Pageantry filled the shoreline, water and sky as the Disney Magic cruise ship sailed for the first time from the Port of Los Angeles, led by the world’s most powerful fireboat.
Just in time to join in the “Happiest Homecoming on Earth” Disneyland’s 50th anniversary celebration, the highly distinctive 2,700-passenger ship’s departure on Saturday was the first of 12 consecutive seven-night cruise vacations from the Port of Los Angeles to Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas.
Thousands of onlookers – including Disneyland Resort cast members – watched from the shoreline as a flotilla comprised of coast guard cutters, police cruisers, fireboats, tall ships and scores of personal watercraft escorted the Disney Magic down the channel. In the sky, colorful kites swirled around the ship and upon reaching the breakwater, special daytime fireworks were launched, ushering the ship out to sea. This marks the first time a Disney Cruise Line ship has set sail on cruise vacations from a port outside the state of Florida.
“We are thrilled to be here at the Port of Los Angeles for the summer to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Disneyland,” said Tom McAlpin, president of Disney Cruise Line. “It was incredible to see so many residents and Disneyland cast members waving to the ship as it made its first departure from the Port of Los Angeles. The support we have received from the local community has been tremendous.”
The leading family cruise line is offering guests the opportunity to combine the fun and excitement of the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim with the enchantment of a Disney Cruise Line voyage by booking two-night pre- or post- cruise stays in one of the three world-class hotels of the Disneyland Resort.
“The 50th anniversary of Disneyland marks the first time that all Disney theme parks around the world have joined together in a truly global celebration,” said Disneyland Resort president Matt Ouimet. “We’re thrilled to have Disney Cruise Line be a part of the magic that began here 50 years ago.”
Disney Cruise Line is also premiering a brand new theatrical show aboard the Disney Magic during its repositioning cruise to California. “Twice Charmed: An Original Twist on the Cinderella Story” immerses audiences in a new rendition of the fairytale classic and features a rich musical score with six original compositions and two classic Disney songs. With an accomplished cast, lavish costumes, elaborate set designs and clever special effects, the story brings some of the most beloved Disney characters to life in a stage show sure to please the entire family.
The ship is scheduled to return to Florida Sept. 3, 2005. Sister-ship Disney Wonder will continue sailing three- and four-night cruises to the Bahamas out of Port Canaveral, Fla., and offering land/sea packages with the Walt Disney World Resort.
Disney Cruise Line specifically designed its ships with areas and activities that appeal to the unique vacation needs of every member of the family. As a result, its vacations offer guests an unbelievable cruise experience not found anywhere else.
Stretching nearly an entire deck of the ship, children’s programming spaces feature supervised activities for five age-specific groups of children and teens. Additionally, infants and toddlers are cared for at Flounder’s Reef Nursery, allowing parents the opportunity to explore adult areas on their own.
The Walt Disney Theatre provides a magnificent 977-seat showplace of state-of-the-art sound, lighting, staging and set design. The curtain is lifted after the sun drops and original Disney musicals, family-friendly variety acts and first-run films entertain all ages. Adults have more late- night entertainment to choose from than ever before along Beat Street, a nighttime entertainment district – featuring a high-energy dance club, stylish jazz piano bar and traditional sports pub – reserved exclusively for them.
Novel in its approach and inventive in its execution, the dining experience rotates guests through three different themed restaurants throughout the cruise. Accompanied by their familiar wait staff and tablemates, guests travel from the casual elegance of Lumiere’s to the colorful, island-inspired Parrot Cay and Animator’s Palate, where Disney animation springs to life throughout their meal. Adults may also opt to dine at Palo, an exquisite restaurant featuring sweeping views and northern Italian cuisine. Unique new dining experiences created specifically for sea days aboard Disney’s seven-night cruise vacations include champagne brunch and afternoon high tea for adults, a Disney character breakfast and tea with Wendy for families, plus a casual evening dining alternative at Topsider Buffet.
The 877 family-friendly staterooms aboard each Disney ship were designed to offer maximum comfort. Most feature an industry first – a bath-and-a-half with two separate areas; one offering a shower and sink, the other a sink and toilet.