Costa Victoria has departed the Naples city harbour ©FISU

The cruise ships which provided a unique Athletes' Village at the 2019 International University Sports Federation Summer Universiade have left their temporary station in Naples.

More than 4,000 athletes enjoyed a floating village experience of spending two weeks on MSC Lirica and Costa Victoria while competing at the 30th Universiade.

Leonardo Massa, country manager of cruise ship owners MSC Crociere, expressed his delight at the experience his luxurious vessels offered.

"MSC allowed athletes to appreciate the extraordinary "Made in Italy" hospitality offered on our ships, with a Neapolitan twist," Massa said.

"The last aspect was a big source of pride for us as MSC originated in this city, so being able to contribute to the success of an event that highlighted the potential of Naples was a great joy for us.

"We put our passion for the sea and hospitality, creating a relaxing and cheerful atmosphere, in addition to offering high-level services. 

"The great satisfaction of our guests was our reward.

“We hope Naples will soon host other events such as this, able to emphasise our beauties as well as the extraordinary organisational skills proven."

The 2019 Summer Universiade's Athletes' Village was given a grand unveiling at Stazione Maritima in Naples ©Getty Images
The 2019 Summer Universiade's Athletes' Village was given a grand unveiling at Stazione Maritima in Naples ©Getty Images

Around 20,000 meals were served daily, with the Costa Victoria hosting a special pizza corner.

MSC Lirica offered a typical Neapolitan menu comprising dishes from ragu to eggplant, "caprese" cake to "pastiera".

Mario Alovisi, vice-president of revenue management, itinerary and transportation with Costa Crociere, added: "It has been an honour for us to actively participate in this beautiful event.

"During the over two weeks on board of our cruise ship, we prepared more than 144,000 meals, offering the typical Italian hospitality to about 1,900 athletes and officials from 38 delegations.

“It has been an important task for our company, but we are satisfied with the results achieved and with the victories of the athletes we hosted and everybody else’s.”

"Now Costa Victoria is back sailing the Mediterranean Sea, but the whole crew and people involved in the event will keep the memories of this unique and unforgettable experience which, I am sure, they shared with our guests.”