Launched in 1998, Disney Cruise Line is a family orientated brand offering exciting and entertaining cruises in elegant surroundings.
Since its first ship set sail over ten years ago the cruise line has scooped more than 50 industry awards and is constantly working to introduce new activities and innovations for the benefit of its loyal passengers.
Blast from the past
In 1994 the Walt Disney Company announced plans to branch into the cruise industry and enable people to enjoy the magic of Disney at sea. The company also unveiled plans to create a private island in the Bahamas known as Castaway Cay.
Disney's first passengers were selected by a lottery in 1997 and the following year the company's first ship - Disney Magic - embarked on her maiden voyage on June 20th 1998.
A sophisticated ship, Disney Magic was designed to resemble the great cruise ships of the 1920s, with a distinctly art deco theme. Unlike most other cruise lines, Disney's ships are free from casinos and are designed specifically with families in mind.
In 1999, the first Disney Cruise Line wedding took place at Castaway Cay and that same year Disney Magic celebrated its 100th sailing on July 9th.
The cruise line's second vessel, Disney Wonder, arrived in Port Canaveral on August 2nd 1999 and embarked on her maiden voyage on August 15th.
Like the Disney Magic, the Disney Wonder was built by the legendary Fincantieri Shipyards in Italy and features a large painting on its stern of Donald Duck and his nephew Huey.
Designed to have an art nouveau feel, the ship's interior features swirling wave designs throughout.
Just two years later the cruise line went on to welcome its one-millionth guest, on August 30th 2001.
According to Cruise Critic, Disney offers one of the "most unique" experiences at sea and, since its launch, has introduced many new innovations.
Disney was one of the first cruise lines to introduce the concept of a rotating dining schedules, as well as its famous bath-and-a-half cabins. Unlike most other cruise ships, the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder are casino-free and do not have libraries. In addition, Disney was the first cruise lines to introduce a soda card scheme for its passengers - something which has since been adopted by numerous other cruise lines.
In 2004, both ships underwent renovations and now feature three new areas, including an adults-only cafe, an English-style sports bar and a teenage coffee house. Cabins were also kitted out with new mattresses, towels and luxury bed sheets.
Cruising into the future
Disney Cruise Line has gone from strength-to-strength in recent years and in 2007 announced that two new vessels will be added to the fleet. The ships, which have not yet been named, will launch in 2011 and 2012. Weighing in at 122,000 tonnes, the new vessels will be two decks higher than the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder. It is thought that the ships will feature 1,250 staterooms.
Just this month Disney was ranked number one for 'cruise experiences' by the readers of Conde Nast Traveller magazine, with votes being cast for the quality of staterooms, design, dining, itineraries and shore excursions.
Speaking at the time, Disney president Tom McAlpin said: "We are pleased to receive this honour from the readers of such an esteemed travel publication.
"Winning the No. 1 spot is a testament to the beauty of our ships and the dedication our cast and crew members have in creating an unparalleled vacation for every member of the family."
In addition, readers ranked Disney's onboard spas among the top five best at sea and Disney Magic was ranked number one in the large ship category.
Over its relatively short lifetime Disney has already scooped more than 50 awards - impressive by anyone's standards - and it continues to come up with new and creative ways to make the cruise experience even better for its passengers.
The cruise line prides itself on providing families with a place to recharge their batteries and enjoy quality time together in a world of laughter and magic that only Disney can create.