July 16, 2022

Cruising On The Disney Wish

Cruising On The Disney Wish

It’s not every day Disney Cruise Line adds a new ship to their fleet, and it’s even rarer to get the opportunity to sail on a ship’s christening voyage. A couple weeks ago the planets aligned, and Heather and Jeff got just such an opportunity, and were a...


It’s not every day Disney Cruise Line adds a new ship to their fleet, and it’s even rarer to get the opportunity to sail on a ship’s christening voyage. A couple weeks ago the planets aligned, and Heather and Jeff got just such an opportunity, and were among the first to check out all that Disney Cruise Line has to offer on the brand new Disney Wish. We’ll hear about bars, and restaurants, and pools, and bars, and the awesome kids clubs, and bars, the gorgeous staterooms, and the bars, the upgraded entertainment opportunities, the AquaMouse, the bars, stupid elevators and epic slides, and bars, and partying with Chairman of Disney Parks and Resorts Josh D’Amaro, and the bars. There’s lots of bars. But also, lots of other great ways to have an amazing voyage with Disney Cruise Line. Check it out!

 

Don’t forget, we’re trying something new this summer, and releasing our news segment and theme park segment as two individual episodes. This helps spread all the great content we cover out over the week so you don’t miss us as much in between episodes, and also makes it easier to listen back to episodes in the future, without dated and irrelevant news stories. We hope. Make sure you’re subscribed to the show on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcatcher app, and that our show is set to automatically download. And let us know what you think about our new format!

 

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Transcript

Disney Wish Hosts

Dan: Welcome back to another meeting of the gold key adventurous society. My name is Dan Leonard in joining me the, and joining me this week in the studio is Heather Strait. And Mr. Jeff Williams. Oh boy, we're bringing the, bringing the down home again. Our show is always brought to you by key to the world.

Travel key to the world. Travel is a full service travel agency, specializing in theme parks, cruising and destinations around the world. Head to www dot key to the world. travel.com for more details and a no obligation quote on the vacation of a lifetime. Seems like, seems like it's been at least a month since we got together last.

And that's

Heather: think so.

Dan: We've all been busy traveling and the most recent adventure that Jeff and Heather have had is onboard the new Disney wish cruise ship,

Heather: The beautiful, the magical, the Disney wish.

Jeff: The very large.

Dan: Yeah, it's a, it's a, it is a ship and a half actually. It's just one ship, but it's big. Yeah, so y'all were on the, the christening voyage of it.

And I wanna hear all about

Heather: Yes,

Dan: thought.

Heather: it's big Dan. It's a big, it's a big ship.

Jeff: When you pull up to it and you see it, it doesn't look any bigger, but it has the same spaces, but they're all just plused.

Heather: Mm-hmm everything.

Jeff: board that, that middle atrium entryway atrium thing is just monstrous now,

Heather: it really is. And

Jeff: I like, cuz it's far less crowded.

Heather: Yeah. And they they always had in the evening, there would be some live music and they did some little shows in that area, but it, it was always so crowded because it wasn't really designed to be a. An entertainment space. So they, they fixed that.

Now there's a stage and a beautiful, beautiful, two story performance area and a little balcony above the stage where

Jeff: Where the elevator used to be, the mid midship elevator used to be is now not that it's a stage with screens above it, and the screens can be curtained or not. And there's interactive stuff on that screen and greetings when you walk on and then above that is a balcony where various princesses and S would greet the guests as we were.

Onboarding mm-hmm yeah.

Heather: And it's funny until you just said that it did not occur to me that that's where the midship elevator went. That's why it's not there anymore. Yes, because there are only two elevator banks now forward and AFT they're larger with more elevators. But they completely took out the midship

Jeff: yeah, I think there's eight or 10 elevators at each stop.

Heather: it's a

Jeff: they're fast. You never really wait long for 'em.

Heather: mm-hmm but should we, should we talk about that right off the bat? That even though they are fast and plentiful, they are stupid.

Jeff: Ye sure.

Dan: You brought it up. So now you

Heather: yeah, I know

Jeff: Yeah, we did mention the elevator. So at each elevator at each end, but particularly AFT no, the four.

Heather: Both there, there are

Jeff: Forward and AFT, but there are things that are on floors, 12 and 13 at each of

Heather: Adult only

Jeff: adult dining, but only two of the eight or 10 elevators at that bank actually go to 13 and you can't call just that one.

So if you need to go to 13, you press up. One might open that only goes to 10 or 11.

Dan: That's

Heather: And it is stupid. And it's, it's, your choices are either to stand there and keep waiting until the correct one comes, which you have to have been on board a little bit to figure out which two it is

Jeff: And it is the farthest two

Heather: mm-hmm

Jeff: the stairs at each of those stops.

Heather: get off at the highest floor, you can, and then go find a way to climb the stairs

Jeff: Yeah. You go out on deck and then go up one.

Dan: that, and that would've been so easy to fix both the Aventura hotel at universal and that CR paradise pier at Disneyland, both have elevators that you tell it what. Not just what floor, but what room you want to go to,

Heather: Yes. And the, they have that at Coronado at the grand Dustino tower. Mm-hmm it's a smart elevator. Yep. That is what they needed to have installed because it's and I tell you when we were, we were looking for polo and all Shante, the adults only dining a couple of times we had to ask because we went up as far as we could, not on the correct

Jeff: Yeah. How the hell do you get to this?

Heather: Then we had to try and find a staircase that went to them and it's, that's gonna be, that's gonna be a pain point and that,

Jeff: It's

Heather: gonna need to address. Yeah, I'm in, I'm interested to see what I will also be on the embarrassment of riches. I will also be on the inaugural maiden voyage sailing next week.

