Costa Smeralda is an Excellence-class cruise ship set to debut for Costa Cruises, a subsidiary of Carnival Corporation & plc. At 185,010 GT, she is the largest ship commissioned for and to ever operate for Costa, and is the fifth-largest cruise ship in the world as of 2019. Costa Smeralda is also the second cruise ship in the world to be fully powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), making Costa the second cruise line to operate a ship running on LNG, after sister brand, AIDA Cruises, became the... Read more
Costa Smeralda is an Excellence-class cruise ship set to debut for Costa Cruises, a subsidiary of Carnival Corporation & plc. At 185,010 GT, she is the largest ship commissioned for and to ever operate for Costa, and is the fifth-largest cruise ship in the world as of 2019. Costa Smeralda is also the second cruise ship in the world to be fully powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), making Costa the second cruise line to operate a ship running on LNG, after sister brand, AIDA Cruises, became the first in 2018. Costa Smeralda is set to have a sister ship, Costa Toscana, that is scheduled for delivery in 2021. Her inaugural cruise is scheduled for 21 December 2019.
On 15 June 2015, Carnival Corporation announced an order for four 180,000 gross tons cruise ships powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Meyer Turku in Turku, Finland, with one of the ships eventually being built for Costa.
On 13 September 2017, Costa announced the name of its first LNG-powered vessel as Costa Smeralda, after the Costa Smeralda ("Emerald coast") in Sardinia, at the ship's steel-cutting ceremony at Meyer Turku's shipyard. 4 July 2018 marked the beginning of the ship's hull assembly with its keel-laying ceremony and its coin ceremony and she was floated out on 15 March 2019. The ship began a round of sea trials on 7 October 2019. A separate round of sea trials began on 16 November 2019 and was successfully completed shortly thereafter.
Meyer Turku constructed the ship with the help from sister yard, Neptun Werft, in supplying a section containing the ship's main and auxiliary machinery and related systems.
Costa Smeralda's delivery was marred by extensive construction delays that postponed her debut by two months and caused Costa to scrap initial inaugural festivities, including her maiden voyage, that were planned for the ship. Costa Smeralda's two postponements in delivery marks four substantial delays overall in construction and delivery for an Excellence-class vessel, after AIDAnova also experienced two postponements in delivery in 2018 at Meyer Werft.
The ship was originally slated to be delivered in October 2019. Her debut was scheduled to be on 20 October 2019, with a 15-day maiden cruise from Hamburg to Savona. Her christening ceremony was scheduled to be on 3 November 2019 in Savona, after which she would begin cruising the Western Mediterranean.
On 16 September 2019, Meyer Turku and Costa announced that Costa Smeralda's delivery would be postponed by approximately one month, to mid-November 2019, citing technical complexities with the construction. All cruises and ceremonies scheduled prior to this date were subsequently cancelled and the ship's maiden cruise was postponed to 30 November 2019 and moved from Hamburg to Savona. On 29 October 2019, Meyer Turku announced a second postponement in delivery for Costa Smeralda and restated the complexities as the reason for driving the project's timeline beyond the planned schedule. The inaugural voyage from Savona was now postponed to 21 December 2019.
On 5 December 2019, Meyer Turku officially delivered Costa Smeralda to Costa at the Meyer Turku shipyard.
As an LNG-powered vessel, Costa Smeralda will be powered by duel-fuel hybrid engines and receive all of its onboard and navigational power from LNG.
Costa Smeralda derives its design and technical template from the original prototype of the Helios class, which would later come to form AIDAnova. The ship is fitted with four 16-cylinder, MaK M46DF models, with each cylinder rated for a maximum output in excess of 960 kilowatts (1,290 hp), totaling 15,440 kilowatts (20,710 hp) per engine. Maximum power is rated at 37,000 kilowatts (50,000 hp).
Costa Smeralda has 20 decks and a length of 337 metres (1,106 ft), a draft of 8.8 metres (29 ft), and a beam of 42 metres (138 ft). Passenger capacity is 5,224 with double occupancy and 6,554 at maximum capacity housed within a total of 2,612 passenger cabins. The crew complement is 1,646. The system gives the vessel a service speed of 21.5 knots (24.7 mph).
Following her delivery, Costa Smeralda left Turku on 6 December 2019 for the Mediterranean for travel industry presentations in Barcelona on 18 December, in Marseille on 19 December, and in Savona on 20 December. She will officially debut on 21 December 2019 from Savona for her inaugural cruise, calling in Marseille, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Civitavecchia, and La Spezia.
We have missed our virtual tours of the shipyards, and several groundbreaking liners are being in the final stages of construction right now. Costa Smeralda cruise ship is among them. She will become not just the Costa Cruises’ new cruise ship but the company’s first LNG-powered liner and new...