Costa Cruises’ LNG-powered green flagship, Costa Smeralda, sets sails from Palacrociere Terminal for the first 2021 cruise
A brief ceremony marked the start of the Costa Cruise Mediterranean summer season from Savona, with the participation of the President of the Western Ligurian Sea Port Authority, Paolo Emilio Signorini, the Director-General of Costa Cruises, Mario Zanetti, the Mayor of Savona, Ilaria Caprioglio and the Commander of the Port of Savona, C.V. (CP) Francesco Cimmino.
To ensure the full safety of all its passengers, the cruise liner has upgraded the Costa Safety Protocol, introduced by the company in collaboration with a team of scientific experts and Italian authorities, on all the cruises which set sail towards the end of 2020. The protocol applies stringent health measures both onboard and ashore in protected off-shore excursions.
“I greatly appreciate the sense of responsibility and the firm commitment of Costa Cruises to resume operations, consolidating the role of the Ports of Genoa and Savona as one of the major cruise Mediterranean destinations, with over 2.3 million cruise passengers”, stated the President of the Western Ligurian Sea Authority, Paolo Emilio Signorini. “Costa Cruises has developed a rigorous safety protocol with the health authorities that will allow passengers to enjoy the cruise experience fully, both onboard and ashore. I am proud that Savona is homeport to Costa Crociere, and I will continue to work to strengthen further this bond. We have made significant investments in the terminal and others are on track for the introduction of cold ironing in the passenger port, and we welcome the opportunity to respond to the city’s requests for enhanced environmental sustainability. We will also work to improve port accessibility, integrating the world of Costa in the local community.”
Costa Smeralda, offering one-week itineraries in Italy from the homeport of Savona and officially kicking off the summer season, is the first of a total of four ships that will resume operations in 2021 in the Mediterranean. Passengers will benefit from a totally renewed excursion programme, with a wide selection of off-the-beaten-track destinations.
As of 1st May, Genoa welcomes back the MSC Seaside, which now flanks the cruise line’s flagship Grandiosa, at sea since 16 August 2020.
The revival of cruise operations in the Mediterranean is another step forward which heralds the return over the summer of 10 of MSC’s current 18-cruiseship fleet. In August the future MSC flagship Seashore, under construction in the Fincantieri Monfalcone shipyard, featuring the latest and most advanced environmental technology, is set to join her sistership in Genoa’s Ponte dei Mille terminal.
The cruise vessel will be the first worldwide to offer an innovative air sanitation system, “Safe Air”, based upon ultraviolet disinfection technology which prevents the circulation of pollutants such as viruses and bacteria, thereby further improving the quality and safety of the onboard air for guests and crew.
All the ships implement the company’s rigorous health and safety protocol, which has been developed with a Blue Ribbon Expert Panel, and since August 2020 over 60,000 passengers have cruised with MSC, following the temporary halt of the global industry as a result of the pandemic. In addition, the vaccination rollout of all crew members of the entire fleet is expected to be completed shortly.
The Ports of Genoa, with the homeports of Genoa and Savona, are a model of best practice for cruising in full safety in the Mediterranean.