An Italian cruise liner company, affiliated to U.S. Carnival Corp. and PLC Group, world largest cruise firm, has opened a regular route from Hong Kong to Vietnam stopping at Sanya city in China's southernmost Hainan Province.
The crew of the Allegra liner celebrated on Thursday when she anchored at Sanya Phoenix Island International Cruise Terminal on her maiden voyage.
The liner, belonging to Costa Crociere S.P.A., will call at Sanya six times a month for a ten-hour stop.
The Hainan branch of China Youth Travel Service (CYTS), the country's largest tourism agency, said it had been authorized to provide tourism programs to passengers.
It is the first regular sea route via Sanya run by a luxury passenger liner since 2004, local authorities said.
(Xinhua News Agency November 10, 2006)