We have been waiting for this for a long while, and finally Disney Cruise Line has announced the dry dock Disney Wonder enhancements. The Disney Wonder will be heading to dry dock in Cadiz, Spain on September 9th and will emerge on October 23rd 2016 with some exciting, and long overdue changes.
Disney Wonder Restaurant Enhancements
Tiana’s Place Restaurant
There are exciting changes coming to Parrot Cay. This was always the odd one out of the three rotational dining restaurants on the Disney Wonder. Triton’s has a Little Mermaid theme, Animator’s Palate is very Disney movie themed, and Parrot Cay seemed to have pretty much nothing to do with Disney. Having said that we will be sad to see it go – nostalgia always has it’s place, but it really was time for a complete rethink.
The restaurant will be transformed into Tiana’s Place Restaurant. The restaurant is of course inspired by Princess Tiana and Princess and the Frog. The cuisine will be inspired by the Louisiana bayou and New Orleans style food will be a part of the new menu.
We are told that Princess Tiana’s “personal touch will be evident in the menu, the entertainment and throughout every detail in the restaurant.” Disney has also said that there will be live music which creates a French Quarter supper club atmosphere. There isn’t any other Disney cruise rotational dining restaurant which has live music, so we are interested to see what this brings.
The Animator’s Palate restaurant is being brought up to date with the introduction of “Drawn to Magic” and “Animation Magic.” This will be the same as on her sister ship the Disney Magic.
Thank goodness that Beach Blanket is getting a makeover. The line system for the buffet makes for frustratingly slow progress at the buffet. The Disney Wonder will have the same enhancement that the Disney Magic got to turn this into Cabanas. No art work has yet been released but we would guess that the design will be similar to that on the Disney Magic and will have more open buffet stations, and additional indoor seating.
Palo, the adult only restaurant on the Disney Wonder will get an overhaul as well. The decor will be Venetian in style, so follow the current theme. It will be interesting to see how they will update the look in Palo.
Disney Wonder Adult Nightlife Enhancements
Route 66 No More
Route 66 has always been a rather underused area on the Disney Wonder. The Deck 3 forward area is used for family activities in the day, but at night becomes the adult only entertainment area. Quite often it was pretty much empty in the evenings. This area will be changed into After Hours.
We haven’t really got too much information about what will be happening here. The only art work that has been released is the conversion of Diversions into an English Pub. This is a popular concept on cruise ships, but we are sure that Disney will put it’s own special themed spin on it.
There will also be changes to the Cadillac Lounge – although no details have been released about this other than to say that it will be new.
Other details are thin on the ground as to what will happen to the Route 66 area. We know that Wave Bands will be redesigned, but no word on a new name or any design details.
Disney Wonder Youth Activities Enhancement
All of the youth activities areas on the Disney Wonder will undergo changes during the dry dock refurbishment.
Disney Wonder Oceaneer Club
It seems as though the Marvel Universe will play a large part in the Oceaneer Club. We know that not everyone will agree with this, but we hope that Disney doesn’t become overpowered by Marvel in the kids clubs on the ships. We really don’t want to see Spider-Man walking around the Disney Wonder, but he is of course a very popular character with that age group. We can just about deal with Star Wars characters on limited sailings on the Disney ships, but permanent Marvel characters are a step too far for us so hopefully this will just be in the kid’s clubs.
The Marvel Super Hero Academy will be exclusive to the Disney Wonder. The Academy will have various missions involving the Marvel Super Heroes, and children will take part in these missions. It seems as though some will involve the live characters and others will be based on an interactive screen. The Spider-Man mission will involve the character helping kids perfect their spider like skills of reflex, speed and sharp minds.
There will also be Marvel memorabilia displayed in the Oceaneer’s Club including Captain America’s World War II shield, Iron Man’s helmet, Spider-Man’s web shooters and Black Widow’s gauntlets.
Fortunately there will be other character themed areas in the Oceaneers Club! Of course there will be a Frozen Adventures area. We can’t have a kids club without Anna and Elsa! There will be an interactive screen, as well as in person visits by Anna and Elsa.
Club Disney Junior is also a space for younger Disney guests to enjoy the Disney Junior theme. There aren’t many details of this, but we are told that Doc McStuffins will make an appearance.
Andy’s Room will provide a Toy Story themed area for the younger kids. Again, there isn’t much detail given, but it is apparent that Woody will make a personal appearance.
The Edge which is the tween club, will also be remodeled. No details are given, but it may be that the area is moved to the pool deck games arcade just as it was on the Disney Magic. Really the area at the moment couldn’t be less inspiring, so anything will be an improvement! The pool deck location would also be a much more convenient place to have it.
The “It’s A Small World Nursery” will also be getting a makeover in the Disney Wonder dry dock enhancements.
Disney Wonder Pool Deck Enhancements
This is where we are most surprised at the lack of major changes. When Disney Magic went into dry dock it got the innovative AquaDunk, but whilst there are changes coming which will no doubt be good, the Disney Wonder is not getting an equivalent enhancement. It will however get a new water slide. The Twist ‘n’ Spout will most likely be the same as on the Disney Magic.
We all know that the new movie Finding Dory is released very soon, and of course there would be a new water feature themed after the movie on the Disney Wonder. Dory’s Reef Splash Zone will be added for toddlers and younger kids, and the new AquaLab pool will replace the Mickey Pool.
Disney Wonder Senses Spa and Salon Enhancements
No details have been given, but the Senses Spa and Salon will also be undergoing refurbishment. We are particularly looking forward to seeing what the upgrade is for the Rainforest area of the Spa. The Disney Wonder will also get a Chill Teen Spa to bring it into line with the other Disney ships where this has been available for some time.
Other Disney Wonder Enhancements
The Disney Wonder will get a Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. This really isn’t a surprising enhancement as this is an incredibly popular, and no doubt astonishingly lucrative part of the other Disney ships as well as the Disney parks. Here your young ones can be magically transformed, for a price, into their favorite Disney Princess. Pirate makeovers are available for boys. It isn’t yet known where Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique will be located.
Studio Sea is also being redesigned and will reopen as D Lounge. This lounge on Deck 4 and is used for family entertainment and Disney Vacation Club events. The present decor is very dated, so it will be interesting to see how this lounge is transformed.
If you are thinking of sailing on a cruise on the Disney Wonder we always suggest contacting a Disney Authorized Travel Agent. We recommend Destinations in Florida – Get a Quote Now!. There services are free and you may even get a discount!
Which of the Disney Wonder enhancements are you looking forward to most? What will you be sad to see go?
Alison Meacham is the founder of EverythingMouse Disney Blog. For over 15 years she has shared her love of Disney Parks, Disney Cruises and Universal Orlando. In over 30 years of Disney Travel she has spent countless months in Disney Parks and has sailed on over 45 cruises. A British native and now a United States resident she splits her time between California, Florida and the UK. And spends a serious amount of time sailing the seven seas. She helps over 200,000 people per month follow their Disney travel dreams.