And I it's gonna be the first revenue sailing where people have paid a significant amount of money

Jeff: Yeah, so full disclosure, Heather paid to be on that one booked before any of this up, but because of our travel agency, we were blessed to be invited on. It was a media and industry sales, mostly crews only for this other thing, the, yeah. And it was amazing. And what was especially weird, there was like 45 kids on the

Heather: Yeah. There are very few children

Dan: Again, you

Jeff: Mm-hmm that was strange.

Heather: Very crowded bars.

Jeff: like good morning, America was there and their whole staff and crew and all this international, we, it was weird. You'd be walking by and it's just, just like at guardians, there's some foreign TV show talking about this new ship and it was amazing. It was everywhere you went, it was media and stuff.

And captains and people doing interviews.

Heather: John Stamos.

Jeff: John was on board.

Heather: I cannot actually, he, he bumped into me. It was magical.

Jeff: thinking of filing his training order. He's getting a bit, stalkery like look Stamos. It was one time it was in the nineties. Let's move on. But other than the elevators, I think generally they fixed all of the weird pinch points that there used to be on those ships.

Heather: I agree.

Jeff: all the bottlenecking that there used to be in certain areas seems to have been addressed, although we weren't on a fully crowded ship. So you'll find out more in two weeks isn't there another mode of transportation that one of you guys had a problem with

Heather: my gosh. Yes. So the kids clubs, one of the cool new features about the ocean ears club.

Dan: though, going down.

Heather: Yes. There is a, there is a slide that you can slide down from the the grand atrium. The, the ocean years club now is on deck two. And you can slide from deck three down onto deck two. And as it turns out, they will during open house or on a media cruise, they'll let adults try out this slide.

And so I did. And I, I had some proud, proud, firsts onboard this ship. I was the first injury report that had to be filed because I was wearing a, a skirt that's made out of like a dry fit material. So very, very slippery. And it's a metal slide and it was so fast. I flew

Jeff: of it's metal and then it's a clear tube and then it's metal again. And she shot out of there, like a rocket.

Heather: Flew out the end and skinned, both elbows, one of which was bleeding and yeah, it was

Jeff: the reason there will be a pad

Heather: Yeah. They should, they should put one cause it's that, that I did have a bit of issue with

Jeff: So she, we, she asked for a bandaid at the ocean ears club there and they said, yeah, babe, I gotta fill out this report.

Heather: we're opening up the first aid kit. I need your name, your state room and the nature of your injury.

Dan: he have to, did he have to remove the plastic shrink wrap from the first

Jeff: Yes, he literally did. was underneath there. And so we got two, we had two firsts. We were the first bottle of MOED ice that they cracked on the ship. And the first crack open of the uh, first AIDCA and the incident.

Heather: In the kids

Jeff: Little file thing. It's like the thing contractors carry that. Keep the sheets in there where you fill it out.

So we, we got to crack that

Heather: that was fun.

Dan: Disney would've given you certificates for both of those

Heather: That's true. That is true. And it's, it's interesting because you don't think about, I had never really thought about this before, when the ship is done and it leaves the shipyard. It's not really finished once they delivered the ship to Disney. Now it's Disney's job to actually do all the finishing of on the inside.

So

Jeff: and painting and varnishing and lighting effects

Heather: all of that

Jeff: video

Heather: done while they're making their crossing. From the shipyard. And a lot of it was not done. They, they were several weeks behind and they got it to the point where just glancing around. You wouldn't notice it, but things like the, the wooden stair rails were

Jeff: the handrails on all of the rails, all of the staircases, the banisters everywhere, not varnished yet sanded and wood glued and filled and sealed and all that, but not varnished. Yep.

Heather: The, the deck, a lot of the tea on the deck was not sealed yet. And, and you could see where they had been sanding some spots and some painting and caulking that still needed to be done. And they got it to the, they, they canceled actually the fir it's. So it is so beautiful. They canceled the first two cast member.

They call 'em shakedown cruises, wear cast, and bring their family on. And. Just run through everything. They canceled those to have time to work. But when we were exiting, they were still bringing on work crews to finish off all that

Jeff: Yeah. They had a ton of local Orlando work contractors that were coming on in paint scrubs and.

Heather: getting it all finished, but it is absolutely beautiful. It feels, I always found Disney's ships to be elevated and they have that elegant glam

Jeff: like a Disney

Heather: mm-hmm but more. It's it's more like a four seasons on the, on the ocean.

Jeff: it's less of the 1990s

Heather: Yeah.

Jeff: white blue. Look.

Heather: That's really gone. It's all Mo more modern, bright,

Jeff: The rooms are shaped almost exactly the same one upgrade for anybody that's been on. They have a split bath, which is unique to Disney cruise line. So one of one half of the bath is a sink in a toilet. The other half that's closest to the bedroom part is A sink, vanity shelves and a shower. And it used to be like a terrible little

Heather: Tiny

Jeff: shower or the tiniest tear.

This, they, they ate up more of that room and made a shower door full size. It's a nice wide, easy to move around in shower.

Heather: door.

Jeff: And it's nice, great water pressure. All that the, the room with the toilet in it is slightly smaller, but perfectly fine. It was great. So one person could be brushing teeth or pooping or both.

You could brush your teeth while you poop

Heather: brush your teeth while

Jeff: else is showering. Yeah. but the rooms are basically shaped, shaped how they were, but the textiles and everything are more elevated and updated and prettier, softer looking softer color palettes just far less nineties. Yes.

Heather: tons and tons of USB. Charging ports there's even a USBC charging port. Something we didn't know until we had a watched a little panel discussion with the Imagineers is they've, they've replaced every bulb on the ship with L E D. And so now pretty much every bulb, every light in your state room can be dimed except for the ones in the bathroom.

But they did put a nightlight in the toilet room so that you could leave that on. And it's one of those, that's like an Amber red color, so it's not bright. And when you open the door, it doesn't make your entire

Jeff: Yeah. It's only lit up right along the baseboards too. It's sunken in under the base trim, baseboard trim. Yeah.

