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The 85,619-ton Costa Mediterranea was the second Spirit class ship in Costa's fleet, but was actually the fifth such ship created for the Carnival Corporation. She's the sister ship of the Costa Atlantica, as well as of the Carnival Legend, Carnival Pride, Carnival Spirit and Carnival Miracle. About 80% of her staterooms have an ocean view, while roughly 70% of those have a private balcony.
The Mediterranea has an onboard theme based on the 17th and 18th century palazzi (palaces) and castles, while the decks are named after the mythology of the Mediterranean Sea. Overall, when standing in the middle of the Mediterranea (in its 10-story atrium), there's very much the feel of a Sicilian palace. You're sure to feel like you're "Cruising Italian Style" while onboard this ship, as the food and staff is mostly Italian, and you're going to hear a lot of Italian announcements (also given in English and other languages).
In April of 2008 the Mediterranea received a special update, Wellness accommodations (also called spa accommodations). Guests staying in one of the 44 Wellness staterooms (which are all either balconies or suites) onboard this ship will benefit from a wide range of special spa-related upgrades, such as dining in a special Wellness Restaurant (see below for more details).
Costa Mediterranea will be featuring cruises in the following regions (subject to change, based on the cruise line's discretion):
2012: Western Caribbean 2013: Western Caribbean, Mediterranean
Costa Mediterranea has a nice range of (spacious, comfortable and brightly decorated) accommodations available, from inside staterooms to full suites. A unique feature onboard the Mediterranea are her Wellness verandas and suites (see below for details). All of the staterooms onboard Costa Mediterranea come with a private bathroom, air conditioning, mini bar (from which they charge you for anything you eat/drink), vanity area, 220-volt and 110-volt outlets, hair dryer, satellite TV and phone. There are a few handicapped accommodations onboard the ship, but they tend to get sold out rather quickly. The Mediterranea only has as few sets of rooms that are connecting, so it's best to book early to ensure you can get them (if you so desire). Families should be happy to hear that there are many staterooms onboard the Mediterranea that can accommodate up to 3 (called triple accommodations) or 4 (called quad accommodations) people.
Inside Staterooms: The interior staterooms onboard Costa Mediterranea have all of the standard features listed above, plus two lower beds that can be converted into one queen-size bed. Inside staterooms (which are categories I1, I2 and I3) can be found onboard the Mediterranea on decks 1, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8. Such accommodations are about 158 square feet in size.
Oceanview Staterooms: The Mediterranea's oceanview staterooms (at about 175 square feet) feature everything her inside staterooms have, plus a window giving its guests a view outside of the ship. Such accommodations are only located on decks 1 and 4, and are classified as categories E1 and E2. The category E1 staterooms have an obstructed view, meaning that there is something (such as a lifeboat) blocking your view outside. As such, E1 staterooms are typically less expensive than E2 staterooms.
Balcony Staterooms: The balcony staterooms onboard Costa Mediterranea are referred to as veranda staterooms. All veranda staterooms feature everything that an inside stateroom has, plus a private veranda (with deck furniture). Categories B1-B6 (at about 214 square feet) have a standard veranda, while categories B7-B9 (at about 232 square feet) have a large veranda. The B1 verandas have a partially obstructed view, making them the least premium of all the veranda accommodations. Veranda staterooms can be found on decks 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8.
Suites: The most basic suites onboard the Mediterranea are her category S suites, which are 400 square feet. The next step up is a (category PS) Panorama Suite, which is about 271 square feet. Costa Mediterranea's most premium accommodations are her (category GS) Grand Suites, which are about 488 square feet. All of the Mediterranea's suites feature everything that a veranda stateroom has, plus a whirlpool bath and sitting area. Guests staying in a suite also get special amenities, such as daily delivery of the lunch and dinner menus, a pillow menu, daily fruit baskets, sparkling wine and canapes on the day of embarkation, a kit of bath products and bathrobe and slippers (for use during the duration of the cruise). You can find suites onboard decks 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8.
On deck 8 of Costa Mediterranea are what are known as Wellness Staterooms. Category WB (Wellness with Veranda; about 215 square feet) and WG (Wellness with Grand Veranda; about 232 square feet) staterooms are Wellness Veranda Staterooms, while WS (Wellness Suite, which is about 400 square feet) and WGS (Wellness Grand Suite, which is about 488 square feet) are Wellness Suites. Guests staying in such accommodations benefit from exclusive spa amenities featuring three complimentary treatments, a personalized wellness consultation, two fitness or meditation classes, priority reservation status at the spa, a mini-bar filled with healthy food and beverage selections, aromatherapy diffusers, special shower and air filters, as well as dining in the exclusive Wellness Restaurant.
