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Adventures by Disney Announces First-Ever River Cruising Itineraries

posted on April 14th, 2015 by Heather Killingbeck, Director, Trip & Program Development, Adventures By Disney


Adventures by Disney is excited to announce the newest addition to its already exquisite portfolio with the debut of all-new river cruise itineraries for 2016. Sailing with AmaWaterways, the travel industry’s premier luxury river cruise line, Adventures by Disney river cruises offer a new way for families to experience the heart of Europe in a way that is active, immersive and easy. These sailings along the Danube River will give travelers the opportunity to experience iconic locations and hidden gems in eight destinations across four countries – Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary.

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The Adventures by Disney river cruise departures will take guests off the beaten path in search of the culture, art and unique stories intrinsic to each European city and town visited. On this 8-day/7-night voyage, guests will explore castle ruins in Germany, savor chocolate tastings and waltz lessons in Bratislava, visit the locations filmed in the movie “The Sound of Music” in Austria, and so much more. Those looking for even greater immersion into local culture can also add an Adventures by Disney 3-day/2-night pre- or post-river cruise experience in Prague, Czech Republic.

Adventures by Disney river cruises offer maximum port time in each city, arriving at dawn and departing late night. That means more time for you to discover the destination through guided activities and individual exploration for a completely tailored and customizable vacation experience.

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Our guests will sail on the all-new river cruise ship, AmaViola, which is being custom designed with families in mind. New family-friendly design elements include six sets of connecting staterooms, as well as some rooms and suites that accommodate three- and four-person families, and other unique details that lend themselves to luxury family vacations. Shipboard spaces are being reimagined to provide for specially designed activities geared towards kids, teens and adults.

This video offers just a small peek into what this experience has to offer for your family.

Adventures by Disney is a brand known for providing exceptional service and hands-on experiences that appeal to travelers of all ages. These new river cruising departures are designed to meet the needs and interests of all participating family members – allowing grandparents, parents and children alike to make memories that will last a lifetime in a European setting that is truly breathtaking.

For more information on the new Adventures by Disney river cruising itineraries, visit www.AdventuresbyDisney.com.

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Tastes of Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa: Blue Hawaiian at The `Olelo Room

posted on April 13th, 2015 by Tyler Slater, Public Relations Manager, Disney Destinations


Update: 4/16/2015: The Blue Hawaiian recipe has been updated with a few minor changes

Our “Tastes of Aulani” series returns to The ‘Olelo Room at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, to feature another signature Hawaiian cocktail. If you have mastered the Traditional Mai Tai and Mahi Mahi Tacos, now it’s time to test your skills with another classic: the Blue Hawaiian! Our bartenders at Aulani prepare this beverage at The ‘Olelo Room, Off the Hook and Wailana Pool Bar. However, if you’re at home, let cast member Keola show you how to make this beverage below. What other delicious eats and drinks from Aulani would you like to try at home? Tell us in the comments below!

Blue Hawaiian

  • 1 ounce House-made Sweet & Sour
  • 2 ounces Pineapple Juice
  • 1 ounce Old Lahaina Light Rum
  • 1 ounce Ocean Vodka
  • 1/2 ounce BOLS Blue Curaçao
  • Pineapple wedge and pineapple leaf, for garnish
  1. Pour sweet & sour, pineapple juice, rum and Blue Curaçao in mixing glass; fill with ice and shake for 30 seconds.
  2. Pour into tall glass; garnish with pineapple wedge and pineapple leaf.
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Behind the Scenes of ‘Paint the Night’ Parade, Coming for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

posted on April 13th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Opening May 22 as part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, the spectacular new “Paint the Night” parade will feature some of the most innovative floats, vibrant costumes, dazzling special effects, unforgettable music and energetic performances ever presented at Disneyland Resort.

The Entertainment team has been working around the clock to get the “Paint the Night” parade ready for its big debut. Today, we’re pleased to offer you a glimpse at one of our performer rehearsals with the Fiber Fairies from the opening unit and the Cars Crew, who join Mack Truck and Lightning McQueen. Once everything comes together, these talented performers will become an integral part of the show.

The music for the “Paint the Night” parade, a bit of which can be heard in the video, features the wonderful tune, “When Will I See You Again,” by the band Owl City. The song gives a great, contemporary sound to this new, state-of-the-art nighttime parade. And when you see “Paint the Night” in person, be sure to listen closely. You may just hear some musical surprises woven into the soundtrack!

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The BOATHOUSE Makes a Splash at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on April 13th, 2015 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


Over the past year, The BOATHOUSE: Great Food, Waterfront Dining, Dream Boats has been hoisting up along the Downtown Disney skyline. The venue, open today, is the first of several new restaurants coming to The Landing, a new neighborhood that will be part of Disney Springs.

The BOATHOUSE is an upscale waterfront dining experience showcasing steaks, chops, fresh seafood and a raw bar. Built over the water, the 600 seat nautically themed restaurant also features a display of rare dream boats from the 1930s – 1950s, a beautifully crafted water taxi and a fleet of amphibious autos, called Amphicars.