Heather: It's a great, it was a really great thing to think of. And the whole, the whole ship felt more. Adult, without taking away from all of the fantastic kids areas, the kids clubs on this are somehow even better than the, their other ships, which were always really

Jeff: Speaking of the slide into the kid club there, we saw the ocean ears club is massive on this one. It's Probably twice the size of the other ships and each, each theme has its own huge space. So there's a central receiving area that's just called ocean club. And then it moves into the different sections from there.

Heather: And each section is that there's something for every kid. Really? The, the Marvel superhero academy we walked in and at first we're like, what exactly do you do in here?

Jeff: Yeah. Yeah. Same with the star wars till somebody explained it.

Heather: Yeah, the star

Jeff: the Marvel one, you scan yourself. So it takes a scan picture of you. And then you get to pick your superhero costume. So you can be capes and hats or whatever, name, your character. And then it does a scan of that. And then there's all these interactive VR games you can play that put you into the storyline.

Heather: your suit. Yeah, really cool. And then they,

Jeff: Though how you pick your car while you're waiting in line for test track. So you, you do all that, but then you can do something with it.

Dan: That is

Heather: But then there will also be counselors in every spot who will do. Group activities and the kids that want to do that, can the kids that don't don't have to,

Jeff: I noticed in the star wars area, they did not have the fly of the Falcon thing anymore.

Heather: no, it's a whole different it's it's the star wars cargo bay. And the whole thing looks like you're in the cargo bay of the Falcon instead of the cockpit

Jeff: so you get to handle luggage, I guess that'll be

Heather: yeah they have a loath cat and they have a pork. Animatronic in there, which are super cute. And there are some other VR games in there and then Ray and chewy stop by all the time,

Jeff: Yeah, they did have a schedule in the navigator of all the different character meets. So they have, there's a fairytale hall or something where char princesses go Mickey and mini make appearances in there. They have that lab and cooking thing where

Heather: is cool. Mm-hmm

Jeff: all that this place is, is just

Heather: this one

Jeff: and so beautifully themed.

Heather: imaginary lab where you kids, kids learn about making their own attractions and they have one of those did y'all ever go to Disney quest and they had the virtual hyperspace mountain where you could design your own coaster. They have that in on the wish in the imaginary lab.

Dan: Mm-hmm nice. Nice.

Heather: And in the fairy tale hall, there were some really cool activities in there that I thought were great. One of 'em is bell has the whole the whole story time thing, but then she also teaches kids how to write a story and they write their own story. And then Rapunzel is the, the, the art themed section.

So there are times when kids can do art with Rapunzel and then

Jeff: And then all the typical group stuff with dance parties and.

Heather: Mickey and mini's captain's deck is just it's just a playground slides and all that kind of stuff. It with the

Jeff: was weird touring it though. Cause it was all industry and media people, not a

Heather: Not one kid.

Jeff: it was weird. I guess this'll be cool for kids, but like it usually if when those things are open, there's also children in there. So I'm not a child the whole time.

Heather: It was weird. But you can see how great it's gonna be. And I

Jeff: Oh it's yeah.

Heather: kids won't wanna leave honestly. And then they also

Jeff: is

Heather: yeah. Then they also have kid space. Edge is pretty cool edges for kids 11 to 14, and they have kept that completely separate from vibe. Like it's on a different deck than vibe, which is 14 to 17, but this ship is the first time they have an actual space that's for older teens, 18 to 20, who they, they are technically allowed in the lounges, but they can't drink yet.

So maybe they don't wanna hang out there.

Jeff: And it's

Heather: Yeah. So they have their own space called the hideaway, but it is attached to vibe. So I think it's gonna be a situation where you got a, a 16 year old and an 18 year old in your group. They still will get a little bit of access to hanging out with each other.

Cause there's always crew members. The, the counselors are in both of those. They were

Jeff: and it is a separate room, but it looks like the main entrance is into vibe. And then you go into the hideaway from there, at least as far as we could remember and find on our

Heather: Yeah. They had foosball tables and air hockey and video games. And the hide away for the older teens has a DJ booth and a smoothie bar. And that's cool stuff. It,

Jeff: it all kinda looked like Monica's apartment on

Heather: yeah, very much yes.

Jeff: was very urban loft feel to

Heather: think that was intentional. I think they said that they made it look like a New York loft on purpose.

Jeff: but artsy and cool, like cool art pieces and a lot of neat graffiti or Japanese style, art of Mickey and different stuff, but definitely trendy and cool, but not, not over the

Heather: don't wanna be too cool, cuz then it's no longer. Cool. Oh

Jeff: the cool thing about these is it has windows,

Heather: yeah.

Jeff: and edge on the other ships were always down in these little dark windowless hallway things.

And this one has full floor, ceiling windows. So you get more natural light and you.

Heather: Mm-hmm the interesting thing I thought was which I cannot remember which ship it is that vibe had its own sundeck and little pool. Out on the front.

Jeff: That's on the fantasy.

Heather: fantasy? Yeah, they've turned that into the spa now, because if you've ever been above that, on that ship, looking down in vibe, there's never any teenagers hanging out

Jeff: teenagers

Heather: They didn't, know that. Yeah.

Jeff: outside. They're all inside playing video games. It was.

Heather: So they made that the spa. So now the spa has this beautiful outdoor. That's the hydrotherapy circuit. It's all outside and it's got hot tubs and loungers and really nice. And they they can sell those passes to the spa and make some money on it. It was a great, great use of that space instead of vibe, I thought.

Jeff: Yeah, the spa is really beautiful on this ship. It seems smaller to me maybe because the consider the outside part as part of the footprint of it, but the, so the inside's a little bit smaller

Heather: they moved the fitness center out. It's now on the other side of the ship.

Jeff: the hall. Yeah.

