May 19th Disney Fantasy: Expectations Exceeded: Disney Fantasy Cruise Review by reimero

Disney Fantasy 5
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May 19th Disney Fantasy: Expectations Exceeded

Sail Date: May 2012
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Port Canaveral (Orlando)
My wife and I had been wanting to take a cruise for some time, but only recently decided to take the plunge. We are both fans of Disney, and have had great experiences with (and expectations of) their resort experiences, so we had high hopes - and high expectations - for DCL. The opportunity to sail on the brand new Disney Fantasy was just too good to pass up.

We didn't have much idea what we were getting into as a couple traveling without children, and some of the reviews of the Dream gave me pause, particularly regarding adults-only areas. From the moment we boarded the Fantasy, it became clear that DCL had heard the feedback regarding the Dream, both positive and negative, and used that to improve the Fantasy. The adult pool areas were quiet and didn't feel crowded, and the "Europa" club district was lively and entertaining. We loved it.

Much has been made in other reviews of the food, the cost, the activities, the embarkation process, etc, so I won't rehash More what's already been said repeatedly. For us, we came aboard expecting an environment and level of service worthy of the Disney brand (my wife's brother had been a cast member at Disney, so we were well-versed in what's expected.) DCL somehow managed to exceed our high expectations. The attention given to detail on the Fantasy is remarkable, even by Disney standards. The ship is elegant, yet family-friendly and unmistakably "Disney." The crew were patient, friendly and attentive (in fact, in what sounds like is an aberration, our servers were still friendly and smiling on debarkation day, and we did NOT feel rushed!) All in all, we were blown away both by the ship and by the crew.

For us, the biggest letdown/waste of time/whatever was the ubiquitous jewelry shopping seminar. I know it's a source of revenue for the cruise line, I know it's part of the whole deal, but those seminars really are just a waste of time that could be spent otherwise (un)occupied.

All in all, though, we were absolutely enthralled with our cruise, and would strongly recommend DCL at least to anyone who is a fan of Disney. Less

Published 06/08/12

Cabin review: 8A5022

Fantastic, fantastic cabin, at least for a couple. We were expecting to be somewhat cramped, and we found ourselves with far more space than anticipated. A third person would fit comfortably, but things might start getting tight with a fourth (2 children might be OK.) There was plenty of room to store stuff, including under the queen-size bed. Our stateroom did not have the split bathroom common to most Disney staterooms, but we didn't really miss it. Families with children might. On the other hand, we had 2 large portholes we could sit in, so we had plenty of light and a fantastic view. Our cabin was forward. We experienced a little bit of motion, but nothing seasickness-inducing, and we quickly got used to it. We would definitely book this stateroom again.

Port and Shore Excursions

It was quiet, serene and convenient. We chose Castaway Cay as our primary "beach day", and it didn't disappoint in the least. There were some character encounters which were a lot of fun (including Captain Jack Sparrow!) The included lunch was pretty good (but certainly not what I'd consider gourmet). Beaches were pristine and there were plenty of loungers and umbrellas about. The adults-only beach seemed like our own personal paradise. It was flat-out awesome. (There were other adults there, but it did not feel "busy" in the least.) One would have expected that Disney's private island would feel like a theme park; it did not. In fact, there was far less shopping than I would have expected, based on my experiences in the parks. The island genuinely felt like a serene getaway where you could just enjoy yourself, even free of the pressures of getting around and of high-pressure sales tactics. Just what the doctor ordered!!

We went to the Tijon Parfumerie for a perfume-making class in Grand Case on our own. It was a bit pricey, but very informative and a whole lot of fun. Strongly recommended!! (Warning: we had to take a taxi, and it cost us about $50-60 round trip). Shopping in Phillipsburg was a major, major disappointment for us. It was overwhelming, and the quality of the goods just didn't look that good. It didn't scream so much "shopping Mecca" as "tourist trap."

We did the self-guided walking tour through Charlotte Amalie, which was a lot of fun. We both loved the old buildings! Shopping was once again a bit of a letdown but didn't seem quite as much of a scam as St. Martin. We didn't spend as much time shopping in St. Thomas, either. The walking tour was great fun, though.
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