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From A Galaxy Far, Far Away To
The Disney Dream
by Georgina Cruz
sailed on the Disney Dream in late October, and found that
everything from “fairy-godmothers-in-training” to the Force was with
us. Traditionally, when cruise ships go into dry dock as the Disney
Dream did Oct. 4-24, a transformation occurs with interiors enhanced
and refreshed. But when it comes to Disney Cruise Line ships, they
also invariably get, well, you might say a generous dose of magic.
Enhancements—and magical features—added to the ship during her
dry dock in Freeport, Bahamas, include a “Force-”filled Star Wars
interactive play area as well as Disney Infinity interactive
adventures in youth spaces. Also, a whimsical sweet shop serving
handmade gelato, candy and other goodies; the popular Bibbidi
Bobbidi Boutique staffed by “fairy-godmothers-in-training,” and an
expanded adults-only retreat have been put on the Disney Dream,
which is Disney Cruise Line’s third ship, launched in 2010 (she is a
sister ship to the Disney Fantasy, launched two years later).
Arguably the most popular addition with young sailors, which has
them exclaiming “wow!” and “awesome!” as they see it, is the Star
Wars area, a newly themed out-of-this-world space in Disney’s
Oceaneer Club, located on Deck 5 and open to children 3 to 12. Kids
are transported to a faraway galaxy at Star Wars: Millennium Falcon,
a “Force”-filled play area that is inspired by the spacecraft from
the legendary saga—oh, to be young again: many an adult will be
wondering if he or she can still pass for 12! But, no worries,
adults can visit the space during Open Houses held on each cruise.
Upon entering the “spaceship,” youngsters join the Rebel Alliance in
the epic battle of good versus evil by assisting with the navigation
of this “powerful space vehicle.” Sitting in the cockpit, children
can pilot this super-cool spaceship through hyperspace and trigger
light-speed jumps to different locations around the galaxy.
In this new Star Wars area, as of now exclusive to the Disney Dream,
children can also express their creativity through themed crafts,
games and activities. They can also watch episodes from the new
Disney XD animated series, “Star Wars Rebels,” on a large screen or
virtually join the rebellion at gaming stations featuring the
action-packed adventures. And that is not all: the excitement
continues during a shipboard version of the popular Jedi Training
Academy experience available in Disney parks. This activity invites
young Jedi hopefuls—known as “Padawans”—to learn lightsaber
moves from a Jedi Master. They can use the “Force” to magically move
with gestures a barrel and crates as well as face the evil Darth
Another novelty located in the Oceaneer Club is a hightech
interactive space based on the Disney Infinity video game. In this
area, children can experience a variety of virtual experiences and
activities. Customized, onscreen adventures bring to life
characters and stories from across The Walt Disney Company. The
complete set of Disney Infinity character figures is on display for
creative inspiration and available for game play. Kids visiting this
room—found only on the Disney Dream—are able to unlock exclusive
Disney Cruise Line content that they can continue to enjoy when
playing Disney Infinity at home. Special activities bring the
virtual game play experience to life in the real world and include a
life-sized Disney Infinity Base that sets a stage where children
take the place of character figures like Donald Duck and Maleficent
for gaming experiences. The interactive floor lights up in response
to game play on a large screen.
The new Star Wars and Disney Infinity areas replace the Monster’s
Academy and Disney’s Explorer Pod. The Oceaneer Club still retains
its popular Andy’s Room and Pixie Hollow spaces themed to the “Toy
Story” movies and fairies respectively.
Another new Disney Dream feature, and one that is tempting to young,
old and to everyone in between, is Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats, a
specialty sweet shop on Deck 11. It aims to satisfy the taste buds
of cruisers of all ages, with handmade gelato (yum!) and ice cream,
an assortment of candy, and novelty treats for purchase (a scoop of
gelato is $2.95; of ice cream is $2.50; there is still free ice
cream dispensers at Eye Scream on Deck 11, and I imagine many
families, particularly large ones will be heading to Eye Scream, as
gelato for six at Vanellope’s will set them back $17.70 each time).
Vanellope’s lures with the smell of freshly baked waffle cones and
candy. It has two entrances, one inside Cabana’s (the ship’s casual
buffet-style restaurant) and another one outside by the pool deck.
It replaces the ship’s game arcade—probably not as relevant now
that everyone has gaming in their phones and other devices.
Vanellope’s is inspired in the whimsical candy land of the Sugar
Rush racecar game in the animated movie hit “Wreck-It Ralph.” Its
decor features nods to the film, including a racetrack and
checkerboard patterned floor, gas-pump-style gumball dispensers, Vanellope’s race car and King Candy’s throne.
Other fun features added to the Disney Dream during her fall dry
dock include the Funnel Puddle family wading pool and the
Muppets-themed Midship Detective Agency game, “The Case of the
Stolen Show.” The latter is an interactive ship-wide game during
which participants uncover clues and solve a mystery using a
“detective badge” that activates a gallery of surprises in
(artwork that becomes animated when someone stands in front of it)
all around the ship.
Yet another magical addition to the ship is the Bibbidi Bobbidi
Boutique, located on Deck 5 midship. This special salon was first
introduced on sister ship Disney Fantasy when that ship debuted in
2012 and has proven to be very popular with would-be princesses,
knights and pirates. The Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique (named after the
magic words of the famous spell cast by Cinderella’s fairy godmother
in the classic animated film, “Cinderella”) can bring to life the
storybook fantasies of young sailors with pixie-dusted and
piratical makeovers (a variety of packages that can include hair,
makeup, outfit, and accessories is available for purchase). Staffed
by “fairy-godmothers-in-training,” it offers aspiring princesses and
knights ages 3 to 12 the chance to transform into royalty. On pirate
party night (featured once in every Disney Dream sailing) this
boutique becomes The Pirates League where swashbuckling pirates of
all ages have the opportunity to unleash their inner buccaneer. One
of our grandsons opted for a pirate costume and face paint including
a scar and beard when he was 8 years old while sailing on the Disney
Fantasy—it was a hit with him, the rest of the family, and friends
he’d made on the ship!
In the Disney Dream makeover, adults have not been forgotten. Now
there is an enhanced adults-only retreat on Deck 13 forward. This
area now includes a new water feature, Satellite Falls (also
introduced with the Disney Fantasy). Satellite Falls is a circular
splash pool with benches and a gently falling rain curtain that
provides cool comfort. Around this upper deck, guests 18 and over
can soak up the sun in loungers or relax in the shade under a
canopy. It is downright magical particularly in the tropical sun, if
you ask me. Also new is the Senses Juice Bar in the Senses Spa on
Deck 11. It offers juices, protein shakes, energy shakes, and
made-to-order smoothies for purchase.
Nightlife enthusiasts will find décor enhancements including new
carpets and high-tech upgrades at the ship’s nightclubs and lounges:
687 Pub, Pink, the District Lounge and Skyline.
These new spaces and enhancements to the Disney Dream debuted on the
Oct. 26, 2015 four-night voyage from Port Canaveral to the Bahamas
and Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay. The ship will continue to
sail 3 and 4-night cruises from Port Canaveral to the Bahamas
throughout 2015 and into 2016. From Port Canaveral, rates start at
$480 per person for 3-night cruises and $640 per person for 4-night
cruises for a standard inside stateroom, based on double occupancy.
Pricing reflects a category 11C standard inside stateroom.
Government taxes and fees, gratuities and Port Adventures are not
included in the fares.
For more information, visit
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