officially inaugurated Costa Deliziosa
into its fleet of ships at a ceremony held in the Middle Eastern destination of Dubai.
Some 2,200 maiden voyage passengers and thousands of other guests were on hand to witness the launch of the vessel, which is capable of catering for 2,100 cruise lovers, with an accompanying crew of over 900.
Members of Dubai's royal family were also present as the launch coincided with the official opening of Dubai's new cruise terminal, which is expected to handle 125 cruise ship calls this year.
Alongside sister ship Costa Luminosa
, Costa Deliziosa will be based in the emirate, which is looking forwarding to receiving around 325,000 passengers this year alone.
Costa chairman and chief executive Pier Luigi Foschi highlighted the company's track record in serving the destination.
He is quoted by TTG Live as saying: "We were the first company in the world to offer regular cruises from Dubai in 2006 when we carried 44,000 people. This year, it will be 150,000."
Written by Chris Smith.