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Old 09-10-2013, 05:07 PM   #16
Lisa Lisa
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Originally Posted by LocaRoja View Post
Lisa, Love seeing the pictures of your Cat T room! It was nice to meet you last week in the conceirge lounge. I'm looking forward to reliving the cruise in your trip report.
It was great meeting you and your DS! How was your re-entry to real life? Mine was a little rough, but writing this TR is definitely helping me recapture the magic a bit.
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:02 PM   #17
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Enjoying your report! Of my six DCL cruises, only one has been with our daughter...that was back in 2000 when she was 13. We enjoy the laid-back adult life!
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:32 PM   #18
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Enjoying your report! Of my six DCL cruises, only one has been with our daughter...that was back in 2000 when she was 13. We enjoy the laid-back adult life!
Hi Cindy. I like your statistics! This will definitely not be our last adults-only cruise. If not next year, then definitely in 2015!
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
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Old 09-11-2013, 02:43 PM   #19
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Great trip report, we are trying to figure out what cat to book. Loved the pictures of your room. Do you think concierge is worth the extra money?
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Old 09-12-2013, 07:21 AM   #20
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Great trip report, we are trying to figure out what cat to book. Loved the pictures of your room. Do you think concierge is worth the extra money?
This is always a tough question since it's so subjective. Given the occasion we were celebrating and the price we paid, it was worth it for us. We never even considered booking a cat T at the "rack rate" (over $5,000). That's just more than we're comfortable spending for a 4-night cruise. If you're comfortable with the price for a cat V or cat T, then I would go for it. We absolutely loved our room and having use of the lounge. Did we need those things? No, but we took full advantage of them and enjoyed them tremendously. I don't see us booking concierge in the future unless we luck into a really good deal. We will try to upgrade at port again, though, although we know that upgrades are not always available.
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014
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Old 09-12-2013, 08:33 AM   #21
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Happy anniversary! Love your report!

Curious about your upgrade? We will be on the Dream next August 21st, 3 day. We are already booked in Cat V. You mentioned that you thought the upgraded should be about $1500. Is that price based on the just the cabin or number of passengers.

I just started thinking that maybe we could upgraded to CAt T. There are 4 of us. I am wondering what the price would be to upgrade. We are currently paying $2700, which I thought was great.

Thanks in advance for any insight.
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:26 AM   #22
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Wednesday, 9/4: Day 4 (Sea Day)

Day 4 Navigator

Our sea day dawned clear and calm. It was amazing how calm the ocean was for this entire cruise. I am very prone to motion sickness so I continued taking a Bonine each morning, but I very seldom felt the ship move. We had a reservation for Palo brunch at 10:00, so we decided to sleep in and take our time getting going. When we left our room, we found a Magical Moment certificate with two "Happy Anniversary" pins in our starfish mail holder. Gotta love Disney!



Palo Brunch

We stopped in the lounge for some coffee and then headed to Palo. We had Sasa for our waiter again, and he seated us at a table near the windows. He offered us a complimentary glass of prosecco or a mimosa, and we both went with mimosas. Once we finished our drinks, Sasa took us over to the buffet for a tour. The buffet area is very compact, but there were many, many tasty looking choices. The hot entrees that are cooked to order were on display as well. DH and I both filled our plates from the buffet and then headed to the table. Sasa gave us some time to get started, and then he stopped by to see what hot entrees we wanted to order. DH wanted eggs and decided on the Eggs Julia, which are similar to eggs benedict but with salmon. We both love chicken parmesan, and after everything we've read about Palo's version, we both had to have our own orders. I knew I wanted to try the grape and gorgonzola pizza, but Sasa recommended that we go with half grape and gorgonzola, and half sundried tomato and goat cheese. We both preferred the grape and gorgonzola, but half was plenty considering all the other food we had eaten! The chicken parmesan was everything we had heard it would be. So, so good. We went back to the buffet one more time for some desserts. There were lots of choices available, and we liked the fact that they were all miniature in size. We were pretty full at that point, but I think we each managed to try at least three different desserts. We were presented with another Happy Anniversary plate to finish off the meal, and as an added bonus I actually remembered my camera this time!



