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More Than 700 Compete in Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge

posted on January 14th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Today was an exciting day for Disney Cruise Line and runDisney! More than 700 runners completed the inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge, earning the highly prized medal for this first-ever competition.

More Than 700 Compete in Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge More Than 700 Compete in Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge

This event was the first of its kind to be held amid the swaying palm trees and turquoise waters of a private island paradise. Disney cruisers followed a special 5K course throughout Castaway Cay, enjoying unique photo opps and friendly greetings along the way …

More Than 700 Compete in Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge More Than 700 Compete in Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge More Than 700 Compete in Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge

To be eligible for the challenge, runners had to complete any Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend race with a distance of 5K or longer this past weekend. Then they had a few days to rest up, relaxing aboard the Disney Dream, before running through paradise (literally)! The voyage also featured special activities, speakers and merchandise designed for the Castaway Cay Challenge participants.

The next Castaway Cay Challenge takes place following the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend during the four-night cruise aboard the Disney Dream departing February 23. Hope to “run” into you there!

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Disney Cruise Line Recipe: Palo Eggs Benedict

posted on January 13th, 2015 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


If you watched “The Kitchen” on the Food Network this weekend, chances are your mouth is still watering from the eggs benedict I made with the show’s hosts. (A really fun group, by the way!)

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Today, I want to share with you the recipe for this special dish served during brunch in one of our adult-only fine dining restaurants, Palo. I’ve included the recipe using either smoked salmon or ham. Now that I showed you how to create it, it’s your turn to make it at home. Try it this week and let me know how it goes!

Palo Eggs Benedict

Hollandaise Sauce:

  • 1 1/2 cups white wine vinegar
  • 5 peppercorns
  • 1 shallot, finely sliced
  • 1 sprig fresh tarragon
  • 3 large free-range egg yolks
  • 1 cup melted and skimmed (clarified) unsalted butter, warm
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Poached Eggs:

  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • Salt
  • 10 eggs

Toasted English Muffins with Smoked Salmon:

  • 5 English muffins, split
  • 5 ounces salted butter, softened
  • 15 ounces sliced Scottish smoked salmon
  • 2 ounces American caviar

Toasted English Muffins with Ham:

  • 5 English muffins, split
  • 5 ounces salted butter, softened
  • 15 oz thinly sliced, cooked rosemary ham
  • ½ bunch chives, finely sliced

  1. For the hollandaise sauce: Place the white wine vinegar, peppercorns, sliced shallots and tarragon into a pan, bring to the boil and reduce by half. Strain and reserve.
  2. Place a large pot filled partway with water to the boil, then lower and keep at a simmer. Place the egg yolks in a bowl that will fit over the pot of simmering water but not touch the water. Add 1 tablespoon of the reduced vinegar to the eggs and place the bowl on top of the pot, making sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Beat the eggs with a balloon whisk, occasionally removing the bowl from the heat so the mixture does not become scrambled, until the eggs thicken and double in size.
  3. Remove the bowl from the pot, then whisk a small ladle of the warm clarified butter into the eggs. Continue to gradually add the butter while whisking. If the sauce becomes too thick, add a small amount of warm water. Whisk in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
  4. For the poached eggs: Mix the white wine vinegar, some salt and 5 cups water in a pan, bring to the boil and then bring down to a simmer. To poach the eggs, crack each egg into an individual small bowl. Use a whisk to gently stir the simmering poaching liquid in a counter-clockwise direction, and pour each egg into the water in the same direction the water is moving. Gently simmer for 1 minute. Remove with a strainer, drain and place onto a garnished English muffin half. (If you are keeping the eggs for later, remove them from the water with a strainer and place immediately in salted ice water. Reheat them in the same cooking water.)
  5. For the toasted English muffins: Meanwhile, place the English muffin halves into a toaster and toast until golden brown. While the muffins are still warm, spread the softened butter onto the open toasted side of each. Layer 1 1/2 ounces of the sliced salmon or ham on each buttered muffin half.
  6. Spoon 2 tablespoons of the hollandaise sauce over each poached egg. Garnish with 1/2 teaspoon of the caviar (for salmon) or chives (for ham).
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Behind-the-Scenes: Disney Cruise Line on ‘The Kitchen’

posted on January 9th, 2015 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


Recently, I had the opportunity to join the hosts of “The Kitchen,” an entertaining cooking show on the Food Network, to make one of our guest-favorite dishes served aboard all four Disney Cruise Line ships.

