Step Aboard Disney's Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser.For an overview of Walt Disney World's Galactic Starcruiser, which opens officially on March 1, please start with our post,
Guests aboard the Galactic Starcruiser are passengers on the Halcyon, a luxurious ship sailing on its 275th anniversary voyage. Rooms in this Star Wars-themed hotel are some of the most unique rooms not just in Walt Disney World, but anywhere in the world. There are three classes of cabins aboard the Halcyon starting with a standard cabin all the way up to the Grand Captain Suite. While space inside each cabin is at a premium, the finish and look of the rooms is befitting the luxury motif Disney wants to portray in the Chandrilla Star Lines. The Chandrilla logo is prominently displayed on the linens and design elements throughout the room. The sleek designs are the exemplification of form meeting function. It’s completely believable that this is what a real cabin on a luxury starship would look like. The colors and textures are straight out of a Star Wars movie, as you would expect.
Each standard cabin has a queen bed that was very comfortable along with 2 in-wall “pod-style” bunk beds.
Photos of these in-wall beds make them look incredibly small, but they are quite spacious. I‘m 5’10”, and had absolutely no problem fitting in these beds, and the linens for them are more like sleeping bags than a standard sheet and comforter/blanket.
The mattress in the pods is a bit on the firm side, but probably won’t be an issue for most kids. I tend to prefer a firmer mattress, so sleeping in the pod on the second night of our stay was very refreshing. Extremely tall guests (over 6’4”) might have some trouble fitting in these pods, and larger guests might have difficulty climbing up into the top pod, but I think they’re appropriate for both kids and most adults. Each pod has a reading light that can be turned to virtually any angle. Similar reading lights are found above the wall-mounted side tables flanking the queen-sized bed. There is also space for luggage storage under one side of the queen bed.
The main part of the cabin is also equipped with a smart television that defaults to display the Halcyon’s current location, but also has the functionality to broadcast Earth TV channels, some limited Disney movies on demand, and can also stream programming your smart phone.
Next to the TV is a sleek wall mounted telephone that looks like something from the 80’s, along with the climate control system, and an interface panel to your own personal droid, D3-O9.
When I first read about this room feature, I expected it to be an Alexa-style AI that would just answer standard questions. However, this interface is a very clever and interesting part of your experience on the Halcyon. When you want to talk to your droid, you press the start button, tap your Magic Band, and she appears on the screen. She will ask you question to establish your profile and is following along with your story aboard the Galactic Starcruiser. She also remembers how you answered questions earlier in your stay, and provides responses based on your experiences. At first, I thought this was pretty corny, but was one of the most interesting pieces of technology used on the Halcyon. In talking with other guests, it seemed like those who took the time to interact with D3-O9 were rewarded with fun and interesting interactions.
On the far end of the standard cabin, there is a pull-out table with rolling stools beneath a space window. The space windows are synchronized with the course of the ship, so when you’re orbiting Batuu, you can see the planet in the window.
When the ship jumps to hyperspace, you can see the stars streaking by. The space window has a number of bright lights framing it to enhance the outer space effect, and it has dynamic images of ships, stars, and planets moving constantly, which might bother some guests trying to sleep. Have no fear, because the window can be “closed” by pressing a button that brings down a shade inside the window and turns off the framing lights to allow the room to be completely dark. Pressing the button again will raise the shade and reactivate the framing lights, with an assortment of accompanying beeps and boops.
In the entryway, there is nook containing a mirror and stand for water bottle and cups
alongside ample closet space with robes, extra linens,
safe, and refrigerator.
The bathroom in the standard cabin is essentially three rooms, a water closet,
and sink area.
The shower is equipped with a very refreshing rain head and a hand nozzle. The shower is quite large, but the absence of a bathtub may bother some guests, especially those with smaller children who might be uncomfortable taking a shower. Bathrooms are equipped with standard toiletry dispensers with premium H2O products along with a “Thermal Blower” (aka hair dryer).
We didn’t have an opportunity to see other rooms, but some standard cabins are also equipped with a pull-out bed under the television to allow for 5 guests to share a single room. Squeezing 5 guests into a standard cabin with luggage and carry-on bags would probably be a tight fit, but the rooms are perfectly sized for four or fewer guests. Galaxy Class and Grand Captain Suites allow for additional space with the Grand Captain Suite featuring two sleeping areas and a second bathroom. Since none of the rooms of the Galactic Starcruiser are connecting, suites are the only way for larger families to stay together.
We really enjoyed our stay in our standard cabin, but there were a couple of issues. The first is that while the room has plenty of plugs for all of your electronics, the way the receptacles are oriented on each plug location may cause larger transformer blocks to block the neighboring receptacle. Also, there was only one USB port in the entire room, which was not a big problem for us since we travel with a USB tower, but some guests expecting enough ports to handle all of their devices might be disappointed. However, I thought it was interesting that housekeeping rolled up and tied every single cord in our room to keep things organized and untangled.
The other issue we had was an unexpected one. Since room windows look out into the vastness of space, there’s no easy visual way to tell what time it is. The only clock in the room is on the default screen of the TV, and the time isn’t prominently displayed there. Because it looks like nighttime in the space window 24 hours a day, it can really mess with your circadian rhythms, and we found ourselves waking up prematurely and checking our phones/watches only to realize it was still the middle of the night. Unfortunately, the side tables are not large enough to accommodate a standard alarm clock, so this is something guests should consider when booking a trip on the Galactic Starcruiser.
Even with those minor issues, the rooms are exactly what I would expect if I was traveling on a luxury spaceship. While a bit on the small size, the rooms are very comfortable with efficient design and plenty of Star Wars touches. The best part is that the rooms are generally quite close to the action on the Halcyon.
More Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser Coverage:
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@Jacob - Ultimately, I think that's something Disney should integrate into the TV, space window, or D3-O9, but for the life of us, we couldn't figure out how to set a sleep timer or alarm on any of those devices. You could set up a wake-up call with the in-room phone, and obviously you could use your personal devices, but if you like a pretty dark room when you sleep, there's really no way to know what time it is or how much longer it is until your wake up call if you happen to awaken prematurely.
It's possible that there are in-room features to do this, but they weren't readily apparent.
I always travel with a small battery-powered alarm clock that has an illuminated screen, auto-activated whenever the light levels drop below a certain point and I’ve lost count of the number of times in hotels, etc. that I’ve been grateful for it. It cost around £10 from memory (so roughly $13 or so) and was worth every penny/cent as I never wake without knowing what time it is and the screen is even bright enough to act as a small night-light.
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I think the rooms look really neat; and while I understand the general criticism of price I think that's what I want when I sign up for this kind of experience.
The most interesting thing to me is your point about losing touch with What Time It Is. I know some people simulate sunrise / sunset / etc. in places close to the Arctic Circle to lessen that impact and I wonder if bringing a device like that is worth it to make the stay a little more restful (or if Disney might seek to do something like that themselves).