In April 2011, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg made a fantastic and game changing announcement. Starting in the 2012 season, Disney Cruise Lines will be offering 20 cruises onboard the Disney Magic to set sail from New York Harbor at the Manhattan Cruise Terminal. The combination of one of the greatest cities on Earth with one of the most loved companies and cast of characters is set to bring forward a whole new level to the New York City tourist experience.
Over the last few decades, cruising has become a choice method of vacation for many Americans as well as foreign visitors in New York and around the country. New York is ranked among the top 10 cruise ports in the United States due to the shopping and dining options available to cruisers before and after their journey, which allows those interested in extended vacations the option to take advantage of the many attractions and sightseeing options available in New York as part of the cruise vacation experience.
The addition of Disney Magic and its estimated 56,000 passengers is set to increase tourist revenue to the City of New York by $11 million. In fact, cruising and the overall concentration on the tourist industry is one of the primary reasons that New York seems to be heading out of the recession faster than many other American cities.
In addition to the economic benefits of this partnership, New York City as a port-of-call for Disney Cruises will allow a whole new set of tourists – children – the opportunity to experience the Big Apple first hand. There are many sights in New York that are child-friendly and the diversity of cruise lengths and destinations opens the door for a new type of New York vacation experience whereby parents can rely on some old friends to provide entertainment for a few days before heading to more “sophisticated” fare on land.
Disney Magic will be offering 20 individual cruises from May-September 2012. These will include 8-night trips to the Bahamas, 5-night trips to New England and Canada, and 2-night “weekend getaway” packages. The diversity of offerings will allow visitors to consider a cruise as a part of their New York experience or add New York as part of the cruising experience.
The longest trip to the Bahamas is a special treat as cruisers will be able to visit Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay; Nassau, Bahamas as well as Port Canaveral, FL. When in Florida, each cruise passenger will receive a one-day park hopper pass to Disney theme parks as well as transportation to and from the parks as part of that port-of-call. The trip to New England will include stops at Nova Scotia, St. John, Halifax and New Brunswick.
The Disney Magic took its maiden voyage in 1998 and is honored to have none other than Tinkerbell as the godmother of the ship. It can accommodate up to 2,700 passengers and boasts 10 expansive decks. It is 964 feet long by 106 feet wide with a cast and crew of 950 people aboard the ship. Disney cruise line offers activities and care for even the smallest of passengers in several age-specific and themed kids clubs. Parents are then able to take advantage of adult-only activities at the different ports-of-call.