Heather: So that may you're maybe right. That's why it feels a little smaller, cuz it doesn't have that in there. The adult areas. They're now not just in one spot in the back of the ship. They're everywhere. There are bars and lounges.

We kept finding new ones. Which is always my favorite. Oh, look a new bar.

Jeff: star wars bar, the hyperspace lounge is super, super cool. And they were immediately figured out this thing isn't big enough. And everybody wants to go here. I don't know why that was a surprise to

Heather: I come on

Jeff: but it was so literally day one, they were slammed day two. They had it where you had to put your name on a is basically like a virtual queue.

And then you come back, you get a 45 minute window, but. At least for the one we were on the bar was open seating. So they said we could have 45 minutes and we, they were gonna put us with Nana and pop pop. I was like,

Heather: Oh, yeah, they were saying, are you

Jeff: sit with these old farts.

Heather: behind you who

Jeff: Put these people, put you with these people at a, for top.

I was like they're literally like the oldest people in the world. We're not sitting with them. And so there was another couple in front of him. I was like, can we sit with them? And then they say I wanted to sit at the bar and he goes, oh, you can. Open seating at the bar. So we went in and we were there for four and a half hours.

Heather: accidentally spent almost

Jeff: accidentally got super space drunk. It was

Heather: in the space bar.

Jeff: So we tried basically everything on the menu. A lot of it is good. A lot of it's weird.

Heather: So if you've been on a Disney cruise and in the adults area, you'll remember skyline on the dream, in the fantasy, which has all these screens and it makes you it, the screens chain. So for a while, you're in Paris and then you're in Rio or Chicago or New York.

Jeff: and the music changes depending on where

Heather: So that's what, now you are on the, in the hyperspace lounge. You're on a ship and you're light speed jumping from Choson to Batu to tattoo to a, an, a belt. So there's one other place. Oh yes. MOAF far I forgot about MOAF far. Very

Jeff: Cause everything's Yes.

the sound effects and everything are real cool.

Heather: And there's space battles right outside the window. It's very

Jeff: of 'em were real hairy. There's some major war going on in some of the planets and outside. Some of 'em were serene and cool, but than one star war. Whoa.

oh

Heather: saw star wars plural.

Jeff: just everything that, honestly that space two 20 should be.

Heather: Yes. And

Jeff: there's nothing happening out

Heather: Yeah, that's true. Let's let's address the $5,000 cocktail. Yes, it does exist. They, they sold one the first night of the cruise and then they immediately cut off sales and we suspect this might be because everybody that was on this cruise that was given a credential, had two drink tickets on it.

And there were no fine print. It. Any cocktail and so very quickly . Yes.

Jeff: As hell would've

Heather: So we really think that's why they shut it down because 200 media were gonna be in there trying to get the $5,000 cocktail. And they were pretty mom about what is included, but we like to charm bartenders. And so we charm some bartenders.

Jeff: Tip. I think the word you're looking for is

Heather: Yes. And we're very personable and we like

Jeff: I've heard conflicting things.

Heather: yes, we've seen some media reports since we've been on the show or on the ship that don't have the same inclusions as what the bartenders told us. The one thing we, that was in those reports that the bartenders did tell us was that it includes an invitation to Skywalker ranch.

Dan: is not open to the public.

Heather: Is not,

Dan: is a private

Heather: yes. You cannot buy your way in, other than paying the, for this $5,000

Jeff: it comes with a bottle or your choice of any of the Skywalker wa vineyards wines. And it comes with four, like super expensive shots of

Heather: of them is Pappy Vanwinkle.

Jeff: Yeah. It's like the one that's above Pappy. U Vanwinkle. It's like the,

Dan: PPY van weel family reserve. It's a $6,000 bottle of bourbon.

Heather: Yes. And they

Jeff: yeah. So it has a shot of

Heather: plated

Jeff: They come in silver plated shot glasses. You get to keep, but what we heard, I heard one thing that said those silver plated shot glasses. So the other one say it comes with. One bartender said a Rolex watch. The other one said that other brand that I hadn't heard

Heather: Helo.

Jeff: Helo

Heather: Yeah. And one bartender told us that you got to keep the can, what is it called? The, the cont Canton. Yeah. But, but the other two told us, no, it, you don't get to keep that. So I think that's probably true.

Dan: but you get the tray that the cups were on,

Jeff: yeah, it comes out of the thing. And apparently there's some sort of, you get a room decoration thing afterwards and an escort character escort off the ship. So I'm thinking you get marched off by storm troopers or

Heather: that would be cool. Yeah.

Jeff: So I might have to drop five grand is what

Heather: Honestly, I think that the, the chance to go to Skywalker ranch there, people have been flaming Disney online for having this really, really expensive drink, but there are many star

Jeff: people are acting like it's just a cup of drink

Heather: It is definitely not. There are so many star wars fans who would pay $5,000 just to go to Skywalker ranch without any of the rest of it.

Correct?

Dan: the most expensive thing on the ship. I saw a report that

 Jewelry shop, there's like a 13 million necklace,

Heather: 4

Jeff: on Dan. That's ridiculous. It's 4 million

Heather: saw it. We saw it and we got to touch it. Yeah. They

Jeff: she ask if Heather wanted

Heather: No, she does not. actually, Heather did wanna put it on, but did not.

Dan: But because you've got a travel agent that if they put the necklace on you, then you have to pay for it. That's what happens.

Jeff: But one of the 70 diamonds on this thing is 18 carrots.

Dan: Jesus.

Heather: yeah. . Yeah. it come and it, it also helpfully has a, a beautiful set of earrings and bracelet and ring that will compliment

Jeff: The earrings were only

Heather: yeah. if you dropped, if you bought the entire set, I think you would be running close to the 13 million that you heard. Yeah. But then just the necklace is a bargain at $4 million.

