3 generations on the Fantasy & cruising concierge: CABANA #10! [updated 10/12/14]

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by emmebear, Feb 2, 2013.

  1. emmebear

    emmebear nurse & mommy.

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    hello everyone!

    i just returned from our cruise on board the disney fantasy. we were on the 7 night eastern caribbean itinerary (which includes san juan) & cruised concierge in a one bedroom suite, stateroom 12020.

    the dates of the cruise was 1/26/13 - 2/2/13.

    on this special trip, it was 3 generations of hyun ladies (my mom, me & my daughter) & we set sail to celebrate my daughter's 3rd birthday. also, this trip was a "thank you" trip for my mother who has been my #1 cheerleader & support as i am raising my daughter as a single mother. so indeed, we had much to celebrate during this FANTASTIC vacation.

    i took so many pictures and will end this post with a few pictures from my iphone. please check back soon for more updates!

    ask away if you have any questions about the cruise & i will try to answer as soon as i can. thanks for reading.


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    picture taken during the captain's gala. this is me, my wonderful mom & awesome daughter.


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    the fantasy docked in san juan.


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    a view of deck 11 from the aqua duck on an early morning at sea.


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    view of st. thomas from our balcony.


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    this is beautiful st. john.


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    the fort in san juan. i did my own tour of the fort for free!


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    our cabana in castway cay!


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    our cabana #10 on castaway cay.


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    panoramic shot of castaway cay.


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    my daughter in the gorgeous water.
     
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  3. iloverags2

    iloverags2 DIS Veteran

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    Looking forward to reading all about your cruise!
     
  4. Fruto76

    Fruto76 DIS Veteran

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    Subbing o read along! Can't wait to see all your beautiful pictures and hear about your experience. :)
     
  5. Thumpersmom

    Thumpersmom DIS Veteran

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    Sounds like a wonderful trip! Can't wait to see more of the fun the three of you had!
     
  6. rachel09985

    rachel09985 DIS Veteran

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    of course I am in! So excited to read more!
     
  7. KarenMP59

    KarenMP59 DVC Member

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    subbing:)
     
  8. PaDisneyCouple

    PaDisneyCouple DIS Veteran

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    We're in. Can't wait to read all about it.
     
  9. lizzyb

    lizzyb DIS Veteran

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    Onboard!
     
  10. Nicki828

    Nicki828 Mouseketeer

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    Welcome back - we were on the same cruise as you :)
     
  11. emmebear

    emmebear nurse & mommy.

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    thanks for reading everyone & sharing my experience!



    BEGINNINGS [the boring stuff]

    i booked this cruise through costco last may. i am a disney passholder so we visit the parks quite frequently but i wanted a different experience. i've never been on a cruise before and when i saw the short video about the fantasy (they were using footage from the dream), i knew i wanted to book a cruise for the sheer convenience of everything being on the ship...i don't have to plan adr's, i don't have to book hotels, & i don't have to obsess about character meet & greets for my daughter. everything would be on the ship! it would be the perfect way for my mom to experience disney & i knew my daughter would have an absolute blast. i wanted the three of us to have a great vacation...together (cheesy, i know).

    i knew nothing about cruising prior to booking. i gathered my information from the internet & began to price compare online. i had no idea costco did disney cruise bookings. i chose costco because i will be getting a $710.00 costco cash card by booking with them. in my opinion, this was a better deal than a $25 OBC by booking through disney directly or the $200-$300 OBC offered by other travel companies.

    to me, costco was the way to go. i had no issues with them & when i did call about a question, they were very helpful & prompt.



    TO CONCIERGE OR NOT?

    my daughter turned 3 on january 27th and i saw that there was the eastern caribbean itinerary from january 26 - february 2nd. this would be perfect! after deciding that this was the cruise i wanted to be on, i struggled with cruising concierge vs. cruising non-concierge. i read so may discussions on the internet of cruisers who have done both. would the experience be worth the extra cost? there was a significant price difference between concierge & non-concierge.

    the key points for me deciding on concierge was the one bedroom suite as well as my desire for my mom to feel pampered. i'm a pretty flexible & frugal traveler (i stay only in value resorts at the park to save on $$) & i would be pretty happy staying anywhere on the ship but i really wanted my mom to have the ultimate experience as she has been such a huge support for me & she never does nice things for herself.

    plus, i knew we would spend lots of time in our room (my daughter still naps) & the jacuzzi tub would be awesome for my mom to soak in daily as she suffers from chronic pain. i loved the idea of our private sun deck so that we could get away from the crowds of people when we needed a break.

    also, the access to the onshore concierge team would be beneficial to me as i would need tons of help with this cruise. everything was so overwhelming in terms of port excursions, dining rotations, etc & i was glad for the extra help. so i took the plunge and decided to go concierge & prayed that the experience (and price) would be worth it.

    the shoreside concierge team was extremely helpful! i had so many questions and they answered every question quickly & pleasantly. they helped me secure everything i wanted (which included a cabana that was sold out online as i missed my chance to book at my 120 day mark), my palo brunch reservation (which i had changed three times), a BBB appointment for my daughter as well as changing my remy dinner time (which i later cancelled).