Being an Italian cruise line that heavily focuses on "Cruising Italian Style," the majority of the food onboard Costa is Italian. However, other options can be found onboard (including a few typical American favorites).
Each night of the cruise typically has a different theme in the main dining room (the two-level Degli Argentieri Restaurant), with a menu that reflects that particular evening's theme. For example, there may be a Caribbean Dinner, an Italian Dinner, an American Dinner, or even a Bacchanal Dinner (a classical Rome-inspired evening, where guests may wear togas to dinner). Besides the varying menu each night, there will always be a few additional options on the menu that remain constant (for those that aren't crazy about that particular theme's selections), including various meats, fish and pasta dishes. The menus in this venue are printed in Italian, with a second language (such as English, Spanish and German) below each description. The main dining room has an assigned seating setup for dinner, where you are assigned to either a main or late seating and dine at the same table each night (with the same wait staff serving you). Be sure when initially booking your cruise that you select the dining time you want, and please be aware that it may be on a waitlist.
There may be cooking demonstrations performed in public spaces during select days on some of Costa's voyages. When these are available they're quite a treat to see.
The two-level Club Medusa (located on decks 10 and 11) is the optional specialty restaurant (also known as a Club Restaurant) onboard Costa Mediterranea. This upscale venue offers a wonderful à la carte menu, with a $20 per person cover charge and $3 per person gratuity (both which are subject to change). You can make reservations for this restaurant prior to your cruise, or while on your cruise (based on availability). After dinner hours the upper level of this venue turns into a cigar bar.
Those staying in Wellness accommodations have the privilege of being able to dine in the Wellness Restaurant, located on deck 2. This venue has a special wellness menu, featuring spa-friendly cuisine.
There are a few casual dining options onboard Costa Mediterranea. Among them is the (large) Buffet Perla del Lago, located mid-ship on deck 9. This venue is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and features a few separate stations, each serving a different type of food. During lunch hours one of the sections of the buffet becomes a pizzeria.
Don't forget that 24 hour room service is available for all passengers. There is a basic complimentary menu, but it's an excellent option for a late night snack, or for when you're feeling a little lazy and would rather the food come to you. There are a few items on the menu that you can order at an additional cost, such as bar drinks. Guests staying in a suite are able to order from the main dining room's menu (for in-suite dining) during the dining hours.
The ten-deck high Maschera d'Argento Atrium, featuring a beautiful sculpture of dancers mid-air, is Costa Mediterranea's main gathering space. Because of its central location you'll often times find yourself walking through this area of the ship.
Costa Mediterranea has many entertainment venues. Among them is the three-deck high Osiris Theater, the Mediterranea's main show lounge. A different show is performed at this venue each evening. Examples of possible performances may include comedians, Broadway-style production shows, singers, acrobats and musicians. The Grand Canal Casino, featuring many slot machines and gaming tables, is located on deck 2. This area of the ship can get especially crowded during the evening, after one of the shows ends from the main show lounge. Also on deck 2 is the upper level of the two-story Discoteca Selva, Costa Mediterranea's nightclub. There is also a card room on deck 2.
There are many bars throughout the ship as well. Among them are the Casino Bar, the (Asian-themed) Roero Bar, the Atrium Bar (Maschera d'Argento), the Grand Bar, the Piazza Casanova Bar (a piano bar), the Oriental Lounge (located next to the library on deck 2), the Giardino Isolabella Bar (interestingly located beneath the Osiris Theater), the Solarium Bar and the bar near the pools. There will also be a bunch of staff members circulating throughout the outdoor and buffet areas, asking if you'd like a drink. As you might assume, you'll have no problem finding somewhere to grab a drink while onboard Costa Mediterranea.
The Shopping Gallery is located on deck 3, and is where a wide range of duty-free items can be purchased. Among the most popular things for sale is jewelry, liquor, perfume and clothing. Also on deck 3, located mid-ship, is the photo gallery (where you can purchase the various photographs that Costa's photo staff takes of you during your cruise. There is also a conference center on deck 3, for those that need such facilities. Also on this deck is the library, which is where you can find a nice selection of books and the Mediterranea's internet cafe (with a $0.50 per minute usage fee; subject to change).
