Disney Pulls The Plug On The Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser

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Welcome aboard, Rebelscum. A surprising announcement from Disney: the Galactic Starcruiser hotel experience is coming to an end. The first voyage was in March of 2022, a little more than a year ago. The signs have not been positive for the Starcruiser for some time now: decreased demand, Disney has been offering discounts to castmembers, and the ever-present complaints of the high cost of entry.




For the full story, check out the article from WDW News Today. Here are the important bits:

Disney’s statement on the matter reads:

“Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser is one of our most creative projects ever and has been praised by our Guests and recognized for setting a new bar for innovation and immersive entertainment. This premium experience gave us the opportunity to try new things on a smaller scale of 100 rooms, and we will take what we’ve learned to create future experiences that can reach more of our Guests and fans.
We will be contacting Guests booked for voyages departing on or after Sept. 30 to discuss their options and modify their plans. To prioritize these Guests, we are pausing new bookings until May 26.

We are so proud of all of the Cast Members and Imagineers who brought Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser to life and look forward to delivering an excellent experience for Guests during the remaining voyages over the coming months.”



The Starcruiser won the TEA Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement in Brand Experience last year.

Before the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser opened, it went through waves of selling out followed by mass cancellations. Right before the grand opening in March 2022, several months were completely booked. Despite generally positive reactions, cancellations increased after opening.

Back in May 2022, CEO Bob Chapek boasted of continued “high demand” for the Starcruiser and an expectation for the 2-night experience to reach “100% utilization” for the third quarter, meaning they expect the Starcruiser to continue to reach capacity for each “voyage.”




This is a big black eye for Disney and Lucasfilm, there's no other way to look at it. The Galactic Starcruiser was a massive investment and it's a shame that it didn't work out. Let's hope all the parties involved learn the right lessons from the endeavor. The main complaints we heard were the high cost, which was a barrier to many potential guests, and the theming. Most feedback I heard from critics revolved around it not looking or feeling like Star Wars, but instead more slick like Star Trek.



The positives can't be ignored though. The reviews of the cuisine were top notch. The main component of the Starcruiser that is difficult to quantify is the immersion, the story, and the ability to completely disconnect and live in Star Wars for a couple of days.

I know it's a long (practically impossible) shot, but part of me is holding out hope that Lucasfilm and the Disney Imagineers can overhaul the Halcyon. I think with some re-theming, a sharp change in business strategy, and a significantly lower price point, they might be able salvage the Starcruiser.

Here's a look back at Joshua and Bobby's trip last year, turns out it was their first and last visit.


What do you think Rebelscum? Would you like to see the Starcruiser rehabbed and relaunched? Or is it best to scrap it and try something else? Sound off below!


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I would've loved to stay there, but 2 nights was $2k a person (not including any other expenses)...what average person can afford that kind of hotel?
my thoughts exactly. they should have made this more affordable for everyone. maybe charged $900 for the 2 nights as they know the fans will clean out the souvenirs from the giftshops and spend the rest of the $$ on Batuu
 
Price was the biggest obstacle here for most people. I think for two people, three days and two nights was about $4,800. That outpriced probably 99% of fans.

I do find it very interesting that they are not even trying to lower prices to see if that brings more people in and that they're just flat out closing it. Their costs must be too high on it that they need to charge so much to break even.
 
There is a lot to unpack about this ending.

I don't think anyone that was a big fan of Star Wars looked at this and thought it was great. It was obviously too expensive for the average person and it wasn't awesome enough for the diehard fans. I saw good reviews but none of it was about how the Star Wars part was so amazing... it was an experience for the rich and Instagram.

A very interesting concept that was plagued by poor execution and poor timing. Still... I would've been happy to get a chance to see it. Galaxy's Edge was generic enough to appeal to a wide Star Wars audience. This was just generic.
 
There is a lot to unpack about this ending.

I don't think anyone that was a big fan of Star Wars looked at this and thought it was great. It was obviously too expensive for the average person and it wasn't awesome enough for the diehard fans. I saw good reviews but none of it was about how the Star Wars part was so amazing... it was an experience for the rich and Instagram.

