Category Archives: Disney Cruise Line

The Magic of the Disney Characters

Minnie Mouse on Disney's Private Island, Castaway Cay
Minnie Mouse on Disney’s Private Island, Castaway Cay

There’s something truly special about the Disney characters . I grew up going to Disneyland, and one of my earliest memories of the Disney characters was when the Big Bad Wolf was in a parade and came over to me and I cried! It’s kind of funny now. Since my last name is Wolf, I think we’re kind of family.

I’ve had many wonderful memories of the Disney characters since that old wolf scared the heck out of me, and into my adulthood I have never stopped getting that special feeling about the characters. I’ve witnessed grown adults crying tears of joy when meeting them, and I have heard extraordinary stories firsthand of how the Disney characters have touched people’s lives.

It remains exciting for me to see the characters in different situations. When I was working on a project for Disney back in the ’90s, I obtained a list of what’s called “overdressings” for Mickey. It’s Mickey’s special wardrobe besides his usual outfit. There was Mickey’s space outfit, Mickey’s patriotic outfit, a cowboy outfit, raincoat and hat, and hundreds of others. I feel these outfits bring new dimension, versatility and freshness to the characters.

Seeing the Disney characters in the “real world,” is also a special experience. The first time I saw Mickey Mouse outside of Disneyland was in 1988 when I was working at the Disney Studios, and Mickey visited the lot for his 60th birthday celebration. It’s a different feeling when he steps out of his world and into yours, making everything that much more believable. They had a photo location for employees to get a Polaroid photo with the birthday boy. There was a long line, and it was all adults waiting to snap a special moment!  There was certainly no doubt that  Mickey and his friends were not just for kids.

One place that you can meet the Disney characters away from the resorts is on a Disney Cruise! Yes, those characters get around! It’s great to travel to an island in the Bahamas, but even more memorable to disembark and see Captain Hook and Mr. Smee, from “Peter Pan”, with the beautiful tropical backdrop! (You can see my photo of the duo on Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay here). Above is a photo I took of Minnie Mouse on Castaway Cay, with the Disney Dream cruise ship behind her.

There are two stories in particular that come to mind whenever I think of the impact of the Disney characters.

The 1977 Disneyland Ambassador to the World, Susan Donald Edwards  told me her memories of when she visited a children’s hospital with Mickey. A child who had been stricken with cancer talked to Mickey and the nurses seemed stunned. They were literally in tears. It wasn’t until after the meeting that Susan learned the child had not spoken for two weeks.

A similar story to Susan, the 1974 Disneyland Ambassador to the World, Carol DeKeyser Masters told me of when she visited a children’s hospital with Mickey Mouse. A little boy who had suffered a brain injury from a car accident had not spoken for over two years, and the specialists were trying to determine if he was what they call elective mute or if the brain was just not able to form words. When Carol and Mickey entered the room, the boy said, “Mickey Mouse,” and doctors and nurses fell to their knees crying. Carol did not learn of the situation until after the situation, and then was moved to tears herself.

I believe that these stories really emphasize that the Disney characters are not just special, but that there really is something magical about them.

Interview: Orlando Ferrante (Coordinating Disney parks and classic attractions)

Disney Legend and Imagineer, Orlando Ferrante
Disney Legend and Imagineer, Orlando Ferrante

I just posted my interview with Disney Legend and Imagineer, Orlando Ferrante, who talks about his time coordinating everything from attractions to complete Disney parks, as well as Disney’s participation in the 1964/1965 New York World’s Fair, and the Disney Cruise Line. CLICK HERE for the interview

Interview: Gary Krueger (Disney photographer)

Classic Disneyland postcard photographed by Gary Krueger
Classic Disneyland postcard
photographed by Gary Krueger

I just posted my interview with Gary Krueger on my Mouse Clubhouse website. In this conversation, Gary talks about his times photographing Disneyland, Walt Disney World, Disney movie premieres and much more – and you’ll see lots of postcards of Gary’s photography!  CLICK HERE for the interview and postcards

Enjoy Christmas or Halloween on a Disney Cruise!

Halloween on the Disney Wonder cruise ship
Halloween on the Disney Wonder cruise ship

Halloween on the High Seas with Very Merrytime Cruises return to Disney Cruise Line in 2016 with holiday fun for everyone! I can tell you from personal experience, there’s an added sense of adventure when you’re watching a spooky story on the balcony of a Disney Cruise at night surround by nothingness as far as the eye can see, as we did in the photo Scott took, pictured above.