I had the chance to talk with Theron Skees, executive creative director for Walt Disney Imagineering to learn more about how The BOATHOUSE charted its course. Theron shared “It’s been such a team effort between WDI and the Schussler design team; to see Steve’s dream come to life is awesome. It’s been a true collaboration. Guests will experience rooms that represent different time periods in the history of the building, with a focus on a view of the water. Each design element: the height of the restaurant ceiling, the width of the deck, the transparency of the railing, it was all considered so guests would have maximum visibility to the water.”

I got to tour The BOATHOUSE recently, and if stunning water views and impeccable attention-to-detail were what they were aiming for, well, they nailed it!

Earlier today, Pam Brandon shared details on the menu, so now I’m giving you an early look at what else you can expect at this unique location:

Amphicar Rides – Is it a car? A boat? Yes. And yes! Guests can experience the thrill of a Captain’s guided tour aboard a rare Amphicar that drives on land and floats in the water. The $125 price tag includes your own Car Captain and seating for up to three guests. Along the way, you’ll have a great view of Downtown Disney, direct from the water. I tested the Ampihicars last week and had a blast; you literally drive into the lake with a splash – plus, I felt like a celebrity, waving to all the curious guests onshore! This is the only place in the world to ride in these vintage vehicles. Tours are available daily from 10 a.m.-10 p.m., weather permitting, and will be available soon.

The BOATHOUSE Is Set To Make a Splash at Downtown Disney In Florida

Italian Water Taxi Cruise – The Venezia, a breathtaking 40-foot wooden Italian Water Taxi also offers a Captain’s guided tour of Downtown Disney; this one is complete with live music, chocolate-covered strawberries and a champagne toast. Tours will be offered hourly from 10 a.m.-10 p.m., weather permitting, starting soon, for individuals and groups of up to 20. The cost is $75 per person or $50 per child under age 13. (Want a more private tour for two? Ask about the Antique Steamboat Tour aboard Lady Rose; the cost is $150 per couple.)

“Floating Art” – I knew they were beautiful, but I had no idea I was looking at a multi-million dollar fleet of rare boats. Gathered from museums, private collectors, and boat shows from around the world, be sure to take some time to stroll the marina. Photos are not only allowed, but encouraged, so have your camera handy.

Interior Décor – Boat motors mounted on the wall. Trophies from regattas of days gone by. Stunning photography and artwork, some historical, some richly modern. It’s all incredible. But perhaps my favorite décor element is the brand-new boat that the team modified so it could include a dining table. (I’ll just say it now, everyone will want to sit there, me included!) Of course, the true visual hero, even from inside the restaurant, is the water. The good news is that every single table has a great view, so there’s no such thing as a bad seat.

Entertainment – Harbor Master festivities take place throughout the day and evening, with flag ceremonies and lively musical performances of beloved bugle songs, performed aboard Lady Rose. Inside, live entertainment takes center stage with a variety of musical styles – during my “sneak peek,” familiar songs were floating through the restaurant.

Check out the gallery below for a glimpse of what you can expect when you visit.

It’s hard to guess what guests will love most about The BOATHOUSE. What are you most excited for? Tell me in the comments below – I’d love to know!

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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on April 12th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we went behind the scenes for a special look at what it takes to make Sleeping Beauty Castle sparkle for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration — officially kicking off on Friday, May 22.

Watch the Disney Parks Blog for more on the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, and join the conversation with the hashtag #Disneyland60.

And if you’ve been following the Disney Parks Blog, you know we’ve shared dates for 2015’s Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party and continued to keep you up-to-date on this year’s Night of Joy. This week, tickets for all three events went on sale.

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Charles shared an update on what’s shaping up to be a fantastic fall at Walt Disney World Resort. Check his original story for more details about tickets for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party and Disney’s Night of Joy.

Also, to order tickets or find out more information on any of our Magic Kingdom Park special events, you can check out Disneyworld.com, call 407-W-DISNEY or contact your travel agent.

Here are some of the other stories we worked on this week.

Legendary Hatbox Ghost Comes Out to Socialize in the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland Park in May – The Hatbox Ghost is reappearing at Disneyland park in May. Here’s a sneak peek!

Bringing New Magic to Matterhorn Bobsleds and Peter Pan’s Flight at Disneyland Park – As we look forward to celebrating the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, we have exciting changes coming to two of our classic attractions this spring.

Penny for Your Thoughts: Making Coin Presses at the Disneyland Resort Electromechanical Shop – Meet Rob Johnson, who has been making and maintaining coin presses at the Disneyland Resort Electromechanical Shop for 25 years.

A Unique Point of View: Radiator Springs Racers at Disney California Adventure Park – See a perspective most racers don’t get to see when they’re revving their engines at the start line on Radiator Springs Racers at Disney California Adventure park.

D23 Asks, When Did It Start For You? – When did you know you first loved Disney? It may not be your first Disney memory—and it may not even be your favorite Disney memory. But when was the first time Disney made your heart sing and your spirit soar?

New Dooney & Bourke Collections Coming to Marketplace Co-Op at Walt Disney World Resort on April 25 – We have exciting news for Dooney & Bourke fans visiting Walt Disney World Resort later this month. We will release two new collections on April 25 at Cherry Tree Lane in the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace.

