On January 24, 2012, I enjoyed the rather exclusive privilege of spending an afternoon aboard the 2010-built COSTA DELIZIOSA during the ship’s maiden Los Angeles call.  This would be my first time on board a Costa Cruises ship since the Italian-based company’s purchase by Carnival in 2000.


Although the DELIZIOSA is part of a vast Carnival Corporation common platform that includes no less than four Carnival ships, six Holland America Line ships, two Cunarders, one P&O vessel and three other Costa ships, I was pleasantly surprised to find that she has a distinct and highly appealing style of her own. Despite being the product of an American designer, the COSTA DELIZIOSA has a genuine Italian flair, brimming with quality fittings, a liner-esque Italian MidCentury ambiance, several appealingly “clubby” spaces and a familiar glitz that is the signature of the renowned Joseph Farcus.


The Costa fleet is the European “Mass Market” or “Contemporary” equivalent to Carnival but the USD $450 million flagships DELIZIOSA and her 2009-built twin, the COSTA LUMINOSA, are considered slightly more upmarket, if not “Premium”. They introduce some firsts such as a roller skating track, 4-D Cinema and environmentally-friendly “cold ironing” — a direct-to-shore plug-in that can power their generators when they are in port, allowing their engines to be shut off.

COSTA DELIZIOSA’s signature Costa “chimney pot” funnel

The DELIZIOSA’s decorative theme is “sheer pleasure”, employing a large collection of specially-commissioned artworks and quality fittings of Murano glass, multiple varieties of marble, hand-applied stucco and rare tropical veneers. As part of a five ship order, COSTA DELIZIOSA was the third Fincantieri ship built for the line within a nine month period. She was christened in Dubai in February 2010 during her maiden cruise and has been employed in Gulf-based and European cruise service until embarking on a 100 day round-the-world cruise in December 2011.

COSTA DELIZIOSA superstructure at Los Angeles.

COSTA DELIZIOSA has 1,130 cabins in total, including 52 with direct access to the Samsara Spa, 662 with private balcony, 106 suites with private balcony and 4 suites with direct access to the Samsara Spa. Alas, as the ship was fully occupied during her maiden Los Angeles visit, none were open for inspection or photography before this Decked! was published.

COSTA DELIZIOSA builder's plate.

Builders: Fincantieri, Marghera, Italy (yard number 6164)
Registry: Italy (Genoa)
Gross Tonnage: 92,600
Measurements: 965 by 106 feet
Passengers: 2,826 (total beds)
Crew: 934
Speed: 21.5 knots (service speed), 23 knots (maximum)

COSTA DELIZIOSA glows under a luminous Southern California sunset.

All Photos by and Copyright Peter Knego 2012 unless otherwise noted.

Costa Cruise Line

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COSTA DELIZIOSA has twelve passenger decks. Here is a top to bottom look at most of the ship’s deck areas and public rooms:

Girasole Deck (12)

Forward Deck 12, facing aft.
Facing forward from Deck 12.

The uppermost level, Girasole Deck (12), is composed of two platforms. The forward portion of Deck 12 is encircled by the jogging and rollerskating track on midships Deck 11. It features sunning space with a lofty view.

Aft Deck 12, facing aft.

Aft Deck 12 is located directly behind the funnel platform and consists of more open sunning space with a view over the stern.

Fuxia Deck (11)

Forward Deck 11, facing starboard.
Aft from forward/port Deck 11.

Fuxia Deck (11) has acres of open sunning and observation space. The forward portion of this level is sheltered by glass screens. Sun loungers are located on either side of a skylight atop the central portion of the Samsara Spa.

Lido Squok, facing forward.

On the port side of Deck 11 adjacent to the radio mast housing, there is an outdoor space for children called Lido Squok, which has a wading pool and playground.

Midships Deck 11 facing aft.

Terraces on Deck 11 continue on either side of the Magrodome-covered, midships Lido Azzurro Blu pool area.

Midships/aft Deck 11, facing aft from port.
Facing forward from Midships/aft Deck 11.

The midships portion of Deck 11 has a dual roller skating (red) and jogging (yellow) track that surrounds the Deck 12 platform.

Games Court, facing starboard.

A net-covered Games Court on aft Deck 11 features a half basketball court.

Facing forward from aft/port Deck 11.
Aft Deck 11, facing forward.
Over stern from aft/port Deck 11.