The Concierge Sundeck

Once we had finished at Palo, we headed back to the room to change and get ready to hit the Quiet Cove pool area. Unfortunately, the area around the pool and the pool itself were absolutely packed. We walked around deck 12 a little bit and then decided to try the concierge sundeck, which is on deck 13. You can access the sundeck either through the lounge (via a flight of stairs), or using doors on either side of the forward part of the sundeck. (The card reader on one of the deck 13 doors was not working during our cruise.) There was no one using the sundeck when we arrived. In fact, aside from a couple of people who stopped in briefly and left, there was really only one other couple who used the sundeck all day. It was pretty hot up there, but there's a shower in one corner and we were in and out of it frequently. There is also a round bench area with misters in the middle that helped with the heat. We couldn't figure out how to turn it on, so we had to go down to the lounge and ask Annie-Marie to help us. The sundeck is also equipped with a variety of sunscreens as well as Evian facial misters. At one point during the afternoon, the CM who had been popping in periodically to tidy up came around with cold washcloths. At that point the sundeck was the most crowded it would get all day, with six people!





The Rainforest Room

After a couple of hours on the sundeck, we decided that we should head down to the spa and visit the Rainforest Room. I had purchased two 1-day passes months before the cruise, but we had not made it over there yet. The RR was fairly crowded when we arrived. There were several people in the sensory showers area and the heated tile loungers were all taken. As we were looking through the glass door, though, we saw two people gathering their things to leave. We spent 10-15 minutes in the loungers, and then decided to check out the showers. There are four different showers, each with several settings complete with custom lighting, sound, and even scents (unless we were hallucinating that part!). We spent about 20 minutes going from shower to shower and then headed over to the saunas. There are four different types of saunas, three of which were too hot for me! I sat in the other one with DH for a few minutes, and then I headed back to the showers while he tried out the remaining three. We would have liked to spend more time in the tile loungers before we left, but once again they were all full. There are two hot tubs on a verandah outside the tile lounger area, but there were people in them both times we checked. They're fairly small (nothing like the ones in the family pool area and the Quiet Cove), so we didn't feel comfortable using them when other people were in them. We both showered in the changing rooms and then headed back to the concierge sundeck for more lounging.

For those wondering, you can purchase day passes either in advance or during the cruise. Length-of-cruise passes can only be purchased on the ship. I paid $16 each for the day passes. The day 1 Navigator for our cruise advertised the price of a couples length-of-cruise pass for $144.00 and a single pass for $101.00. My understanding is that these passes include scrubs, but IMO that does not make up for the difference in price. We could have bought four 1-day passes for the two of us for $128.00. To purchase day passes in advance, go to the Planning Center on DCL's web site and choose "In-Room Gifts & Shopping," and then select Port Canaveral as your port. Rainforest 1-Day Passes are listed near the bottom under "Spa & Merchandise Pre-Purchase Options." You can either fax or mail the order form, or you can call DCL at 800-601-8455. There will be a card in your room on arrival confirming your purchase.

We spent the next couple of hours back and forth between the sundeck and the adult pool. We walked around the corner to Currents for a couple of beers because, as far as we could tell, there was no bar service on the sundeck. We had brought DH's souvenir beer mug back with us and had purchased another for me on the first day. The cost of the 22 oz mug is $14.95, and you can get refills for the cost of a standard 16 oz draft. I don't want to split hairs, but I tested it at home and the mug holds closer to 20 oz. Still, 20 oz for the price of 16 is a deal, and the mugs make great souvenirs! At the end of the day, we traded our mugs in for beer tokens (which are actually cards now) so we wouldnt have to pack the glass mugs. We'll be on the Fantasy for spring break next year and will take our tokens with us.



