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Disney Cruises aren’t known to be easy on the wallet, and the concierge staterooms are at the tip-top of the Disney cruise pricing spectrum. Is it worth it to pay $10,000, $20,000, or even more to get Disney Cruise Line’s highest level of luxury and service? While only you and your budget can decide what’s a reasonable vacation spend, here’s a breakdown of exactly what you get when you book a concierge.
I’ve sailed on four of the five Disney Cruise Line vessels: the Disney Wish, Disney Dream, Disney Magic, and the Disney Wonder. I’ll be on the Disney Fantasy during spring break 2024, and then I’ll be what is known as a Grand Slam Disney cruiser.
I’ve sailed concierge on the Disney Magic and the Disney Dream and have a concierge suite booked on the Disney Magic for 2024. I think it’s the ultimate Disney vacation. Here’s what you can expect when sailing Disney Cruise concierge level.
Types of Concierge Staterooms
The initial price you’ll see for a concierge stateroom when you’re on Disney Cruise Line’s website will be the lowest price of a concierge stateroom for that particular cruise. And the price of a concierge stateroom varies a lot. The type of stateroom, length of cruise, and time of year are all things that factor into the price of a concierge stateroom. A concierge stateroom on a longer cruise during peak season will be more expensive than a three-night cruise during off-season or shoulder season.
There are four different categories/types of concierge staterooms. The offerings vary from ship to ship.
- 1A – Royal Suite
- 1B – Concierge 2-bedroom Suite With Verandah
- 2A or 2B (there’s some variation between ships) – Concierge 1-bedroom Suite With Verandah
- 3A – Concierge Family Oceanview Stateroom With Verandah
Concierge Royal Suite
Each ship has at least one Royal Suite or Tower Suite. These luxe accommodations sleep six and have separate living areas, dining areas, and private hot tubs. The newest Royal Suites on the Disney Wish are Sleeping Beauty-themed. If you want the highest of high-end and are prepared to pay the price, these suites are the ultimate experience on board a Disney Cruise.
I recommend booking with a travel agent who can help you navigate the availability of these suites. Since they’re in limited numbers, they tend to book up fast, so if you’ve got your heart set on staying in a Royal Suite, a travel agent has a better view of availability across the fleet.
One and Two-Bedroom Suites
These suites offer space to spread out at a more affordable price than the Royal Suite, although affordable is a relative term for concierge staterooms.
My family and I stayed in a one-bedroom suite on the Disney Dream, and we enjoyed the extra space and privacy. The king-sized bed had pocket doors that separated our sleeping space from the rest of the room, and we had two full baths, one with an oversized bathtub. Our kids slept on a pullout couch and a Murphy bed in the living room.
Concierge Family Oceanview Stateroom With Verandah
The Concierge Family Oceanview Stateroom With Verandah is the least expensive concierge room. The room is very similar to a non-concierge oceanview stateroom with a verandah and is essentially a category 4 or 5 stateroom with concierge room decor and amenities and access to concierge services, such as the lounge and pre-arrival assistance. If you want the white glove VIP service but don’t need a bunch of extra room, this is the way to go.
Castaway Club Levels and Booking Windows
When you can book port adventures and onboard fun depends on your Castaway Club level. Being concierge trumps all Castaway Club levels except Pearl, which was added in 2023.
Silver – At least one Disney cruise
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Gold – At least five Disney cruises
Platinum – At least 10 Disney cruises
Pearl – 25 or more Disney Cruises
Pearl Castaway Club – 123 days before sailing
Concierge guests – 120 days before sailing
Platinum Castaway Club – 120 days before sailing
Gold Castaway Club – 105 days before sailing
Silver Castaway Club – 90 days before sailing
First-time cruisers – 75 days before sailing
In-room perks include bathrobes* and slippers, elevated toiletries, plus a few extra things that regular staterooms don’t include, such as cotton swabs, emery boards, insulated pads for your heat styling tools to rest upon while they’re cooling.
There is also a pillow menu and the oh-so-sumptuous Frette bed linens. Look up the prices of this luxury bedding, and you’ll understand how seriously Disney takes making their concierge guests feel special and pampered. Concierge guests will also find their in-room refrigerators stocked with bottled water and sodas. Your stateroom attendant will take care of restocking, and if you want more or less of something, you only have to ask.
