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May 26 - June 2, 2012 From Reality to Fantasy

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by Dawncala, Jun 18, 2012.

  1. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Hi Tiara, Thank you for reading.

    If I had to compare the Alaska versus the Western Caribbean it would be hard because they were both amazing, but I'd say the main difference for me would be that the Alaska trip felt more relaxing than the Caribbean. It could have been that there was one more day at sea or it may have been because we had been on the Wonder before and already knew the ship. On the Fantasy everything was new, and the ship is bigger, so it felt like we were constantly on the go trying to see and do everything.

    You can't go wrong with Disney no matter where you decide to go. Have fun!
     
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  3. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Avenger Lovers Assemble-Disassemble-Assemble Again

    Tonight was one night we were REALLY looking forward to. I was pretty sure going into this cruise that since The Avengers had released into theaters only a couple of weeks ago that DCL would be showing it on our cruise. When we boarded, saw the theater schedule, and knew for sure we were over-the-moon excited. We had already seen the movie on opening weekend, because there was no way we could wait until the cruise, but we were super ready to see it again.

    The first showing was scheduled for 4:30 in the Walt Disney Theater. We arrived just before 4:00 and got great center section seats about 8 rows back. Suddenly, only a handful of minutes before the show was to begin, the ship’s power went out. Emergency lights came on almost immediately, and although they left the theater dimly lit, there was enough light to see what was going on. We stayed put and assumed they’d be back on shortly. I can’t remember if there was a ship wide broadcast made.

    4:30 came and went with no lights and no movie. Finally a crew member with a bull horn went up on stage and made an announcement. As it turns out, cruise ships hook up their electrical system to the dock so they can power down the engines during shore time. Well it seems that the Cozumel dock had lost power which meant The Fantasy did too. It was explained to us that it would take The Fantasy at least 30 minutes to power up the engines, run the start-up tests and then power up the movie equipment again. Unfortunately he also had to deliver the bad news that, because of the length of the movie, they wouldn’t be able to play the 4:30 show because by the time they got the movie started it would overlap the 7:45 showing. He assured us that they would reschedule the movie for another time or we could attend the 7:45 show instead.

    When the crew member finished his announcement many people began departing the theater, but our family and many others stayed put. Being an optimist (most of the time) I was still hoping for a Disney miracle. After another 10 minutes we finally gave in and left the theater. Sometime during all this the power came back on, but they assured us they would not be showing the 4:30 movie.

    We wandered in and out of the stores for the next 10 minutes or so wanting to stay close in case they announced that they got the movie going. Our wandering eventually found us near the atrium where DS declared that he was going to The Edge to look for friends. A few minutes after that an announcement came over the speakers that they succeeded in getting the movie projector running and WOULD be presenting the 4:30 showing in its entirety in 10 minutes. DH, DD and I raced back to the theater.

    We got there pretty quickly and scored sixth row center seats. We waited for DS to join us, but after many minutes he still hadn’t arrived. We tried to call The Edge on our Wave phone, but we couldn’t find a direct number. We ended up calling the main desk who gave us a number. By the time we reached a cast member in The Edge, who said she didn’t see DS in there, the movie was beginning. I raced out of the theater to find him. I ran up to The Edge, but he definitely wasn’t there. Then I went to the room, but he wasn’t there either. I figured he’d probably gone to the sports area, but it was such a big ship I knew I could look for a while and not bump into him. I decided to go back to the theater. I had missed the first 10 minutes of the movie, but since I’d seen it before so I knew what was going on. I was sad that DS was missing it though.

    The movie was just as great as the first time we saw it. We knew there were special scenes at the end so when the credits began, and people started to leave, we stayed put. Since the movie was ending mere minutes before the 7:45 showing was set to begin the next crowd was already filtering in to find seats. They ended up getting to watch the bonus scenes before they saw the movie.

    After we left we went to the cabin to get ready for dinner. This is where we found DS asleep. He hadn’t heard the movie announcement. He had gone to get ice cream and then to the sports deck. Then he got tired and went to lie down in the cabin where he fell asleep watching a movie. He was pretty disappointed about missing the movie. Luckily (I can’t remember at exactly what point) an announcement was made that they would show the movie again, in 3-D, at 11:00 PM and we promised to take him.
     
  4. bitlerzx4

    bitlerzx4 DIS Veteran

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    great trip report!

    we are going in Oct. & the only excursion we are booking is the fury!
     
  5. momtomattclare

    momtomattclare Mouseketeer

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    Love seeing the pics! Looks like a great trip!
     
  6. Brancaneve

    Brancaneve DIS Veteran

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    Thank you so much for this lovely trip report. Our Fantasy cruise is just 5 weeks away and you managed to get me very excited and informed at the same time.

    I do have a question.....Is the Costa Maya port in the city of Playa del Carmen?
     
  7. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    QUOTE=Brancaneve;47006902]Thank you so much for this lovely trip report. Our Fantasy cruise is just 5 weeks away and you managed to get me very excited and informed at the same time.

