Make that three ships on order for Disney Cruise Line.
Walt Disney Parks and Resorts chairman Bob Chapek on Saturday revealed the four-ship line would add three new vessels by 2023 — one more than previously announced.
Speaking at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, Calif., Chapek said the additional ship would arrive in 2022. That’s right in between the two other vessels Disney already has on order for delivery in 2021 and 2023.
The additional ship will be part of the same series.
“We decided two ships wouldn’t be enough to hold all of the exciting new experiences we have been dreaming up to take family cruise vacations to a whole new level,” Chapek said.
As chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Chapek oversees Disney Cruise Line as well as Disney’s 12 theme parks, dozens of resort hotels and the Disney Vacation Club. Walt Disney Parks and Resorts is a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company (DIS).
The newly announced Disney ship will be built at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. It’s the same shipyard that is building the two previously announced vessels.
While the design of the new ships still is under development, Disney has said they will measure approximately 135,000 tons. That’s slightly larger than Disney’s two newest vessels, Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy, which measure 130,000 tons. Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy debuted in 2011 and 2012, respectively.
Disney has said each of the new ships would have about 1,250 cabins, the same number found on Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy.
Disney on Saturday added that each of the vessels is expected to have its own unique experiences.
Chapek on Saturday promised ships with “immersive Disney storytelling, world-class family entertainment, and imaginative innovations that are fantastically fun and uniquely Disney.”
All three of the new vessels will be powered by liquefied natural gas, a departure from earlier Disney ships.
Launched in 1998, Disney Cruise Line operated for more than a decade with just two vessels, the similarly designed Disney Magic and Disney Wonder. Each of the ships measures 85,000 tons and has 877 cabins. The arrival of the larger Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy at the start of this decade more than doubled the company’s passenger capacity. The three ships on the way will result in nearly another doubling in capacity.
Disney is known for innovation on its cruise ships. Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy feature what are billed as the first water coasters at sea. Disney also was the first cruise operator to offer high-tech virtual windows in windowless “inside” cabins. Dubbed Magical Portholes, the circle-shaped electronic windows offer a real-time view of the sea as well as sightings of animated Disney characters.
Taking place every other year, the D23 Expo is a major event for Disney fans, drawing tens of thousands of people. It’s organized by D23, the official fan club for The Walt Disney Company.
For a deck-by-deck tour of Disney Fantasy, which was Disney’s last new ship, scroll through the carousel at the top of this story. The carousels below offer a deck-by-deck tour of Disney Magic and Disney Wonder.
(Click to enlarge)