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    you also get this nice book which included luggage tags, cruise contract & other important information.


    when it was time to book, i had no idea what star side, port side, aft meant and there were only a handful of rooms to book on the 12th floor. at the time, there also wasn't very many room reviews on board the fantasy so i sat and stared at my screen for an hour as i was trying to pick a room. i really have no idea why i chose room 12020 (i think i got sick of staring at the screen & just picked) but it was done & there was no turning back now. we were booked!

    also, here's a tip: concierge deposits are non-refundable. however, a few months after i booked, i called to see if i could downgrade my room (i was still in sticker shock mode) to a non-concierge room. costco had to call disney but disney did offer to apply my deposit to a new room as a "one time only" courtesy. but i'm so glad i kept our concierge level room!


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    now, onto the fun stuff.

    ARRIVAL

    it was a short 2 hour drive to port canaveral. we were going to park the car in the garage. it was $120 to park in the garage for the 7 nights. while pulling in, i was totally overwhelmed at the sheer size of the fantasy. it towered over the other cruise ships docked in the port. the ship was breathtakingly beautiful. the three of us said, "WOW" in unison as we were pulling in. i felt like a total kid while parking. i got the goosebumps & was so super excited to get on board.


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    the view of the ship as i was pulling in the parking lot. the ship is MASSIVE.


    we arrived at port canaveral at 11:30am and the place was swarmed with people. it was insanity! we parked on level 2 and walked into the cruise terminal. we were told that concierge check in was in the back corner to the right. we were greeted by the staff & the check in process was quick & painless.

    as we were being checked in, we received our KTTW cards, navigators, & my daughter's mickey band (more on that later). here's a first look at the saturday navigator. i took the pics with my iphone while the gentleman was finishing checking me in at the podium.


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    after check in was completed, we were escorted in a separate line to the right (everyone else was waiting in line to the left) to get our picture taken. i really wanted to buy this picture that the staff took but unfortunately my daughter had her eyes closed in both.

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    pretty crappy iphone picture but i loved the background.


    after our picture was taken, we were introduced by a cm with a microphone as we entered the lobby atrium. it was a really nice touch. then, we were escorted to the concierge lounge on the 12th floor.


    but right after a picture with the fabulous minnie mouse in the lobby atrium.

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    the lobby atrium was beautiful! i could not wait to start exploring the ship. but first, we were being escorted to the concierge lounge for our meet & greet. up to the 12th floor we go. while on the elevator to the 12th floor, i knew i had made the right decision to go concierge. we were already having such a great experience and it was only the first 45 minutes.


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    hello concierge lounge...we have arrived!!
     
  12. wiigirl

    wiigirl DIS Veteran

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    Great TR....love the pics! :)
     
  13. Linda67

    Linda67 Has a Masters in Margaritas

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    Count me in for this one!
    I've already seen some of your yummy food pics on Barb's dining board thread
    Can't wait to hear all about your trip - what a lovely thing to do for your Mum :goodvibes
     
  14. iloverags2

    iloverags2 DIS Veteran

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    I can already tell by the sheer excitement in your "voice" that you had a fabulous cruise!
     
  15. CarolyninCO

    CarolyninCO Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for sharing your trip! Looking forward to more as I just booked our first concierge Fantasy cruise.
     
  16. Meganyvemarie

    Meganyvemarie Mouseketeer

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    Cant wait to hear more about your trip! popcorn::

    We just booked the Fantasy for Jan 2014 and this will definitely get me excited and prepared for our trip! :cool1:
     
  17. emmebear

    emmebear nurse & mommy.

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    thanks for reading along everyone! :thumbsup2

    transitioning to the "real world" & working has been pretty rough after an absolutely amazing trip. plus, i've come down with a cold which makes it even more tough.

    i'll start posting pictures tomorrow of the awesome concierge lounge & the room.

    my daughter emme keeps saying that she wants to "go back on the boat". :sad:
     
  18. emmebear

    emmebear nurse & mommy.

    Joined:
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    updated 2/6/13



    HELLO CONCIERGE!

    we finally arrive to the concierge lounge. it was a bit crowded during this meet & greet. we were escorted to a table & i grabbed a snack for my daughter from the small buffet. there was also a bar set up & the very awesome NAMCHAN was bartending & he made me a very refreshing mimosa.