    I do have a question.....Is the Costa Maya port in the city of Playa del Carmen?[/QUOTE]

    Playa del Carmen is directly across from the island of Cozumel. I believe that there are many excursions that depart from there during the port day at Cozumel. Costa Maya is on the mainland about 175 miles south of Playa del Carmen.

    Thanks for reading and have a great trip! It's been harder to find time to write with all the family holiday activities, but I'll try to finish my report before you go.
     
  8. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Arrrrggg! We Be a Mite Famished

    It was pirate night tonight and we mostly dressed for the occasion. DH & DS went all out and wore their awesome pirate duds. I came up with a half-pirate/ half land-lubber look that allowed me to leave my more authentic pirate outfit at home. (I love it, but it takes up most of a suitcase on its own) DD phoned it in with a t-shirt with a skull on it. Perry really got into the spirit though.

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    Disney photographers came around to the tables tonight.

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    "Perry, what are you planning to do with that knife?"

    Tonight’s dinner was in Royal Court again. Our dynamic serving duo was adorable in their pirate attire.

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    Shipmates Precious & Siri

    After the excursion in Cozumel we were famished and looking forward to feasting tonight. Once again we weren’t disappointed and ate till we were nearly bursting.

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    Pirate menu: front & back

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    I love the burnt edge detail and subtle Disney references. How many hidden Mickeys can you find?

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    Pirates Golden Pot Stickers

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    Black Beard's Jumbo Crab Cake

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    Chilled-to-the-Bone Honeydew & Watermelon Soup

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    The Dutchman's Dijon Crusted Sirloin of Beef.
    My family likes their meat like they like their enemies...dead and bloody.


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    Jack Sparrow's BBQ Marinated Beef Short Ribs :thumbsup2 Falling off the bone tender.

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    Captain Hook's Macadamia Nut Dusted Mahi Mahi

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    Dessert Menu

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    Crunch Time Sundae

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    Banana-Chocolate Crepe :thumbsup2
     
  9. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Pirates Know How To Parrrghty

    Right after dinner it was time to go find spots to watch the Pirates in the Caribbean deck party. On the Fantasy they call it Buccaneer’s Blast. DH and I were planning to go for two reasons. One, I expected that the show would be different than the others we’d seen and I feel the need to see everything at least once. And two, it’s pretty cool to get to see fireworks at sea. We didn’t have any on our last cruise. The Wonder is not allowed to shoot fireworks on the Alaska voyages. It’s too close to shore and the boom can cause avalanches. Party poopers DS & DD opted to go do something else. I guess that’s one thing that I love about a Disney cruise though. Everyone has fun, just sometimes together and sometimes apart.

    The one bad point I’ve found about having late dining is having trouble finding a good seat at after dinner events. The main deck was already jam packed with families camped out for the show. DH and I wandered around for a bit hoping to find a decent viewing angle for taking photos, but no luck. We ended up watching from the deck above near the back.

    Buccaneer Blast stars Captain Jack Sparrow and Blackbeard. (The show on the Wonder stars Mickey Mouse and Captain Hook) It was not too scary for the younger kids, but it definitely had a different vibe because it was all people and no characters. I don’t remember the exact plot line, but it was basically bad guy (Blackbeard) taking over the ship, good guy (Jack Sparrow) swooping in to save the day, cue fireworks. Anyway, here are some photos. From our vantage point it was hard to get good shots at night with the actors bouncing and swinging and swash-buckling all over the place so I had to sometime take photos of the action on the big screen.


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    This skull came out and greeted the waiting crowd.

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    Captain Blackbeard makes his appearance.

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    Jack Sparrow prepares to zip-line in to save the day.

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    Jack makes it safely to the stage.

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    Seeing double...Screen action above, live action below.

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    Jack ascends the staircase to get the upper hand and be the center of attention.

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    Fireworks at sea

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    There was a slight mist throughout the show, but it began to rain just as the show ended. Much of the audience quickly left for warmer, drier places, but the pirates stayed on for the after-show dance party with the die-hard party people.
     
  10. Brancaneve

    Brancaneve DIS Veteran

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    Oh my! Did you say Jack Sparrow?? Let me get front row seats!
     
  11. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Avengers Reassemble

    Because of the power outage fiasco earlier they replayed The Avengers movie again, in 3-D, in the Walt Disney Theater at 11:30 PM. DD was too tired to go, but DH and I took DS as promised. I fell asleep about 30 minutes in and upon jarring awake, hoping I hadn’t drooled or snored or worst of all snorted, I decided it was time for me to go to bed. I excused myself and left. Luckily, since DS had napped earlier, he was able to watch the whole thing with DH.
     
  12. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Magic Found, Magic Lost

    Upon returning to our cabin I discovered a card on the bed informing us that we needed to set our clocks ahead one hour tonight. The magic hour we had been given on day 2 was being taken away. To me that meant one less hour of sleep, because I certainly wasn’t giving up any fun time.
     