Dan: drop

Heather: I wanna know who, like, how do you go about purchasing this on a ship? Even someone who can afford

Jeff: yeah, that was my question. You gotta move money around for 4 million, no matter how much money. I guess

Dan: transfer service. And then does that include do they have a, a, a safety deposit box for you

Heather: right. Or armed guard, that one comes with an armed guard to escort you off.

Jeff: the storm troopers that just dropped off the other guy, but the we're just outside of that hyperspace lounge is my favorite of the. bars actually was the Bayou it's open air it's right in. There's a section that has like the higher end shops. And then this Bayou it's vaguely Tiana themed, but it's beautiful.

It's all new Orleans style drinks. They have absent, they have a beta beer all that kind of stuff. They have these basin jars full of fireflies for their lighting and then

Heather: so

Jeff: Like vines and stuff. Everywhere. It's beautiful, great, great service in that bar. That bar turned into a rager on the last night because all of the people who'd been working, all the media were done working the good morning.

America people didn't have to wake up at three the next day. And it was there weren't any children on the ship. There were like 7,000 people in that one bar

Heather: there was

Jeff: to were conga lines.

Heather: because

Jeff: it was crazy.

Heather: that, that area has a little little stage dedicated for live performers every night. And they had an eighties cover band and that was the perfect for the age of those of us aboard where yeah.

Jeff: the, the servers got so slammed that night, but they were impeccable. They handled it and they accidentally didn't charge us for seven or eight of our drinks. No,

Heather: The

Jeff: they, they hung in there. They were not acting frustrated or whatever the service was.

Heather: every crew member we encountered was so excited to be on the new ship and the service was

Jeff: pick of the litter from all, everybody that like the best of the best from all the ships are now on this ship. So service was impeccable

Heather: Even, even though this was really probably the first time that they were serving at this level on the ship and they were, they were great at dinner every night. So great. You can get benets at this at the Bayou. That was another one of their great thing. We also loved the pub,

Jeff: Yeah, the Kagan barrel. It's like

Heather: Yes. You're

Jeff: and compass. I always wanna co oh I think I'm thinking of Creighton

Heather: yes.

Jeff: Yeah. You could pick out some furniture.

Heather: Yes. My favorite part of Kegan compass was the wings. The bar snacks were

Jeff: food, giant, giant pretzels and wings and charcuterie board, but there's a whole thing, sort of Norway, Viking themed

Heather: I drank a beer out of a tooth.

Dan: Oh yeah.

Jeff: I think they might have been a horn.

Dan: Yeah. I think it's a

Heather: You're right. I think it was a horn. It was glass. It was cool.

Dan: That does look cool. I'm curious about that. Jeff, you, you posted about a hidden bourbon bar inside a

Heather: Ah,

Dan: Does

Jeff: They call ahead and

Dan: the barber serve you booze or is there like a little separate? Yeah,

Jeff: yeah. So with haircut comes one pour,

Dan: Nice.

Jeff: and then you can have additional pours added to your bill, but they have a really great it's mostly gentleman kind of stuff. So they had a lot of, it was mostly whiskey and stuff, but they had some higher end Rums, dark rums and all these different rums, bourbons, whiskey, scotch, that kind of thing.

And then some tequilas high end stuff there, but you could get a pour of from this shelf. So you could have your drink while they're cutting your hair or giving you a shave or whatever, but then

Heather: They have a pedicure chair just for the men.

Jeff: the gentleman,

Heather: Yes. You can be getting shaved while you're getting a pedicure.

Jeff: it's called hooks barber. So it's vaguely Peter pan and hook themed.

But the guy that was working the two times we walked by, looked just like Rufio from the, the hook movie. So I really kinda wanted him to shave my balls.

Dan: Nice.

Heather: I don't think

Jeff: No.

Heather: that's

Jeff: here's a funny aside. I, when we were in there during the day, when we boarded the ship, we went and looked at that level. So there's a little bar there we found. And then we were like, oh, here's the salon. Oh, here's the hooks barber. And. The hidden bar wasn't there. It was just some bookshelves, but apparently they opened that at a, a different time.

They flip it around and there's all these,

Heather: we couldn't find it when we were

Jeff: booze there. So we were coming back by and it was close and there was a guy outside, one of those the people on the ship that where the, the white uniforms crew members that weren't in costume.

Heather: an officer,

Jeff: Yeah, an officer. And I was like, oh look, the bar's open.

So I'm in the window, like a jackass taking pictures of whatever. It's some people drinking bourbon. And then the guy turns around and holds me up at cheers. And it's Josh tomorrow.

Dan: yeah.

Jeff: So I took four pictures. I'm just like, Ooh. And then I turned around. I was like, oh, Hey look, it's Josh. Jamar's with you. And he was sweet. He waved , but

Heather: He is so nice. He stops and talks and says hello to everyone. And

Jeff: over that ship. He. I was telling you the night of the last night there, what a insane scene. It was in that one bar. He wandered into their willingly and was doing champagne toast with everyone. I clinged glasses with him,

Heather: he was very fun.

Jeff: so nice knowing full well he's gonna get mobbed and all that, but he's definitely a man of the people.

He might be evil in doing stuff behind the scenes we don't know about, but he's good

Heather: but we don't care because he's so friendly and he is got a great smile and he is, he's a, he's a

Jeff: Yeah. And he'll take the time to acknowledge you and stop and talk and say hi and

Heather: I saw him giving some families a tour of the ship at one point he very much came on and was all about this is our flagship new. Experience for Disney cruise line. And it was, it was wonderful. Eck was there to Chris and her, and then he left

Jeff: Yeah, they said he was gonna be sailing. If he was sailing, he was in his cabin the whole time or hiding from the public. But Josh was very available for everybody.

Heather: yeah. Yeah. What else? I There's so many bars that just, just they're everywhere we kept.

