Carnival Cruise Line has released the first photos of the ongoing refurbishment of Costa Firenze into the upcoming Carnival Firenze, and a familiar face has appeared!

The replica of Michelangelo’s statue of David has been installed on the ship, ready to welcome guests with an authentic touch of Italian art and culture as they enjoy the ship.

Costa Firenze is currently in Cadiz, Spain undergoing her extensive renovation that will transform the ship into Carnival Firenze. Now, just days after the ship’s registry was changed to Panama in a step that brings her closer to her Carnival debut, a familiar statue and piece of Carnival history has appeared onboard.

The famous replica of Michelangelo’s statue of David—a pivotal piece of Italian Renaissance sculpture—is now aboard Carnival Firenze and showcased in the ship’s atrium.

Carnival Cruise Line Brand Ambassador John Heald had previously hinted at the statue’s planned reappearance aboard Carnival Firenze when sharing photos of President Christine Duffy aboard Costa Firenze over the holidays.

Michelangelo’s statue of David

“Now, take a look at the photo and the Christmas Tree because when the ship becomes Carnival Firenze there will be something else standing where that tree is now. It’s an old friend from another ship. Can you guess what it is that will have pride of place there?” he said.

It is particularly appropriate for the statue to have a place of honor aboard Carnival Firenze, as the ship’s namesake city – Florence, Italy – is the home of the original 17-foot marble masterpiece, which can be seen at the Academia Gallery.

The occasionally controversial statue was a focal point aboard Carnival Pride for nearly 20 years, showcased in the ship’s specialty steakhouse, David’s. In May 2023, however, Carnival Pride underwent a dry dock renovation that included rebranding the steakhouse, and the statue was removed at that time.

Now, the near-replica will be a great meeting spot for guests onboard Carnival Firenze when she debuts from April 25, 2024 for the first of two inaugural sailings to celebrate her addition to the fleet.

Carnival pride Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Mario Hagen / Shutterstock)

Cruise guests familiar with Renaissance sculptures will note that the cruise ship replica statue isn’t quite the same as the original, and sports a delicately positioned fig leaf to keep the anatomically-correct statue family-friendly. This type of addition is commonly made to Renaissance artwork when different cultural mores shift.

Carnival Firenze will bring more than just a statue for guests to enjoy with each sailing. The 135,156-gross-ton, Vista-class ship will feature top Carnival favorites, including the adults-only Serenity Retreat, the Cloud 9 Spa, the exciting SportSquare, a top-of-the-line casino, and delicious dining such as Bonsai Teppanyaki, Pizzeria del Capitano, and the Seafood Shack.

Read Also: Leadership Revealed for Next Carnival Italian-Style Ship

Render Courtesy: Carnival Cruise Line

Onboard, guests will enjoy the ship’s unique Italian-inspired architecture and themed artwork, along with exclusive options such as Amari, Frizzante, and Rococo for Italian-inspired cocktails.

Carnival Firenze will be homeported year-round from Long Beach, California, offering a selection of 4-, 5-, and 7-night Mexican Riviera and Baja Mexico itineraries. Depending on the sailing date and cruise length, the ship will visit vibrant and lively ports of call such as Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, Cabo San Lucas, Ensenada, and Catalina Island.

More details about Carnival Firenze are sure to be released in the weeks leading up to the ship’s debut, including milestones of her renovation, a special naming ceremony to celebrate her rebranding, and more.

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