Afternoon tea is an essential part of the cruise experience for many passengers. Whether it comes with crustless cucumber sandwiches served at the table by white-gloved waiters, or accompanied by jam scones and clotted cream scooped from the buffet, it’s an event to set your watch to, dictating the whole pattern of an afternoon and evening’s activities.
Now it has come to Disney, and how! The Royal Court Royal Tea on Disney Fantasy is an event like no other, elevated to a degree of splendour that would be difficult to match elsewhere.
Guests are welcomed to the Royal Court restaurant by Lady Chamomile and pastry Chef Brule and escorted to their tables by a royal page. Tea, sandwiches, pastries and cupcakes are accompanied by Disney stories and tunes from classic movies such as Cinderella, Snow White, and Sleeping Beauty.
Each young guest is also showered with gifts – there are dolls, memory books and a jewellery box for girls, while boys get a shield and a trademark Disney Duffy bear. Everyone also receives a photograph to remind them of the event.
If that all sounds incredible, then sit back and take a deep breath before thinking about whether to book a place on your next Disney Fantasy cruise. It costs $279 (about £175) for one parent and child. Additional adults cost $69 (£45) and children another $210 (£132).
Forgive me if I am secretly grateful my own kids are all grown up. I can buy an awful lot of G&Ts for £175.