Jeff: everywhere. They're not all in one place, which I think is nice. But my only worry about some of these bar spaces, other than hyperspace that you, you can't get in until they let you in. But. I, I th they're centralized, so I'm afraid there's gonna be more kids wanting to be in there cuz they're cool looking and they're, they're kind of everywhere.

Heather: One I didn't get to spend any time in was the champagne bar, because it was it's one that's up. You really can't get

Jeff: you can't find how to get there in the elevators

Heather: Yeah.

Jeff: so this replaced the Meridian bar, which used to be between Remi and pow. So this is what is it called? The rose. And it's sort of like, it's the replacement of Remi and also the champagne bar pink and, or ULA LA on the other ships. And it's beautiful and tons of good looking drinks and all kinds of champagne, but We didn't get to go in there.

Never made it up there.

Heather: rose. Yeah. hi, Paul, I'll get up there next week. Don't worry.

Jeff: I'm sure that you will the dining on this ship all completely different. The other four ships had. Slightly different skews on things. This is 100% different than anything you've seen. 1923 is their sort of steakhouse high end thing. It looks like a, it looks a lot like steakhouse 55 at Disneyland did before they closed it.

Heather: like Hollywood glitz, glamor,

Jeff: the whole thing is 1920s, Hollywood look a lot of ephemera and cases all around. One thing they've done is divide the monstrous. This, these two restaurants are giant and they've divided them in half a Walt side and a Roy side. So that up further split it. And then each one is corded off into room.

So it doesn't feel like a big loud cavernous room. Like the other ship restaurants do.

Heather: But the cool thing about the other two experiences is they've combined character meals into both of those restaurants, which previously the character meals were. Yes. But previously the character meals were something extra that not everybody got to do that you had to try to book.

When your booking window opened and not everybody got them. And now if you go to your three rotational dinings, you will get two character meals

Jeff: Mm-hmm

Heather: and they're not, they're, it's more of a dinner show. It's not the traditional character meal, or there's just characters walking around to your tables. You take a picture the Marvel one had a Antman and the wasp show that was going on, it was like they were recording a show and then a superhero takeover thing happened. That was very much like animator's palette. Similar to that, but

you get

Jeff: cool fresh food was good. Food was not great. The other two restaurants food was great.

 But Erindale, we had zero expectation of the frozen who

Heather: Erin Dell. Yeah, I actually thinking about it was like, if I'm gonna skip something, it's gonna be this one, cuz I don't need a frozen

Jeff: don't skip

Heather: Do not skip it.

Jeff: It's an awesome meal. Everything that everybody at our table had was wonderful. They do a whole show. There's a center stage, like in the round, they do a whole singing show where there's these what do you call those?

The, the muse or whatever the. Piper, what, what are those Troubador type people that are singing and whatever, and then they start telling the story. And then as the characters come on, all you got all off and a really cool animat ooff, who's

Heather: it was to the point where they had the whole restaurant singing along with thongs from frozen. And you might think that that's a roll your eye moment. It was not, it was so fun. We were all getting

Jeff: did a big twist on let it go that you wouldn't expect. And it snowed in there.

Heather: Yeah. It was great.

Dan: you're nothing better than snow to make, to make some

 And, and think about the fact that what you pointed out at the beginning, there were no kids there and they had that room full of adults

Jeff: They had 500 adults in there

Heather: and every single one of us was singing along. It was so great.

Jeff: Then then the characters at different times, come off the stage and work around to the tables. They're not signing autographs at all, but you can get a picture and

Heather: it's a combo between a classic character meal and a dinner show,

Jeff: dinner theater.

Dan: is honestly much better than

Heather: So much better. Yeah.

Jeff: I left there just pumped. I'm like I'm 52. And I just was like, yes.

Heather: was so

Jeff: It's awesome. And the food was great. It's all slightly Norway themed, great food.

Heather: You can have some meatballs,

Jeff: Oh,

Heather: a weird Norwegian

Jeff: OL's arm fell off while we were talking to him, but the woman didn't miss a beach. She screwed his arm back on, like while working his arm. He's he's, she's like working his gestures while screwing it back on and then hit some button and boomp. He starts working again. It was so good.

Heather: And there is a, one of the extra things you have to book on the ship is a thing with Ola it's Olaf's picnic. I think it's a lunch and that's, that's, that's an, a little extra, but everybody gets to see Ola. Everybody gets to see aunt man in the wasp, but dinner. It's really great.

Jeff: yeah. Came to every table and it was Ola, Kristoff Oken wandering Oken,

Oaken and. What's your face,

Heather: Elsa

Jeff: all make their way through the tables. Yeah,

Heather: that, that, that frozen lady

Jeff: the singing main character chick.

Heather: Woohoo, big summer blowout it wasn't and

Dan: isn't the food at the Marvel one. Is it like PIM labs at Disneyland where it's

Heather: I think maybe that's why I was a little disappointed.

Dan: I thought that they had, there was something that was supposed to be like quantum going on during it. Is that

Heather: And I,

Jeff: there is a quantum, there's an interactive thing. And there's the quantum grower and shrinker and you that it does come into play during it. I won't spoil it cuz it's interactive fun, but it does not have to do with your food.

Dan: That's

Heather: And I will say it, the food, it felt a little bit like that was still in pro a work in progress. There were a bunch of things on the menu that I tried to order that they didn't have yet. And that was

Dan: out already.

Heather: right. That was part of what was disappointing about that one. And I, that was just because the, this was the very first official sailing or not even official, the very first sailing and it, it wa they just weren't ready yet.

Jeff: There was just a lot of times we would walk by a store or a bar or a. Restaurant or a whatever. And there was, there was either film crews in there or meetings happening, or it would just be like closed. Sorry, I can't go in here. This isn't done yet. The, the sweet shop that's like their version of Penelope's suites did not open until this last few hours of the last day we were on there because they were still putting it together.

