Olympic Gold Medalist Valentina Vezzali & Singer Noa Named Godmothers of Costa Luminosa & Costa Pacifica

MIAMI, May 29: Olympic fencing champion Valentina Vezzali and Israel’s leading international singer Noa will be the godmothers of the Costa Luminosa and Costa Pacifica. The two new members of the Costa Cruises fleet will be christened together on Friday, June 5 in Genoa at an extraordinary Guinness record breaking event.

For the first time in the history of Italian shipping, two new cruise ships will be christened together at the same time in the same place. This is a unique occasion, not only for Costa Cruises, which has been synonymous with cruising in Italy for over 60 years, but for the country as a whole. Accordingly, the Genoa-based Company, whose ships all fly the Italian flag, is staging the day as a tribute to the nation. The special event has obtained the official Patronage of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet of the Republic of Italy, as well that of the Municipality and Provincial Administration of Genoa and the Ligurian Regional Government. Costa Cruises, the largest Italian travel group and Europe’s Number One Cruise Line, has chosen two outstanding women to be godmothers of the ships. Both women epitomize international excellence in their respective fields.

The Costa Luminosa, the ship of light and the jewel of the fleet, will be named by Valentina Vezzali, the reigning champion in the women’s individual foil and a gold medalist at Sydney 2000, Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008. She has been ranked number one in the world for the past 11 years, is a celebrity in the sport and is a symbol of Italian success on the global stage thanks to her determination and laser-like focus.

The Costa Pacifica, the ship of music, will be christened by Noa, one of the world’s most popular concert and recording artists. Noa has strong ties with Italy and her name is synonymous with music that crosses cultural barriers. She believes in the power of communication and dialogue as a means of promoting peace and understanding. In 1994 Noa performed at the Vatican for Pope John Paul II and a live audience of 100,000. She is a FAO Goodwill Ambassador. Her musical career includes duets with artists including Carlos Santana, Stevie Wonder, Joan Baez, Johnny Clegg and Khaled.

In keeping with tradition, the two godmothers will cut the ribbons and thus let the two bottles of Aneri Prosecco wine break against the bows of the Costa Luminosa and Costa Pacifica at the grand christening celebrations, which will involve the entire city of Genoa in a spectacle of light and music dedicated to Italian-made excellence. A highlight of the celebrations will be an extraordinary display by the Frecce Tricolori national aerobatic team – another ambassador for the “Made in Italy” label – in the skies of Genoa, as well as a special tribute from Italian Paratroopers.

“An Italian Portrait in Music and Light” is the name of the show that will be staged as part of the christening celebrations, in a tribute to the all-Italian ability for making dreams come true. Starting from the inspirational themes for the ships–music for the Costa Pacifica and light for the Costa Luminosa-–the production will be a journey through the finest Italian talent, acclaimed and appreciated worldwide. This will include musical and artistic performances by some of the most important figures on the Italian and international scene, accompanied by Maestro Mauro Pagani, a professional musician with a highly successful career spanning 30 years. Pagani, who is the founder of Premiata Forneria Marconi, composed the sound track for the Costa Pacifica, the first “ship of music.” The climax of the soirée will be a spectacle involving the entire city and featuring special lighting effects, music and a fireworks display. The event will be broadcast live on the Internet from 10:00 p.m. (Italian time) at www.rai.tv/costacrociere and www.worldofcosta.com.

On Friday, June 5, the Costa Pacifica and Costa Luminosa will be moored in the Port of Genoa at Ponte Andrea Doria Dock, forming a highly original amphitheater complete with a large stage and grandstand with seating for 4,000. It is the first time an event of this kind will include cruise guests from both ships.

Costa Luminosa
The 92,600-ton Costa Luminosa will have a double occupancy of 2,260. She will be the fleet’s “flagship,” the most exclusive and innovative vessel designed for Costa. Innovations begin with the ship’s avant-garde design and the use of premium materials, such as marble, wood, mother-of-pearl and Murano glass. The ship also boasts prestigious works of art, including a sculpture by Fernando Botero, “Donna Sdraiata 2004” (Reclining Woman), which will be featured in the atrium. There are also numerous opportunities for hi-tech onboard fun, entertainment and relaxation including a 4D cinema, roller skating track, latest generation golf simulator with putting green, Grand Prix race car simulator, PlayStation World equipped with PlayStation 3 and the exclusive 3,500 m² “Samsara Spa” wellness center, complete with a Technogym Kinesis room.

Costa Pacifica
The 114,500-ton Costa Pacifica will have a double occupancy of 3,000. She is the sister ship of the Costa Concordia and the Costa Serena and will be the “ship of music.” The best of music from all times is not only the inspiration for the interior design of the various public areas, but also provides a real “experience” to guide guests in a “musical” voyage to discover each area of the vessel. Each area will feature one of the 29 songs of the exclusive sound track by maestro Mauro Pagani, consisting of 22 arrangements of the most famous songs of all times and seven original compositions created especially for the ship. Costa’s new flagship will also be the world’s first vessel with a recording studio fitted out with sophisticated musical equipment, where guests can sing their favorite song with a musical base and record a CD as a vacation memento. On board the Costa Pacifica, just like the Costa Luminosa, guests will be treated to the best of the latest innovations of the Costa fleet: the Samsara spa wellness area (extending over more than 6,000 m²) and including cabins with convenient direct access to the spa, a Grand Prix race car simulator, a central swimming pool area, extending over two decks with a retractable glass roof and a giant 18 m² screen as well as a “Playstation World,” area equipped exclusively with PS3 games.

For reservations or more information regarding Costa Cruises, guests may contact a travel agent, call (800) GO-COSTA or visit www.costacruises.com.