The aft portion of Deck 11 features terraces on either side with built-in telescopes and more sunning space with a view over the stern.

Magnolia Deck (10)

Gymnasium, facing starboard.
Spa whirlpool, facing port from Deck 10.
Gym, facing forward.

Magnolia Deck (10) begins with the upper level of the two deck, 3,500 square meter Samsara Spa. On the starboard side, there is a Gymnasium overlooking the bow that also has a port-facing view over the Thalassotherapy pool.

Aerobics/Spinning, facing aft.

Immediately aft and adjoining the Gym is an Aerobics and Spinning Room.

Solarium, facing aft.
Tanning beds.

On the port side of the Deck 10 level of the Samsara Spa, there is a Solarium that features individual tanning beds.

Teen Center, facing forward/port.

Immediately aft of the Solarium is the Teen Center.

Club Squok, facing port.

Club Squok is the Children’s Playroom behind the Teen Center on port Deck 10.

Facing aft from Deck 10 terrace.
Facing forward from Deck 10 terrace.

Deck 10 continues aft of with sheltered terraces that overlook the midships Lido Azzurra Blu pool area on Deck 9. The “all weather” Lido Azzurra has the ship’s largest pool, two Jaccuzzis and an oversize LED screen that broadcasts movies, news, videos and sports events.

Club Deliziosa, facing forward/starboard.
Atrio Delle Delize, facing down from starboard Deck 10.

The U-shaped Club Deliziosa is the ship’s reservations-only specialty restaurant on the Deck 10 balcony overlooking the soaring Atrio Delle Delize, an eight deck tall, glass skylight-topped atrium. Club Deliziosa has a menu supervised by Ettore Bocchia, the executive chef at the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni in Bellagio, Italy and commands a $30 cover charge.

Deck 10 mini-golf, facing aft.

On the starboard side of Deck 10, there is a mini-golf course adjacent to a virtual golf simulator.

Aft Deck 10, facing port.

Deck 10 concludes with a sunning terrace.

Orchidea Deck (9)

Samsara Spa Rock Sauna, facing forward.

The lower portion of the Samsara Spa is located on forward Orchidea Deck (9) and begins with the Rock Sauna.

Samsara Spa Laconium, facing forward/starboard.

The Laconium is on the starboard side of the Rock Sauna on forward Deck 9.

Samsara Spa passage, facing aft.

A U-shaped passage links the lower portion of the Samsara Spa.

Samsara Spa Turkish Bath, facing starboard.

A Thermal/Turkish Bath is directly aft of the Laconium on the starboard side of the Deck 9 level of the Samsara Spa.

Samsara Spa relaxation room?

A Relaxation Room is located on the aft/starboard side of the Samsara Spa.

Beauty Salon, facing aft.

The Beauty Salon is at the aft end of the Samsara Spa on Deck 9.

Samsara Spa treatment room #10, facing port.
Samsara Spa treatment room #6, facing port.

Numerous treatment rooms are located on the port side of the Deck 9 level of the Samsara Spa.

Samsara Spa Deck 9 entrance, facing forward.

The Samsara Spa is accessed on the port side of Deck 9.

Buffet Muscadin, facing aft from port.
Buffet Muscadin glass detail.

Perhaps taking its name from the famed Italian restaurant in Montreal, the Buffet Muscadin is located towards the aft end of Deck 9. It’s yacht-like, contemporary decor is infused with light through an expanse of full-length windows. Multiple buffet stations offer pasta, sandwiches, warm entrées, a salad bar, desserts and pizza. Decorative highlights include wooden models, signal flags on the ceiling and glass yacht sconces sporting Costa’s blue and yellow livery.

Lido Acqua Regina Pool, facing aft.
Lido Acqua Regina Bar, facing port.
Lido Acqua Regina Pool, facing forward.
Aft Deck 9, facing forward.

The Lido Acqua Regina pool is the second of the DELIZIOSA’s main pools. Located on aft Deck 9, it is flanked by twin Jaccuzzis and a large sunning terrace.

Petunia Deck (8), Ibisco Deck (7), Ortensia Deck (6), Giglio Deck (5), and Camelia Deck (4)

Decks 8 through 4 are devoted to passenger accommodation.

Azalea Deck (3)

Port Deck 3, facing forward.
Port Deck 3, facing aft.

