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1st Disney Cruise! Heck, my 1st cruise EVER!

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
Forgot about the mixology class. 5 drinks per person for $20 is a good deal. And it's fun. Also recommend the tequila tasting class. But eat first before attending any classes.
 

ChuckElias

Well-Known Member
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The buffets offer standard selections, but I found the quality to be high. For both of my cruises I hit the lunch buffet first thing and enjoyed a meal on the outside deck
Buffet lunch is offered every day in Cabanas, where you can choose to dine outdoors. On Embarkation Day, there is also a buffet offered at one of the rotational restaurants. Obviously, that's served indoors only.

Palo does both buffet style and menu ordering.
Just for clarification, the buffet portion is only available during brunch. During Palo dinners, there's no buffet.

Returning guests probably know all of that, but since this is the OP's first cruise, I thought it might be helpful to be a little more specific.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
I have dug into my archives to provide the following observations and advice when it comes to Disney cruises.

The buffets offer standard selections, but I found the quality to be high. For both of my cruises I hit the lunch buffet first thing and enjoyed a meal on the outside deck:

View attachment 343132

The upcharge restaurants are worth every penny. Palo does both buffet style and menu ordering. The buffet including specific items you could have made to order.

View attachment 343133

View attachment 343134

Remi, which cost $75 at the time was crazy good. I was told it was the type of meal you'd pay hundreds for in the real world. It was a lot of courses, of very small portions. Here's a photo of the quail as an example:

View attachment 343135
We've done Remy twice and Palo on the other 4 cruises. I would gladly give up one of the rotation restaurants for either.

Yes, Remy is small bites. Like 10 courses worth. But we are always stuffed when we leave...happily, ecstatically stuffed.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
Buffet lunch is offered every day in Cabanas, where you can choose to dine outdoors. On Embarkation Day, there is also a buffet offered at one of the rotational restaurants. Obviously, that's served indoors only.

Just for clarification, the buffet portion is only available during brunch. During Palo dinners, there's no buffet.

Returning guests probably know all of that, but since this is the OP's first cruise, I thought it might be helpful to be a little more specific.
I like that DCL has opened up one of the 3 rotation restaurants for lunch during departure day. Much less hectic than Cabanas.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
Another thing. Free Mickey bars....delivered by Room Service. Unfortunately, the in room fridges don't have a little freezer compartment to store large quantities of them, :( so they have to be eaten right away. Not necessarily a problem. 😉
 

Master Yoda

Pro Star Wars geek.
Premium Member
Another thing. Free Mickey bars....delivered by Room Service. Unfortunately, the in room fridges don't have a little freezer compartment to store large quantities of them, :( so they have to be eaten right away. Not necessarily a problem. 😉
Out of all of the things my kids got to do on the cruises, I think room service was their favorite.
 

Phonedave

Well-Known Member
More answers bring up more questions!

1. The buffets: would you consider them QS quality, Tusker House quality, or ?
It's a buffet. in my opinion a buffet has certain limitations that it cannot overcome. You are not going to get well plated food, the food is going to st out for at least some time, it's not a nice as being waited on, etc. But, having said that, the buffets are just about as good as a buffet can get.

2. Can you at least put in a (no guarantee) request for early vs. late dinner - or does it even matter because if you need a snack at 6pm, there’s always something somewhere?
You can request, but you may not get it. If you don't get the time you want, you can try to switch again when you board (they will tell you where to go to make the change). Do not worry about shows and dining. There are two shows a night, and they are scheduled so you either eat then see the show, or see the show then eat. And yes, food is available 24/7 (room service is free except for sodas - the ones on deck are free, the room service ones are not)

3. Re: Palo/Remy: is this basically paying for the meal completely out of pocket, or more of an upcharge? And is it signature-level dining?
It is supposed to be an upcharge, because the theory is you will be missing your normal rotational dining (I guess you could eat dinner twice if you really wanted to). at it's current $125 price I don't consider Palo worth it. If that was just the price, then yes. But if you consider it as an upcharge then no.