There are a couple of large swimming pools located on deck 9, as well as a smaller (named Apollo) pool (towards the rear of the ship) and a few bars. One of the pools has a roof that can be closed during bad weather. Nearby the pools is a nice amount of lounge chairs and tables, great for relaxing in the sun or grabbing a bite to eat outdoors. Another popular area of the ship is her solarium (featuring a pool and retractable roof), located on deck 10. There are a few outdoors areas, located on deck 11, that are popular among active cruisers. On that deck is a jogging track, tennis court and slide.
The Mediterranea's two-level Ischia Spa is located forward on decks 9 and 10. Within this area is also a beauty salon and the Olympia Gym (with state-of-the-art workout equipment and an aerobics area). There is a charge for some of the aerobics classes (i.e. kickboxing). The spa offers a wide range of treatments, such as massages, facials, thalassic therapy treatments, and hydrotherapy.
Costa does a nice job for families with children and teens, as they have a children's club area onboard the Mediterranea (named The Squok Club, located forward on deck 5). This area features various games and activities just for children. Located just one deck below this area is the Mondo Virtuale video arcade. There's also a two-level winding water slide (open during select hours only), on deck 11, with a Jacuzzi by the pool that the slides ends in.
Just in case you're wondering where the captain and his officers are usually at work, the bridge is located forward on deck 8.
During the day people dress casual while onboard a Costa cruise. Examples of such dress include light, cotton clothing or swimwear with cover up when indoors. Some tours prohibit shorts and sleeveless shirts, and may require ladies to wear knee-length skirts or slacks.
Almost every night on a Costa cruise is informal. Costa asks you to feel free to dress comfortably in resort attire, as jackets are not required. Depending on your cruise's length, there are usually one or two formal nights. If you choose to dress formally, Costa recommends a suit for men and a cocktail dress for women. You may also dress more casually on such nights, in elegant resort wear.
Costa's children's program, called Costa Kids Program, varies based on the number of children onboard each sailing and on the particular ship and itinerary. When in full effect, this program offers four age-based children's programs:
Mini: ages 3 (out of diapers) to 6
Maxi: ages 7 to 11
Teen Junior: ages 12 to 14
Teen: ages 15 to 17
The Costa Kids Program is an interactive program that provides daily activities for children and teens. Activities vary based on age-group and include activities such as costume parties, sports tournaments, evening parties, treasure hunts, board games and junior aerobics.
The parents of children in either the Mini or Maxi groups are able to take advantage of free nighttime group babysitting (held in the children's area until 1:30 am). Nighttime babysitting is not available for children under 36 months of age.
Children have special counselors and a room designed for their activities. Children under the age of 3 are allowed to enter and stay in the room only during certain times (not during busy times in high season) and must be accompanied by an adult. Children's activities vary by ship and itinerary, as the number of children varies by sailing and programs are adjusted accordingly. Infants under the age of 6 months at the time of boarding are not allowed on board. This lower age limit is raised to 12 months for cruises lasting 15 days or more.
Costa will automatically charge your onboard expense account a per person, per day "service charge" to cover many of the staff members (such as the dining room staff and room stewards) that service you throughout your cruise.
Costa's service charge is based on your cruise's destination and duration. It is as follows (subject to change):
Charge per adult (per day)
14 to 17 year olds
Caribbean (departing from a US port)
Up to 8-nights
50% of adult charge
Caribbean (departing from a non-US port)
Up to 8-nights
Up to 8-nights
Far East (Asia)
Up to 8-nights
If you'd like to increase or decrease the amount charged by Costa for service charges, you may do so by contacting your ships' Guest Relations Desk (prior to the end of your cruise).
A 15% gratuity will automatically be added to any beverage purchases you make. It is at your discretion to tip bartenders, servers, deck stewards and various other staff members, if you so desire.
The minimum drinking age on all Costa cruise ships departing from a US port is 21 years of age. If the ship departs from a non-US port, the minimum drinking age is 18 years old. Any bottles of alcohol that you purchase onboard the ship (in the gift shop) or at a port of call will be held for you by the staff, until disembarkation.
The minimum gambling age on all Costa cruise ships is 18 years of age.