Thrills and chills await you during Halloween on the High Seas, thanks to not-so-scary parties, eerie entertainment and bewitching décor – including an evolving Halloween tree that transforms throughout the cruise. Sail dates include:

Disney Magic – Oct. 2-29 , 2016

Disney Dream – Sept. 2-Oct. 31, 2016

Disney Fantasy – Sept. 3-Oct. 29, 2016

And, during Very Merrytime Cruises, your Clients can delight in seasonal magic at sea as they discover a jolly fusion of holiday-themed entertainment, activities and décor. Sail dates include:

Disney Magic – Nov. 5-Dec. 23, 2016

Disney Wonder – Nov .10-Dec. 23, 2016

Disney Dream – Nov. 7-Dec. 22, 2016

Disney Fantasy – Nov. 19-Dec. 24, 2016

Let me help bring you tricks and treats or fa la la’s at sea, Disney style! Contact me for more information or to book a cruise!

Disney Cruise Line unveils new itineraries for summer 2017

 

Disney Cruise Line has just unveiled new itineraries for summer 2017! This exciting summer season features new itineraries and new ports, including first-time visits to new destinations in Alaska and Europe. Watch this video to learn more!

Set sail on a vacation full of discovery, adventure and culture—summer 2017 itineraries have been released and exciting ports of call across Alaska, Europe, and the Caribbean are just begging to be explored!

When you travel the world with Disney, you’ll experience impeccable attention to detail, distinctive service and original, award-winning entertainment. Disney Cruise Line truly offers something for everyone—from Broadway-style musicals to family-friendly activities, kids’ clubs, adults-only lounges and more. Your perfect paradise awaits!

Bookings open to Platinum and Gold Castaway Club Guests April 13 and to all other Guests April 14. Please contact me for a free quote or for more information.

Baja – sailing from San Diego for 3-night cruise May 14, 2017 – contact me for a free quote
Celebrate something special with a weekend jaunt from San Diego to Ensenada—a captivating city known for its stellar surfing conditions, innovative cuisine and legendary hot springs.

Disney Cruise Line 2017 summer ports include new destinations in Alaska and Europe
Disney Cruise Line 2017 summer ports include new destinations in Alaska and Europe

Alaska
Coast through hypnotic landscapes during your 5- , 7- or 9-night journey to charming towns, including Skagway and Ketchikan—select cruises include a peek at Hubbard Glacier and a stop at Icy Strait Point.

Northern Europe
Drift across crystal blue waters and explore scenic cities like St. Petersburg, Helsinki and Stockholm. Plus, stroll through the storybook-like streets of Amsterdam during a new 10-night sailing from Copenhagen to Dover.

Norwegian Fjords
Glide past mystical fjords and colorful coastal homes on a 7-night adventure from Copenhagen to 4 Norwegian towns. Or take a 10-night roundtrip from Dover, England, which whisks you to Iceland, Scotland and a pair of captivating Norwegian port cities.

British Isles
Traverse the spectacular Inner and Outer Hebrides off the west coast of Scotland on a 12-night roundtrip adventure out of Dover that travels to ports of call throughout England, France, Germany and Ireland.

Mediterranean
Spice up your summer with a roundtrip cruise from Barcelona. Itineraries ranging from 5 to 10 nights invite you to roam the bustling streets of picturesque cities in Spain, Italy and France. And you can reflect on each one’s distinct character as you recharge at sea.

Transatlantic
Delve into the rich history of several port cities—including the newly added Portland, England (Stonehenge) and Amsterdam, Netherlands. There’s a bounty of sights for you to discover over the course of your 15-night sailing.

Southern Caribbean
Take rest and relaxation to the next level when you choose a brand new 10- or 11-night itinerary from Port Canaveral that transports you to idyllic islands like Aruba, Barbados and Curacao—each boasting a diverse array of land and sea activities.

Eastern Caribbean
Surround yourself with crystal blue waters, powder-soft beaches and nonstop family fun on a 6- to 7-night cruise leading you to treasured islands like Tortola, St. John’s and Castaway Cay.

Western Caribbean
Soak up the natural beauty and vibrant cultures of 3 tropical ports of call—Cozumel, Grand Cayman and Falmouth, Jamaica—during a 7-night roundtrip cruise from Port Canaveral that includes a fun stop at Castaway Cay.

Bahamas
Navigate your way to the tropical shores of Nassau and Castaway Cay. Plus, enjoy an extra dose of Disney’s private island-a series of 4- and 5-night “double dip” cruises grants you 2 fun-filled stops at this beloved retreat.

