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Degas Deck is where all the action is. All the way aft, offering wonderful views over land and sea is the attractive Flamenco Ballroom, seating 220 in comfort. Italian designer Guido Canali once again did wonders here. First, there is a gigantic dance floor occupying the midsection of the room. Then, there are restful seating areas on both side. And finally, a lively bar area occupies the rear end of the room. Wonderful!

With extra deck height and a wall of windows, the public rooms on Degas Deck all have a very spacious feel to them. To soften the somewhat stark look of the Flamenco Ballroom, the designers have provided some greenery, which oddly is placed right in front of the windows blocking views from most seats. OK, it looks nice, but is it practical? The same can be said of the off-white, high-backed chairs. Very Italian, sure; but how often is the can of stain remover taken out?

Flamenco Ballroom

Directly forward of the Flamenco Ballroom, a spacious lobby with eye-catching artwork on walls and ceiling leads to the Montmartre Restaurant one deck down. Instead of going down for lunch (again), we walk forward and pass through the Monte Carlo Casino. Located right in the main passageway running the length of the ship, the gaming action here can get very lively.

Another spacious lobby overlooks the Main Lobby down on Lautrec Deck, with Photo Galleries on both the starboard and port sides. An excellent arrangement which, just like the Casino will generate the best possible revenue for the cruise line as both places are hard to pass by. Further forward is the Murano Bar, named after the island in the Venetian archipelago famous for its glasswork. With lifesaving equipment blocking the view, most of the daylight streams in through oversized portholes which grant an underwater view into the swimming pool. A unique glass "canal" on the Pool Deck directly above the bar brings more daylight into the room and all in all this room is a most successful and novel shipboard creation. Seating is in alcoves - much like a train, which enhances intimacy. The bar staff is very friendly and service-minded here and I would definitely add Costa Allegra's Murano Bar to my list of most unusual shipboard spaces.  

Flamenco Ballroom

Flamenco Ballroom
Flamenco Ballroom
Monte Carlo Casino
Murano Bar

Flamenco Ballroom

Flamenco Ballroom

Flamenco Ballroom
Monte Carlo Casino
Murano Bar
Murano Bar
Murano Bar

 

All photos and text: 2004-2005 Bart de Boer - www.ShipParade.com

First published on May 29, 2005

All rights reserved.