4. Where’s the gym? 😉
By the spa. There is also a running track. Don't think you will do any swimming on the ship for exercise, small crowded pools
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
I am way too much of a lightweight to do tastings. I would have a stranger in a headlock telling them how much I love them after 3-4 shots.;)
I made an extremely potent margarita during one of our classes. Very potent. And had enough liquid left in the shaker to pour a healthy sixth glass. But the bartender wouldn't give me another glass, just told me to pour it in the 5 drinks I'd already filled (which were filled to the brim), so I drank it from the shaker. As we walked back to our stateroom, I kept saying, "It's not me, it's the ship!" I was a tad tipsy....
 

Phonedave

Well-Known Member
I am way too much of a lightweight to do tastings. I would have a stranger in a headlock telling them how much I love them after 3-4 shots.;)

Not a DCL cruise, but a Celebrity cruise. We did a bacon and bourbon tasting one night. Different bourbons paired with different bacons. There was one family, a wife, husband, and kid, where the wife was finishing everything that the other family members did not. She was telling the whole table how much she loved everybody.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
Out of all of the things my kids got to do on the cruises, I think room service was their favorite.
The ability to pick up a phone and have food arrive in 30 minutes is sheer heaven.

Oh, OP, speaking of room service. DCL provides tags you hang on your door the night before (think you have to do it by 2AM) to have breakfast delivered. You select the time and options - coffee, tea, juice, milk, cold cereals, fruit, pastries. Hot stuff like waffles, bacon, eggs, you need to go to Cabanas for. We make a stop at Cabanas on the way to the room after a gym visit for those items.
 

Phonedave

Well-Known Member
Another thing. Free Mickey bars....delivered by Room Service. Unfortunately, the in room fridges don't have a little freezer compartment to store large quantities of them, :( so they have to be eaten right away. Not necessarily a problem. 😉

My kids loved room service when they were little. My one daughter also has a thing for BBQ potato chips. I opened a cabinet in the state room and about 15 bags came falling out. Apparently she had been getting them from the poolside food stand and was hoarding them in the room in case they ran out.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
Not a DCL cruise, but a Celebrity cruise. We did a bacon and bourbon tasting one night. Different bourbons paired with different bacons. There was one family, a wife, husband, and kid, where the wife was finishing everything that the other family members did not. She was telling the whole table how much she loved everybody.
Pairing bourbon with bacon...who knew.

We did the tequila tasting. One guest didn't show up. One of the tequilas was Patron's coffee/chocolate infused version. Needless to say, that extra glass was MINE.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
My kids loved room service when they were little. My one daughter also has a thing for BBQ potato chips. I opened a cabinet in the state room and about 15 bags came falling out. Apparently she had been getting them from the poolside food stand and was hoarding them in the room in case they ran out.
The stuff that ends up in our fridge. We try to do Concierge, which includes alcohol in the lounge. Normally, I'd get the beer package once on board. But we each would leave with an unopened Corona that would magically end up in the fridge...that was our stock to take on Castaway Cay.
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
It's a buffet. in my opinion a buffet has certain limitations that it cannot overcome. You are not going to get well plated food, the food is going to st out for at least some time, it's not a nice as being waited on, etc. But, having said that, the buffets are just about as good as a buffet can get.



You can request, but you may not get it. If you don't get the time you want, you can try to switch again when you board (they will tell you where to go to make the change). Do not worry about shows and dining. There are two shows a night, and they are scheduled so you either eat then see the show, or see the show then eat. And yes, food is available 24/7 (room service is free except for sodas - the ones on deck are free, the room service ones are not)



It is supposed to be an upcharge, because the theory is you will be missing your normal rotational dining (I guess you could eat dinner twice if you really wanted to). at it's current $125 price I don't consider Palo worth it. If that was just the price, then yes. But if you consider it as an upcharge then no.

By the spa. There is also a running track. Don't think you will do any swimming on the ship for exercise, small crowded pools
I think the $125 is now the Remy, not Palo upcharge. I believe Palo is now $70?
 

LAKid53

Official Member of the Mean Girls Cult
Premium Member
In other words, Disney cruises are a blast. So much to do on the ship, fantastic food, adult spots, kids clubs (my SIL is tempted to tell the staff he's a tall 10 year old to play in the Star Wars one), Castaway Cay. And I'm on my next cruise in 5 months!!! Yipee
 
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