A very interesting concept that was plagued by poor execution and poor timing. Still... I would've been happy to get a chance to see it. Galaxy's Edge was generic enough to appeal to a wide Star Wars audience. This was just generic.
Every single person I've personally spoken to who has gone (at least ten people) has had nothing but amazing things to say about it.

And so do I. It was wonderful.
 
It feels like they wanted their money back fast, with those prices, instead of thinking long term.
It makes you wonder what kind of people makes these decisions.
Why the hurry?
Bob Iger has a (rather ridiculous) goal of trying to slash $5 billion from Disney's budget.

So here come the layoffs, followed by cancelling expensive underperformers like the Starcruiser.

No time to try to fix it when you can just make it go away.

It's unfortunate, but there it is.
 
I would've loved to stay there, but 2 nights was $2k a person (not including any other expenses)...what average person can afford that kind of hotel?
It's an all-inclusive experience, not a hotel. So you could just pay the $2k and nothing else if you wanted and get the full experience. Not cheap, certainly, but that's all you'd really need to spend beyond travel.

One of my friends who came with me did exactly that. Cheap ass flight in on Spirit, did the cruiser, spent maybe $100 extra bucks on cocktails and then went straight home.
 
When tickets open up again they will be fully booked till the end.

That said they can reuse the space as a SW hotel without the 2 day quarantine.

it was a nice concept but it really got caught up in things it couldn’t control. (SW OT vs Mando vs ST. ) It’s a cruise ship that doesn’t really go anywhere but you can’t leave.
 
Every single person I've personally spoken to who has gone (at least ten people) has had nothing but amazing things to say about it.

And so do I. It was wonderful.
I heard good things too. Maybe I only speak for myself, but if I'm paying what they charged I would expect nonstop entertainment and food and amenities and all the stuff that a cruise or all-inclusive provides. I did not get to go, so maybe that is what people were getting and maybe I'm wrong and it was fully worth what they charged...

I'm assuming not, because most of the time you don't close down a highly successful venture.
 
I heard good things too. Maybe I only speak for myself, but if I'm paying what they charged I would expect nonstop entertainment and food and amenities and all the stuff that a cruise or all-inclusive provides. I did not get to go, so maybe that is what people were getting and maybe I'm wrong and it was fully worth what they charged...
That's literally what you get. The entertainment and activities are nonstop. The food is all-inclusive and constantly available (minus booze.) If you're doing it right, you'll never be bored and have almost no downtime. Things stop at about 11:00pm both nights, at which point it's time to go to the lounge for sabacc, cocktails and carousing.

Not sure what you're looking for. But your criticisms highlight the starcruiser's biggest problem, which was PR. Even a year into the experience, most people really didn't know what it was actually all about.
I'm assuming not, because most of the time you don't close down a highly successful venture.
Financially successful doesn't mean the experience is bad. Amazing movies flop, fantastic restaurants close, beloved shows get cancelled. This is the way of the world.
 
When tickets open up again they will be fully booked till the end.

That said they can reuse the space as a SW hotel without the 2 day quarantine.

They really can't, though. It's not made to be a hotel. It's situated in a parking lot. There's no landscaping or anything around it at all. It has only 100 rooms (which are small.) It has no hotel amenities to speak of. It has numerous story-specific rooms that would be completely useless in a real hotel. Trying to retrofit it into a hotel would be harder than just making something from scratch.
it was a nice concept but it really got caught up in things it couldn’t control. (SW OT vs Mando vs ST. ) It’s a cruise ship that doesn’t really go anywhere but you can’t leave.
The journey is the destination. You could leave whenever you wanted to, but why would you? It wasn't just lodging, the whole point was to go spend time on the ship and live the experience, not drop off your bags and go to Space Mountain.
 
