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Costa home-porting grows cruisers

December 14, 2018 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Costa neoRiviera’s  home-porting in Mumbai for the third season this winter is growing Indian cruise numbers. The Italian ship, the first international cruise ship to home-port regularly for three months will cruise between Mumbai and Male via Kochi, New Mangalore,  Goa and Colombo  from 8 December 2018 to 16 March 2019.

Nalini Gupta, Managing Director, Lotus Cruises, GSA for Costa Cruises in India, said: “From 20 percent Indians two seasons ago, we have 40 percent of them taking the home ported ship this season. Thanks to Costa Cruises and Indian Ministry of shipping and Mumbai Port Trust that are taking keen interest in promoting the segment. With these initiatives, 2019 and beyond will definitely be the years of cruising.”

Costa was also responsible for growing China cruising industry by homeporting  it’s ship in Chinese waters 10 years ago.

Sanjay Bhatia, Chairman, Mumbai Port Trust, said: “There were 60 cruise callings at Mumbai port this year. With two new ships joining by April with the new Zen cruises alone having 100 callings, there will be more than 200 callings next year. We’re developing an international port terminal as big as Mumbai Airport and that will be ready by last quarter of 2019.Marina and waterfront are also being developed alongside.”

The plan is to encourage a fraction of 250,000 Indian cruise passengers to join sail locally, instead of flying to far-off ports abroad and also to create new sailors to experience luxury of cruising long the third longest (Indian) coastline in the world. Angreya, a new 350 capacity luxury ship is cruising between Mumbai and Goa regularly. India has target of 4 million cruise passengers by 2035.

NeoRiviera has 654 cabins, including sea view cabins and suites with private balconies. It has a casino, theatre, disco, ballroom and a grand bar besides restaurants serving Italian as well as Indian cuisine. Magic shows, operas and burlesque dancers offer plenty of entertainment. An Indian wedding is also happening this week on board.

Costa’s third season inauguration in Mumbai

Marco Salvatico, Director, MICE & India Business Development, Costa Cruises, said: “There are 11,000 Indian travellers on board neoRiviera this season. In line wiith Costa cruises being leaders in recognising opportuinities in new markets, we will deploy a bigger ship with 35 percent more capacity next year.”

Costa Victoria, by Europe’s premier cruising company, with 964 cabin capacity will arrive in Mumbai next November.

Written by A and & Madhura Katti

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