Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Costa Fortuna: Settling In At Sea

We felt right at home as soon as we boarded Costa Fortuna, and small wonder—at 105,000 tons, the ship is basically a slightly smaller Euro-clone of parent company Carnival Cruise Lines' Conquest-class vessels and we've sailed on a number of them in the past. That made it a bit easier to navigate Costa Fortuna’s public rooms, although the size and mix of Costa Fortuna’s is slightly different. For instance, in the style favored by Europeans, the casino was made smaller to add room for the Conte Di Savoia Grand Bar that houses a suitably large dance floor.

More than 60% of Costa Fortuna's accommodations have an ocean view, and 60% of those also feature a private veranda, as did ours (pictured here). With a double-occupancy capacity of 2,720 passengers—maximum capacity 3,470—accommodations include Grand Suites, Suites, Mini-suites, Oceanview Staterooms with Veranda, Oceanview Staterooms with Windows or Portholes, and Inside Staterooms. Twenty-seven staterooms are equipped to meet the needs of handicapped travelers; numerous connecting Oceanview Staterooms are suitable for families.

At 185 square feet, our Oceanview Stateroom with Veranda on Deck 8 wasn’t the grandest on Costa Fortuna, but the location was primo. From our balcony we had a birds-eye view of the starboard bridge wing and could watch as Captain Claudio De Fenza directed docking maneuvers. We also overlooked the scene as one couple barely made it back to the ship in time. While no one wants to be left behind, they cut it very close.

But back to our stateroom interior—even though it was a 7-night cruise, we really appreciated all the storage space. The closets, drawers, and bathroom shelves could have held far more than we packed. We also appreciated a mini-bar fridge that really kept our beverages cold and a high-powered hair dryer at the dressing table/desk. While the layout was familiar to us, the décor is slightly bolder than on Costa’s Carnival cousins and the colors made the cabin cheerier. All-in-all, we found our quarters comfortable and homey.

When Costa Fortuna arrived in Port Everglades to begin her first Caribbean season in Nov 2007, we were on board to tour the ship and were assigned a suite for an overnight “slumber party” (sadly, we were docked all night). For a look at our plush digs, including the Costa Fortuna photo tour, visit Tomorrow I’ll share another installment from our Feb 8th cruise here on the blog.

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