You may recall the sweet Hall family who were the winners of our Unfrozen Winner contest earlier this year. They won by submitting this precious snowman photo:
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 explain all the fun we had and how absolutely wonderful the whole thing was,” wrote Rebecca. “It was a vacation we could have never made happen on our own. Disney does cruising right!”
The Hall parents were sweet enough to give us their itinerary and some photos from their amazing trip. If you’re thinking about going on a Disney Cruise, or just want to find out what it’s all about, check out the highlights from the Hall’s vacation.
We sailed for 2 days (Saturday and Sunday) and then ported in Tortola, British Virgin Islands. We had reservations for a Catamaran and went out with four different families all day. It was my son and daughter’s first time snorkeling and they loved it. We got to see turtles and stingrays – it was probably the best experience of the whole cruise!
We traveled from Tortola to St. Thomas in the American Virgin Islands, where we were able to snorkel some more, swam, and laid out on the beach. The water was truly that turquoise blue that you see in movies – truly beautiful.
We sailed all day Wednesday and then ported at Castaway Cay, Disney’s Cruise Line Guest-Only Island. The water was incredibly blue and had clear visibility below, so of course - more snorkeling! They placed a bunch of Mickey Mouses you could look for underwater, which was nice because there weren’t as many fish. They also include an 18 and older beach which we took advantage of while Korbin and Brooke played with other kids. The island had staff everywhere to help take care of the kids so we (Mom and Dad) relaxed and drank a daiquiri. It’s like a floating Disneyland!
It gives me goosebumps reminiscing about everything on the boat – it was all so fun and unforgettable! Disney Cruise Line has a “Midship Detective Agency” where you pick the mystery you want to solve and Disney gives you a card so you can write down all your clues. When you hold the card up to a painting, it actually comes to life – it speaks to the group, tells you about the mystery you are solving, and gives you clues and directions. One mystery took us two hours because we were chasing clues all over the ship.
They are always playing first-run movies out near the pool so we got to watch Alice Through the Looking Glass, Jungle Book, and Big Friendly Giant. We also got to experience the Aqua Duct, which is a huge slide that zooms you up and down and swings you out across the boat!
All of us went Goofy Golfing and the cruise also has games like foosball, basketball, and a Tween Club called Edge with things like scavenger hunts, get to you know you games, and more.
It’s so 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 met five in a row! They also have different versions of the characters, such as Captain Mickey, Traditional Mickey, etc.
The stateroom was amazing! We had an ocean view room with a
really big porthole and window seat. The stateroom was a really great size and all four of us were cozy and never felt squished.
You alternate three restaurants. Enchanted Garden has cool flower lights on the ceiling that open and close and the colors change on the ceiling throughout your meal and Royal Court was really elegant and made me think of Cinderella. The meals are very gourmet and they have a good selection. Korbin tried everything, even the escargot at the Royal Court. (He said it tasted like dirt!)
Animators Palette is animation-themed and they put markers on your table so you can illustrate a figure. They give you directions on how to draw a figure, then they pick up the drawings and at the end of your meal, they animate your drawings on these screens on the wall. It’s completely unexpected! They choreograph them to music and position them in Disney clips. My daughter is our artist so she worked really hard on hers and was elated – the rest of us weren’t quite as accomplished
“We cannot thank Service Experts enough for this once in a lifetime opportunity,” Rebecca said after they returned from the trip. “I tear up when I think about the whole experience. Entering a contest I never thought would go anywhere, finding out we were a finalist, the anxious voting stage, the big reveal, planning and selecting which cruise, the elation of going and finally experiencing an incredible vacation. It was such a fun time living it all. Thank you, thank you!”
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