costa Luminosa, Carnival Luminosa measures in as such:

  • Gross tonnage: 92,720 GT
  • Length: 954 feet
  • Double occupancy: 2,260 guests
  • Maximum occupancy: 2,826 guests
  • Staterooms: 1,130 
  • Passenger decks: 12
  • Total crew: 926 members 

Construction and History

Costa Luminosa was ordered in 2006 before debuting in 2009 for Carnival-owned Costa Cruises. Built by the Fincantieri Marghera shipyard, the cruise ship immediately made waves with a Guinness World Record.

Costa Luminosa was christened alongside the sister ship Costa Pacifica in Genoa, the first time two cruise ships were simultaneously christened in Italy.

Throughout this ship’s life under the Costa banner, Luminosa sailed primarily European cruises, around the Mediterranean, Baltics and Norwegian fjords, with winter sailings available in the Persian Gulf. Over this time period, the ship was accused of dumping sewage into the ocean.

Transfer from Costa to Carnival

It was announced in mid-2022 that Costa Luminosa would be switched over to a Carnival ship. This resulted in a fall 2022 refurbishment, with a new debut as Carnival Luminosa in November 2022 (Carnival Corporation is Costa’s parent company if you haven’t caught on yet). 

While the fall 2022 refurbishment did not completely transform the ship from top to bottom, the changes were expansive, and included updates to the dining and entertainment spaces, spa and other public spaces, as well as changes to the ship’s livery and funnel.

The livery features the same design that was originally displayed on Mardi Gras, when that ship debuted in 2021.

Costa Luminosa Cruise Ship
Costa Luminosa Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Roger Utting / Shutterstock)

New and/or unique, stand-out features include one of the largest spas in Carnival’s entire fleet, a domed pool deck, a large collection of Murano glass light fixtures and a newly outfitted casino.

There’s also a one-of-a-kind, large bronze sculpture in the atrium that was specially commissioned for the ship when it was Costa Luminosa. The sculpture, entitled “Reclining Woman 2004,” is intended as a good luck charm.

Carnival has marketed the Carnival Luminosa ship as part of its Spirit class, which also includes Carnival Spirit, Carnival Pride, Carnival Legend and Carnival Miracle. However, there are some differences between the original Spirit class and Carnival Luminosa.

In comparison, these other Carnival Spirit-class ships were introduced in the early 2000s (so a bit earlier than Costa Luminosa), and they’re all a bit smaller, at 88,500 GT.

Carnival Luminosa Cruise Ship
Photo Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

Despite Carnival Luminosa’s designation as a Spirit-class ship, you’ll find that the overall on-board experience is more of a blend of the Carnival Spirit class and Holland America’s Vista class.

Several ships in the Carnival Corporation family are reflective of two different classes, giving cruisers the best of both worlds and allowing for extra features (for example, using this blended approach ensures that some ships can sail through the Panama Canal). 

At the time of launch, Carnival Luminosa was the only and first Carnival ship to be based in Brisbane, Australia. 

Carnival Luminosa Staterooms

Carnival Luminosa offers 1,130 cabins, including suites. For just the staterooms, though, you can expect 268 interior staterooms, 90 ocean-view staterooms and 718 balcony staterooms. 

Within these three main types of staterooms, there are also a few sub-types of staterooms. For example, within the interior stateroom category, you can also book a spa interior, an interior with a window or just an interior stateroom.

The interior and Cloud 9 spa interior staterooms are very similar, with basic furnishings and slightly outdated decor reminiscent of Carnival in the early 2000s. If you book a Cloud 9 spa interior stateroom, though, you do get access to extra spa amenities.

The interior with window staterooms are more spacious, with large windows that, unfortunately, don’t give you unobstructed views of the ocean, but still allow in a lot of light.

Plus, the big windows just make the room feel bigger. This is definitely the way to go if you don’t like the boxy feel of some interior staterooms but don’t want to spend your budget on an ocean view or balcony stateroom.

The ocean-view staterooms are pretty straightforward, with extra sitting space, floor space, and small-ish windows to one side of the room, allowing you to look out at the ocean.

Read Also: What Is a Pullman Bed On a Cruise Ship?

(Honestly, though, if you want more natural light and not necessarily ocean views, you might want to skip this option and, instead, go with one of the interiors with window staterooms.)

Balcony staterooms are much larger and, frankly, don’t feel much like Carnival at all. Instead, there’s a marble motif and somewhat of a European hotel feel. You can pick from multiple types of balcony staterooms, including spa balcony staterooms and extended balcony staterooms, in case you want even more space.

Carnival Luminosa Suites

There are more reasons to book a Carnival Luminosa suite than just for the extra space alone. You’ll also receive a bevy of cool perks as a suite guest on this ship, including priority boarding and extra amenities. 

When booking your suite, you’ll have a few options to pick from. Carnival Luminosa boasts 10 Grand Vista suites, six extended balcony grand suites, two grand suites and 36 other suites, including junior, ocean and spa suites.

Carnival Luminosa Cruise Ship
Photo Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

The Grand Vista suite is the largest of them all, with a wrap-around balcony. Still, while this is the largest suite on this ship, if you’ve traveled in big suites on other cruise ships, you might find this one lackluster.

It doesn’t have a separate living room or dining room, and, as is the case with all the staterooms and suites on the ship, the decor is outdated.

