This way, Costa vessels deployed regularly in Asia and operated by Costa Asia brand, become five, offering cruises marketed for local vacationers. Costa Group ceo Michael Thamm said:
'The deployment of a fifth Costa ship in Asia in 2017 will be built specially for Costa Asia, will allow us to continue to significantly grow the Asian cruise market in particular China, which is set to become the second largest in the world by the end of the decade.'
Costa neoRomantica arrives in Shanghai on April 10, 2017 following a 23-day repositioning cruise departing March 18 from Port Louis and visiting Port Victoria, Male, Colombo, Phuket, Singapore, Da Nang and Hong Kong.
The 56,800 GT ship will then be drydocked in Shanghai for a refurbishment to customize the vessel for catering to local sourcing. Costa neoRomantica will head on first cruise dedicated to local market on April 24, 2017 from Shanghai.
Currently three Costa ships are in Asia, while the fourth one, Costa Fortuna, arrives in Shanghai on April 22. Costa Serena started year-round deployment from Wusongkou International Cruise Terminal in Shanghai in April 2015, joining Costa Victoria and Costa Atlantica to serve the growing Asian market.
Costa Group recently announced an order for 2 new ships for Costa Asia, planned to be built by Fincantieri in Italy, and scheduled for delivery in 2019 and 2020.