Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by Timon, Feb 4, 2011.
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Getting to the port and Embarkation Day Part 1
We boarded DCL buses from the All-Star Music Resort and we left at around 8:20. We had 4 buses for our whole group and we got the first one! It was my first time taking a DCL to the port and it was exciting! Loved the video they played as well as the trivia (and Disney shorts), even though they had a lot of spelling errors lol
I was looking forward to seeing if we would have to make a detour because of that big truck explosion that happened just before I left for home but it was painless. They just closed off the bridge and you could go around. When we passed by the bridge part of the overpass was completely gone and when we drove back to the airport on Thursday, they had already built a good portion of it. Here is a pic I took on the way back..
A few minutes later, I caught my first glimpse of the Dream
We got to the terminal at about 9:15am but the ship hadn't cleared so we drove over near the temporary parking lot and waited there for at least 30 mins. We all watched in awe from the bus...people were mostly commenting about the Aquaduck
I was able to chat on Skype to my friends Nancy, Mike & Robin (too early to call anyone back home!) and even did a webcam chat with Nanc!
Finally, our bus headed over to where the buses drop us off but we weren't allowed off Talk about a tease!!!!
We were told that customs still hadn't cleared everyone off and we saw passengers from the MV coming out after 10:15 am!!
More waiting and then we saw an ambulance and a woman being carried away in a stretcher. We were told that a DCL bus driver was injured and had to go to the hospital and that our driver was called over to take her place on the bus back to the airport. That was the only reason they let our bus over there. After some more waiting, finally we were let into the terminal!
One of the agents we had met (Baltimore!) had just spoken to his boss who was just getting off the MV and had told him that they had some major problems on the cruise in regards to people stealing things. We later found out that a good portion of those nice red pillows were taken as well as the hard cover folder-books, towels, butter knives from Animator's Palate and some glasses from a pub/bar/lounge.
After a quick zip through security, Baltimore and I went up the stairs into the terminal. Michelle had already made her way to the concierge desk to check-in as she is a platinum CC member. B and I were stopped and had to fill out a health questionnaire. The last time I was in the terminal, the store was still there so I had a hard time finding the Concierge desk but I finally made it to check-in. We got a #1 boarding card but because there are so many more concierge rooms on the Dream compared to the Magic, we weren't allowed into the little waiting area. No biggie for me, I would rather walk around the terminal anyway!
They had me listed as a first-time cruiser so I asked the lady if she could put my CC card # on my reservation but said she couldn't do anything about that. For a concierge CM, she wasn't very helpful at all. She told me that I had to go to Guest Services on the ship and get it done there. Well, I did that and the CM there told me that SHE couldn't do anything about it and it had to be done on land so I'm just hoping it will be all figured out.
They take your picture while you check-in now, which is a HUGE improvement from the last time I cruised when you had to go to a separate line and get it done. That was just chaos and a 30-minute wait, so it's good to see they no longer make you do that!
I walked around the terminal for a while getting some pics and video...
It wasn't long (about 11:45pm) that we began boarding. There were tons of people just crowding around the entrance which made it a little difficult to get to the front but we made it and we were so excited so finally get on the ship!!
They scan your card just after getting through the Mickey Ears...you can see my mug shot here
Just before the photo area...
We bypassed the photo and just walked on the ship. They announced "The Disney Dream would like to welcome Michelle and Cass!!!" or something similar to that and we were both in awe looking around!
The Atrium is even more beautiful in person but we didn't have time to linger, we needed to get to the kids clubs!
We were originally supposed to have a private tour before general boarding but because we had 170 agents, they cancelled it and gave us a brochure with a list of places we can tour on our own. What a joke!
So, before all the kiddos invaded, I wanted to get some photos/videos of the kids club so that is where we first went. It wasn't open just yet so we had to wait about 10 minutes.
WoW wOw WoW!!!!! The club/lab was awesome!! More on that later We also toured It's a Small Word Nursery which was also awesome! More later!
Then we ran to the Vibe...well we tried....but couldn't find it
A very nice CM pointed us in the right direction and after deciphering clues, discovering secret passwords and promising my second-born, I was let into the teen club Just kidding! But it sure was hidden well! I bet most adults would just give up after looking for it for 10 minutes LOL!
