Costa Venezia, a cruise ship initially built for Costa Cruises, has arrived at the Navantia shipyard in Cádiz, Spain, to be converted into a Carnival Cruise Line ship. After a dry dock period, the vessel will be renamed Carnival Venezia and adapted to showcase the new “Carnival Fun Italian Style” product.
Carnival Venezia is the first cruise ship to sail under the Carnival Fun Italian Style banner. Carnival Firenze will join her in 2024. In the meantime, the former Costa Luminosa has also been converted into a Carnival Cruise Line ship but is not part of the new program.
The Transformation of Costa Venezia into Carnival Venezia
Costa Venezia, a Vista Class cruise ship of 135,225 gross tons with a capacity of 4,208 passengers, has arrived at the Navantia shipyard in Cadiz, Spain, to undergo a comprehensive refurbishment.
This conversion will introduce Carnival’s signature activities and experiences, such as the Carnival Waterworks aqua park, the Piano Bar 88, and the Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse. Additionally, the ship will feature Bonsai Sushi, Seafood Shack, Cloud 9 Salon & Spa, and the Serenity Adult-Only Retreat.
During the two-month dry dock period, the Costa Venezia will receive a new livery that shows off the traditional Costa Cruises and Carnival Cruise Line colors and lines and is highlighted by the traditional Costa Cruises funnel. Upon completion of the refurbishment, the newly transformed Carnival Venezia will embark on a 15-night transatlantic crossing in late May.
The cruise ship will then homeport in New York City, commencing year-round cruising operations in June with a variety of four- to 15-night cruises to destinations such as Bermuda, the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Canada, and New England.
Carnival Venezia will be perfect for the colder weather that can be expected on the North-East coast of the United States, as she will be one of the few cruise ships in Carnival’s fleet that features a dome over the main pool deck.
Carnival Cruise Line President Christine Duffy: “I think this may be my favorite spot on the ship. The Lido deck, believe it or not, and it’s unique. This ship has a Dome, so we thought it would be a perfect ship to bring to New York year-round. Because obviously, in the winter months, as we leave New York, we’re probably going to keep that Dome closed.”
For the coming three weeks, Costa Venezia will be in a wet dock to prepare for her dry dock period, which will begin once Symphony of the Seas sets sail for her summer of Mediterranean cruises starting April 12.
Introducing the “Carnival Fun Italian Style” Concept
Carnival Cruise Line has taken possession of Costa Luminosa, Costa Venezia, and Costa Firenze due to the collapse of the Chinese cruise market. All three cruise ships were due to sail in China, but as the cruise industry in China is far from fully operational, there was a significant overcapacity for Costa Cruises.
This acquisition has led to the creation of the “Carnival Fun Italian Style” concept, which combines Carnival’s signature experiences with the Italian theme of these ships.
Carnival Venezia‘s interior design is inspired by the city of Venice, with themed areas such as the main restaurants featuring Venetian architecture and life-sized gondolas made by local artisans. This unique combination of Carnival’s signature elements and the Italian theme will be the hallmark of the “Carnival Fun Italian Style” concept.
The Carnival Venezia will be the first to sail under the concept after its transformation at the Navantia shipyard. Meanwhile, Costa Firenze will join in 2024, sailing from Long Beach, California.
Carnival Luminosa joined the Carnival fleet last year and has been operational in Australia since then. She will be repositioning to Alaska for the summer season. Although a former Costa cruise ship, she is not part of the Carnival Fun Italian Style. Yet, she does share many similarities with the concepts of Carnival Venezia and Carnival Firenze.