Honestly, all I would really want is a cool Star Wars hotel when I visit Galaxy's Edge. Maybe like staying at a hotel if I visited Coruscant, for example. Maybe have some unique restaurant/lounge kind of place. I wouldn't need the whole interactive experience other than the hotel itself being authentically Star Wars in design and not something dumb like just taking a regular hotel and hanging Star Wars art on the wall and Star Wars bed sheets.
 
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Honestly, all I would really want is a cool Star Wars hotel when I visit Galaxies Edge. Maybe like staying at a hotel if I visited Coruscant, for example. Maybe have some unique restaurant/lounge kind of place. I wouldn't need the whole interactive experience other than the hotel itself being authentically Star Wars in design and not something dumb like just taking a regular hotel and hanging Star Wars art on the wall and Star Wars bed sheets.
Yes that's how they should of done it. I don't think it was a well thought out concept. There's not really that many hard core SW fans that are going to throw down that kind of money on an "experience" and keep coming back to keep the place funded. I hate guided tours for one and wouldn't want to have to deal with that on vacation. I like making my own adventures and not being sequestered at one location to get my money's worth. Just give us a more economical hotel that has some cool bells and whistles. I'm sure it's a wonderful experience and all but I highly doubt they got many returning guests.

Also, I have no idea what it is like but from the videos and pics, it appears to be all ST related. Disney should lay off that era going forward, it's not very appealing and I doubt it's enticing a new wave of fans like the Mando or Clone eras do.. I'm not a ST hater but with all the SW film/tv that's out there, that's probably the least covered era.
 
I was hoping this would stick around and have a refresh every couple of years. After we went and experienced the story there was absolutely no reason to go back. All that being said, was it expensive? yes. Did I think it would be worth it? No. Was watching my 8 year old light up at the first sighting of a real life astromech roll up to him out of nowhere one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen? U bet ur ***. The interacting with the cast was next level. The way they remembered his name and called him out in crowds to help with the mission was priceless. They are memories that will last a lifetime for my family. It was easily the best vacation we have ever been on. The hate that it gets from people who never went is unwarranted. If it is too expensive, don’t go. How something that just exists bothers people so much is beyond comprehension. My one complaint was I wish it was more OT but that plays into the hope that they would reboot the story every few years and do different eras. Who knows maybe they would have. Maybe they will. I can’t see them tearing it down. They have a lot tied up into it. I’m sad to hear it’s ending. I wish it was more affordable so more fans could have gone and experienced it.
 

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I was hoping this would stick around and have a refresh every couple of years. After we went and experienced the story there was absolutely no reason to go back. All that being said, was it expensive? yes. Did I think it would be worth it? No. Was watching my 8 year old light up at the first sighting of a real life astromech roll up to him out of nowhere one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen? U bet ur ***. The interacting with the cast was next level. The way they remembered his name and called him out in crowds to help with the mission was priceless. They are memories that will last a lifetime for my family. It was easily the best vacation we have ever been on. The hate that it gets from people who never went is unwarranted. If it is too expensive, don’t go. How something that just exists bothers people so much is beyond comprehension. My one complaint was I wish it was more OT but that plays into the hope that they would reboot the story every few years and do different eras. Who knows maybe they would have. Maybe they will. I can’t see them tearing it down. They have a lot tied up into it. I’m sad to hear it’s ending. I wish it was more affordable so more fans could have gone and experienced it.
I'm glad you were able to have a great experience with your family. I feel the same way, I think they've got too much invested into it to just bulldoze it. I feel like a lot of Disney/Star Wars is in flux right now, so maybe they can do a retheme/relaunch. I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens.
 
It's an all-inclusive experience, not a hotel. So you could just pay the $2k and nothing else if you wanted and get the full experience. Not cheap, certainly, but that's all you'd really need to spend beyond travel.

One of my friends who came with me did exactly that. Cheap ass flight in on Spirit, did the cruiser, spent maybe $100 extra bucks on cocktails and then went straight home.
That's good intel, thanks, ...but I'd probably have to go alone since my wife likes some Star Wars, but not enough to spend $4k plus a bar tab. If it was Mandalorian or Rogue One era themed, we'd both would probably be more likely to spend the money.
 
