In an exciting turn of events, the Carnival Firenze, a cruise ship inspired by the Italian city of Florence, has finally made its grand entry into Long Beach, California. This marks the beginning of its new chapter as the latest addition to the Carnival Cruise Line’s fleet based in the U.S. 

The new Carnival Firenze cruise ship, embodying Italian elegance, arrived at Long Beach, California, on April 23 to start its new journey as part of Carnival’s American-based fleet. 

The 135,156-gross-ton ship, capable of hosting 4,126 guests, traversed from Europe and journeyed around South America, with a departure from the shipyard in Cadiz, Spain, earlier in April. The ship will now become a permanent resident at the Long Beach Cruise Terminal. It will offer year-round, multi-day cruises, primarily targeting the Mexican Riviera.

John Heald, brand ambassador for Carnival Cruise Line, is aboard the ship and shared first looks through video on his Facebook page. He wrote of the arrival, “Today the crew of the Carnival Firenze will arrive in Looooooong Beach after a 30-day journey. Hopefully, the crew will be able to go ashore at some point but today, upon arrival, they have…”

Heald went on to detail the busy schedule the crew faces as Carnival Firenze prepares to home base. These include a full U.S. Coast Guard examination with various inspections of technical areas and the engine room, along with a full “abandon ship” enactment for the crew to perform.

“There could also possibly be an unannounced United States Public Health inspection, which each cruise ship will undergo multiple times a year,” Heald added. “Plus, there will be a whole dollop of beards joining today to be here to support the Captain and crew and to prepare for the ceremony tomorrow.”

The April 24 ceremony will be an official naming ceremony, livestreamed on Carnival’s Facebook page, beginning at 5:30 p.m. PST. The event will feature Carnival Firenze’s godfather, actor Jonathan Bennett, of “Mean Girls” and Hallmark Channel movie fame.

Originally a member of Carnival Corporation’s Costa CruisesCarnival Firenze was received by Carnival Cruise Line in February 2024 and underwent extensive refurbishments during dry dock in Cadiz, Spain.

Renovations included creating an Italian-style environment akin to its sister ship, Carnival Venezia, which sails out of New York City, also originally a Costa ship. Following the dry dock, Carnival Firenze took the long way to arrive in California, sailing around South America’s Cape Horn on its 30-day journey.

As the ship arrived at the Port of Long Beach, the harbor was filled with Italian gondolas and a “Welcome Carnival Firenze” sign in the red, white, and green colors of the Italian flag, with many on land also waving a warm welcome.

Carnival Firenze Cruise Ship Handover

Following the naming celebration, Carnival Firenze will jump into its busy season, embarking on its inaugural cruise on April 25. The 7-night cruise will travel on a round-trip voyage to Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

As the 27th fun ship in Carnival’s fleet, guests will find traditional Carnival favorites like Camp Ocean, Circle C, and Club O2 for kids and teens; the all-ages WaterWorks waterpark and SportSquare recreation area; and the adult-only Serenity Retreat and Cloud 9 Spa. 

Read Also: What Cruise Lines Does Carnival Own?

As an Italian-style ship, it will also feature special touches like the exclusive Terrazza Moda lounge for the upscale Terrazza experience, a Piazza Duomo-themed entrance, and Italian décor, dining, and entertainment mixed with other Carnival signatures. For example, even Guy’s Burger Joint will offer a touch of Italian flair.

Carnival Firenze will continue to offer 4- to 7-night roundtrip cruises throughout the year, with additional calls in Ensenada, Mexico, and Catalina Island, California, just off the coast of Southern California.

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