All aboard for the galaxy far, far away.
On Sunday at D23 Expo, Disney unveiled new details about Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, the much-hyped Star Wars resort and experience coming to Disney World in Florida.
In essence, it’s a Star Wars hotel on steroids. Guests sign up for a two-day, two-night itinerary aboard the Halcyon, a “glamour starliner” with views of space out of every window — including those in each room. (For the sake of the claustrophobic, I do hope there will be some ways to look out at the real world.)
Essentially, it’s a space cruise that really takes place entirely on the ground in Orlando, Florida.
Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser concept art: the Halcyon
The journey begins at Disney World, where attendees board a pod that carries them to the Halcyon. Once on the ship, they’ll have the opportunity to interact with crew members, including some aliens, and other passengers, and Star Wars characters like Rey, Kylo Ren, and Chewbacca.
There will be activities like lightsaber training, during which guests will get to face off against a training remote just like Luke did, and visits to the bridge, where visitors can learn how to operate the ship’s navigation and defense systems. Guests may wish to dine on board, or explore the mechanics of the ship — and maybe stumble across some secret meetings or two.
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Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser concept art: lightsaber remote training
And, yes, there will a port day to Black Spire Outpost on Batuu — i.e., a visit to the Galaxy’s Edge park.
But the theme that Imagineer Ann Morrow Johnson kept returning to again and again in her presentation was that Galactic Starcruiser would be a chance to be “the hero of your own Star Wars adventure.”
The skills a visitor picks up on the bridge might become useful when the ship runs into trouble, while the allegiances they choose could affect how their “multi-day story” plays out. All aboard, from crew to characters to other passengers, are part of this tale.
Well — in theory, at least. In practice, it’s hard to tell from here how interactive and immersive Galactic Starcruiser will truly be, or indeed how interactive and immersive parkgoers will want it to be.
For that matter, we’re still missing some key details, like when the Galactic Starcruiser will open, or how much it’ll cost us to visit. But the point of the D23 panel was just to get folks hyped — and based on the gasps and murmurs in the crowd, it sure sounds like Disney succeeded.