Biggest floating spa takes to the waves

Stretching more than 2100 square metres, the biggest spa sanctuary at
sea is now afloat following the debut of Costa Cruises’ giant
Costa Concordia.The largest cruise ship based in Europe, the new 112,000-ton megaliner
also boasts another cruising first - a full-scale Formula One driving
simulator with real G forces and vibrations.

Named and christened by supermodel Eva Herzigova to symbolise peace and
harmony between European nations, the A$716 million Costa Concordia is
the line’s 11th and biggest ship yet, carrying a maximum 3800 passengers
and crew. A twin sister, Costa Serena, will be launched in May 2007,
while a yet-to-be-named third of the giant triplets will debut in 2009.
Two other 92,700-ton liners will debut in 2009 and 2010, which will lift
the fleet size to 15 vessels.

Concordia’s key feature is her huge 2104 square-metre ‘Samsara Spa’
wellness centre extending over two decks - the largest spa on any cruise
ship in the world.

Reflecting ‘spiritual enlightenment and rejuvenation’, the Samsara Spa
sports a gym, Turkish bath, solarium, Indian-inspired holistic
treatments and an indoor spa pool offering thalassotherapy massages
using air jets and hot ionised seawater.

Passengers serious about a healthy holiday can even stay in Concordia’s
Samsara Spa, with 67 cabins and suites forming part of the sanctuary.
These deluxe, Oriental-themed cabins provide direct access to the spa
and will feature flat screen TVs, Samsara toiletries and a package of
spa privileges and treatments. One of the ship’s five dining rooms,
Ristorante Samsara, also offers a range of ‘wellness foods’.


Like her sister ships, Costa Concordia chases the ‘wow’ factor with
innovation, distinctive architecture, an Italian ambience and delicious
Italian cuisine shaping the cruise experience.

To reflect the ship’s name, designers modelled Concordia’s interiors in
a range of European styles including Irish Gothic, Belgian art deco,
Austrian baroque and Italian post modern.

Built to resemble a grand hotel, Costa Concordia also sports a
three-storey theatre, 13 bars, two huge poolside video screens, a
jogging track and three pools, including the largest enclosable pool on
any liner in the world.

Costa’s Australian website,, provides a
colourful snapshot of Europe’s biggest cruise line, including tips for
first-time cruisers, downloadable copies of Costa’s latest brochures and
webcams providing live vision from the bridges of each of Costa’s
gold-funneled liners.