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    a perfect mimosa to start a perfect vacation.


    ...so the mimosa went down very quickly and i ordered my second drink.

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    grey goose voda + soda water + lime = awesome.


    kemisha introduces herself to my family & she begins to explain all the offerings of concierge. she also shows us how to use the wave phone & gives us great tips for the cruise. she asked if emme needed any milk stocked in the fridge & she immediately stocked our fridge with milk. in one word, kemisha was FANTASTIC! we felt really comfortable with her & she was so warm, sincere & helpful.

    we also met amazing julia as well! alice was also part of the team but we did not get to meet her during the meet & greet but met alice a few hours later. all three ladies go above & beyond to help make your trip as relaxing as possible. i cannot thank these ladies enough for all that they did for us during the trip. the were the terrific trip....absolutely wonderful!

    we were given a concierge packet which was our guide to everything that concierge offers.

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    soon after, we were told our room was ready @ 1:30. i was so excited to see our room & even happier that we wouldn't be carrying around our travel bag when we went to explore the ship. i will post more images of the lounge & offerings in a later post.

    off to the room we go!



    FIRST IMPRESSIONS.


    room 12020 is very close to the concierge lounge. when i say very close, we were about 3 rooms down from concierge so we visited the lounge quite frequently.


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    emme's bibbidi bobbidi boutique appointment card


    we saw emme's bbb appointment card awaiting us. then we opened the door & the one bedroom suite is GINORMOUS. it was larger than my first college apartment.


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    the hallway.


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    another view of the hallway


    there are three closets in the hallway, one of which is a walk in. also, there is a bathroom which has a shower as well. all the closet space was really great. we used all three closets. there were also many drawers to place items in. it really did feel like home.

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    a well lived in walk in closet.



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    hallway bathroom

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    hallway shower.

    the shower head was really really nice. it was a very steady stream. there's also a removable shower head as well. the plus is that the water gets super hot, quickly. i loved that shower.



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    living area with flat screen tv.


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    living area: there is two entry way to get onto the balcony and one is located in the living area.


    concierge level rooms have access to on demand movies & shows. the selection included tons of disney movies, pixar films, hollywood features, disney jr shows, disney shows, documentaries etc. there were tons to choose from. another tip is that you can ask the concierge staff for popcorn as well & have some quiet time with a movie. it was really great!

    the couch turned into a really large bed & it was quite comfortable. i was surprised how comfortable the couch actually was. concierge level has something called "pillow talk" where you can ask for different types of pillows. i asked for a "memory foam" & my mom got the "elliptical" for neck support. the special pillows were wonderful.


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    my daughter emme wearing a shirt by disboard member FRUTO76. please check out her shop...her work is incredible!


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    sitting area + additional bed. the desk became my place for charging my gadgets.


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    the fridge (located underneath the tv in living room) which was stocked with drinks & milk. we loaded up on evian water from the lounge. they would give us 6 packs whenever we requested. in total, we drank 24 bottles of water in our room. not really great for the environment but it was so nice to have in our room.



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    our dining area: there is a second entry to the balcony from this area.

    another great tip is that if you do not want to go to your dining rotation, in concierge you are able to order off the menu & have the food delivered to your room so that you can enjoy it there. it was so nice to have a table. my mom loved opening the balcony and getting some fresh air as we ate breakfast & drank our coffee. it was a great luxury to have.



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    the very comfortable bed.


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    master bathroom.


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    2 sinks!

    there was so much space to put our things into. there was storage space underneath each sink as well as the drawers in the middle.



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    jacuzzi tube that also had lights that change color. this tub was used every night. it was AH-MA-ZING!


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    the mirror in the master bathroom has a tv inside of it!


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    bath products which worked really well. i was impressed with the shampoo and conditioner as the products at the resorts are TERRIBLE. i regret bringing my own toiletries as the ones on board were great.


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    so cute!


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    even the towels were awesome!


    up next, surprises from our concierge team!
     
  19. KarenMP59

    KarenMP59 DVC Member

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    Awesome pics!! We are staying in room 12024 in April and we can't wait!! Any idea who the concierge hosts will be then? We had Julia and Kemisha last year, plus PJ. Loved them all. So attentive. We were in 12004 last May and we are excited to move up to a one bedroom pixiedust: Excited to see more of your report :)
     
  20. BuzzLightyearInTampa

    BuzzLightyearInTampa DIS Veteran

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    About the toiletries, you'll find they are the same (H20 Spa Line) as they provide at the Grand Floridian.
     
  21. emmebear

    emmebear nurse & mommy.

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    i've never stayed at the grand floridian & the resorts i've stayed in had awful toiletries that included shampoo + conditioner in one. :duck:

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    toiletries from my stay at all star movies, aoa little mermaid & pop century.
     

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