The Costa Magica is not the most modern ship in Costa's fleet (2004) but it's still in good condition and probably more importantly it's a happy ship. It has a ship's compliment of just over a thousand and carries just over two thousand passengers.
All of the senior officers including the captain are Italian, while stewards, security, catering etc are provided by mainly Asian staff - all of whom are very friendly and helpful and probably underpaid by EU standards. Costa includes a surcharge in the price to cover tips which means that you don't have to tip the staff but a ten euro 'thank-you' to your steward or waiter at the end of the cruise will be very much appreciated unless you actually believe that the company accountant who dreamed up the surcharge also insisted that it was paid to the people who are looking after you.
We took a Mediterranean 10 day cruise that took in Italy, France, Spain and the Canary Islands during late September which meant that there were very few school-age children on board. The passengers were predominantly Italian and French along with a few hundred German, Dutch & Spanish and from what I could make out possibly a dozen British and American. However all of the crew speak English so you can order a drink without having to consult a phrase book.