Spas at Sea

A Disney Cruise Line Spa Review

by Cheryl Pendry, PassPorter Featured Columnist
Last modified 03-08-2012

I might as well be honest. I absolutely adore my spa treatments.


To me, spa treatments are a year-round treat, as I make sure to have regular massages. I find them not only very relaxing, but very therapeutic as well. So when it comes to taking a Disney cruise, it won't surprise you to know that I can often be found in the spa!

Disney Dream - Rainforest photo
Disney Dream - Rainforest

Inside the Rainforest in Senses Spa.

Onboard the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder, the Vista Spa can be found on deck 9 forward, while on the Disney Dream and Fantasy, the Senses Spa is at decks 11 and 12 forward. Because of an increased number of cruisers, Disney increased the size of the spa, but that's not all.

Since the Magic and Wonder were launched, things have changed. The new Senses Spa on the Dream and Fantasy takes that into account, ensuring that the spa treatment rooms are the best and most relaxing that they can be.

I'll level with you here, and say that I find the prices of some of the spa treatments on the Disney Cruise Line a bit of a shock. I tend to find that I can get massages that last longer for a much cheaper rate at home. But don't lose heart. You may still be able to get some treatments at a discounted rate once you're sailing. Keep an eye on your Navigator every day for any offers.

During our recent Alaskan cruise, I was able to snag what was described as a "salon sampler special." For the bargain basement rate of just $99, I received a Frangipani scalp massage, neck and shoulder massage, foot and arm massage, and hand and arm massage. I thought that was a great deal, and immediately snapped it up. I was very impressed that I was able to get it booked, as it was such a low rate, but even more impressed that I was then able to reschedule my treatment time to a later point, as I was late eating that day.

If you want to try and snag a special, it's also worth going along to visit the spa on the afternoon you board. They usually have a raffle for various treatments, and you have to be there to win them. Sadly, we've never been lucky enough to win anything, but what we have discovered is that they often have special offers. On our cruise on the Dream in spring 2011, I was able to snag what was called the "bliss" treatment, which was 75 minutes in length and included a body brush, body milk, facial, neck and shoulder massage, scalp massage, and feet massage, and usually retails at $229. If you booked that afternoon, and had the treatment that night, then it was only $129.

Perhaps one of the most unusual treatments, which we got the chance to try out on our Alaskan cruise, was the Exotic Couples' Rasul Ritual. Again, this was a special offer, free if you bought length of cruise passes to the Tropical Rainforest room (more on that in a moment!) The Rasul Ritual is a hard treatment to describe -- essentially you're left to your own devices for 50 minutes in a small room, which has a steam room to one side, and a shower to the other. Before you're left alone, the spa staff explains the various lotions available during the ritual, and you work through them with your partner -- lotions include things like include exfoliating cream and deep muscle rub. You apply each one in turn, on yourself and/or each other, then shower it off, before moving on to the next. At the end, you're presented with a glass of champagne -- a nice touch. I really wasn't sure about this treatment, but I enjoyed it more than I thought I would. And I was pleasantly surprised that my husband also enjoyed it, as he was even more sceptical than I was about it!

The real joy for me in the spa is the Tropical Rainforest. I just love having somewhere to hang out that's an adults only oasis, where I can relax and just soak up the atmosphere. This is perhaps one of the biggest differences between the old and new ships. On the Magic and Wonder, the Tropical Rainforest is a room with dim lighting, and a fountain in the middle, surrounded by four hot stone chairs. Off to one side is are two steam rooms, one more gentle than the other, with a sauna on the other side. In the middle are a series of showers to enjoy. On the Dream, and Fantasy, the Tropical Rainforest is taken to a new level. The principle is still very much the same, but as you'd expect from a larger ship, there's a lot more room, with ten hot stone chairs in total. Instead of the chairs being in a room with no outside lighting, you have a floor to ceiling view in front of you of the world outside, be it the sea or a port of call. Even better, this Tropical Rainforest adds in two massive hot tubs in a decked area that's completely enclosed, with the same views again. And if you want to spend time in their gentle steam room, that also offers views out as well. I found this made all the difference to the atmosphere, and added so much. It's a wonderful change, and something I'd love to see implemented on the Magic and Wonder one day.



Rainforest Loungers at Senses Spa - Disney Dream photo
Rainforest Loungers at Senses Spa - Disney Dream

Four of the eight loungers available in the Rainforest Room at the Senses Spa & Salon on the Disney Dream ship. Learn more about the Disney Dream at http://www.passporter.com/disney-dream


You don't have to be a spa person to enjoy time in the spa. I think my husband is proof that! On three out of our four Disney cruises to date, he's also got a length of cruise pass to the Rainforest, and has made good use of it. As well as the Rasul treatment, we've also got a couples' massage in the past. If you want some time to yourself to just relax and chill, the spas are are the perfect place to head for. The next time you're onboard one of the Disney ships, be sure to check out the spa!



About the Author: Cheryl is the author of the e-book, PassPorter's Walt Disney World for British Holidaymakers, and is the co-author of PassPorter's Disney Vacation Club Guide: For Members and Members-To-Be. Cheryl and husband Mark live in England and love to travel, particularly to Disney, and they have travelled around the world, taking in a number of Disney cruises, Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Aulani in Hawai'i, Disneyland Paris, Tokyo Disney and Hong Kong Disneyland on the way. Click here to view more of Cheryl's articles!


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Updated 03-08-2012 - Article #784 



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