At around 4:30, we decided we'd had enough sun for the day. We headed back to the room to shower and then we hit the lounge for cocktail hour. We each had two drinks and a couple of light snacks and then left the lounge and walked around the ship for a little while. We stopped by Shutters while we were out to look at our photos. One of my beefs with Shutters is that they seem to print most photos only in the 8x10 size. I personally don't care for large pictures, so I never buy the 8x10s. Even if they'd had a smaller size, it would have been 6x8. I still can't figure out what that size is all about! There was a decent photo from our first dinner at Palo and a good one from our second dinner. In retrospect, I should have asked whether I could buy just one or two photos on a CD since I liked our embarkation photo as well. Then I could have printed 5x7s at home, although they would both have had borders. For those who aren't aware, when you purchase photos on a CD, they all have borders. In some cases I actually like the borders, but other times I find that they're too busy and detract from the photo. I wish they provided them both ways on the CDs. After we left Shutters, we headed back to the room to do some packing. As soon as we had closed the door, the doorbell rang. It was Andy, one of the concierge hosts, stopping by to deliver our limited-edition lithograph. I had forgotten all about this concierge perk until that moment. It's called "Drenched in Fun with Daisy and Donald" and is 16" x 20". It came complete with a certificate of authenticity and a note from the concierge team thanking us for sailing with them. Surprisingly, the lithograph made it home in our large checked bag unscathed. Now I just need to have it framed and find the right place for it!



Dinner at Remy

Our anniversary is on September 5th (disembarkation day), so we had designated the 4th as the day we would officially celebrate. I had made a reservation at Remy for 7:40 when our booking window opened at 90 days out. I got a little nervous about the time when we received the letter in our room the previous night reminding us that we had to have our luggage out by 10:30 to participate in the onboard airline check-in program. I called Remy to see if they could take us a bit earlier, and they very graciously told us that we could come whenever we were ready. We stopped in the lounge for a couple of photos and then headed to Remy at about 7:10. We were seated right away and introduced to our waiter, Sylvain. After chatting with us for a few minutes, he prepared Remy's signature cocktail for each of us. It's called the Colette after the female lead in Ratatouille. Sylvain started by placing a blueberry and a mint leaf in each glass, followed by champagne, and then pear-infused vodka. Finally, he dropped a small piece of candied apricot in the bottom. The vodka had taken the fizz out of the champagne, but when he added the apricot it sent a stream of bubbles straight up through the glass. A cool effect and a very tasty drink!

Sylvain explained the menu and asked whether we wanted to order one or both of the chefs' tasting menus or would prefer to order a la carte. When we told him that we wanted to try the chefs' menus, he recommended that I try the French menu and DH try the American menu. That ended up working out really well except for one of the early courses, which we traded. I can't remember all the things we ate because there was a constant stream of dishes arriving at the table. I will say that we enjoyed everything that was put in front of us and agreed that the $75/person upcharge was well worth it given the quality of both the food and the overall experience. We opted not to go with the $99/person wine pairings and instead ordered by the glass. That brings me to sort of a funny incident. The sommelier came over early on to introduce himself and go over the wine choices with us. He had a velvet bag with him. When we told him that we had decided not to order the wine pairings, he said "Oh, then I will not be showing you what is inside here." We thought he was kidding, but after taking our by-the-glass order, he turned and left the table with his mysterious velvet bag still cinched closed. Hmmph! After dessert (IMO the one somewhat weak link in the meal), we were presented with a gorgeous hand-decorated plate and some delicious chocolates and other treats to take with us. Remy was the perfect place to celebrate our anniversary, but this is not something we'll be doing on every cruise.



After leaving Remy, we stopped by the concierge lounge for our nightly decaf espresso drinks and then headed back to the room to finish packing (and begin mourning the end of the cruise). Benny had been leaving great towel animals throughout the trip, but tonight's was our favorite:



Next up: Disembarkation and Miscellaneous Info
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014

Last edited by Lisa Lisa; 09-25-2013 at 08:53 AM.
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Old 09-12-2013, 10:40 AM   #23
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Happy anniversary! Love your report!

Curious about your upgrade? We will be on the Dream next August 21st, 3 day. We are already booked in Cat V. You mentioned that you thought the upgraded should be about $1500. Is that price based on the just the cabin or number of passengers.

I just started thinking that maybe we could upgraded to CAt T. There are 4 of us. I am wondering what the price would be to upgrade. We are currently paying $2700, which I thought was great.