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I had great fun cooking with Sunny, Geoffrey, Jeff, Katie and Marcela, and I hope you’ll join me in watching the episode this weekend. It airs tomorrow on the Food Network at 11 a.m. EST and again on Sunday at 1 p.m. EST.

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Any guesses on what we made? Here’s a hint: it’s a dish you’ll definitely want to taste during brunch at Palo! Watch “The Kitchen” this weekend to learn how to make it, and then check back here next week for the recipe.

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Disney Cruise Line Expands Collection of Premium Culinary Offerings at Remy, Including New Progressive Tasting Experience

posted on January 8th, 2015 by Salah Chetbi, Dining and Beverage Standards and Consistency Manager, Disney Cruise Line


Bonjour! If you’ve enjoyed dinner or brunch at our French-inspired restaurant, Remy, on the Disney Fantasy or Disney Dream, no doubt you agree it’s a dining experience unlike any other. The combination of a sophisticated adult-only setting, impeccable service and elegant dishes developed by three Michelin-starred Chef Arnaud Lallement and award-winning Chef Scott Hunnel are unparalleled.

Remy

Now, we’ve expanded our collection of offerings at Remy to include a unique tasting opportunity, a decadent dessert experience, a seasonal truffle menu and special caviar selections. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be telling you more about these offerings, but today I want to give you details on the brand-new Petites Assiettes de Remy, a progressive tasting experience that is the perfect introduction to this fine dining restaurant.

The Petites Assiettes de Remy experience is designed to provide a taste of Remy, where adult guests travel throughout the restaurant to sample small plates of Remy’s gourmet cuisine and fine wine. It is offered during the early evening hours on the first day of each cruise and is hosted by the Executive Chef who serves as an epicurean guide for this six-course culinary journey.

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Throughout the Petites Assiettes experience, Remy’s Sommelier joins the Executive Chef to present specially selected wine that pairs perfectly with each dish.

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Following the first course of blinis with Californian caviar and Champagne in Remy’s spectacular wine room, for the next four courses guests move through the main dining room where they are presented with superb French-inspired dishes from the restaurant’s seasonal menu, such as grilled salmon with smoked salmon cream and Kobe beef with turnip and potato gratin.

Grilled Salmon with Smoked Salmon Cream Dish from the Petites Assiettes de Remy Experience Kobe Beef with Turnip and Potato Gratin Dish from the Petites Assiettes de Remy Experience

This unique tasting opportunity concludes with a sophisticated dessert and the final wine pairing in the private Chef’s Table dining room.

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Check back next week when I’ll tell you about the new offering at Remy created especially for dessert lovers.

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How a Disney Cruise Vacation is the Solution to New Year’s Resolutions

posted on January 6th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Happy New Year! Like many of you, I’ve been reflecting on my goals for 2015, thinking about what I want more (or less) of in my life this year. Chances are, your list of goals for the New Year are similar to mine.

Since cruising with Disney is one of my favorite things to do, I started thinking about how I can accomplish these resolutions by simply doing what I already love to do – taking a Disney cruise! I wrote out some ideas of ways I can meet my goals during my next Disney cruise vacation. Check them out, and let me know if you have other suggestions.

More Family Time: This one is easy. I could go on all day about the things my family can do together onboard … deck parties, stage shows, movies, dance parties, game shows, karaoke, miniature golf … you get the point! It’s no secret that Disney caters to families, so there’s no shortage of activities for quality time together.

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Get Fit: Exercising isn’t always top of mind on vacation, but keeping up with a workout routine is definitely possible on a Disney cruise. Not only is there an outdoor running track and a state-of-the-art fitness center on the ship, there’s a 5K run and yoga on the beach at Castaway Cay. I often find more motivation to exercise when sailing because of the gorgeous ocean views I get to enjoy at the same time.

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Have More Fun: See “more family time” above! In addition to all of the fun things to do as a family, there are also plenty of things I love to do for myself. Again, the list could go on and on, but some of my favorites are riding the AquaDuck, relaxing by the pool in the adult-only Quiet Cove area, eating at Palo for brunch, eating at Palo for dinner and dreaming about the chocolate soufflé I had for dessert at Palo!

