Disney Cruise Line will be throwing a party for its new ship Disney Wish when it arrives to Port Canaveral next month, even though it won’t begin sailing with customers until July 14.
Port Canaveral is getting ready for the first new ship from the line in more than a decade as well by granting Disney approval to film the ship’s early morning arrival on June 20. Port officials confirmed crowds would be to access Jetty Park as well. The ship is expected to sail into the port between 4-7 a.m. and will dock at both Cruise Terminal 8 and 10 during that day, according to an event memo.
At the port commission meeting Wednesday, officials approved three days of special events related to the line: June 20, June 29 and July 14.
The June 29 event will feature the ship’s christening ahead of a planned four-night preview cruise for news media and travel agents.
“DCL will conduct on-site installation and event rehearsals from June 16-28,” reads the event memo. “The technical and structural elements that DCL will provide include bleachers, stage, audio towers, light towers, video walls, generators, tents, and special effects.”
Past christenings have included musical performances and fireworks. When Dream debuted in 2011, it featured a performance from actress and singer Jennifer Hudson, honored as that ship’s godmother. No godmother has been announced yet for Disney Wish. Disney Fantasy’s christening took place in New York.
To make room for Disney Wish, Disney Dream, which has never called another port home, is leaving for its new home in Miami on June 6.
“That ship probably won’t be back for a while,” said Port Canaveral CEO Capt. John Murray. “It’s been a long stay since she was delivered.”
Disney Wish is set to take over Dream’s three- and four-night sailings to the Bahamas including stops at Disney’s private island Castaway Cay. Disney Fantasy will remain at the port for mostly seven-night Caribbean sailings.
Before its maiden voyage on July 14, which will also feature celebratory events, Wish will also sail with cast members on some test sailings.
The ship is the first of three in a new Trident class of ships for Disney, the largest in the fleet coming in at 144,000 gross tons and 1,254 staterooms, compared with the 130,000 gross tons of Disney Dream and Fantasy and the 84,000 gross tons of the line’s two original ships Disney Magic and Wonder. The next ships are not due until 2024 and 2025.
Construction on Disney Wish began at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany in 2020, and it only got its first taste of water on Feb. 11 when it was floated out for the first time. Wish left the shipyard in March and has since been completing sea trials in the North Sea in Europe ahead of its transatlantic voyage next month.
It was originally planned to have had a January debut but that fell victim to industry-wide delays during the COVID-19 pandemic. A planned June debut was delayed a further six weeks after the pandemic’s resurgence last fall.
It has the look and feel of its sister ships, but with its own signature offerings from stern character Rapunzel from “Tangled” to the new water coaster that also features a dark ride snaking around the top deck called the AquaMouse.
Inside offerings include dining venues based on “Frozen” and Marvel, both with interactive shows while Star Wars will get its first adult-themed space on a Disney ship with the Star Wars: Hyperspace Lounge.
The popular Oceaneer Club with play spaces for kids ages 3-12 will feature its own Marvel Super Hero Academy seen on other ships along with spaces called Star Wars: Cargo Bay, Fairytale Hall and Walt Disney Imagineering Lab, the first time Disney Imagineering has been highlighted on board a DCL vessel.
The ship will debut a new version of “The Little Mermaid” on stage while bringing back a version of “Disney’s Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular” as well as an original production called “Disney Seas the Adventure.”