Costa Serena has commenced her 2023/24 cruise season in India, homeporting in Mumbai throughout the winter until January next year.
The ship will sail 23 roundtrip itineraries of 2 to 5 nights from Mumbai to Kochi, Goa and, for the first time ever, the beautiful Lakshadweep islands. The last roundtrip cruise of the season will also include a port call in the Maldives.
In a sign of the growing importance of India as a cruise destination and cruise home market, Costa Cruises said in a statement that the cruise experience aboard Costa Serena has been tailored to offer “warm hospitality and customization with Indian cuisine and entertainment”.
Costa Cruises will be joining Cordelia Cruises in Mumbai, with the homegrown Indian cruise brand also sailing a range of roundtrip cruises on the Indian coastline.
Local cruise and tourism officials, including Shri Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways; Francesco Raffa, Director Asia Region & Growth Markets, Costa Cruises; Nalini Gupta, Lotus Aero Enterprises, GSA of Costa Cruises, and others gathered aboard Costa Serena to mark the start of the new season.
Costa Cruises sailings in India are popular with both families and couples looking for an international cruise experience with Italian hospitality. The cruise line has homeported in India for several years, most recently offering week-long itineraries out of Mumbai to the Maldives.
“We are extremely happy to sail again in India where we’ve been operating since 2016,” said Francesco Raffa, Director Asia Region & Growth Markets, Costa Cruises. “We are bringing to our Indian guests out authentic Italian hospitality with a local personalisation in terms of food and entertainment.”
“India is an important market for Costa, both for our established Fly&Cruise programs to Dubai and the Mediterranean, and for our newly introduced local operations sailing domestically,” he added. “We are grateful to the Indian government for the efforts to support the domestic tourism and on infrastructures development. India is working to develop the cruise industry and we are excited to sail together towards the vision of the Indian government.”
Costa Serena has a total of 1,500 cabins, 505 of which have private balconies, as well as several lounges, a dozen restaurants and many more bars and cafes across 14 passenger decks.
The ship also features a wellness centre and gym with a sea views, a beauty salon, a theatre, restaurants serving Indian and international cuisine, 4 swimming pools, 2 of which are under a retractable glass roof, a shopping area, and a kids’ club for children and teenagers.