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Try Something New: Norway, here I come! Disney Cruise Line is always traveling to new destinations, and sailing the Norwegian fjords is a great “something new” for me to try this year, don’t you think? There’s bound to be exciting shore excursions on the Northern European cruises, so I’m sure it won’t be difficult to try a new experience ashore, too!

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Manage Stress: See all of the above! For me, increasing fun, relaxation and adventure is the perfect stress management tool. In fact, just thinking about my next Disney cruise makes all of my stress melt away. For you, too?

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Vintage Walt Disney World: A Trip Aboard Disney Cruise Line

posted on January 1st, 2015 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe it’s already 2015. (I think that’s a sign I’m getting old.) And with every New Year, I always seem to talk about New Year Resolutions. Maybe I’ll eat better or start a workout regiment in 2015? If only I had a workout buddy like Goofy. Working out with him would be much more fun. Just look at him shooting hoops aboard Disney Cruise Line in February 2000.

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Here’s to year of great fun (and working out, I suppose).

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Top 5 Entertainment Milestones at Disney Parks in 2014

posted on December 31st, 2014 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


There’s nothing our Creative Entertainment team enjoys more than producing amazing live entertainment for our guests. Here are just a few of the new experiences that debuted in Disney Parks around the world in 2014:

Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade: Maleficent from "Sleeping Beauty"

  1. Disney Festival of Fantasy” Parade – This stunning daytime spectacular took to the streets of Magic Kingdom Park in March with amazingly detailed floats, vibrantly colored costumes, energetic performances, and a fire-breathing dragon – all created on an enormous scale never before seen at Walt Disney World Resort!

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  1. Seasonal Celebrations at Disneyland Paris – Already known for their festivals at Halloween and Christmas, Disneyland Paris took it up two notches this year with lively celebrations of spring and summer. “Swing Into Spring” and “Summertime” brought fresh, new promenades and shows to Main Street and the Castle Stage, along with character appearances and live music throughout both parks at the resort.

“For The First Time in Forever: A ‘Frozen’ Sing-Along Celebration”  at Disney's Hollywood Studios

  1. Summer Events at Walt Disney World Resort – It was a summer of hot and cool special events at Walt Disney World Resort. At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Harambe Nights honored the 20th anniversary of “The Lion King” with the hottest party this side of Africa, featuring live concerts, celebrity narrators, and an unforgettable nighttime celebration. Meanwhile, “Frozen Summer Fun LIVE!” at Disney’s Hollywood Studios cooled things down with ice-skating, real snow, and a procession, sing-along, and fireworks featuring appearances by Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf.

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  1. New Disney Character Friends – A highlight of any visit to a Disney Park is getting to meet Mickey Mouse and his pals. In 2014, some other characters stopped in to say “Hello!” for the first time. Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, one of Walt Disney’s first cartoon creations, visited Tokyo DisneySea and Disney California Adventure park, where our guests also got to meet Doc McStuffins from Disney Junior. And Hiro and Baymax flew in hot on the heels of the release of their new movie, “Big Hero 6.”

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  1. Nighttime Spectaculars – Disney Parks dazzled after dark in 2014 with the introduction of several new nighttime spectaculars. The award-winning “Once Upon a Time” came to Tokyo Disneyland in summer, and the new “Disney Paint the Night” Parade lit up Hong Kong Disneyland in October. At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, nightly “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks debuted during Star Wars Weekends, and even more “Frozen” fun was added to “World of Color – Winter Dreams” at Disney California Adventure park and “Disney Dreams… of Christmas” in Disneyland Paris.

All this, plus the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event over Memorial Day weekend, expansion of Halloween on the High Seas to all four ships in the Disney Cruise Line fleet, and more!

There’s been quite a lot happening in the world of Creative Entertainment this year, and 2015 promises to be even bigger, especially with “Frozen Fun” and the Diamond Celebration coming to Disneyland Resort. Keep reading Disney Parks Blog all year long, and we’ll have the scoop for you. Happy new year!

