Monday, October 26, 2009

Two New Ships Launch For Costa Cruises

USA Today

GENOA, Italy -- Costa Cruises inaugurated its two newest cruise ships Friday during an unusual dual ceremony that lasted eight-hours and culminated well after midnight.

Strong winds prevented Italian paratroopers from parachuting onto the two vessels -- the Costa Pacifica and Costa Luminosa -- to deliver the bottles of Prosecco that were destined to be smashed against the new ships’ hulls. But more importantly, when the moment came, both bottles broke on their first swing.

Israeli recording artist Noa named the Pacifica and Italian Olympic fencing champion Valentina Vezzali the Luminosa, at the same time, in an event that is now marked in the Guinness Book of World Records as the first time that two cruise ships built by the same shipyard and belonging to the same company were christened together at the same time and in the same place - a remarkable achievement, boding good fortune for discount Costa Cruises.

The evening began with a nine-plane flyover performed by Frecce Tricolori, the Italian National Aerobatic Team. It was followed by a Gala dinner before invitees filed into a grandstand set up between the noses of the two ships, both moored in Genoa’s Porto Antico.

The ceremony aboard cheap Costa cruises, featured performances by Italian musicians and a rhythmic gymnastics team, as well as a set of songs by Noa.

The strong winds at times muffled the performers’ voices and brought a chill that eventually drove many people away before the ceremony’s end.

A massive fireworks show that was planned never happened – Costa did not say why, but the high winds might have been responsible.