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Old 09-30-2012, 01:49 AM   #1
Retro Magic
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Join Date: Sep 2012
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Just returned from the Dream 23-27th

After sailing multiple times on Royal Caribbean over the years and also sailing Princess, Celebrity and Norwegian, we though it was time to finally take the plunge. We did the 4-night Bahamas cruise 23rd-27th. Normally we save the Disney trips for WDW, but we cut the trip in half and split it half on the ship and half in WDW.

Firstly, the Dream is visually beautiful and detailed, arguably the most beautiful ship I have been on...and I have been on the "big" ones like Oasis. With that said, this is the last time I will ever do a 4-night cruise. On any line. Unless I lived locally, its just not worth it

Lets start with some of the positives...
-Yes, this ship is BEAUTIFUL and detailed. Loved it!!!
-The subtle soft plays of Disney movie music throughout was a wonderful touch.
-Cabins!!!!! The. Best. Cabins. EVER! So much room and rain shower!!!!
-The 3D movie theater was awesome, if not the BEST 3D I have ever seen. Loved watching Nemo.
-Walt Disney Theater
-Staff in Mickey's Mainsail
-Midship Detective Agency was a lot of fun
-Outdoor movies
-Aquaduck(leave it to Disney to have a 45min wait time at sea lol...no fastpass?)
-Nemo splash area was fun and cute...for adults too
-Cabanas has a great theme and probably served some of the best buffet food I have ever had at sea
-Adult pool
-Fireworks
-Mickey Ice Cream bars!!!

Now, compared to the other cruise lines I have sailed, most notably Norwegian and Royal Caribbean, these were some of my negatives....
-I found the guest services staff to have very limited knowledge and unprofessional. They never seemed to know the answer to anything, even in regards to offerings and areas on the ship. Also no follow ups to some issues we had. They acted like they didnt care at all and were very unaccommodating.
-Our server team for dinner acted like they wanted to just rush us out and were not interested at all to be there. No personality and no effort to get to know us or have "fun" and talk with us. It was sad to see other servers so immersed in their guests. It got so uncomfortable, we didnt go to the dining room the last night and went to Palo instead.
-Food in the dining room. And it was ALWAYS served cold.
-The entertainment. The effects and production value was fantastic, but the shows themselves I thought were very poor and a HUGE let-down. I expected so much more from Disney. The Golden Mickey's was good, but the Villains and Believe were a joke. These are supposed to be TOP of the line premium ships according to Disney. Where are the BROADWAY shows? Where is Mary Poppins? Lion King? Beauty & the Beast? If Royal can give us Hairspray, whats Disney's axcuse for not even having their OWN Broadway shows on-board? I am shocked they do not show these. I felt like I was watching spoofs making fun of Disney and its characters.
-Cabin hallways were very plain I thought compared to Royal caribbean which has artwork, cruios, etc throughout on many ships. Would have been nice to see some Disney artwork and peices over the years on display.
-Not enough eating options aside from room service if you wanted a snack throughout different times of the day
-Not enough activities during the day. Yes, we all love the characters, but a few more offerings would have been nice.
-The characters were a little overdone IMO, and I LOVE meet & greets too. You could rarely ever access the main staircase because the Princesses were always there. And if they were not there, Mickey or Minnie were there. And if they were not there, other characters were there. I felt like you could only access that grand staircase after midnight.
-Not enough seating areas in the atrium. A nice and small 24h lounge with some food options would have been perfect, like NCL offers.
-Gifts shops did not offer enough merchandise. Fragrances were dedicated to two small shelves. And never any specials or sales like on other cruises with they bring out the tables and offer inch of gold, etc.
-Not enough areas to easily access the outside decks from inside the ship or even throughout the ship when meet & greets were going on.
-Room attendant never even introduced himself and seemed like he couldn't care any less and was annoyed to be there.
-No library
-Rainforest Spa "themed" showers were mostly broken with only a couple of buttons working. They gave us a refund.

So, I have to say, bad first impression. I have summed it up to the main issue being the length of the cruise and the rest bad luck. Also, each cruise line offers something different, so you cannot get it all. BUT, in regards to the 4-day length of stay, in retrospect I believe thats why there was such poor service.....and I went into this expecting the best.

Being on such a short cruise, it allows no time to "bond" with the cruise staff. Knowing you will not be there long, whats the point in going above and beyond. Its just a quick turnover couple of days for them until the next guests arrive. Sadly, even though its a Disney ship, thats what I feel was the issue. Whereas the staff at the resorts I find always go above and beyond to do whatever they can for you, it was the complete opposite on the Dream.

For now, Royal Caribbean is still my #1 for cruising. I do plan to cruise on DCL again eventually, however. I feel like I never got the chance to truly experience a Disney cruise on this trip unfortunately. But am so happy I had the chance to at least get a little taste. We will wait a year or two and then want to at least try a week long stay on the Fantasy. Although a sister ship, they seem to offer much better entertainment and ship amenities. As well as adult areas. Plus Muppets!!! I believe after a week long sailing on the Fantasy, I will fall in-love with everything DCL has to offer and look forward to when that happens! šoš
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Last edited by Retro Magic; 10-09-2012 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 10-08-2012, 08:18 PM   #2
HillbillyMouse
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Underwhelmed!

We just returned from the four-night Sept. 30 cruise on the Dream. I agree 100 percent with your findings. Service not up the standards established by Disney. And the most frustrating thing was having Disney put the gratuities for server, asst. server, head server, and stateroom attendant on my account the first night, but telling me gratuities are at my discretion. Of course, they would gladly remove them after they informed me of it two days later. What a bunch of crap!
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Old 10-09-2012, 02:31 PM   #3
Retro Magic
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Was the fountain in Enchanted Garden working for your cruise? Is was broken during ours. They said it had been for a while. For such a new ship, there is no excuse to have main features like this broken. Lights were even burnt out in the restaurant too, not being replaced. Unfortunate.
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Coming Soon - 2015 Animal Kingdom Lodge & Beach Club šoš2014 Disneyland
2013 POP Centuryšoš2013 Port Orleans Riverside Royal Suitešoš2012 Port Orleans Riverside & MNSSHPšoš2012 DCL Dreamšoš2012 Buena Vista Palacešoš2011 Cruise Port
2008 Port Orleans FQ & MNSSHPšoš2008 Port Orleans FQšoš2007 Port Orleans FQ & MNSSHPšoš2004 Animal Kingdom Lodgešoš2000 Hyatt Grand Cypressšoš1999 Port Orleans FQ
1997 Grand Floridian & Boardwalkšoš1997 All Star Sports & WDW Dolphinšoš1995 Marriot Orlando World Centrešoš1991 Grand Floridianšoš1988 Buna Vista Palace


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