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Five Most Memorable Moments for Disney Cruise Line in 2014

posted on December 30th, 2014 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


As most of us are reflecting on our year and thinking about our most memorable moments, I did the same for Disney Cruise Line. It was a pretty exciting year for us, and there are five things that stood out to me the most …

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  1. Awards include Top Mega-Ship Cruise Line and No. 1 Large Ship Line. For the sixth year in a row, we were recognized as a top cruise line for families in Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards. As if that honor isn’t wonderful enough, we also received the publication’s Top Mega-Ship Cruise Line award for the first time. What’s more, readers of Condé Nast Traveler voted us #1 Large Ship Line in the 2014 Readers’ Choice Awards, based on more than 1 million votes.

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  1. Holiday celebrations are more magical than ever. Not only did our Halloween on the High Seas voyages expand to all four ships, we also premiered brand-new events on our Very Merrytime Cruises. On almost every sailing from early September through the end of the year, cruisers enjoyed a ship decked out with decor and filled with extra special fun themed to the holidays.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

  1. Inaugural season from Puerto Rico kicks off with Southern Caribbean voyages. Our cruises sailing from Puerto Rico brought three more firsts for us this year: San Juan as a homeport, the Southern Caribbean as an itinerary option and Grenada as a new port of call. These four special cruises were just the beginning of our time in San Juan, as we recently announced we’ll be home porting from there again in 2016.

Castaway Cay 5K

  1. The Castaway Cay Challenge is announced as an add-on to the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. We teamed up with runDisney to offer this exclusive experience just for runners competing in the 5K, 10K, half marathon and/or full marathon during the Disney Marathon Weekend in January 2015. The Castaway Cay Challenge takes place during the 4-night Disney Dream cruise that sets sail January 12, 2015.

Norwegian Fjords

  1. The land of “Frozen” is revealed as a new destination in 2015. In summer, we’ll explore Norway for the first time, cruising through the breathtaking Norwegian fjords, in addition to other spectacular northern Europe destinations including Iceland, Denmark, Russia, Sweden, Finland and more. We’re also returning to the Mediterranean, Alaska, Hawaii, the Mexican Riviera and of course, the Caribbean and Bahamas.
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Disney Parks Most-Geotagged Locations on Both Facebook and Instagram in 2014

posted on December 30th, 2014 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


As 2014 is coming to a close, we here at Disney Parks are proud and excited to learn that our fans have made us the most-geotagged locations on both Facebook and Instagram this year! Specifically, Disneyland Resort claimed the top spot on Instagram, with Disney Parks pulling in the most tags on Facebook.

Photo of Main Street U.S.A. from @Disneyland on Instagram Photo of Disney California Adventure from @Disneyland on Instagram
Photo of Fireworks from @Disneyland on Instagram Photo of Sleeping Beauty Castle from @Disneyland on Instagram

Above are a few of the photos we’ve shared from @Disneyland on Instagram this year. As much as we love sharing our photos with you, the most fun part of what we do on Instagram is sharing photos from our guests. The same goes for our @WaltDisneyWorld and @DisneyAulani Instagram feeds – many of the photos shared across all three come directly from fans like you. To share your photo with us, just add #Disneyland, #WaltDisneyWorld or #Aulani to your photo description or tag @Disneyland, @WaltDisneyWorld or @DisneyAulani to your photos during your visit!

Looking for more ways to connect with Disney Parks? I’ve got your handy guide to all things Disney Parks social here:

On Facebook:

On Twitter:

On Instagram:

On Pinterest:

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Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Supports Toys for Tots

posted on December 26th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This holiday season, Disney VoluntEARS continued the 60-year tradition of supporting the Toys for Tots campaign by collecting gifts for children around the globe.

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Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort VoluntEARS supported the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots annual drive. These cast members donated more than 6,000 hours of service to help sort donations and distribute toys to families in need. Disney Cruise Line hosted toy drives onboard their ships, at their homeport in Port Canaveral, Florida and in their shore-side offices. VoluntEARS at Disneyland Paris hosted “Mission Noel.” At this event, they wrapped gifts for children from local communities who were invited to the park for Christmas Eve brunch. In total, our cast members donated more than 40,000 toys, books and games.

Toys for Tots is just one example of how we at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts enrich the lives of kids and families around the globe. Through contributions, collaborations with local organizations, in-kind gifts and volunteerism, we help make lasting and positive change in the world. To learn more about citizenship at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, visit http://aboutdisneyparks.com/citizenship.

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