Thanks in advance for any insight.
Thanks for reading and for the anniversary wishes! The cost of the upgrade is the same regardless of the number of people in your room, so the more people you have the better the deal. The cost to upgrade from a V to a T should be considerably less than the cost to upgrade from a lower category (we were going all the way up from a 7A). Your cruise will probably be more crowded than ours was since many schools will not have started yet. I'd keep an eye on DCL's web site to see how many cat Ts are available as your sail date gets closer. If there are some left and you get to port early, you should have a decent shot at snagging one. Good luck!
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:24 AM   #24
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Thanks for reading and for the anniversary wishes! The cost of the upgrade is the same regardless of the number of people in your room, so the more people you have the better the deal. The cost to upgrade from a V to a T should be considerably less than the cost to upgrade from a lower category (we were going all the way up from a 7A). Your cruise will probably be more crowded than ours was since many schools will not have started yet. I'd keep an eye on DCL's web site to see how many cat Ts are available as your sail date gets closer. If there are some left and you get to port early, you should have a decent shot at snagging one. Good luck!
Thanks...so much for your insight....I will keep a look out next summer....it would be a dream to be in. Cat T
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:55 AM   #25
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Lisa I'm loving your trip report and happy belated anniversary to you and your DH! You guys make a great looking couple

I think I do remember "seeing" you in Palo. We were a few minutes early to our 10:30am brunch and we had Maria I believe. It's terrible, I can't remember her name off the top of my brain, but pretty sure it was Maria. I know she comes recommended and she was from Romania.

So nice to see the TR from someone else's perspective and I agree - extremely calms seas this cruise.

Did you guys decide on the Med? I remember you were playing around with that? I see your Spring Break cruise is near mine and by my estimation we are on the sailing right before you so we are close again!

Looking forward to hearing and seeing more!

Heather
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Old 09-13-2013, 11:35 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by IBelieveInTheMagic View Post
Lisa I'm loving your trip report and happy belated anniversary to you and your DH! You guys make a great looking couple

I think I do remember "seeing" you in Palo. We were a few minutes early to our 10:30am brunch and we had Maria I believe. It's terrible, I can't remember her name off the top of my brain, but pretty sure it was Maria. I know she comes recommended and she was from Romania.

So nice to see the TR from someone else's perspective and I agree - extremely calms seas this cruise.

Did you guys decide on the Med? I remember you were playing around with that? I see your Spring Break cruise is near mine and by my estimation we are on the sailing right before you so we are close again!

Looking forward to hearing and seeing more!

Heather
Hi Heather! Thanks for the anniversary wishes and the compliment. How funny that we were at Palo at the same time! We were at the far end of the room closest to the buffet, near the windows. We LOVED brunch and will definitely make a reservation for while we're on our spring break cruise. I'm not sure about dinner since DD will be with us, but we have plenty of time to decide! At one point we had both a Med cruise and a spring break cruise booked for next year (never intending to take both), but we ultimately decided to stick with spring break for next year. We really, really want to go to the Med, but it's so crazy expensive when you factor in airfare and excursions! We're really hoping to go in 2015.

So are you doing a Western on the Fantasy in April? This will be our second Eastern, but this one will be going to St. Maarten instead of San Juan. We'll get around to a Western one of these days!
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014
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Old 09-16-2013, 05:03 PM   #27
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Thursday, 9/5: Day 5 (Disembarkation) + Misc. Information

Breakfast

We woke up early on Thursday morning, took our time getting showered and dressed, and then headed to the lounge for a light breakfast and some coffee. If we had not upgraded to concierge, our plan was to eat breakfast at Cabanas on disembarkation day. Many people believe that they have to eat breakfast in the MDR where they had dinner the previous night, but that's not actually the case. I wish we had known on our first cruise when we showed up for breakfast at Animator's Palate at 6:45 a.m.!

We were sad to leave our room for the last time, and after we'd closed the door DH asked me to take a photo of our doorbell. Apparently that was one of his favorite features of the room!



Onboard Airline Check-In

Starting at around 7:15 (if I remember correctly), there were announcements about every 15 minutes letting everyone know that the ship had cleared customs and that passengers were free to disembark. The announcements also stressed that anyone participating in the Onboard Airline Check-In (OAC) program had to be off the ship by 8:00. The letter we had received in our room the night before with our OAC packet indicated that we could disembark anytime before 9:00, so we took our time in the lounge. There was sort of a quiet spell after a handful of people left, so we took the opportunity to have a photo taken with Annie-Marie. All three concierge hosts were very helpful, but Annie-Marie really helped to make the cruise special for us.



