APRIL 26, 2013 — Hard to believe, but the first Disney Cruise Line ship, Disney Magic, is now around 15 years old (her maiden voyage was in July 1998) and Disney has decided it is time for a "reimagineering" transformation that will take place during drydocking Sept. 7-0ct. 10, 2013 in the Navantia shipyard Cadiz, Spain.
The ship will emerge 20 ft longer (at 984 ft) and with her grt increased by 1,000 tons to 84,000 grt.
Disney Cruises has not yet said what will add the extra length and weight, but, in a view of the ship released today, it looks like she is being given a "ducktail" aft, presumably to reduce drag and improve fuel economy.
Close up of stern following makeover
Be that as it may, when Disney Magic emerges from Navantia she will be packed with innovative and updated features, from a new grand atrium lobby and a children's area of "super hero" proportions to a three-story water thrill slide.
"Storytelling is at the heart of everything we do," says Joe Lanzisero, senior creative vice president for Walt Disney Imagineering. "Walt Disney was a master storyteller and knew how to engage people's emotions into stories. Our job is to take what we learned from Walt and apply it to the experiences on board our ships."
When guests board the Disney Magic, they will enter a grand atrium lobby that has been redesigned to be "elegant art deco, inspired by elements of the sea," according to Lanzisero.
AquaDunk is a three story water thrill ride that extends out beyond the side of the ship
"Filmmaking is the history of our company and in film the 'establishing shot' sets the scene," he says. "This is the same with the atrium, as we begin telling our story."
The spacious and spectacular three-deck lobby has an art deco atrium chandelier, opulent furnishings, a grand piano and giant portholes that recall the days of early 20th century ocean liners. Its centerpiece is a cold-cast bronze statue of "Helmsman Mickey." The statue, which has stood in the atrium since the ship was launched, will receive a special makeover bringing new luster to its golden hue.
Outside the Grand Lobby, there will be plenty of options for guests that could have been found in no early liner, including that three story thrill ride, AquaDunk.
Disney Magic Enhancements at a Glance
Splashtacular Fun on the Upper Decks:
- AquaDunk new thrill slide. Deck 13
- AquaLab new interactive water playground and pool. Deck 9
- Nephews' Splash Zone new for infants and toddlers. Deck 9
Kids and Teens:
- Disney's Oceaneer Club (completely reimagined, ages 3 to 12). Deck 5
- Marvel's Avengers Academy Andy's Room Pixie Hollow Mickey Mouse Club Disney'S Oceaneer Lab (re-themed, ages 3 to 12). Deck 5
- It's a Small World Nursery (replacing Flounder's Reef, 3 months to 3 years). Deck 5
- Chill Spa for teens (new at Senses Spa & Salon, ages 13 to 17). Deck 9
Exclusively for Adults:
- After Hours nighttime entertainment district (replacing Beat Street). Deck 3
- Fathoms nightclub (replacing Rockin' Bar D). Deck 3
- Keys piano lounge (replacing Sessions). Deck 3
- O'Gills Irish pub and sports bar (replacing Diversions). Deck 3
- Senses Spa & Salon (replacing Vista Spa & Salon). Deck 9 Palo specialty restaurant (dining room makeover). Deck 10
Disney Family Dining:
- Carioca's (replacing Parrot Cay). Deck 3
- Animator's Palate ("Drawn to Magic" and "Animation Magic" shows). Deck 4
- Cabanas (replacing Topsider Buffet). Deck 9
- Family Fun:
- Atrium Lobby (reimagined). Deck 3
- D Lounge family lounge (replacing Studio Sea). Deck 4
- Staterooms and suites (redesign). Decks 1,2,5,6,7,8