Most notably, there was no way to watch the final round of The Masters golf tournament onboard the ship. I know, right now you're thinking "if this guy loves golf so much, what's he doing at sea?". The fact of the matter is, when I and some of my travelling companions realized that our long-in-the-planning cruise of a lifetime would coincide with arguably the most important golf tournament in the world, we took solace in knowing that we could at least watch it in our stateroom or the ship's sportsbar, 687. Sadly, this turned out not to be the case. Evidently Disney takes its TV and entertainment properties so seriously that they wouldn't dare feature a competing network (in this case CBS) among its onboard satellite TV channels, not even for a few hours. On a ship dedicated to so much luxury and pampering of guests, surely this is a decision a little on the cheap side.
Secondly, the cruise terminal was way too crowded and too hot. What good is selecting a boarding time of 12 noon, thus working hard to get there by 11:30, when ultimately we have to sit around with a thousand others until 2 p.m.?
Thirdly, I would have enjoyed an opportunity to see the engine room, the bridge, the crew quarters, etc. Apart from a kitchen tour (which was awesome), these options didn't seem to be available.
Finally, I felt the early and frequent barrage of cocktail-peddlars off-putting and worthy of lesser ships. If I'm thirsty, I'll find a drink-- I don't need to have a tray of fancy drinks in plastic glasses waved in my face everywhere I walk. I did notice however that this started to diminish each day.
On a positive note, the crew was extremely friendly, the decor was mesmerizing (every square inch seems to have had the attention of design professionals), the stateroom was cool, comfortable and clean, and the ship was rock solid; At no point could you tell we were moving, unless you looked at the waves below.
The on-stage entertainment (Golden Mickeys and Believe) was very high-calibre stuff indeed; it wouldn't have looked out of place in a large metro area.
In summary, congratulations to Disney & Meyer Werft for creating such a beautiful vessel. We might be back-- but just not during a favoured televised sports championship that isn't carried by ABC or ESPN!
It was so hot that we didn't feel like exploring the city too much after the glass-bottom-boat tour, so it was back to the Dream right away. We did buy a starfish and a sand-dollar from a dockside vendor ($10 each, ouch), and he was friendly enough.
Castaway Cay (the following day) was even more fun (but more crowded of course) than we expected. Loved the fresh-water showers outside of all of the bathroom buildings! The bikes could use some maintenance-- how 'bout a little oil on the chains?