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Senses Spa, Disney Cruising

By now, you’ve no doubt heard of Disney Cruise Line sister ships, the beautiful new Disney Fantasy, which launched March 2012, and Disney Dream, only a year older.

Aboard both, you can sample Senses Spa and Salon, aptly named because here you can reconnect will all your senses as you retreat from a world of storybook characters and active poolside children to a spot that is all your own, at least for the time you booked.

There’s also an adults-only pool area on the ship which is a great spot to relax.

We were lucky that we got to spend much of the “sail away” aboard Disney Dream in Senses Spa enjoying a couples massage beneath the expert hands of therapists Nova and Wilma.

The first thing we noticed is how beautiful the spa couples treatment room is, and how it’s especially spacious for a cruise ship. There is lots of light from the huge, floor-to-ceiling windows. Our spot on Deck 11 is located just above the bridge, so we have the same view as the captain (though, no doubt, navigating the ship during sail away is much more stressful than what we were experiencing.

We started out face up with a gentle scrub “to get rid of all the bad stuff.” Soon, we moved into the massage, and our two therapists begin to work almost in tandem to start really relaxing those shoreside aches and pains. With the application of a special blend of massage oil and some expert pressure from each of them, we soon were feeling much less of the pressure from all the work back home and much more of the “relax, you’re on vacation” mode.

Fletcher points out there are no Mickey Mouse signs here. It’s nice that there are some adult escapes on a family cruise ship. Yes, kids are great, but mom and dad need downtime, too.

This spa does cater to a younger audience, as well, through a dedicated area called Chill Spa for Teens (ages 13 to 17). Chill has its own space with dedicated treatment rooms and showering facilities plus a separate Chill Spa menu.

Young cruisers can sample a Hot Chocolate Wrap, Fabulous Fruity Facial and Ice Cream Manicures and Pedicures.

As we toured the spa area before our massages, we saw there are lots of opportunities for total relaxation here, from salon mani/pedis and haircuts and styling to acupuncture and even teeth whitening.

The ship also features Spa Villas with their own private hydro-pool baths on the veranda, plus sensory suites where you can have a dry, float experience that literally envelopes the body in a warm waterbed. Warmth and the experience of feeling weightless add up to big relaxation.

Of course, there's also the oceanview gym, a great spot to work off some of the onboard cuisine. One of the special offerings is the Tour De Cycle cycling class.

On the massage menu, there’s an Elemis Aroma Stone Therapy Massage, Thai Poultice Massage, Bamboo Massage, Elemis Deep Tissue Massage, Swedish Massage, and the Couples Massage we are falling in love with, side by side. Also at Castaway Cay, Disney's private Caribbean island, there is the chance to sample a Cabana massage on land. Ask about the special spa villa packages for couples.

When you finish your massage on a Disney cruise, don't be in too big a hurry to leave the spa because you don’t want to miss the Rainforest area which features some incredible showers. This is a special co-ed area that's a thermal suite and more with heated ceramic beds, Laconium and Calderium Hammam and private, hydropools overlooking the vast ocean

If you don't book a treatment, you can still purchase a day pass to this area. As always, the insider tip is try to book your spa appointments before you get on the ship because once you are at sea, those coveted appointment times go quickly, especially for sea days. Also definitely take the spa tour soon after embarkation as there will be drawings to give away some spa treatments, but you must be present to win.

If You're Going: For Disney Dream, Disney Fantasy, or any other Disney Cruise vacation, call 888.272.0644 or 888.418.4206, see your travel agent or visit


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