Sunday, June 24, 2012

Disney Dream, Day One

It's taken us way too long to sort out our thoughts and finally decide just how we want to go about recording our Disney Dream memories. We've finally decided to take it day by day.  Sounds good?  Here we go!

We left for Port Canaveral at 5:00 in the afternoon.  Remember in November of 2011 when all of those tornadoes went through South Georgia?  Yeah...we drove through that.  At one point, we were literally crawling at 40 miles per hour on the interstate.  By the time we pulled into our hotel in Cape Canaveral, it was 2:00 a.m.  Thankfully, the concierge upgraded us to a king-sized suite.

We stayed at the Radisson Resort At the Port.  This hotel is old, but they let you park for free and shuttle you to the port.  I made our Radisson reservations approximately a month before the cruise and called ahead a week before the cruise to reserve our space on the 10:30 shuttle.

Check out that Florida decor!  Pink and Hawaiian print FTW! 
While it was nice that the Radisson upgraded us, we really didn't need all of this space.
Sleep Number beds...not all they are cracked up to be!
Check out that sketchy "in-the-room" tub!  Mirrored walls and ceiling, y'all!
Our time at the Radisson was short.  When we completed the online check-in for our cruise {make sure you do simplifies everything!}, we reserved the 11:00 check-in time.  We boarded our shuttle {call ahead to make your reservations} at 10:30 and we made it to the port in no time!

Since we'd already checked-in online, we simply hopped in the Castaway Club line {Castaway Club is for people who've sailed with Disney before} and received a boarding pass...we were the third group to board!  Woo-hoo!  That meant we only had a twenty minute wait in the terminal.

Of course, Minnie Mouse showed up!
And we just had to get a picture.
The Christmas decor was fabulous.
As was this giant Christmas tree.
And of course,  you enter the ship through a Mickey-shaped portal.  
After our very short wait, our boarding group was announced.  We boarded the ship {and on DCL ships, they announce you...squeal!} and it took us ten minutes to stop gaping.  People, it was gorgeous.

The very hospitable cast members directed us to Cabanas, the breakfast/lunch buffet on board the ship.  Cabanas has a very distinct Finding Nemo theme and the food was pretty delicious!

Bacon wrapped salmon, grilled asparagus, shrimp cocktail, mac-n-cheese, mushroom pasta...yum! 
Josh is allergic to shellfish and bivalves.  Let's all feel sorry for him.
After eating like we'd been on a hunger strike, we ate a little more and then began exploring the ship.  Since we were the third group to board and there were literally tons of people still waiting in the port terminal, it was mostly empty.

We explored the sport's deck.  I'm not a very sporty person, but it was nice.  There were several basketball goals and a mini-golf course.  There's also a virtual golf clinic, ping pong tables, and a few other little things that I'm sure athletic people love.
Then we stopped by the children's area.  The cast member at the entrance was nice enough to let us get some pictures even though we aren't parents. 
Before entering, every child has their hands washed by this cool contraption.  How awesome is that?
Tinkerbell themed computer area.
Nemo themed computer area.
There were several lounging areas...because I'm sure that's what children do.
And then he just couldn't stand it anymore.  He said his hands had never felt cleaner.
We got a quick look at the AquaDuck.  More on this later.

And the adult pool.

Then we found the Walt Disney Theater, where we had the pleasure of seeing some AMAZING shows.  

We also passed by some Living Artwork.  The concept for this is too cool--"paintings" that seem like still life will magically come to life when people pass by them.  It's honestly hard to tell what's "real" and what isn't, so these pieces of art will take you by surprise!
As we continued our ship tour, we found the lifeboats on the "running" deck.  For anyone nervous about boarding a ship:  please note that the lifeboats are larger than most pontoons and definitely larger than most speed boats.
We happened upon the 3D movie theater.  During our cruise, Real Steel and The Winnie the Pooh movie were playing.