That's good intel, thanks, ...but I'd probably have to go alone since my wife likes some Star Wars, but not enough to spend $4k plus a bar tab. If it was Mandalorian or Rogue One era themed, we'd both would probably be more likely to spend the money.
This isn't directed at you and your wife specifically. But I find the timeline arguments pretty silly (and I've heard them a lot.) The timeline is almost entirely irrelevant to the actual experience and if the (very brief) presence of ST characters is what's keeping you off, then you're just cutting off your nose to spite your face.
 
There are multiple reasons it failed. One of them was the time line. Millions don't like/care about the Sequel trilogy in any way. The OT has 46 years of History. They should have known that many more would have preferred the experience of the Star Wars OT. Disney wanted to push their movies/media above everything else.
 
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There are multiple reasons it failed. One of them was the time line. Millions don't like/care about the Sequel trilogy in any way. The OT has 46 years of History. They should have known that many more would have preferred the experience of the Star Wars OT. Disney wanted to push their movies above everything else.
Which part of it didn’t you like? literally cutting your nose off as the previous post stated. The time
Line part is silly like he said. But indulge me on the parts you liked least or if
maybe you liked a little bit of it tell me what that was so at least we have a baseline of your tastes. I for one didn’t care for the signing at the dinner. what did you think of it? Wait what? You are criticizing something that literally didn’t affect you one bit? or you have had no experience with?

”Multiple reasons it failed” now I feel bad because I had no idea you worked as a board member and have inside knowledge on a billion dollar company. Indulge us on the reason, not opinions but actual reasons. Facts are no one knows, it’s all speculation.

If you people didn’t like the sequel trilogy or an immersive hotel experience don’t go or don’t watch it. Fun fact: my wife loves Gilmore girls, I personally don’t give 2 poops about it, guess what? I don’t watch it. It has no bearing on my life whatsoever.
 
Actually my helper Monkey told me there were multiple reasons it failed in a fireside chat we had just a few days ago. He was on one of the Disney boards but at one point had to just walk away after he said most of the people in charge had made so many bad decisions since Disney bought Star Wars he couldn't ever foresee them ever doing anything that would ever resemble a smart move and or a good idea. He didn't go into minute details so I can't give you the facts you'll need for your book. He said when he got a chance he would put a video up on youtube to indulge those with a curious mind like yours. Until then he ask that you watch the video below and

 
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This isn't directed at you and your wife specifically. But I find the timeline arguments pretty silly (and I've heard them a lot.) The timeline is almost entirely irrelevant to the actual experience and if the (very brief) presence of ST characters is what's keeping you off, then you're just cutting off your nose to spite your face.
I hear you. I'm not bashing the sequel trilogy, just saying we both loved the Mandalorian / Rogue 1 / (Solo & OT) a lot more than the ST (particularly last 2 movies), and it might've got us to spend that kind of money for a weekend trip if that was the timeline of the hotel & park experience. I personally would rather see OT Stormtroopers & Phase 2 Clones walking around (like in Andor) than the First Order Stormtroopers. I also am not sure if they do this, but lots of different recognizable Aliens walking around and in cantinas would definitely elevate the experience in my opinion. I think everyone agrees that it sucks that the current SW hotel failed and Disney is having to shut it down for whatever reasons.
 
I personally would rather see OT Stormtroopers & Phase 2 Clones walking around (like in Andor) than the First Order Stormtroopers.

I mean, so would I, obviously!
I also am not sure if they do this, but lots of different recognizable Aliens walking around and in cantinas would definitely elevate the experience in my opinion.
The Starcruiser has a decent amount of alien characters. Galaxy's Edge itself, sadly, does not and desperately needs them.

I think everyone agrees that it sucks that the current SW hotel failed and Disney is having to shut it down for whatever reasons.
Well, a lot of toxic people are cheering its demise. But that's the world we live in.
 
I wouldn't bash anyone's experience, but my feeling was that there was no way I was spending that sort of money on something that I wasn't 100% sold on.

