As it’s been over a month since my Disney cruise on the Magic ship, I’d say it was about time to “wrap this series post up.”
This final one will focus on three areas-the staff, shopping, and the Senses Spa and Salon.
On every cruise I’ve taken, the staff has always been incredible. While it may seem that cruise workers have the “life,” in reality, they have some of the hardest jobs imaginable. They are working above and beyond to make sure that you the guest has the best time ever but that doesn’t come without a lot of sweat and toil (literally and figuratively) on their part. Whether it was the cleaning staff, the workers who gave out sanitary wipes prior to entering the restaurants, or the bartenders at any number of the clubs, they all always had a smile on their face and were just so friendly and kind to chat with.
For me being the “global enthused” individual that I am, I always love looking at the name tags of the workers and seeing what countries they’re from. Although there are some Americans who work on the Disney cruise ships, the majority are from overseas, which I feel makes for a more unique experience. I thought it incredibly neat when I saw that a staff member at one of the gift shops on Castaway Cay was from Zimbabwe, an African country thousands of miles away, yet here he was on an island in the Bahamas ringing up transactions.
The only “slight” wrinkle this time was with our rotational servers. As I’ve mentioned before, on a Disney cruise the head waiter and table server follow you each night as you rotate from restaurant to restaurant. In theory it’s so they get to know you and you know them, including things like any allergies, culinary preferences, etc. Unlike on our Disney Dream cruise when we ate at the adults only restaurant our last night, this time on the Magic we ate at Palo on our first night so we didn’t meet our assigned dining staff until our second night on board. O our first night with them (but second night of the cruise), our waiter and table server did the “bare minimum” in terms of pleasantries. Yes, they came to our table when we called them over but they didn’t chat, didn’t engage with us at all. I was somewhat put off by this since I did see them interacting quite a bit with their other table assignments. Thankfully on our last night on board, the table server did at least converse with us a bit more, asking us about our day, and telling us a bit about his native country and how he was going on vacation soon. But for the lead waiter, it was just “good evening” and taking our orders.
While there was nothing rude about this behavior since he did his job, it just was not “Disney Cruise Line” normal. And it’s not as if either D or I come across as rude, stiff individuals either.
Unlike on its newer ship the Dream (and I assume the Fantasy is the same), I didn’t find the shopping opportunities to be as wide and varied on the Magic. However, I certainly made do with what was available. Mickey’s Mates is the largest of the stores and offers all things Disney with merchandise appealing to both children and adults. The Treasure Ketch is geared more towards adults as it offers items like fragrances, jewelry, tax-free watches, and non-Disney marked clothing. Radar Trap and Up Beat are both located in the clubs section of the ship and offer things like liquor and other duty-free goods. I found some of the merchandise to be reasonably priced while other articles like clothing, not so much (but this is with Disney anywhere). For example, we bought our two year old niece a t-shirt and it was $22 (if you know how big a two year is you know there’s not a lot of cloth involved). But yes, stuff is a premium.
Senses Spa and Salon
On my Disney Dream cruise, I had my first ever massage and facial which was heavenly, but wanting a new experience I opted this time for the salon. Currently, my hair is very long and since I never am good with blowing it out, I thought it would be cool to have this professionally done.
I made an appointment for later in the afternoon so that I would look all “gussied up”for dinner that night. The blow out consisted of having my hair washed and then blown out. There isn’t a set price for this service since it depends on your hair’s thickness and length. As mine is both very thick AND very long, it was on the pricier side.
For me, the appointment got off to a bad start. The stylist had me fill out a hair care questionnaire with questions regarding how often you wash your hair, do you use styling products, do you blow dry your hair etc. I get these questionnaires are given out to everyone regardless of the service they’re having done but it seemed none of my answers were “satisfactory” to the stylist, as in I wash my hair too much, I don’t take care of it enough, etc. If you know me you know that I am very simple when it comes to my hair. Call me cheap but I get my hair cut a couple of times a year since I don’t see the need when wanting to grow it that I should be spending $30+ to get .5 inches cut off.
I know she wasn’t doing it to be purposely mean but all I wanted was for my hair to be styled, not to be made to feel bad. It got to the point where I seriously just wanted to say something along the lines of, can we focus on something else but I was not that forward.
Thankfully the mild “berating” did cease and she talked about where she was from, which was South Africa. I was quite happy with how my hair looked once she had finished, although on a future Disney cruise, I’m not sure if I’d go back to the salon. On a cruise, it just seems more fun to indulge in something like a massage or wrap, especially ones that involve chocolate.
NOTE: My wash and blow out came to $70. Yes it quite expensive but one, it’s a salon service on a cruise ship and two, hair length and thickness hike up the cost as well. Like many services on the ship, a 15% tip is automatically included on your bill although you’re encouraged to tip extra depending on what you feel is appropriate.
Salon services that are offered include haircuts, updos, and manicures and pedicures.
My finished hairdoMore in this series!
First travels of 2014
Disney Cruise Review-Magic (Part 1)
Restaurant Review: Disney Cruise Ship’s Palo
Disney Cruise Review-Magic (Part 2) Disney Cruise Review-Magic (Part 3) Attraction Review-Stingray Adventure at Disney’s Castaway Cay Disney Cruise Review-Magic (Part 4)