The Vibe was awesome!! It made me want to be a teenager again...but just for 4 days
After that, I think we went our separate ways because Michelle wanted to ride the Aquaduck while it wasn't too busy.
I went to our room as it was now about 1:45pm. We had a cat 5A Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom with Verandah on deck 9. It was cabin 9534 and it was awesome.
....I know...I used the word awesome yet again....I can't help it, it really was awesome....so get used to the word...I will be using it again....often.
More later on staterooms....it will be my next chapter actually!
After checking out the room, I took a tour of the Spa....a place I wish I could have spent more time in!! By then it was 2:30pm and I was starving so I headed to Cabanas to see what they had for the embarkation lunch. I took photos but I didn't really want that kind of food. I really just wanted a hot dog so I headed down to Flo's Cafe. I ran into Michelle on the way there and she joined me for some lunch.
The only table available was in the sun and it was too hot for me so I ate fast and then left! With my Lupus, I can't be in the sun for long
The hot dog was blah (yucky whole wheat bun) but the fries were....can you guess????
YUP!! They were awesome!!!!!!!!!! They were really good and I made sure to have them every day LOL!
OK, this is getting really long so I will have to continue this in the next post....
Always have loved your trip reports Cass. I even think we were actually on the same cruise in Oct. 2007 (Oct. 20-27--Magic Western).
Can't wait to read the rest of this trip report, as my daughter & I will be cruising on the Dream in June 2011. Gets me even more excited to read about the ship.
I have to say Cass...so far your report is....AWESOME!!
Hey tablemate!!! You could tryout the aqua duck with us in June!!!
One question: How come you look so happy in your mug shot?
Embarkation Day Part 2
After lunch, I did some more touring. I went to Palo and Meridian and just walked around to get a feel for her.
Back to the room where Michelle was there as were our bags! I started unpacking a little but it was time for the safety drill at 3:45 pm!
It was soooo nice not to have to throw on those bulky life vests. Instead we just walked down to Area J, on deck 4 starboard and got in a line. The lifeboats are hanging above the deck so a good portion of the deck was shaded (YAY!) so the lifeboat drill wasn't so bad. It took about 15 minutes, they scan your Room Key (KTTWC) and then they call out your stateroom number and you have to raise your hand.
It was pretty painless but very busy getting back to our room. We grabbed our cameras and headed to deck 12 to watch the Sailaway Party.
Not sure if this is going to change but I was less than thrilled with the party. It was short, not that fabulous and then they did a countdown from 5 (what happened to 10-9-8?) and sounded the ship's whistle. No streamers, nothing! Maybe I am being picky but I still remember my first cruise back in 2002 and the Sailaway party was soooo much fun, full of energy and excitement....this was not even close!
One cool thing is that they kept the Donald Pool open so you could swim and watch at the same time and have a front row view
Once the whistle sang "A Dream is a Wish your Heart makes" the party was over so we left. On our way back to the room, we stopped to peek at the Walt Disney Theatre. Your KKTWC is supposed to list the time of the show you are supposed to see (there are 3 shows on the Dream, not just 2 like the others) but it wasn't listed on ours so we had them scan the card (you now have to scan your cards before you enter the theatre for the nightly shows) and it came up as "no reservations" but we knew that we were supposed to attend the 7pm show.
Michelle stayed to tour the theatre and I went back to the room to unpack and watch us sail away from the verandah.
I got all unpacked and then watched us leave the port. I called Rob and Kira (my hubby and 4-year old girl) one last time since I wouldn't be able to hear their voices again until Thursday.
I really missed them. It was hard being on this cruise without them, really hard. I had never cruised without Rob before and the last 2 times, it was the three of us as a family. I felt guilty and sad and very lonely the whole 4 days. I am glad I went because I learned a lot but it didn't make it any easier.
I watched until we passed the beach (my favourite part!) and then waited for Michelle to return. She had ended up watching the 5pm show but wanted to see the 7pm show again.