This was our third time participating in the Onboard Airline Check-In program, and we love it. It's sometimes a bit of a pain having to be all packed by 10:30 on the last night, but it's so worth it the next morning. All we had to do was throw our PJs and a few toiletries into our carry-on bags and we were ready to go. For those interested, the airlines currently participating are AirTran, Alaska Airlines, American, Delta, JetBlue, United, and US Airways. The only restrictions are that your flight has to be after 11:30 a.m. on disembarkation day and that your final destination must be in the U.S. After leaving our bags outside our room the night before, we didn't see them again until we got to baggage claim in DC. Beautiful! Here is the Helpful Tips letter that was included in our OAC packet:



Disembarkation

After breakfast we walked down to deck 3 and there was a very short line to disembark. We didn't have to worry about locating our luggage since we had done onboard airline check-in, so we headed straight for the customs line. The lines were short and moving quickly, so that whole process took maybe 3 minutes. Outside of the terminal, we were pointed toward the next bus that would be departing for MCO. We were asked which airline we were booked on (US Airways) and were told to get off at the second stop. The bus pulled out after 5-10 minutes, and we were on our way back to MCO and real life.

MISCELLANEOUS INFO

The Infamous Gates

As has been reported here, the concierge gates on the Dream were taken down a week or so before our sailing. Having never sailed concierge on the Dream (or at all, for that matter), this was not a big deal to me. I liked being able to walk freely in and out of the hallway, especially since I often had my hands full. There is nothing in the forward part of deck 12 except staterooms and the concierge lounge, so there was very little foot traffic. I think I can count on one hand the number of times I saw someone other than a stateroom host in our hall!

Concierge Tipping

Tipping in concierge is a little different than the norm. Apparently the concierge hosts used to be non-tipped positions, but somewhere along the line that changed. The problem is that DCL does not give any guidance in this area. We talked to several people in the concierge lounge about tipping, and everyone seemed pretty clueless. We weren't even sure whether we had to tip in cash or could charge the tips to our onboard account until we got a letter in our room late in the cruise. We were so relieved that we could charge the tips since we didn't have a lot of cash. What we ended up doing was looking at what DCL recommends for the other tipped positions on the ship and then arriving at an amount based on how much we used each person's services. Tips for the concierge hosts are divided evenly among the three-person team. DH and I decided on $15/person/day, or $120 total. We were regulars at the early cocktail reception and typically had two drinks apiece. We tipped the bartender $40. We stopped in the lounge at least twice per day for snacks, coffee, and bottled water, so we tipped the woman who was in charge of food and beverages $20. We're not sure whether those amounts were high, low, or somewhere in the middle, but we felt good about them.



H2O+ Spa Products in Concierge

I had read both here and on DCL's site that H2O+ Sea Salt Hydrating Body Butter was still provided in concierge, so I was disappointed that there was none to be found. Instead, we had the Sea Salt Hydrating Body Lotion. In addition to the lotion, we had the same shampoo, conditioner, and soap that we've had in the past when we sailed in non-concierge rooms. There were two products unique to concierge: Sea Salt Body Wash and Solar Relief Gel. We really liked both and brought a couple of tubes of each home with us. I was able to get my body butter fix after we got home. H2O+ was having a "Buy 2 Get 1 Free" promotion, so I stopped by Ulta and bought some Sea Salt body wash and two tubes of body butter. The scent takes me back to the cruise every time I use it!



Next up: Closing Thoughts, including our take on whether concierge is worth the extra $$
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014

Last edited by Lisa Lisa; 02-07-2014 at 01:05 PM.
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Old 09-17-2013, 04:33 PM   #28
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Closing Thoughts

I thought I'd finish off my trip report by touching on two topics that come up a lot on the boards.

Is Concierge Worth the Extra Cost?