Azalea Deck (3) is devoted to public rooms and is encircled by a promenade, the fore and aft portions of which narrow considerably.

Teatro Duse, facing port from Deck 3.
Teatro Duse, facing forward from Deck 3.

The upper level of the 800 seat, three deck main show lounge, the Duse Theater, begins the line-up of public rooms on Deck 3.

Deck 3 to Deck 2 helix stairs, facing down.

Marble stairs lead from the starboard/forward passage on Deck 3 down to the pubic areas on Deck 2.

Caffeteria Sugar, facing aft.
Totally random Caffeteria Sugar carpet shot.
Caffeteria Sugar, facing forward.

Adjoining the Piano Bar, the gallery style Caffeteria Sugar is an attractive specialty coffee, chocolate and drinks bar on the starboard side of Deck 3.

Excite Piano Bar, facing aft.
Totally random Piano Bar carpet shot.
Excite Piano Bar, facing aft.

The Excite Piano Bar is located on the port side of Deck 3 and features a small stage for cabaret-style performances, edgy “modern” seating and clusters of blown glass chandeliers.

Galleria shops, facing forward.
Souvenir shop, facing starboard.

The Deck 3 passage winds its was aft through the Galleria shopping area. Note the “mod” ceiling recesses, not unlike those aboard the Post War Italian liners.

Bibliotek Velvet, facing aft.
Bibliotek Velvet, facing forward.
Totally random Bibliotek Velvet carpet shot.

The Bibliotek Velvet is an intimate nook on the port side of Deck 3, just forward of the atrium. It has a small reference library and provides internet access via several computer stations. The ceiling recesses, square framed seating, boldly-patterned carpeting and the geometric suede insets could easily be interpreted as a nod to the stylings of the late Nino Zoncada, Costa’s longtime interior designer/marine architect.

Starboard Photo Gallery, facing aft.
Port Photo Gallery, facing aft.

Photo Galleries flank either side of the Deck 3 level of the Atrio Delle Delize.

Classic Costa ships at Genoa image.
Port Deck 3 sitting area, facing aft.

The outer edge of each photo gallery houses seating areas that look out onto the promenade. For those facing inward, there are splendid black and white photos of late but great Costa liners such as the BIANCA C, COLUMBUS C, FEDERICO C and EUGENIO C from the Maurizio Eliseo and Paolo Piccione collections.

Chapel, facing port.
Totally random Chapel marble shot.

At the aft end of the Deck 3 level of the Atrio Delle Deilze, there is a splendid space that harkens to an era when all Italian liners had a chapel. Another richly appointed venue, it features warm wood tones, checkerboard marble, gold leaf and blue Murano glass.

Atrio Delle Delize, facing forward from starboard Deck 3.

The aft portion of the Atrio Delle Delize balcony has a pair of helix-shaped marble stairs that lead down to the Deck 2 level.

Bar Vanilla, facing forward.

Deck 3 continues aft on the starboard side with the Lounge and Bar Vanilla, a popular pre and post dinner gathering spot. The upper level of the Shaharazad Disco (see Deck 2) is accessed just forward of the bar.

Restaurant Albatros, facing aft from Deck 3.
Restaurant Albatros ceiling lights.
Restaurant Albatros, facing forward from aft Deck 3.

Concluding Deck 3, the Restaurant Albatros is the COSTA DELIZIOSA’s main dining venue. The upper level is a balcony with a large central opening that is bridged by a musician’s stage.

Gardenia Deck (2)

Teatro Duse, facing port from Deck 2.
Port Deck 2 entrance to Teatro Duse.

The middle level of the triple deck Teatro Duse begins the line up of public spaces on Gardenia Deck (2). On the starboard side, there is a small 4D Cinema (not shown).

Grand Bar Mirabilis, facing aft.
Grand Bar Mirabilis, facing aft from port.
Deck 2 to Deck 3 stairs, facing up.
Grand Bar Mirabilis display case.
Grand Bar Mirabilis butterfly detail.
Totally random Grand Bar Mirabilis carpet shot.
Grand Bar Mirabilis, facing forward.

The Grand Bar Mirabilis, which takes its name from the Latin term for “amazing” and “wonderful”, is a large, colorful bar and lounge located just aft of Teatro Duse on Deck 2. It features a large dance floor underneath a dramatic canopy of glass chandeliers, a long L-shaped bar, plenty of comfortable seating and a panorama of full-length windows.

