Now, in what has to be one of the most significant, quantifiable examples of a cruise industry back on the move, Costa Cruises laid the first block of the hull of new Costa Diadema, the future flagship of the line and the largest Italian-flagged cruise ship ever built.

Coming in at 496 tons, and measuring 51.5 feet wide by 95 feet long, the block was lifted into place in the  Fincantieri dry dock where the ship will be built.

“The construction of the Costa Diadema is a tangible commitment to the future growth of our company,” said Michael Thamm, CEO of Costa Crociere S.p.A. in a statement.

Tags: costa, italy
Photo Credit: A photo of Costa's 2009 ship, the Costa Deliziosa. Rich Tucker / Flickr.com