This is always a tricky one. Whether or not concierge is worth it depends on lots of factors, but the biggest two are probably your budget and your priorities. It was never an option for DH and me to pay over $5,000 to book a one-bedroom suite in advance. Getting a good deal initially and then upgrading at port brought the suite in line with our budget, though. Our priorities for this trip included treating ourselves to some extra luxuries and being pampered, and concierge definitely fit the bill in those regards.

A third important factor is the extent to which you will use the perks that are available. It's helpful to know going in what the perks are. The concierge staff will "advertise" some of them, but not all. For instance, we would not have known that we could order room service from the MDRs if I had not read about it here. We made a point to utilize as many of the services and take advantage of as many of the perks as possible. Doing so definitely made us feel as if we were getting the most possible bang for our buck.

We talked a lot about whether we would sail concierge again. We both agreed that our favorite part of sailing concierge on this trip was the room itself. As much as we loved the lounge and just being catered to in general, we agreed that we'll probably only sail concierge again if we can get a good deal on a one-bedroom suite at port. The exception would be if, for whatever reason, the difference in price between a category 4 room and a category V when we book is fairly small (which apparently sometimes happens).

I've compiled a list of concierge benefits below. If some or all of these perks are important to you and a concierge room is within your budget, I'd go for it!

Concierge Benefits on the Dream & Fantasy: Concierge Family Oceanview Staterooms with Verandah, One-Bedroom Suites, and Royal Suites

-Access to shoreside concierge services beginning 120 days prior to sail date. Apparently now it's possible to submit requests as far as 150 days out, and this has completely changed the game for those who want cabanas on Castaway Cay. (ETA: This policy has been changed again. Requests can now be submitted beginning at 125 days out.)
-The ability to reserve port adventures, adult dining, spa treatments, and nursery time, as well as make special MDR seating requests, 120 days out.
-Priority check-in and boarding (guaranteed assignment to boarding group 1)
-Separate concierge waiting area in terminal
-Welcome Aboard Reception during which concierge hosts take special requests (i.e., spa appointments, dining reservations, port excursions, special occasion planning, future cruise bookings, etc.); food & beverages are served
-Concierge hosts to fulfill requests during the cruise that would normally require a visit to Guest Services
-Fresh fruit basket in room upon arrival
-Rooms generally ready earlier than on the rest of the ship (12:30 on our cruise)
-Access to the concierge lounge on deck 12, which includes complimentary food and beverages from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. (alcoholic beverages are free only at designated times)
-Two pre-dinner cocktail receptions per day (complimentary beer, wine, and mixed drinks)
-Complimentary water and canned soda via refrigerators in the lounge
-Complimentary espresso drinks via an espresso machine in the lounge
-Concierge-only sundeck (with cooling misters, shower, complimentary sunscreen and Evian facial mist)
-100 minutes of free Wireless Internet access (ETA: DCL now bills for Internet usage by the MB vs. by the minute. This perk is now 100 MB.)
-Expanded selection of H2O+ Spa products
-Choice of pillows via the Pillow Talk program
-Plush robes and slippers
-Priority tendering
-Private character meet & greet
-Complimentary iPad rentals
-Media library (CDs and Blu-ray DVDs) in lounge
-Selection of magazines, books, and games in lounge
-Complimentary $10 arcade card for kids
-Complimentary limited edition Disney lithograph
-Separate area for luggage in terminal after disembarkation

Additional Benefits for Guests in One-Bedroom Suites (all of the above, plus the following)

-Larger size room (622 square feet, including verandah) with dining area, separate bedroom, and two full bathrooms
-Large attached master bath with jetted tub, separate shower, and dual vanities with TV in mirror
-Two 42" HD flat screen TVs, one in the living room and one in the bedroom
-Double-width verandah
-Extra closet space, including a walk-in closet
-Upgraded mattresses and bed linens
-In-suite dining from any of the MDRs (including hot breakfast items)
-Continental breakfast available via room service on disembarkation day

Additional Benefits for Guests in the Two Royal Suites (all of the above, plus the following)

-Even larger size (1,781 square feet, including verandah)
-Extra large verandah with hot tub
-Butler's pantry with refrigerator
-In-suite dining from Palo
-Free unlimited Internet access

Is DCL a Good Choice for an Adults-Only Vacation?