And then once they got it all together and stocked, then Disney had to bring their crew in there to film everything for the commercials.

Heather: The quick service stuff up on deck

Jeff: Ah,

Heather: huge improvement.

Jeff: And there's a lot of variety.

Heather: lot of variety.

 Yeah.

Jeff: have a taco place that's Chipotle on steroids out on the deck.

Heather: I had a giant taco bowl from

Jeff: Yeah, you can get tacos, burritos, bowls, something else.

Heather: then there's pizza.

Jeff: place that had amazing ribs. They had ribs and chicken and pulled pork and all the typical barbecue stuff, a bunch of different sides.

And then they have one, it was pizza and it's not pin Nokia's doghouse or whatever that.

Heather: was good pizza.

Jeff: whatever the pizza was on the other ones, this was real good pizza. And then the typical one of burgers and fries and hot dogs and chicken fingers and all that

Heather: Hmm.

Jeff: Yeah, really good. And then a nice bar, two different bars up on the deck.

There's just bars everywhere. They realized alcohol is a money maker.

Heather: And, and interestingly, yeah, interestingly, all of these serve your own stuff is gone from this ship. So the ice cream. Yeah. It's still there. It's still all, you can eat it open pretty much. Most of the day and night, but it's someone making your ice cream cone and handing it to you. And then in the buffet, it's still, it's more of a cafeteria instead of a buffet.

There's

Jeff: Also out on deck, you tell 'em, you can say, I want three chicken fingers and two scoops of fries or whatever, but they get it for you. There's a lot of labor being used on this ship. Like they have way more people, the buffets are not self-served. So they're getting everything for you.

Heather: And that's, I think that's that's one of the things that they had to retrofit the other ships for during COVID because the nobody wanted other people touching utensils and things at buffets anymore. And so it still is the, the flow was so much better at Marcine market than at cabanas.

I didn't ever see just real crowded congested areas.

Jeff: It is mere images of stuff. So you, it made more sense to kinda start at one end and work out, but because they're serving you anything that takes too long, they just give you a number and bring it over to your table. So you didn't have people standing around waiting for the omelet while people are trying to get by to get other stuff, you just tell 'em what you want.

And then they hand you a number and then they use the R R F I D chip to go find you and bring it to you. That's

Heather: yeah.

Dan: They're good at they're good at that. Logistics kind of stuff.

Heather: Yes,

Dan: that stuff out.

Jeff: A lot of weird, it's gonna be weird for people that are platinum cruisers. Like we are that have done 10, 15 cruises. It's weird. Not to ever know where you are on this ship.

Heather: there were so many times we had to go find a deck plan. Like where are we and where are we trying to go? And that wasn't just about the elevators,

Jeff: lot of things have just been made bigger hallways, wider, less, fewer pinch points going into the Walt Disney theaters. There's three floors of entryway instead of two. So it takes that crowd and divides it into three. The, the there's three different sets of Concession stands outside.

They put 'em off to the sides instead of right in the hallway. So you're not standing in the hall lining up to get popcorn. The movie theaters, there's two movie theaters that are half the size of the other, and the seats are big and comfortable now. But so if ant man's playing and you've already seen it, you can go watch something else across the hall.

Yeah. So they had two, they had light ear and. Dr. Strange going basically back and forth on this one

Heather: What's interesting is this ship is bigger. I can't remember if it's 20% bigger, 30% bigger. Some it's 30. Yeah, but it has the same number of state rooms as the dream in the fantasy. They put all of that extra space into the public areas, which is great. It felt

Jeff: So instead of the main deck with two pools, one more kid and one more, less kiddy, and then they're scattered. So there's six different family pools and three different adult

Heather: Mm-hmm I, yeah, it's something like that. I think they told us there were 10 pools and then just scattered hot tubs.

Jeff: Yeah. There's hot tub everywhere. Yeah. Yeah.

Dan: Isn't that that's like the, the new modern design language of cruise ships, isn't it? What was that huge ship a couple years ago that has like a central park area and uh, yeah. One of the Royal Caribbeans of the seas harmony symphony.

it's, and that makes sense, give all these areas

Jeff: There's a lot of dead space, like on the anybody that's Disney cruise before will recall. If you're up on the upper deck and after the stage in the main party area, there's just this big, long walkway of nothingness till you get to up front where. There were different things on different ships, but this one, along those walkways, leading towards the adult area, they had deck chairs, they had a bar and they had a two different hot tubs on either side.

So you just flip here's another hot tub. Why not? Just it's dead space. Throw a hot tub on there.

Dan: Give

Heather: if your kids like exactly, if your kids like those giant inflatable obstacle course, things they've even got those. We found those on accident,

Dan: nice.

Jeff: Yeah.

Heather: trying to find our

Jeff: to find the dang adult area.

Heather: I guess it's called the in credit course. And it's what was it called around here? Bounce party.

Dan: Mm-hmm

Jeff: these, yeah, pump it up is the chain around here, but it's half the time half during the day they have the sports thing. So it's like a big basketball slash soccer area. And then. Some days or some

Heather: Certain

Jeff: they, they bring in these giant inflatable courses,

Heather: and they were allowing adults to, to try them out. And I think adults are always allowed to try them out. They offered to let me try it out, but this

Jeff: apparently John Stamos and his kid were in there.

Heather: This was post slide experience. So I declined

Jeff: She was still bleeding.

Heather: yeah, no, thank you.

