After a long period of anticipation, Disney Cruise Line (DCL) has unveiled the first major details of its upcoming new Disney Wish ship, launching in summer 2022. The ship will depart from Port Canaveral, Florida, and although exact itineraries have yet to be announced, sailings will first go on sale on 27 May 2021.
In classic narrative fashion — “storytelling is in our Disney DNA”, according to Carlos Jimenez, managing producer at DCL — the theme of the ship will be “enchantment”. The vessel’s central “castle at sea” will be the Grand Hall atrium, appropriately complete with a “wishing star” chandelier, and a bronze statue of Cinderella, along with a theatrical stage below.
In the Disney Wish's Marvel Super Hero Academy, seen here in a rendering, kids train to be the next generation of superheroes with the help of Spider-Man, Black Panther, Ant-Man and the Wasp. Photo Credit: Disney Cruise Line
Onboard entertainment, rides and attractions
The ship will feature an evolution of the AquaDuck water coaster from the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy ships. Onboard Disney Wish, the AquaMouse, inspired by The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse animated shorts, will be Disney’s first full-fledged attraction at sea.
The overall ride length will be 18m and stretch to the top of the smokestacks with an aquatic lift hill (read: no climbing flights of stairs to launch) encapsulated by audio and video, as well as more than 60 water effects that tell the story of Scuba Scramble. Riders on two-person vehicles will experience Port Misadventures to Mermaid Lagoon, and speed blasters and a loop over the side of the ship will provide further thrills.
Beneath the AquaMouse will be a Mickey and friends district, featuring a total of six swimming pools across two tiered decks for all guests, while families will enjoy the Toy Story Splash Zone and Slide-a-saurus Rex. There will even be an adults-only infinity pool overlooking the ship’s stern at Quiet Cove, joining the exclusive Cove Cafe and Cove Bar for guests 18 years or older.
The upper decks will include Hero Zone, the ship’s fully enclosed and air-conditioned sports arena for participant competitions and spectator balcony viewing, according to Jimmy Lynett, cruise director for DCL.
The new AquaMouse feature will be inspired by "The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse" animated shorts. Photo Credit: Disney Cruise Line
Offerings just for kids
Meanwhile, kids will love the return of Disney’s Oceaneer Club, which features a child-exclusive slide entrance (parents get a traditional door), as well as the new Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI) Lab.
The Oceaneer Club will also have Fairytale Hall with Rapunzel’s Art Studio; Belle’s Library; and Anna and Elsa with Frozen Fun; as well as a DCL favourite: Marvel Super Hero Academy.
At the lab, Disney will be “really taking our young cruisers behind the scenes” to see the creative team responsible for developing every worldwide attraction, according to Claire Weiss, principle designer and creative director at WDI. Here, children will be able to design and virtually ride their very own roller coaster.
Still available will be It’s a Small World Nursery for the youngest onboard, as well as Edge (themed to a New York City loft) for tweens and Vibe (inspired by a Parisian artist’s loft) for teens.
In addition to the Grand Hall “castle” will be Luna (inspired by the Disney and Pixar short “La Luna”) — Wish’s “town square” — a gathering space and new entertainment hub during the day, as well as an adults-only lounge at night.
Another returning DCL staple will be the 1,274-seat Walt Disney Theatre, evoking the look of a “magical forest”, where Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular will be restaged, in addition to new shows that will be revealed at a later date. Plus, Wish will feature two first-run movie theatres: Wonderland Cinema (inspired by the film Alice in Wonderland) and Never Land Cinema (inspired by Peter Pan), complete with Dolby Atmos 3D audio technology.
Onboard restaurants and lounges
Foodies can head to a trio of rotational restaurants: Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure will showcase Frozen characters Elsa, Anna, Kristoff and Olaf, as well as Nordic cuisine; and the elegant 1923 will be reminiscent of Hollywood during 1923 (the year The Walt Disney Company was founded) while spotlighting the “magic of filmmaking,” according to Weiss. And Worlds of Marvel will bring alive the Marvel Cinematic Universe with interactive “dinner and a show” elements throughout the evening. Food will be inspired by the fictional countries of Wakanda (a country in Africa that’s home to Black Panther) and Sokovia (in Eastern Europe), along with the Avengers' home in New York City.
While Worlds of Marvel will bring elements of the themed cruise experience Marvel Day at Sea to the ship permanently, Star Wars: Hyperspace Lounge will do the same for Star Wars Day at Sea — but just for adults. Similar to Skyline (onboard Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy), which immerses patrons in the cityscapes of Europe, Hyperspace Lounge will transport clients to Tatooine, Mustafar, Coruscant and even Batuu, the planet featured at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at both Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif. and Disney's Hollywood Studios in Orlando.
Palo is also coming back as Palo Steakhouse (for adult specialty dining), serving Italian cuisine in addition to American prime cuts, Australian wagyu and Japanese Kobe and Miyazaki beefs. Taking the place of Remy on Dream and Fantasy will be Enchante by Chef Arnaud Lallement. The restaurant will be themed to Lumiere and plate international dishes from the three-starred Michelin chef. Meanwhile, The Rose will continue the Beauty and the Beast theme as a chic lounge to enjoy cocktails before or after dinner.
A rendering of the Disney Wish's Frozen Dining Adventure, Disney’s first Frozen-themed theatrical dining experience. Photo Credit: Disney Cruise Line
Disney Wish staterooms and suites
Last but not least, staterooms and suites will continue to be family-friendly, as most will be outfitted with Disney’s signature split-bathroom concept (with a sink and shower in one compartment, and a sink and toilet in the other). Of the 1,254 cabins, 70% will have verandas, and 90% will feature ocean views. There will also be more than 900 connecting staterooms.
“Enchantment truly waits inside every one of our staterooms and our suites onboard the beautiful Disney Wish,” said Lisa Picket, hotel director at DCL. This includes more than doubling the Concierge offerings (for 76 in total) and including four royal suites (two of which will be two stories high, with a spiral staircase). There will also be an exclusive Concierge lounge, which has tripled in size, as well as a private sun deck and premium dedicated service.
“For the first time ever we will have concierge staterooms above the bridge [onboard Disney Wish], which will be giving never-before-seen vantage points for our guests to enjoy [and] floor-to-ceiling windows for some stellar views as we sail,” Picket said.
Source: TraveAge West