Tabac Blonde, facing aft.
Tabac Blonde door handles.

Tabac Blonde is an intimate cigar smoking lounge on the starboard side of Deck 3. It features black leather seating and a marble fireplace.

Casino Gaius, facing port.
Totally random Casino Gaius carpet shot.
Casino Gaius, facing starboard.

Casino Gaius follows the Grand Bar Mirabilis on Deck 2. It has its own inviting bar and a vast array of gaming tables and slots.

Playstation World, facing port.
Totally random Mondo Virtuale carpet shot.
Mondo Virtuale, facing aft.

Tucked away on the starboard side of Deck 2 adjacent to the Casino Gaius, there is the adjoining Playstation World and Mondo Virtuale dedicated exclusively to PlayStation3 and other video games.

Deck 2 vitrine detail.

Vitrines with colorful spun glass figures are located along the Deck 2 passage.

Tour Office, facing forward/port.

On the port side of the Atrio Delle Delize, there is a tour office, which is followed by the guest services desk.

Atrio Deliziosa, facing aft from Deck 2.

At the foot of the Atrio Delle Delize’s eight deck lobby and trio of panoramic elevators is the festive Bar Delle Delize.

Atrio Delle Delize, facing up/port from Deck 2.

If the solid brass “Sphere” by Maestro Arnaldo Pomodoro looks familiar it is because Pomodoro’s well-known orbs can be found on other ships like Fred. Olsen’s BALMORAL (ex CROWN ODYSSEY) and the COSTA CLASSICA and COSTA ROMANTICA (soon-to-be COSTA NEO ROMANTICA).

Lounge Alcazar, facing aft.
Totally random Lounge Alcazar carpet shot.
Bar Alcazar, facing forward.

The Deck 2 passage continues aft on the starboard side with the Lounge and Bar Alcazar, another bar that is a favored gathering spot for pre and post dinner drinks.

Discoteca Shaharazad, facing aft/port.
Totally random Discoteca Shaharazad carpet shot.

Inboard of the Lounge and Bar Alcazar on Deck 2, there is the lower level of the double deck Discoteca Shaharazad (Farsi and Arabic for “city dweller”), which features a fiber optic acrylic dance floor, vivid primary colored polka dots and pulsating lavendar and blue lighting.

DELIZIOSA stairtower.
Restaurant Samsara, facing forward.
Totally random Restaurant Samsara carpet shot.
Restaurant Samsara table setting.

Located on the port side of the aft Deck 2 vestibule near the entrance to the lower level of the Albatros Restaurant, the Samsara Restaurant is reserved for those staying in the Samsara Spa cabins at no extra charge. It has a special wellness menu that can also be enjoyed by passengers who are not staying in the Samsara spa cabins for an additional fee on a space-available basis.

Restaurant Albatros, facing forward from Deck 2.
Totally random Restaurant Albatros carpet shot.
Restaurant Albatros sconce

The lower level of the dramatic Restaurant Albatros winds up the public spaces on Deck 2.

Narciso Deck (1)

Narciso Deck (1) is fully devoted to bottom level of Teatro Duse and passenger cabins.

1,130 staterooms on board COSTA DELIZIOSA include: 166 Insides, 178 Oceanviews, 644 Veranda, 36 Mini-Suites, 30 Suites, 14 Panorama Suites and 6 Grand Suites. There are 29 in various categories with facilities for disabled guests. Please note, as the ship was fully occupied, no cabins were available for inspection or photography but the layout and configuration of most categories is similar to Carnival’s SPIRIT and DESTINY Class ships.

Special thanks: Buck Banks, Martin Cox, Shawn Dake, Jose Docal, Scott Knutson, Natalia Ramirez

Peter Knego

Peter Knego

Having documented over 400 passenger ships and taken more than 200 cruises, MaritimeMatters’ co-editor Peter Knego is a leading freelance cruise writer, a respected ocean liner historian and frequent maritime lecturer both on land and at sea.  With his work regularly featured in cruise industry trades and consumer publications.  Knego also runs the website which offers MidCentury cruise ship furniture, artwork and fittings rescued from the shipbreaking yards of Alang, India.  He has produced several videos on the subject, including his latest, The Sands Of Alang and the best-selling On The Road To Alang."
Peter Knego

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