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Costa Croisières: I tested the new Costa Diadema

Around 90 nationalities onboard

Costa Croisières recently inaugurated its new giant of the seas: the Costa Diadema. A ship that mixes all of the Costa group's ingredients for success on the French market. was onboard and tried it out.

Rédigé par Laury-Anne CHOLEZ translated by Joséphine Foucher le Mardi 11 Novembre 2014

The Teodora lounge, one of the many relaxation areas in the new Diadema of the Costa Croisières group. DR
The Teodora lounge, one of the many relaxation areas in the new Diadema of the Costa Croisières group. DR
The title of this article is not entirely true.

Because 48 hours is not enough to test all of the services offered by the Costa Diadema, the largest ship trending in European waters.

And understandably, with 19 bridges, its 306 meter frame and 4,947 passengers (maximum), the boat multiplies spaces and activities to entertain its clientele.

Let’s start with the priority of the French: restaurants.

There are seven in total, with three as additional services like the pizzeria. Which is a bit of a shame for a company that flaunts its Italian identity.

But it doesn’t matter, because the options are varied, and the food prepared by 240 people in the kitchen, is of excellent quality.

The Florentino, one of the high-end restaurants, offers a menu of delicious Italian specialities that are served beautifully.

For a quicker meal, opt for the Corona Blu buffet, also tasty.

It’s worth noting that everything is made fresh on the boat: from pastries to bread.

The Diadema also has 11 bars, including a wine bar that offers 50 types of Italian wines, a beer bar, and an ice cream shop.

Larger and more numerous outdoor areas

The Emerald theater where artists perform every night to entertain passengers. DR
The Emerald theater where artists perform every night to entertain passengers. DR
To digest after a meal, no better remedy than a stroll outside.

The bridge number 5 is surrounded by a 500 meters long promenade.

The architect designed the ship with more outdoor spaces for passengers to fully enjoy the ocean air.

He also managed to save space by setting the rescue lifeboats under a bridge so that they don’t interfere with the promenade. Located closer to the water, they can be used more rapidly.

Because at Costa, safety is not taken lightly. Better not bring up the topic of the Concordia to avoid reopening old wounds amongst employees.

This is why all the passengers have to follow the security procedures. Slackers are gently reminded of their obligation with a letter discretely left in their cabin by the personnel.

The cabin crew is in fact absolutely delightful.

Close to 90 different nationalities are represented onboard, including many Filipinos.

“We opened a hotel management school in the Philippines. The students are guaranteed to be employed at the end of the program” explains Patrick Pourbaix, Deputy General Director.

In terms of wages, everyone is under the same regulation of the Maritime Labor convention. Most are under a fixed-term contract. But difficult to get more information, only that the non-European personnel is payed in dollars, and the others are paid in euros.

A spa of 6 000 m2

One of Costa Diadema’s 64 suites. DR
One of Costa Diadema’s 64 suites. DR
But let’s return to the activities: heading to an outdoor deck to lounge in a sun chair by one of the two pools.

To fully relax, children can be left to the care of counselors at the Squok Club (free). It has activities for children from the ages of 3 to 18 all year long.

The younger kids can enjoy a blow-up castle and galleon on the upper deck. The older ones can play video games or laser shooting simulations.

Meanwhile, parents can relax in the Spa Samsara, the largest of the Costa fleet (6,200 m2.)

Those who haven’t reserved one of the 130 cabins and 11 suites that include the wellbeing space will have to pay 35 euros per day to enjoy the services: hammam, sauna, and a thalassotherapy pool.

As for treatments, count €129 for a 50 minute Indian massage.

40% of passengers go on excursions

Other passengers prefer to get off the boat and visit the harbors during stop-overs. Costa has planned everything that can be found on the list of excursions in the rooms upon arrival.

Most excursions cost around 30 euros, but some can amount to 100 euros, like the visit of Maranello, the city where Ferraris are made.

All these additional services raise the average price by 30%. An increase accounted for mostly by the excursions that 40% of the passengers purchase.

After a day of strolling or relaxing in the Spa, it's now time for entertainment. The Costa Diadema schedules various musical performances, including three shows created particularly for the ship, that take place in the Emerald theater.

But careful, better not to forget an evening outfit on some nights: bow ties for men and glitters for women.

Because here, cruising is about having fun. “Some passengers even decide to wear their wedding dress” tells me a smiling regular, wearing a black, elegant long dress embroidered with pearls and rhinestones.

Clothes that match the ship’s decorations: lots of marble, mirrors, and colorful lightbulbs.

“The symbol of Italian refinement and elegance” claims the press release. We’ll let future passengers be the judge.

Lu 1599 fois

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