Thursday, 24 October 2013

Costa to market boutique cruising under new brand

Costa to market boutique cruising under new brand

By Tom Stieghorst
Costa Cruises said two of its older, smaller ships will offer a new style of cruising and be marketed under the NeoCollection brand.

The ships, the NeoRomantica and NeoRiviera, will do longer, more leisurely itineraries with plenty of time in port in what Costa has labeled "slow cruising." There will be an emphasis on locally sourced food and custom shore excursions.

Many of the itineraries are exclusive to the NeoCollection ships, which can go to smaller ports less accessible to Costa's bigger vessels.

For example, The "Mediterranean Heart" itinerary departs Savona and calls at Toulon, France; Salerno and Livorno, Italy; Valletta, Malta; Porto Empedocle, Sicily, and concludes with an overnight call at Barcelona.

At 1,248 passengers (NeoRiviera) and 1,578 passengers (NeoRomantica), the two NeoCollection ships are among the smallest in Costa's fleet.

Shore excursions for groups of 25 or fewer guests have been designed to highlight cultural and natural attractions in each destination.

New menus developed in collaboration with Università delle Scienze Gastronomiche in Pollenza, Italy, feature authentic cuisine that incorporates local food and wines.