Jeff: But that was really cool. It was a super air conditioned room. It's a great family place to go and do bouncy stuff together. And then all along, both the bottom and the top areas like a balcony overlooking had ping pong tables and foosball and all sorts of

Heather: Some kind of table, table, top shuffle board,

Jeff: Uhhuh

Heather: which now that I'm saying shuffle board, I don't remember seeing I'm

Jeff: We were never on an

Heather: We did not go on the outside deck. The pool deck was an outer deck and the, and the

Jeff: But we never went out like decks 3, 4, 5, 6,

Heather: on the promenade, I

Jeff: they're out there. We

Heather: didn't go out there. I saw people running, but I

Jeff: We walked and walked and walked in like literally six miles a day of

Heather: I still feel like I didn't see it all. Yeah. The BTY Bobbi boutique is enormous and gorgeous and it's got a little girl's dream closet full of every type of

Jeff: I had never been in one of those establishments before. And I have to say, I wish I had some little girl I could throw all the money at that place is amazing.

Heather: We also didn't experience the Aqua mouse because they had it corded off for the media the whole time. And we didn't realize that we could have just pretended to be media. We know a few people who did that and got to write it. who

Jeff: they got a shirt, a media shirt.

Heather: Should have just pretended I'm with I wouldn't have had to pretend I'm with theme park.

Professor may, may I have a ride through and they set 'em up with a GoPro and sent him through, and it really looks like the Aqua duck, just the first, however long has all these screens. So it's

Jeff: Yeah, the screen is like Mickey and mini's runaway railway where there's oh, no, you're gonna get

Heather: something

Jeff: thrown down this flume thing. And then you bust out and it's sunlight and you drop and twirl and go up and down. And

Heather: Yeah. Looks really cool.

Jeff: you're on like a two seater, like proper seated thing. Like those, the crushing gush or whatever, they call that at typhoon lagoon.

It's like that.

Heather: crushing gusher. Yeah. Yeah. It has a back on it. Which Aqua duck. Didn't didn't really, it was just a raft. It didn't have a, yeah. Yeah.

Jeff: I've only done Aqua duck one time. And I thought this sucks and wasn't worth a long wait.

Heather: It's I don't know. The whole thing is just, is elevated. I, I really loved it. I,

Jeff: It has two other water slides in addition to the coaster, two more standard. And then as a whole big little kids play area, and there's also more kids pools, like just smaller. Pools everywhere you look

Heather: We got to see the fancy suite in the forward funnel, the tower suite

Jeff: ridiculous.

Heather: bedrooms, four and a half bathrooms, two stories.

Jeff: foot ceilings, like literally

Heather: It's got those fan fan fancy beds that the TV rises up out of the footboard.

Jeff: And everything's remote

Heather: how you know, you've made it

Jeff: goodnight and all the windows get covered for you. It's opulent

Heather: GEs

Jeff: the no,

Heather: bring out the TV click.

Dan: it doesn't sound relaxing to travel with enough people to need four bedrooms.

Heather: This is very true. This is very true.

Jeff: Unless it's four couples

Dan: Yeah, saying.

Jeff: even then who wants to be here in all that humanity?

Heather: This is true. Yeah. We could just, just have it with two people and you each get two bedrooms, one for all your

Jeff: yeah,

Heather: and one to sleep. Yes, that's right. Yeah. And full disclosure. One of the bedrooms is the library and it's a Murphy bed that comes outta the wall. Yeah.

Jeff: Oh, and one of 'em is two story. Was that the one with the bunks?

Heather: One of 'em is a bunk room.

Yes.

Jeff: Yeah. So there's two king bedrooms and then a bunk room and a, yeah, that Murphy bedroom. So in other words, it's a slum, I don't know. And the whole place is just opulent and awesome, but it's still just super family friendly and there's more stuff for adults to do, but not. To the exclusion of children.

It's a great,

Heather: take away from any of the kid stuff. And there's still two adults only restaurants. There's Apollo steakhouse instead of just Apollo. So you can get some Italian and a steak and so

Jeff: it so much. I swapped my family que from one cruise line to this ship while on the

Heather: wilds on the ship just.

Jeff: I was like, Nope, change in my mind. I will return. And Heather will return two

Heather: Just one, literally one week from today.

 Be back on the ship.

Dan: then you guys can both get a ticket to Skywalker ranch and you can go together

Heather: This is a good point.

Jeff: Bingo. Bingo.

Heather: very good point. Hmm. Jeff, are you okay with me purchasing a $5,000 beverage

Jeff: Yeah.

Heather: next week?

Jeff: Wyat and I'll be wrestling over who gets the ticket on the other. Cause I think that

Heather: Oh, I pretty it says an invitation. Is it for one person?

Dan: I got the impression it was one drink. One

Heather: Mm-hmm

Jeff: One drink, that's four shots and a bottle of this and four. Yeah. But only one of you.

Heather: but only one of you may have it all. I'll re I'll report back. Don't you

Jeff: cannot recommend this ship enough if you love cruising. And especially if you love Disney cruising, you

Heather: this is, this is the one to do.

Jeff: And the pricing seems comparable to the other ships.

Heather: Oh, yeah.

Jeff: They're not like gouging. Like they probably could.

Heather: Mm-hmm

Dan: yeah.

Heather: and they did at first on the inaugural, but then when they had to push it, everybody got 50% off. So it's, it's back down to normal pricing for the inaugural,

Dan: Good. The maiden voyage.

Heather: the maiden voyage. I'm sorry. Yes.

Dan: I'm gonna say, thanks for hanging out with us again this week. If you're excited to sail the seas on board, the Disney wish or explore anywhere else around the world. Key to the World Travel has a Disney Cruise Line funnel suite full of expert travel planners, ready to make your vacation dreams a reality. Head to www.keytotheworldtravel.com to get started with a no obligation quote.

Don't forget to catch up with our friend, the theme park professor for all the latest theme park news and tips at www.themeparkprofessor.com.

Word of mouth is the best way to help us grow our show. If you have a friend or two who you think would appreciate our special brand of globe trotting jackassery, Tell them what makes our show so great and send them our way. You can find links to subscribe to the show on your favorite apps and all the latest updates at www.goldkeyadventurers.com. We can't wait to hang out with you again next week. We'll see you real soon!

Jeff: Bye everybody.