Costa Victoria to Langkawi and Penang (Part 1)

We just returned from our 5 days, 4 nights cruise holiday on board the Costa Victoria last week. It’s been a while since we took Sophie along with us on a holiday so we wanted to take things slow and go at a more leisurely pace so a cruise sounded like an ideal family vacation.

The Costa Victoria is an Italian-themed cruise liner and it is the largest from Costa Cruises to sail in Asia. The cruise liner under went an extensive refurbishment in 2004 where additional balconies were added. At maximum capacity, she can accommodate close to 2,400 guests.

We boarded the ship at around 5pm from the new Marina Bay Cruise Centre on Saturday.

The view of our cabin

We opted for the most basic cabin and our room was on Deck 6A. For a family of three, I found the room a bit of a squeeze as there was hardly any space for our luggage. Thankfully, we’re usually not too fussy about our rooms since we reckon that we’ll be out of our cabin most of the time.

Alexis was very excited at the overhead bunk. But we decided against Sophie sleeping on top as I didn’t want to risk having my face squashed if Sophie rolled down the night as she’s capable of turning and tossing when she’s asleep.

About 20 minutes after we settled down, we had to assemble for a mandatory safety drill where all passengers had to familiarise ourselves with the safety procedures on board.

I’ve never been on any cruise before, but I felt that the safety drill was not very well organised. Due to the different nationalities on board, after the assembling at the meeting point, we still had to wait till all the instructions had been given in the 4 languages before we were dismissed. By then, a lot of the seniors were getting impatient and felt stuffy from the heat.

At dinner time, passengers are split between the Sinfonia Restaurant or Fantasia Restaurant for an ala carte sit down dinner. There are two timings for dinner, where the earlier time slot starts at around 6:15pm and the second starting around 9:00pm.

We were given assigned table numbers and was served by our dedicated waitress. There is usually a choice of 2-3 items for appetisers, soup, main course and desserts depending on the theme for the day. If you prefer a more fancy dinner, there is also an option to dine at the II Magnifico Club Restaurant where there’s a fixed men priced of USD$33.


After dinner, we went to check out and register Sophie for the Squok Club – a kids club for those aged between 3 to 11 years old. We were given an introduction on the activities and were given a program sheet containing a schedule of the activities for the next few days.

Unfortunately, I started feeling ill as I boarded with a bad sore throat and cough and decided to retreat for the night.

The next day, I was still feeling ill and had Alexis take Sophie round the ship to explore on their own. These are some of the facilities.

The jacuzzi and swimming pool.

We expected the pool to be more child-friendly but the 2 pools were very small without any slides or play area. It was a real pity as Sophie didn’t even get to swim as Alexis and I both took turns to fall sick. A real shame I know.

The casino

I was surprised to find the casino right in the middle of the walk ways so it’s easily accessible to everyone including children although I’m pretty sure that they will ask you not to bring your kids there. There were slot machines and tables for mahjong, black jack, etc.

 Sun bathing deck on deck 11 and deck 12

The second evening was the Gala Night, where we got dressed to the nines and attended the cocktail with the Captain at the Festival Theatre.

 Alexis sipping on champagne while Sophie had a fruit punch

We were entertained by a singer on the piano while some of the passengers got on their feet and waltzed on stage. After a round of introduction from the Captain on his key crew staff and a toast we headed for dinner. That night, the restaurant had a more sophisticated menu which was more fitting for the evening.


 From top left:

Insalata Caprese, Caprese salad with tomato and mozzarella. Consomme di manzo, Beef consomme with tomato, celery and chives. Lasagna all Emiliana, lasagna with meat ragout Emiliana style. Sorbet, Pineapple and honey dew sorbet

The dishes were generally a little too salty for my liking and I forgot to take a picture of my main course which was a BBQ chicken. Frankly, I was less than impressed with the food and found most dishes to be too salty for my palate. But I do like the variety that they offered and the standard of food did seem to improve over the days so my tastebuds might have been affected by a bout of fever and flu.


Sadly, I was still feeling unwell and started to get the shivers after dinner and so I bade the night good night and had an early night. This is turning out to be a real resting trip for me as I spent more time in the cabins than anywhere else on the cruise.

More of my review on the Costa Victoria to follow on Thursday.

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Comments: 6

  1. asia cruiser November 27, 2012 at 10:14 pm Reply

    thank for sharing, very detailed report..looking forward to more photo.

  2. Dee November 29, 2012 at 10:19 am Reply

    We went on a cruise with Star Virgo in Aug 2011. My hub and I were sick. The worst was my second day, I couldn’t eat. Everything I ate, I vomitted even my medicine. Thank God Dot is as happy as a lark! 🙂

    Enjoy your trip to London! 🙂

    • Susan November 29, 2012 at 11:48 am Reply

      The young ones are tough! Makes travelling more enjoyable.

  3. lisacng @ December 5, 2012 at 3:23 am Reply

    Sorry you and Alexis were both feeling sick :). Nice sized cabin though! We went on a cruise, pre-J, and it was fun for a few days but wish we spent more time on land 😉

  4. Christina Yap February 25, 2017 at 5:47 pm Reply

    Hi Susan,
    I’ve a few questions here for you, would appreciate if u can share your experience on this cruise
    I shall be taking the cruise with my grand-children this December.
    1) Does the ship have water dispensers & are they easily accessible.
    2) I plan to leave the kids on board with the staff while I go on those off-shore excursions, is it safe? will they be taken good care of? (in terms of safety & food)
    3) It states in their facilities that they have self-service laundry, is it correct?
    4) Are basic toiletry & towels provided in the cabin?
    Thank you for your time in answering to my queries.

    • Susan February 26, 2017 at 11:56 pm Reply

      Hi Christina,
      Thanks for dropping by. As this was some years back, I’ll try my best to answer them.
      1) I really can’t remember about this. You may want to drop them an email to ask about it.
      2) While I think it’s okay to leave the kids there for activities, I don’t recommend doing so when you’re off the cruise for an off-shore excursions. The staff may need to contact you and I personally don’t think it’s a good idea to be so far away from the kids.
      3) I didn’t use that service and frankly can’t remember if they provided that service
      4) Yes, they do provide toiletry & towels in the cabins
      Hope it helps in some ways.

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