Disney’s new Disney Dream will easily score Cruise Critic’s title of “2011’s most innovative ship” when it debuts in January. It’ll have cruising’s first “water coaster,” inventive virtual portholes to illuminate inside cabins, and the Enchanted Garden restaurant, where, presumably, the décor – with light fixture flowers that actually bloom – will trump the food. Unlike posits of most other cruise lines, Disney’s main theater productions really are Broadway quality.
No question, the cruise line arm of the global behemoth-of-Walt, starting with Disney Magic over a decade ago, is every bit a game changer in the industry as Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line.
For sure, even its interpretation of the usually sedate “float out” stage in ship-building, was unique; this weekend’s ceremony featured the first fireworks I’ve ever seen at a shipyard (check out our report).
Its ships are resort destinations in themselves. Service is superb, entertainment is top-notch, the kids’ programs engage young passengers (which means they’re not running around wild), and Disney’s got the most intriguing shore excursion menu in the business. But it seems to me that unless you’re a hardcore Disney-ite to begin with, a lot of “regular” cruise travelers give its ships a miss (and conversely, it can be hard for veteran Disney passengers to switch to more mainstream lines).
If you haven’t cruised on Disney yet, will Dream’s innovations tempt you? Or does the influence of the Mousian empire, complete with Goofy, Mickey, Minnie and the like, scare you off?