Travel Planning

castaway cay christmas with Mickey!

Disney Cruise Line Christmas Decor and Characters Showcased

castaway cay christmas with Mickey!

I’ve never been aboard a Disney cruise ship at Christmas, but I hear it’s a special time. Beyond the decorations and specially costumed walk-around characters, there are special meals and holiday entertainment to enjoy. Here’s a fresh video with highlights from across the Disney Cruise Line fleet revealing how the Christmas holiday is celebrated. There are also a few wonderful shots of decorations at Castaway Cay and the Cape Canaveral terminal too.

As it’s the first Christmas Season for the Disney Fantasy, it’s the very first time decorations have been erected on the ship. Disney recently shared a video showing the installation of the big 20ft tall atrium lobby tree in Time-Lapse video. Which you can see below the jump:

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Disney Wonder

Disney Cruise Line to Visit Jamaica for First Time

Disney Cruise Line has announced new itineraries that include stops in Jamaica for the first time in late 2013. The new seven-night Western Caribbean sailings will embark on the Disney Wonder and call on Falmouth, Jamaica, as well as Grand Cayman and Cozumel, Mexico and… Read More »Disney Cruise Line to Visit Jamaica for First Time

Disney Parks Launches New TV Commercials

Disney Memories - Magic Kingdom at Twilight

A new series of commercials from Disney Parks has hit the airwaves. They position a Disney Parks vacation as a sort of memory factory from which there is a limited time to extract those precious moments. I say it a bit cynically, but that really is the formula that Disney and its research partners have found to work the best.

With a world where economic uncertainty is the one thing that’s for certain, surveys and guests have told Disney that guests are looking to make the one thing that can’t be taken away from them, special family bonds built by time spent together.

As it turns out, Disney is uniquely suited to provide this experience. The Disneyland Resort has received a kickstart with the revitalized California Adventure gate making it a true multi-day destination and the Walt Disney World resort has perfected the art of enveloping you in the magic to such a point that you never have to experience anything non-Disney form the moment you arrive at the airport until your departure. Not quite as good as teleporting your from your kitchen to the Magic Kingdom, but it will have to do until the Imagineers perfect that option.

Follow us below the jump to see the rest of the new commercials, then please let us know which commercial works the best for you and rate the whole campaign from “5 – Great Idea” to “1 – Needs Improvement” in the comments.

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New Fantasyland Minisite Hides Mystery

Walt Disney World is attempting to drive up a little virtual excitement for New Fantasyland via a new micro-site. The site claims there is a curse preventing all the information about the new land from being revealed and a hero is needed to remove the… Read More »New Fantasyland Minisite Hides Mystery

A Kid’s View of Disney World: Dumbo The Flying Elephant

I’m happy to be sharing another travel planning related video with my son as host. This time he shares a kid’s view on Dumbo The Flying Elephant in Storybook Circus. The attraction has finally opened all of its elements (two spinners, an interactive play lounge,… Read More »A Kid’s View of Disney World: Dumbo The Flying Elephant

Universal Orlando Resort to Build New Hotel

Apparently Universal Orlando Resort has figured out a large untapped audience – Families of Hipsters. They just announced a partnership with Loews Hotels & Resorts to build a new hotel development with a ‘hip’ theme that will add high-quality, high-value options for families wanting an affordable on-site experience. I joke, but I am willing to bet it will be a success for Universal.

Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort will offer two distinct experiences within the development’s multiple buildings: 900 family suites, capable of sleeping six, that include kitchen areas and 900 standard guest rooms – offering both moderate – and value-priced accommodations. It will be operated by Loews Hotels & Resorts and is scheduled to open in 2014.

Think of Cabana Bay Beach Resort like a moderate resort, compared to the more deluxe Portofino Bay Hotel, the Hard Rock Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort. Amenities will be slightly different, and the room rate won’t include the Universal Express Unlimited Pass. That’s fine in my book, since a potential of 5000 more people running around with Express Passes could overwhelm the delicate balance that exists now in the parks.

That said, there is an obvious need for family suites. More extended families are vacationing together. A moderate level price is also something that has been missing from Universal’s deck of cards.

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