Panama Canal
Savor top-notch amenities aboard a 14-night coast-to-coast cruise that takes you through the world-famous Panama Canal and calls upon 4 blissful port cities in Mexico and Columbia, before you land in San Diego.

 

Disney Cruise Line – All That’s Included!

When you sail with Disney Cruise Line, you’ll find it’s all those little extras you get that add up to the most incredible vacation of your life. It’s all the accommodations, dining and entertainment – all included in the price of your cruise! Enjoy this video to learn more. Please contact me with questions or to get a free quote for your Disney cruise. I’m happy to help!

 

Disney Cruise Line - All That's Included!
Disney Cruise Line – All That’s Included!

Star Wars Day at Sea returns to Disney Cruise Line in early 2017

Star Wars Day at Sea returns in 2017
Star Wars Day at Sea returns in 2017

Returning in early 2017, Disney Cruise Line you and your family can celebrate the legendary adventures and iconic characters from the Star Wars saga during Star Wars Day at Sea.

New in 2017, the Disney Fantasy special sailings expand to both eastern and western Caribbean itineraries and nearly double in number to 15 cruises. During this day-long celebration, Star Wars Day at Sea combines the power of the Force and the magic of Disney for an out-of-this-galaxy cruise experience unlike any other.

Each sailing features a full day of dark side and light side fun, including official appearances of Star Wars characters, a deck party and fireworks, Star Wars-themed family and youth activities, at-sea screenings of Star Wars films, unique food and beverage offerings, and special merchandise.

Throughout the day, Star Wars Younglings, Padawans and Jedi Masters alike can enjoy the immersive and intergalactic entertainment, including a deck party and fireworks display, exclusive event merchandise, and specialty Star Wars-themed food and beverage items.

Characters from across the Star Wars galaxy will also be onboard for interactions, photos and also may be seen patrolling the decks. And, in “Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple,” Force-sensitive children learn the ways of the Jedi and use their new-found skill in a final face off with Darth Vader.

Star Wars Day at Sea will be on Disney Fantasy seven-night cruises sailing from Port Canaveral on Jan. 7, 14, 21, 28; Feb. 4, 11, 18, 25; March 4, 11, 18, 25; April 1, 8 and 15, 2017.

Departing Jan. 7, 21; Feb. 4, 18; March 4, 18; April 1 and 15, 2017, the western Caribbean itinerary includes Cozumel, Mexico; Falmouth, Jamaica; Grand Cayman and Disney’s private island in the Bahamas, Castaway Cay. Departing Jan. 14, 28; Feb. 11, 25; March 11, 25; and April 8, 2017, the eastern Caribbean itinerary includes Tortola, St. Thomas and Castaway Cay.

Click here for a free quote and for more information.

Snapshot Sunday: Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic show

Snapshot Sunday: Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic aboard the Disney Wonder
Snapshot Sunday: Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic aboard the Disney Wonder – shot with a Sony RX100 II

This Snapshot Sunday photo was taken on a Disney Cruise aboard the Disney Wonder. The ship’s show, “Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic” is a Broadway-style spectacular which includes all the best of what Disney has to offer.

I took this photo with my Sony RX100 II and used an ISO of 800. On my RX100 IV I probably would have gone up to 1600. I used the minimal aperture, which was 2.8 since I zoomed in a bit. I purposely kept some of audience silhouette to show it was a live show. Because there was some quick action I should have brought the shutter up at least to 160 and then brightened the photo later, but I got lucky with a shutter of 100 and still retaining sharpness. I love the how the natural lighting helped make Mickey and Minnie the focal point.

Feel free to write or comment if you want any more details about the photos, such as settings I used, etc.

Disney Cruise Line announces two new ships

Two new Disney ships are scheduled for 2021 and 2023
Two new Disney ships are scheduled for 2021 and 2023

Here’s some big cruise news that we’re very excited about! The Disney Cruise Line announced plans today to build two additional cruise ships.

Now, when we say “big” news, we mean big! The new ships, each approximately 135,000 gross tons with about 1,250 guest staterooms, will be slightly larger than the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy! These new vessels will be built at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany, but you’ll have to wait until 2021 and 2023 to experience these Disney resorts on the sea.

While design plans, ship names and itineraries are still in development, the Walt Disney Imagineering team is already dreaming up exciting new ways to create the world’s most magical oceangoing adventures and we’ll share details with you as soon as we learn more.

Ill be happy to help you set sail on these new ships in the future, but if you haven’t experienced a Disney Cruise yet, I’d love to help you plan a Disney Cruise on one of the four existing ships, for a vacation you’ll never forget!

“SEA” ya real soon!