You may remember the precious Hall family who were the winners of our Unfrozen Winter contest earlier this year. Check out their adorable snowman submission!
Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning sent the Halls on a Disney Cruise and provided airfare for four. Bradley and Rebecca took their two oldest children, Korbin and Brooke, on their Disney Cruise during mid-summer. This was the first cruise for Korbin and Brooke and the first in about 10 years for Rebecca and Bradley.
“I can’t begin to describe all the fun we had and how truly unbelievable the whole thing was,” wrote Rebecca. “It was a trip we could have never taken on our own. Disney does cruising right!”
The Hall family was sweet enough to show us their itinerary and some pictures from their incredible trip. If you’re interested in taking a Disney Cruise, or just curious what it’s all about, read on to see the highlights from the Hall’s vacation.
We were on the ship for two days (Saturday and Sunday) and then ported in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We booked a Catamaran and went out with a few other families all day. It was my son and daughter’s first time snorkeling and they loved it. We saw turtles and stingrays – it may have been the coolest experience of the whole trip!
We went from Tortola to St. Thomas in the American Virgin Islands, where we were able to snorkel some more, went swimming, and laid out on the beach. The water was really that turquoise blue that you see in movies – truly beautiful.
We traveled all day Wednesday and then docked at Castaway Cay, Disney’s Exclusive Island. The water was incredibly blue and had perfect visibility below, so of course that meant more snorkeling! They placed a bunch of Mickey Mouses you could look for underwater, which helped make up for the fact there weren’t as many fish. They also have an adults-only beach which we lounged around on while the kids played games. Castaway Cay had employees everywhere to help take care of the kids so we (Mom and Dad) relaxed and had a daiquiri. It was just like a floating Disneyland!
I (Rebecca) get goosebumps thinking about everything on the cruise ship – it was all so fun and unforgettable! The cruise has a “Midship Detective Agency” where you select the mystery you want to solve and the cruise gives you a card so you can write down all your clues. When you place the card up to a painting, it springs to life – it speaks to you, tells you about the mystery you are working to solve, and gives you hints and directions. One mystery took us two hours because we were chasing clues all over the cruise ship.
They are constantly running first-run movies out near the pool so we got to see Big Friendly Giant, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Jungle Book, and Finding Dory. We also got to experience the Aqua Duct, which is a huge slide that zooms you up and down and swings you out over the boat!
All of us went Goofy Golfing and Disney Cruises also have games like foosball, basketball, and a Tween Club called Edge with events like scavenger hunts and more.
It’s really easy to find characters on the cruise – you only have to wait three or four minutes versus 30 minutes or more at Disneyland. We saw about two a day, and one day we hit five in a row! They also have different versions of the characters, such as Captain Mickey, Traditional Mickey, etc.
The room was awesome! We had an ocean view room with a
really big porthole and window seat. The stateroom was a perfect size and all four of us were comfy and never felt smushed.
You rotate through three restaurants. Enchanted Garden has neat flower lights on the ceiling that open and close and the ceiling changes colors while you eat and Royal Court was extremely elegant and put me in mind of Cinderella. The meals are very gourmet and they have a good variety. My son tried everything, even the escargot at the Royal Court. (He said it tasted like dirt!)
Animators Palette is animation-themed and they leave markers on your table so you can sketch a figure. They provide instructions on how to draw a figure, then they pick up the drawings and at the end of your dinner, they animate your drawings on big screens. You have no warning! They choreograph them to music and place them in Disney clips. My daughter is our artist so she worked really hard on hers and was thrilled – the rest of us weren’t quite as polished
“Our family cannot thank Service Experts enough for this once in a lifetime vacation,” Rebecca wrote after they returned home. “I tear up when I think about the experience as a whole. Entering a contest I never thought would go anywhere, learning we were a finalist, the nail-biting voting phase, the big announcement, planning and selecting which cruise, the anticipation of going and finally experiencing an incredible trip. It was such a fun time living it all. We are so grateful!”
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