Today, Costa Asia (www.costacruisesasia.com), the first international cruise line to enter the Asia Pacific in 2006 and Europe’s number one cruise company, held the opening of its Japan office through a series of media and travel trade events in Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka. These events mark another important step in Costa’s expansion strategy in the burgeoning Asian market. In the summer of 2016, Costa will bring the new concept of causal family cruising to Japanese guests on board its ship the Costa Victoria to enjoy memorable, fun-filled cruises over a series of ten brand-new, Japan-based 6-day itineraries dedicated to Japanese travelers. Costa strives to offer the best vacation experience by giving its guests a rich and immersive experience in Italian culture – from hospitality, to cuisine, art and entertainment, and these cruises will feature an Asian touch to make Japanese guests feel right at home.
Buhdy Bok, Costa Group Asia President said, “My team and I are excited to bring our unique ‘Italy at Sea’ vacation and introduce the new concept of causal family cruising to Japanese guests. With the opening of our new Japan office, we will achieve greater synergies with our travel trade partners, boost awareness of Costa Cruises in Japan and strengthen our leading positioning in Asia.”
Yusuke Itokawa, Costa Group Asia Japan Country Manager added, “We are thrilled to finally set up our own office in Japan. The Costa Japan office will allow us to serve the people of Japan even better than we do today. We will build greater synergies with our travel agents and other travel and tourism partners, and interact more intimately with the people of Japan through more focused marketing efforts designed specifically for them. We’ve had great success serving Japan, and our new office will allow us to build upon that success.”
Between July and September 2016, the Costa Victoria will call to Fukuoka, Maizuru, Kanazawa, Matsue, and Pusan in South Korea. To enhance accessibility and convenience, guests will be able to embark and disembark at Fukuoka, Maizuru or Kanazawa, and with no at sea days, guests will be able to explore a different port and unique activities every single day. These brand new itineraries are perfectly designed for a short family retreat.
By focusing on Japan’s peak travel season of July to September, which includes the Obon holidays and school summer breaks, guests of all ages and particularly families will be able to have the cruise experience of a lifetime on the Costa Victoria. For families with young children in particular, Costa’s Squok Club hosts
activities and entertainment in a fun atmosphere, tailor made to children from 3 to 17 years old. Costa also has an exclusive offer for guests to bring along their children under 13 for free.
The Costa Victoria itineraries include iconic attractions such as the Izumo Taisha Grand Shrine and the World Heritage Site of Shirakawa-go, as well as undiscovered jewels like Kurayoshi, known as “Little Kyoto,” and the spectacular Adachi Museum of Art & Yuushien Japanese Garden. Guests can also explore the Yongdusan Park, which harmonizes Pusan Tower and 70 different species of trees; for the citizens of Pusan in South Korea find it one of their favorite places to relax.
Costa Cruises recently invested USD18 million to refurbish the Costa Victoria in 2013. The star of Costa’s Asia fleet, elegant, authentic Italian design elements are interwoven into every aspect of the Costa Victoria. Its lounges are decorated and embellishes with unique works of art, like the Capriccio Bar with its inimitable and valuable mosaic signed by Emilio Tadini. The Costa Victoria’s décor also earned it the proud distinction of hosting Asia’s first fashion cruise.
Costa Victoria’s five restaurants prepare sumptuous meals inspired by Italian cuisine, but with Asian guests in mind. The ship offers a variety of dining experiences, from a buffet to pizzeria to bespoke fine dining. Adults can enjoy any of the Costa Victoria’s 10 bars and disco, and guests of all ages are welcome to see any of Costa Victoria’s lively shows hosted every night on board.
To truly embody Costa’s theme of “Italy at Sea”, guests will be taken on a remarkable adventure where they can experience the world’s famous festival “Carnival of Venice” at sea onboard the Costa Victoria. The party kicks off with live music and a parade in the Atrium. Guests will have the chance to indulge in a variety of unique festivities to get a dose of culture, surrounded by the vibe and energy representative of a Carnival of Venice, complete with Venetian masks, people dressed in distinct Venetian costumes as well as traditional Italian gastronomic experiences found in every corner. Guests are also invited to dance themselves by participating in the Round Dancing session.
For more information, please visit http://www.costacruisesasia.com/ or contact Costa Cruises’ press office.
(From left to right):
Costa Group Asia, Japan Country Manager, Mr. Yusuke Itokawa;
Cruise Planet, President, Mr. Atsushi Kobayashi;
Ishikawa Prefectural Government, Port and Harbor Promotion Office, Director-General Mr. Fumitaka Arashi;
Costa Group Asia, President, Mr. Buhdy Bok;
Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, Ports and Harbours Bureau, Director of Industrial Port Policy Division, Dr. Makoto Mizutani;
Costa Group Asia , VP Sales China, Japan & North Asia, Ms. Felicia Tang Feng Rong;
JTB Tokyo Metropolitan Corp. General Manager, Ms. Chizuko Nishimatsu;
Overseas Travel Agency Ltd., General Manager, Mr. Yuichi Naruse