Both DH and I were a little hesitant, initially, to book a DCL cruise for our anniversary trip. It was the promotion DCL offered and the feedback I got here on the DISboards that ultimately convinced us to give it a try. We had been on two DCL cruises with our DD, so we had experienced the family aspects of a DCL cruise. On our second cruise, DD spent some time in the Oceaneer Lab, and that allowed us to get a taste of what DCL offers for adults. So we knew enough about the way DCL cruises work to map out a plan of attack for our adults-only trip. Here are the main things that we did differently for this cruise:

1. Upgraded to concierge. This was a biggie. I feel certain that we would have had a great time if we had stayed in our original room (a 5A on deck 9), but being in a concierge suite really made this trip feel extra special. Also, even though there were kids in concierge, we found that many of the concierge perks are geared toward adults. I don't think our DD would have wanted to spend a whole lot of time in the lounge, nor would she have been interested in hanging out on the concierge sundeck. She also would not have benefited directly from many of the services the concierge hosts provide. She would, however, have loved the room itself.

2. Stayed on decks 11-13 forward for most of the time we were on the ship. It's amazing how much QUIETER it is forward of the first funnel! It's literally like a different world. Kids did sometimes walk through the Quiet Cove area (unavoidable due to the ship's design), but very rarely did they linger. A couple of kids tried to get into the adult pool on embarkation day, but a CM came over right away and nicely explained to them that it was for adults only. The same thing happened with the hot tub later in the day with the same result.

3. Avoided the MDRs and shows. On our two cruises with DD we ate in the MDRs every night for dinner and saw most of the shows, so we didn't feel the need to do those things this time around. We really enjoyed the quiet and privacy of our dinners at Palo, Remy, and in our stateroom. I would imagine that some people might prefer the more festive, social aspects of the MDRs, but we were happy with our decision.

4. Spent time at Serenity Bay while on Castaway Cay. We had planned to spend half the day at SB, but we loved it so much that we stayed all day. The peacefulness at SB and the additional options for lunch at the Castaway Cay Air BBQ make Serenity Bay a "must do" for adults.

DH and I both had an amazing time and agreed that we would definitely like to take another adults-only DCL cruise in the future. We found plenty to do to keep us happy, and we didn't even take advantage of all the things DCL has to offer adults! For example, we spent a little bit of time in the Rainforest Room on our sea day, but other than that we didn't use the spa at all. We didn't use the Fitness Center either, even though both of us are very active in real life. Aside from our mixology class and a couple of brief stops in Meridian, we didn't spend any time in the bars or lounges on the ship. Part of that is because we enjoyed being in our room so much. I suspect that we would have been out later at night if we had not upgraded to a suite.

Wow... the more I think about it, the more I realize that we only scratched the surface with this cruise. Time to start planning another!
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014

Last edited by Lisa Lisa; 08-09-2014 at 09:43 AM.
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Old 09-19-2013, 07:36 AM   #29
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Wow, you gave me a lot to think about. Thanks for all the information, I appreciate it. We took our first cruise a year after it's first sailing, so much has changed. The line to get on the ship was awful, and with kids it was not fun. That's why we are considering concierge for this trip.
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:39 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goofy442 View Post
Wow, you gave me a lot to think about. Thanks for all the information, I appreciate it. We took our first cruise a year after it's first sailing, so much has changed. The line to get on the ship was awful, and with kids it was not fun. That's why we are considering concierge for this trip.
Glad you found it helpful! I think DCL generally does a good job of getting people on and off the ships (at least at Port Canaveral), but sailing in concierge definitely made a difference. If you don't go concierge, try to get to the terminal as soon as they open (i.e., first bus from MCO). If that's not possible and you want to avoid huge lines, you may want to wait until around 11:30 when the big initial rush has begun to die down. Since ours was only a 4-night cruise, we wanted to get onboard as early as possible to maximize our time that first day.
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Disney Dream ~ February 12-16, 2012
Disney Fantasy ~ March 23-30, 2013
Disney Dream ~ September 1-5, 2013 * Trip Report: Living the Suite Life on the Dream ~ Sept. 1-5, 2013
Disney Fantasy ~ April 19-26, 2014
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