Disney Cruise Line Concierge guests also get free wifi. Check with your concierge hosts to make sure you understand what type of package you’re getting – this can vary by type of concierge stateroom – and for help with getting online, if needed.
*The new Disney Wish includes bathrobes in all staterooms, but the other four ships do not provide bathrobes outside of concierge-level staterooms.
Enhanced Room Service
Room service is included on all Disney cruises, but concierge guests can get full hot breakfasts – pancakes, eggs, omelets – delivered to their rooms. All other guests can get continental breakfast delivered to their room, but one of the concierge perks is that you’re not limited to pastries and yogurt if you don’t want to go to the dining room or buffet for breakfast.
Concierge Perks on Land
Once you reserve a concierge stateroom on a Disney cruise, you’ll receive an email from Disney’s Shoreside Concierge Services with instructions on what to do next. Essentially, your shore excursions – Disney Cruise Line calls these Port Adventures – and onboard reservations are made for you by the shoreside concierge team. Your initial email will give instructions and a date when you need to let the concierge team know what you want them to book.
A coveted cabana at Castaway Cay? Check. A reservation at Palo, Palo Steakhouse, Remy, or Enchanté? Check. A special table location in one of the main dining rooms, such as near the stage? Check. Concierge guests get the first crack at experiences that typically book up quickly.
Once you’re back on land, no standing in long lines to leave the ship. Concierge guests are escorted off by the concierge hosts. While no one likes their cruise to end, this level of white-glove service ends a vacation on a high note.
This is where you really start to feel like a rock star. You’ll be directed to the concierge line when you arrive at the port. The higher price tag means shorter lines, and your check-in process will be expedited. Once you’re done checking in, you’ll be directed to a special concierge lounge or waiting area. This will vary from port to port, but you’ll wait to board separately from the rest of the guests. Concierge passengers will also get a gold sticker to wear on their clothing so that the Disney Cast Members on board will know you’re concierge. After the first day, they’ll know who you are.
Concierge guests do not have to sign up for a port arrival time, as other guests do. They’re given the opportunity to board the ship first, but they can board at any time during the boarding process.
Since getting on the ship earliest means starting your vacation earliest, I recommend being in that first boarding group to maximize your investment and have more fun.
Concierge Embarkation Day Lunch
There’s a special lunch welcoming the concierge guests on board the cruise ship, which is where you’ll be ushered as soon as you step onto the ship. Your gold sticker will help the Cast Members guide you to whatever dining room is designated for the concierge guests’ first-day lunch.
Your lunch menu will be the same as what’s offered to non-concierge guests, but concierge guests get alcohol and specialty drinks at no extra charge. That applies to this first-day lunch only. All other drinks in the dining room that aren’t included in the price of your cruise will be the responsibility of the guests on subsequent lunches and dinners.
During the lunch, you’ll be visited by the Concierge Team. There are usually three dedicated Concierge Team members who man the Concierge Lounge on board and help attend to the concierge guests – larger sailings may have more but three is pretty standard.
They’ll introduce themselves and go over your plans to make sure everything is in order, so if you want to make any adjustments or add special dining reservations, you can let them know at that time. You may also be visited by a member of the Senses Spa team who can assist you in booking spa treatments or Rainforest Room passes. Every interaction is designed to make things easy and seamless for the guest.
The Concierge Lounge
Concierge guests have access to the concierge lounge and concierge sundeck. While these spaces vary somewhat from ship to ship, there’s a special food and beverage service exclusive to concierge guests. With the exception of the Disney Wish, whose concierge lounge has a dedicated galley, the buffet items are cold food. There’s a nice mix of sweet and savory bites and fresh fruit. The food offerings are rotated five times a day, so we always find something different waiting for us.
The lounge will also have seating, newspapers and magazines, and a television. There are lots of lovely bars and lounges on all the Disney ships but the lounge is an intimate, exclusive space to relax.
There’s also a selection of non-alcoholic drinks, such as bottled water, bottled soda, juices, and milk, and a self-serve coffee machine that makes a variety of coffee drinks. Aside from the coffee available for purchase at the Cove Cafe, the Concierge Lounge has the best coffee on the ship.
