Who says that Italians don’t know how to throw party? Well, no one actually, so it came as absolutely no surprise that Costa Favolosa got off to a showy start Friday as it left Venice under a midship blizzard of pink and iridescent gold confetti, balloons, entertainers in Carnivale attire (that’s with an “e,” notwithstanding the natural comparison many make to Costa Cruises and its American compadre) and shake-your-booty dancing. Oddly enough, there were scant pre-launch photos of the ship, designed by wizard-of-wow Joe Farcus, so I was eager to look around and see what he hath wrought with this newest creation. Turns out he’s wrought a show-stopper: The European-geared Costa Favolosa is one saucy number — from its spa and lounges (including the flashy Moliere Lounge, above) to its pools and, yes, castle.
Let’s go right to the castle (above). It sits on the top deck, alongside a pirate ship and a kids pool that’s behind glass to discourage wandering. But there was barely a kid in sight on Friday, so the adults were packing the turret to take in the view from the top. That could explain why the Winter Garden in the Samsara Spa was empty. I’ve seen lots of ship spas, but this one ranks among the loveliest, in no small part because of this row of private chaises (below).
One of the hallmarks of Costa Favolosa (its name is derived from the Italian word for “fairy tale”) is its use of public art — it’s all over the place, and the ship provides a guide if you want to scope it out. Below, a pair of sculptures greet guests to the aft pool.
You can’t have a ship by Joe Farcus, who’s designed myriad Carnival vessels as well, without some glitz. Ok, a lot of glitz. This is a shot of the atrium, a vertiginous sea of turquoise diamonds and glistening marble, and its fantabulous bar:
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