Costa Cruises have confirmed the return of Costa neoRiviera to the Middle East cruise market in the 2015/16 winter cruise season, with the cruise ship due to sail roundtrip from Dubai on 8-night cruises in the Arabian Gulf between December 6th, 2015 and February 8th, 2016.
Departing every Sunday from Dubai Cruise Terminal in Port Rashid on 10 Dubai to Dubai cruises, Costa neoRiviera will visit Bahrain, Abu Dhabi and Khor Fakkan, overnighting in Dubai at the start and end of the cruise, as well as in Abu Dhabi, her second port of call.
With prices for some of these cruises starting at just AED 1,500 per person, they’re a good ‘testing’ opportunity for first time cruisers who want a cheap cruise option that’s close to home with limited travel required to get to the ship.
Costa neoRiviera is part of Costa Cruises’ ‘neo Collection’, which is made up of smaller more intimate cruise ships with a destination-intensive focus and expanded shore excursions available in each port of call.
The 1,700-passenger Costa neoRiviera is actually a sister ship to MSC Lirica, which until 2013 was based in Dubai during the winter cruise season, sailing roundtrip 7-night Arabian Gulf cruises for the cruise line, which have now been taken over by MSC Orchestra in 2014.
Costa neoRiviera was purchased by Costa Cruises in 2013 and re-launched following a AED 45-million refurbishment. She’s a regular fixture of the Middle East cruise season, sailing this year roundtrip from Dubai alongside fleet mate Costa Serena.
The Middle East and South Africa are both fast-developing emerging cruise destinations, while the Middle East cruise market is home to more cruise ships during its high season, a large number of the cruise ships that leave the Arabian Gulf at the end of the November to March cruise season head south to South Africa.
neoRiviera is one of these cruise ships, when she departs Dubai on February 8th at the close of her Dubai cruise season, she’ll cruise south to Cape Town on a 34-night Indian Ocean voyage with port calls in Oman, the Maldives, the Seychelles and Mauritius.