Italian cruise line Costa Cruises is currently in the process of applying for a halal certificate, a first for the region. The line has been operating in Asia since 2006 and is celebrating its 10th birthday in the region.
Costa’s decision is designed to attract more Muslim passengers on its Italian-themed ships.
“When it’s ready, we’ll be the first European cruise line that has such a certificate,” said marketing director for Pacific Asia operations, Eunice Lee, during the cruise’s 10th anniversary celebration in Jakarta last month.
The Costa Victoria will set sail between October 2016 and January 2017 with ‘Italian at Sea’ theme where guests onboard can get European-style service as well as the finest Mediterranean food – think antipasto boards, fresh pasta and more.
Travel duration starting from three to five nights, its new departure locations will include Singapore, Phuket, Malacca, Langkawi and Penang.
The ship can accommodate over 2,000 people and features five features, 10 bars and Italian-themed entertainment such as the Carnival of Venice.
Costa Cruises also announced earlier this year, it would be sending its fifth ship to Asia. The Costa neoRomantica will be based in Mumbai.
Cruisers will be able to visit Goa and Cochin and to the Maldives and Colombo.
Buhdy Bok, president of Costa Group Asia said, “We are delighted to bring cruising to Indians at their doorstep.
“Now like never before, Indians will have the opportunity to start holidaying – right from their door-step – from India’s largest metropolis, Mumbai.”