The show was Golden Mickeys and although I had seen it several times before, I knew this one had some updates to it so I was looking forward to seeing it. Michelle likes sitting further back so we went our separate ways and I headed down to the third row where I ran into our tablemate from the Welcome session in Epcot. Her name was Kathleen and she was new to cruising (this was her very first cruise even though she works for a cruise agency LOL) so we had chatted quite a bit at our welcome dinner and it was nice to see her again, she was so very nice! I asked her how she was liking the whole cruise experience so far and she said she loved it!
The Golden Mickeys had some really great updates and I really loved it. The cast was AMAZING truly, the most talented cast I have seen yet. The lady who played the part of Cruella DeVil was simply GENIOUS!!!! She WAS Cruella, with every move, smirk, eyebrow lift....she was exceptional!
It was interesting to see Kathleen's reaction, as a first-time cruiser and non-Disney nut...she also loved it!!!
There was just enough time after the show to go back to the room and freshen up before dinner. We had rotation AERR so our first meal would be in Animator's Palate.
I am going to start a new chapter for AP so I will continue in the next post
I have to upload the AP photos, so it might take a bit
Well the long lines getting off the MV is maybe from them deciding if they should search everyone for stolen artifacts? lol
Seeing all of your pictures and going through mine makes me realize how many more pics I thought I had, but don't. I should have taken so much more!
So sorry you were feeling so lonely. I missed my family and wished they were there to see it all too!
If you have ever asked your self if it is worth writing all the TR details - i for one can say YES! THANK YOU!!! THANK YOU for the great pics and details!!
My extended family is going on the Dream Feb 17 - 20 we will travel as a group ages 1-65 - so when i do my "3 generations" report I will have a different perspective to add to these travel reports.
I know you are busy as you have a family/ work etc and a TR to write ....
but i have few questions:
Nemo's reef really for ages under 8?
donald pool fresh water or salt water?
how long do you want for elevator after safety drill? did you take your camera with you to the safety drill -- never mind looks like you did!
any tips for not getting lost on the ship? did you go the the 11-13 area "Edge"
our stateroom is mid ship near the elevators 8th floor -- any pics of the 8th floor? what side of the ship faces castaway cay when docked?
My Stateroom Part 1
Sorry for the fakeout...totally forgot I was going to do staterooms first I will have to break it up into several parts because I have a lot of photos and the DIS only allows 25 images per post.
I will start with OUR stateroom 9534 Cat 5A
It was a connecting room that was right at the forward elevators.
To be continued....
My Stateroom Part 2
Continue on with the photos....
Please forgive me if I repeat any photos...I have so many that it's hard to keep track sometimes lol
To be continued....
After I finish up with my room, I will pause to answer questions and post replies.
My Stateroom Part 3
Details, details, details!
Continued in the next post.
Once I get all the stateroom photos posted, I will write a quick room report.
Fabulous report so far! Love all the details you are sharing...like scanning your card when going into the Walt Disney Theater and sharing the french fries are just as good onboard the Dream!
My Stateroom Part 4
My fantastic stateroom gift from Nancy (cntkg1) and Chuck!
Fantastic FRIDGES that kept my water very cold!!!
These are the books that were stolen...
I have a large 29" suitcase under there!
The duvet cover
The inner and outer shower curtains
To be continued....
My Stateroom Part 5
Views looking around from our verandah...
Not 100% but I am pretty sure that all the verandah dividers open up so you can share your balcony if you have connecting rooms.
Here is a pic I took of a lower cabin sharing their verandah with the room next door...
Me on the verandah at Castaway Cay
The TV's are AMAZING!!! They are like PVR/DVR's in that you can pause, stop, rewind and bookmark the movies/shows. There are Disney animated movies, Disney live action movies, 2 Pixar movies, Hollywood Features and several TV shows.
Here's a few screenshots
sorry this one is really blurry!
You can see your stateroom charges too! But since we had two credit cards on file, only the lead guest (Michelle) was visible.
OK, I think that's it for stateroom photos
Next up is my review!
WOW!!! You took pictures of EVERYTHING!!!!!!
Thanks so much!!!
Awesome report Cass! I'm loving all the details!
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