There were no qualms in heading for the open Atlantic in early December, to cross to the Caribbean on her own bottom. El Leon left the shipyard's dock in Viareggio, Italy, on December 1, 2018, making stops in Gibraltar, the Canary Islands and Cape Verde for fueling, provisioning and the like. On December 11, she left Cape Verde in her wake. Even with "well-formed swell waves further strengthened by the constant trade winds," Costa says, "the yacht impressed us with her great comfort, stability and performances. I kept an average speed of approximately 14 knots." A few hours after sunset on December 17 in Bridgetown, Barbados, El Leon was setting her anchor in the harbor "with enough fuel in our tanks to relaxedly enjoy our first Caribbean cruise."