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First-Ever Disney Cruise Line Meet-Up Showcases Exciting New Entertainment

posted on April 10th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


Yesterday we hosted our first-ever Disney Cruise Line meet-up! This special event was a sneak peek at exciting new entertainment coming to our ships, and meet-up guests got to go behind the scenes with the creative team who develops our onboard entertainment.

We heard from three show directors about our new series of “Frozen”-inspired experiences, Star Wars Day at Sea and “Tangled: The Musical.” The event was packed full of fun with special appearances by Disney friends like Anna, Elsa and Olaf. We also got a first look at our “Tangled: The Musical” in production, including this never-before-seen artwork of one of the show’s spectacular scenes . . .

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I loved the opportunity to meet hundreds of Disney Parks Blog readers. There were some familiar faces there, too, including friends from “Frozen,” Star Wars and “Tangled.” To be expected, Olaf gave out plenty of warm hugs!

Check out the video and photo gallery below to see highlights from this incredibly fun event. Thanks to all of you who made Disney Cruise Line’s first meet-up a great one!

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It’s Almost Time for an Exclusive Sneak Peek of Disney’s ‘Tomorrowland’ – Only in Disney Parks!

posted on April 10th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


You wanted to see “Tomorrowland.” Here it comes!

Our sneak peek of the new Disney movie begins Friday, April 17, at Disneyland park. Head over to the Tomorrowland Theater for an exclusive look at scenes from the film, complete with special in-theater effects. And you can continue your “Tomorrowland” experience by exploring an all-new exhibit in the Starcade, featuring original props and production artwork.

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Casey (Britt Robertson) ..Ph: Film Frame..?Disney 2015

For those of you visiting Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, you can catch this Disney Parks-exclusive preview of “Tomorrowland” at Epcot, where the sneak peek begins its special engagement at the Imagination Pavilion in Future World on Saturday, April 18, and continues through May 24. At Epcot, you’ll also get a close-up look at one of the jet packs used in the film, along with a display of conceptual art and photos from the set.

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In Disney’s riveting mystery adventure “Tomorrowland,” a jaded scientist and an optimistic teen embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space. Directed by two-time Oscar® winner Brad Bird, “Tomorrowland” stars Academy Award® winner George Clooney as scientist and former boy-genius Frank Walker and Britt Robertson as Casey Newton. Featuring a screenplay by “Lost” writer and co-creator Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird, from a story by Lindelof & Bird & Jeff Jensen, “Tomorrowland” promises to take audiences on a thrill ride of nonstop adventures through new dimensions that have only been dreamed of.

Here’s a look at the latest trailer for “Tomorrowland,” opening in theaters on May 22, 2015.

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Penny for Your Thoughts: Making Coin Presses at the Disneyland Resort Electromechanical Shop

posted on April 9th, 2015 by Shannon Swanson, Public Relations Manager, Disneyland Resort


When I found out there are going to be several new coin presses dedicated to the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, I thought it would be fun to explore this charming collectible a bit more. I met up with Rob Johnson who has been making and maintaining coin presses at the Disneyland Resort Electromechanical Shop for 25 years.

For more information on Disneyland Resort coin presses, including machine locations, click here. The keen collector may also want to pick up a collector’s book which can be found at most coin press locations.

Michelle Harker will be sharing more on the new Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration coin press machines soon, so keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog.

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D23 Asks, When Did It Start For You?

posted on April 9th, 2015 by Jeffrey Epstein, Manager, Marketing


When did you know you first loved Disney? It may not be your first Disney memory—and it may not even be your favorite Disney memory. But when was the first time Disney made your heart sing and your spirit soar?

When did it start for you? That’s the question D23: The Official Disney Fan Club is asking fans, celebrities, Disney luminaries, and even cast members!

Imagineer Vinny Logozio recalls his experience visiting Epcot for the first time when he was just six.

Disney Legend and founder of the Walt Disney Archives Dave Smith remembers going to Disneyland and meeting Walt Disney himself!

These are just a few of the memories people are sharing with us — plus there’s Lance Bass, Disney Legend and animator Floyd Norman, Disney Archivist Kevin Kern, “Cinderella” star Lily James, and a bunch of fan-tastic Disney fans.

And we want to hear your stories too! Post them below and share them on social media using the hashtag #WDIS4U and maybe you’ll see your story on D23.com!

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The Gracey Manor Ghouls Win the Title of 2015 Fan-Favorite Disney Parks Attraction

posted on April 8th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Over the past few weeks, 32 teams inspired by favorite Disney attractions competed for the title of the ultimate Disney attraction. Yesterday, the competition came down to its final round with The Gracey Manor Ghouls at Magic Kingdom Park going head-to-head with Space Mountain Blast at Disneyland park. You voted, and the winning 2015 fan-favorite Disney Parks attraction is The Gracey Manor Ghouls.

Thanks for showing your #DisneySide and helping choose this year’s March Magic winner. Check out the highlights of their high “spirited” celebration below!

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