You’ve boarded the Halcyon spaceship headed for the planet of Batuu. A message appears on your mobile Datapad asking you to pledge allegiance to the Rebel Alliance. You must choose your answers carefully—you’ll soon find yourself immersed in a mission that will take you throughout the ship as you hack computer systems and rendezvous at secret meeting locales. As you gaze out the ship’s viewports, you spy ever-changing celestial scenery as the Starcruiser makes its way through the galaxy.
These missions are just part of the interactive adventures you can enjoy at the first-of-its-kind Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, a 2-night experience that feels more like you’re attending a sleepaway camp-style LARP than staying in a hotel located just outside Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park in Central Florida. Disney describes the Galactic Starcruiser as an “immersive-theater experience,” but the journey is more collaborative than that, with participants encouraged to actively take part in the constantly evolving story.
These sorts of Jedi mind tricks aren’t for everyone—as evidenced by the nearly $6,000 price tag (for a family of four). But for those looking for an exercise in true Star Wars extravagance, you won’t find anything more grandiose and all-consuming.
Those familiar with role-playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons will find the same types of storytelling at play at the Galactic Starcruiser, albeit on a much bigger scale. A stay aboard the Halcyon operates much like a cruise ship, with designated departure dates for each 2-night “sailing.” Throughout your time on this land-locked vessel, you help chart the course of your mission, crafting an interactive story with crew members, other passengers, droids, and familiar Star Wars characters such as Rey, Chewbacca, and Kylo Ren.
Along the way, you may encounter the Starcruiser’s strong and charismatic captain, a plucky mechanic, or a charming scoundrel with an ulterior motive, among others. Though you aren’t required to engage in these interactions, this dynamic storytelling is part of what makes the experience so unique.
On board the Halcyon Starcruiser, Disney Imagineers worked to infuse every moment with Star Wars-themed activities. You can learn the ancient ways of the lightsaber during a special training class; visit the Starcruiser’s Bridge to learn about its systems and how to operate them; and play holo-sabacc, a unique game of skill, strategy, and chance, in the ship’s Sublight Lounge.
And when you’re not busy saving the galaxy, you can retreat to your cabin. Though the goal of the ship’s design is to drive you out of your room and into the action, stylistic details abound within the property’s 100 themed cabins and suites, which include family-friendly bunk bed pods and “windows” with views of planets, stars, ships, and additional otherworldly sights.
However, the ship contains no views of the actual Floridian landscape outside your door. While the lack of natural light helps further immerse you in this make-believe world, those seeking sunshine can find it in the ship’s Climate Simulator, which offers a chance to gaze upward at the blue skies and fluffy clouds we’ve all come to know and love here on Earth.
If bright blue shrimp wasn’t a dish you’ve previously craved, go ahead and prepare your palate for it now. While the menus aboard the Galactic Starcruiser are full of familiar tastes, they’re sure to challenge your senses with unexpected colors and textures. The Crown of Corellia Dining Room is where passengers gather for the experience’s included meals. Here you’ll find breakfast and lunch buffets during the day, along with a lavish, multi-course table-service meal each evening.
The first night’s dinner features a live performance from Gaya, a Twi’lek musical superstar, that encourages the room to get up and dance. The second night offers the “Taste Around the Galaxy” dinner experience with courses inspired by different planets, including smoking cheeses and bread reminiscent of molten planet Mustafar, as well as the colorful cobalt shrimp that, according to Starcruiser lore, comes from the dense jungles of Felucia.
The ship’s Sublight Lounge offers additional fare for adults, including an assortment of ales, wines, and signature cocktails from across the galaxy, along with light snacks.
Journey to the planet of Batuu
Unlike a traditional hotel, the Galactic Starcruiser is designed with the intention that you’ll spend your stay enjoying the experience on board. Those looking to visit the surrounding Walt Disney World theme parks should plan to extend their stay at another resort hotel, either before or after their stay on the Halcyon.
However, passengers do leave the Starcruiser on the second day of their vacation, journeying into the carefully designed theme park land of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Guests can participate in new missions throughout the land based on characters they’ve met on board the ship, further extending the experience’s robust storytelling. Plus, Galactic Starcruiser guests receive one-time entry to the park’s two signature attractions, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance and Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.
The unique interactive nature of this never-before-seen adventure, mixed with its niche appeal, boutique hotel size, and upmarket price point, makes a voyage aboard the Halcyon one that’s likely to happen only once in a die-hard Star Wars fan’s lifetime. But for those with the means and desire to suspend disbelief and live out their own personalized Star Wars fantasy, this over-the-top themed experience will lead you to the Wookiees, stormtroopers, and droids you’re looking for.