As part of Disney’s Earmarked Conference 2012, three Fairy Godmothers sailed on the newest ship, the Disney Fantasy for a 3-night Preview Cruise March 23 – 26, 2012. In our group were Teresa, the “head pixie”, Siriann and Laura. It was truly a great opportunity to be able to experience the new ship so we can better serve our guests.
The adventure began as the three of us loaded into a Disney Cruise Line motor coach that carried us to the port in true Disney fashion. These are the same motor coaches available for ground transfers to any guest arriving at the Orlando International Airport or staying at the Walt Disney World Resort.
During the ride to Port Canaveral, where the Disney terminal is located, guests are treated to a video showing all the things you need to know about boarding the ship and what is available once you’re onboard. As you get very near to the terminal you can see the ship in the distance and the closer you get the better the view. The final turn brings you round so you can see which Disney character graces the stern and for the new Disney Fantasy it is Dumbo in full flight.
You can play "who sees the ship first" game just like you do for the castle at the parks.
As you walk into the terminal you can’t help but notice how light it is with white tile floors and windows that reach from floor to ceiling.
In the center of the terminal is a model of the Disney ship, with one side cutaway so you can see the inside. It is here where we met our first celebrity, Captain Mickey Mouse.
Checking in for our cruise was easy and painless because we had all completed most of our documentation online. I highly recommend doing this as it saves time and means fewer pieces of paper for you to carry. The only paper document we needed was the Method of Payment Signature form and our government issued passports. We didn’t even have to have an additional photo taken by the ship staff for their computer system because they magically had them stored in the system already. One less step means we were on the ship even quicker! As we approached the gangway we had the first photo op with the Fantasy photo staff. It was nice to see Andre, a Cast Member I’d met on the Micechat Cruise in October on the Disney Dream. As you approach entry onto the ship, the Cast Member asks your family’s name so we were announced as Fairy Godmother Travel as we each got our first look at this gorgeous ship!
The Atrium is just magnificent! Your eyes are immediately drawn to the opulent chandelier with the Swaroski crystals and blue, green, rose and beige colored glass.
You notice the swirl effect that is mimicked in the carpeting under your feet when you realize it’s a peacock’s tail feathers. The feathers extend up the grand staircase to Deck 4 where the bright plumes end at the balcony overlooking the Atrium. You will notice how the curved line is distinctly in view following one of the concepts behind Art Nouveau, which is the style of design featured on the Disney Fantasy. Art Nouveau was a style of decoration and art prominent in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which depicted flowers, leaves, nature with flowing curved lines.
After the initial “WOW” the three of us jerked back to reality. We hadn’t eaten since early that morning and Teresa had a meeting to attend as part of the conference. Quickly we dropped our day bags in the stateroom and headed for some lunch.
Siriann and Laura headed to Deck 11 for the buffet at Cabanas, while Teresa headed to Enchanted Garden. Cabanas is very similar to the restaurant of the same name on the Dream; a vast buffet on the day of arrival. There was a variety of options for everyone, including low carb, low fat, no sugar added, veggies, and meats. Some of the items sampled were grilled swordfish, grilled lamp chops, mushroom pasta, pasta with marinara sauce, cooked carrots and snow peas, chilled shrimp, chilled crab claws, steamed oysters, macaroni & cheese, assorted rolls, assorted soups and salad fixings, pizza, etc. Cabanas is a great place when you want to try a little of everything! The food quality is always good and you can find something for everyone here!
In addition to grabbing some lunch we wanted to grab some spa time and a reservation for either Remy or Palo. Teresa was able to get a brunch reservation for our group at Palo while Siriann and Laura secured the Rainforest Treatment for the group. Then it was off to see the room for a bit and get ready for the required Life Boat Drill.
The lifeboat drills on the Disney ships no longer require wearing the bulky life vests--Hurrah!
To be continued with many more pictures!