Costa Atlantica, a member of the Costa Cruises fleet, the largest Italian travel company and Europe’s number one cruise line, scored full marks in a recent inspection conducted by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States.
The inspection was held on 26 September during a stopover in New York. This was during one of the port calls of the Costa Atlantica during the latter part of her transatlantic cruise, which departed on 16 September from Savona and ended on 3 October in Quebec City, Canada.
The CDC inspections are part of the Vessel Sanitation Program (VSP), which was introduced in the early 1970s and involves all ships that stop in a US port. They are unannounced events and are carried out twice a year by officials from the United States Public Health Service. The score, rated on a scale from 1 to 100, is assigned on the basis of a checklist which encompasses some 48 areas of assessment, including hygiene and sanitation of food (from storage to preparation), water, shipboard personnel and the ship as a whole.
This is the 6th time the Costa Cruises fleet has received maximum marks from the CDC inspectors and the Costa Atlantica was actually the first vessel to obtain the perfect 100 in 2001. She repeated this success in 2005 while the Costa Mediterranea, the sister ship of the Costa Atlantica, obtained the top score in 2004, 2005 and 2006.
From 3 October the Costa Atlantica will be deployed on a series of three cruises along the Atlantic coast of Canada and the USA. This is an exclusive innovation offered by the Italian company to see the stunning natural spectacle of the autumn foliage tinged with gorgeous seasonal shades. During the winter 2009/2010 season the Costa Atlantica will be engaged in seven-day Caribbean cruises with departures from Fort Lauderdale in Miami.
The Costa Atlantica, which entered service in 2000, is 85,700 gross tonnage, 292 metres in length and 32 metres in breadth. She can carry up to 2,680 guests in 1057 cabins, 678 of which have private verandas. The Costa Atlantica was the first ship in the Costa fleet designed by architect Joseph Farcus, who created a fantastic and surprising ship designed to stun her guests. Her decks are a tribute to Federico Fellini, Italy’s best known filmmaker. Each deck is dedicated to a different movie and the walls are embellished with paintings by Milo Manara. One of the highlights on board is the faithful reproduction of the 18th century Caffè Florian, the only one in the world bar the original in St. Mark’s Square, Venice. Then there is the Ristorante Club Atlantica. This is situated at the top of the ship and is accessible from the deck below by a 40-metre high grand sweeping glass stairway that is suspended in mid-air, designed by the artist Luciano Vistosi.
The Costa Atlantica also offers a special ‘Wellness Programme’, which comprises accommodation in Wellness cabins and suites featuring special ultra-comfortable furnishings and exclusive amenities, a ‘Welcome Ritual’ with fitness lessons, choice of Wellness treatments and privileged access to the dedicated restaurant with Wellness menus.