Photos: Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Fantasy Receives Keel Laying Ceremony

Today, Disney Cruise Line celebrated the keel laying of the Disney Fantasy at the Meyer Werft shipyard. This is the second of two newly-designed ships that take the family cruise experience to all new heights. Sister ship to the Disney Fantasy, Disney Dream, entered service on Jan. 26, 2011.

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Disney Suspends Travels to Egypt and Tunis via Disney Cruise Line, Adventures by Disney

Due to political instability at their scheduled destinations, Disney Destinations has issued an alert notifying that itineraries involving Egypt and Tunis have been canceled and modified respectively.

For Egypt, this means that all of the new Adventures by Disney excursions have been canceled through August of 2011. Disney is in the process of reaching out to travel agents and customers who have booked the excursion to offer alternatives.

In the case of Tunis, which is a scheduled port of call on 10- and 11-night European Cruises aboard the Disney Magic, the scheduled stop is being replaced by Palermo, Italy. No additional timeframes have been offered.

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Disney Dream: Top (Not Quite) Ten Tips to Making the Most of Being Onboard

I was hoping to be able to offer a top ten list of some really great tips I learned through my own experiences on board the Disney Dream, but like when it came to paying my stateroom bill, I came up a bit short. So here’s hoping some of what I learned the hard way can help some of you.

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Report: Disney Dream Maiden Voyage a Nightmare for Many

(Okay, first of all, nightmare is a HUGE stretch here, but catchy titles sell)

Disney Cruise Line’s newest and largest ship, the Disney Dream, saw its official maiden voyage this past week and for all the improvements in both form and function on the ship — which is nearly 150% larger than the ‘classic’ ships — there were also plenty of disappointments to be found for many of its passengers who were essentially guinea pigs for the ship which just may not have been ready for prime-time.

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Report: Disney Dream Christens AquaDuck with Donald Duck

Donald Duck rides the AquaDuck during its christening onboard the Disney Dream

Just moments ago, the Disney Dream held a formal christening ceremony for its AquaDuck water coaster and we were there beside gal pal Daisy to help bring the event to you. Before he took his own maiden voyage on the AquaDuck, Donald Duck christened the first-of-its-kind attraction by adding in water collected from Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach waterparks located at Walt Disney World.

Then it was go for launch as Daisy cheered on her man — er, duck.

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First Look: Disney Dream Dooney & Bourke Inaugural Bags

Disney Dream Inaugural Dooney & Bourke

Although they won’t be going on sale until 6:30 pm this evening, these Disney Dream Inaugural patterned bags by Dooney & Bourke have already caused quite a stir upon the maiden voyage of the Disney Dream.

Although fashion accessories is not an area we admittedly excel at, it’s our understanding that the pricing for said line is surprisingly normal, running from $45 for the wristlet to $260 for the largest tote. Guests on board are limited to a purchase of two per style and while there seems to be some debate amongst passengers as to whether the design will be available onboard beyond the maiden voyage (apparently there is a distinction between the terms inaugural voyage and maiden voyage), we’ve been assured by the crew that these puppies are geared to sell out once and for all this trip around.

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Photo: Jennifer Hudson Christens the Disney Dream

Jennifer Hudson, Robert Iger and Thomas Staggs at Disney Dream christening (Gene Duncan/Disney)Oscar-winning actress and Grammy Award-winning singer Jennifer Hudson (left) poses Jan. 19, 2011 at Port Canaveral, Fla. with Walt Disney Company president and CEO Robert A. Iger (middle), Walt Disney Parks and Resorts chairman Thomas O. Staggs (right) and a ceremonial bottle of Champagne at the christening ceremony for the new “Disney Dream” cruise ship.

Hudson is the godmother for The Dream, the newest Disney Cruise Line ship which will have its maiden voyage on January 26.  Before performing on “American Idol” and winning an Academy Award for “Dreamgirls,” Hudson was a performer for one of the Disney Cruise Line ships.

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Photos: ‘Disney’s Believe’ and ‘Golden Mickeys’ Additions on Disney Dream

Dr. and Sophia Greenaway

A friend of Stitch Kingdom, who has had the blessed opportunity to sail upon the Disney Dream prior to its inaugural launch on January 26, has provided us with several photos from the ship’s entertainment offerings.

First up is cruiser favorite the ‘Golden Mickeys’ which has received enhancements that are exclusive to the new ship. A whole new segment featuring Ariel and her friends from The Little Mermaid in an under the sea aerial ballet adventure. Also added to the show is Disney’s newest princess, Rapunzel, from Disney’s Tangled, who joins beau Flynn Rider in a faithful re-creation of the romantic boat ride scene. Also promised to the lineup is a Beast who transforms from creature to prince right in front of the audience’s eyes in the Beauty and the Beast segment.

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Video: ‘Disney Dream’ Christening at Port Canaveral

Disney Dream ChristeningWith a dash of Disney magic and a surprising twist, a helicopter hoisted a 16-foot “champagne bottle” across the bow of the Disney Dream during a christening ceremony yesterday morning officially welcoming the newest ship to the Disney Cruise Line family.

Serving the traditional role of godmother for the Disney Dream christening was Jennifer Hudson, the Academy Award and Grammy Award winner whose own dreams of stardom began when she was a performer on the Disney Wonder ship in 2003. Hudson was joined onstage by Disney CEO Bob Iger and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs, as the enormous “champagne bottle” filled with dreams of adventure, romance and fun was lifted into the air and broken across the bow of the 130,000-ton ship.

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Disney Dream Official Maritime Plaque Exchange Commemorating Inaugural Call Takes Place at Port Canaveral

Captain Tom Forberg, Karl Holz, Gov. Rick Scott, J. Stanley Payne aboard the Disney DreamThe traditional plaque and key exchange for Disney’s newest ship, the Disney Dream, took place today commemorating the ship’s inaugural call on the port with an official maritime ceremony onboard.  Several elected and local officials participated in the event including Gov. Rick Scott and Port Canaveral Chief Executive Officer J. Stanley “Stan” Payne, along with Captain Tom Forberg of the Disney Dream and Disney Cruise Line President Karl Holz.

The launch of the Disney Dream is expected to bring sizable economic benefits to Port Canaveral and the region including nearly 450 jobs and thousands of additional cruise guests. The 130,000-ton ship will call Port Canaveral home and sail three-, four- and five-night Bahamian itineraries beginning with the ship’s maiden voyage on Jan. 26.

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