Thousands of colorful fireworks filled the nighttime sky over Barcelona this evening as, for the first time, the Disney Magic cruise ship approached the Spanish port city nestled along the Mediterranean coast, signaling Disney Cruise Line’s first-ever foray into the European cruise market.
In grand Spanish style, the 2,700-passenger ship was greeted by a fireworks spectacular totaling nearly 2,200-shells upon arrival to the Port of Barcelona. The Port of Barcelona will serve as homeport for the Disney Magic this summer as it embarks on brand new 10- and 11-night itineraries in the Mediterranean. These cruises provide families with a unique and hassle-free way to explore world-famous cities such as Rome, Florence, Naples, Cannes and Barcelona.
“This is a special way to launch our unique Mediterranean cruises,” said Disney Cruise Line President Tom McAlpin. “Our guests have told us they want to explore different parts of the world with Disney Cruise Line, and we’re delighted to provide them with an authentic European experience combined with a fun, family-friendly cruise only Disney can deliver.”
Continuing to offer a diverse array of itineraries, for the summer of 2008, Disney Cruise Line will reposition the Disney Magic to the West Coast for seven-night cruise vacations to the Mexican Riviera. Beginning May 25, 2008, the Disney Magic will sail 12-consecutive cruises from the Port of Los Angeles to Cabo San Lucas, Mazatla¡n and Puerto Vallarta.
The celebratory fireworks show in Barcelona was choreographed to music that played upon Disney’s rich musical history and celebrated the European destinations the Disney Magic will visit this summer. Thousands of local residents gathered along the Barcelona shoreline to catch a glimpse of the Disney Magic and join the festivities. A chorus of cheers filled the ship’s decks when the show paid tribute to the newly released film, “Pirates of the Caribbean, At World’s End.” The film made its debut on the Disney Magic later that evening.
Disney Cruise Line guests sailing in the Mediterranean will find several new surprises including a brand new stage spectacular at the Walt Disney Theatre, a Mediterranean-themed deck party, European-themed activities for children and family-friendly shore excursions at ports of call. To prepare for the journey, for the first time ever, iPod users can find Mediterranean themed content port information, travel tips and language guides plus movies and TV shows in a special travel entertainment store created exclusively by iTunes for Disney Cruise Line.
“It was important to add new surprises for our guests during our first-ever European adventure,” says Jim Urry, Vice President of Entertainment and Shore Excursions. “We looked for creative ways to showcase the international flavor of our destinations through onboard and excursion activities allowing the entire family to become immersed in the Mediterranean experience.”
Lavish entertainment is a Disney Cruise Line hallmark, and two notable additions were developed specifically for the Mediterranean sailings. Mickey Mouse’s dreams come to life in When Mickey Dreams, a musical spectacle guided by a cast of Cirque-like “dream seekers” at the Walt Disney Theatre. The show’s unique, artistic nature will thrill guests, while a nightmare visit by the notorious villain Maleficent serves up a few chills.
One night during the cruise, guests will celebrate the summer in the Mediterranean at a carnival-inspired deck party called Party Paradiso. With the help of special effects designed to light up the night, Disney characters and performers ignite the spirit of fun and adventure as guests prepare to explore new horizons.
Youth counselors, who are expertly skilled at keeping children of any age engaged and entertained, will weave the cultures of the ship’s destinations into many of the children’s activities. Up to 70 new activities for kids 3-17 have been planned for the Mediterranean, including Crêpe-making, puppet-crafting, pizza-baking and mosaic tile-making.
Disney Cruise Line established the family market within the cruise industry when the business launched in 1998. The first two ships were purpose built for families to reconnect and recharge while creating vacation memories that will last a lifetime. From a theater featuring live musical spectaculars to a luxurious spa for adults and nearly an entire deck dedicated to children’s activities, the ships truly offer something for everyone.
Limited availability remains for select Mediterranean cruises. Guests can book Disney Cruise Line’s next adventure, a special summer season on the West Coast in 2008 with seven-night cruises to the Mexican Riviera, or a magical 3-, 4- or 7-night cruise vacation to the Bahamas and Caribbean from Port Canaveral, Fla., by calling 888/DCL-2500, visiting disneycruise.com or contacting their travel agent.