Costa Toscana has debuted in the Middle East, arriving at Dubai Harbour Cruise Terminal for the first time Friday to commence her Arabian Gulf cruise season, sailing roundtrip from Dubai.
Costa Toscana is one of the largest and newest cruise ships homeporting in Dubai this season. She was delivered last March and is built on the same platform as AIDAcosma, which is also cruising roundtrip from Dubai this season.
The two vessels are owned by separate cruise lines, but Costa Cruises and AIDA Cruises are part of the Carnival Corporation group, which owns nine cruise brands and is a joint owner of the Dubai Harbour Cruise Terminal, its exclusive regional hub.
“We are delighted to welcome our second LNG powered cruise ship for the season with the arrival of Costa Toscana,” said Abdulla Binhabtoor, Chief Portfolio Management Officer, Shamal Holdings, Carnival’s regional partner.
“Dubai is a city where cruise ships play a crucial role in boosting the overall tourism strategy [as they]provide distinct choices to experience the city from a unique perspective,” he added.
Costa Toscana will cruise roundtrip from Dubai on 3-night, 4-night, and week-long itineraries throughout the 2022/23 winter cruise season, sailing 13 voyages, from December 17th, 2022, to March 11th, 2023.
“Last year, we had a great season home-porting at Dubai Harbour with Costa Firenze,” said Francesco Raffa, Director of Asia Region, Growth Markets and North America Costa Cruises. “We are elated to be back this time with our new flagship of the fleet, Costa Toscana, our most technological and sustainable ship to date.”
“We are grateful for the support we continue to receive each year from Dubai Harbour’s extraordinary location, facilities and employees,” he added, describing Dubai Harbour Cruise Terminal as state-of-the-art.
To mark her debut arrival in the city, Dubai Harbour Cruise Terminal Management along with public and private sector stakeholders exchanged plaques with the Captain of Costa Toscana in line with maritime tradition.
Some 300,000 passengers are expected to pass through the Dubai Harbour Cruise Terminal this season, boarding Costa Toscana or AIDAcosma, or one of the several other Carnival Corporation-owned ships sailing from Dubai this season.
Queen Mary 2 of Cunard Line, for example, will cruise from Dubai early next year, along with Queen Victoria, while the luxury cruise line Seabourn will sail a grand voyage from the city aboard Seabourn Encore.
Then there are the many non-Carnival Corporation cruise line that will be sailing to and from Dubai during the current season, using the Dubai Cruise Terminal at Port Rashid down the coast, near the Creek.
MSC Cruises and TUI Cruises are homeporting throughout the season, MSC Cruises with the second-largest class of cruise ship in the world, while Virgin Voyages, Oceania, Silversea, Azamara and more are all scheduled to sail one-off and repeat cruises from the city.