The extended balcony grand suite features a large balcony and a soaker tub — two details that help this suite stand out from the just slightly less-impressive grand suite. 

As for the other types of suites on the ship, look out for the spa suite, with its soaker tub, walk-in closet and plenteous spa amenities. There’s also the ocean suite, with its balcony and somewhat smaller space compared to the extended balcony grand suite. The junior suite is your most basic option. 

Free Dining

When Carnival reclaimed this ship as its own, the brand did a great job adding the restaurants and bars to the ship that frequent Carnival cruisers already know and love.

Vela Dining Room
Carnival Luminosa Vela Dining Room

Despite that and unfortunately, when it comes to the complimentary dining options that are included in the price of your cruise fare, you won’t find much variety. Free dining options that you might already be familiar with include:

  • Lido Marketplace, the ship’s buffet
  • The Carnival Deli, for fast sandwiches
  • Pizzeria del Capitano, for pizza at any hour
  • Swirls, for quick ice cream
  • Sweet Spot, for more sweet treats and quick desserts

Lastly, there’s also Vela Restaurant, the main dining room.

Specialty Restaurants

Because you’re really not going to find a lot of variety on a Carnival Luminosa cruise if you don’t branch out from the complimentary restaurants on the ship, it’s worth it to pay a little extra to visit the specialty restaurants that come with an additional fee.

Luminosa Steakhouse
Luminosa Steakhouse

By doing so, you won’t be stuck choosing between a buffet and a more formal sit-down dinner every night during your cruise. Instead, you’ll have a few extra options and these options are, again, reminiscent of what you may have seen and experienced on Carnival cruise ships in the past. Specialty restaurants aboard Carnival Luminosa include:

  • Sushi Bonsai Express, for affordable sushi
  • Fahrenheit 555, for a classic steakhouse experience
  • The Chef’s Table, a classic Carnival dining experience that’s highly in demand and features limited seating
  • JavaBlue Cafe, for specialty coffee drinks

But we know what you’re thinking …. That’s still it?

Yes, unfortunately, Carnival Luminosa doesn’t offer an expansive array of dining options, whether specialty or free. This isn’t the perfect cruise for a traveling foodie. That said, the restaurants do get the job done, and you’ll also find some extra snacks and light bites available at some of the ship’s watering holes.

Bars and Lounges

Speaking of watering holes, Carnival Luminosa offers a handful of familiar options. Again, just like with the onboard restaurants, you won’t find a ton of options, but you will find enough to keep you occupied for a short cruise. Bars and lounges aboard this ship include:

Carnival Luminosa Bar and Lounge
Carnival Luminosa Bar and Lounge

Worth Reading: Are Carnival Cruises All Inclusive?

  • Alchemy Bar, a Carnival favorite for mixed drinks
  • RedFrog Rum Bar, for Caribbean-inspired cocktails
  • The Casino Bar, for a drink without even leaving your favorite games
  • The Piano Bar, for music and a show

Activities and Entertainment

So since it’s pretty clear that you won’t be spending all of your time eating and drinking your way through this ship, how can you expect to spend your time? Here are some of the activities and entertainment that Carnival Luminosa has in store.

Carnival Luminosa Atrium
Carnival Luminosa Atrium

Entertainment Served a Variety of Ways

If you’re looking for a show, you won’t be disappointed. Beyond going to The Piano Bar for some live music, you can also see a Broadway-style show courtesy of Playlist Productions or snag a seat at a comedy set at The Punchline Comedy Club. 

Lucky Shots at the Casino

Carnival revamped the casino with some new gaming equipment when it took over this ship. Stop in to try your luck at the tables.

Two Pools

A main pool on the ship’s Deck 9 (with hot tubs) is a family pool and the ship’s primary spot for fun in the sun. There is a quieter, adults-only second pool, though, also with its own hot tubs, within the Serenity Retreat adults-only space. However, unlike what you might expect for a Carnival cruise ship, there are no waterslides here. 

Main Swimming Pool
Main Swimming Pool

A Massive Spa 

As mentioned, the spa on this ship is one of the largest in the Carnival fleet, with two decks and a huge thermal area. Drop by for a massage or other favorite treatment, and make sure to spend your fair share of time in the hammam or hydrotherapy pool. The spa also includes a fitness center.

Kids Venues

You’ll find Carnival’s standard kids venues aboard this ship, including Camp Ocean and its kid-friendly programming for children ages 2 to 11; Circle C for cooler events for the preteens; and club 02 for the older kids who need less supervision but who still want their own spaces away from the adults. 

Carnival Luminosa Itineraries

Ready to see what this unique and one-of-a-kind cruise ship has for you? Check out Carnival Luminosa’s upcoming itineraries and book your family’s perfect cruise itinerary today.

Read Also: Carnival Celebration Cruise Ship – Overview and Things to Do


How old is the Carnival Luminosa?

Carnival Luminosa is technically only one year old, debuting in 2022. However, the ship resides in the shell of a former cruise ship, Costa Luminosa, which debuted in the early 2000s — meaning this ship is older than it may seem at first glance. 

Does Carnival Luminosa have water slides?

No, Carnival Luminosa has no water slides. It does have two pools, a main pool open to all ages and an adults-only pool in the Serenity adults-only area.

When did Carnival Luminosa move to Carnival Cruise Line?

Carnival’s adoption of Costa Luminosa was announced in mid-2022 and then became official with the debut of Carnival Luminosa in late 2022.

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