The Concierge Lounge is open from 7:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. daily and there’s always an attendant on duty. Only guests in concierge rooms may enter, so if you’re sailing with friends or family who aren’t in concierge rooms or suites, don’t try to bring them in.
Okay, so it’s not really free but some alcohol is included in the price of your cruise when you sail concierge. If you enjoy alcoholic beverages, you might see the included alcohol as one of the biggest perks of a sailing concierge. Alcohol – beer, wine, and cocktails – is available on embarkation day until around 4:00 p.m. and thereafter from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. They also serve mocktails.
Dedicated Character Meet-And-Greet
There’s often a dedicated character meet-and-greet in the lounge. The advantage is being able to interact with characters in a more intimate setting without waiting in a long line. If you are interested in this activity, ask your concierge hosts as soon as you board the ship.
The Concierge Sun Deck
The concierge sun deck is a private sundeck with seating and perks such as cold water, cold face cloths, sunscreen, and elevated beach towels and seating. The Dream, Fantasy, and Wish all have hot tubs, and the Wish also has a private wading pool. It’s a nice respite from the often-crowded pool deck, especially on sea days.
And, tip your concierge hosts at the end of the cruise. Disney Cruise Line recommends $15.50 per person per day, although you may want to consider more for exceptional service.
Oh, Those Coveted Castaway Cay Cabanas
Castaway Cay is Disney’s private island in the Bahamas, and a stop here is included on most Bahamian and Caribbean cruises. The island has many amenities that don’t cost a thing, including a buffet lunch, but guests who want to squeeze the most juice out of their day can book one of 27 private cabanas. There are 21 cabanas on the family beach and six on Serenity Bay, the adults-only beach area.
The scarcity principle definitely applies here – there aren’t many cabanas, so everyone wants one, despite the eyebrow-raising price – the cabanas on the family beach currently run almost $800 for six guests. Since concierge guests get first dibs on bookings, the cabanas are usually snapped up pretty quickly.
My family and I sailed concierge on the Disney Dream, and I requested a cabana on Castaway Cay less than one minute after my booking request window opened. We were put on a waitlist but eventually got a cabana. It was a fantastic experience, but I’m not sure if it was worth the high price tag.
Castaway Club Pearl Level Might Make Those Cabanas Even Harder To Book
But, booking cabanas on Castaway Cay if you’re not a concierge or at least a platinum-level cruiser, is difficult, if not impossible. If you really want to cross the cabanas off your bucket list, booking a concierge stateroom is as close to a sure thing as you can get. The new addition of the Pearl Castaway Club level may make it more challenging for Concierge guests to get Cabanas. A three-day jump on activity booking might not seem like a lot, but Pearl Castaway Club members are cruisers with 25+ Disney cruises under their belt, and they know how to be on the ball with booking activities and extras.
The VIP Show Experience
Concierge guests get jump-the-line access to the shows in the Walt Disney Theater. These Broadway-quality shows are popular on all the DCL ships, and the seats fill up fast. The concierge guests will have a designated meeting place about 30 minutes before the show and will be escorted into the theater by the concierge hosts. There’s also free popcorn, bottled water, and bottled soda.
So, Is It Worth It?
If you’re going to tally every glass of champagne or bucket of popcorn and expect the savings to equal the difference between non-concierge and concierge, then no. While sweet, the perks will not add up to meet the extra cost financially, so don’t approach booking a concierge stateroom with that mindset.
Service on a Disney Cruise Line ship is stellar no matter where you stay. I’ve stayed in the cheapest interior stateroom and still been treated like visiting royalty. The concierge takes the service up a notch, and it’s a fun splurge if you really place a high value on VIP or exclusive experiences. If you’ve got the money to spend or you’re celebrating a special occasion, and your vacation mantra is “Go big,” then you’ll enjoy the experience.
If you plan to be a repeat cruiser, the experience might spoil you when you return to non-concierge staterooms. My family’s recent sail on the Disney Wish was not in concierge, unlike our previous two cruises. While we had nothing less than a fantastic time, we did have that little twinge of “I wish we were in concierge” every time we passed the lounge or had to wait in line.
We’ve never regretted our decision, but we also know that sailing concierge every time we take a cruise is not a realistic vacation plan for our family.