I want to talk about staterooms, specifically staterooms on the Disney Dream. Let me begin by explaining that a stateroom is similar to a hotel room in terms of amenities, but on a ship, that space that you can call your own for the length of your cruise is referred to a stateroom, or sometimes a cabin.
Speaking of space, staterooms have a history of being. . . well, intimate or cozy—just other words for small or tight, but Disney Cruise Line has changed the industry by making their staterooms 20-25% larger than the industry norm. Just another reason to cruise with Disney!
And, the staterooms on the Dream are a bit smaller than the staterooms on the Magic and Wonder, yet Disney made changes to the design of the staterooms to make sure that guests are comfortable and don’t “feel” that there is less space. Take the bedside tables for example. On the Magic and Wonder, there are actually small tables next to the bed—on both sides. On the Dream, those tables have been replaced by shelves that are attached to the wall, saving several inches of space.
Staterooms are classified by category; the lower the category number, the more expensive the stateroom. Staterooms with letters rather than numbers are typically concierge level staterooms and/or suites. Basic categories include Inside staterooms that are the smallest stateroom. Then there are Deluxe Inside staterooms, that add the Disney Cruise Line split bath.
Oceanview staterooms come next and vary by deck—staterooms of this category on lower decks have 2 small portholes while upper decks have 1 large porthole. This category also offers a Deluxe Family version offering more space to accommodate up to 5 guests in a stateroom.
Then there are the Verandah staterooms and again those vary by deck—ironically, the verandah staterooms on some lower decks have larger verandahs. This category also offers a Deluxe Family version offering more space to accommodate up to 5 guests in a stateroom. The next categories are one bedroom suites and then the Walt and Roy Disney Deluxe Suites.
Other than the Concierge Level suites or staterooms, all guests receive the same level of service. So, if you are staying in a category 11 inside stateroom or a category 6 verandah stateroom, your cabin host/hostess will visit your room twice daily to tidy up, replace towels and products, and either make your beds or turn them down for the night. Also, no matter your stateroom category, you have access to all the shows, restaurants, and activities on the ship! The only difference we have found is that guests staying in staterooms with verandahs get the “solar gel” as a part of their stateroom bath products.
Avid Disney Cruisers know that there are special staterooms on the Magic and Wonder referred to “secret porthole” staterooms or staterooms that are classified as a different category due to obstructed views, etc. We have taken advantage of the obstructed view Cat. 6 stateroom on the Magic that is charged as a Cat. 7 stateroom.
So turn back time to when we booked our upcoming cruise. It was December 2009 and we were booking for July 2011 and the Dream was just being built. We told the on-board booking agent that we wanted a Cat. 9 room with a large porthole with a built in window seat. She suggested a room that corresponded to the obstructed view Cat. 8 rooms that are charged as Cat. 9 staterooms on the Magic and Wonder. You know. . . the deck 5 forward staterooms. We agreed.
As guests frequent the Dream, there are numerous reports of various staterooms. And, because of that, we have learned that the stateroom we booked is classified as a Cat. 8A stateroom on the Dream. There are only 12 staterooms of the category on the ship and boy, are they good ones! They are billed as “Deluxe Family Oceanview Staterooms” with 241 square feet and a split bath. But our stateroom—5022—I have now learned has 320 square feet, 2 large portholes, 2 TV’s and is arranged more like a suite. The only downfalls--no split bath and it only sleeps 3. Once the secret is out on these rooms, they will go fast. And, I know, I’m not helping keep that secret with this post!
Are we excited? You bet! We can’t wait to see what this stateroom is like and enjoy the amenities. Something to be even more excited about for our upcoming Disney Cruise!