Disney Cruise Line’s newest ship, the Disney Fantasy, will see another milestone tomorrow as she leaves the Meyer Werft enclosed dock for the first time, proving her seaworthiness. At approximately 5 am EST on Sunday, January 8, she will slowly be floated out of the building, into the harbor for a few tests.
Final touches on the ship’s construction, such as the installation of the mast, will be performed while she is berthed at the yard’s pier. Two weeks later, she is expected to be conveyed to the North Sea via the River Ems. She will then officially be delivered to Disney Cruise Line on February 9 in Bremerhaven.
From there, it’s a Transatlantic voyage in which her first stop is Pier 88 at the Manhattan Cruise Terminal in New York City (12th Ave. & 55th St.), where she is scheduled to be berthed from February 28 through March 2, causing some to speculate that this is where the christening for the ship will take place. Although possible, it will put the christening slightly ahead of schedule relative to her first sail date as her slightly older sister, the Disney Dream, was. Christening or not, it’s likely that the decision to bring her to New York City first is a calculated move by both the city and the cruise line to bring worldwide attention to her and the fact that older sis Disney Magic will be sailing out of New York a few months later. It will make for much better television as well as ABC’s ‘Good Morning America,’ ‘Live! with Kelly,’ ‘The View,’ ‘The Chew,’ and ‘The Revolution’ all originate from the city, as do other Disney-friendly potential venues including ‘The Rachel Ray Show.’
What we have been able to confirm is that the ship will be open for private tours for industry professionals (i.e., travel agents) and, we assume, media outlets. In fact, one could easy speculate that while Disney Parks celebrates its ‘One More Disney Day’ campaign at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and Disneyland, those who can’t make the trip can expect to see the Disney Fantasy celebrating on ‘Good Morning America,’ although this is pure speculation.
The float out ceremony of the Disney Fantasy is expected to be streamed live on the Meyer Werft website. Photo courtesy Meyer Werft.
UPDATE: The Meyer Werft webcam can be found here. The Disney Fantasy is expected to leave the dock building at approximately 6 am ET (noon local time).
UPDATE #2: Better live stream at http://www.ndr.de/regional/niedersachsen/oldenburg/disneyfantasy105.html
UPDATE #3: With the ceremony complete, we have produced a recap video from the hour long+ webcast which is below. The Meyer Werft webcam remains active and is focused on the ship so you can continue to see her being worked on outside here.