  13. disneydiva16

    disneydiva16 DIS Veteran

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    What a great trip report!!!! Cant wait to go on the Fantasy in December!!!:goodvibes
     
  14. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    We just got back from 5 magical days at Disneyland and all I can say is Wow! :yay: It was crazy busy, but with some clever planning, and very little sleep, we were able to squeeze in quite a lot. Carsland is AMAZING and we got to ride Radiator Springs Racers twice. Disney totally pulled out all the punches for that ride. Soooo cool! :cool1: Now to sort through the nearly 1,500 photos. :scared1:

    Now back to our regularly scheduled trip report. Up next...Day 6.
     
  15. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Day 6: The Laziest Day of All

    Even after accounting for the lost magic hour when we changed time zones I woke later than usual today. After a lazy breakfast in Cabanas I went for my third and last Ionethermie spa treatment followed by a leisurely shower in the spacious Senses locker room. I believe the next hour was dedicated to finding out exactly how comfortable the lounge chairs by the adult pool were. DH and I had high tea reservations at Palo at 3:00 so we skipped lunch and just noshed at Cove Café instead.
     
  16. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Juggling Practice

    DH took DD to the D Lounge at 1:15 PM to learn to juggle. For the life of me I can’t remember what I was doing at that time. I’m sure wherever I was I was having fun, or relaxing, or both. Michael Holly, the juggling entertainer for the cruise, taught the workshop. DH and DD enjoyed it.

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    Practicing with one ball first.

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    Beginners often end up with no balls.
     
  17. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Tell the Queen Mum Ill Be Arriving at 3:00

    If youve ever taken a Disney cruise you probably already know that brunch reservations in Palo fill up faster than you can say Bippity boppity boo and it would take a fairy godmother to squeeze you in on a cruise that has only two days at sea. Brunch on both sea days were completely booked by the time our 90 day reservation window opened. Ive heard that you can sometimes make reservations as soon as you get on board, but I prefer to have reservations in advance.

    Since I really wanted to see the new Palo, and didn't want to give up another dinner in a main dining room, I scheduled a High Tea instead. We've never been to the high tea, but it sounded good so I made 3:00 reservations. Shortly after making these reservations I learned that the Disney Cruise Line was going to discontinue high tea in order to extend their popular brunch hours so I was glad we had reservations and would get to experience it once.


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    This hand blown glass chandelier gets lots of comments about looking like something that shouldn't really be in a restaurant.

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    Gorgeous booths, iron screens and tons of detail everywhere.

    We arrived promptly at 3:00 and practically had the room to ourselves as there was only one other table of guests in there. We had an excellent window table with gorgeous views of blue skies and a calm ocean. There is a set food menu for high tea, but the hostess gave us a menu anyway because we did have our choice of tea. It was nice that the menu had descriptions of the food too.

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    I ordered the Cassis tea and I believe DH ordered one of the green teas. Moments after ordering our drinks a gorgeous tower of pastries and sandwiches arrived. Shortly after that a server came around with fresh (and I mean really, really fresh) piping hot scones served with Devonshire cream and strawberry preserves. Our teas arrived as well.

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    A tower of yum and beautiful blue seas.

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    Fresh warm scones with cream and jam.

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    The personal pots of tea come with leaf tea (not bags) and a strainer to use when pouring.

    Everything was tasty. We ate until we just couldnt eat another bite and there was still some food left over. During the meal we were asked if we wanted another of any of the items. Even though a set quantity of food arrived initially we were welcome to ask for more of anything at any time. We politely declined the offer, finished our teas and asked for the check.

    Before we left we asked where they usually set up the buffet in here. Palo on the Fantasy was very different from the Palo on the Wonder. Our waiter asked if we'd like a tour of the restaurant. Of course we did so he escorted us all around and I took some more photos.


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    Beautiful carved wood detail.

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    This is the area where they set up the food for the brunch buffet.

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    This beautiful mural, set in a private dining alcove, was covered with transparent shimmery glass beads giving it a textured, shiny effect.

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    On the way out I noticed the wine storage. Each bottle was cradled in its own personal leather hammock.

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    This was the only decor choice in Palo that I didn't understand. This is a server work station area. The wall colors don't match anything else in the restaurant and it looks like someone scribbled on it with a can of spray paint.
     
  18. Maple17

    Maple17 Mouseketeer

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    Love this report and your tip about using the showers at Senses. Can kids use them too? I am thinking for our upcoming cruise in Feb DH and I will take turns taking DS 8 and DD 10. Will free up the bathroom in our room!
     
  19. Dawncala

    Dawncala Collector of magical memories and pixie dust

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    Thank you!

    I'm not sure what the official rule is about children in the locker/shower area in Senses. I know you need to be 18 to go in the fitness center or get treatments in the main spa. There is a special teen spa area on the Fantasy, and my daughter was 13 at the time, so we just walked in and no one ever said a word.

    You can always try it. Worst thing that could happen is that they let you know your children are too young for the area. You and your DH could still take turns going there.
     
  20. bitlerzx4

    bitlerzx4 DIS Veteran

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    I love your report. I can not wait for it to be my turn :)
     
  21. Maple17

    Maple17 Mouseketeer

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    Yes, we will try it for sure, such a good idea! Thanks!
     

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