I was 100% in on the Sail Barge and paid the money for it. I was not 100% on the $80 hovertank (Rogue One) and waited until I could get it at a reasonable price. Had the Starcruiser been even a remotely reasonable price I'm sure I would have enjoyed it. I can't enjoy a $50 per person meal...

The Galactic Starcruiser rooms seemed pretty cool, but fairly generic. I'd say they were BETTER than a normal sea cruise which this experience was more or less emulating. The entertainment I'm sure was better in person than it looked from the outside, but even then... you can do video games / puzzle games / VR games / Escape room / live music or whatever at home for way less.

Every cruise I've ever been on has had more entertainment and arguably better so they weren't winning me over with a captain wearing blue face, waving a lightsaber around, and flipping a few switches/buttons.

I know some don't like the timeline argument, but it didn't work in their favor. I've been to Batuu so even the excursion isn't something new enough to justify the expense.

Not happy this is going away, but unless they had drastically cut the price, made it a more OT related experience, and seriously upped the entertainment factor... I was never going to do this.
 
So first of all, whoever in charge of marketing failed big time. It's way more than a "star wars hotel," why not market it as a sort of space camp/interactive cruise?

Also imagine how incredible it would have been if on different weekends they had different era themes?? Like one weekend PT/Clone Wars, one OT/Mandalorian, one ST
 
So first of all, whoever in charge of marketing failed big time. It's way more than a "star wars hotel," why not market it as a sort of space camp/interactive cruise?
The marketing was terrible, for sure, and they never adequately explained it. So much misunderstanding and misinformation about it, even right up to today.
Also imagine how incredible it would have been if on different weekends they had different era themes?? Like one weekend PT/Clone Wars, one OT/Mandalorian, one ST
That would have been an expensive and logistical nightmare (and the timelines wouldn't link up with Batuu, which is a big part of the experience.) Also, who'd that be for? Super rich people who go 3 or 4 times, to get all versions?
 
So first of all, whoever in charge of marketing failed big time. It's way more than a "star wars hotel," why not market it as a sort of space camp/interactive cruise?

Also imagine how incredible it would have been if on different weekends they had different era themes?? Like one weekend PT/Clone Wars, one OT/Mandalorian, one ST
I can't say I've even seen 1 single advertisement other than myself seeking out a YouTube video or reading a review on this forum. Failing big time is an understatement.
 
my thoughts exactly. they should have made this more affordable for everyone. maybe charged $900 for the 2 nights as they know the fans will clean out the souvenirs from the giftshops and spend the rest of the $$ on Batuu
That's the thing, that come there as a museum - to look and do not touch anything) Indeed, the prices of space as a spaceship.
 
I have a feeling that Disney is just rebranding this as an Star Wars themed hotel instead of making it an interactive experience. Disney sank way too much $$$ into the Starcruiser to simply pull the plug on it. I think they will shut it down for the rest of 2023 and maybe till spring of 2024 and reopen it as the Batuu Hotel or something, adjust the prices and make it affordable to recoup their losses.
 
I have a feeling that Disney is just rebranding this as a Star Wars themed hotel instead of making it an interactive experience. Disney sank way too much $$$ into the Starcruiser to simply pull the plug on it. I think they will shut it down for the rest of 2023 and maybe till spring of 2024 and reopen it as the Batuu Hotel or something, adjust the prices and make it affordable to recoup their losses.
I agree although I am betting on a buzz Lightyear hotel?

But it would not be unheard of for Disney to let the building rot as they have done that with a few past attractions. (Hell the place could have a serious mold problem they won’t admit too🤣 )
 
I agree although I am betting on a buzz Lightyear hotel?

But it would not be unheard of for Disney to let the building rot as they have done that with a few past attractions. (Hell the place could have a serious mold problem they won’t admit too🤣 )
I think Disney will just do a "Space Themed" hotel that could feature both Lightyear and Star Wars as well as other Space properties that Disney owns as well like Guardians of the Galaxy.
 
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