We finally made our way to our stateroom.  We were lucky enough to book a verandah suite and we loved it.
The queen-sized bed was incredibly comfortable.  The linens were really great too.  I was a bit worried about the linens as we sleep on 1200 thread count sheets at home, but these were certainly comparable.
Our Castaway Club gift included:  a beach bag, a key chain, two aluminum water bottles, and two Rice Krispy treats.
The sitting area.  The couch converts to a full-sized bed and a bunk bed magically pops out of the ceiling.
The bathroom is split into two separate areas:  one for pottying and one for bathing.  Each area has a sink and mirror.

The doors on Disney Cruise Line ships are magnetic.  Our paltry little sign was sad in comparison to some doors!

After inspecting our room, we headed off to the Castaway party.  For two Disney freaks like us, it was fabulous.  They hand out loads of streamers and everybody dances and sings...regardless of your age or gender, it's really great.

The AquaDuck went right over our heads!
After the Castaway bash, we went back to our room for a bit because Josh wanted to watch the sunset from our verandah.  It.  Was.  Beautiful.
Then, we headed off to the Walt Disney Theater for our first show.  Because we don't have any children and we're a younger couple, we were assigned the earlier showtime and the later dinner seating.  Some cruisers skip the shows altogether, but I promise, they are NOT to be missed.  The first night, the captain and his staff introduced themselves before the show began.
Captain Gus.  He assured us that if he fell ill, we still had Captain Jack Sparrow, Captain Micky, and Captain Hook to steer the ship.
Though you are allowed to take photographs during the show, we chose to simply enjoy the show instead.  The first show was called The Golden Mickeys.  Though I'd seen it on a previous Disney Cruise, they'd added in new elements.  It's a really fun show!  If memory serves me correctly, it lasted approximately 45 minutes.  After the show, we headed back to our cabin and got ready for dinner!

According to our dining tickets, our restaurant rotation was:  Royal Palace, Animator's Palate, and Enchanted Garden.  Our rotation was also on our Key To the World cards.

Sadly, we did not take any pictures during our meal at Royal Palace.  I promise that we took pictures of all of our other meals!  This restaurant features French cuisine and {obviously} princess decor.  Let me take a moment to explain rotational dining...apparently it differs from dining aboard other cruise lines.

Rotational dining means that each night your party will rotate to a different restaurant featuring a different style of cuisine.  Your rotation is pre-assigned, however, it can be changed upon request.  Your head waiter, assistant waiter, and the dining room manager will follow you to each restaurant.  

Click here for a Royal Palace menu.  

Though French food is one of my favorites, it was a new adventure for Josh.  For appetizers, I chose Escargots Gratines and he had the Double Baked Spinach Souffle.  Both were pronounced yummy, though Josh was a bit wary of my escargot.  For the soup course, I had Belle's French Onion Soup {one of my and delish!} while Josh chose the Avocado Citrus Salad.  As our main course, I chose the beef tenderloin with lobster while Josh sampled the wild boar.  Both were very tender and my steak was cooked to medium rare.  The lobster was a bit overdone, but I can live with that :)

For dessert, our waiter, Branko, brought out all of the desserts on the menu for us to sample.  Our favorite?  The Grand Marnier Souffle with cream Anglaise.  It.  Was.  Delicious.

Once we were thoroughly stuffed, we headed back to our cabin to find a towel lobster and two Sleepy chocolates {featuring Sleepy from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs}. 
Our room hostess, Maria, had also turned down our bed, stowed our suitcases under the bed, and made everything especially cozy {closing the curtains, stocking extra towels, etc}.  Maria was excellent and took really great care of us.  We were so tuckered out, that we climbed into bed, selected a movie from the on-demand menu, and fell out.
Next up...our scary adventure in Nassau, the AquaDuck experience, and Pirate Night!

1 comment:

  1. Its very interesting Blog.I really great info.Thanks for sharing this blog.


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