Expansion of Disney's Fleet is Under Way
Disney Cruise Line is expanding its fleet. It's finalized a contract with Germany's Meyer Werft shipyard to build two new 124,000-ton ships, a step up in tonnage from its existing 83,000 ton vessels.
Disney Cruise Line President Tom McAlpin and Bernard Meyer, managing partner of Meyer Werft shipyard of Papenburg, Germany, signed the contract in front of several hundred cheering cast members at a Disney Cruise Line cast gathering in the Orlando area
Disney Cruise Line President Tom McAlpin and Bernard Meyer, managing partner of Meyer Werft shipyard of Papenburg, Germany, sign a contract for two new Disney vessels to be built in Germany.*
"This is an exciting time at Disney Cruise Line, and we are looking forward to working with Meyer Werft to build two new innovative ships that will take our immersive family-focused cruise experience to an entirely new level," McAlpin said at the signing.
Plans to add the two 124,000-ton ships to the fleet had been under development for some time. The official announcement was made in February when executives signed a letter of intent to negotiate a construction contract with Meyer Werft.
Scheduled to launch in 2011 and 2012, the ships will more than double the passenger capacity for Disney Cruise Line to meet the sustained demand for Disney's family cruise vacations.
Launched in 1998, Disney Cruise Line traditionally offers three-, four- and seven-night Caribbean cruises. But it's recently enjoyed strong demand for new itineraries including the Mediterranean and the West Coast.
The line will continue to offer Caribbean journeys from the U.S. but "expanding our fleet will give us the flexibility to offer a variety of itineraries in the future," McAlpin said. "We are looking forward to taking our guests on new adventures to different parts of the world with Disney Cruise Line."
The new ocean liners will be significantly larger than the existing 83,000-ton ships, the Disney Magic and the Disney Wonder, both of which have 1,250 staterooms each. Both new ships will be built at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. They'll feature elegant, detailed Disney scrollwork at the bow and evoke images of the glamour of the golden age of cruising.
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