Construction of the new flagship of Costa Cruises - Costa Smeralda, is continuing at Meyer's shipyard in Turku, Finland. The yellow funnel with the blue “C”, that has identified all the ships of the Italian company for the last seventy years, has now been installed. It will not only be a symbol but is connected to one of the major technological innovations in the vessel.
Costa Smeralda is due to be the first ship for the world cruise market, specifically the European, to be fuelled, both at sea and in port, by LNG (liquefied natural gas), the world's cleanest fossil fuel. The environmental transformation will improve air quality as it almost entirely prevents particulate and sulfur oxide emissions. It also significantly reduces emissions of CO2 and nitrogen oxides.
With a GT of more than 180,000 tons and more than 2,600 staterooms, Costa Smeralda enters service in October 2019. Delivery of Smeralda's twin, also being constructed by Meyer-Turku, is scheduled for 2021. Smeralda and her sistership are part of an expansion plan for Costa Group fleet under which 7 newbuilds will be delivered by 2023, for an investment of more than 6 billion euros.
Costa Smeralda's debut is scheduled for October 20 with a 15-day inaugural voyage from Hamburg to Savona. The official christening ceremony will be held in Savona on November 3. On November 4, a 6-day inaugural cruise will depart Savona for Barcelona, Marseilles, and Civitavecchia. The ship will then continue sailing in the Western Mediterranean through April 2021, offering week-long cruises to discover Savona, Barcelona, Marseilles, Palma de Mallorca, Civitavecchia, La Spezia.